7 Year War


The War of the 7 years was not specifically a type of war that occurred between two specific countries, however, it was a war of such international that occurred between the years of 1756 and 1763 and which involved some of the most important powers of the European continent reaching places outside its borders such as North America , Central America and South America.

  • When was it: From 1756 to 1763
  • Where it was: Both in Europe and in the colonies that European countries had in America , Africa , the Philippines and India

7-year war

The 7-year war was a series of different armed conflicts that occurred at the international level that involved the most important monarchies and the greatest world powers and that also included a series of political aspects for which they fought.


What was the 7-year war?

The 7-year war was an event that occurred due to the struggle that France and Great Britain had to acquire a series of possessions located in North America and other parts of the world. The British began the attack by showing that they would be the next world power. It was an armed conflict that favored the British who beat the French, thus ending the dominance of France over Europe , making the United Kingdom one of the most important powers in the world at the same time.


Historic context

The historical context of this conflict is related to the attempt by the Austrian Empire to recover the Silesian lands , mainly for economic reasons . This territory was under the power of Prussia and, before the attack, this kingdom decided to anticipate, attacking and invading the lands that were nearby in order to protect itself. This dispute between Great Britain and France caused a great number of armed conflicts in search of world supremacy among the powers of Europe.


Before the 7-year war, there had already been several struggles between the world powers of the time, and they were in a moment of territorial expansion with the aim of being able to include a greater number of colonies in their domains . At that time, Austria was ruled by Maria Theresa of Habsburg who in her plans had to conquer Silesia , a territory that was under the rule of Prussia . Austria was supported by powers such as Sweden and France while Prussia received support only from Great Britain .

When Prussia was surrounded, it decided to attack Saxony and this event was the one that originated the 7 Years’ War. This confrontation took place in various places and on different continents unfolding on three different fronts:

  • European front : when Prussia lost against Austria, they decided to attack, however, Frederick II , who was the king of Prussia at that time, managed to win several victories, however, he had to opt more for the defensive. Then, the Austrians tried again to attack together with the Russian army, losing the battle of Prussia. Later, Russia managed to take a part of Prussia. With the change of leaders, Russia decided to sign a peace agreement with Prussia, thus removing all the support they gave the Austrians.
  • American front : although most of the battles took place in Europe, in America there were also a series of conflicts, thus initiating the Franco-Indian war This war was between the French and the native Indians against the British and other Indians who supported them. The search for power in the colonies and the great rivalry that existed between the aboriginal tribes were the main reasons for the conflict.
  • Asian front : the war took place mainly in the territory of India where Great Britain and France had great confrontations mainly because the British sought to eliminate the influence of France in the Indians in order to completely control the market. Great Britain managed to win this conflict and thus acquired more areas, increasing its influence considerably.

The 7-year war ended thanks to the signing of the Treaty of Paris in which the return of several places by France to Great Britain was established, places that later were of great importance for the expansion of the industry and the positioning of the place as a world power. Spain for its part had to give Florida to England and obtained Havana in exchange. France returned the people of Louisiana to Spain and several regions were reintegrated to her by England that had been taken during the conflict.

Characteristics of the 7 years’ war

This war was characterized by confronting the great European powers that existed at the time, specifically in the years 1756 and 1763. Great Britain joined with Prussia to fight against the side established between France , Austria and their allies . In its beginnings, the conflict arose due to the desire that Austria had, mainly Queen Maria Teresa, to dominate the Silesian territories. They were two wars that occurred at the same time where France and England fought by sea while Prussia fought against Austria to the east side of Germany.

Featured Battles

Among the main battles that occurred during the 7-year war, the following are mentioned:

  • Battles of Austria : included the Battles of Hoyerswerda, Maxen, Torgau, and Meissen.
  • Battles of the Kingdom of Prussia : they carried out the Battles of Fehrbellin, Meissen, Neuensund and Hoyerswerda.
  • Battles of France : they participated in the Battle of Lutterberg and Rheinberg.
  • Battles of Gan Brittany : they were participants in the Battle of Rheinberg and Hastenbeck.


One of the main causes that originated the armed conflict was the Silesia region , as the Austrians wanted to recover the land while on the other hand, the Kingdom of Prussia struggled to continue to maintain control of the place. The power struggle motivated the conflict, mainly between the powers that existed during that time. The desire to control and dominate the lands that had already been colonized in other parts of the world such as India , Central America and North America were important causes that triggered the conflict.

Consequences of the 7-year war

The consequences that this armed conflict left in its wake were many, one of the main ones was the achievement of Great Britain to achieve supremacy and to declare itself as the dominant power in the world. He managed to obtain control of the places for which he fought, dominating countries outside his territory. On the other hand, Prussia also made its profits as it grew stronger and also became a power while maintaining control over Silesia.

The 7-year war was the one that caused the United States to prepare for the country’s independence , mainly due to the economic pressure exerted by the English people in the different North American colonies, a situation that was already weighing them down economically.

When France lost power, the ideals of equality that later caused the French Revolution began to be shown . The Treaty of Paris was signed and thanks to it the exchange of countries between France and Great Britain took place. Spain had to hand over the city of Florida to the English but it also managed to recover Cuba as well as some territories located in Central America.

Countries that participated

In this war, two different sides that were made up of several countries faced each other. These were:

  • Kingdom of Prussia : included Great Britain, Portugal and states that currently do not exist.
  • Kingdom of France : this side had the presence of the Russian Empire, Spain, Sweden, the Mongol Empire, the Archduchy of Austria and three other states that also disappeared.


The sides that fought during the 7-year war were two coalitions between different states. On the one hand there was the union between France, Austria, Russia, Sweden and Saxony ; on the other hand, he was on the side of Prussia and England .


Among the most recognized characters who participated and played an important role during the war, it is mentioned:

  • Frederick II of Prussia
  • Frederick William
  • George II of Great Britain
  • Louis XV of France
  • Maria Teresa I of Austria
  • Elizabeth I of Russia
  • Carlos III of Spain
  • Alamgir II of the Mongol Empire


The 7-year war was of vital importance for the world in general because thanks to it they were able to establish principles of equality that would later promote the French Revolution . Thanks to her, the revolution in the American colonies , especially in the United States, began their process of independence . It was through this conflict that the great world powers that we know today began to emerge .

7-year war in popular culture

In popular culture you can find some movies and books that tell the story and the events that happened in it. Some are:

  • Rubén Ygua’s Seven Years War .
  • Crucible of War: The Seven Years’ War and the Fate of the Empire in British North America by Fred Anderson.
  • The Seven Years’ War in Europe by Franz AJ Szabo.
  • The Last of the Mohicans , a film that is set in the war from the North American point of view.
  • The Pact of the Wolves , a film that refers to the conflicts that occurred during the conflict on the North American front.


Perhaps the most relevant curiosity of the 7-year war was that it did not take place in a specific place but, on the contrary, there were more than 70 different warlike conflicts that took place in different parts of the world. It was a war that made India, Central America, South America and North America fight.

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