Most painful territorial losses

Aug 2009
5,429
Londinium
Did anyone mention the loss to Britain of the American colonies? There cannot have been a much more grievous loss of territory given how things turned out.
IIRC, this spurned the settlement of Australia and NZ so in terms of geographical territory it far from a net-loss, even if we compare the whole USA rather than 13 colonies. While "loosing" modern day America would've been a disaster, the value of the continent had yet to be truly understood so it wasn't deemed worthwhile pursuing, given the expenditure of the 7 years war previously I suspect it was enough for Canada to be secured both for access to trade commodities/routes (furs plus a possible NW passage) but also a refuge for Loyalists.

Certainly could have been considered an indirect loss to the French Royalists later down the line!
 
Likes: Futurist
This reminds me of the Louisiana purchase by the USA from Napoleon. Wasn't that also a bad loss to the French ?
No. Napoleon maybe could've sold it for more money, but that's really the only ''loss'' to it. The territory was unmaintainable and with it being an ocean away from France, thus being effectively cut off by the British blockade and far away from the action, it was not a very useful territory for Napoleon. He wanted money and he got it, I've also read a claim that he looked at it in a sense that a larger USA would present itself as more of a competitor to Britain and thus stretch Britain further. However I don't know how true this is.

Bottom line is: It wasn't that much of a ''loss'', let alone a crippling one. The territory was next to useless in wartime and not much came of it in peacetime. The actual valuable colony Napoleon lost was Haiti due to the economic losses and military casualties suffered from the attempts to retake it.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
19,926
SoCal
No. Napoleon maybe could've sold it for more money, but that's really the only ''loss'' to it. The territory was unmaintainable and with it being an ocean away from France, thus being effectively cut off by the British blockade and far away from the action, it was not a very useful territory for Napoleon. He wanted money and he got it, I've also read a claim that he looked at it in a sense that a larger USA would present itself as more of a competitor to Britain and thus stretch Britain further. However I don't know how true this is.

Bottom line is: It wasn't that much of a ''loss'', let alone a crippling one. The territory was next to useless in wartime and not much came of it in peacetime. The actual valuable colony Napoleon lost was Haiti due to the economic losses and military casualties suffered from the attempts to retake it.
It's actually pretty cool that a bunch of former slaves managed to defeat the French in Haiti. How'd they do it?

Also, Yes, Napoleon's main focus was on Haiti and on Europe--not on Louisiana.
 

martin76

Ad Honorem
Dec 2014
6,488
Spain
Lousiana not even was under French Control when was sold!!!

LA passed from Spain to US... and so to compare the "loss" of LA for France with the loss of Cuba for Spain.... it is a evidence History is not a science but a Cartoon...
 

MAGolding

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
2,842
Chalfont, Pennsylvania
Lousiana not even was under French Control when was sold!!!

LA passed from Spain to US... and so to compare the "loss" of LA for France with the loss of Cuba for Spain.... it is a evidence History is not a science but a Cartoon...
Technically control was officially passed from Spain to France on one day and then officially passed from France to the USA another day, at New Orleans and at St.Louis. And I have read that due to shortages of officials at least one person had to act as a representative of two different countries on two different days during the official change over ceremonies..
 

martin76

Ad Honorem
Dec 2014
6,488
Spain
Technically control was officially passed from Spain to France on one day and then officially passed from France to the USA another day, at New Orleans and at St.Louis. And I have read that due to shortages of officials at least one person had to act as a representative of two different countries on two different days during the official change over ceremonies..
Exactly.. I agree with you. It was the same day or three flags day... Another reason to understand that Louisiana meant nothing to France and to try to compare LA and France with Cuba and Spain ... is a joke.

I lived in France (both in Europe as in Seaborne)... LA meant nothing and not... LA is not a "French" Cuba... the "French" Cuba is Algeria.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
19,926
SoCal
@JeanDukeofAlecon Off-topic, but I have another question for you: Do you know why the Byzantines in the 12th century were interested in conquering Anatolia's southern coastline? After all, wasn't it much more Armenian than it was Greek/Roman? :



Or is the situation there in 1914 not an accurate representation of the relative demographic weight of the Armenians and Greeks/Romans in the 12th century? (Obviously there were much more Muslims in Anatolia in 1914 due to mass conversions. However, was the ratio of Greeks/Romans to Armenians in southern Anatolia the same in 1914 as it was in the 12th century?)
 
Jan 2016
1,137
Victoria, Canada
Ethnographic maps from the late 19th and early 20th centuries definitely shouldn't be used as primary sources for the ethnic composition of the region 7-800 years prior without extreme caution and scrutiny -- especially for the Armenians, who migrated into central-western Anatolia and even Europe in large numbers in the Ottoman period -- but I'm not aware of any which show the southern coast of Anatolia as having any significant Armenian presence, never mind being dominated by Armenians. The highlands of the Anatolian far east and Cilician Piedmont had an Armenian majority since the late-10th century or so, when the Roman government settled them there en masse on the formerly deserted borderlands, and this is reflected in your map, but the Anatolian coast west of Tarsus was Greek-speaking in the vast majority through the 12th century, and had been that way for over a millennium. Though they were no longer a majority by the 19th century, this is still reflected in your map, and, though I can't speak for its exact accuracy, even more in this similar map for 1913 or 14:

 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
19,926
SoCal
Ethnographic maps from the late 19th and early 20th centuries definitely shouldn't be used as primary sources for the ethnic composition of the region 7-800 years prior without extreme caution and scrutiny -- especially for the Armenians, who migrated into central-western Anatolia and even Europe in large numbers in the Ottoman period -- but I'm not aware of any which show the southern coast of Anatolia as having any significant Armenian presence, never mind being dominated by Armenians. The highlands of the Anatolian far east and Cilician Piedmont had an Armenian majority since the late-10th century or so, when the Roman government settled them there en masse on the formerly deserted borderlands, and this is reflected in your map, but the Anatolian coast west of Tarsus was Greek-speaking in the vast majority through the 12th century, and had been that way for over a millennium. Though they were no longer a majority by the 19th century, this is still reflected in your map, and, though I can't speak for its exact accuracy, even more in this similar map for 1913 or 14:

Your analysis here appears to be spot on. FTR, I should have had some-central Anatolia rather than southern Anatolia here. It's interesting that the Greek presence in southern Anatolia was more depleted than the Greek presence in northern Anatolia was by 1914. Was this due to conversions to Islam being more widespread in southern Anatolia than in northern Anatolia, or what?

BTW, it's interesting that, in 1265, the Armenian Kingdom in Cilicia (sp?) stretched much further west of Tarsus:



When did the Byzantines lose control of the territories immediately west of Tarsus? Was it in 1204 or even earlier than that, such as in the 1180s or 1190s?