Treaty of Paris (1815)/Definitive Treaty

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DEFINITIVE TREATY, between Great Britain, Austria, Prussia and Russia, and France. — Signed at Paris, the 20th of November, 1815
The plenipotentiaries of the high powers who signed the treaty
The treaty and conventions (as were most treaties of the day) was written in French. This English translation is from British and Foreign State Papers, Volume 3 (1815–1816), published by the Great Britain Foreign and Commonwealth Office, 1838. It is one of several documents signed in Paris on 20 November 1815 to agree a comprehensive peace after the Waterloo Campaign of the Summer of 1815 and the final defeat of Napoleon Bonaparte. It built on the Paris Peace Treaty of the previous year.

Definitive treaty between Great Britain and France[1]

In the Name of the Most Holy and Undivided Trinity.

The Allied Powers having by their united efforts, and by the success of their arms, preserved France and Europe from the convulsions with which they were menaced by the late enterprise of Napoleon Bonaparte, and by the Revolutionary system reproduced in France, to promote its success;

Participating at present with his Most Christian Majesty in the desire to consolidate, by maintaining inviolate the Royal Authority, and by restoring the operation of the Constitutional Charter, the order of things which had been happily re-established in France, as also in the object of restoring between France and her Neighbours those relations of reciprocal confidence and goodwill which the fatal effects of the Revolution and of the system of conquest had for so long a time disturbed;

Persuaded, at the same time, that this last object can only be obtained by an arrangement framed to secure to the Allies proper indemnities for the past and solid guarantees for the future;

They have, in concert with His Majesty the King of France, taken into consideration the means of giving effect to this Arrangement; and being satisfied that the Indemnity due to the Allied Powers cannot be either entirely Territorial or entirely Pecuniary, without prejudice to France in the one or other of her essential interests, and that it would be more fit to combine both the modes, in order to avoid the inconvenience which would result, were either resorted to separately; their Imperial and Royal Majesties have adopted this basis for their present transactions; and agreeing alike as to the necessity of retaining for a fixed time in the Frontier Provinces of France, a certain number of Allied Troops; they have determined to combine their different arrangements, founded upon these bases, in a Definitive Treaty.

For this purpose, and to this effect, His Majesty the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, for himself and his Allies on the one part, and His Majesty the King of France and Navarre on the other part, have named their Plenipotentiaries to discuss, settle, and sign, the said Definitive Treaty, namely;

His Majesty the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the Right Honourable Robert Stewart Viscount Castlereagh, Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, a Member of his said Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, a Member of Parliament, Colonel of the Londonderry Regiment of Militia, and His said Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs;— and The Most Illustrious and Most Noble Lord Arthur, Duke, Marquess, and Earl of Wellington, Marquess of Douro, Viscount Wellington of Talavera and of Wellington, and Baron Douro of Wellesley, a Member of his said Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, a Field Marshal of his Armies, Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Horse Guards, Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, Knight Grand Cross of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath, Prince of Waterloo, Duke of Ciudad Rodrigo, and a Grandee of Spain of the First Class, Duke of Vittoria, Marquess of Torres Vedras, Count of Vimiera in Portugal, Knight of the Most Illustrious Order of the Golden Fleece, of the Spanish Military Order of St. Ferdinand, Knight Grand Cross of the Imperial Military Order of Maria Theresa, Knight Grand Gross of the Imperial Order of St. George of Russia, Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Black Eagle of Prussia, Knight Grand Cross of the Portuguese Royal and Military Order of the Tower and Sword, Knight Grand Cross of the Royal and Military Order of Sweden of the Sword, Knight Grand Cross of the Orders of the Elephant of Denmark, of William of the Low Countries, of the Annunciade of Sardinia, of Maximilian Joseph of Bavaria, and of several others, and Commander of the Forces of his Britannic Majesty in France, and of the Army of His Majesty the King of the Low Countries;

And his Majesty the King of France and Navarre, the Sieur Armand Emanuel du Plessis Richelieu, Duke of Richelieu, Knight of the Royal and Military Order of Saint Louis, and of the Orders of St. Alexander Newsky, St. Wladomir, and St. George of Russia, Peer of France, First Gentleman of the Chamber of His Most Christian Majesty, his Minister and Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and President of the Council of His Ministers;

Who, having exchanged their Full Powers, found to be in good and due form, have signed the following Articles:

ART. I. The Frontiers of France shall be the same as they were in the year 1790, save and except the modifications on one side and on the other, which are detailed in the present Article.

1st. On the Northern Frontiers, the Line of Demarcation shall remain as it was fixed by the Treaty of Paris, as far as opposite to Quiverain, from thence it shall follow the ancient limits of the Belgian Provinces, of the late Bishopric of Liege, and of the Duchy of Bouillon, as they existed in the year 1790, leaving the Territories included (enclavés) within that line, of Phillippeville and Manenbourg, with the Fortresses so called, together with the whole of the Duchy of Bouillon without the Frontiers of France.

From Villers near Orval upon the confines of the Department the Ardennes, and of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, as far as Perle, upon the great road leading from Thionville to Treves, the line shall remain as it was laid down by the Treaty of Paris.

From Perle it shall pass by Lanensdorff, Walwich, Schardorff, Niederveiling, Pelweiler, (all these places with their Banlieues or Dependencies remaining to France) to Houvre; and shall follow from thence the old limits of the District (Pays) of Sarrebruck, leaving Sarrelouis, and the course of the Sarre, together with the places situated to the righth of the line above described, and their Banlieues or Dependencies without the limits of France.

From the Limits of the District of Sarrebruck the Line of Demarcation shall be the same which at present separates from Germany, the Departments of the Moselle and of the Lower Rhine, as far as to the Lauter, which River shall from thence serve as the Frontier until it fills into the Rhine.

All the territory on the left bank of the Lauter, including the Fortress of Landau, shall form part of Germany. The town of Weissenbourg, however, through which that river runs, shall remain entirely to France, with a rayon on the left bank, not exceeding a thousand toises, and which shall be more particularly determined by the Commissioners who shall be charged with the approaching designation of the Boundaries.

2nd. Leaving the Mouth of the Lautcr, and continuing along the Departments of the Lower Rhine, the Upper Rhine, the Doubs and the Jura to the Canton de Vaud, the Frontiers shall remain as fixed by the Treaty of Paris. The Thalweg of the Rhine shall form the boundary between France and the States of Germany, but the property of the island shall remain in perpetuity, as it shall be fixed by a new survey of the Course of that river, and continue unchanged whatever variation that course may undergo in the lapse of time. Commissioners shall be named on both sides, by the High Contracting Parties, within the space of three months, to proceed upon the said survey. One half of the bridge between Strasbourg and Kehl shall belong to France, and the other half to the Grand Duchy of Baden.

3rdly. In order to establish a direct communication between the Canton of Geneva and Switzerland, that part of the Pays de Gex, bounded on the east by the lake Leman ; on the south, by the territory of the Canton of Geneva; on the north, by that of the Canton de Vaud; on the west, by the course of the Versoix, and by a Line which comprehends the communes of Collex-Bossy, and Meyrin, leaving the commune of Ferney to France, shall be ceded to the Helvetic Confederacy, in order to be united to the Canton of Geneva.

The line of the French custom-houses shall be placed to the West of the Jura, so that the whole of the Pays de Gex shall be without that Line.

4thly. From the frontiers of the Canton of Geneva, as far as the Mediterranean, the line of demarcation shall be that which in the year 1790, separated France from Savoy, and from the County of Nice.

The relations which the Treaty of Paris of 1814 had re-established between France and the Principality of Monaco, shall cease for ever, and the same relations shall exist between that Principality and His Majesty the King of Sardinia.

5thly. All the Territories and Districts included (enclavés) within the boundary of the French Territory, as determined by the present Article, shall remain united to France.

6thly. The High Contracting Parties shall name within three months after the signature of the present Treaty, Commissioners to regulate every thing relating to the designation of the Boundaries of the respective countries, and as soon as the labours of the Commissioners shall have terminated, Maps shall be drawn, and Land-marks shall be erected, which shall point out the respective limits.

ART. II. The Fortresses, Places, and districts, which, according to the preceding Article are no longer to form part of the French Territory, shall be placed at the disposal of the Allied Powers, at the periods fixed by the IXth Article of the Military Convention annexed to the present Treaty; and His Majesty the King of France renounces for himself his Heirs and successors for ever, the Rights of Sovereignty and property, which he has hitherto exercised over the said Fortresses, Places, and Districts.

ART. III. The Fortifications of Huninguen having been constantly an object of uneasiness to the Town of Bale, the High Contracting Parties, in order to give to the Helvetic Confederacy a new proof of their good will and of their solicitude for its welfare, have agreed among themselves to demolish the fortifications of Huninguen, and the French Government engages, from the same motive, not to re-establish them at any time, and not to replace them by other Fortifications, at a distance of less than that of 3 leagues from the Town of Basle.

The Neutrality of Switzerland shall be extended to the Territory situated to the north of a line to be drawn from Ugine, that town being included, to the south of the Lake of Annecy, by Faverge, as far as Lecheraine, and from thence, by the Lake of Bourget, as far as the Rhone, in like manner as it was extended to the Provinces of Chablais and of Faucigny, by the XCIId Article of the final Act of the Congress of Vienna.[2]

ART. IV. The pecuniary part of the Indemnity to be furnished by France to the Allied Powers, is fixed at the sum of 700 millions of Francs. The mode, the periods, and the guarantees for the payment of this sum, shall be regulated by a Special Convention, which shall have the same Force and Effect as if it were inserted, word for word, in the present Treaty.

ART. V. The state of uneasiness and of fermentation, which after so many violent convulsions, and particularly after the last catastrophe, France must still experience, notwithstanding the paternal intentions of Her King, and the advantages secured to every class of His Subjects by the Constitutional Charter, requiring, for the security of the neighbouring States, certain measures of precaution, and of temporary guarantee, it has been judged indispensable to occupy, during a fixed time, by a Corps of Allied Troops, certain military positions along the frontiers of France, under the express reserve, that such Occupation shall in no way prejudice the Sovereignty of His Most Christian Majesty, nor the state of possession, such as it is recognized and confirmed by the present Treaty.

The number of these troops shall not exceed 150,000 men. The Commander in Chief of this army shall be nominated by the Allied Powers. This army shall occupy the Fortresses of Condé, Valenciennes, Bouchain, Cambray, Le Quesnoy, Maubeuge, Laodrecies, Avesnes, Recroy, Givet, with Charlemont, Mezières, Sedan, Montmedy, Thionville, Longwy, Bitsch, and the Tête-de-Pont of Fort Louis.

As the maintenance of the army destined for this service is to be provided by France, a Special Convention shall regulate every thing which may relate to that object.

This Convention, which shall have the same force and effect as if it were inserted word for word in the present Treaty, shall also regulate the relations of the Army of Occupation with the Civil and Military authorities of the Country.

The utmost extent of the duration of this Military Occupation, is fixed at 5 years. It may terminate before that period, if, at the end of 3 years, the Allied Sovereigns, after having, in concert with His Majesty the King of France, maturely examined their reciprocal situation and interests, and the progress which shall have bean made in France in the re-establishment of order and tranquillity, shall agree to acknowledge that the motives which fed them to that measure have ceased to exist.

But whatever may be the result of this deliberation, all the Fortresses and Positions occupied by the Allied Troops shall, at the expiration of 5 years, be evacuated without further delay, and given up to his Most Christian Majesty, or to his Heirs and Successors.

ART. VI. The Foreign Troops, not forming part of the Army of Occupation, shall evacuate the French Territory within the term fixed by the IXth Article of the Military Convention annexed to the present Treaty.


ART. VII. In all Countries which shall change Sovereigns, as well in virtue of the present Treaty, as of the arrangements which are to be made in consequence thereof, a period of 6 years from the date of the exchange of the ratifications shall be allowed to the Inhabitants, Natives or Foreigners, of whatever condition and nation they may be, to dispose of their property, if they should think fit so to do, and to retire to whatever country they may choose.


ART. VIII. All the dispositions of the Treaty of Paris of the 30th of May 1814, relative to the Countries ceded by that Treaty, shall equally apply to the several Territories and Districts ceded by the present Treaty.

ART. IX. The High contracting Parties having caused representation to be made of the different claims arising out of the non-execution of the XIXth and following Articles of the Treaty of the 30th of May 1814, as well as of the Additional Articles of that Treaty signed between Great Britain and France, desiring to render more efficacious the stipulations made thereby, and having determined, by 2 Separate Conventions, the line to be pursued on each side for that purpose, the said 2 Conventions, as annexed to the present Treaty, shall, in order to secure the complete execution of the above-mentioned Articles, have the same force and effect as if the same were inserted, word for word, herein.

ART. X. All Prisoners taken during the hostilities, as well as all Hostages which may have been carried off or given, shall be restored in the shortest time possible. The same shall be the case with respect to the Prisoners taken previously to the Treaty of the 30th of May 1814, and who shall not already have been restored.

ART. XI. The Treaty of Paris of the 30th of May 1814, and the final Act of the Congress of Vienna of the 9th of June 1815, are confirmed, and shall be maintained in all such of their Enactments which shall not have been modified by the Articles of the present Treaty.

ART. XII. The present Treaty, with the Conventions annexed thereto, shall be ratified in one Act, and the Ratifications thereof shall be exchanged in the space of two months, or sooner, if possible.

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

Done at Paris this 20th day of November, in the year of our Lord 1815.

(Signed) (Signed)
(L. S.) Castlereagh. (L. S.) Richelieu.
(L. S.) Wellington.

Additional article on the slave trade[edit]

The High Contracting Powers, sincerely desiring to give effect to the measures on which they deliberated at the Congress of Vienna, relative to the complete and universal abolition of the Slave Trade, and having, each in their respective Dominions, prohibited without restriction their Colonies and Subjects from taking any part whatever in this Traffic, engage to renew conjointly their efforts, with the view of securing final success to those principles which they proclaimed in the Declaration of the 4th February, 1815, and of concerting, without loss of time, through their Ministers at the Courts of London and of Paris, the most effectual measures for the entire and definitive abolition of a Commerce so odious, and so strongly condemned by the laws of religion and of nature.

The present Additional Article shall have the same force and effect as if it were inserted word for word in the Treaty signed this day. It shall be included in the Ratification of the said Treaty.

In witness whereof, the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed the same, and have affixed thereunto the Seal of their Arms.

Done at Paris, this 20th day of November, in the year of our Lord, 1815.

(Signed) (Signed)
(L. S.)Castlereagh. (L. S.) Richelieu.
(L. S.)Wellington.

Notes[edit]

  1. The Stipulations of the Definitive Treaty between Austria, Prussia and Russia, and France, signed on the same day, were verbatim the same as those of this Treaty. (British and Foreign State Papers, p. 280)
  2. Some sources give this incorrectly as the 22nd not the 92nd Article

References[edit]

  • Great Britain Foreign Office. British and Foreign State Papers, Volume 3 (1815–1816), Great Britain Foreign and Commonwealth Office, 1838. pp. 280–292