Causes of the Crimean War: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Elizabeth Foster

Elizabeth has been involved with tutoring since high school and has a B.A. in Classics.

Would you want someone else coming into your country and telling you how you could treat different groups of people? Well, the Ottoman Empire didn't like that either, and that's how the Crimean War started. Learn all about it in this lesson.

Causes of the Crimean War

Imagine you're the king of a country. Now imagine that another king of a totally different country wants to barge in and tell you how you can treat your own people. Doesn't that sound silly? That other king should take care of his own people and let you take care of yours.

Well, that's exactly the argument that started the Crimean War. The Crimean War lasted from 1853 to 1856. To put that in context, it's a few years before the American Civil War. In the Crimean War, the Russian Empire fought against an alliance of the French Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the British Empire.

Europe during the Crimean War. The Crimean Peninsula is where the fighting happened.
Map of Europe

Tension in the Holy Land

We'll start with part of the Ottoman Empire, the Holy Land. Today, the Holy Land is the country of Israel. This part of the world is important to three different religions: Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. For hundreds of years, members of these three religions have been fighting over who gets to control the Holy Land.

At the time of the Crimean War, the Ottoman Empire controlled the Holy Land. Most people living in the Ottoman Empire and the Holy Land were Muslims, but there were also several different groups of Christians there.

That was a problem for the French and the Russians. People in France and Russia were mostly Christians, but they came from two different groups. People in France were mostly Roman Catholics, while people in Russia were mostly Eastern Orthodox. The French wanted to control the Holy Land so they could make sure all the Roman Catholics were safe. The Russians wanted to control the Holy Land so they could make sure all the Eastern Orthodox people were safe. Meanwhile, the Ottoman Empire didn't want either of them butting in.

Riot in Bethlehem

In 1853, there was a riot in the town of Bethlehem. Bethlehem is part of the Holy Land, and it's a very important city for all Christians. In the riots, some Orthodox monks got in a fight with some French monks. So now France and Russia were angry at each other.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support 福建福彩网 临海市 湖北省 钟祥市 大同市 兰溪市 湘潭市 松滋市 铁力市 彭州市 厦门市 宜春市 邹城市 彭州市 山东省 金昌市 平度市 海南省 双滦区 忻州市 葫芦岛市 十堰市 平度市 潞城市 临沂市 阜新市 普兰店市 汉川市 兴城市 都匀市 枣庄市 安达市 烟台市 高邮市 梅河口市 江油市 白银市 丰城市 孝义市 石首市 池州市 葫芦岛市 福建省 金华市 梅河口市 胶州市 上虞市 大石桥市 江阴市 吉首市 大庆市 铁力市 深州市 山西省 厦门市 项城市 永州市 原平市 明光市 耒阳市