Revision Diary

1900-1914: Bosnian Crisis


Bosnian Crisis 1908-9.


Make sure you have detailed factual knowledge about AND HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT the following issues and topics:



1.  A description of the Bosnian Crisis.

2.  The effects of the Bosnian Crisis.







The Bosnian Crisis of 1908


    Background of tension & rivalry (esp Nationalism - esp 'Panslavism' - the belief that the little nations of the Balkans had the right to rule themselves - and alliances - esp Russia's alliance with Serbia)

    By the Treaty of Berlin (1878), Austria-Hungary had the right to occupy and administer Bosnia.

    Turkey was weak and corrupt - 'the sick man of Europe'.   In 1908 there was a revolution in Turkey.


    In 1908, Austria fully annexed Bosnia (i.e. it became part of the Austrian Empire).

    Serbia - which had been hoping to get part of Bosnia so it could have a port on the Adriatic Sea - protested.  Serbia called up its army demanded a strip of land across Bosnia to the Adriatic Sea. 

    Serbia was supported by Russia, Britain and France.

    Russia proposed a Conference.  

    Austria Hungary came to a separate agreement with Turkey, and said that a Conference wasn't necessary.   Austria was supported by Germany.


    There was an international crisis.   Germany threatened war.

    Russia and Serbia were forced to back down and humiliated.   Serbia was forced to issue a statement agreeing to Austria's annexation.

    The Kaiser boasted that he had stood by Austria 'in shining armour'.



Revision Focus

This is a Paper 1 topic, so concentrate on learning:

1.   WHAT happened

2.   EFFECTS/ Importance



e-book on the crises leading to WWI.



   How did international relations deteriorate?








Results of the Bosnian Crisis

1.   There was more trouble in the Balkans (Balkans War) in 1912-13.

     Caused the War?  

     Note that it is arguable the Bosnian Crisis was the main cause of the war.  

2.   Serbia was furious, because Bosnia included many Serbs whom it had hoped to rule.  This eventually led to the assassination at Sarajevo and the First World War.

3.   Russia called a European Conference, expecting support from France and Britain.   However, Britain and France did NOT support Russia, no conference took place, and Russia had to back down and abandon its ally Serbia (and was humiliated).   Russia vowed not to back down again.   This was a direct cause of Nicholas's disastrous decision to mobilise for war in 1914.

4.   Kaiser Wilhelm was proud that he had helped Austria 'in shining armour' against Serbia - so he did so again after Sarajevo (by giving Austria a 'blank cheque') and this was to be a direct factor in the slide to war in 1914.