European heads of government were looking to establish long-lasting peace and stability on the continent after the defeat of Napoleon. A series of Vienna called the Congress of Vienna consisted of representatives from Europe's five great powers": Great Britain, France, Austria, Prussia, and Russia. The most influential representative by far was Prince Klemens von Metternich, the foreign minister of Austria.
We must restore Europe's monarchies!
We must prevent future French aggression by surrounding France with strong countries!
We must restore a balance of power, so no country can be a threat to others!
Despite their efforts to undo the French Revolution, the leaders at the Congress of Vienna could not turn back the clock. The Revolution had given Europe its first experiment in democratic government. Although the experiment had failed, it had set new political ideas in motion. The major political upheavals of the early 1800's had their roots in the French Revolution.
The rulers of Europe were nervous about the legacy of the French Revolution and the ideals of liberty, equality, and fraternity which might encourage revolutions elsewhere, The rulers of Russia, Prussia, and Austria signed the Holy Alliance which based their relations with other nations on Christian principles to combat forces of revolution. Finally, multiples alliances devised by Metternich, called the Concert of Europe ensured nations would help one another in any revolution.
We still can't reverse the clock to prevent the Revolution, guys, despite our efforts in stopping others.
We promise to help one another fight any revolution, right?
September 26, 1815, Paris, France
The Congress of Vienna left a legacy that would influence world politics for the next 100 years. The continent-wide efforts to establish and maintain a balance of power diminished the size and the power of France. At the same time, the power of Britain and Prussia increased. However, nationalism began to spread in Italy, Germany, Greece, and to other areas that the Congress had put under foreign control. Eventually, nationalistic feelings would explode into revolutions, and new nations would be formed. European colonies also responded to the power shift. Spanish colonies took advantage of the events in Europe to declare their independence and break away from Spain.
Spanish American colonies
We want independence. Our colony is strong on its own.