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Two Germanies 1864-1925

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By Kuusinen   |   
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© 2015 - 2020 Kuusinen
This little alternative history piece depicts a fictional territorial evolution of Central Europe. The timeline is roughly as follows:

Having defeated Denmark and Austria in 1864-1866, Prussia was a rising star in Germany, waiting to lead the unification of Kleindeutschland. However, France was not willing to allow that to happen and staged an invasion in 1870. Austria, having been forced to the Ausgleich with Hungary in 1866, decided to intervene in the Franco-Prussian War on the side of France despite Hungarian opposition. As it happens, the French (with help from Austria and Bavaria) managed to win the war and temporarily push Prussian ambitions in Germany back. In 1872, Austria formed the South German Confederation with French backing, effectively bringing Baden, Wurthemberg and Bavaria into the enormous Austro-Hungarian Empire. Even though the French and Austrian emperors had thought that the balance of power had been restored by the move, it lead to the partition of the empire in 1876 when Hungary and Croatia ceded from Vienna under Russian and Prussian support. 

The following decades witnessed rising tensions in Europe. Prussian military and economic might grew steadily as did Russian expansionism (Russian-Ottoman War of 1877-78). Lines of power struggle in Europe begun to clear between the leading world powers, Britain and France, and their rivals, Prussia and Russia. In 1884, Russia invaded the South German Confederation (usually just called Austria), during a Polish revolt in Austrian Galicia. The following year, Prussia intervened on the side of the Russians and crushed the South German armies, displaying its might to the other Germans, and indeed, the other great powers. Austria was forced to cede Galicia to Russia and Austrian Silesia to Prussia. In a show of internal strength, Prussia dismissed the North German Confederation in 1885 and established the Prussian Empire, which was per definition, a precursor to a German Empire.

The Galician War had great significance for world affairs, not only for it tightened the bonds between Prussia and Russia, but also because it decisively raised the growing rivalry between Prussia and France. During the 1890s and 1900s, the new aggressive policy of Prussian Empreror Wilhelm II only flared up the situation in addition to the crumbling ethnic tensions within the ailing Ottoman Empire in the Balkans. Alliances were formed according to national itnerests, where Prussia was against France and Austria; Russia against the Ottomans and Hungary; the Balkan nations against Hungary and the Ottomans; Italy against Austria and the Ottomans; France against Prussia and Britain against Russia. Britain would not allow for Russian or Italian expansion in the Black Sea and Mediterranean. These mutual interest laid the groundwork for the following system of alliances:
France/Britain/Hungary/Austria/Ottoman Empire versus Prussia/Russia/Italy.

The Great European War finally opened in 1912. The Italians engaged the Ottomans in war over Lybia. Meanwhile, the Balkan League, Greece, Serbia, Bulgiara and Montenegro went to war with the Ottoman Empire to gain back national terriories. The British increased their presence in the Eastern Mediterranean as Russian warships approached the Bosphorus Straits. The straw which broke the camel's back was a terrorist attack in Hugnarian Vojvodina by a Serbian nationalist group, which prompted Hungary to attack Serbian positions across the border in December 1912. Russia then mobilised and declared war against Hungary and moved against the Ottoman navy, which promted the British to declare war upon Russia. The dominoes fell one after the other, Prussia declared war on Austria and Hungary in January 1913, France on Prussia and Russia and so on and so forth.

The Great European War was fought in two phases. The first phase, between 1912 and 1915 saw combat between Prussians, Italians, Austrians and French in South Germany and Austria. As time went on, the Prussians proved stronger, resulting in the French retreating to France in late 1914. The Hungarian front was fought by Hungarians, Serbians and Russians, later on suppored by the Prussians. Here too, the Prussian-Russian coalition emerged on top. The Balkan League drove the Ottomans out of Europe by 1914. Finally, in the Mediterranean, the British established full control rather early on in the war, defeating both the Russian and the Italian navies and keeping the Russians far away from the straits (as well as keeping the Ottomans in the war despite defeats on land).

The French Empire was plagued by demonstrations and civil unrest due to the war and general lack of liberties. Defeat on the battlefield in South Germany in late 1914 lead to a coup taking place in the where a short-lived Socialist Republic of France was established. The new socialist government which was opposed to continuing the war agreed to be a signatory of the Treaty of Prague, a temporary armistice agreement in early 1915. The treaty, which was not signed by the Ottomans redrew the borders of Central-Eastern Europe. Prussia and the South German Confederation were united in the long-awaited German Empire and Slovakia was annexed by Russia. Furthermore, all victories made by the Balkan League were recognised by the signatories (which were basically all belligerents but Britain and the Ottoman Empire).

This understanding between Socialist France and Germany created an interim peace which lasted between 1915 and 1918. During this time, mistrust and continued armament characterised Franco-German relations, as well as the German-Russian alliance practically dried up. Russian internal affairs simply went down the drain during the period. In 1916, a polish uprising in Russian Poland was suppressed by German forces, who decided to permanently occupy the area due to Russian inabilty to govern. Due to the internal unrest in Russia, the Tzar was forced to abdicate later that year, followed shortly by an exchange of violence between the various political factions. The British staged landings in Crimea in 1917, as a means to force the Russians to the peace table. This proved succesful as the British managed to broker a deal with Russian white forces. When the Bolsheviks had been defeated in 1918 by Whites and British forces, a semi-democratic government in Petersburg agreed to an armistice with Britain on terms that it would join the war against Germany (as well as abide to British post-war demands regarding the Black sea and the Balkans which we shall return to later). 

Suddenly, things turned to the favour of the British, as the Socialist government in France collapsed and a democratically elected government took its place. Acting as though nothing had happened, the British made deals with the new government of France ensuring French re-entry into the war against Germany. The Second Phase of the Great European War commenced in early 1919, when Germany invaded France through Belgium. The Russians were plagued by the after effects of the civil war and never re-occupied Poland. They, however, made some symbolic effort against the Germans, in reality doing little more than keeping a second front open. France and Belgium turned to killing fields in the years of 1919-1921, where securely entrenched forces slaughtered each other wave after wave. By 1921, as all belligerents were exhausted by the war, the United States joined the war on the side of the Allies, pouring men and materials to the trenches. The Allies slowly began to push the Germans back in 1922, and by 1923, the Germans were on the brink of collapse after four years of relentless fighting. Revolts in Austria and Poland, demonstrations in Berlin and a series of Russian victories in East Prussia forced the Germans to the peace table in late 1923.

The London Peace Conference of 1925 dictated by the United States, France and Britain designed a new order in Europe in which Germany was to be permanently divided. Austria was re-established and the French insisted on creating a buffer state, the Rhineland Republic. Furthermore, a number of Slavic nations were given independence in Central-Eastern Europe.

Was this bitter peace to hold? 
Image size
3913x2633px 2.33 MB
Comments39
anonymous's avatar
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AnViTaRo's avatar

Excellent work! But one question: Why Seelbach? Seelbach is a small romantic village (sic! not town) in the Black Forest. Does it have any historical aspect in your map? ;)

19111995's avatar
What do Czechs think about German Bohemia and Moravia being part of Austria? Do they want it, or do they acknowledge the German population there?

Also, even though Austria is a French ally, does it have ambitions for German Alsace? Or do they plan on avoiding that issue?


I'm also kinda surprised that Romania did not have any territorial changes, especially the potential for them to gain Austrian Bukovina during the Galician War and Russian Bessarabia after the Great European War. Were they neutral in both conflicts? Or just unlucky?

Besides that, I love this map, and I'm amazed that you've created a scenario more insane than the Treaty of Versailles, Trianon, and Saint-Germain-en-Laye.
19111995's avatar
Correct me if I'm blind, but where is the Polish capital in the last map? Warsaw is not marked, so is it some other city?
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
You are not blind, its an error on the map.
EricVonSchweetz's avatar
EricVonSchweetzHobbyist Digital Artist
Could the three German states, Prussia, Rhineland and Austria, reunited in one single German state further later?
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Probably
RogueLeader1000's avatar
An interesting project, though I got to admit, at some point the timeline seems to devolve into just picking on Germany at some point. =P (Razz) 
Arminius1871's avatar
Arminius1871Hobbyist Digital Artist
What a cool project, surely much work and it looks so neat!
You can always post german-related maps in our group, too!
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you and I will!
zalezsky's avatar
zalezskyHobbyist Digital Artist
You've been tweeted ;) MapsAndFlags
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Nice!
Al3ssio97's avatar
Noo, Triest is Italian 
zalezsky's avatar
zalezskyHobbyist Digital Artist
beautiful!
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
 Thanks!
TheAstronomicon's avatar
TheAstronomiconHobbyist Writer
Very nice, not implausible either.
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Good to hear! :)
Ienkoron's avatar
Not too shabby :)
fennomanic's avatar
fennomanicHobbyist Digital Artist
Good work :D
Spiritswriter123's avatar
Spiritswriter123Hobbyist General Artist
Germanies... That seems so odd...
Germanys...
Germanias...
Germanlands...

I'm not sure any would sound good...
LeDaverix's avatar
LeDaverixHobbyist Digital Artist
xD
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Isn't it a phrase used sometimes to describe OTL East and West Germany?
Spiritswriter123's avatar
Spiritswriter123Hobbyist General Artist
I don't think I've ever heard "Germanies" used in that context (or any context). I've always heard it as "East and West Germany did blah blah blah..." instead of "The two Germanies did blah blah blah..."
Kuusinen's avatar
KuusinenHobbyist Digital Artist
Well there's a first time for everything.

en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Germani…;
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germanie… 
anonymous's avatar
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