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The Treaty of Paris, often called the Peace of Paris, or the Treaty of 1763, was signed on February 10, 1763, by the kingdoms of Great Britainmarker, Francemarker and Spainmarker, with Portugalmarker in agreement. It ended the Seven Years' War. The treaty marked the beginning of an extensive period of British dominance outside of Europe. Notably, the treaty did not involve either Prussia or Austria who signed a separate Treaty of Hubertusburg.
All the participants of the Seven Years' War.
Blue: Great Britain, Prussia, Portugal with allies.
Green: France, Spain, Austria, Russia, Sweden with allies.
While the bulk of conquered territories were restored to their pre-war owners, the British made some substantial overseas gains at the expense of France and, to a lesser extent, Spain. Preferring to keep Guadeloupe, France gave up Canada and all of its claims to the territory east of the Mississippi River to Britain. Spain ceded Floridamarker to the British, but later received New Orleansmarker and French Louisiana from the British; Manilamarker and Cubamarker were restored to Spain. France retained Saint Pierre and Miquelonmarker and recovered Guadeloupemarker, Martiniquemarker, and Saint Luciamarker in exchange for Dominicamarker, Grenadamarker, Saint Vincent and the Grenadinesmarker, and Tobagomarker going to the British. In India, the French lost out to the British, receiving back its "factories" (trading posts), but agreeing to support the British client governments, as well as returning Sumatramarker and agreeing not to base troops in Bengalmarker. The Mediterraneanmarker island of Minorcamarker was returned to British control, having been captured by the French at the outbreak of hostilities in Europe.

Britain returned the slave station on the isle of Goréemarker to the French, but gained the Senegal River and its settlements which had been captured in 1758. Britain agreed to demolish its fortifications in British Honduras (Belize), but received permission from Spain to keep a logwood-cutting colony there. Britain confirmed in the treaty the rights of its new subjects to practice the Roman Catholic religion and received confirmation of the continuation of the British king's Hanoverian right as a Prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire.

It is sometimes claimed that the British King George III renounced his claim to be King of France by the treaty. However, this is a historical myth, and it is also falsely attributed to some of the treaties of the French Revolutionary Wars. Such a renunciation is nowhere in the text of the treaty, and, in fact, George III continued to be styled "King of France" and used the fleurs-de-lis as part of his arms until 1801, when Britain and Ireland united. It was dropped then because the claim was regarded as anachronistic.

Louisiana question

The Treaty of Paris is frequently stated as the point at which France conveyed Louisiana Territory to Spain. However the transfer actually occurred in 1762 in the Treaty of Fontainebleau which was not publicly announced until 1764.

The Treaty of Paris was to give Britain the east side of the Mississippi (including Baton Rouge, Louisianamarker which was to be part of the British territory of West Florida). New Orleans on the east side remained in French hands (albeit temporarily). The Mississippi River corridor in what is modern day Louisiana was to be reunited following the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 and the Adams-Onís Treaty in 1819.

The 1763 treaty states in Article VII:

Quebec question

Article IV of the treaty provided protections for French in Canada and has been cited as the basis for Quebecmarker often having its unique set of laws that are different from the rest of Canada.

The article also provided for unrestrained emigration for 18 months from Canada. As a result many of the emigrants called Cajuns were to move to Louisiana to a region now called Acadiana which they thought was going to remain a possession of France—only to find out after they had moved that Louisiana had become a possession of Spain.

The article states:

Reaction

When John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute became Prime Minister in 1762, he pushed for a resolution to the war with France and Spain, fearing that Great Britain could not govern all of her newly acquired territories. In what Winston Churchill would later term a policy of "appeasement", Bute returned many French and Spanish colonies. Despite a desire for peace, many in the British parliament opposed the return of hard-fought gains. Notable among the opposition was former Prime Minister William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham, who warned that the terms of the treaty would only lead to further conflicts once France and Spain had time to rebuild. "The peace was insecure," he would later say, "because it restored the enemy to her former greatness. The peace was inadequate, because the places gained were no equivalent for the places surrendered."Members of parliament known to oppose the treaty were dismissed from offices, until it was certain to pass. When the treaty was approved in Great Britain, it passed 319 votes to 65 opposed.The Treaty of Paris took no consideration of Great Britain's battered continental ally, Frederick II of Prussia. Frederick would have to negotiate peace terms separately in the Treaty of Hubertusburg. For decades following the Seven Years War, Frederick II would consider the Treaty of Paris as a British betrayal.

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References

  1. "his Most Christian Majesty cedes and guaranties to his said Britannick Majesty, in full right, Canada, with all its dependencies, as well as the island of Cape Breton, and all the other islands and coasts in the gulph and river of St. Lawrence, and in general, every thing that depends on the said countries, lands, islands, and coasts, with the sovereignty, property, possession, and all rights acquired by treaty, or otherwise, which the Most Christian King and the Crown of France have had till now over the said countries, lands, islands, places, coasts, and their inhabitants" – Treaty of Paris, 1763




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