Europe 1814: Battle of Laon
In early March 1814 peace negotiations with Napoleon broke down, prompting the allies to pledge to unite in overthrowing him. At the same time, Napoleon maneuvered to defeat the Prussian and Russian armies invading northern France but was beaten back at Laon.
9–10 Mar 1814 Battle of Laon▲
In early March 1814 Prussian and Russian forces captured Soissons, but when Blücher led them against Napoleon a few days later, they were defeated in heavy battle at Craonne. Seizing this opportunity, Napoleon counterattacked Blücher at Laon in the early hours of 9 March, but it soon become clear that the allies greatly outnumbered the French (90,000 to 37,000). Unable to break through despite repeated attempts in the face of these odds, Napoleon withdrew the following day, having suffered 6,500 casualties.
9 Mar 1814 Treaty of Chaumont▲
Facing fruitless peace negotiations with Napoleon, Austria, Britain, Prussia, and Russia met in Chaumont to renew their alliance. On 9 March 1814, in a treaty dated to 1 March, the allies agreed not to negotiate separate peace with Napoleon and called for France to revert to its pre-revolutionary borders. Each of the powers also agreed to put 150,000 soldiers in the field against France and to guarantee the future European peace against French aggression for twenty years.