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The Napoleon Series > Government > Governments and Politics

Treaty of Paris 1814

Two features of this treaty call for particular notice. (1) The territorial limits of France should be compared with those existing prior to 1789, those of various subsequent dates such as 1795 and 1810, and those which on different occasions during 1813 and 1814 were offered to Napoleon. (2) The stipulations relative to the congress which subsequently met at Vienna may be compared with those in the Treaty of Alliance between Great Britain and Russia and the arrangements effected by the Congress of Vienna. The negative features of the treaty may be profitably noticed.

A. Constitutional Statute.

May 30, 1814.

In the Name of the Most Holy and Undivided Trinity.

His Majesty, the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and his Allies on the one part, and His Majesty the King of France and Navarre on the other part, animated by an equal desire to terminate the long agitations of Europe, and the sufferings of Mankind, by a permanent Peace, founded upon a just repartition of force between its States, and containing in its Stipulations the pledge of its durability, and His Britannic Majesty, together with his Allies, being unwilling to require of France, now that, replaced under the paternal Government of Her Kings, she offers the assurance of security and stability to Europe, the conditions and guarantees which they had with regret demanded from her former Government, Their said Majesties have named Plenipotentiaries to discuss, settle, and sign a Treaty of Peace and Amity; namely,

  1. There shall be from this day forward perpetual Peace and Friendship between His Britannic Majesty and his Allies on the one part, and His Majesty the King of France and Navarre on the other, their Heirs and Successors, their Dominions and Subjects, respectively.

    The High Contracting Parties shall devote their best attention to maintain, not only between themselves, but, inasmuch as depends upon them, between all the States of Europe, that harmony and good understanding which are so necessary for their tranquility.

  2. The Kingdom of France retains its limits entire, as they existed on the 1st of January, 1792. It shall further receive the increase of Territory comprised within tile line established by the following Article:
  3. On the side of Belgium. Germany, and Italy, the Ancient Frontiers shall be re-established as they existed on the 1st of January, 1792, extending from tile North Sea, between Dunkirk and Nieuport to the Mediterranean between Cagnes and Nice, with the following modifications:

    . . . . . .

    France on her part renounces all rights of Sovereignty, Suzerainty, etc., and of possession, over all the Countries, Districts, Towns, and places situated beyond the Frontier above described, the Principality of Monaco being replaced on the same footing on which it stood before the 1st of January, 1792.

    The Allied Powers assure to France the possession of the Principality of Avignon, of the Comitat Venaissin, of the Comté of Montébliard, together with the several insulated Territories which formerly belonged to Germany, comprehended within the Frontier above described, whether they have been incorporated with France before or after the 1st of January, 1792.

    . . . . . .

  1. To secure the communications of the town of Geneva with other parts of the Swiss territory situated on the Lake, France consents that the road by Versoy shall be common to the two countries.*
  2. The Navigation of the Rhine, from the point where it becomes navigable unto the sea, and vice versa, shall be free, so that it can be interdicted to no one: —and at the future Congress attention shall be paid to the establishment of the principles according to which the duties to be raised by the States bordering on the Rhine may be regulated, in the mode the most impartial and the most favourable to the commerce of all Nations.

    The future Congress, with a view to facilitate the communication between Nations and continually to render them less strangers to each other, shall likewise examine and determine in what manner the above provisions can be extended to other Rivers which, in their course, separate or traverse different States.

  3. Holland, placed tinder the sovereignty of the House of Orange, shall receive an increase of Territory. The title and exercise of that Sovereignty shall not in any case belong to a Prince wearing, or destined to wear, a Foreign Crown.

    The States of Germany shall be independent, and united by a Federative Bond.

    Switzerland, Independent, shall continue to govern herself.

    Italy, beyond the limits of the countries which are to revert to Austria. shall be composed of Sovereign States.

  4. The Island of Malta and its Dependencies shall belong in full right and Sovereignty to His Britannic Majesty.
  5. His Britannic Majesty, stipulating for himself and his Allies, engages to restore to His Most Christian Majesty, within the term which shall be hereafter fixed, the Colonies, Fisheries Factories, and Establishments of every kind which were possessed by France on the 1st of January, 1792, in the Seas and on the Continents of America, Africa, and Asia; with the exception, however, of the Islands of Tobago and St. Lucia, and of the Isle of France and its Dependencies, especially Rodrigues and Les Séchelles, which several Colonies and possessions His Most Christian Majesty cedes in full right and Sovereignty to His Britannic Majesty, and also the portion of St. Domingo ceded to France by the Treaty of Basle, and which His Most Christian Majesty restores in full right and Sovereignty to His Catholic Majesty.
  6. His Majesty the King of Sweden and Norway, in virtue of the arrangements stipulated with the Allies, and in execution of the preceding Article, consents that the island of Guadaloupe be restored to His Most Christian Majesty, and gives up all the rights he may have acquired over that island.*
  7. Her Most Faithful Majesty, in virtue of the arrangements stipulated with her Allies, and in execution of the VIIIth Article, engages to restore French Guiana as it existed on the 1st of January 1792, to His Most Christian Majesty, within the term hereafter fixed.

    The renewal of the dispute which existed at that period on the subject of the frontier, being the effect of this stipulation, it is agreed that that dispute shall be terminated by a friendly arrangement between the two Courts, under the mediation of His Britannic Majesty.*

  8. The places and forts in those colonies and settlements, which, by virtue of the VIIIth, IXth and Xth Articles, are to be restored to His Most Christian Majesty, shall be given up in the state in which they may be at the moment of the signature of the present Treaty.

  9. His Britannic Majesty guarantees to the subjects of His Most Christian Majesty the same facilities, privileges, and protection, with respect to commerce, and the security of their persons and property within the limits of the British Sovereignty on the Continent of India, as are now, or shall be granted to the most favoured nations.

    His Most Christian Majesty, on his part, having nothing more at heart than the perpetual duration of peace between the two Crowns of England and of France, and wishing to do his utmost to avoid anything which might affect their mutual good understanding, engages not to erect any fortifications in the establishments which are to be restored to him within the limits of the British sovereignty upon the Continent of India, and only to place in those establishments the number of troops necessary for the maintenance of the police.*

  10. The French right of fishery upon the Great Bank of Newfoundland, upon the coasts of the island of that name, and of the adjacent islands in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, shall be replaced upon the footing on which it stood in 1792.*
  11. Those colonies, factories and establishments which are to be restored to His Most Christian Majesty or his Allies in the Northern Seas, or in the Seas on the Continents of America and Africa, shall be given up within the 3 months, and those which are beyond the Cape of Good Hope within 6 months which follow the ratification of the present Treaty.*
  12. The High Contracting Parties having, by the IVth Article of the Convention of the 23rd of April last, reserved to themselves the right of disposing, in the present Definitive Treaty of Peace, of the arsenals and ships of war, armed and unarmed, which may be found in the maritime places restored by the IInd Article of the said Convention, it is agreed that the said vessels and ships of war, armed and unarmed, together with the naval ordnance and naval stores, and all materials for building and equipment shall be divided between France and the countries where the said places are situated, in the proportion of two-thirds for France and on-third for the Power to whom the said places shall belong.

    Antwerp shall for the future be solely a Commercial Port.*

  13. The High Contracting Powers, desirous to bury in entire oblivion the dissensions which have agitated Europe, declare and promise that no individual, of whatever rank or condition he may be, in the countries restored and ceded by the present Treaty, shall be prosecuted, disturbed, or molested in his person or property, under any pretext whatsoever, either on account of his conduct or political opinions, his attachment either to any of the Contracting Parties or to any Government which has ceased to exist, or for any other reason, except for debts contracted towards individuals, or acts posterior to the date of the present Treaty.*
  14. The native inhabitants and aliens, of whatever nation and condition they may be, in those countries which are to change Sovereigns, as well in virtue of the present Treaty as of the subsequent arrangements to which it may give rise, shall be allowed a period of six years, reckoning from the exchange of the Ratifications, for the purpose of disposing of their property, if they think fit, whether acquired before or during the present War, and retiring to whatever country they may choose.*
  15. The Allied Powers, desiring to offer His Most Christian Majesty a new proof of their anxiety to arrest, as far as in them lies, the bad consequences of the disastrous epoch fortunately terminated by the present Peace, renounce all the sums which their Governments claim from France, whether on account of contracts, supplies, or any other advances whatsoever to the French Government, during the different Wars which have taken place since 1792.

    His Most Christian Majesty, on his part, renounces every claim which he might bring forward against the Allied Powers on the same grounds.*

  16. The French Government engages to liquidate and pay all debts it may be found to owe in countries beyond its own territory, on account of contracts, or other formal engagements between individuals, or private establishments, and the French authorities, as well for supplies, as in satisfaction of legal engagements.*
  17. The High Contracting Parties, immediately after the exchange of the Ratifications of the present Treaty, shall name Commissioners to direct and superintend the execution of the whole of the stipulations contained in the XVIIIth and XIXth Articles. These Commissioners shall undertake the examination of the claims referred to in the preceding Article, the liquidation of the sums claimed, and the consideration of the manner in which the French Government may propose to pay them.*
  18. The debts which in their origin were specifically mortgaged upon the countries no longer belonging to France, or were contracted for the support of their internal administration, shall remain at the charge of the said countries.*
  19. The French Government shall remain charged with the reimbursement of all sums paid by the subjects of said countries into French coffers, whether under the denomination of surety, deposit or consignment.*

    . . . . . .

  20. National domains acquired for valuable considerations by French subjects in the late departments of Belgium, and of the let bank of the Rhine and the Alps, beyond the ancient limits of France, and which now cease to belong to her, shall be guaranteed to the purchasers.*

    . . . . . .

  21. All the Powers engaged on either side in the present War, shall, within the space of two months, send Plenipotentiaries to Vienna, for the purpose of regulating, in General Congress, the arrangements which are to complete the provisions of the present Treaty.*
  22. The present Treaty shall be ratified, and the Ratifications shall be exchanged within the period of 15 days, or sooner if possible.*

In witness whereof, the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed and affixed to it the seals of their arms.

Charles Stewart, Lieut.-Genl.
Le Prince de Benevent.


Separate and Secret Articles between France and Great Britain, Austria, Prussia, and Russia.

Paris, 30 May 1814.

  1. The disposal of the territories given up by His Most Christian Majesty, under the IIIrd Article of the Public Treaty, and the relations from hence a system of real and permanent balance of power in Europe is to be derived, shall be regulated at the Congress upon the principles determined upon by the Allied Powers among themselves, and according to the general provisions contained in the following Articles.*
  2. The possessions of His Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty in Italy shall be bounded by the Po, the Tessino, and Lago Maggiore. The King of Sardinia shall return to the possession of his ancient dominions, with the exception of that part of Savoy secured to France by the IIIrd Article of the present Treaty. His Majesty shall receive an increase of territory from the State of Genoa. The Port of Genoa shall continue to be a Free Port; the Powers reserving to themselves the right of making arrangements upon this point with the King of Sardinia.

    France shall acknowledge and guarantee, conjointly with the Allied Powers, and on the same footing, the political organisation which Switzerland shall adopt under the auspices of the said Allied Powers, and according to the basis already agreed upon with them.*

  3. The establishment of a just balance of power in Europe requiring that Holland should be so constituted as to be enabled to support her independence through her own resources, the countries comprised between the sea, the frontiers of France, such as they are defined by the present Treaty, and the Meuse, shall be given up for ever to Holland.

    The frontiers upon the right bank of the Meuse shall be regulated according to the military convenience of Holland and her neighbours.

    The freedom of the navigation of the Scheldt shall be established upon the same principle which has regulated the navigation of the Rhine, in the Vth Article of the present Treaty.*

  4. The German territories upon the left bank of the Rhine, which have been united to France since 1792, shall contribute to the aggrandisement of Holland, and shall be further applied to compensate Prussia and other German states.*


Additional Articles between France and Great Britain

Paris, 30 May 1814.

  1. His Most Christian Majesty, concurring without reserve in the sentiments of His Britannic Majesty, with respect to a description of traffic repugnant to the principles of natural justice and of the enlightened age in which we live, engages to unite all his efforts to those of His Britannic Majesty, at the approaching Congress, to induce all the Powers of Christendom to decree the abolition of the Slave Trade, so that the said Trade shall cease universally, as it shall cease definitely, under any circumstances, on the part of the French Government, in the course of 5 years; and that, during the said period, no slave merchant shall import or sell slaves, except in the colonies of the State of which he is a subject.*

    . . . . . .



Andrews, Modern Europe, I, 89-90; Fyffe, Modern Europe, 1, 536-541 (Popular ed., 360-364); Rose, Napoleon, II, 401; Lavisse and Rambaud, Histoire Generale, X, 1-4.

And, *, British and Foreign State Papers, vol. 1. London: James Ridgway and Sons, 1812/14.


Placed on the Napoleon Series 8/00


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