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A History of the Nineteenth Century, Year by Year

Sidenote Death of Hauff In Wurtemberg


[Sidenote:

Dissatisfaction in France]

In France, the government of Charles X., after some violent attacks in the Chambers, recalled the Swiss brigade sent to protect the royal family in Madrid. There was trouble enough at home. The clerical reaction in France brought about a popular outcry against the order of the Jesuits. On the occasion of a royal military review on April 29, some of the companies of the National Guards shared in demonstrations against them. "I am here," said the King, "to receive your homage, not your murmurings." The entire National Guard of Paris was disbanded by royal ordinance.

[Sidenote: Russians invade Persia]

Early in the spring the Russian forces under Paskievitch had crossed the Araxes and forced the defiles of the Persian frontier. By a rapid flank movement an army of 10,000 Persians was detached and brought to surrender. Erivan, the bulwark of Persia, was taken by assault. The triumphant Russian column entered Pauris, the second city of the kingdom. Thence an advance was made on Teheran.

[Sidenote: Intervention in Greece favored]

These easy victories in Persia left the Czar free to resume his threatening attitude toward Turkey. In this he received the hearty support of Canning. A protocol at St. Petersburg, concluded between the Duke of Wellington and Nesselrode, formed the basis for Anglo-Russian

intervention in the East. The royalists of France were won over by an offer from the Greek insurgents to place the Duke of Nimours on the throne of Greece. Without giving actual support to the proposed intervention the French ambassador in Constantinople was instructed to act with his English and Russian colleagues. Under the weight of this combination even Prince Metternich gave way.

Affairs in Germany were calculated to excite his alarm. At Dresden the accession of Anthony Clement to the crown of Saxony met with extreme disfavor on the part of the Saxon people by reason of Anthony's pronounced Catholicism. Soon his measures provoked a rising of the people. Anthony had to resign, and Frederick Augustus II. became regent.

[Sidenote: Death of Hauff]

In Wurtemberg, where public affairs had taken a more liberal turn, the death of Wilhelm Hauff, the young author, was felt as a great loss. Hauff died in his twenty-fifth year, while still in the first promise of his literary activity. His stories of the Black Woods and his Oriental Tales, together with his medieval romance "Lichtenstein," modelled after the best of Walter Scott's romances, have assured him a prominent place in German letters.

[Sidenote: Laplace]

[Sidenote: The nebular hypothesis]

On March 15, Marquis Pierre Simon de Laplace, one of the greatest mathematicians and physical astronomers of all time, died at Arcueil. Laplace was born in 1749, in Normandy. Although a poor farmer's son, he soon won the position of a teacher at the Beaumont Military School of Mathematics, and later at the Ecole Militaire of Paris. One of the early notable labors of Laplace was his investigation of planetary perturbations, and his demonstration that planetary mean motions are invariable--the first important step in the establishment of the stability of the solar system and one of the most brilliant achievements in celestial mechanics. In his "Exposition du Systeme du Monde" was formulated the theory called the "nebular hypothesis," the glory of which he must share with Kant. "He would have completed the science of the skies," says Fourier, "had the science been capable of completion." As a physicist he made discoveries that were in themselves sufficient to perpetuate his name, in specific heat, capillary action and sound. In mathematics he furnished the modern scientist with the famous Laplace co-efficients and the potential function, thereby laying the foundation of the mathematical sciences of heat and electricity. Not satisfied with scientific distinction, Laplace aspired to political honors and left a public record which is not altogether to his credit. Of his labors as Minister of the Interior, Napoleon remarked: "He brought into the administration the spirit of the infinitesimals." Although he owed his political success, small as it was, to Napoleon--the man whom he had once heralded as the "pacificator of Europe"--he voted for his dethronement.


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