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Old January 9th, 2018, 01:24 PM   #1
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First German Unification




The first and at this point only episode of my series Short History in which I try to explain certain events in history in a short manner but without distorting any facts. The video talks about both major German powers, their conflict with one another and what events had to take place before Germany could finally be unified. Besides that it also quickly covers some events that took place prior to that.

The audio is in Russian but it has English subtitles.
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Old January 9th, 2018, 02:15 PM   #2
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Am I correct in sayng you're calling the first unification that of 1871 and the second would be 1990?
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Old January 9th, 2018, 04:05 PM   #3

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The First Reich was Charlemagne's creation.
The Second was Bismarck's
The Third was Hitler's.
The English cognate for "Reich" is "Commonwealth".
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Old January 9th, 2018, 04:06 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by stevev View Post
Am I correct in sayng you're calling the first unification that of 1871 and the second would be 1990?
The "second German reunification" resulted in a country 137k square miles large. The German Empire was 208k square miles and it was considered "small Germany" and a fake unification that is only recognized as such because history has chosen for whatever reason to acknowledge this as unification. The German Empire was not only missing the modern German states of Luxembourg, Austria and Liechtenstein but key components of the "Reich", in Switzerland, Bohemia the Netherlands and Belgium. This is over another 100k square miles of German territory that today's Germany does not contain and there's also your Alsace Lorraine's 5k square miles.

My point is that it's laughable to call the West and East Germany's reunification, a second German reunfication because the German Empire was never reunited, with the exception of a brief 3-4 years under Hitler(and even then Switzerland still was independent). Calling the Second Reich German unification is already close enough to being patently false(and was regarded as such at the time) as it is today's Germany is scarcely more than a third of the HRE(and I'm not saying the Carolingian Empire, I'm saying the HRE, Carolingian Empire was at least 5 times as large). This isn't me nitpicking there's a huge difference between what today's Germany was and the "First Reich".

Last edited by Emperor of Wurttemburg 43; January 9th, 2018 at 04:10 PM.
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Old January 9th, 2018, 04:41 PM   #5
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Emperor -I am sure that you are wrong re Switzerand, The Swiss fought for their independence from Hapsburg Austira-see William Tell .
And Germany pre -Bismarrk was dominated by the Austro Hungarian Empire. Netherlands was the Spanish Netherlands colony before the Dutch grabbed their independence from Hapsburg Spain in 1580.-no German connection at all.
Bohemia was an independent kingdom for centuries too.
an independentd Kingdom before succumbing to Austrian Hapsburg rule
Belgium was known as the Austrian Netherlands -no German connection here either so your take on Europe's historical Geography and German history is deficient.
The Hapsburgs wee Spanish /Austrian -not German except by marriage..

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Old January 10th, 2018, 01:10 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by stevev View Post
Am I correct in sayng you're calling the first unification that of 1871 and the second would be 1990?
Yes, that is correct, however it is important to note that the understanding of what is Germany had changed quite a bit in between the two unifications, as in Prussia, Pomerania and Silesia were no longer a part of it.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 01:28 AM   #7
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I believe that you are mixing up the terms ,,German,, and ,,Germanic,,. Its true that the Netherlands, Switzerland and northern Belgium were inhabited mainly by Germanic peoples, however they at different points in history made the decision to separate their identity as a people from the general German one. Besides that Bohemia was never majority Germanic, it was only the western part known later as the Sudetenland which was inhabited heavily by Germans while the general population was Сzech. As for the HRE, well it was not in any way based on nationality, the rulers conquered and inherited many different lands and territories, painting the borders not in any cohesive way but rather in what way was available to them, so its very questionable to claim that a unified German state would require to control all of the HREs territories to be legitimate and calling the creation of the German Empire German unification is in no way wrong, you just have to keep in mind that, as mentioned in the video, the lesser solution was chosen.

Last edited by ShortHistory; January 10th, 2018 at 01:33 AM.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 01:47 AM   #8

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucius View Post
The First Reich was Charlemagne's creation.
The Second was Bismarck's
The Third was Hitler's.
The English cognate for "Reich" is "Commonwealth".
Reich Derives from Celtic Rige and Latin Regnum or directly from Rīkiją Protogermanic from Indoeuropean root Regnom . It means kingdom and in German is used also as extension for Empire.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 03:14 AM   #9
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The First Reich was Charlemagne's creation.
No actually it was the "Heiliges römisches Reich deutscher nation", which was founded by emperor Otto I, also founder of the Ottonian dynasty (919-1024).

After defeating the Hungarians Otto, as king of the east Frankish kingdom was called to Rome and there in 962 AD crowned emperor by the Pope, in return for military protection of the Papacy — which inaugurated the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation. If one likes it can be considered a successor to the empire of Charlemagne, which was the successor of the West Roman Empire.

Of course it didn't really get referred to as the "first Reich" until the second Reich came about in the 19th c. And the second Reich didn't recognize Charlemagne as founder of anything really German (he was simply too French by then), so Otto it was.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 04:32 AM   #10

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucius View Post
The First Reich was Charlemagne's creation.
The Second was Bismarck's
The Third was Hitler's.
The English cognate for "Reich" is "Commonwealth".
Well, the first wasn't really German though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pendennis View Post
Emperor -I am sure that you are wrong re Switzerand, The Swiss fought for their independence from Hapsburg Austira-see William Tell .
And Germany pre -Bismarrk was dominated by the Austro Hungarian Empire. Netherlands was the Spanish Netherlands colony before the Dutch grabbed their independence from Hapsburg Spain in 1580.-no German connection at all.
Bohemia was an independent kingdom for centuries too.
an independentd Kingdom before succumbing to Austrian Hapsburg rule
Belgium was known as the Austrian Netherlands -no German connection here either so your take on Europe's historical Geography and German history is deficient.
The Hapsburgs wee Spanish /Austrian -not German except by marriage..

.
An independent Austrian identity only emerged post-45. Before that they were Germans.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larrey View Post
No actually it was the "Heiliges römisches Reich deutscher nation", which was founded by emperor Otto I, also founder of the Ottonian dynasty (919-1024).

After defeating the Hungarians Otto, as king of the east Frankish kingdom was called to Rome and there in 962 AD crowned emperor by the Pope, in return for military protection of the Papacy — which inaugurated the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation. If one likes it can be considered a successor to the empire of Charlemagne, which was the successor of the West Roman Empire.

Of course it didn't really get referred to as the "first Reich" until the second Reich came about in the 19th c. And the second Reich didn't recognize Charlemagne as founder of anything really German (he was simply too French by then), so Otto it was.
Even then it's kinda a historical rebranding. The whole "of the German nation" came only about very late in the HRE's existence and I think officially there is only one document calling it like that (? might be right, that's what I remember). The idea of the HRE being German is a weird one given that it was inhabited by Danes, Dutch, Flames, Belgian Germans and French, Swiss Germans, French and Italians, Italians, Czechs, Slavonians, Poles, Slovacs, Lithuanians, Latvians and so on aside Germans. The German national (not cultural and linguistic) identity is a 19th century construct and should not be applied to the HRE - also done by the "new" Germans post 1871 to legitimize themselves and create a national heritage.
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