Publication date 28th February 2017
Talleyrand had arrived in London at a perilous moment. Revolution had broken out in Belgium, where the Belgians demanded independence from Holland to which they had been forcibly joined in 1815. The autocratic powers of Russia, Austria and Prussia threatened war to restore the status quo. It was largely thanks to Talleyrand’s diplomatic skills and his close collaboration with the British that the creation of Belgium as a constitutional monarchy was peacefully achieved. Talleyrand’s four years in London were the last and, in his own opinion, the most important of his diplomatic career. Linda Kelly’s sparkling narrative brings the period to life, providing a fascinating picture of one of Europe’s greatest statesmen as he appeared to English eyes.