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Siege of Paris (1870–71)

POI: 48.856578, 2.351828
The Siege of Paris, lasting from 19 September 1870 to 28 January 1871, and the consequent capture of the city by Prussian forces, led to French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War and the establishment of the German Empire as well as the Paris Commune.
Background
As early as August 1870 the Prussian 3rd Army led by Crown Prince Frederick of Prussia (the future Emperor Frederick III) had been marching towards Paris, but was recalled to deal with French forces accompanied by Napoleon III. These forces were crushed at the Battle of Sedan, and the road to Paris was left open. Personally leading the Prussian forces, King William I of Prussia, along with his chief of staff Helmuth von Moltke, took the 3rd Army and the new Prussian Army of the Meuse under Crown Prince Albert of Saxony, and marched on Paris virtually unopposed. In Paris, the Governor and commander-in-chief of the city's defenses, General Louis Jules Trochu, assembled a force of regular soldiers who had managed to escape from Sedan under Joseph Vinoy, together with the National Guards and a brigade of naval seamen which totalled around 400,000 personnel.
Siege
The Prussian armies quickly reached Paris, and on 15 September Moltke issued orders for the investment of the city. Crown Prince Albert's army closed in on Paris from the north unopposed, while Crown Prince Frederick moved in from the south. On 17 September a force under Vinoy attacked Frederick's army near Villeneuve-Saint-Georges in an effort to save a supply depot there, but it was eventually driven back by artillery fire. The railroad to Orléans was cut, and on the 18th Versailles was taken, and then served as the 3rd Army's and eventually Wilhelm's headquarters. By 19 September the encirclement was complete, and the siege officially began. Responsible for the direction of the siege was General (later Field Marshal) von Blumenthal. Prussia's chancellor Otto von Bismarck suggested shelling Paris to ensure the city's quick surrender and render all French efforts to free the city pointless, but the German high command, headed by the king of Prussia, turned down the proposal on the insistence of General von Blumenthal, on the grounds that a bombardment would affect civilians, violate the rules of engagement, and turn the opinion of third parties against the Germans, without speeding up the final victory. It was also contended that a quick French surrender would leave the new French armies undefeated and allow France to renew the war shortly after. The new French armies would have to be annihilated first, and Paris would have to be starved into surrender. Trochu had little faith in the ability of the National Guards, which made up half the force defending the city. So instead of making any significant attempt to prevent the investment by the Germans, Trochu hoped that Moltke would attempt to take the city by storm, and the French could then rely on the city's defenses. These consisted of the 33 km (21 mi) Thiers wall and a...   ... (English)
Belagerung von Paris (1870–1871) - Deutsch -> English  
Beleg van Parijs (1870-1871) - Nederlandse -> English  
Осада Парижа (1870) - Русский -> English  
Siège de Paris (1870-1871) - Français -> English  
Облога Парижа (1870) - Український -> English  
Assedio di Parigi (1870) - Italiano -> English  
Sitio de París (1870-1871) - Español -> English  
Setge de París - Català -> English  
by Panoramio
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