It is often argued that the unification of Germany in 1871 was the inevitable result of the convergence of Prussian power and German nationalism. John Breuilly here shows that the true story was much more complex. For most of the nineteenth century Austria was the dominant power in the region. Prussian-led unification was highly unlikely up until the 1860s and even then was only possible because of the many other changes happening in Germany, Europe and the wider world.
Part One: Analysis. 1 Introduction. 2 From defeat to triumph, 1806-1815. 3 Cooperative Domination, 1815-48. 4 Austria and Prussia lose control, 1848-1849. 5 Counter-revolution, Cooperation and Conflict, 1849-1858. 6 From Cooperation to War, 1858-1866. 7 The Definitive Exclusion of Austria from Germany, 1867-1871. 8 Comparing Austria and Prussia. 9 Conclusion. Part Two: Documents. 1 End of Empire and formation of Rheinbund. 2 Peace of Tilsit between France and Prussia, 9 July 1807. 3 ‘A good revolution’: Hardenberg’s Riga Memorandum. 4 Peace of Schönbrunn between France and Austria, 14 October 1809. 5 Stein to Count Münster, 1 December 1812. 6 Convention of Tauroggen, 30 December 1812. 7 Ernst Moritz Arndt: ‘To the Prussians!’, January 1813. 8 Prussian introduction of universal conscription. 9 Frederick William III: ‘An Mein Volk’, 17 March 1813. 10 Kalisch Declaration of March 1813. 11 Metternich’s interview with Napoleon, Dresden, 16 June 1813. 12 Military forces at the Battle of Leipzig, October 1813. 13 Frederick William III promises a constitution, 22 May 1815. 14 German Confederal Act, 8 June 1815. 15 Vienna Final Act, 15 May 1820. 16 Petition for a single customs system, April 1819. 17 Customs union agreement between Prussia and the Grand Duchy of Hesse, February 1828. 18 Memorandum of Prussian Finance Minister Friedrich von Motz, 1829. 19 Metternich’s reaction to Prussian customs union policy, June 1831. 20 Prussia extends its influence through customs agreements, November 1831. 21 Paul Pfizer: On the aims and tasks of German liberalism, Tübingen, 1832. 22 Metternich’s response to the Hambach Festival, June 1832. 23 Austria and Prussia agree on repressive measures in Germany, August 1833. 24 Assessment of forward Prussian policy in Germany, June 1836. 25 Responses to the crisis with France, November 1840. 26 Popular song from the Rhine crisis of 1840. 27 Austrian fear of rising Prussian influence in Germany. 28 Radowitz’s memorandum on measures to be taken by the German Confederation, November 1847. 29 Offenburg programme of south-west German democrats, 10 September 1847. 30 Heppenheimer programme of the south-west German liberals, 10 October 1847. 31 Typical example of demands at the outset of revolution. 32 Blum and Jordan expressing different views on the Posen issue. 33 Creation of a provisional German authority. 34 Declaration by Heinrich von Gagern, 18 December 1848. 35 Reply by the Austrian Prime Minister, Prince Schwarzenberg, 28 December 1848. 36 Prussian circular to its envoys at the seats of the German governments, 23 January 1849. 37 Despatch from Schwarzenberg to Schmerling at the Reich Authority, 4 February 1849. 38 Extracts from the Imperial Constitution of March 1849. 39 Austrian Proposal concerning the Reich government, 8 March 1849. 40 Final Prussian rejection of the Imperial Constitution, 28 April 1849. 41 Erfurt Constitution, 28 May 1849. 42 Agreement between Bavaria, Saxony and Württemberg on the main principles for a revision of the confederal constitution, 27 February 1850. 43 Olmütz agreement between Austria and Prussia, 29 November 1850. 44 Bismarck’s speech to the Prussian Landtag on the Olmütz agreement, 3 December 1850. 45 Austrian idea of a central European Customs Union, June 1850. 46 Prussian hostility to Austria’s Customs Union plan. 47 Bismarck considers Austro-Prussian relations, 1856. 48 Austrian fears of a Prussian alliance with liberal nationalism, October 1859. 49 For or against Austria? Policy disputes in Berlin, March 1860. 50 Beust’s memorandum on Federal Reform, 15 October 1861. 51 Frankfurt Reform Act, 1 September 1863. 52 Response of the Prussian government to the Frankfurt Reform Act, 15 September 1863. 53 Resolution of Nationalverein on the Frankfurt Reform Act, 16 October 1863. 54 Resolution of Reform Verein on the Frankfurt Reform Acts, 28 October 1863. 55 Report of Rechberg to Franz Joseph, May 1864. 56 Bismarck to Werther (Vienna), 6 August 1864. 57 Gastein Convention between Austria and Prussia, 14 August 1865. 58 Austrian Manifesto of War, Emperor Franz Joseph, 17 June 1866. 59 Prussian Manifesto of War, King William, 18 June 1866. 60 Preliminary Peace of Nikolsburg, 26 July 1866. 61 King William addresses the legislature in Berlin after the victory over Austria, 5 August 1866. Guide to further reading. Bibliography. Index.
Each book in the Seminar Studies series provides a concise and reliable introduction to a wide range of complex historical events and debates, covering topics in British, European, US and world history from the early modern period to the present day. Written by acknowledged experts and including supporting material such as extracts from historical documents, chronologies, glossaries, guides to key figures and further reading suggestions, Seminar Studies titles are essential reading for students of history.
Almost half a century after its launch, the series continues to introduce students to the problems involved in explaining the past, giving them the opportunity to grapple with historical documents and encouraging them to reach their own conclusions. To submit proposals for new books in the Seminar Studies series, please contact the series editors:
Clive.Emsley: clive.emsley @ open.ac.uk
Gordon Martel: Gordon.Martel @ unbc.ca