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The Results of the Crimean War

By Robert Pearce | Published in History Review 2011 
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Robert Pearce asks whether Britain benefited from the 1853-56 contest.

According to Sellar and Yeatman, in 1066 And All That, the Crimean War, as well as being caused by a number of causes, was ‘exceptionally inevitable’. The muddled thinking here nicely matches the muddle that was the war – though the first was humorous, the second horrendous. In fact, the war should never have happened. No one wanted it or knew exactly what it was about. In considering its results therefore, although we should ask the obvious question – what were Britain’s aims in entering the war and how far were they achieved? – a more fruitful area of study focuses on its unsought effects, its byproducts, in terms of journalism, political change, medicine and army reforms.


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