The Crimean War was a military conflict fought from October 1853 to February 1856 in which the Russian Empire lost to an alliance of the Ottoman Empire, France and Sardinia. The immediate cause involved the rights of Christian minorities in the Holy Land, a part of the Ottoman Empire; the French promoted the rights of Roman Catholics, while Russia promoted those of the Eastern Orthodox Church. The longer-term causes involved the decline of the Ottoman Empire and the unwillingness of Britain and France to allow Russia to gain territory and power at Ottoman expense, it has been noted that the causes, in one case involving an argument over a key, have never revealed a "greater confusion of purpose", yet they led to a war noted for its "notoriously incompetent international butchery". While the churches worked out their differences and came to an agreement, Nicholas I of Russia and the French Emperor Napoleon III refused to back down. Nicholas issued an ultimatum that the Orthodox subjects of the Ottoman Empire be placed under his protection.
Britain arranged a compromise that Nicholas agreed to. When the Ottomans demanded changes, Nicholas prepared for war. Having obtained promises of support from France and Britain, the Ottomans declared war on Russia in October 1853; the war started in the Balkans in July 1853, when Russian troops occupied the Danubian Principalities, which were under Ottoman suzerainty began to cross the Danube. Led by Omar Pasha, the Ottomans fought a strong defensive campaign and stopped the advance at Silistra. A separate action on the fort town of Kars in eastern Anatolia led to a siege, a Turkish attempt to reinforce the garrison was destroyed by a Russian fleet at Sinop. Fearing an Ottoman collapse and Britain rushed forces to Gallipoli, they moved north to Varna in June 1854, arriving just in time for the Russians to abandon Silistra. Aside from a minor skirmish at Köstence, there was little for the allies to do. Karl Marx quipped, "there they are, the French doing nothing and the British helping them as fast as possible".
Frustrated by the wasted effort, with demands for action from their citizens, the allied force decided to attack Russia's main naval base in the Black Sea at Sevastopol on the Crimean peninsula. After extended preparations, the forces landed on the peninsula in September 1854 and marched their way to a point south of Sevastopol after the successful Battle of the Alma; the Russians counterattacked on 25 October in what became the Battle of Balaclava and were repulsed, but at the cost of depleting the British Army forces. A second counterattack, at Inkerman, ended in stalemate; the front led to brutal conditions for troops on both sides. Smaller military actions took place in the Baltic, the Caucasus, the White Sea, the North Pacific. Sevastopol fell after eleven months, neutral countries began to join the Allied cause. Isolated and facing a bleak prospect of invasion from the west if the war continued, Russia sued for peace in March 1856. France and Britain welcomed this development; the Treaty of Paris, signed on 30 March 1856, ended the war.
It forbade Russia from basing warships in the Black Sea. The Ottoman vassal states of Wallachia and Moldavia became independent. Christians there were granted a degree of official equality, the Orthodox Church regained control of the Christian churches in dispute; the Crimean War was one of the first conflicts in which the military used modern technologies such as explosive naval shells and telegraphs. The war was one of the first to be documented extensively in written photographs; as the legend of the "Charge of the Light Brigade" demonstrates, the war became an iconic symbol of logistical and tactical failures and mismanagement. The reaction in the UK was a demand for professionalisation, most famously achieved by Florence Nightingale, who gained worldwide attention for pioneering modern nursing while treating the wounded; the Crimean War proved to be the moment of truth for Nikolaevan Russia. The humiliation forced Russia's educated elites to identify the Empire's problems and to recognize the need for fundamental transformations aimed at modernizing and restoring Russia's position in the ranks of European powers.
Historians have studied the role of the Crimean War as a catalyst for the reforms of Russia's social institutions: serfdom, local self-government and military service. More scholars have turned their attention to the impact of the Crimean War on the development of Russian nationalistic discourse; as the Ottoman Empire weakened during the 19th century, Russia stood poised to take advantage by expanding south. In the 1850s, the British and the French, who were allied with the Ottoman Empire, were determined not to allow this to happen. A. J. P. Taylor argues that the war resulted not from aggression but from the interacting fears of the major players: In some sense the Crimean war was predestined and had deep-seated causes. Neither Nicholas I nor Napoleon III nor the British government could retreat in the conflict for prestige once it was launched. Nicholas needed a subservient Turkey for the sake of Russian security. Mutual fear, not mutual aggression, caused the Crimean war. In the early 1800s, the Ottoman Empire
The Peninsular War was a military conflict between Napoleon's empire and Bourbon Spain, for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when the French and Spanish armies invaded and occupied Portugal in 1807, escalated in 1808 when France turned on Spain its ally; the war on the peninsula lasted until the Sixth Coalition defeated Napoleon in 1814, is regarded as one of the first wars of national liberation, significant for the emergence of large-scale guerrilla warfare. The Peninsular War overlaps with what the Spanish-speaking world calls the Guerra de la Independencia Española, which began with the Dos de Mayo Uprising on 2 May 1808 and ended on 17 April 1814; the French occupation destroyed the Spanish administration, which fragmented into quarrelling provincial juntas. The episode remains as the bloodiest event in Spain's modern history, doubling in relative terms the Spanish Civil War. A reconstituted national government, the Cortes of Cádiz—in effect a government-in-exile—fortified itself in Cádiz in 1810, but could not raise effective armies because it was besieged by 70,000 French troops.
British and Portuguese forces secured Portugal, using it as a safe position from which to launch campaigns against the French army and provide whatever supplies they could get to the Spanish, while the Spanish armies and guerrillas tied down vast numbers of Napoleon's troops. These combined regular and irregular allied forces, by restricting French control of territory, prevented Napoleon's marshals from subduing the rebellious Spanish provinces, the war continued through years of stalemate; the British Army, under Lt. Gen. Sir Arthur Wellesley the 1st Duke of Wellington, guarded Portugal and campaigned against the French in Spain alongside the reformed Portuguese army; the demoralised Portuguese army was reorganised and refitted under the command of Gen. William Beresford, appointed commander-in-chief of the Portuguese forces by the exiled Portuguese royal family, fought as part of the combined Anglo-Portuguese Army under Wellesley. In 1812, when Napoleon set out with a massive army on what proved to be a disastrous French invasion of Russia, a combined allied army under Wellesley pushed into Spain, defeating the French at Salamanca and taking Madrid.
In the following year Wellington scored a decisive victory over King Joseph Bonaparte's army in the Battle of Vitoria. Pursued by the armies of Britain and Portugal, Marshal Jean-de-Dieu Soult, no longer able to get sufficient support from a depleted France, led the exhausted and demoralized French forces in a fighting withdrawal across the Pyrenees during the winter of 1813–1814; the years of fighting in Spain were a heavy burden on France's Grande Armée. While the French were victorious in battle, their communications and supplies were tested and their units were isolated, harassed or overwhelmed by partisans fighting an intense guerrilla war of raids and ambushes; the Spanish armies were beaten and driven to the peripheries, but they would regroup and relentlessly hound the French. This drain on French resources led Napoleon, who had unwittingly provoked a total war, to call the conflict the "Spanish Ulcer". War and revolution against Napoleon's occupation led to the Spanish Constitution of 1812 a cornerstone of European liberalism.
The burden of war destroyed the social and economic fabric of Portugal and Spain, ushered in an era of social turbulence, political instability and economic stagnation. Devastating civil wars between liberal and absolutist factions, led by officers trained in the Peninsular War, persisted in Iberia until 1850; the cumulative crises and disruptions of invasion and restoration led to the independence of most of Spain's American colonies and the independence of Brazil from Portugal. The Treaties of Tilsit, negotiated during a meeting in July 1807 between Emperors Alexander I of Russia and Napoleon, concluded the War of the Fourth Coalition. With Prussia shattered, the Russian Empire allied with the First French Empire, Napoleon expressed irritation that Portugal was open to trade with the United Kingdom. Pretexts were plentiful. Furthermore, Prince John of Braganza, regent for his insane mother Queen Maria I, had declined to join the emperor's Continental System against British trade. Events moved rapidly.
The Emperor sent orders on 19 July 1807 to his Foreign Minister, Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, to order Portugal to declare war on Britain, close its ports to British ships, detain British subjects on a provisional basis and sequester their goods. After a few days, a large force started concentrating at Bayonne. Meanwhile, the Portuguese government's resolve was stiffening, shortly afterward Napoleon was once again told that Portugal would not go beyond its original agreements. Napoleon now had all the pretext that he needed, while his force, the First Corps of Observation of the Gironde with divisional general Jean-Andoche Junot in command, was prepared to march on Lisbon. After he received the Portuguese answer, he ordered Junot's corps to cross the frontier into the Spanish Empire. While all this was going on, the secret Treaty of Fontainebleau had been signed between France and Spain; the document was drawn up by Napoleon's marshal of the palace Géraud Duroc and Eugenio Izquierdo, an agent for Manuel Godoy.
The treaty proposed to carve up Portugal into three
John Harry Robson Lowe, Robbie to his friends, was an English professional philatelist, stamp dealer and stamp auctioneer. Lowe is regarded by philatelists as the father of postal history, having published many definitive works on the subject and having introduced the term in his first major book Handstruck Postage Stamps of the Empire 1680–1900 in 1948. In 1970 he was awarded the Lichtenstein Medal by the Collectors Club of New York, he started his philatelic career at Fox & Co. in 1926 and established his own firm, Robson Lowe Ltd. in Regent Street, London, in 1926. He moved to 50 Pall Mall in 1940 and ran an auction business from Bournemouth starting in 1945. For health reasons he was unable to serve in the military during World War Two. Lowe refused to sign the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists due to the refusal of the organisers to remove the name of South African Adrian Albert Jurgens, whom he considered a stamp forger. Lowe was a larger-than-life something of a raconteur. According to one story, while playing cards in South Africa, after several drinks, he won an orange farm, but was able subsequently to swap it for a stamp collection.
As well as being a pioneer in postal history, Lowe was one of the first to recognise the potential of revenue philately, long neglected. In 1990, he was the first President of The Revenue Society. Lowe was responsible for the publication of many of the key works in philately, his personal magnum opus was The Encyclopaedia of British Empire Postage Stamps which he never quite finished but which stands as a monument to his life's work. The encyclopaedia was based on the earlier Regent series. In 1974 he received the Crawford Medal for Volume 5 of The Encyclopaedia of British Empire Postage Stamps and in 1991 he became the first stamp dealer to be made an Honorary member of the Royal Philatelic Society London; the Encyclopaedia of British Empire Postage Stamps. London: Robson Lowe Vol. 1, Great Britain and the Empire in Europe, 1948. Vol. 2, The Empire In Africa, 1949. Vol. 3, The Empire in Asia, 1951. Vol. 4, The Empire in Australasia, 1962. Vol. 5, North America, 1973. Vol. 6, Leeward Islands. London: Christie's Robson Lowe, 1991 ISBN 0-85397-437-3, 293p.
The Regent Catalogue of Empire Postage Stamps. London: Robson Lowe, 1932–49; the Regent Encyclopaedia of Empire Postage Stamps. London: Halcyon Book Company Ltd. 1935. 240p. The Romance of the Empire Posts. London: Robson Lowe Ltd. 193? 9p. The Bishop Mark. London: Robson Lowe, 1937. 20p. Handstruck Postage Stamps of the Empire 1680–1900. London: Herbert Joseph Ltd. 1937. 246p. The Handstruck Postage Stamps of 1840. London: Robson Lowe, 1938. 16p. Masterpieces of Engraving on Postage Stamps, 1840–1940. London: The Postal History Society, 1943 96p; the Systematic Study of Postal History: A paper read at the Society's meeting, 3 April 1946. Edinburgh: R. Stewart, 1946 4p. How Rare Stamps and Collections are sold. London: Robson Lowe, 1947. 15p. The Codrington Correspondence, 1743–1851: being a study of a discovered dossier of letters from the West Indian islands of Antigua and Barbuda addressed to the Codringtons of Dodington with especial reference to the history of those adventurous times and the hitherto unrecorded postal history of the Antiguan mail.
London: Robson Lowe, 1951. 112p. The Work of Jean de Sperati. London: British Philatelic Association, 1955–56. 214 p. with 143 plates. The Colonial Posts in the United States of America, 1606–1783. Co-Author: Kay Horowicz. London: Robson Lowe, 1967. 52p. British Postage Stamps of the 19th Century. London: National Postal Museum, 1st ed. 1968, 2nd ed. 1979. The Kings of Egypt and Their Stamps 1860–1960: from a collection based on the study formed by the late A S Mackenzie-Low. London: Robson Lowe, 1969. 40p. The Harrisons of Waterlows: A record of the engravers T. S. Harrison and his son Ronald when employed by Waterlow Brows. and Layton Ltd. of London, 1897–1912: Also essays for the postage stamps of the Australian Commonwealth made by Ronald G. Harrison. London: Robson Lowe, 1970 12p. 1922 Ireland 1972. Printed by Woods of Perth, 1972. 12p. Brunei 1895 Star and Crescent Issue: the history and a plating study. S.l.: Robson Lowe, 1973. Transvaal, 1878–1880. S.l.: R. Lowe, 1973; the Uganda Missionaries. London: Robson Lowe, 1974.
8p. The De La Rue Key Plates:based on the notes of James Ronald Whitfield. London: R. Lowe, 1979 ISBN 0-85397-079-3, 8p. Indian Field Post Offices 1903–04: the Aden-Yemeni Boundary Commission, the Somaliland Field Force. London: R. Lowe, 1979 ISBN 0-85397-107-2, 8p; the Gee-Ma Forgeries: China 1897–1949: with border areas, Manchuria and Yunnan. London: Robson Lowe, 1980 ISBN 0-85397-106-4, 10p. Forged overprints and cancellations of China, Japanese Occupation, Great Britain and Tibet. Newspaper Postage Stamps: The De La Rue Dies 1860–1870. London: Pall Mall Stamp Co. for Robson Lowe, 1980 ISBN 0-85397-184-6, 8p. From China and Tibet: A commentary on letters written by missionaries working in the interior. 1844–1865. London: Pall Mall Stamp Co. for Robson Lowe, 1981 ISBN 0-85397-240-0, 20p. The Oswald Schroeder Forgeries. London: Pall Mall Stamp Co. for Robson Lowe, 1981 ISBN 0-85397-183-8, 16p. A study of this little known forger. Iraq: The Influence of Bradbury, Wilkinson & Co. Ltd. on the postage and revenue stamps.
London: R. Lowe, 1984 ISBN 0-85397-383-0, 21p; the Die Proofs of Waterlow & Sons: Pt.1, Great Britain & the Empire to 1960. Co-Au
Philately is the study of stamps and postal history and other related items. It refers to the collection and research activities on stamps and other philatelic products. Philately involves more than just stamp collecting, which does not involve the study of stamps, it is possible to be a philatelist without owning any stamps. For instance, the stamps being studied may be rare, or reside only in museums; the word "philately" is the English translation of the French "philatélie", coined by Georges Herpin in 1864. Herpin stated that stamps had been collected and studied for the previous six or seven years and a better name was required for the new hobby than timbromanie, disliked, he took the Greek root word φιλ- phil-, meaning "an attraction or affinity for something", ἀτέλεια ateleia, meaning "exempt from duties and taxes" to form "philatelie". The introduction of postage stamps meant that the receipt of letters was now free of charge, whereas before stamps it was normal for postal charges to be paid by the recipient of a letter.
The alternative terms "timbromania", "timbrophily" and "timbrology" fell out of use as philately gained acceptance during the 1860s. Traditional philately is the study of the technical aspects of stamp production and stamp identification, including: The stamp design process The paper used The method of printing The gum The method of separation Any overprints on the stamp Any security markings, underprints or perforated initials The study of philatelic fakes and forgeries Thematic philately known as topical philately, is the study of what is depicted on individual stamps. There are hundreds of popular subjects, such as birds, ships, presidents, maps, space craft and insects on stamps. Stamps depicted on stamps constitute a topical area of collecting. Interesting aspects of topical philately include design alterations. Postal history studies the postal systems and how they operate and, or, the study of postage stamps and covers and associated material illustrating historical episodes of postal systems both before and after the introduction of the adhesive stamps.
It includes the study of postmarks, post offices, postal authorities, postal rates and regulations and the process by which letters are moved from sender to recipient, including routes and choice of conveyance. A classic example is the Pony Express, the fastest way to send letters across the United States during the few months that it operated. Covers that can be proven to have been sent by the Pony Express are prized by collectors. Aerophilately is the branch of postal history. Philatelists have observed the development of mail transport by air from its beginning, all aspects of airmail services have been extensively studied and documented by specialists. Astrophilately is the branch of postal history that specializes in the study of stamps and postmarked envelopes that are connected to the outer space. Postal stationery includes stamped envelopes, postal cards, letter sheets, aérogrammes and wrappers, most of which have an embossed or imprinted stamp or indicia indicating the prepayment of postage.
Erinnophilia is the study of objects that are not postal stamps. Examples include Easter Seals, Christmas Seals, propaganda labels, so forth. Philatelic literature documents the results of philatelic study and includes thousands of books and periodicals. Revenue philately is the study of stamps used to collect taxes or fees on such things as, legal documents, court fees, tobacco, alcoholic drinks and medicines, playing cards, hunting licenses and newspapers. Maximaphily is the study of Maximum Cards. Maximum Cards can be defined as a picture post card with postage stamp on the same theme and a cancellation, with a maximum concordance between all three. Youth philately is the study of stamps with colorful characters, it is aimed at getting kids to be interested in stamp collecting. Philately uses a number of tools, including stamp tongs to safely handle the stamps, a strong magnifying glass and a perforation gauge to measure the perforation gauge of the stamp; the identification of watermarks is important and may be done with the naked eye by turning the stamp over or holding it up to the light.
If this fails watermark fluid may be used, which "wets" the stamp to reveal the mark. Some tools are available online; these are collector clubs, enthusiast forums and trading platforms. Other common tools include stamp stock books and stamp hinges. Philatelic organisations sprang up soon after people started studying stamps, they include local and international clubs and societies where collectors come together to share the various aspects of their hobby. One of the most known organizations is the American Philatelic Society. List of notable postage stamps List of philatelic topics List of philatelists Postal history Stamp collecting Sefi, A. J. An Introduction to Advanced Philately, with special reference to typical methods of stamp production. London: Rowley & Rowley, 1926. Sutton, R. J. & K. W. Anthony; the Stamp Collector's Encyclopaedia. 6th edition. London: Stanley Paul, 1966. Williams, L. N. & M. Fundamentals of Philately. State College: The American Philatelic Society, 1971. Can Plastic Films
Military mail, as opposed to civilian mail, refers to the postal services provided by armed forces that allow serving members to send and receive mail. Military mail systems are subsidized to ensure that military mail does not cost the sender any more than normal domestic mail. In some cases, military personnel in a combat zone may post letters and packages to their home country for free. Modern military mail services are provided by most armed forces around the world. In some nations, individual service branches may run their own military mail program. Early forms of military mail may go back to the dawn of civilization. There is some evidence of it dating back to Ancient Egypt of the 2nd millennium BC; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle make mention of messengers being sent by King Edward the Elder to recall members of the Kent fyrd, but it is regarded that the origins of the postal services stem from the King's Messengers of medieval times, in particular, the Royal Post established in the reign of King Edward IV to support his troops engaged in a war against Scotland.
In 1795 Parliament granted the penny postage concession to soldiers and sailors of the British Army and Royal Navy. Four years in 1799, the Duke of York appointed Henry Darlot, an ‘intelligent clerk’ from the General Post Office as the Army Postmaster to accompany his expedition to Helder. Thomas Reynolds, as the British Post Office Agent in Lisbon, Portugal was made responsible for coordinating the exchange of the British Army’s mails at the port during the Peninsular War. Two Sergeant Postmasters were appointed to work with Reynolds; the sergeants reported to the Duke of Wellington’s the Superintendent of Military Communications, Major Scovell and Lieutenant Colonel Sturgeon. After complaints about the mail services to the British troops fighting in the Crimean War the Postmaster General authorised the secondment of GPO staff to organise and distribute mail in the theatre of war. A Base Army Post Office was established in Constantinople and a field post Office with the Army Headquarters at Balaklava.
A regular seaborne mail service was established between Constantinople. In response to demands made by Florence Nightingale, a method of transmitting money was devised to allow troops to transfer monies back to their families at home in the United Kingdom; this was designed to prevent drunkenness and became the world's first International Money Order Service. In its first month of operation £7,000 was remitted by the British troops; the military postal experience of the Crimea and the lessons learnt from the Indian Army encouraged the British Army to review the arrangements for the provision of a postal service to the troops in the field. There were two opinions. Secondly, that civilians from the Post Office be responsible for the service as in the Crimean and Indian Army example; the provision of a mail service to soldiers remained an ad hoc affair until 1882. In 1881 a rebellion broke out in Egypt. In response a British Expeditionary Force was sent to Egypt in the same year under the command of Sir Garnet Wolseley.
This gave Lieutenant Colonel du Plat Taylor the opportunity to raise the matter of the postal corps again and it was agreed that an Army Post Office Corps should be formed. Mails from Britain were despatched three times a week via the'overland route' through France to Alexandria; the Army Post Offices sold stamps and postal orders. In addition to the mail services, a free parcel service from the naval docks at Deptford was set up; these parcels transports. This service was the forerunner of the Military Forwarding Office service; the Expedition was a success and set the basis for the institution of military mail, both in England and around the world. The unit received high praise from the commander-in-chief, who wrote: At the end of World War I, the Royal Engineers along with the Royal Air Force helped to pioneer international airmail services, by setting up airmail routes between Folkestone and Cologne, Germany to service the British Army of the Rhine; the British Forces Post Office provides a postal service to HM Forces, separate from that provided by Royal Mail in the United Kingdom.
BFPO addresses are used for the delivery of mail around the world. BFPO is based at RAF Northolt in North West London; the mission of BFPO is to "...provide an efficient and effective Postal and Courier Service to sustain the fighting power of UK Armed Forces Worldwide." When sending mail from the UK to a member of HM Forces serving overseas, the sender must address it to the appropriate BFPO number, not to the country in which that person is based. In 2012, in collaboration with Royal Mail, the BFPO introduced UK-style postcodes, to help ordering items online, owing to problems with websites not recognising the BFPO addressing format; the addresses are assigned to the notional post town "BFPO" and, as of 2012, the postcodes all begin with "BF1". The Bundeswehr's military mail system is known in German as Feldpost; these include Kosovo and Afghanistan. Feldpost addresses consist of the word "Feldpost" and a four-digit number beginning with "64" followed by two additional digits denoting the specific mission.
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