The Crimean War (French: Guerre de Crimée; Russian: Кры́мская война́, romanized: Krymskaya voyna or Russian: Восто́чная война́, romanized: Vostochnaya voyna, lit. 'Eastern War'; Turkish: Kırım Savaşı; Italian: Guerra di Crimea) was a military conflict fought from October 1853 to February 1856 in which the Russian Empire lost to an alliance of the Ottoman Empire, France, Britain and Sardinia. The immediate cause involved the rights of Christian minorities in the Holy Land, which was a part of the Ottoman Empire. The French promoted the rights of Roman Catholics, while Russia promoted those of the Eastern Orthodox Church. The longer-term causes involved the decline of the Ottoman Empire and the unwillingness of Britain and France to allow Russia to gain territory and power at Ottoman expense. It has widely been noted that the causes, in one case involving an argument over a key, have never revealed a "greater confusion of purpose", yet they led to a war noted for its "notoriously incompetent international butchery".