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France actually took an active part in the Patriots' struggle, participating in a number of battles on the Patriot side. The French fleet provided bombardment of coastal towns to assist the Patriot land forces. They served alongside the Patriots in the sieges of Savannah and Yorktown in 1781. France and the United States entered into a formal alliance on 04 May 1778.
On 21 June 1779, Spain declared war on Great Britain after having made an alliance with France. Although they seemed to support the Patriots only because of their hatred for Britain, the Spanish government had provided secret funds to the Patriots, through the French, as early as 10 June 1776. Despite public denials, the Spanish government provided funding to the Patriot war effort. Supplies were obtained covertly from Luis de Unzaga, the governor of New Orleans in 1776 and his successor, the Count of Galvez in 1777. The king of Spain at the time, Charles III, hoped, by his alliance with France, to gain back certain of the territories lost in the Sevens Years War, including the Floridas.
On 19 April 1782 ,the Netherlands formally recognized the United States of America as a sovereign nation and accepted John Adams as an ambassador.
Catherine of Russia refused to get involved with either side during the conflict. She formed the League of Armed Nuetrality with Sweden, Prussia, Austria, Denmark and Sicily on 28 February 1780. The League announced to the Great Britain and the United States that beligerent actions against any trade vessels on the high seas would be met with resistance.
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