Day 32 – Q 1. Examine the factors behind the Crimean war of 1853-56? Why was it significant? Discuss. (10 Marks)

  • IASbaba
  • March 3, 2022
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TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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1. Examine the factors behind the Crimean war of 1853-56? Why was it significant? Discuss.

 1853-56 के क्रीमिया युद्ध के पीछे के कारकों का परीक्षण कीजिए? यह महत्वपूर्ण क्यों था? चर्चा कीजिए।


Candidates need to write about Crimean war and it’s different factors also highlight the significance of the crimean war. 


The Crimean War broke out on 5th October 1853, a military conflict fought between the Russian Empire on one side, against an alliance of Britain, France, the Ottoman Empire and Sardinia. The complexity of the war meant that it was fought on the grounds of various reasons by different parties, as everyone had a vested interest in the region.


The outbreak of violence arose from various factors:

  • As the Ottoman Empire steadily weakened during the 19th century, the Russian Empire stood poised to take advantage by expanding southward. 
  • In the 1850s, the British and the French Empires were allied with the Ottoman Empire and were determined to prevent that from happening. 
  • Russia’s aggressiveness also made the British nervous about maintaining their trade with Turkey and access to India. Meanwhile, the French, who still remembered Napoleon I’s defeat by the Russians, saw a chance to take revenge.
  • Religious tensions helped trigger the war. While it’s remembered as a clash of empires, the Crimean War was sparked by a seemingly minor religious dispute. 
  • For years, Orthodox Christians and Roman Catholics had squabbled over access to holy sites within the borders of the majority-Muslim Ottoman Empire.
  • Its name notwithstanding, the Crimean War was a global conflict that featured several different theaters of battle. Early clashes occurred in the Balkans and in Turkey, and the focus only shifted to Crimea after the Allies launched an invasion of the peninsula in September 1854.
  • For centuries, one central goal of Russian foreign policy was to obtain a warm water port in the south namely, at the Bosporus Straits and the Strait of the Dardanelles, the small waterways connecting the Black Sea to the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas. 


  • The war helped convince Russia to sell Alaska to the United States. Several factors were involved in Russia’s decision to offload its North American territories in Alaska, but the most pressing arose after its defeat in Crimea.
  • Thanks to new technologies such as the steamship and the electric telegraph, the Crimean War was the first major conflict where civilian journalists sent dispatches from the battlefield. 
  • The resulting Treaty of Paris, signed on March 30, 1856, guaranteed the integrity of Ottoman Turkey and obliged Russia to surrender southern Bessarabia at the mouth of the Danube.
  • The Crimean War produced about 500,000 total casualties, with about half suffered by each side. A disproportionate number of deaths were caused by disease. Their work paved the way for later developments in battlefield medicine.


The greater importance of the Crimean War is embodied in one international and one national element. It was the final war in which the Ottoman Empire had any victorious role and it Marked the end of the veritable charade of Russian military dominance on the Continent. On the national scale, the Crimean War, some historians have argued, marked the beginning of the road to the Russian Revolution of 1917. 

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