The road to Waterloo: Week 13 (18 – 24 May 2015)

Treaty of Casalanza
The 20 May 1815 marks the end of the Neapolitan War with the signing of the Treaty of Casalanza.  This conflict, which had started on 15 March, was between the pro-Napoleon Kingdom of Naples on the one hand and the Austrian Empire on the other.

29 days to Waterloo

Prompted by Napoleon’s escape from Elba, Marshal Joachim Murat, Napoleon’s brother-in-law, had declared war on Austria.  He was concerned that the European Powers at the Congress of Vienna had plans to remove him and restore Ferdinand IV to the Neapolitan throne.

Murat did not sign the treaty; he had already fled to Corsica following the decisive defeats at the Battles of Tolentino and San Germano.

On the 20th, Edward Cooke, Under Secretary to Lord Castlereagh, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, writes to Wellington from Rome with “gratifying and important intelligence” that he “may consider the Neapolitan War as most successfully terminated”:

“The Neapolitans have hardly fought at all.  Officers and men desert almost by regiments; the whole country has risen against Murat who deserves his fate by his perfidy, his folly, his gasconades and his lies.

Your Grace knows that a Treaty is signed between Austria and Ferdinand the 4th.  The most liberal terms are offered both in Austria and Sicilian, proclamations to all who deserting Murat join the cause of their ancient legitimate sovereign.”
[MS 61 Wellington Papers 1/462/24]

Ferdinand IV was restored to the Neapolitan throne on 23 May.

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