Triple Entente

early 20th century alliance between France, Russia and the United Kingdom

The Triple Entente (English: Triple Agreement) was the name given to an alliance between the United Kingdom, France and the Russian Empire. The alliance was made after the Entente cordiale of 1904 and the Anglo-Russian Entente between Britain and Russia in 1907. The alliance was made stronger by agreements made with Japan, the United States and Spain. In this form, there was a balance of power, which meant that no group was much stronger than any other, with the "Triple Alliance" of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. If Italy was attacked by France she would have the help of the other two powers, and if France attacked Germany Italy would help Germany.

European military alliances in 1914. The Triple Alliance (1882) are in pink, the Triple Entente in grey and neutral countries in yellow.

With the First World War, these ententes were not military agreements - but they later involved the military because of the problems between the Triple Alliance and the Triple Entente. The Triple Entente became a military alliance. In 1915, Italy left the Triple Alliance, and from 1916 fought against Germany. The Russian revolution in October 1917 meant that Russia left the alliance, but the military alliance between France and the UK lasted until 1940, when Nazi Germany invaded France.

During World War I, Italy joined the Entente, declaring war against Austria–Hungary in May 1915, Turkey in August 1915, Bulgaria in October 1915, and Germany in August 1916. The alliance was expanded to create a multinational coalition, known as the "Allies".

This included: