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This was probably plastered on every hoarding, kiosk, and post office wall in Germany, accompanied by hurrahs and flying of the ten day old Imperial flag and much wailing gnashing of teeth south of the border.

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Napoleon III had been a prisoner for almost five months,

but it would take over five months, a brutal siege, and the advice of an "observer", Gen. Phil "Scorched Earth" Sheridan, before the war actually ended with the Treaty of Frankfurt.

The victors. Note Louis III's bicorn hat under Wilhelm's horse's hoof.

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From the 1898 Baedeker:

The siege of Paris in 1870-71 ranks among the most remarkable occurrences in the annals of modern warfare. After the decisive battle of Sedan [near the border with Belgium where Napol?on III capitulated to the Prussians] the victorious German troops pushed forward to Paris without delay, while the Government of the National Defence made the most strenuous exertions to place the capital in a state of defence. Cattle and grain were sent into the city in immense quantities, the roads by which the Prussians would probably march were rendered impassable, and the arming of the forts and the Enceinte [the ramparts surrounding Paris] was proceeded with as rapidly as possible. The troops in Paris at the beginning of the siege numbered about 200,000 men, but of these only 60,000 or 70,000 were regular soldiers. The besieging force was composed of six army-corps under the Crown Prince of Prussia and the army of the Meuse under the Crown Prince of Saxony, the full strength of which consisted of 202,000 infantry, 34,000 cavalry, and 900 guns.

By 15 September 1870, the advanced guard of the Crown Prince's army was within 10 miles of Paris and on the 17th a pontoon bridge was thrown across the Seine at Villeneuve-St-George. After a short but severe contest at Sceaux Versailles was reached, and here a few days later, the German Headquarters were established. Meanwhile the army of the Meuse had occupied the ground on the right banks of the Seine and Marne, thus completing the investiture. The aim of the besiegers was the reduction of the city by famine, while the only course of defence practicable to the besieged was to pierce the investing lines and establish communication with the relief army on the Loire [where the French national government had fled in advance of the German armies].

[Numerous sorties attempting to break out of Paris were led between September and the end of December - each ultimately repulsed]

In the meantime the besiegers had decided on a general bombardment of the city ... and from 5 January 1871 onward an active cannonade was directed against the city from almost every point of its environment. The distress of the besieged now reached its climax. The hopelessness of the situation was recognized by all military authorities, but a final sortie was undertaken in deference to public opinion. The National Guards, who had hitherto been spared active service, took part in this sally, which was directed against Versailles, under cover of the guns of Mont Val?rien. The French were once more driven back, with immense loss, on 19 January.

Resistance was now at an end. On 23 January, Jules Favre went to Versailles to negotiate an armistice, which was arranged on the 28th of January. The following day the Germans were put in possession of the forts. The preliminaries of peace were concluded on 24 February and signed on 28 February. Part of the German army made a triumphal entry into Paris on 1 March, but was withdrawn in two days on the prompt ratification of the treaty of peace by the National Assembly at Bordeaux.

The Communard insurrection entailed a second siege of Paris (April - May), more disastrous than the first, followed by a fierce and sanguinary week of street-fighting. The Tuileries Palace, H?tel de Ville were burned, the Vend?me Column overthrown and many other public and private edifices more or less completely burned or ruined.

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