Unification Of Germany Essay

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Unification of Germany This article deals with the unification of 1871. For the unification of West and East Germany in 1990, see German reunification. The German Empire of 1871-1918. By excluding the German part of the multinational Austrian Empire, this geographic construction represented a "little Germany" solution. The formal unification of Germany into a politically and administratively integrated nation state occurred on 18 January 1871 at the Versailles Palace's Hall of Mirrors. Princes of the many German states gathered there to proclaim Wilhelm of Prussia as Emperor Wilhelm I of the German Empire. Unification was a complicated process. Historians debate whether or not Otto von Bismarck, the Minister-President of Prussia, had a master-plan to expand the North German Confederation of 1866 to include the remaining independent German states into the German Empire — or whether he simply sought to expand the power of the Kingdom of Prussia. This article also addresses the factors beyond the strength of Bismarck's Realpolitik that led to unification. The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation had been informally dissolved in 1806 with the abdication of the Emperor, Francis.[1] Despite the legal, administrative, and political disruption caused by the dissolution of the Empire, the people of the German-speaking areas of the old Empire had a common linguistic, cultural and legal tradition that was further enhanced by their shared experience in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. The spheres of influence model created after the Napoleonic Wars in 1815 supposedly established Austrian dominance in Central Europe. Prussia's rising competence, embodied in the Realpolitik of "Iron Chancellor" Bismarck, challenged the Austrian authority for real leadership within the German states. This German dualism presented two solutions to the problem of

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