Siege of Ancona
|Siege of Ancona|
|Part of the Neapolitan War|
|Casualties and losses|
500 killed or wounded|
Siege of Ancona was a battle in the Neapolitan War. It took place beginning on the 5th May 1815 and persisted until the 30th May 1815. The battle took place mere days after the Battle of Tolentino on the 3rd May 1815.
The siege of Ancona was one of the last battles in Italy during the Neapolitan War. The city of Ancona was the last major Italian city to surrender. It was fought between Napoleon’s forces in Ancona, Italy and the Anglo-Austrian alliance during the One Hundred Days’ campaign. The Anglo-Austrian alliance eventually defeated Napoleon’s forces, thus helping expel the French from Eastern Italy. It also contributed to the elimination of the Buonaparte monarchy proposed by Murat and led to the establishment of the Papal state.
An Austrian force commanded by Austrian Major General Menrad Freiherr von Geppert besieged Ancona on the 5th May 1815. The Anglo-Austrian force was 2,300 men strong. Ancona was defended by a garrison of Napoleon’s troops, which was composed of 1,500 men. This garrison had been part of Caracossa’s brigade, which fought in the Battle of Tolentino. The French lost 500 men to the Anglo-Austrian bombardment before they ultimately surrendered on the 30th of May.
The siege of Ancona cemented the loss of Napoleon’s forces in Italy. Ancona was the last major Italian city to surrender to the Austrians, and the battle came shortly before the downfall of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo.
As a result of the expulsion of the French, there arose a power vacuum in Italy. The Italians adamantly refused to support anyone who came in the name of Napoleon. Unification of Italy was Murat’s ideal. Murat was and Italian prince who supported Napoleon’s bid for power in Italy. As a result of anti-Napoleon sentiment, Murat’s attempt to instate a Buonaparte monarchy even after the defeat of Napoleon failed to gain traction. His attempt to establish a monarchy in Italy was rejected, and the Buonaparte royalty was completely deposed by the English in Naples at the same time as the end of the siege on Ancona; the 30th May, 1815. Murat had earlier been defeated in battle by the Austrians on the 3rd May 1815 at Tolentino. Unfortunately, this meant that the constitution he proposed before his defeat never took hold. However, his ideals of an independent Italy played a role in the Risorgimento, decades later.
The elimination of the Bourbon influence in Italy after the siege of Ancona paved the way for the Papal state that took power in 1814. The Papal state supported a policy of conservatism in Italy, upholding Austrian influence and opposing revolution and unification. Due to this conservative policy, the Papal state hindered the unification of Italy for many years. The administration of the Papal state was in place until the overthrow of Metternich in 1848.
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