The American War of Independence was a war between the North American colonies and Britain. Since the colonies had a different attitude towards Britain, war broke out among them. While the patriots supported the independence of the colonies, the loyalists remained loyal to the British king.

Initially, the colonies did not even want independence but demanded the repeal of regulations and taxes that were unfavourable to them.

As soon as Britain had won the Seven Years’ War with France, it set about enforcing its previously enacted but unenforced laws and transferring part of the debt accumulated during the war to the American colonies.

By the 1770s, tensions between the mother country and the colonies had come to the surface. After the Boston Tea Party (1773), representatives of the colonies founded the first Continental Congress in 1774. The British sent additional troops to the Americas to quell the discontent.

The war began with the Battle of Lexington on 19 April 1775. The patriot colonies signed the Declaration of Independence of the United States on 4 July 1776.

Throughout the conflict, Britain’s rivals gave support to the colonies. France entered into a formal alliance with the United States in 1778, after the major American victory at Saratoga (1777).

In the fighting, the British army took advantage of its naval superiority to occupy many coastal towns, but their relatively small land forces were unable to dominate large areas. The patriots were less trained and less effective than the British forces but the Americans outnumbered them. Furthermore, the British were not familiar with the area and terrain and had problems with the supply.

The war led to the American victory at Yorktown and disarming of the British forces in 1781.

The war ended with the signing of the Treaty of Paris in 1783 (the ‘Treaty of France’), and the United States of America was born.

Image by ErikaWittlieb from Pixabay

VOCABULARY

attitude – hozzáállás, vélekedés valamiről

break out – kitör

patriot – hazafi

loyalist – hűséges

regulation – szabályzás

enforce – törvényileg hatályosít

enact – törvényileg elfogad

accumulate – felhalmoz

tension – feszültség

troop – katonai csapat

quell – csillapít

discontent – feszültség, elégedetlenség

alliance – szövetség

superiority – felsőbbrendűség, valami felett áll

occupy – elfoglal

outnumber – mennyiségi értelemben túlszárnyal

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