Unification of Germany

German unificationunificationunified GermanyGermanyGerman Wars of Unificationunified1871Wars of Unificationnational unificationunification of the German states
The unification of Germany into a politically and administratively integrated nation state officially occurred on 18 January 1871, in the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles in France.wikipedia
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Kingdom of Prussia

PrussiaPrussianPrussian court
Princes of the German states, excluding Austria, gathered there to proclaim William I of Prussia as German Emperor after the French capitulation in the Franco-Prussian War. They ranged in size from the small and complex territories of the princely Hohenlohe family branches to sizable, well-defined territories such as the Kingdoms of Bavaria and Prussia.
It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918.

Franco-Prussian War

Franco-German WarWar of 1870Franco Prussian War
Princes of the German states, excluding Austria, gathered there to proclaim William I of Prussia as German Emperor after the French capitulation in the Franco-Prussian War.
Lasting from 19 July 1870 to 28 January 1871, the conflict was caused by Prussian ambitions to extend German unification and French fears of the shift in the European balance of power that would result if the Prussians succeeded.

Napoleonic Wars

Napoleonic WarNapoleonicwar with France
The self-interests of the various parties hampered the process over nearly a century of autocratic experimentation, beginning in the era of the Napoleonic Wars, which prompted the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, and the subsequent rise of German nationalism.
The Holy Roman Empire was dissolved, and the philosophy of nationalism, that emerged early in the war, greatly contributed to the later unification of the German states, and those of the Italian peninsula.

Austro-Prussian War

War of 1866Seven Weeks' WarAustro-Prussian
Second, the unification of Italy provided Prussia an ally against Austria in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866.
The major result of the war was a shift in power among the German states away from Austrian and towards Prussian hegemony, and impetus towards the unification of all of the northern German states in a Kleindeutsches Reich that excluded the German Austria.

Otto von Bismarck

BismarckChancellor BismarckPrince Bismarck
Historians debate whether Otto von Bismarck—Minister President of Prussia—had a master plan to expand the North German Confederation of 1866 to include the remaining independent German states into a single entity or simply to expand the power of the Kingdom of Prussia.
At this stage in his career, he opposed the unification of Germany, arguing that Prussia would lose its independence in the process.

Germans

Germanethnic Germanethnic Germans
The negotiators at Vienna took no account of Prussia's growing strength within and among the German states and so failed to foresee that Prussia would rise to challenge Austria for leadership of the German peoples.
These terms came to a sudden halt following the Revolutions of 1848 and the Crimean War in 1856, paving the way for German unification in the 1860s.

Carlsbad Decrees

Karlsbad DecreesTreaty of Frankfurt, 1819Carlsbad
Agitation by student organizations led such conservative leaders as Klemens Wenzel, Prince von Metternich, to fear the rise of national sentiment; the assassination of German dramatist August von Kotzebue in March 1819 by a radical student seeking unification was followed on 20 September 1819 by the proclamation of the Carlsbad Decrees, which hampered intellectual leadership of the nationalist movement.
They were aimed at quelling a growing sentiment for German unification and were passed during ongoing Hep-Hep riots which ended within a month after the resolution was passed.

Kingdom of Bavaria

BavariaBavarianKing of Bavaria
They ranged in size from the small and complex territories of the princely Hohenlohe family branches to sizable, well-defined territories such as the Kingdoms of Bavaria and Prussia.
With the unification of Germany into the German Empire in 1871, the kingdom became a federal state of the new Empire and was second in size, power, and wealth only to the leading state, the Kingdom of Prussia.

Borussian myth

Borussian'' myth
This interpretation became a key building block of the Borussian myth expounded by the pro-Prussian nationalist historians later in the 19th century.
The Borussian myth or Borussian legend is the name given by 20th-century historians of German history to the earlier idea that German unification was inevitable, and that it was Prussia's destiny to accomplish it.

German Reich

GermanyReichDeutsches Reich
After the Unification of Germany, under the reign of the Prussian king Wilhelm I and his Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, the historic German states (e.g. Bavaria and Saxony) were united with Prussia under imperial rule, by the Hohenzollern dynasty.

Burschenschaft

Burschenschaftenfraternitystudent fraternity
The Burschenschaft student organizations and popular demonstrations, such as those held at Wartburg Castle in October 1817, contributed to a growing sense of unity among German speakers of Central Europe.
They were significantly involved in the March Revolution and the unification of Germany.

Erfurt

Erfurt, GermanyKühnhausenBindersleben
After the Unification of Germany in 1871, Erfurt moved from the southern border of Prussia to the centre of Germany, so the fortifications of the city were no longer needed.

North German Confederation

North German FederationGermanyState
Historians debate whether Otto von Bismarck—Minister President of Prussia—had a master plan to expand the North German Confederation of 1866 to include the remaining independent German states into a single entity or simply to expand the power of the Kingdom of Prussia.

German Empire

GermanyGermanImperial Germany
Princes of the German states, excluding Austria, gathered there to proclaim William I of Prussia as German Emperor after the French capitulation in the Franco-Prussian War.
The German Empire (Deutsches Kaiserreich, officially Deutsches Reich), also known the "Second Reich" or Imperial Germany, was the German nation state that existed from the unification of Germany in 1871 until the abdication of Emperor Wilhelm II in 1918.

Prussia

PrussianPrussian statePrussian army
Historians debate whether Otto von Bismarck—Minister President of Prussia—had a master plan to expand the North German Confederation of 1866 to include the remaining independent German states into a single entity or simply to expand the power of the Kingdom of Prussia. Economically, the creation of the Prussian Zollverein (customs union) in 1818, and its subsequent expansion to include other states of the German Confederation, reduced competition between and within states.
The two decades after the unification of Germany were the peak of Prussia's fortunes, but the seeds for potential strife were built into the Prusso-German political system.

Frankfurt

Frankfurt am MainFrankfurt, GermanyFrankfurt-am-Main
The Congress established a loose German Confederation (1815–1866), headed by Austria, with a "Federal Diet" (called the Bundestag or Bundesversammlung, an assembly of appointed leaders) that met in the city of Frankfurt am Main.
Some like Nordend and Westend arose during the rapid growth of the city in the Gründerzeit following the Unification of Germany, while others were formed from territory which previously belonged to other city district(s), such as Dornbusch and Riederwald.

World War I

First World WarGreat WarWorld War One
One school of thought, which emerged after The Great War and gained momentum in the aftermath of World War II, maintains that the failure of German liberals in the Frankfurt Parliament led to bourgeoisie compromise with conservatives (especially the conservative Junker landholders), which subsequently led to the so-called Sonderweg (distinctive path) of 20th-century German history.
Victory in the 1866 Austro-Prussian War established Prussian hegemony in Germany, while victory over France in the 1870–1871 Franco-Prussian War unified the German states into a German Reich under Prussian leadership.

Adolphe Thiers

ThiersLouis Adolphe ThiersLouis-Adolphe Thiers
The new Chancellor of Prussia, Otto von Bismarck, saw France as the main obstacle to German unification under Prussia.

House of Hohenzollern

HohenzollernHohenzollernsHohenzollern dynasty
These lands (or parts of them—both the Habsburg domains and Hohenzollern Prussia also included territories outside the Empire structures) made up the territory of the Holy Roman Empire, which at times included more than 1,000 entities.
The Kingdom of Prussia was created in 1701, eventually leading to the unification of Germany and the creation of the German Empire in 1871, with the Hohenzollerns as hereditary German Emperors and Kings of Prussia.

St. Augustine's Monastery (Erfurt)

St. Augustine's MonasteryAugustinian monasteryAugustinerkloster
The unification of Germany did not happen until 1871.

German General Staff

General StaffChief of the General StaffGeneralstab
Meanwhile, Helmuth von Moltke had become chief of the Prussian General Staff in 1857, and Albrecht von Roon would become Prussian Minister of War in 1859.
The Prussian General Staff also enjoyed greater freedom from political control than its contemporaries, and this autonomy was enshrined in law on the unification of Germany and the establishment of the German Empire in 1871.

Napoleon III

Napoléon IIILouis NapoleonNapoleon III of France
At a meeting in Biarritz in September 1865 with Napoleon III, Bismarck had let it be understood (or Napoleon had thought he understood) that France might annex parts of Belgium and Luxembourg in exchange for its neutrality in the war.
In the 1860s, a new rival to French power in Europe appeared on the horizon; Prussia, and its chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, who had ambitions for Prussia to lead a unified Germany.

Pan-Germanism

pan-GermanGreater GermanyPan-Germanist
By 1862, when Bismarck made his speech, the idea of a German nation-state in the peaceful spirit of Pan-Germanism had shifted from the liberal and democratic character of 1848 to accommodate Bismarck's more conservative Realpolitik.
Pan-Germanism was highly influential in German politics in the 19th century during the unification of Germany when the German Empire was proclaimed as a nation-state in 1871 but without Austria (Kleindeutsche Lösung/Lesser Germany), and the first half of the 20th century in the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the German Empire.

Napoleon

Napoleon BonaparteNapoleon INapoleon I of France
The War of the Second Coalition (1799–1802) resulted in the defeat of the imperial and allied forces by Napoleon Bonaparte.
He dissolved the Holy Roman Empire prior to German Unification later in the 19th century.

German nationalism

German nationalistGerman nationalistsnationalist
The self-interests of the various parties hampered the process over nearly a century of autocratic experimentation, beginning in the era of the Napoleonic Wars, which prompted the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, and the subsequent rise of German nationalism.