It's 1814/15 and you're a diplomat at the Congress of Vienna.
How do you redraw the borders of Europe so that there's lasting peace and stability?
Would you change anything from how the borders were redrawn in our timeline or would you leave it as they did it?
Hard mode: only list changes that would've been realistic and wouldn't have instantly caused another war
Actually punish France, give bordering alsace to confed. Enlarge russian gains in Poland.
>Actually punish France
how so, apart from the loss of Alsace?
>give bordering alsace to confed.
would you turn it into its own state with a monarch or would you give it to some German state like neighboring Baden?
>Enlarge russian gains in Poland.
that's actually what they wanted and would've got nearly. Russia had occupied the entirety of the Duchy of Warsaw by 1814, Prussia only got Posen back after the negotiations
or would you give them Austrian Galicia?
neither Poland nor Greece were independent at the time
Those are some god-tier maps, just saying.
>Actually punish France
Reminder that France paid harsher reparations (in relation to GDP) after the Napoleonic Wars than Germany did after WW1
I'd just do everything in my power to stop Poland and Greece from ever becoming independent.
Prussia doesn't get Rhineland-Westphalia but get all of Saxony
Rhineland-Westphalia becomes a separate German state within the Confederation, perhaps under the dynasty that ruled in Saxony.
This alone might prevent the Franco-Prussian war and with that WW1 and 2 in their current form, further down the line.
>Prussia no longer has a direct border with France
>Prussia has lees incentive to support the customs union and generally any further German unification as it doesn't have those possessions in the opposite side of the Confederation
>Prussia is deprived of a major future industrial base and the strategic axis of the Rhine
Pic related isn't accurate, it's just an attempt.
Really bad choice of color in North German.
But anyway Prussia remains a smaller, less significant state in North-East Germany.
this was actually on the table, Prussia wanted all of Saxony but was compensated with the Rhineland, which they weren't happy about but turned out great later when industrialization happened. Do you think creating a separate Rhenish state under the Saxon dynasty would make it more vulnerable to French aggression? Or how do you think it would affect the German Confederation at all? Would it ensure Austrian domination isn't rivalled by Prussia?
It would definitely make Prussia weaker and less ambitious. It would stay its own large, but not too large, distinct German Protestant realm in North-East Germany. Also it might even be so inclined to intervene against France. The Rhineland is no longer their concern, they might even support France if their interests align.
As for the Rhineland, it would probably have to forge an alliance with other anti-French powers, perhaps Netherlands and UK. And Austria will likely remain the dominant force in the Confederation.
I find it really interesting, because I read/heard in a podcast that Prussia was indeed very keen on getting all of Saxony and the Rhineland was more of a reimbursement really, so this seems like it was an actual possibility
I wonder how that change would've affected the German Confederation, it's ability to resist French aggression during the Rhine crisis 1840 or under Napoleon III, and how it would've affected the road to German unification, like in 1848
>binland. poland, caucasus, parts of romania
vatnikkers would chimp out
pretty sure he labelled them as semi-automous parts of the Russian Empire, which they were in 1815, see the map in the OP
Poor choice of color
Finland and Poland are a different shade of green to show they are technically separate states, in personal union with Russia. They still are de facto Russian
The weakened Prussia would likely have led to a successful liberal uprising in 1848 and unified much of Germany under a revolutionary liberal government rather than the Prussian Monarchy. Although Prussia might have not been a part of this union were that the case and depending on how things turn out in Austria the German parts of it might have.
Austria actually rejected the liberal constitution before Prussia
so what might have happened is having 3 German states: Prussia, Austria, and a Germany under thre Frankfurt constitution, basically with the borders of later West Germany
If Dutchoids had done their job properly and forcibly converted Walloons to Dutch I wouldn't be suffering in an absolute joke of a ''country'' right now
Complete dissection of the heathen Turks.
The Congress was a remarkable success that limited war in Europe for a century. There is no need to improve it.
>The Congress was a remarkable success that limited war in Europe for a century.
>There is no need to improve it.
of course there was room for improvement
some things that were on the table:
- actually punishing France
- different territorial changes, e.g. giving Saxony instead of the Rhineland to Prussia
- how Germany would be reorganized (German Confederation or something else)
- how Italy would be reorganized (Austria wanted an Italian Confederation akin to the German Confederation)
- more territorial gains for Russia
Punishing France would not lead to greater/longer peace. France was a second fiddle great power as it was for that century. Any weakening of France further subordinates them to British influence, in the same way a united Germany subordinated Austria-Hungary. The way it worked out, France and Britain had an antagonistic but mutually beneficial relationship. France didn't challenge Britain at sea, and Britain was content for France to be the continental kingpin. A weaker France in this means a state propped up against Germanic threats by the British, which would subordinate France to the degree that they would cease to be necessarily independent. This would fundamentally unbalance Europe, as this would require an anti Franco-British coalition to counter, which Austria and Prussia would form, with Russia opportunistically benefitting from it.
This process would be far from instant, but an incident such as the Crimean war or intervention in Italy would almost certainly spark a general European war.
The near century of no general Great Power wars was a damn near miracle, not to be repeated until the advent of MAD (and still has not broken that record). I seriously doubt that major revisions could be made to preserve peace for longer.
>Britain was content for France to be the continental kingpin
No it wasn't, Britain had just fought France for decades to STOP them from becoming the continental kingpin. It's just that France was no longer capable of being the continental kingpin, instead it was the Germans who were the closest to that position, and therefore the Anglos allied with the French against the Germans.
There is a difference between kingpin and Hegemon. France being able to defeat other Great Powers 1v1 was great. France being able to defeat all other Great powers simultaneously is a disaster.
Look at it this way: in the 19th Century, Britain was a kingpin- it could influence the entire globe, but it would crumble against a coalition, so Britain had to be careful with it's diplomacy. in the 21st century, the US is a hegemon, so it's diplomacy is black and white, either with us or against us. If Britain acted like the US did now, Britain would have lost.
Being able to use France as a big stick to worry Prussia and Austria was to Britain's benefit. France being able to dictate what it wants to Prussia and Austria would be disastrous.
Bourbon France was never even close to establishing a continental hegemony, yet Britain opposed them throughout most of the 17th and 18th centuries simply because France was the greatest power on the continent. They didn't want any kingpin, topdog, hegemon, or whatever, they wanted a balance of power with the continental great powers being as close to equals as possible.
>Bourbon France was never even close to establishing a continental hegemon
yes it was, e.g. when the Ottomans (who France was allied with) threatened Austria or during the War of the Spanish Succession
>when the Ottomans (who France was allied with) threatened Austria
The Franco-Ottoman alliance was essentially only an alliance on paper as there was basically never any coordination between them, and two allies having hegemony together is not at all the same thing as having hegemony alone.
>during the War of the Spanish Succession
That was probably the closest, but it was still not close. A decisive victory in the war that would have let Philip V keep all Spanish possessions aswell as succession rights to the French throne was completely unrealistic.
>Bourbon France was never even close to establishing a continental hegemony
This was due to the constant interference of the British and other powers. If France had been able to establish a personal union over Spain, conquer the Netherlands and humble Austria it would have been the de-facto hegemon.
Saying Britain's main goal was to keep France on equal footing is like saying France's main objective in the wars of the 18th century was to annex Britain; a fantasy.
France was dominant, and the wars were fought to stop them tilting the balance irrevocably in their favour. While Britain wanted a balance of power on the continent, that was framed under the threat of French hegemony.
18th century Bourbon France =/= the situation in the congress of Vienna. Post Revolution, France was economically and militarily spent, with continental opposition that was far more organised and unified. The threat of France steamrolling Europe was gone, which means that having France stronger to contain the rest of Europe was in British interests. Britain tried to swap Germany into this position in the late 1800s once it was clear France wasn't up to the job anymore, but Germany didn't want to be second fiddle to anyone.
>Saying Britain's main goal was to keep France on equal footing
I said as equal as possible, not literally equal.
>means that having France stronger to contain the rest of Europe was in British interests
It wasn't about containing the rest of Europe, it was about containing whichever country was the greatest threat to the balance of power. France wasn't always the natural ally for this, on the contrary it looked like the threat at times. More than once many in Europe, not least in Britain, were worried that France had gone back to it's aggressive ways, like when they intervened in Belgium or when they demanded the Rhineland.
>Britain tried to swap Germany into this position in the late 1800s once it was clear France wasn't up to the job anymore, but Germany didn't want to be second fiddle to anyone.
Nobody ever wants to be second fiddle to anyone, it's rather a matter of whether you can be anything more than a second fiddle. I wouldn't say that this was the case for France, atleast not regarding continental affairs. What brought about the Franco-British alliance was the increasing threat of Germany. An Anglo-German alliance might have been possible under Bismarck, since under him both countries wanted to maintain the balance of power, but his successors practiced a much more confrontational diplomacy that could only drive Britain away into the arms of Germanys enemies.
they could have during the war of spanish succession, a war that happened exactly to prevent that
Accept the error of our ways and give everything to France to do with as they please.
Also bring Napoleon back from Saint Helena and grovel at his feet
this would've made so much more sense
>give Saxony to Prussia instead of the Rhineland
>give Bavaria to Austria instead of North Italy
>give the Rhineland-Westphalia to the Wittelsbach as compensation
>create an Italian Confederation that's not run by Austria
both Saxony and Bavaria fought on Napoleon's side anyway, so they deserved some form of punishment anyway
plus Bavaria got the Palatinate, then Rhineland-Westphalia and Palatinate would be continuous too
Partition Russia, Turkey, Austria, and France.
>draw random squiggles everywhere
>give ireland independence
>give ireland a tonne of resources and money
>inexplicably make paris, vienna, london and berlin independent city states
>shoot self immediately after deal is made fact
Corsica to the Savoyards to end any Napoleonic nonsense
Otherwise it was probably the best as is irl
>we need to punish France!
Full retard, the reason why the peace was so successful is the gentle treatment of France.
I wouldn't change a damn thing, the diplomats were a cut above the later retards negotiating the Treaty of Versailles.
This. The 1815 lads did well.
There needed to be a more decisive push to run the Ottomans off North Africa and to build viable Egyptian, Tunisian, and Moroccan states however. Also a Greek state which gets Cyrene.
I don't know what to do about western Libya or the Balkans, but in fairness neither does anyone else today.