Europe 1850: Humiliation of Olmütz
The Erfurt Union did not last long. In autumn the Electorate of Hesse, which formed the crucial bridge between Prussia's eastern and western possessions, went into revolt and the Elector called for support from the Diet of the German Confederation, the entity the Union had supposedly replaced. For a few months, forces of the Prussian-dominated Union and the Austrian-dominated Confederation faced off over Hesse, but in the end Prussia gave in, abandoning the Erfurt Union at the Treaty of Olmütz.
2 Jul 1850 Peace of Berlin▲
On 2 July 1850—one year after their armistice—the kingdoms of Prussia and Denmark signed a peace treaty in Berlin, ending the First Schleswig War between them. By the terms of the treaty, Prussia agreed to evacuate Schleswig and withdraw its officers from the Schleswig-Holstein army, thereby giving Denmark a free hand in the two duchies. Eight days later, the German Confederation completed the abandonment of the German revolutionaries in Schleswig-Holstein by signing its own peace treaty with the Danes.
12 Sep 1850 Hessian Constitutional Crisis▲
In September 1850 Elector Frederick William I of the Electorate of Hesse (Hesse-Kassel) suspended the liberal Hessian constitution of 1831 and imposed martial law to enforce his measures. However, the Hessian military, who had sworn an oath both to the elector and the constitution, refused to take sides by acting on his behalf. In response, the Elector called on the Federal Assembly of the German Confederation for support, despite being a member of the Erfurt Union.
28 Oct 1850 Warsaw Conference▲
As the September 1850 crisis in the Electorate of Hesse threatened its military roads to the Rhineland, Prussia began amassing troops on the Hessian border. When this move was denounced by Austria, Bavaria, and Württemberg, Tsar Nicholas I of Russia offered to mediate. Accordingly, in late October, representatives of Kingdom of Prussia, Austrian Empire, and Russian Empire met at Warsaw, where it was agreed that Prussia would withdraw its forces and troops of the German Confederation would restore order in Hesse.
1–8 Nov 1850 Bronnzell Incident▲
To enforce the decision of the Federal Assembly of the German Confederation, 25,000 Bavarian and Austrian troops entered the Electorate of Hesse at Hanau on 1 November 1850. The next day, in violation of the Warsaw Conference, Prussian troops invaded the electorate from the north and rapidly advanced south. The two forces met at Bronnzell on the 8th, but both sides quickly backed off and the only fatality of the clash was a 16-year-old gray horse.
29 Nov 1850 Punctation of Olmütz▲
In late November 1850 representatives of the Kingdom of Prussia, the Austrian Empire, and the Russian Empire met at Olmütz (Olomouc), Moravia, in the Austrian Empire, to resolve the Hessian Crisis. There they signed a treaty—the Punctation of Olmütz—in which Prussia, under pressure from the other two powers, agreed to evacuate the Electorate of Hesse and to participate in the revived German Confederation under Austrian leadership. The treaty was seen as a great humiliation in Prussia, which effectively had to abandon its attempts at German leadership through the Erfurt Union.