Disaster at Leuthen TL - Frederick the Great dies in battle

Disaster at Leuthen Timeline

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“...the Prussian king’s horse bolted suddenly, whether from a noise or some other occurrence may never be known, and Frederick was tossed from his saddle. The king’s retinue could only look on in stunned horror as the monarch’s head smashed into a rock and his lifeless body sprawled out on the road. The great Frederick II was dead.” – An excerpt from ‘The Four Year’s War’ by Arthur Stonebridge.

“...the sudden and accidental death of Frederick II was the pivotal moment of the war. The Prussian army, demoralised, confused and without their great leader, was subsequently routed by the larger Austrian army at the Battle of Leuthen on December 5th 1757. The Prussian cause, already desperate, was now hopeless.” – An excerpt from Ferdinand Strauss’s ‘A History of Prussia’.


The Four Years War
Part I

The Four Year’s War, in Europe, began on 29th August 1756 when Prussian king Frederick II, having recently signed an alliance with Great Britain, invaded the German nation of Saxony in a move designed to pre-empt an Austro-French invasion of Silesia. The Prussian army won a series of battles against the Austro-Saxon forces, eventually cumulating in the surrender of Saxony. The invasion of Saxony however was viewed negatively in the rest of Europe and soon Austria was joined by France and Russia in the war against Prussia. Great Britain joined their Prussian allies, and began sending aid to the Prussians as well as deploying an army under the Duke of Cumberland to Hannover.

Elsewhere in the world the colonial superpowers, Britain and France, battled against each other. In North America the conflict had begun two years ago, and had been going poorly for the British. The French continued to enjoy success, repelling various British assaults into Canada and into Louisiana. The French and their Indian allies maintained the upper hand against the British and the colonials and were even able to seize the British base at Fort Oswego. In India the conflict was known as the Third Carnatic War.

Meanwhile in Europe, Frederick II invaded Austrian Bohemia in attempt to knock Austria out of the war, as the Russians invaded East Prussia. The Prussian advance into Bohemia however was dealt a blow with defeat at the Battle of Kolin on June 18th 1757 and Fredrick was forced to withdraw back into Prussia. Meanwhile the French had moved west and attacked Hannover defeating the Duke of Cumberland’s forces at the Battle of Hastenbeck, which resulted in the Convention of Klosterzeven and the surrender of Hannover and Cumberland’s forces. The Prussian victory at the Battle of Rossbach however gave the Prussians hope that they could survive. Tragedy however followed shortly after with the surprise death of Frederick II following a fall from his horse and the subsequently decisive Austrian victory at the Battle of Leuthen. Frederick’s heir apparent was his nephew the thirteen year old Frederick William. The sudden death of the king threw the Prussian government into a state of chaos.

The Prussian army that had been crushed at Leuthen withdrew north in disarray where it was again defeated by the Austrians at the Battle of Crossen in February 1758. This defeat resulted in the complete destruction of the Prussian Army. This, in addition to the Russian advances in the East and the French successes in the west caused the Prussian government, still in disarray, to ask for an armistice, which was accepted in early May 1758.

Prussian Troops advance against Austrian forces Battle of Leuthen 1758:

The Four Years War

Part II

The collapse of their continental ally left the British in a serious state. The new British government led by William Pitt had set the goal of conquering Canada this year by attacking the French at Louisbourg and Quebec. However, the Prussian collapse had thrown doubt onto all these plans. The French and their allies were now able to shift their focus entirely against Britain. Seeing the Prussian collapse and sensing Britain’s upcoming defeat, Spain, under French pressure, declared war on Great Britain in early June 1758. The Pitt government decided that hey had to act fast to reach a position from which an agreeable peace could be reached. The British plan was therefore to quickly assemble a force in Britain which would be sent to seize Louisbourg while meanwhile creating a force of colonial troops and drive the French out of the Ohio River Valley area. Pitt sent out a passionate call to the colonials asking them for more men to drive out the French, and they responded quite strongly and the volunteers began assembling.

The French and their allies had different plans however. The Spanish began assembling troops in Florida in order to strike at the southern British colonies. Meanwhile the French and Spanish began expanding and improving their fleets. Following the Treaty of Dresden in August 1758, formally acknowledging the Prussian surrender, the French began moving their forces west and massing them near Calais, threatening the invasion of Britain. Seeing the entire might of the French army across the Channel the Royal Navy was called back to defend the home islands. With the Royal Navy concentrated at home the French and Spanish managed to slip more and more men and equipment through the British blockade and land them in the New World. In January of 1759 the French dispatched a large expedition to Canada, containing around 15,000 men. The Pitt government became aware of this and called for the expedition to be intercepted. However, the King and other members of parliament refused, saying this could be a ruse and that the main strength should be kept at home.

With nearly all of mainland Europe closed to it, Britain’s trading ability was severely curtailed and thus the government began to run out of money. The French, now solely focused on Britain and receiving money from a defeated Prussia, were able to out finance their opponents. In order to improve the financial strain on the country Pitt dispatched ships south to raid and capture French West African bases and then proceed on to Africa. With the French expedition now clearly heading to the New World, Pitt was able to gather enough support to dispatch ships from the Home Fleet for his African mission.

In March of 1759 the colonial forces with a British attachment under General Forbes moved west into the Ohio Valley as part of the envisioned British double offensive. The British force that had been organised to attack Louisbourg was delayed however by the invasion scare, and finally arrived in early April. However the imminent arrival of the French expedition, dissuaded the British from attacking Louisbourg, fearing that they would be trapped between the fort and the arriving French. Instead the British moved south to their base at Halifax. The French fleet arrived later that month, the British fleet moved to intercept them. A titanic naval battle ensued off Cape Breton. The French tried to force their way through the British to land their men. At the end of the day the French casualties were 6 ships of the line destroyed, 1 captured, around a dozen smaller vessels lost and around 5,000 dead. The British had lost only 4 ships of the line and less than 10 other ships. However, the French were still able to land around 9,000 men of the expedition before being forced to break off.

In June the French Expedition moved south to strike at Halifax. On July 2nd the British moved out to meet them and the Battle of Halifax was fought. The French army, veterans of the European war, were joined by a further 1,000 men, mostly French Canadians and a few French-allied Indians. The result was a decisive French victory, the British forces was destroyed and Halifax fell. Meanwhile the British Ohio Campaign and succeeded in taking Fort Duquesne and Fort Niagara. However, the Spanish drive into the Carolinas and the French victory at Halifax more than neutralised these gains. In early August, with the Royal Navy concentrated heavily at home, a surprise Franco-Spanish force managed to capture Barbados. In India meanwhile the fighting had gone back and forth, yet neither side had managed to make a significant breakthrough, the arrival of British ships dispatched by Pitt allowed them the British to compete with the French in the subcontinent. The British victory at Plassey however cemented their control over Bengal.

In December the last major battle of the war would be fought. With the nation war weary and with the defeats at Halifax and Cape Breton the Pitt government decided that a resounding victory was needed to raise the country’s morale. The British decide to attack the combined Franco-Spanish fleet massing near Brest. The Royal Navy is however spread across the globe and the force sent to attack the allied fleet is not as powerful as it could have been, especially following the losses at Cape Breton and the ships sent to India and Africa. On December 5th the Royal Navy attacks the allied fleet near Quiberon Bay. The result is a pyrrhic victory for the British. The allies loose nine ships of the line, the British eight and the allied fleet is put to flight. However, the inconclusive victory is not enough to rally the nation. The King, who has the interests of Hannover rather than Britain at heart, intervenes. Pitt is dismissed and the Duke of Newcastle is placed in charge. In early February, following a series of skirmishes and with the French army in Canada marching south, the British ask for an armistice according to status quo ante bellum. The French counter, offering to cede Chandernagore and some West African bases in return for Barbados and Belize (to Spain) and peace. India was to be divided with Britain in Bengal and France in the southeast. After much debate the war weary British government accepts, and the Treaty of Rotterdam is signed on March 27th 1760.

Treaty of Dresden (1760):

The Treaty of Rotterdam

The Treaty of Rotterdam (1760) officially ended the Four Years War. This treaty dealt with territorial exchanges outside of Europe. The French gains were originally supposed to be marginal, but were enhanced as a reult of compromises discussed in the earlier Treaty of Dresden.

In India there was no major exchanges. Instead, the continent was in effect divided into areas of influence. Britain's ownership of Bengal was cemented and recognised, as well as of Bombay. French control on the southeast of the subcontinent was accepted by Britain.

In North America French claims in the Ohio Valley were accepted, though the British Thirteen Colonies were able to solidfy their immediate claims. Nova Scotia was ceded to France along with British Guyana in exchange for France not getting the Austrian Netherlands. British Belize was ceded to Spain and Barbados to France.

The Treaty of Rotterdam was widely unpopular in Britain. The Duke of Newcastle was forced to resign following a backlash explosion in Parliament, and Pitt was back in charge. The new king, George III, was resented for signing the treaty in order to save Hannover. His influence was greatly diminished and Pitt's Parliament began to distance itself from Hannoverian politics, arguing for 'Britain first'.

The major lasting impact of the treaty would be in North America however. The British colonial subjects and the redcoat garrisons eyed the French surrounding them with fear and suspicion. Pro-British Indian tribes, now in French territory, continued to wage a guerrilla campaign against the French supplied and aided by Britain and the colonies.

Treaty of Rotterdam 1760:

The Third War of Polish Succession


Part I

The conflict in eastern Europe between 1768 and 1772 is known and was known by many names, the Polish Civil War, the Confederate Uprising, the Crimean War, but the title of the Third War of Polish Succession, though not strictly accurate, is the one that is most widely used and is representative of the war as a whole rather than painting it as a local or regional conflict. The origins of the Third War of Polish Succession (the first two being 1587-1588 and 1733-1738) stem from the ‘election’ of Stanislaw II August Poniatowski as king of Poland in 1764, a nomination that was encouraged by Russian troops. This rigged election upset many leading Polish aristocrats and religious leaders who wished to rid Poland of Russian influence. Following the Four Year’s War (1756-1760) the Prussians began taking an active interest in developments in Poland. The alliance with Britain, though helpful, was strained and the Prussians needed to look for a continental ally, thus they began secret negotiations with the anti-Russian forces in Poland, also pro-Prussian lobbying is stepped up in Istanbul.

King Stanislaw:

In 1768 a meeting of these Polish-Lithuanian nobles meet at the fortress of Bar. They declared their intentions to be the removal of Russian influence from the Commonwealth and the deposing of King Stanislaw August Poniatowski, who was seen as a Russian puppet. The Confederate forces soon began taking control of the west of the country, while a simultaneous revolt breaks out in Polish controlled Ukraine. They begin raising an army in the west and use weapons imported from Prussia. The Bar Confederation immediately send a message to Berlin, offering the return of East Prussia in exchange for Prussian aid. The young Prussian King, Frederick William II, is encouraged by his hawk-like ministers, who were angry with the Treaty of Dresden, to recognise the Confederate cause, as indeed many of its members have been Prussian allies since the end of the Four Year’s War. Prussian forces begin mobilisation and veteran Prussian officers are sent to advise the Confederate forces. This is met by a declaration of war on Prussia by the Russians and King Stanislaw August. The current Elector of Saxony, Frederick Christian [1], was the son of the previous king of Poland, and begins negotiations with Prussia and the Bar Confederation, offering himself as an alternative to King Stanislaw.

Frederick Christian:

In September a force of Russian Cossacks sent to aid King Stanislaw pursue a Confederate force into Ottoman territory [2]. The Ottoman Sultan Mustafa III, a reform minded king who was determined to reverse the Ottoman decline, with backing and encouragement from his Prussian allies, declared war on Russia and Stanislaw in response. A Prussian army under the command of General Wichard von Mollendorf invades western Poland late in the year and heads straight for East Prussia in an attempt to take Konigsberg from the pro-Stanislaw garrison. The Prussians are opposed to the plans of Frederick of Saxony and influence the Confederates to refuse the Saxon’s offer. Upon hearing of the rejection King Stanislaw sends an alternative offer to Saxony. He offers to wed his daughter Izabela to Frederick Christian’s son Frederick Augustus and will name Augustus as his heir to the Polish throne if Saxony intervenes against Prussia, thus recreating the dynastic union of Poland and Saxony.

Leaders of the Bar Confederation at prayer before a battle:

The Third War of Polish Succession

Part II

There was fierce debate within Saxony over whether or not to accept Stanislaw’s offer. Those against thought it might antagonize the Austrians and suck Saxony into a war they didn’t want. Those in favour saw it as a way to ensure Saxony’s independence and possibly expand their power in Germany. In the end the possibility of a Saxon-Polish union, and not to mention Frederick Christian’s own personal ambition, meant that the Saxon government decided to accept the offer. Saxony declared war on Prussia and the Ottoman Empire soon after and mobilized. The Prussians reacted quickly, and began assembling an army in Brandenburg under the command of Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbuttel. In Vienna there was much division on what course of action to take. Some argued for intervention against Prussia and the Confederates and honour the old alliance with Russia, others, including Empress Maria Theresa, believed that neutrality was the best option, a powerful Saxony and a Russian dominated Poland-Lithuania were seen as a much greater threat, especially now with Prussia weakened. In the end, the Hapsburgs opted for neutrality, at least for now.

Throughout early and mid 1769 the Confederates achieved many successes against the Loyalist and Russian forces. They managed to gain control over much of the west and south of the country. The Russians were being increasingly distracted by the Ottoman front and their support for Stanislaw was not as forthcoming as was needed. In June 1769 the Saxons invaded Prussia. A second Saxon army meanwhile was being assembled in the west, in Saxony’s new German territories. By early August the Prussian eastern army had re-occupied all of Eastern Prussia, the populace there overwhelmingly supporting the Prussian return. When news arrived of the Saxon invasion however, General Mollendorf decided drastic action was required. He sent several messages to Confederate forces in the south and then, leaving a small force to continue the siege of still holding Konigsberg, turned south recruiting some local militia as he went.

The Saxon invasion force made good ground as the Prussian hurried to counter the threat. The goal of the Saxon army was clear: Berlin. The Prussians manage to pull themselves together in time and headed out to stop the Saxon offensive before it got to the capital. On August 15th 1769 the two armies met at the Battle of Potsdam, southeast of Berlin. The Saxon force, approx. 65,000 tried to break through the Prussians, 55,000, and head for Berlin. After three failed Saxon infantry attacks up the centre, the Prussians were wavering. The Saxons were preparing for a fourth and final attack, when a Prussian cavalry attack smashed into their right flank. Led by the Hussar officer, Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher, the surprise offensive panicked the disorganised Saxons and their army soon turned to rout, cut down as they fled. The battle was a major success, Blücher was promoted to Major for his part in the battle, and it was a major turning point in the war.

Prussian soldiers at Potsdam:

In Poland however Mollendorf’s plan was bearing fruit. In early 1770 Mollendorf’s 60,000 Prussians marched quickly south from East Prussia and a Confederate attack from Krakow encircled the capital Warsaw and placed the King under siege. King Stanislaw was captured by the sudden allied offensive and the surviving Loyalist forces were either forced to surrender or flee to the east. The Russians meanwhile were finding themselves hard pressed on two fronts. A series of naval battles saw the Ottoman Fleet (which was advised by British naval experts, as London was determined to prevent Russian gains) defeat the Russian Baltic Fleet which had moved to the Mediterranean and force them to withdraw back to Russia. In early 1771 a Russian offensive south from Courland was halted by a Prussian/Confederate force and repulsed. Things turned for bad to worse for the Russians and Saxons. The new King Gustav III of Sweden, decided the moment was right to retake old Swedish lands, and invaded Russian Karelia in August. The Prussian army, victorious at Potsdam headed southwest into Saxony, now under the command of Major Blucher, Duke Charles having been injured in the previous battle. In November the Saxon western army, hurried eastward, met the Prussians west of Dresden, at Dobeln. The superior Prussians eventually broke the Saxon attack and won the battle. However, the Prussian casualties were too heavy to risk a drive on Dresden and Blücher ordered a withdrawal back to Prussia. In early 1772 King Stanislaw, still a captive, formally abdicated. The abdication took the wind out of the pro-war faction in Vienna, and the Austrians offered to mediate and end the war, the fear being now that continued war would benefit the Prussians, who were reforming for an invasion of Saxony. With Stanislaw’s abdication and the Austrian offer, the Russians, beset on three sides decided to throw in the towel, the Saxons following suit.

The following Treaty of Vienna (1773) was the result of much haggling and debate. The Prussians pushed for Saxon territory, but the Austrians were determined to maintain a balance between the two north German states, and in the end the Prussians were forced to accept financial indeminites instead of territory rather than risk war with the Hapsburgs. The Russians were forced to officialy recognsie the Crimea as Ottoman and renounce any claim to it, it being officialy absorbed into the Ottoman Empire. East Prussia was returned to Prussia as promised by the Confederates. Sweden also managed to regain some land in Karelia. The main question that dominated proceedings would be who would be the new king of Poland? The Austrians pushed for a Hapsburg candidate, the Prussians for a Hohenzollern, each blocking the other. Some Poles attempted to claim the throne themselves, but they were in turn blocked by others wanting the prize. The Austrians decided to compromise, they wanted an end to the war so they could focus on the troubles taking place in Italy[1]. In the end the only candidate agreeable was from a neutral party: in this case France. The second son of the current Dauphin of France[2] was chosen. A Bourbon king was acceptable to the Poles, he was a Catholic and wasn’t Russian, and was acceptable to the Prussians and Austrians because he wasn’t from the other. In addition he was the son of Maria Josepha of Saxony, wife of the Dauphin, who was the daughter of the old Polish king Augustus III who preceded Stanislaw. After officially renouncing any claims to the French or Saxon thrones, an Austrian insistence, the eighteen year old was crowned King Louis I[3] of Poland-Lithuania. The Prussians had regained their pride, the Poles regained their kingdom, the Saxons regained their fear, the Ottomans regained Crimea, the Swedes regained Karelia but most importanly of all the Russians regained their distrust of the Austrians, their allies who abandoned them.

Louis I of Poland-Lithuania:

The Sardinian War

Victory in the Four Year’s War had a great impact on France. The French King, Louis XV and his ministers now became attached to the idea of a grand French colonial empire. France’s gains in America and Africa were to be the beginning of a globe spanning French state. To achieve this the French began encouraging increased emigration to their colonies, especially to Louisiana. The large and under populated French territory of Louisiana saw a massive increase in the amount of settlers. The French saw the populous and successful British colonies as a threat, despite their victory, and realised that the key to maintaining their power in America was population. French peasants began arriving in New France in large numbers as the government in Paris began using various incentives (money, promises of land, force) to encourage settlement there. Those that left willingly tended to flock to Canada, settling in and around Quebec and Montreal. Louisiana however tended to be settled by a combination of forced émigrés, entrepreneurial merchants as well as dissatisfied members of the bourgeoisie who attempted to escape the absolutism of France.

The rise in French settlements in the New World upsets the local native tribes that are being forced of their lands. In 1771 and 1772 a series of native attacks occur in French Louisiana and Canada. In the northeast Iroquois tribes, with weapons smuggled in from the British colonies, attack French settlements and forts. In the far west of Louisiana the Plains tribes, also under pressure from the new French expansion, step up their hostility. In response French forces are dispatched from Europe to quell the unrest. The French pre-occupation in the colonies and with Austria distracted by the war in Poland, the new Sardinian king, Victor Amadeus III decided, in late 1772, the time was right to expand the Sardinian kingdom and he invaded neighbouring Genoa. The Sardinian Army achieved great successes against the Genoese and by the end of the year the city itself had fallen, as had Corsica. The king then made the risky decision to invade the Duchy of Parma as well, before the great powers could intervene. The Duke of Parma, a Bourbon, fled to France and asked for help. The Parmans put up a spirited resistance but they too were overcome.

Victor Amadeus III:

In February of 1773 Venice, Tuscany, the Papal States and others, formed a coalition in order to halt Sardinian aggression. Leopold II of Tuscany, son of Maria Theresa, wrote his mother asking for aid. His brother, Joseph, wrote back saying he thought Leopold could handle it and that the crisis in Poland required his attention. The southern states hastily assemble a unified force and head north to face the Sardinians. In the mean time Venice begins marshalling its own forces which head west to join the southern armies. King Victor decides to attack the southern forces before the Venetians can arrive. He marches south and manages to rout the coalition army, which was suffering from a lack of unity and cohesion, at the Battle of Modena. The Venetians, upon hearing of the defeat, loose faith and their advance slows as the generals are concerned about encountering the Sardinian army. This concern is well founded, when the Sardinians catch the Venetians by surprise at the Battle of Verona resulting in a Venetian defeat. Most of northern Italy was now under Sardinian control.

In late 1773 however, Empress Maria Theresia intervened at the behest of the Italian coalition. Austrian armies moved into Italy, the stated goal being the end of Sardinia’s war of aggression, but the empress’ true purpose was to increase Austrian power in Italy. The French however were not about to allow Austrian domination of Italy. King Louis XVI, the new King of France, had been recalling troops from America and India following the Duke of Parma's arrival, and in January 1774 he threatened Austria with war unless they withdrew. The Austrians, after much debate, backed down and in April 1774 the Treaty of Nice was signed. In it, the Republic of Genoa ceded Corsica to Sardinia as well as some mainland territory. The Bourbon duke of Parma was reinstated. A new North Italian Confederation was created to counter future Sardinian aggression. Austria ceded its Italian territories to the Confederation in exchange for all of Venice’s Illyrian Territories and the Bishopric of Trent.

Prince Charles of Sardinia:

After the treaty however France moved to increase its influence in Italy. King Victor Amadeus III’s eldest son, Charles, was married to the new French king’s daughter Marie Clotidle, in an attempt, as France stated, to contain future Sardinian expansionism. This goal was lost on Austria, and the other major states, and all they saw was yet another Bourbon dynasty. There were just too many Bourbon states now. An issue made even more prevelent when word reached Vienna of the marriage between Ferdinand, son of the duke of Parma, and the French princess Louise, daughter of King Louis XVI. The Austrian ambassador to Paris was actually temporarily recalled in protest at these marriages, that had not been part of the Treaty of Nice and had taken part without Austrian knowledge. The feeling among many states, especially Austria, was that this family was getting a little too powerful for their own good.

Treaty of Nice 1774:

India and the Franco-Mysore War

The Treaty of Rotterdam (1760), which ended the Four Years War, effectively divided India into two competing areas of influence. British control of Bengal was cemented with the cessation of Chandernagore to Britain from France. From Calcutta, the effective capital of British India, a new policy from London began to take effect. The government in Westminster, weary of the French threat, began increasing its control over the East India Company, including reinforcing its own garrison there in addition to Company troops. On the other side of the subcontinent Bombay became an increasingly important centre of British trade as well as serving as an excellent staging ground for British commercial and political ventures into the Maratha Empire.

In the southeast of India, however, it was the French that served as the primary European power. The French counted themselves lucky that they had achieved success in India, and knew it was only due to victories in Europe and America that they still had any influence in the subcontinent. As such King Louis XVI and his ministers decided to enhance their forces and position in the south. The French Governor General in India, Thomas Arthur [1], was granted new resources and backing from Paris and was instructed to extend the French powerbase, which he did in the early 1760s. In addition the French began aggressively attempting to gain influence and control in the area between their bases in the northern Circars and the southern area of Coromandel. The current Nizam of Hyderabad, Ali Khan Asaf Jah II, who nominally owned the disputed region, was courted by the French. Large amounts of French gold and weaponry went into bribing the Nizam, backed as always by the threat of force, who eventually allowed the French into the territory.

Nizam Ali Khan Asaf:

This move however was condemned by the nearby Kingdom of Mysore, whose ruler Hyder Ali, saw a possible French alliance with the Nizam as a threat to his state’s existence. So, with tacit British backing, attacked the French base at Arcot, taking the city and massacring the French inside. The French responded with a declaration of war in early 1767 and the Franco-Mysore War had begun. The French were supported by the Nizam who was to fight Mysore while the French mustered. Hyder Ali continued his campaign and headed southeast towards Pondicherry, though he did not feel confident enough to assault the city. The Nizam invaded Mysore in summer, although he made little headway he did cause Ali to lead the majority of his troops north to confront the Nizam.

Hyder Ali:

Early in 1768 the French force arrived and began advancing westward. A smaller force was landed in the west of Mysore and launched a successful surprise attack on the city of Calicut. In June the Nizam and Ali met at the Battle of Gutty, which saw the Nizam defeated. A series of small inconsequential skirmishes dominated the rest of the year. Ali was reluctant to advance against the French for fear of the Marathas; but when it became clear that British lobbying had convinced them to stay neutral, Ali marched east to confront the French. They met at the Battle of Gurramakonda in June of 1769. The result was a French victory and saw the Mysore army heavily damaged and they were scattered. The French were reluctant to pursue too far though as disease and attrition were already taking their toll and they withdrew to Madras. After another year of inconclusive fighting the Treaty of Goa was signed in August of 1770 ending the war. No territorial exchanges took place but Mysore was forced to recognise French influence over Hyderabad and its territories, which became an effective French vassal.

The treaty however was not a permanent peace effort, more a cease fire, and war would resume in India in a few years. In the north the British looked in alarm at the French victory and began stepping up their efforts in the Maratha Empire as well as sending advisors to Mysore. India was becoming a continent-wide tinderbox.​

Russia: Rebellion and Rebirth
Part I

Defeat in the Third War of Polish Succession (TWPS) was hard on the Russians. They had suffered territorial loses in Finland and lost influence in the Crimea, not to mention the replacement of a friendly regime in Poland with a staunchly anti-Russian state. One of the most lasting impacts however was the breakdown in relations with Austria. The failure of the Austrians to intervene in the TWPS infuriated Catherine and she even temporarily recalled her ambassador to Vienna. It was domestically though that the impact of the defeat would be felt first.

Catherine II:

The Russian defeat encouraged anti-establishment groups within the Russian Empire, peasant and noble, that the state was weak and the time was ready for change. The first sign of trouble was in the Volga. Defeat by the Ottomans had greatly encouraged the local Cossack tribes to rebel. They gained widespread support throughout the region amongst Cossacks and peasants dissatisfied with the absolutist regime in St. Petersburg. The Cossacks were led by Emelyan Pugachev, a dissatisfied deserter, and they quickly seized control of large areas in the south. New recruits, Cossacks, Tatars, peasants, deserters etc., flocked to the rebel’s cause and soon a full scale insurrection was at hand. By early 1774 large areas of land between the Urals and the Volga, including the capture of the city of Ufa, which became the rebel headquarters.

The rebellion had originally not been viewed too seriously by Catherine and the government in St. Petersburg, but with the fall of Ufa it was becoming increasingly obvious that the situation was far more troublesome than originally perceived. Consequently the Tsarina ordered Aleksandr Bibikov to take an army east and crush the rebellion. The result was a disaster. The Russian army at this point was demoralised and divided, many of the officer corps were unreliable and the conscripted masses were sympathetic to the rebellion. At the Battle of Sarapul, on November 13th 1774, the Imperial Army was crushed by the rebels and Bibikov was captured and executed.


The Battle of Sarapul was the critical moment of the war. The victory emboldened the rebel cause. Many of the survivors of Imperial Army from Sarapul defected to the rebels. This in addition to the scores of new recruits from the area brought the total rebel force to around 60,000 men, a formidable force. Pugachev now ordered his forces to move on the fortress at Kazan. The defeat at Sarapul however proved to be a death nail for Catherine, however. From the moment she had taken power from her husband, Peter III, there had been many in the aristocracy who opposed her. The victory in the Four Year’s War temporarily muted these voices; however the defeat in the Third War of Polish Succession granted new life to this growing mutiny, the defeat at Sarapul was the spark. A group of nobles, led by the disaffected Nikita Ivanovich Panin, conspired to overthrow the Tsarina. A direct coup was considered too risky; instead, the conspirators began assembling their own forces in the west, and on February 14th 1775 they kidnapped the Tsarina’s son Paul and spirited him away. The conspirators soon declared him to be Paul I, Tsar of Russia, and declared Catherine a usurper. Recent evidence indicates that Paul was a knowing member of the plot, his strained relationship with his mother was well known, and it is likely the ‘kidnapping’ was a ruse.

Nikita Panin:

The Russian state was now apparently on the verge of collapse. In early March Pugachev’s rebels took Kazan, another great blow to the government. The rebels now had control of much of the eastern bank of the Volga. Pugachev, upon hearing of the Panin rebellion, decided to move on Saratov, a major city on the Volga further south, the fall of which would open up the possibility of an offensive in the south. Kazan’s fall encouraged the conspirators. From their base at Minsk they were reinforced by a flood of new nobles who were abandoning Catherine. In May they moved east towards Smolensk. The Tsarina was not defeated though, she still had support and she ordered General Michelsohn west to confront Paul and Panin while she gave orders for a new army to assemble in the east to deal with the rebels.

Pugachev's Rebellion:

Russia: Rebellion and Rebirth
Part II

Tsar Paul’s forces continued to mass in the west, centred at Minsk, and their numbers rose significantly throughout the middle of 1775. In June they received word of General Michelsohn’s advance towards them and they decided the time was right to confront him. A diplomatic envoy was also dispatched to Pugachev and his rebels in the east. There was much controversy and argument within Tsar Paul’s supporters over this decision, but in the end it was decided that negotiation with the rebels might lead to better results than fighting them. So a mission was sent, heading south from Minsk they were to proceed through the Ukraine to the Volga and attempt to make contact with the rebels, all the while promoting the Tsar’s cause.

Tsar Paul:

Meanwhile in the east Pugachev’s campaign continued. In mid July, Saratov fell. This was a bloody battle and the rebel army suffered greatly for the city’s fall, but it was indeed worth it. With Saratov captured the Tsarina was effectively cut off from the Russian Empire east of the Urals, and any support she might have received from there was muted. Also, it opened up the south for a new offensive. However Pugachev needed time to rebuild his forces and thus he made camp at Saratov and sent out recruiting parties. The victory at Saratov did much to raise the credibility of the rebel’s cause and dissatisfied peasants, Cossacks, Tatars, Ukrainians and others flocked to their banner.

The turmoil in Russia however did not escape the notice of the outside world however. The neighbouring powers all soon attempted to use the chaos to their advantage. The Ottomans were the first to intervene. They began sending large convoys of aid to the rebels through the Caucasus and up the Volga in an attempt to gain favour with and aid the rebellion. They also took this moment to secure their own borders and began moving troops into Georgia and Armenia, both of which were in anarchy. The Poles too decided this was an opportunity to good to miss. In November King Louis authorised an invasion of Courland. The Russian protectorate was soon overwhelmed and under Polish control. The Prussians however did not take too kindly to the Polish move however, taken without Berlin’s knowledge, and relations between the two states soured. The Swedish king, Gustav III, too decided time was right for a rematch, and launched two incursions into Russia; the first in December into Karelia and the second in February 1776 in Estonia.

Russian Rebel Cossacks, Near Saratov 1775:

The foreign invasions convinced both Catherine and Paul that the civil crisis must be ended as soon as possible. Thus the two armies were spurred into action, both sides eager for a victory to improve their negotiating position. Unfortunately neither side got their wish. The following Battle of Polotsk was an inconclusive draw and both sides withdrew suffering casualties. In the meantime however Paul’s diplomatic envoy had reached the rebels in Saratov. A few days of negotiation ensued but eventually the two sides agreed on terms, Pugachev’s rebels would declare support and fealty to Tsar Paul, and the tsar would agree to a list of demands by the rebels. The mission took their leave and headed back west. Pugachev, inspired by the meeting, decided to make a risky move, and march northwest: towards Moscow.

In March the Swedes took Riga, thus confirming occupation of much of Estonia and the Baltic coast. Catherine decided to order Michelsohn to retake Riga and drive the Swedes out of Estonia, a move that she hoped would endear the people and nobility to her, putting Russia’s interests first, and win support for her cause. Whether this would have worked however will not be known for Michelsohn’s army was routed by the Swedes in May at the Battle of Volmar. In the meantime Paul and Panin had reorganised their forces and taken Smolensk before moving northwest to cut Michelsohn off from Moscow and the east. In June Pugachev faced Catherine’s army at Vladimir, just east of Moscow. The battle lasted two days but in the end the unmotivated and disaffected Imperial forces were routed, and the rebels took Moscow a few weeks later.

Pugachev's Rebellion:

The twin disasters at Volmar and Moscow were the end of the Tsarina’s reign. When word got out of the state of the campaign a palace coup was launched and Catherine was deposed. The conspirators invited Paul to enter St. Petersburg and take the crown, which he did in August. He moved quickly to win the favour of the people. He moved his army west and defeated the Swedes in a series of battles, cumulating in the Battle of Reval and expelling them. His army now was too exhausted and depleted to deal with the Poles in Courland and the Swedes in Karelia and he was forced to compromise sending delegations to Warsaw and Stockholm to discuss peace terms.

Pugachev meanwhile had not vacated Moscow. His army, too, still maintained control over large areas of the east. In January of 1777 Tsar Paul went to meet Pugachev in person. The two held a prolonged and tense discussion. In the end Pugachev and his followers announced their loyalty to Paul, disbanded and returned all territory to the Tsar. In return Paul conceded to a list of rebel demands, including the guarantee to respect the culture of the Cossacks and outlaw future persecution against them (a status that was later conferred to other minorities such as the Tatars and Ukrainians) and importantly the abolition of serfdom. He was also forced to concede to the demands of his supporting nobility, led by Panin. The principal one was the restoration of the Duma, and limited provincial democratic reform, a move that the aristocracy hoped would placate the masses and enhance their own power by a move to a more constitutional style monarchy. Over the next several years Tsar Paul began a period of reconstruction, liberalisation and westernization Russia, which, although limiting Russia’s role in external and foreign affairs, would lead in later years to the emergence of a strong, united, liberal Russia.

The American Tax Rebellion

British North America in 1760, following the Four Year’s War, consisted of three separate regions. The Caribbean was still Britain’s priority, the taxes and trade from these colonies, and the resources, were vital to Britain’s interests. The Thirteen American Colonies were populous and had a growing economy. And in the north British territories in the Hudson Bay region were sparsely populated but did a decent trade in furs and other goods. One of the principal attributes the three regions had in common, especially the northern pair, was threat of a powerful enemy: France.

Despite some successes in the Four Year’s War the British Thirteen Colonies still found themselves encircled by the French. The Colonials and the British had struggled against the French in North America in the war and had come away with little to show for it. To make matters worse the population of French North America had been growing at an increasing rate, and as each day went by the French threat grew greater and greater. The British therefore were forced to maintain a large garrison in the colonies at all times to dissuade the French of any aggressive actions. This however was expensive to maintain; a matter made worse by the war debts incurred between 1756 and 1760[1]. As such the Westminster Parliament passed the Stamp Act in 1765, in an effort to increase profits and combat the debt. The Stamp Act was greeted unfavourably by many in the colonies. However Parliament’s argument that the tax was there to pay for the colonies’ defence was taken to heart by many colonials. The redcoat garrisons were viewed favourably by the locals as every glance to the west and north was fearful of the surrounding French and their native allies. However not all colonials were appeased…

Notice of the Stamp Act:

Some colonials felt cheated by the tax, arguing that Parliament had no right to tax them as they had no representation themselves in parliament. The cry “no taxation without representation!” became their rallying call. They were however a minority group. Their numbers did increase slightly however in 1767 with the Quartering Act, which pertained to the housing the standing British army in the colonies. The Quartering Act as a whole, though unpopular, was tolerated by the colonists more so than the Stamp Act, due to the clear necessity of having a large garrison in the colonies with the French so ever present. However the dissenters soon formed into a group known as the “Sons of Liberty” and began organising in towns and cities, principally Boston.

In 1770 Parliament passed a new tax on tea. This tax was deplored by the “Sons of Liberty” and they began planning a demonstration against it. It was also unpopular throughout much of the colonies, and unlike the previous acts this one could not be seen as anti-French in anyway and many local assemblies complained about it. At Charleston in late 1771 delegates from a variety of the southern colonies drafted a letter to Parliament protesting the tax as unlawful and unnecessary. Following this Parliament voted to repeal that act in mid 1772. News of the repeal however did not arrive in Boston before the end of the year.

In June of 1772, unaware of the repeal, the Sons of Liberty decided to raid a collection of commercial ships in the harbour, which were rumoured to be carrying large quantities of tea. Dressed as native Indians they attempted to storm the ships. Unfortunately for them they encountered a local British garrison on patrol. Some of the leaders, including John Adams and Paul Revere attempted to abort the raid and call the Sons back. However some of the more impetuous members attacked the garrison. The British troops were taken by surprise. Unsure how to respond to the attack they had their choice made for them when one young Sons member struck a soldier with a tomahawk, killing him. In response the British opened fire killing several of the Sons members, including one Samuel Adams. In response to the commotion many locals emerged on the scene and seeing the fight many joined with the Sons and drove the garrison away violently. At the end of the day the garrison suffered two dead and four injured, while the Bostonians lost nine dead and a dozen wounded.

Rebel Samuel Adams:

The British response was swift and decisive. They moved a large force into Boston and placed the town under marshal law. An inquiry was launched into the incident but the authorities could not find those responsible and the Sons of Liberty escaped further prosecution. In Boston and much of Massachusetts, the attack was branded the “Boston Massacre” by the local printer Benjamin Edes, a Sons of Liberty member. His Boston Gazette told and retold the story of the “massacre”, and Boston soon seethed with quiet rebellion. This was however, in strong contrast to the mood of much of the rest of the colonies. Sure there were various local pockets of dissent that lauded the Sons, but the vast majority of people saw an attack on His Majesty’s soldiers as downright appalling and treasonous. This mood was seized upon by South Carolina governor Lord Charles Montagu who launched a rumour that the Sons of Liberty were working with the French and that the Boston incident was meant to distract the British troops from the border for a French invasion. This rumour spread like wildfire throughout much of the colonies, north and south. The credibility of it was helped enormously when in mid 1773 several French Indian tribes, led by the Shawnee, attacked British towns and forts near the Great Lakes, an act widely circulated by the Royalist papers as being backed by the French, while mentioning the Sons of Liberty as much as possible.

Lord Charles Montagu:

The result was that by the end of 1773 the vast majority of colonial subjects outside Boston and the surrounding area, were nearly convinced that the Sons of Liberty were a treasonous pro-French plot. In Boston however, they were heroes. Heroes, waiting for their next opportunity to strike. In early 1774 they got it. To combat the Shawnee raids the majority of the British garrison was pulled out of Boston and sent northwest. For the Sons of Liberty this was a chance to good to miss up. In May they attacked and seized garrison barracks and armouries all over Boston, as well as capturing and destroying HMS Gaspée which was in harbour at the time. The Sons were soon joined by much of the town’s populace and were forced to withdraw to nearby Breed’s Hill. Bu July the entire city of Boston was in the hands of the rebels. The news of the Boston Rising spread throughout much of the colonies. Local groups, sympathetic to the Sons’ cause, tried to repeat the act. They made little success however and were in most cases defeated, or forced to resort to a low level insurrection and guerrilla movement. In Philadelphia however they had some success. Philadelphia’s Royal Garrison, like Boston’s, had been pulled out to battle the Shawnee. In Philadelphia rebels managed to seize weapons and take over the town. They however, did not have the backing of much of the populace. The pro-Royalist faction rose up, but were unable to overcome the better armed rebels and were forced out of town.

The rebel’s success was short lived however. When word reached Parliament of the Boston Rising there was shock and outrage, feelings further incensed when word arrived of the numerous other aborted risings and the fall of Philadelphia. Many in Parliament advocated an immediate hard-line military response to crush the uprising and attacks on suspected pro-rebel individuals, a course strongly supported by King George III. The larger more moderate faction led by Prime Minister Duke Augustus FitzRoy had other views. The primary fear of the moderates was that the course advocated by the hard-liners would lead to open rebellion, something that had to be avoided with the French ever ready to move in, in addition to the fact that defeat in the Four Year's War had left Britain more war weary, less confident and more open to compromise than it might have been otherwise. So instead they opted for compromise. Representatives from the various colonies, Massachusetts excluded, were invited to Parliament to discuss the situation, while British forces began assembling to retake Boston and Philadelphia. In January of 1775 Parliament passed the Dominion Act, something strongly resented by the king, but with the monarchy still in disgrace with much of Parliament following George II’s pro-Hanoverian attitudes that led to the Treaty of Rotterdam and surrender in the Four Year’s War, the act went ahead. King George III, feeling resentful and snubbed, became a political recluse for the rest of his reign.

Prime Minister FitzRoy:

The Dominion Act divided the Thirteen Colonies into two large “Dominions” of New England and Carolina. Each dominion would have a ‘Parliament’ which was subject to Westminster and comprised of elected officials from the various colonies, each of which would maintain its colonial assembly. The Dominion parliaments, at New York and Charleston, would be able to deal with local issues, as well as each being able to send an observer to Westminster so the Dominion’s voices would be heard in Parliament. The Dominion Acts, though resented by parts of the government, was applauded by the colonial representatives and by those they represented.

The Dominion Act took the wind out of the rebel’s sails. When word reached the colonies of the act, rebels everywhere lost support. Many simply dissolved, most members seeing their cause as fulfilled and were placated by Parliament’s decision. This was indeed the case in Philadelphia, where the rebels became split and many laid down their arms and went home. The remaining rebels, including leaders Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson, were overthrown and captured by the pro-Royalist citizens supported by an arriving British detachment. The captured rebels were hung for treason. The rebels in Boston however did not back down. In August of 1775 the British forces, including a certain George Washington, began the siege of the city. A Royal Navy force arrived to blockade the city. In December the British assaulted the city and the rebels were overwhelmed and the city fell. The surviving leaders of the rebellion, including John Adams, Paul Revere and John Hancock were hung after being drawn and quartered, a gruesome yet effective response.

Executed Rebel Paul Revere:

After Boston’s fall the rebel cause eventually dried up. Various local militia’s continued to mount a hit and run campaign on the borders and in the wilderness up until about 1779. Some pro-rebel sympathisers emigrated, chiefly to Louisiana. Other Royalist members decided to leave and head for Canada or the Caribbean, not wishing to live in territories granted even so little autonomy. In the 1776 the first meetings of the Dominion parliaments went ahead faultlessly, and by 1780 martial law was finally lifted in Boston and the wounds of the rising had begun to heal.

Dominion Act:

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Philosophies and Ideas: The Enlightenment's Climax

The three decades between the end of the Four Year’s War and the tumultuous events of the 1790s saw the final stages of what has since been referred to as the Enlightenment. The events that followed it are regarded as nothing more than these ideas coming into fruition, or at least, trying to. The upheaval and turmoil these ideas were to cause and the efforts of the forces of reaction who opposed them were at the centre of the conflicts that dominated the close of the 18th century, a period that is now known as the Age of Revolution. This period was characterised by the emergence of several key philosophers in a variety of countries and continents. Their ideas embraced the new concepts of liberalism and republicanism, two ideas that did not sit too well with the majority of the leading members of the ancien régime.

The majority of these so-called Enlightenment thinkers, were French. And it is unsurprising therefore that the events of the Age of Revolution centred, for the most part, around France and its actions and repercussions. One of these philosophers is considered by many to be the father of the French enlightenment thinking was Francois-Marie Arouet, more commonly known by his pen name, Voltaire. Voltaire wrote heavily on the subjects of freedom of religion, civil liberties and against the corruption of the French monarchy. Upon the ascension of Louis XVI[1] in 1772 to the French throne, Voltaire returned to Paris from his self-imposed exile in Geneva. The French king’s actions towards reform, as honourable as they were, were not enough for Voltaire. He grew disgusted with the actions of the French nobility and aristocracy who prevented the king from carrying out his grandiose plans. In 1774 Voltaire emigrated to New Orleans, the first of the French thinkers to do so, but far from the last.


Another influential French philosopher of the period was Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Rousseau was originally from Geneva, but went to Paris in the mid-1760s. He wrote two very influential papers during this period, the Discourse on the Origins of Inequality and On the Social Contract. These two works were widely popular with the European liberal scene and attracted lots of attention and interest. Following the publishing of the Social Contract in 1764, King Louis XV ordered Rousseau to be exiled, and the writer returned to Geneva, where he continued to write. Upon Louis XV’s death, Rousseau, like Voltaire, returned to Paris where the two were often seen in deep discussion. Like Voltaire, Rousseau was disillusioned with the actions of the French nobility in its determined efforts to block the king’s reforms. Unlike Voltaire though, Rousseau grew increasingly radical and turned against the King and the entire establishment, whom he attacked in his 1774 work An Essay on the Broken Regime[2]. Like the previous works this one outlined what Rousseau thought was the perfect society, though more openly hostile and targeted at the Versailles regime. In 1775 Louis XVI, persuaded by his ministers, banished Rousseau from France. Instead of Geneva, Rousseau followed Voltaire’s example and went to New Orleans. Rousseau had originally believed that his radical vision of society would only work in a small un-populated state, such as Corsica[3]; however the great expanses and sparse population of Louisiana soon gained his attention. Consul Philippe Bardet remarked in his diaries that he overhead Rousseau once say that, “here in this great wilderness, we can begin anew; here we are once more in the state of nature”[4].


Other enlightenment thinkers played their parts too. Denis Diderot, another French thinker, also proved to be quite influential. His thoughts and writings on free will were groundbreaking in many aspects and were seized upon by many radicals. His scientific works, such as the Encyclopédie, were also quite popular amongst the educated elite. Like Rousseau and Voltaire he too moved to New Orleans in 1776, he died there ten years later. Other French thinkers and agitators too emigrate to New Orleans were Baron d’Holbach, whose controversial ideas on atheism appealed to a small community in the New World, the Marquis de Condorcet, Jacques Pierre Brissot, Jean-Paul Marat, who was Prussian by birth, and Georges Danton, to name a few. The result of this mass migration of reformists was that by the mid 1780s New Orleans had become the centre of the Enlightenment, and free of direct persecution they began to write, and meet, and plan, freely. For their part the powers that were in Paris, for the most part, were happy to see them go. New Orleans to them was the end of the world, and in France itself, the exodus of reformers allowed the aristocracy to tighten and increase their power, which they now believed to be unchallenged.


It wasn’t just France that played host to this, the final stage of the Enlightenment, though it was the centre. In the Dominion of New England, a writer known as Benjamin Franklin gained notable fame for his writings. His political work, centring on the ideas of community spirit and self-governance were influential in the forming and workings of the New England Parliament, where he indeed served as an MP for Boston from 1780-1786. He greatly applauded Britain’s passing of the Dominion Act and loyally served the crown and the Dominion all his life. It was his scientific studies that made him famous though, especially his work on electricity. When in London, which he visited frequently, his scientific displays, made him very popular in the scientific community. Elsewhere in Britain other great thinkers emerged on the scene, such as Paley, Burnett, Reid and others. The marginalisation of the monarchy following the Four Year’s War and the recluse of King George III following the Dominion Act allowed greater freedom of ideas in the country; and, ironically, would help save the monarchy in the years to come, as its appearance as an already marginalised institution helped shield it from attack. Ignacy Krasicki was a Polish philosopher whose ideas were very popular with King Louis I of Poland-Lithuania, whose own reforms and beliefs were greatly influenced by the Enlightenment. Johann von Herder, Mozart, Moses Mendelssohn and other German thinkers congregated in Vienna which had replaced Paris as the capital of the European Enlightenment. Russia itself was in the process of becoming a liberal monarchy under Tsar Paul I[5], and in St. Petersburg too many great thinkers were to be found such as Dashkova and Novikov. By the year 1790 it was clear that the east of Europe, Austria, Poland and Russia, was joined with Britain and the New World in the advance of liberalism and reform, while the countries of western Europe, France, Spain and others, resisted the march of progress. Something it was clear, had to give, and indeed it soon would, with monumental consequences.

Benjamin Franklin:

[1] Not OTL Louis XVI; instead his fahter, Louis, Dauphin of France
[2] Not OTL, new essay
[3] This was Rousseau's actual belief in OTL; that only Corisca would suit his plans for society, maybe an insight into why the attempted implementaion of his teachings in France failed as it did.
[4] From the "Diaries of the Revolution", published 1828.
[5] Following the Russian Civil War 1774-1777

The Triumvirate: Germany

In the approximately three decades following the end of the Four Year’s War and the outbreak of the Age of Revolutions the area of Germany was dominated by three principal powers: Prussia, Austria and Saxony. It was the actions and decisions of these three states that dominated the affairs, both internal and external, of Germany in this period. Other German states, such as Bavaria and Hannover, wielded notable influence, but the actions of Berlin, Vienna and Dresden were the principal factors in the development and actions of Germany in this period. The outcome of the Four Year’s War had left these three states as the dominant actors. They were not all equal however. Prussia had been seriously weakened by the loss of Silesia and East Prussia in 1760. Austria meanwhile was clearly the dominant actor in Germany, indeed it was arguably the principal continental European power after France. Saxony, was strengthened with the gains it received from the Treaty of Dresden and saw itself as Prussia’s equal in the following years. The term the German “Triumvirate” was originally used by the Italian writer Ludovico Vitruvi[1] in 1769, and became a popular term, and thus the period of Germany history from 1760 to the Parisian Rising is referred to as the Time of the Triumvirate. The shifting alliances and ploys between these three states would shape the future of Germany for years to come.

Maria Theresa, Empress of Austria:

Austria emerged from the Four Year’s War stronger and more influential than when it went in. The return of Silesia from Prussia was the major boost. Silesia was a wealthy and highly prised territory that helped contribute to the various undertakings of Austria in these years. Maria Theresa was Empress of Austria during the Four Year’s War until her death in 1779. Although staunchly conservative in many aspects Maria Theresa did oversee many reforms in the Habsburg territories during her reign. In 1761 she established the State Council, a group of elite officials to advise and assist the Empress in the running of the state. Reforms took place in the judicial system as well, as Maria Theresa outlawed medieval practices, but did not outlaw torture and continued its role in the state. She was staunchly Catholic and was a strong supporter of the Church, a stance that was generally approved by most of her subjects. In terms of her foreign policy Maria Theresa sought not only to enhance the power and prestige of the Habsburg Monarchy, but to maintain a balance of power in central and eastern Europe. During the Sardinian War (1772-1774) she intervened against Sardinia and negotiated a compromise following the French ultimatum. The resulting creation of the North Italian Confederation granted Austria considerable influence in northern Italy, with those states being in Austria’s debt, as well as granting Austria Venice’s Illyrian territories. In a more controversial move her decision not to intervene in the Third War of Polish Succession (1768-1772) in support of the Russians and King Stanislaw, was designed to prevent the Russian’s gaining too much control and thus in line with her preference of the balance of power.

Joseph II:

A crucial result of Maria Theresa’s actions in these two conflicts was the souring of relations with her allies France and Russia, a fact that had to be dealt with by her son Joseph, when he succeeded his mother in 1779. Joseph, more so than his mother, was a reformer. Also, and of great importance, was the fact that he failed to inherit his mother’s staunchly anti-Hohenzollern beliefs. The Russian and French allies both expired in the 1770s and were not renewed, both states having reason to distrust and resent Austria. Joseph then looked for an alternative option. What happened in 1783 is often known as the ‘Second Diplomatic Revolution’. This was the signing in June of the Austro-Prussian Alliance. Prussia’s decline meant that it no longer presented a major threat to Austria. Frederick William II, was not the man his father was, he was no warrior and jumped at the chance to ally himself with Austria and secure his kingdom. Joseph also saw this as a boost in order to fulfil his ambition to acquire Bavaria. Domestically Joseph launched a series of large-scale reforms. One of the most controversial, at least amongst the nobility, was his complete abolition of serfdom in 1780, inspired by Tsar Paul’s own abolition in 1777. He also pursued an aggressive policy of centralising, not only in terms of brining the empire together, but in terms of strengthening the power of the Emperor at the expense of the nobility. He also pushed through numerous other reforms such as compulsory education, religious toleration, making German the Empire’s official language and others. The result was that on the verge of the Age of Revolutions, Austria was a strong centralised and advanced state. The emergence of Vienna as the centre of the European Enlightenment following the exodus of French thinkers in Paris, is in no small way responsible for and also because of many of these reforms. Not everyone in the empire approved of Joseph’s actions however. Many in the nobility felt cheated and resolved to check the future pace of reform and in the eastern parts of the Empire the effective closure of the Hungarian assembly angered much of the populace in that region; these internal fissures would become evident in the Age of Revolutions.

Frederick William II:

Prussia, on the other hand, following the Four Year’s War was weak, divided, and effectively leaderless. Frederick William II, nephew and successor to Frederick II, was only sixteen when he ascended the throne. As such for the first few years of his reign he was under the guidance of a council of advisors, such as Heinrich von Mollendorf, Charles William Ferdinand Duke of Brunswick and Hans von Blumenthal. The influence of these military men in the early years of his reign was a major cause of his decision to intervene in the Third War of Polish Succession, a move that was definitely rewarded with the return of East Prussia in 1772. As he grew older however Frederick William II began to loose interest in military matters and foreign affairs in general. He turned instead to internal reforms and cultural developments. He like Joseph in Austria and Paul in Russia, was a great reformer and influenced by the ideas of the Enlightenment. His numerous reforms included infrastructure improvements, improvements in education, and also was benevolent towards the arts, sponsoring both Beethoven and Mozart in their professions. His foreign policy, or lack thereof, was passive, in staunch contrast to his uncle. He cared not for regaining the lost territories, something that infuriated parts of the nobility and of course the army. In 1767 he wed Sophia Albertina, daughter of the Swedish king Adolf Frederick, who was himself a weak king. In 1783 he concluded the Austro-Prussian Alliance, which included a clause in which Frederick William II withdrew any Prussian claims to Silesia, something which when it became known, further antagonised the military. The army declined too during his reign, although it was in dire need of reform the king did not pay much attention to it. In 1770 Frederick and Sophia gave birth to their first son, Wilhelm. Immediately the military managed to convince Frederick to place Wilhelm under the care of Molldendorf, who took it upon himself to have a great role in the life of Wilhelm. The result being that by 1790 Wilhelm resembled Frederick II much more than his own father, and he was a firm supporter of the military. By the time of the Parisian Rising, Frederick William II had domestically reformed Prussia but had lost the support of the military, who now looked to Wilhelm to restore their honour and importance, and with the turmoil to come many leading men in the army were to question the sense in Frederick leading the nation in such times.

Frederick Augustus of Saxony:

Saxony at the end of the Four Year’s War was in a much stronger position then when it entered it. Gains in its immediate neighbourhood as well as receiving Prussia’s territories in the west and the Rhineland turned Saxony into Prussia’s relative equal. The disaster of the Third War of Polish Succession changed all this however. King Frederick Christian’s ambition to enhance the power of Saxony backfired when they were defeated. Although they lost no territory, the financial indemnities owed, along with Prussia’s gains, meant that Saxony was once more thrust beneath its northern rival. Following the death of Frederick Christian in 1779 he was succeeded by his son who became Frederick Augustus I. Frederick Augustus had married Elisabeth, the daughter of Maximillian III Joseph of Bavaria[2] in 1770. This marriage alliance between Bavaria and Saxony was made into a full political alliance in 1784 following the Austro-Prussian alliance. This alliance was compounded when Maximilian III’s son, Charles, married Frederick Augustus’ sister Maria Amalia. The alliance between Saxony and Bavaria was seen as a necessity following the joining of Austria and Prussia. The Bavarian-Saxon alliance began trying to unify the smaller states of the Holy Roman Empire and alert them to the danger of the Austro-Prussian alliance. By the year 1790 Germany was divided into two armed camps and storm clouds were gathering across the Empire and Europe.

Maximilian III:


[1] A little cameo to Vitruvius who came up with the "Triumvirate"
[2] Maximilian III Joseph died childless in 1777 in OTL, he does not do so here

The World 1790: On the eve of the Age of Revolutions:


The Age of Revolutions
Part I: Vive le Revolution!

The approximate three decades following the Parisian Rising are oft referred to as the “Age of Revolutions”. During this time Europe and the Americas would be shaken by a series of revolutions, wars, counter-revolutions, civil wars and rebellions the likes of which have never been seen before or after. The spark of this tumultuous period was the so-called Parisian Rising. This event would ignite a far greater rising across the Atlantic before seeing the fire sweep its way across central and eastern Europe.

France at the dawn of the Age of Revolutions was at a crossroads in its history. It was a strong, proud and wealthy state. Victory in the Four Year’s War and in the Franco-Mysore War had left France with a dominant position in Europe as well as a formidable overseas empire. It’s current ruler Louis XVI [1] was the envy of the other monarchs of the world. Since he took the throne Louis XVI had on numerous occasions attempted to initiate numerous reforms throughout France, which were repeatedly blocked time and again by the actions and protests of the nobility. Louis XVI was unwilling to be drawn into conflict with the nobility and thus backed down, a process which gradually weakened his position in the eyes of the aristocracy. The failure of these reforms was one of the principal cause of the exodus of political thinkers that took place in the 1770s and 1780s, chiefly to Austria and New Orleans.

In practice what this meant was that the people of France were still in the same social and political status that they were before the Four Year’s War. As word of the reforms in Russia and Austria began to make themselves known amongst the general public, the call for such changes to take place in France. The most important desire being the abolition of serfdom, something the aristocracy were unsurprisingly reluctant to adhere to. Critically of course the common people had no notion of the ongoing struggle between nobility and king and to their knowledge it was the monarch who was preventing reform. This general mood was seized upon by those middle class reformers that remained in Paris. They decided to meet and draft a petition to the king calling for numerous reforms, chief among them freedom from serfdom and a calling for an elected legislature.

Word quickly spread throughout Paris about this meeting. Thousands flocked to the house of reformer and astronomer Jean Sylvain Bailly who had agreed to host the meeting. The sheer size of the crowd that was gathering shocked the reformers who had not counted on such a gathering. The crowd clamoured and swelled as each man, woman and even child attempted to get their name, or at least their mark, on the petition. The authorities unsurprisingly quickly became aware and responded. A large force of soldiers, drawn primarily from the Bastille prison moved to disperse the crowd. As always happens in such situations things got out of hand. A few members of the crowd began throwing rocks and swearing at the soldiers. One officer ordered his men to fire into the air in an effort to quieten and disperse the crowd, a fateful decision. Believing they were being fired upon the crowd started to panic. Many began to flee while still more charged the soldiers. A pitch-battle ensued as the crowd forced the soldiers back and back until the garrison was forced to take shelter in the Bastille. Before the siege began the garrison managed to get a messenger out, who rode straight for Versailles to warn the king of the situation. The crowd meanwhile, effectively a leaderless mob, besieged the prison fortress.

The Siege of the Bastille:

The king wasted no time upon hearing of the uprising. He began mustering his own forces to crush the rebellion. The king’s forces reached Paris several days after the messenger arrived. By the time they arrived it was clear that Paris was in anarchy. The Bastille prison still stood, although the garrison was on its last legs, while elsewhere in the city the reformist leaders were trying to regain control over the mob while opponents of the rising battled in other parts of the city in the king’s name. What followed was a week of street fighting as the garrison, joined by the arrived soldiers and sympathisers gradually dismantled and defeated the rising. Many of the reformist leaders fled the city, though some including Bailly were captured and executed. The turmoil spawned by the rising was not however as the word of the revolt had spread like wildfire and across France small risings were taking place everywhere with peasants attacking any sign of authority they could see. The most tumultuous results however would appear when word of the Parisian Rising made it across the Atlantic, to New Orleans.

By 1790 New Orleans had emerged a haven for reformists and agitators. Unlike their fellow reformers in Paris those in Louisiana had the benefit of being far-removed for the centre of royal authority and thus were able to act with less fear of repercussion. In late 1789 a meeting of reforms, businessmen, merchants, philosophers and academics had drafted a letter to the king calling for numerous reforms as well as a desire for Louisiana to receive local autonomy in line with that given to the British dominions to their east. Above all however, the letter made clear that those who wrote it considered themselves loyal Frenchmen ad servants of King Louis XVI. This letter however never reached the king. The fate of the document has never been accurately determined, though the most accepted argument is that the ship carrying it was sunk, either by natural or other means. The lack of response however was seen as a direct snub by the reformers in New Orleans, and resentment continued to fester in the colony. When word of the Parisian Rising reached the city it was as a spark that lit up the city. Spontaneous rallies erupted across the colony in support of the rebels. In Bâton-Rouge a large mob seized control over much of the town.

In New Orleans a group of influential people attempted to emulate the actions of their Parisian counter-parts. They organised a meeting and attempted to write a letter to the governor, Louis Blaise d’Abbadie, calling on him to speak to the king on their behalf. He refused and called out the militia. This proved to be a mistake as the city turned against him almost to a man. The militia, those that answered the governor’s call, fled the city. The governor then tried to establish a presence in Bâton-Rouge but they were again forced out. A running battle ensued as rebel forces, angered by decades of neglect by the king, drove the loyalist forces northward. In the meantime in New Orleans the rebel’s leaders formed a council in the old city hall and attempted to gain some level of control over the situation. Word began to arrive of the set backs in France so the council decided they needed to act soon before the king was able to move against them in force, as they assumed he would. The council soon became dominated by three leading individuals. The first was the ageing but fiercely respected philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau[2], émigré scientist and radical Jean-Paul Marat and a local well-regarded and charismatic businessman known as Philippe Bardet[3]. Debate over the direction of the rebel movement lasted days but in the end the more radical faction le by Bardet and Marat triumphed and on the 14th of July 1791 they declared the independent Republic of Louisiana (République de Louisiane).

Jean-Paul Marat:

The Declaration of Independence (Déclaration d'Indépendance), when it was published was greeted by huge celebrations across the southern portion of the colony, that part that was in rebel hands. The council, now re-branded the National Assembly began trying to form a country and more critically an effective resistance. When word of the declaration reached St. Louis, currently occupied by the loyalist forces, a huge tide of citizens rallied around the idea of their new nation and attempted to drive the soldiers out of the town. The loyalist soldiers were eventually driven out, but not before they had killed nearly a hundred St. Louis citizens. When word of this reached New Orleans it was seized upon by the Assembly, soon pamphlets lamenting the “St. Louis Massacre” appeared all over southern Louisiana. The result was a frenzy. Royalist citizens were attacked and driven out of their homes, armed groups began forming in cities, many men travelled to New Orleans to enlist in the rebel army.

By 1792 all of southern and western Louisiana was in rebel hands. The governor had retreated with what forces remained under his command to Detroit, where he was marshalling some form of resistance, while a letter had been sent to the king pleading loyalty and requesting aid. Further north in Quebec however the situation was quite different. A small uprising has occurred in Montreal but it has failed to significantly materialise and was crushed. The people of French Canada it seemed were with the king, and troops were soon begin sent south to Detroit to prepare to retake the colonies. In France meanwhile the rebellion was dying, and it was dying fast. The rebel forces has slowly been driven back into the southwest. A lack of resources, belief and a sharp division between the radicals led by one Maximilien Robespierre and the more conservative forces led by by Jean Joseph Mounier plagued the rebellion. Robespierre and his supporters eventually won out. They tried to initiate a draft of the people under their control to counter the royalist army now bearing down upon them, this served only to further alienate those that supported them. In late 1792 the King passed a series of acts, known as the Crown Acts. The Parisian Rising and subsequent rebellion had awakened the king to his people’s desires and he had decided to act, many of the nobility seeing the events in France supported him, and those that didn’t remained quiet. The act granted numerous reforms, including the abolition of serfdom, though it did not provide for an elected legislature. The passing of the Crown Acts brought the King wide respect and applaud from the French people, in addition Louis XVI wisely decreed that all those in rebellion who stood down now would be a granted amnesty, except the movement’s leaders. The rebellion collapsed; the vast majority of people defected or simply gave up. A few radicals, including Robespierre, continued to fight on in the west. By 1793 however the rebellion was dead, Robespierre and the other leaders were executed via the torture technique of the breaking wheel, and the king meanwhile was able to turn his attentions to Louisiana.


In Louisiana meanwhile the rebels had solidified their hold on the south and southwest. In March of 1792 they had passed the Declaration of Rights. In it was a list of basic principle human rights that the new republic would be based upon. In the Declaration was an abolishment of “slavery of all kinds” including serfdom. It also drew strongly from the works of Rousseau including his quote that “Free people, remember this maxim: we may acquire liberty, but it is never recovered if it is once lost.”[4] The preparing of the Louisianan Army received a massive boost when in May the HMS Triumph arrived in New Orleans carrying arms, supplies, cannon and British officers to help train the rebel forces. In August the Royalists moved south from their base at Detroit; they crossed the Mississippi north of St. Louis and met a hastily assembled rebel force at the Battle of Fort Orleans, a crushing Royalist victory. The Royalists then turned south towards St. Louis. The Royalist advance was slowed however by winter. In December with the Royalists nearing St. Louis a band of Louisianan hunters and rangers raided the Royalist camp, stealing weapons and setting alight ammunition stores. This victory, though small, did much to raise morale. In January however the siege of St. Louis had begun. Meanwhile a second Royalist army had advanced down the east bank towards the city of Crevecoeur, which fell in late December. They then turned southeast towards Ouiatenon. The National Assembly however had dispatched an army north under the command of General Charles Baptiste, a former French officer who had defected.

The new Louisianan Army fell upon the unsuspecting royalists outside the city and defeated them in a shock yet hard fought victory. The Louisianans then turned southwest to relieve St. Louis. The victory did much to raise spirits of the rebels and helped draw more men to the rebel banner, and a new force began to be assembled in the south. By now however the French had crushed the rebellion at home and dispatched a fleet carrying a force of 15,000 men to crush the Louisianans. The Battle of Ouiatenon however had convinced the powers that be in Westminster to support the rebellion, as an attempt to break French power in North America. In April Great Britain recognised the fledgling republic and declared war on France. The Dominion of New England enthusiastically followed suit a week later. The Dominion of Carolina too joined the war, though a bit more reserved as many of the leading members of the Charleston Parliament were uneasy about supporting a nation that opposed slavery. Nonetheless when Spain declared war on Britain and its allies, following a mixture of threats and promises by France, in May the Carolinans desire to seize Spanish Florida outweighed other reservations. The Louisianan Revolution had become a major European War, but much more fighting was yet to come.

A Map of French North America:

[1] Not OTL Louis XVI, but his father Louis
[2] His death by a haemorrhage did not occur in TTL
[3] Not an OTL person
[4] An OTL Quote

The Age of Revolutions
Part II: The Fires Spread

The fires of revolution that were kindled in Paris were to blow eastward as well as west. As Paris descended into violence and Louisiana began to sir the word of the rising in France would drift eastward across the European continent causing an orgy of rebellion, war, counter-revolution and civil war that would shock the globe. The first land that would feel the flames would be Germany. In early 1791 as word of the turmoil in France spread similar risings were to break out in much of the Holy Roman Empire. With the previous reforms in Russia and Austria in the east by now known, specifically in relation to serfdom, the populace in this region were already demanding similar reforms in their states, to little effect. When word of what the people of Paris had done hit Germany it pushed the situation over the edge as the German peoples decided to take action themselves to bring about their liberation. Risings in Stuttgart, Dortmund and Cologne achieved unexpected success, capturing the authorities there completely off-guard, and in each case were able to seize control of much of the city and the surrounding area. These early successes promoted more risings in the rest of Germany. An attempted rising in Frankfurt however was crushed, while those in Erfurt and Wurzburg were more successful.

Whatever the original goals of the risings had been in some cases it simply became an excuse for looting, murder and attacks on the aristocracy and the state. The riots in Dresden and Munich for example were simply cases of widespread lawlessness, which were eventually put down, hard, by the Saxon and Bavarian authorities. Nonetheless the leaders of numerous electorates, bishoprics and other entities were forced to bow to the pressures of the people, some indeed embraced the reforms willingly. Either way, between 1791 and 1793 a wave of reform swept across the southern and western parts of the Empire as serfdom was abolished and other reforms enacted in regions such as Wurttemberg, Wurzburg, Munster, Cologne and Hessen,. There were even glimmers of the emergence of a pan-German movement in the affected areas. An alliance of German states however was determined to prevent this wave of reform and decided to stop it. Led by Frederick Augusts of Saxony and Maximilian III of Bavaria the counter-reform forces moved westward in late 1793 intent on crushing the risings and roll back the reforms. In early September Bavarian forces captured Stuttgart and crushed the risings to the relief of the new Duke of Wurttemberg, Louis Eugene, who proceeded to undo all the reforms his predecessor, brother Charles, had been forced to enact. In the northwest however the reformist states, centered around the Rhineland, were determined to resist the armies of the counter-reform alliance and appealed for help from the model of German reform and liberalism, Austria.

Reformist Emperor Joseph II, ruler of the Austrian Habsburg empire was more than happy to intervene on behalf of the reformists. Some of his court were not entirely overjoyed at the prospect, being not too sold on the reforms of Joseph themselves, yet the chance to crush the Bavarian-Saxon alliance, looking increasingly worrying due to the declining health of Maximillian and the prospect of a dynastic union, sold them. On November 11th Austria declared war on the Bavarian-Saxon alliance and the war became a pan-German conflict. Almost immediately the war seemed to turn against the Counter-Reform Alliance as Habsburg troops from the Low Countries moved east into the Rhineland to support the reformists while an Austrian army under the command of Dagobert Sigmund von Wurmser gathered in Bohemia before marching south in December to invade Bavaria.

Joseph II:

On January 13th an Austrian-led army under Archduke Francis, son of Joseph II, defeated an Alliance army near Marburg, a great victory for the reformists. The Bavarians however managed to blunt the Austrian advance into their country in a battle near Regensburg in early February, critically though in this battle Charles, son of Maximilian, was killed when he was shot riding too close to the battle despite calls for him to remain in the rear. The tide however seemed to be with the reformists. Two events however were to dampen their prospects. First Maximilian III of Bavaria died in March, just weeks after his son's death, of what is now believed to be pneumonia. He was succeeded as Elector of Bavaria by his son in law Frederick-Augustus of Saxony, the dynastic union of these two states had come to pass. Frederick-Augusts reaffirmed his commitment to the struggle and now the war effort of these two-states were coordinated. The second was the actions of France. The outbreak of the war in Germany had alarmed France, even more so with the Austrian intervention. King Louis XVI and his advisers were determined to prevent Austrian hegemony in central Europe. The French state though could not effectively wage war against Austria on the continent while battling in Louisiana. So the French decided to abandon the struggle against the rebels there. There had been many in the French government who had been arguing against a prolonged campaign against the rebels in what was seen as a large wilderness; no, instead efforts should be taken to defend the important parts of the French colonial empire, namely Quebec and the Caribbean. The British declaration of war and the German crisis gave wait to this perspective. King Louis agreed and ordered the French army that was gathering in Quebec to stay there and fortify the region while a naval task force was sent to protect the Caribbean territories. Meanwhile the bulk of the French war effort now would be closer to home. On March 30th 1794 France, backing Frederick-Augusts' succession, declared war on Austria and the reformist states. The two wars were now linked.

The Austrian government responded by calling on their Prussian allies to enter the war on their side. The Prussian king, Frederick William II, refused not wishing to get involved in another war. The military was furious. Their pleas for the king to change his mind however fell on deaf ears though. The Austrians too were angry, and now had to face a serious challenge effectively alone. The Austrians were forced to increase taxes and conscript more men into the military, actions that caused great resentment in parts of the country, especially in Hungary. Elsewhere however the French were moving. A large army had moved into the Austrian Netherlands, causing Francis to lead his army back westwards to confront it. A second French army was assembling in the south, though for a move into Italy or Germany the Austrians were not sure. With the main Austrian strength departing the Saxons moved to counter-attack in the north. A reformist army was routed near Kassel and the Saxons now occupied most of Hessen. On June 2nd however Frederick William II died in Berlin. A quick autopsy was performed, the cause being given as heart failure, and the body was then ferreted away. Prussian troops meanwhile had moved to take control of large parts of Berlin at the behest of leading Generals that same night. It is now believed that Frederick William was suffocated as part of a military conspiracy. No matter the cause two days later his son Wilhelm was crowned Wilhelm I of Prussia. His first act was to declare war on France and Bavaria-Saxony and the army was moved southwards.

Prussian troops invading Saxony:

To the east however there too were a series of developments. Poland had largely ignored the revolutionary wave unlike Germany, however it would not be spared from bloodshed in this time. The current Polish king, Louis I, was in declining health, a brain tumour it was later discovered. He decreed that he wished to be succeeded by his son, Louis. This however spat in the face of the traditional electorate model used in the country. Opposition to this gathered quickly. Some nobles did not wish to abandon the elective model while on the other side some believed that a simple succession model with Louis' ascension would end the division and weakness of the past. Louis I died on May 18th 1794 and his son succeeded him as Louis II and the new constitution, providing for more reforms for the lower classes, the end of the liberum veto and the direct succession of the monarch amongst others, was enacted into law. Immediately rebellion broke out in the east of the country. Based at Wilno the rebels, led by Count Stanisław Szczęsny Feliks Potocki, set out to overthrow Louis II and abolish the constitution, portraying themselves as the defenders of the traditional Polish-Lithuanian elite. The country was plunged into Civil War.

Count Stanislaw Potocki:

The Prussian entry again shifted the war. A Prussian army under General Blucher invaded Saxony while another force was sent westward to help free Hessen of the Saxon forces there. The French however achieved a great victory at Namur on August 11th 1794 in the Austrian Netherlands forcing Francis and his army to retreat. The victory at Namur prompted Charles Emmanuel IV, King of Sardinia and husband to Marie Clotidle, daughter of the King of France and aunt to the new King of Poland, to enter the war on the French side. The Sardinian forces immediately declared war on the Austrians and their allies the North Italian Confederation. The Confederate forces were woefully unprepared and were driven back. At the Battle of Bergamo (November 9th) King Charles' brother, the Duke of Aosta, the commander of the Sardinian army there, was injured and forced to retire from the battle. In the confusion of his withdrawal the Venetian and Parmese forces threatened to overwhelm the Sardinians, but they were stopped dead by a young Corsican officer, Napoleone di Buonaparte, who using mass artillery halted the allied advance, before taking command of the Sardinian right wing and launching a successful counter-attack that broke the Allied army. When told of this feat the Duke of Aosta had Buonaparte promoted and appointed him to be his second. Meanwhile a second Sardinian army under King Charles himself, supported by the French fleet, managed to overwhelm the Genoans and seize their capital. The French army gathering near the Swiss border now moved eastward into Wurttemberg on their way to assist the Bavarians fighting the Austrian invasion. The Duke of Parma, Ferdinand, surrendered after Bergamo, seeing how he was married to the aging French king's daughter this was hardly surprising.

While the French and their allies seem to have the ascendency in Italy, in northern Germany the story was different. In January of 1795 representatives from Britain, Austria, Prussia, the nations of the North Italian Confederation and a collection of allied German states had signed an alliance in Berlin aimed at preventing the Saxon-Bavarian union and driving back the French. This alliance became known as the Coalition. Soon after Prussian forces, joined with British and Hanoverian soldiers, defeated a force of Saxons near Munster and began a campaign to drive them out of the Rhineland. Meanwhile Archduke Francis had reformed his army, which, fresh with reinforcements from reformist Hessen and Munster, managed to prevent the French forces in Flanders from taking Aachen, the west of the former Austrian Netherlands remained in French hands though. In the east of Germany the fighting raged. The Austrian advance, checked at Regensburg, again moved forward as the Bavarians were this time defeated near Eichstatt in April and forced to abandon the lands north of the Danube and wait for the French forces to arrive to support them. Another Austrian army begun an advance into Venetia to help their allies there against the Sardinians. In June however a rebellion broke out in Hungary where the locals, angered by the treatment from Vienna and inspired from rumors of the German and Parisian risings, rose up and attacked local garrisons and causing all manner of nuisance, the Austrian army was thus redirected from Italy to tackle it.

On the other side of the Atlantic meanwhile the French change of tactics due to the outbreak of hostilities in Europe effectively saved the Louisianan Revolution. In June of 1793 the French task force that was en route to Louisiana was attacked by a combined Royal Navy and Royal New England Navy fleet and forced to redirect to the Caribbean and French Saint-Domingue. The rebels were now granted some leeway as French forces to their north were ordered back to defend Quebec. The Louisianan National Assembly now attempted to consolidate its position. The rest of 1793 was spent gaining control of the rest of the country south of the Great Lakes, as well as continue to equip and train their army with British support. The Carolinans meanwhile had invaded Spanish Florida and were making great gains and by March of 1794 most of the peninsula was in their hands. A Franco-Spanish fleet was defeated by the British and their Dominions near the Bahamas in April effectively ending any hope the Spanish may have had of aiding the fighting in Florida. In May a New England army, under General Anthony Wayne invaded French Quebec while another force moved west into the disputed Ohio region to claim it for New England. While the fighting in Ohio went well for New England, with most French forces pulled out of the area, the advance into Quebec did not. A few miles east of Montreal the French beat back the invaders and it was only the timely arrival of a British force that checked the French counter move into New England. The Parliament at Boston authorized the raising of a new army. Around 20,000 men were gathered and British officers began training and arming them, like they did for the Louisianans. In mid 1794 a Spanish army invade Louisiana from New Spain. They were defeated however, as much due to the Louisianan resistance as the lack of motivation from the Spanish troops. The enthusiastic Louisianans now drove south into New Spain, though they did not get very far. Things in New Spain were to change dramatically though when in August the Viceroy of New Spain, Juan Vicente de Güemes, was deposed and arrested by a band of rebels, inspired by the Louisianan rebellion. It soon became clear that this was no spontaneous rising, as other revolts broke out throughout New Spain, many rebels were armed with what appeared to be British weapons. Hearing the news of the rebellions the new Louisianan army resumed its offensive into New Spain in an effort to link up with and support the rebellion. Many Spanish forces, most native to the colony, mutinied and went over to the rebels and by 1795 all of New Spain was awash in a three-way struggle between rebels, loyalists and Louisianans while the rebel leaders in Mexico City debated on what they should do next.

Also this is a map of the alliances of the Revolutionary Wars at this time:


The Age of Revolutions
Part III: Sparks in the East

Russia. The Land of the Tsars had endured its own revolutionary activity in the 1770s and thus was one of the few countries not to be plagued by upheaval in this period, not to say it was immune from the revolutionary tide however, far from it. By early 1795 Tsar Paul I had been in power for nearly two decades and he had not been idle. Honouring his promises made during the Civil War, Paul had continued the liberalization and modernization of Russia. The Duma had survived and become more assertive and had helped Paul mold the nation into a more recognizable constitutional monarchy, modeled on Britain's but slightly more autocratic and restrictive. The Duma had now become home to two main groups, not quite political parties but moving in that direction. On one hand were the Moderates, who generally backed the Tsar's reforms, and on the other were the Conservatives who were opposed to further liberalization. The Moderates were led by Count Alexsi Panin, son of Nikita who had aided the Tsar in the Civil War. Count Alexsi was young and was a staunch proponent of constitutionalism as well as supporting the lower classes. He was an admirer of Joseph of Austria as well as of Britain in general and advocated entering the war on their side. The Conservatives on the other hand tended to rally around Count Alexei Grigoryevich Orlov whose brother, who had died a few years previous, was a close friend to Catherine II. The two sides continually battled in the Duma, though the Moderates were almost always in the majority. Elsewhere the serfs had been freed from bondage and consequently local representation at provincial levels had become the norm in parts of western Russia while the minimal Russian middle class had begun to grow and many former serfs saw themselves migrating to cities or working for pay on noble estates and even on their own as part of Paul's reforms was to allow peasants to purchase their own land, which was kept cheap; though it was often far from the most desirable land.

Alexei Grigoryevich Orlov:

The early 1790s were quiet in Russia and the only real threat was if the Conservatives tried anything too radical to stop the reforms. In late 1789 for example a few minor nobles were executed for plotting a coup against Paul, although doomed in all likelihood, regardless the threat of such an event occurring caused Paul and Panin to maintain a close eye on disaffected members of the aristocracy. Two events however were to bring the revolutionary age to Russia and shake it out of its calm. Firstly a series of Cossack risings along the Volga broke out in late 1794. The Russian garrisons in the area were overwhelmed as those in power did not take the risings seriously and most Russian troops were in the west gathering for a possible intervention into Poland, currently in civil war. The Cossack risings convinced some to believe they should postpone any Polish campaign until the issue was dealt with, while others thought they could be ignored and Poland should come first. When word came however that Cossacks were intending to march on Azov, a rumour that turned out to be unfounded, Paul ordered troops east and the invasion of Poland postponed. The second and more dramatic event occurred in mid 1795, as Russian troops moved in force against the Cossacks, when the Balkans erupted.

The Ottoman Empire in 1795 was ruled by Sultan Abdülhamid II, who, like his father and namesake, was not a dynamic individual whose reforms were few and far between. Though the Ottoman Navy was strengthened, as it had been by father and grandfather, following the Ottoman naval victory over Russia in the Third War of Polish Succession, the army and government were still obsolete. A series of revolts in Syria and Greece were put down in the late 1780s, but the Sultan's passive nature in dealing with these and other problems antagonized many Ottoman nobles who increasingly looked to the Sultan's charismatic and reform-minded younger brother Mustafa as a possible leader. The biggest test was yet to come for the Empire however. In June of 1795 Hungary rose up in rebellion against Austria. The Ottomans, hoping to capitalise on a weakened Austria, began moving troops to the border. This however backfired dramatically. Inspired by the Hungarian rising next door, and rumours of such events elsewhere, the Balkan Christian subjects of the Ottomans were already stirring. The arrival of Ottoman troops, who were clearly intended to wage war against Austria and, in the views of the peasantry, stamp out any such rising in Ottoman territory, raised the temperature massively. Rioting soon broke out in Belgrade and Sarajevo. Ottoman troops reacted badly, disillusioned and unmotivated, and most dangerously, bored, attempted to forcibly disband the mobs. They lost. Serb rebels chased the Ottomans out of Belgrade and the surrounding area. In the town of Nish, which had also risen up, the Ottoman troops, mainly unchecked Janissaries, massacred the rebels and then proceeded to pillage the town. The Ottoman authorities were appalled and tried to restrain the troops, the Serbs though were incensed, and soon the whole region was in revolt, aided by Hungarian rebels who began supplying the Serbs with whatever weapons they could spare. The rebellions spread to Bosnia, Greece and then to Wallachia and Moldavia. The new Prince of Moldavia was the idealistic Alexandru Callimachi. He has been greatly interested by the news coming from the west and the Serb risings gave him an opportunity he couldn't miss. On November 3rd, he and his few advisers arrested all Ottoman officials in Jassy and declared the total independence of the Kingdom of Moldavia and immediately sent messengers to St. Petersburg asking for Russian aid.

Tsar Paul and the Duma leaped at the chance to expand the empire at the expense of their ancient enemy the Turks. The conflict united the Russian government as Conservatives and Moderates both rallied behind the Tsar and the army in this enterprise. While Russian forces campaigned along the Volga against the rebel cossacks, a new Russian army was gathering in the Ukraine for a move south. Under the command of General Alexander Vasilyevich Suvorov, who had served with distinction in the War of Polish Succession. Suvorov's orders were to advance south into Ottoman Crimea while sending a small detachment to assist the Moldavian uprising. Once Crimea was in Russian hands he was to move west and strike south into the Balkans. Moldavia itself at this point was nearly entirely in the hands of the rebels. The Ottomans were bringing troops from the east and assembling them in Thrace to take on the Moldavians and Russians while the current forces were regrouping to deal with the risings in Greece, Bosnia and Serbia.

In March Prince Nicholas Mavrogenes of Wallachia, inspired by events around him, declared Wallachia to be independent. A series of small clashes broke out and the Ottomans, who were preparing to strike into Moldavia, were forced to withdraw south and east to Silistra. Meanwhile in Serbia events were rapidly getting out of hand for the Ottomans who were battling Serb militias as far south as Sofia. Russian forces meanwhile had won a serious victory in the Crimea and were besieging Sevastopol. In Bosnia however the Ottomans had effectively crushed the uprising and now were moving east to confront the Serbs. The Greek revolt however was more serious and Athens was firmly in rebel hands. At the beginning of May 1796 the Balkans were ablaze as Russian troops entered Moldavia to prepare for a campaign south. Those in power in Vienna looked on in stunned disbelief as there backyard was torn apart in bloodshed and the Austrians were now determined to wrap up their own interior issues and the war to the west in order to take a hand in the Balkans. The Ottomans appeared to be on the retreat on all fronts and Abdülhamid II was increasingly isolated in the halls of power.


The Age of Revolutions
Part IV: World Aflame

1795 was a year of blood. War, revolution, counter-revolution, rebellion, civil war and anarchy dominated the globe. From New Spain to Poland and from Germany to Canada the world was at war. In North America what had started as a small rising in New Orleans had transformed the continent. The Louisianan rebels by now seemed safe. The Republic of Louisiana was by now an established entity and a French reconquest was out of the question. The government in New Orleans was now attempting to create a country in more than just name. Of the old trio of leaders only Philippe Bardet remained. Rousseau and Marat had both died (Rousseau 1792 and Marat 1794) previously and had been buried with great honour and ceremony in New Orleans. Philippe Bardet was now the leading statesman in the National Assembly, though he was far from the only person of note. Local lawyer Jean Laurent (who had strong support from the local elite) as well as French emigres Adrien Duport and Jérôme Pétion de Villeneuve, who had both arrived in Louisiana after fleeing the failed rebellion in France, all were well respected and influential. The Assembly, after much dispute, finally drafted a constitution that was published in November of 1795. The National Assembly was to be an all elected body (first elections scheduled for 1796). All males over the age of twenty-one could cast a vote and any over twenty-nine could run for office. The Republic was divided into départements each would elect a representative. The First Consul would be elected separately and would govern for a five year term and was not re-electable. The First Consul would be the face of the Republic but the majority of administrative power lay with the Assembly. Philippe Bardet was chosen by the Assembly to be the nation's first First Consul. The tune of Chant de guerre pour l'Armée du Rhin [1] had become very popular during the revolution having come over with rebels fleeing from France. The Assembly voted to make it the new nation's anthem and it was renamed the Call of the Revolution (L'Appel a la Révolution). The Assembly also agreed on the nation's new flag, as during the revolution there had been a series of standards used. The government eventually decided to use a tricolour design, popular during the revolution. It would be comprised of red (for the blood of the revolutionaries), white (for old France and their heritage) and blue to represent the Atlantic Ocean that separated the two.

The flag of the Republic of Louisiana:

The fighting in North America was far from over though. Around the Great Lakes and in the Ohio Valley there was still a raging conflict. French, Lousianan, British, New Englanders and native Americans fought bitterly for control of this region. The British soon became aware that the French had been making overtures to Native tribes in this region and further west and attempting to encourage them to attack the British and their allies. The British pre-empted any such action. They sent out their own feelers and manage to win the loyalty of several major tribes, such as the Shawnee, Santee and Fox by promising them their own lands and an independent Native American state(s) after the war, a promise the British did indeed keep. This swung the battle in this area to the British and the French were gradually pushed out of the Ohio Valley and back to Detroit. In Florida the Carolianans continued their offensive and by the beginning of 1796 all of the Spanish territory was in Carolinan hands, expect for parts of West Florida which were in Louisianan hands. A few small skirmishes actually broke out between Carolina and Louisiana in this region, the start of the long feud between New Orleans and Charleston. In late 1795 the New Englanders launched a renewed drive into French Canada and succeeded in rolling back the French advance into New England the previous year and soon threatened Montreal. The main conflict though was in New Spain. The colony had dissolved into violence following the coup in Mexico City in August 1794. The Spanish were completely unprepared for a major rebellion, having already suffered severe naval defeats to the British and their Dominions. It soon became clear though that the rebels had underestimated the level of loyalist support in the colony and it was only the arrival of Louisianan troops in the north and a British landing at Veracruz in June 1795 that enabled the rebels to gain the upper hand. The loyalist forces withdrew south and centered their resistance around Antequera. From mid 1795 to early 1797 the loyalists would find themselves, devoid of assistance from Spain itself, pushed back until they were into Guatemala where they put up a strong enough resistance to dent allied incursions. In March of 1796 the rebel leaders met to create a constitution of the new country. The issue of the name of the new state dominated the congress. Many favoured the name Mexico, after the capital; this was especially supported by those who wanted a strong federal government. But those who preferred a collection of the various provinces (each determined to retain some autonomy) were the majority and favoured a name that would reflect this political structure. So on October 1st 1796 the new independent United Provinces of America (Las Provincias Unidas de América) in Mexico City. The new government was structured around a series of Provincial Parliaments who were strongly autonomous, all subservient to a National Senate in Mexico City. The nation's leader was to be (drawing from the British model) a Prime Minister representing the dominant party in the Senate, which had already seen two 'parties' form: the Federalists and Provincialists. Although this system provided for a weak central government it enabled the new nation to come together. Spanish rule in Guatemala and further south was, for the moment, stable and secure.

In Europe meanwhile the continent continued to wage war. The Saxon forces in the Rhineland were now in retreat as the combined British-Hannoverian-Prussian forces advanced. The Austrian Low Countries were now in French hands however and the armies of France were pouring into Germany. In the east though the Austrian armies had scored several key victories against the Bavarians and by mid-1795 were threatening Munich. The Austrian war effort however was faltering. The Hungarian rising had caused many Austrian troops to be withdrawn from the front to confront it. Things were compounded when the Balkans erupted in 1795-6. The Serbian and Danubian risings scared Vienna; the Russian intervention terrified them. Joseph II and his court feared a Russian dominated Balkans on the back door far more than a union of Bavaria and Saxony. This shift in focus to the east caused the Austrian commitment to the fight in Germany began to erode. Consequently a Franco-Bavarian force was able to defeat the Austrians near Freising in February 1796. The fighting in Italy also continued to go against the Coalition. The Sardinians, with French support, continued to go from success to success in northern Italy. By the summer of 1796 only Venice in the north remained free. The Prussians and their Rhineland allies were now determined to achieve a great victory so they could gain a favourable peace before Austria was forced out of the war. They got one, sort of, in May 1796 when Leipzig was captured. Fighting in the east however continued to drag on as a French army fought a Prussian-led force near Bonn to a standstill.

Blucher leading Prussian troops in Saxony, 1796

In April of 1796 the British Parliament passed the Reform Act of 1796, spearheaded by the liberal minded Prime Minister William Pitt. The British government had been coming under great pressure to push through more modern reforms as it had continued to support the radical revolutionaries in the New World and was getting left behind. The Reform Act was Westminster's attempt to catch-up as it were to the new liberal wave. Chief amongst the reforms were Catholic Emancipation, abolition of the slave trade [2] and greater emancipation for men (though not all), as well as slightly more autonomy to the Irish Parliament. This was opposed strongly by the king and his supporters. However the king was a political exile and recluse, and was still in dishonour following his behavior in the Four Years War. A British politician from Kent gave a speech denouncing the king as “backward”, “ancient” and “mad” and more than hinted at a removal of the monarchy. Although he was condemned by his peers, this speech (known as the Kent Speech) is often regarded as the birth of modern British Republicanism. The king however was furious, he left the country and took up residence in Hanover. The reformers in Parliament pushed through a law making illegal for the monarch to be outside of Britain for more than two months without Parliamentary approval. When George III refused to comply with the law Parliament condemned him and demanded his return. George, never one to take demands well, abdicated the throne; yet he maintained the title of Elector of Hanover and continued to reign there. Prime Minister Pitt was overheard to remark that George III was “sulking like a naughty child”. The king's abdication, something his advisers had cautioned him against, took Parliament by surprise and the issue of succession became paramount. Some argued that a monarch was not needed and pushed for a republic, like Louisiana or the UPA. But they were a minority and George IV was crowned in November as King of Great Britain and Ireland, while his father still ruled in Hanover. Many in Parliament were overjoyed at this turn of events not only had they got rid of the mad George III and replaced him with his (much more liberal and co-operative) son George IV, but they had finally freed themselves of Hanover, long seen as a unwanted territory by Westminster.[3]

William Pitt the Younger:

In the east meanwhile war also raged. The Polish Civil War had been frozen in fear of a Russian invasion, but as those Russian troops turned south the internal conflict reignited. King Louis II was eager to assert his rule and stamp out the rebellion so he could support his ally, France, and his grandfather King Louis XVI, in the war to the west. The rebels, as is so often the case, were unable to act coherently, divided on what course to take. A battle near Minsk in mid-1795 was a victory for the loyalists. The rebels retreated and managed to win a follow-up clash near Troki in December. The war would rage on for another year as the rebels were able to just prevent their total defeat by fighting a series of inconclusive draws. In early 1797 the Loyalist forces trounced the rebels near the Russian border and captured several rebel leaders, including Count Stanislaw. Without its leaders the rebellion soon collapsed, with only a few small rebel holds outs and skirmishes continuing on into mid 1798. With the internal difficulties mopped up however King Louis moved his focus to the west and prepared to intervene in the German crisis, which looked to be winding down. In the Balkans meanwhile the fighting continued, and not well for the Turks. The Russian army achieved a colossal victory in Wallachia in August 1796 and the city of Sevastopol in the Crimean fell soon after. These twin defeats rocked the Ottoman establishment. The Ottoman Sultan, Abdülhamid II, recalled the army in Bosnia to defend Thrace from the Russians, effectively conceding victory to the Serb rebels, who went on to seize much of the region. The Russian advance was halted at Varna however in early 1797 and the Greek uprising was running out of steam. Abdülhamid II however soon died under mysterious circumstances (a small coup by a few generals) and was succeeded by his brother Mustafa. Mustafa began pulling Ottoman troops from Egypt and the east to shore up the Balkans forces and prepare for a counterattack. He also sent messages to Tatar groups in the Caucasus and inspired them to revolt against the Tsar causing Russia to send troops there. Prince Alexandru Callimachi of Moldavia meanwhile had for all intents and purposes won his country's independence. He now set out to establish a national identity (the first true case of nationalism in Europe). Attempting to depict Moldavia as the heir to a Greco-Slavic culture and the true people of the Balkans he rallied his people around the idea of the “Heirs of Byzantium” (not too appreciated by the Russians). In Wallachia however things weren't as rosy for Prince Nicholas Mavrogenes. His coup had been far less successful and opposition to him was widespread. When he tried to proclaim himself King he was opposed by many nobles who did not support the power grab. Violence broke out and soon Wallachia had descended into anarchy as the leading elites turned on each other. The turmoil only ended in March 1798 when Moldavian and Russian forces took Bucharest and found that Mavrogenes had been murdered and dumped in an alley. Wallachia now fell under Moldavian influence, and the fates of the two countries became intertwined. The war here though was entering its final stage as the Ottomans now attempted to save what could be saved and Tsar Paul began drawing up his new plan for the Balkans.

In the German and Italian wars things seemed to be unraveling for the Coalition. George III, now solely Elector of Hanover, had withdrawn from the war after abdicating the British throne depriving the Coalition of an important ally and forever earning him the enmity of the reformist states and Prussia. The French had counter-attacked and were now across the Rhine in the north while slowly liberating Bavaria from the Austrians. The Prussian drive into Saxony was more successful however and was soon threatening Dresden. A huge defeat near Marburg in early 1797 by a combined Franco-Saxon force was a major setback for the Prussians. At Marburg the neglect of the Prussian army under Frederick William II was made obvious as the Prussian infantry lacked the precision and ferocity of the past and were outmatched by the more experienced French troops. The Austrians meanwhile were in a bad state. They were being driven back in Italy and South Germany, the Balkans were being gobbled up by the bear and the Poles were moving into the border having ended their Civil War. The aging Joseph II was now beginning to consider making peace with France and Bavaria to avoid total collapse. The Bavarians achieved a shock victory near Innsbruck in November and Frederick-Augusts took this moment to announce his new title of Frederick-Augusts I King of Saxony and Bavaria, and renouncing any obedience to the Holy Roman Empire or its emperor Joseph. France immediately backed this move and encouraged other allied German states to follow suit. Ironically this gave Joseph an opportunity to solve the Hungarian crisis. In late 1797 he, and his supporters, pushed through a new constitution which gave the Hungarians increased authority and a parliament at Budapest, subservient to Vienna. Abandoning the Imperial title, now bereft of any true meaning, he decided to unify the two halves of his realm completely and on November 10th 1797 declared the United Empire of Austria and Hungary (or the Austro-Hungarian Empire) claiming a new title of Emperor and renouncing the position of Holy Roman Emperor, a move that placated the Hungarians and seemed to win over the support of much of the nobility in both halves of the new Empire. Freed from the internal difficulty more troops could be sent to stem the enemy advance in the west. After over eight hundred years of existence the ancient Holy Roman Empire had ceased to exist.

An artist's depiction of the Battle of Innsbruck:

Despite this the tide looked to be turning strongly against the Coalition. Austria-Hungary had been forced on the defensive and the Prussians and their allies were on the retreat in the Rhineland. In Italy the Sardinian forces under the Duke of Aosta had defeated a Venetian army, again thanks to the brilliance of di Buonaparte, before being forced to abandon the siege of Venice itself in early 1798 by the timely arrival of the British fleet. Efforts by the coalition to entice the Dutch into joining the war had fallen on deaf ears. By mid 1798 the Coalition were on the retreat across Europe and would likely have been forced into a humiliating peace if it hadn't been for the Spanish explosion in May..

[1] OTL La Marseillaise
[2] The abolition of the slave trade would soon be followed by the ending of Slavery in the British Empire completely. This as can be imagined will cause great antagonisms with the Dominion of Carolina which will erupt in the near future.
[3] It cannot be stated how different British internal politics in this timeline are different from OTL because in this war Britain is supporting the radicals, not fighting them. In our timeline republicanism and liberalism in Britain during the 1790s and early 1800s was seen as pro-French and treasonous thus preventing any successes for these movements. In this timeline however reform and political progress are being embraced and thus we are seeing a Britain whose politics are about 50 years ahead of its time.

The Age of Revolutions
Part V: Spreading Embers; Dying Ashes

Within the British Reform Act of 1796 was a law abolishing the slave trade within the British Empire and its Dominions. Though well received in Britain and New England it struck a chord with the elites in Carolina and the Caribbean colonies, who saw their fortunes and the economies of their states under threat from this new law. In the Caribbean there was a great deal of mumbling and finger pointing but eventually they just got on with it, and instead focused on using the slaves they already had to expand their workforce. Things were different in Carolina however. The Carolinans had been growing increasingly restless for some time now. The government in Charleston had been reluctant to enter the war in the first place, wary of the revolutionary message in New Orleans, and only the prize of Florida had enticed them into the conflict. Now that Florida however had been occupied, what more reason was there to fight? Charleston had even begun sending out peace feelers to the Spanish. The men in Charleston were determined not to let Westminster determine their future. The abolition of the slave trade did not go down too well in Carolina therefore. The economy of the Dominion was based on cash crops harvested by slave labour. In the Parliament in Charleston the ruling elite condemned the move, and following a bitter debate, decided to ignore the measure and continue importing slaves. The government of the Dominion increasingly under the sway of men, such as Virginian MP James Madison, who advocated a more determined course of action and breaking Westminster's hold over the Dominion.

Things came to a head in late 1797 when a Carolinan vessel carrying slaves from West Africa was intercepted by a British warship en route to the Caribbean. The British suspicious of the intentions of the other ship, boarded it. When the British captain discovered what was in the hull he immediately seized control of the ship and escorted it back to British Jamaica where the Carolinan captain and crew were imprisoned. The “Endeavour Incident” (named after the Carolinan ship) as it became known caused a fury in the Carolinan cities. The government decried the action as impugning on Carolinan commerce and sovereignty and demanded an apology from Westminster. The British refused to give one, saying that the Endeavour had been carrying out an illegal act and the Royal Navy was well within its rights to seize the vessel, after all Dominions had no sovereignty. Very well then, said Charleston, we will seek to change that. A faction in the Charleston Parliament began advocating total independence from Britain. The call was led by Madison, who it turned out had had many links with the American rebels of the 1770s. There was deadlock in Charleston over what course to take, however a rumour (that turned out to have been unfounded) that Britain was preparing to return Florida to Spain in exchange for territory in Europe, swung the vote. On January 12th 1798 the Dominion of Carolina declared full independence and renamed itself the Confederacy of American States with Madison as acting President. They began preparing for war.

Acting CAS President James Madison:

The break-away of the Confederacy of American States (CAS) had severe impacts on the rest of the fighting in the Americas. The conflict with the CAS drew British focus away from Latin America to deal with the issue. Louisianan forces too began withdrawing from the south to focus on the new threat along their western border. The withdrawal of allied forces had a profound impact on the United Provinces of America and its battle with the Spanish too the south. The UPA was a vast nation with a wide-ranging rural population. The process of uniting the nation properly was a tiresome one. Américan forces were tide up working with the local Provincial governments to fully gain control of all former Spanish territory north of the Yucatan, a process which was only fully complete by 1800. With large portions of the Américan military tied in up in this process very little manpower was left for the campaign in the south against the Spanish Loyalists. Consequently the government in Mexico City reached out to the Mayan populace of central America. Offering them a place in the UPA with considerable autonomy and a recognition of the rights and difference of Mayan cultural society the Américan government was able to win over their support and prompt them to rise up against the Spanish. This rising threw the Spanish into retreat and the Américan forces drove south towards the Panamanian Isthmus on the orders of Américan Prime Minister Ignacio Allende, a former Spanish soldier who had joined the revolutionaries during the rising and led the Federalist party in the government. The Battle of San Juan River in late March was a major defeat for the Spanish. The defeat forced many Spanish troops to flee to either Cuba or further south to New Granada, where they were harried by rebels who had recently risen up following news of the successful rebellions of the UPA and Louisiana. Spanish forces in South America were eventually able to regroup around Quito and prepare for a possible campaign to the north or at the very least to prevent the loss of any more colonies.

Portugal and Brazil were not exempt from the revolutionary wave sweeping the globe. Portugal itself had been shaken by the Parisian Rising. And as the tide of change had swept through Germany, Austria and North America political agitators in Lisbon began to grow in strength and in conviction. In 1797 these liberals had been able to oversee the creation of a Parliament in Lisbon, and a limiting of the monarch's power, a move towards, but still far from, the British model. The Parliament continued to gain influence at the expense of Queen Maria I, whose mental health had been suffering greatly. In early 1798 a rebellion broke out in Salvador, Brazil. The rebels were unable to take the city entirely but instead fell into a low level insurgency. Many other colonials however sympathized with them and as the wave of independence swept across the Americas many thought that Brazil should join them. Determined to maintain control over their colony the Portuguese government acted quickly. The royal heir, the young Prince John took a small force to quell the rebels. While in Brazil he became aware of the public sentiment for change. John was determined to keep the colony under Portuguese influence at any costs. He looked at the British Dominion system to the north but decided it would not work in this case, not least because of the recent actions by the Confederacy. Instead he, as Prince Regent, decided to elevate Brazil in importance, to be an equal to Portugal itself. He took the title Prince of Brazil and oversaw the development of a Brazilian Parliament in Rio de Janeiro in August 1798, one that would oversee the colony while still being subservient to Lisbon. He would remain in Rio as Prince of Brazil was to be the official title, and role, of the heir apparent, while his mother was given the new title Queen of Portugal, Brazil and the Algraves.

Maria I of Portugal, Brazil and the Algraves:

The events in Portugal, France and the Americas were too have a huge impact on Spain, and of all countries it may have arguably suffered the most from the era, at least in the short term. When the Parisian Rising broke out back in 1790, Spain had been stirred. When France broke out in civil war and Europe erupted, Spain was shaken. When its colonies revolted, its forces defeated and its Portuguese neighbor reformed, Spain was pushed to the brink. All it needed was a spark, and that came in May 1798. The Count of Floridablanca was the Spanish King Charles IV's prime minister, and was a reform minded man. He had tried to push through reforms in the nation and the government but had been blocked by conservatives and the king. In late 1797 he was dismissed from service after he made a remark that seemed, to the king at least, to praise the Louisianan and Américan risings as positives and implying that Spain should follow suit. Doubtless the Count only meant as far as increased reform, a la Portugal, but the king took it as a call for a republic. He was replaced by Manuel de Godoy, allegedly the Queen's lover, whose more reactionary views were favored by the king. When word of the defeat at San Juan River and the Portuguese reforms became public knowledge a large protest broke out in Madrid on May 5th 1798 demanding similar reforms in Spain. The king refused and ordered the crowd dispersed. The garrison was unmotivated and inexperienced, the best troops being in America or fighting the British elsewhere, and in the confusion some fired on the crowd. The result was chaos, as some protesters charged the garrison while some soldiers defected to the other side. The rebels, flush with the notions of liberty being heard across the western hemisphere, soon seized control over much of the city. The king and his minsters were forced to flee to Valencia. The rebels were soon joined by the liberal elite and were soon dominated by Floridablanca and a local priest Father Santiago. The nation soon descended into civil war. The king could have restored order, albeit after much struggle, had he not made the mistake of requesting French support. The moment the first French troops entered Spain in September of 1798 King Charles IV lost support and came to be seen as a French puppet. Britain and Portugal backed the rebels and soon a British force was dispatched to Portugal to prepare for an intervention, though they were keen to play a low key role to avoid the mistake Charles had made. Spain would soon bleed.

King Charles IV of Spain:

The outbreak of the Spanish Civil War would have a significant impact on the fighting in central Europe. The shift in French focus here deprived them the ability to finish off the Coalition which had appeared to be faltering. As Britain and France both became absorbed in the peninsula the fighting in Germany and Italy began to slow. This was a huge relief to both Austria and Prussia which were both eager for peace. The Prussians had been driven back and they and their north German allies were fighting a desperate struggle against the armies of the Counter-Reform alliance. Austria-Hungary was still recovering from internal issues while being pushed back in Bavaria and Italy; not to mention the Balkan crisis. Meanwhile Poland, finished with its civil war, was preparing to strike at both Coalition members. Vienna and Berlin both decided to approach King Louis for peace. The French were happy to oblige. They had managed to gain the upper hand in the east and were determined to orchestrate a peace so they could focus on the Spanish problem. Fighting continued into mid 1799 before the two sides managed to come to a negotiated peace in Rome. The Treaty of Rome (August 1799) ended the war in Germany and Italy bringing an end to the revolutionary conflict there. Representatives from Austria-Hungary, Prussia, Sardinia, Bavaria-Saxony, Poland, Britain and France (the two still at war elsewhere) hammered out the treaty. The Coalition was desperate for peace and were eager to maintain what honour they could, accepting the war was lost. Firstly the union of Bavaria and Saxony was recognized by all parties, as was the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire. The former German states were too be reorganized into a smaller amount of larger more manageable states as well as the secularization of the ecclesiastical states. In the northwest the reformist German states were united into the League of the Rhine. This was a Prussian insistence, backed by Britain and the states themselves fearful of being gobbled up by the great powers. The League was an almost miniature HRE. Each state was technically independent but they were all joined by a series of defense alliances. The rulers of these states would nominate one of their own to serve as Grand Marshall of the League to serve as its head for the duration of their lifetime. The first Grand Marshall was to be Maximilian Francis the former Archbishop-Elector and now King of Cologne. A council of the various rulers and their ministers was to be held every year in the League “capital”, Dortmund. The king of Prussia was also given the title of “Protector of the League”. Prussia was also awarded some of Saxony's territories. In Italy Sardinia was ceded Genoa and Parma as the North Italian Confederation was abolished following its failure to stop the Sardinians. Austria-Hungary was ceded Venetia and Salzburg to balance the Saxon-Bavarian union and the Sardinian growth. The former Austrian Netherlands were ceded to France despite British objections. But with no British troops left in Germany and their war with France still on going Great Britain was effectively only an observer at the conference. Westminster would try and seek to balance France's gains by seizing French territory overseas. Austria now turned its attentions to the Balkans while France and Britain continued to battle for global supremacy.

(Courtesy of the very talented
Kuld von Reyn)

The Age of Revolutions
[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]Part VI: Settling Accounts[/FONT]

[FONT=Times New Roman, serif] India. The subcontinent was not immune to the strife of the Age of Revolutions. Long divided between Britain (concentrated in Bengal and Bombay) and France (in the southeast), India would once more be a battleground between the two superpowers. The Maratha Confederacy was the largest indigenous states in the subcontinent at the turn of the century. It was however a weak nation. The French had been trying to undermine the state through their allies in Hyderabad. The British had, to counter, been trying to prop up the nation, with mixed success. In 1798 however the French managed to convince the Pawars of Udgir to break free from the Confederacy. The Marathas dispatched forces to crush the rebellion, but they were surprised when they encountered not only rebels, but soldiers from Hyderabad and even French troops. The Marathas were of course routed. When news of the defeat became known a palace coup was launched against [/FONT]Narayanrao Peshwa by generals intent on freeing the Confederacy from the Europeans and bringing an end to the decline. Well it backfired tremendously, and the Confederacy soon collapsed as various states soon broke away. The British in India were shocked at the collapse of their ally. Some argued in favour of doing whatever possible to save the Confederacy. The British Governor General of Bengal (the British top dog in India) Charles Cornwallis, opted for a different strategy. In his mind the Marathas were doomed. Instead Britain should support the best placed rebels and set them up as client states. Consequently Britain started aiding some of the fledgling states while France busied itself in the south. By 1800 the former Maratha Confederacy was now divided into five key players. French backed Udgir had gained a large area of control in the south, Baroda and Nagpur had both managed to carve out large areas of control and were backed by the British, in the north the Mughals had been overthrown by an ambitious general and a new state was rising around Delhi and in the east Orissa had increased its power.

Governor General of Bengal Charles Cornwallis:


Britain and France were at war in Europe and the Americas so India did not receive much in the way of support from either nation, so the war was to be fought mainly with proxies. Mysore took this opportunity to strike at France and invaded Hyderabad in May 1800 triggering the Second Franco-Mysore War. Meanwhile from 1800 to 1802 Cornwalls directed British support for Baroda and Nagpur which soon had large areas of land under their control. The new Kingdom of Delhi had unified the north of the country and was now battling against Sikhs and Afghans, and was for all intents and purposes no longer involved in the politics of the south. Orissa had signed an alliance with the British in 1801 and had supported their war against France. The French were losing out. No support was coming from Europe with France having far too many concerns, and with the British and their Portuguese allies controlling the seas. With the wars wrapping up in Europe and the Americas the British and French eventually made peace in India in 1805. Mysore was to gain lands in the south. The former Maratha Confederacy was divided up between the Kingdoms of Orissa, Baroda and Nagpur; the latter having freed itself of British influence. The rule of Delhi was recognised in the north west. In five years the entire geopolitical balance in India had shifted. Two new Indian states ruled in the north (Delhi and Nagpur) free of European influence and modernising their armed forces under powerful and ambitious kings. Mysore, Orissa and Baroda each had carved out spheres of influence and were favourable to Britain, but still determined to remain independent. While in the south east France's bid for more land was checked but their influence over Hyderabad was cemented while they began trying to drive the Indian states away from Britain.

Spain was at war with itself. The loyalists to King Charles IV were regrouping in the east of the country in Valencia and Barcelona. French troops, veterans from the German War, crossed the Pyrenees in support of the king. The rebels meanwhile had seized the capital Madrid and gained control of much of the West. An Anglo-Portugese army under the command of General John Moore. Moore's men began training the Spanish rebels as weapons were shipped in from Britain. 1799 was a quiet year in Spain however. Both sides were rallying forces and negotiations took place between loyalists and rebels throughout the year in Seville. These were mostly a sham though as the king refused to bend to any of the rebel wishes. The only major action of 1799 was a naval engagement where a British fleet that had been assisting the rebels was attacked by a Franco-Loyalist Spanish fleet near Cadiz off Cape Trafalgar. British Admiral Collingwood's force managed to inflict a decisive defeat on the Franco-Spanish fleet ensuring British naval superiority around the Iberian peninsula. In 1800 the action flared up again however with a loyalist assault on the city of Burgos. The rebels manage to hold the city against their Spanish kin but were unable to hold back a French force when it arrived and the city fell. A British attack on Murcia later that year was a success. The rest of the year saw fighting go back and forth throughout the east of the country. During this time the rebels had struggled to find a common cause. Republicans, conservatives and radicals all debated and argued over what their rebellion should be about. If it wasn't for the support of their allies and the insistence of Westminster on a solution it is likely the rebel cause would have splintered and collapsed. In June 1801 however word came to Madrid of a massacre by French troops in a town near Bilbao; the massacre was rumoured (falsely) to have been on the orders of King Charles. The result was a backlash against the monarchist faction and a radical-republican alliance won out. On July 4th 1801 the rebels in Madrid proclaimed the Spanish Republic. Floridablanca was the first choice to lead the republic but was in declining health and refused the position. Instead the post was offered to one of the rebels' leading generals and statesmen Miguel Ricardo de Álava, who was soon sworn is as President. The declaration of the Republic worried London and Lisbon, who were suddenly less sure of backing a radical republic. Nonetheless they stayed, fearing a French puppet Spain more than a republican government. The Republic went on a renewed offensive in 1802 and that year they made great ground pushing the loyalists and French back. For a moment it seemed as if total victory for the republic was in their grasp, indeed so high was the fear of the loyalists that a group smuggled out Prince Ferdinand for fear of capture by the rebels when they approached Valencia. Managing to slip by the British blockade Prince Ferdinand and his retinue fled to South America. By the beginning of 1803 however the rebels had lost steam. The British were becoming increasingly weary of war and the Portuguese were growing increasingly alarmed over the radical government in Madrid. Fortunately for the rebels the French too were tired of war, having by now been fighting non-stop since 1790, and on three continents. The war once more turned into a stalemate as both sides were too exhausted to continue. When Britain and France made peace in 1805 the Spanish situation was finally resolved in the Treaty of Paris. Despite all efforts at reconciliation in the end the warring powers were left with no choice but to accept the division of Spain. The Republic was recognised in Madrid while a rump Kingdom was organised in the east ruled from Barcelona under Charles IV.

de Álava of the Spanish Republic

War had still been raging simultaneously in the Americas. The UPA and the United Provinces of New Granada had both, by 1801, established independence. In Peru and further south however the Spanish still held sway. A Granadan attempt to strike south was repulsed and the new nation retreated to concentrate on internal affairs and never threatened to strike south again. The Spanish now could have possibly launched a campaign to retake their lost colony to the north had not word of the civil war back in Spain arrived. The Spanish in Peru were soon in chaos. Many wished to side with the rebels, while others, mainly in the officer class, were loyal to the king. Mutinies broke out in the army. In late 1801 however word came of the declaration of the Republic. The army en masse declared support for the Republic, aided by the arrival of a Republican delegation from Spain, and the monarchists were forced to flee further south. The new republican forces, supported by Britain, had by late 1802, had gained control of all the lands of the former Viceroyalty of Peru. With Britain now focused on events in North America the Republicans here were left on their own. They decided to strike south and drive the monarchists out of the Americas, expecting limited and confused resistance. In this they were deeply mistaken. The monarchists had rallied around the young exile Prince Ferdinand and beat back the invasion. The two sides skirmished throughout the next few years but each was too preoccupied with domestic affairs and lacked the strength to go on the offensive. When the Treaty of Paris was signed Peru was made an autonomous province of the Republic while the south was given back to King Charles IV. This encountered a slight snag however when Prince Ferdinand, who had long since grown distant (in character as well as geography) from his father refused to submit to his father whose failures at home were viewed as weak. Indeed when it became known in Buenos Aires that Charles had given up half of Spain, more than half, the elites were astonished and angered by his apparent weakness. A few ambitious men capitalised on Ferdinand's own dreams and convinced him to declare himself King. Most of the men around him rallied to his cause, and those who didn't either fled or kept their reservations quiet. Ferdinand was soon proclaimed King of Spain and the Rio de la Plata. Neither Ferdinand or his father had the will or capability to strike at one another and so the Kingdom of Rio de la Plata achieved independence without a shot being fired. At the end of 1805 there were three Spains in the world.

In North America too the fighting continued. Louisiana had by now achieved full independence. To its north a collection of native tribes had driven the French out and were soon formed into a British protectorate. French Canada meanwhile was still fighting. New England forces, with British maritime assistance, had been gaining the upper hand. The appearance of the CAS however forced them to redeploy men to their southern border. The Confederates meanwhile were convinced it was only a matter of time until the British invaded and until they made peace with France and turned on them. So, sensing that Britain was currently too distracted to act decisively, the Confederates invaded New England. “Strike hard, strike fast, and strike now, and England will have to accept us”, words written by President Madison on the day the attack was ordered. A Confederate army invaded New England and drove into Pennsylvania. They were repulsed however by the more numerous and experienced New Englanders The fighting freed up the French in the north who began a counter-attack to drive the British and their allies out and back into New England. The Dominion found itself at war on two fronts. In 1803 there was a decisive battle near the town of Gettysburg in southern Pennsylvania, a defeat for the Confederacy. With France unable to mount a significant threat in North America due to commitments abroad the government in Boston was able to devote its full resources to the south. In mid 1804 they managed to capture Maryland but were defeated in a series of battles in northern Virginia. Britain and New England, both tired of war, were eager for peace. They offered Charleston peace with Maryland being ceded to the Dominion. President Madison was unwilling to give up the land but with the forces arrayed against him and with Louisiana encouraging slave risings in the south and west, he felt he had no choice. Peace and the CAS' independence were both part of the Treaty of Paris.

A side effect of the declaration of the Spanish Republic was the Neapolitan rising. The Kingdom of the Two Sicilies had been ruled by Charles IV's brother Ferdinand. When hearing of the republican declaration in Madrid Ferdinand acted to prevent such a fate happening in his own realm. Suspected radicals were arrested and troops were called up. This worked well in Sicily itself but on the mainland the people rose in revolt when a few Sicilian soldiers got a bit carried away. Elites in Naples took power and declared a republic, inspired by the happenings in Spain. Ferdinand fled to Palermo where he asked for support from France and his brother. Both however were far too busy. Soldiers on the mainland mutinied and went over to the Republic. In 1805 the Neapolitan Republic was recognised in Paris when Britain threatened to strike at Palermo if Ferdinand didn't accept the new state. French troops soon arrived in Sicily and in the Papal States soon after the treaty was signed to prevent any threat to these governments from Naples.

The Ottoman Sultan Mustafa meanwhile was not having a happy time. The war in the Balkans was increasingly going against his nation as Serbia, Greece, and the Danubian principalities were in revolt. The Russians were driving south in a campaign to assist the risings. The Russians seemed unstoppable. Two things happened in 1799 that gave the Sultan hope. First the Austrians made peace with France and begin to move troops to their eastern border. Now Vienna was hardly a friend of the Ottomans, but they had a similar fear of a Russian dominated Balkans. Secondly the Ottomans achieved a surprise victory at Sofia routing the Russians who had driven too far too fast. Fighting continued into 1801 and although the rebels had made significant gains it no longer looked like the Ottoman state would collapse. Mustafa however was aware that any chance of a reconquest was fanciful. When in early 1802 the Austrian emperor Joseph II offered to mediate a peace (fearing a Russian triumph) the Sultan accepted. The Treaty of Budapest in November of 1802 saw the recognition of the new independent Kingdoms of Greece and Serbia as well as the new United Kingdom of the Danube ruled by King Alexandru Callimachi. The Ottomans had lost the war, but, free of these troublesome provinces and now with a more ambitious Sultan the Empire set about rebuilding itself. Tsar Paul had won control of the Crimea in the treaty along with a trio of new allies in the south. This new Russia had its first victory, and there were many more to come.

The Treaty of Paris ended the most intense period of the Age of Revolutions. Fighting still continued to rage in the Americas though between Louisiana and the CAS. The two constantly skirmished along their border as New Orleans continually tried to ferment slave uprisings. In the UPA and New Granada small bands of Spanish loyalists continued to wage a guerrilla war for many years. Similar small scale skirmishes also plagued La Plata and the Spanish Republican controlled Peru. The final battle of the Age of Revolutions is considered to be the Battle of San Rafael in 1820, a small battle involving less than 200 men in which the UPA eliminated the last tiny holdout of royalist Spain in California.


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The Post Revolutionary Age: North America And Europe 1800-1830

Exploration and Conquest

Out of all the major colonial powers only the Dutch managed to stay neutral from the great conflicts of the turn of the century. This roughly twenty year period has been called by some, mainly Dutch writers, as the second Golden Age of the Netherlands. As Britain and France dueled across the globe, Dutch explorers and colonists gradually expanded the nation's overseas empire and charting new lands. While the British were pre-occupied elsewhere a Dutch expedition had set off from Jakarta and headed southeast to make good Dutch claims on Nieuw Zeeland . A successful colony was established at New Rotterdam in 1797. During this time the Dutch too consolidated their control over Sumatra, Ceylon and various other colonies. The Anglo-French wars over India had, not only distracted them from actions elsewhere, but had worried the Dutch who feared that such conflict would disrupt their lines of communication from the base in South Africa to Asia. In the early 1800s therefore the Dutch began claiming and settling the island of Madagascar (with settlers drawn from those in South Africa and families wishing to escape from the troubles in Europe), their colony there was named. From 1802-1805 the Dutch fought the Merinan War, the only major Dutch conflict of the period. The local African kingdom put up a brave struggle but was eventually subdued and placed under Dutch influence, de jure independent but de facto run by the Netherlands. In this period too the Dutch East India Company which had been experiencing a relative decline was abolished. Instead the various colonies in the east were divided into African, Indian and East Indian regions each with a 'capital' of sorts (Cape Town, Colombo and Jakarta) and was ruled by a Viceroy appointed from the Netherlands; the move was designed to increase government control over the colonies and increase direct management, a plan influenced by British actions in Bengal and North America. The only incident of real concern for the Dutch was a dispute with Britain in 1805 over Australia and Nieuw Zeeland, both of which were claimed by Britain and the Netherlands. In the end, with neither side wanting war, it was agreed that Australia would be recognised as Britain's while the Dutch maintained their influence over Nieuw Zeeland.By the year 1810 the Dutch Empire in the Indian Ocean was a strong and rich collection of colonies, trading posts and military outposts.

Elsewhere in the world Britain and France had, once the war ended, begun picking up a few pieces of their own. Spanish Hispaniola and Pueto Rico had been seized by Britain during the war with Spain. Puerto Rico was returned to the Spanish Republic in 1806 by Britain, though they kept the rest. Britain too had cemented its claim on Australia while establishing new bases in Africa and the South Atlantic. It also waged a campaign of conquest along the African east coast, taking a few bases, to secure their own passage to India. France had not been wonderfully successful outside of Europe during the Age of Revolutions. In the immediate post-war period it was occupied with defeating a rebellion in its colony in Saint-Domingue and reasserting its influence in southeastern India. It caught a lucky break in 1807 however. The Treaty of Paris had placed all former Spanish colonial territory under Republican control, minus of course the lands controlled by the UPA, New Granada and the Kingdom of La Plata. The Republic tried hard to reassert itself in these lands and had varying degrees of success; in the Philippines though they encountered a serious problem. The Spanish officials in Manilla were loyal to the King in Barcelona and refused to submit to Republican authority. They rebelled and by 1808 were in control of most of the islands. The Spanish (Republic and Kingdom) lacked the ability, or indeed the will in some cases, to reconquer the islands. In Britain there was fierce debate on what to do, do they take the islands for their own, or give them to the republic, or leave them be etc. By the time they came to a conclusion however, it was too late. The French, who had fortunately sent a fleet to India recently to reinforce and replace the garrison, had no such dilemma. In 1809 the French expedition sailed to Manilla and overwhelmed and seized the colony for themselves. The French replaced the Spanish as colonial governors and the natives went on about their business. The Republic and Britain protested the move, but did nothing; so recently embroiled in war. The Spanish Kingdom expected the French to turn the islands over to them. The French had no intention of doing so however and the result was a cooling of relations between Paris and Barcelona. The conflict however was a great success for France and reignited French colonial ambitions, though the expense and effort of holding the Philippines was to prove greater than expected for France.

The World in 1810: Following the End of the Age of Revolutions

A New Germany

The old balance of power in Germany had been broken by the Treaty of Rome (1799) and a new political status quo had settled in central Europe. The period of the Triumvirate (c.1770-1799) was now at an end. Prussia remained a strong power in northern Germany though it had not majorly expanded following the Revolutionary Wars and the damage done by the reign of the previous king Frederick William to the military being readily apparent. The nation however had managed to reassert itself somewhat. Under the determined King Wilhelm the army had been restored to its previous prestige and had held its own with pride during the fighting against Saxons, Bavarians and the French. Saxony-Bavaria was now a unified country and dominated a large stretch of German lands in the east. It did however have a long and volatile border with Austria to its east and Prussia sitting to its north. Austria-Hungary had reforged itself into a united empire and sought to balance itself between west and east Europe. It still wielded great influence within Germany, despite the end of the Holy Roman Empire, through its close ties with Berlin and Dortmund. The League of the Rhine was the newest political force on the scene, and represented a new power block. Friendly with Vienna and a close ally of the Prussians, the League was the banner carrier for the German reformists. Hanover was the fifth major player now in Germany. Ruled by the aging and increasingly deluded King George (formerly George III of Britain) the nation was at odds with its neighbours and was increasingly being drawn into the French sphere while courting the Poles.

Prussia was on the winning side of the Revolutionary Wars. It had however gained little for its efforts. It had received a few former Saxon lands in the west, though they were now members of the League of the Rhine. The administrative grey area between Berlin and Dortmund over who ruled these lands would be a thorn in the otherwise close relations these two countries shared until the matter was resolved following the Pommeranian War. The Prussian nation went through a military renaissance under Wilhelm in the decades following the Treaty of Rome. The cultural period that went hand in hand with neglect for the army that prevailed under Frederick William was reviled by the Prussian elite. The traditionalists came once more to the forefront in this new period. The army was restored to its previous position at the heart of the Prussian nation. Buoyed by military success in the war the young King Wilhelm yearned for another conflict, one that would be a decisive Prussian triumph. In the late 1810s Prussia tried to push Poland towards war by demanding the portion of land separating Brandenburg from East Prussia. Poland obviously refused, as intended. King Wilhelm did not get his war though, when it became clear that Austria would not support them (as Vienna was still focused on the post-war situation in the Balkans) and France announced it would support its Bourbon ally, the Prussians backed down. In 1826 however with many of the great powers focused elsewhere, Berlin got its war. A small skirmish with Swedish troops in the north was exploited by the Prussian government as an excuse to seize Pomerania. The Prussian army soon moved into the Swedish territory. A battle in August of 1826 near Stettin was won decisively by the Prussians. Further advance was delayed though by Swedish maritime control, which landed a fresh Swedish army in the north. Swedish diplomacy soon brought Denmark and nearby Mecklenburg (both concerned about Prussian expansionism) into the war on their side. A few months later though the Prussians managed to bring a Swedish-Mecklenburg army to battle near Anklam, which again was a crushing victory for the Prussians. Anklam was exploited by Berlin and a deal was signed with Dortmund for the military support of the League. In exchange the disputed Prussian territory in the Rhineland was ceded to the League (they were to become special zones ruled directly by the Grand Marshal).

League forces, acting for the first time as a united military unit, invaded Danish Oldenburg. The League forces were initially repulsed by the more organized Danish forces. However two decades of industrialization in the League soon played its part. From 1808 to 1825 railroad construction had spread rapidly across the Rhineland. British industrialists provided the early expertise (for which they made great profit) but soon the Rhinelanders themselves took over the majority of the project. The complex waterways and natural resource rich lands of the area proved perfect breeding grounds for this type of industrialism. Though it began in Britain the Industrial Revolution was well underway in the League by the early 1820s. The unique political structure of the League, divided yet unified, provided ample competition for growth while providing enough political security for private enterprise. The railroads allowed Rhinelander forces to be gathered quickly from throughout the League which in 1828 launched a new offensive into Oldenburg which overwhelmed the Danish defenders. Other domestic events in the League were quiet and served more as a precursor to future events than anything dynamic in their own right. Some notable events were the 1817 death of Maximilian Francis of Cologne. Without a legal heir there was dispute over who should succeed him as King. The issue was avoided however when in Cologne, always one of the more reformist states, the people declared a republic following the Spanish style. Hans Maier, an influential and wealthy lawyer (as well as a veteran of the Revolutionary Wars) was elected the nation's first Chancellor. He did not inherit the title of Grand Marshall however which the League electors voted to give to King Philipp of Westphalia, who like many of the other League monarchs had been made king (drawn from either the clergy or nobility, in this case the latter), following the Treaty of Rome. The existence of a republic within the League was feared to become a major divisive issue, but turned out not to be so, perhaps the election of a monarch to Grand Marshall helped balance this issue. Cologne, however, would prove to be far from the last of the League states to abandon the monarchist system.


The Prussians had followed up their victory at Anklam by invading Mecklenburg. Resistance to the Prussian advance gradually collapsed throughout 1828. Wismar fell in July and signaled the effective end of resistance. Denmark was committed to fighting on but with Mecklenburg overrun and the government in Stockholm now determined to make peace due to reports of Russian troops massing along the Finnish border in the east, peace was signed in Vienna in August of 1828. Pomerania and Mecklenburg were ceded to Prussia while Oldenburg became the latest member of the League of the Rhine, choosing its own king drawn for the local nobility (though Oldenburg would always remain one of the more conservative of the League states). The victory restored Prussian pride and was the League's first foray into the international stage. So successful was it that the Duchy of Trier, wary of France, applied to enter the League in early 1829, and was accepted. Other German states however were less impressed and more concerned about the League-Prussian alliance. Hanover (now ruled by George's son William, one of the few of his children to flee with him to Hanover) signed an alliance with Saxony-Bavaria while the remaining southern German nations too began to look to foreign alliances and collective defense.

The years following the Revolutionary Wars were a time of great change in Austria. The nation, now known as Austria-Hungary, experienced rapid constitutional change. Joseph II, known in Austria to this day as “Joseph the Great Reformer” died in 1806. He was succeeded by his son, Francis, crowned Francis I Emperor of Austria and Hungary, King of Bohemia and Croatia. Francis, like his father, was a reformist, though perhaps more pragmatic and less ideological than his father. The early years of Francis' reign were focused on the Balkans. The Ottoman retreat from this area was celebrated in Vienna and Budapest, the defeat of their ancient enemy was always good news. However the mood was soon dampened when it became evident that Russia had now replaced the Turk as the dominant power in this region. The new nations of Serbia, Greece and the UKD all were allies of the Tsar and gave him considerable influence in the Balkans. Consequently Francis, quietly, began improving relations with the Ottomans. Neither liked the other but both feared the bear more. Though no official alliance was signed Austro-Turkish relations improved strongly in this period and both were determined to halt the Russian advance south. Francis too in this period improved upon the already established system of mandatory education. Encouraging its growth throughout the Empire, as well as making German as well as Magyar compulsory for all students. Higher education too was expanded and improved, with the University of Vienna becoming arguably the greatest in continental Europe; though women still were barred, or discouraged, from most high learning. A small rising took place in Illyria in 1827 but it was soundly defeated. Francis too sought to court Poland, seen as a useful ally against Russia. This was one of the major failings of Austrian diplomacy in this period. Though cautious of Russia, Poland too feared Austria's ally Prussia, while still harbouring territorial designs on Silesia, which would soon lead to war between the two nations. Consequently King Louis II preferred to maintain his alliance with his Bourbon cousin in France.

Saxony-Bavaria was a new force on the world stage following the Treaty of Rome. It was however an artificial creation, joined solely by dynastic union. The aging Frederick-Augusts I was no reformer. His rule saw the forcing together of these two nations. The armies were integrated and rule was increasingly centralised in Munich. Though Dresden was the Saxon capital, it was seen as too vulnerable to attack, plus Munich had a grander history and prestige to it, or so the King saw it. Saxony-Bavaria had intended to intervene in the Pommeranian War against Prussia in the 1820s but eventually stayed out for three principal reasons: lack of forthcoming French support, the fear of Austrian intervention and the string of Prussian victories. Instead the Saxobavarians invaded neighboring Gotha and conquered the nation in only a few weeks. Frederick-Augusts I died in 1826 and was succeeded by his son, Maximilian. In all the period of 1800-1830 was a quiet time for this new nation. It saw the welding together of these two nations and the creation of a Saxobavarian identity. The nation did not, like the League, industrialise and instead was a centre of reaction-ism, arguably the centre of it in Europe. The alliance with France was paramount in Munich's foreign policy. This however caused discontent amongst other south German states. The union of Swabia and Ansbach in 1828 (creating the United Kingdom of Swabia) as well as the alliance signed between Hessia and Wurzburg (1829) can both be attributed to Saxobavarian activies in this period. Talks between the remaining three German nations (Baden, Wurttemberg and the Palatinate) had amounted to nothing by 1830.


Blood and Earth
North America: (1800-1820)

The Louisianan Republic was the child of the Age of Revolution. In fact its Declaration of Independence triggered the outbreak of revolts and revolutions that broke out across the Americas and Europe. The revolutionary tradition inspired by this birth in fire would stick with Louisiana and its people. Louisiana in the early 1800s was a nation getting to its feet. It had to organise and establish a government, encourage immigration from abroad and set about unifying its large but relatively sparsely populated lands. The Republic's first national elections had finally taken place in 1798 (two years later than planned). The election had been a success, despite the voting/counting process taking around 3 months to complete; primarily due to the sheer size of the nation as well as the people's lack of experience with a representative government and system. This first government was primarily focused on the war effort against France as well as dealing with the issue of forming a nation. The First Consul during this time was Philippe Bardet a charismatic and determined leader who is still regarded as a hero and indeed earned the monicker the “Father of the Republic”. Bardet's term as First Consul ended in 1803 (despite only supposed to serve 5 years his term was considered to have started only in 1798). He was succeeded by French emigree Adrien Duport who too had been an influential figure in the early years. Duport's Consulship was devoted to two main goals: improving and establishing the nation's judicial system and foreign negotiation (primarily with trying to prevent war with the CAS and maintaining strong ties with London and New York). The elections for the National Assembly took place in 1804 (the Consul had a separate 5 year term compared to the Assembly's six-year, at this time). This election signaled the rise of the first Louisianan political parties, although they were more like camps than organized political machines at this point. On one side were the Radicals (this group was dominated by French exiles who tended to have more extreme, and militaristic, views) and the Modérés (Moderates) who were more focused on internal improvements and an isolationist foreign policy. Consul Duport distanced himself from the parties and set about portraying himself as the leader of all Louisianans. This tradition of the aloofness of the First Consul and distance from party politics was to become as strong as law in the next few years. The Assembly of 1804-1810 was controlled by the Moderates.

Duport was succeeded as First Consul by Lucien Thomas. Thomas had been born in Louisiana, but before the Revolution. Thomas had been mayor of St. Louis which he had helped transform into the nation's second largest city, indeed it was one of the only major cities in the country north of the Cœur (heart) River (OTL Arkansas River). Consequently First Consul Thomas had a strong following in the north of the nation that had helped win him the election. Thomas consularship and that of the 1810-1816 Assembly, still run by the Moderates but with a notably reduced majority, was on institutional reform. The new structure of the nation was established in the Republic Act of 1812. There were now 41 départements in the Republic, each would elected an Assembly representative at the next election, up from 36. The Assembly elections would also now be split with the six year terms becoming overlapping. Half of the current members would be up for re-election in 1816 while the rest would serve on until 1819, thereby allowing more frequent elections in government and breaking political monopolies on power. In early 1815 however an incident occurred that would have great ramifications for Louisiana. Over the past few years a small movement had grown in the eastern part of the nation. These “Friends of Liberty” were a band of settlers, veterans and foragers who had made it their goal to help Confederate slaves escape to Louisiana and freedom. Many in New Orleans had known about this movement but had thought little of it. Until that is in February of 1815 when the 'Friends' had pulled off, or thought they had, a major operation, assisting over three dozen slaves escape over the border. However, they were pursued by the slaves' owner and a band of Confederate cavalry. The pursuit took them over the border where they encountered a Louisianan military patrol and the 'Friends' a few miles outside the town of Calais. The slave owner demanded the return of his slaves. None of the Louisianan soldiers however spoke English so it was up to one of the Friends to translate. What the translator reported however is believed to be a far less diplomatic statement than what was actually originally stated. The outraged officer in turn demanded that the Confederates withdraw from sovereign Louisianan territory. In the confusion one of the slave children got away from his mother and tried to run for a nearby forest. He was immediately shot by the slave owner. As one might expect things immediately escalated. When the smoke cleared the Confederates were in retreat but five slaves, three 'Friends', a half dozen Louisianan soldiers as well as nearly twenty Confederates (including the slave owner) lay dead.

It turned out that the dead slave owner had been a wealthy and well-respected man named James Page. Who, to make things worse, turned out to be a close friend of Confederate President James Monroe. The Confederate government was organised along lines maximising the individual rights and powers of the nation's five 'states': Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida (which was officially made a state in 1811). Each state had its own government as well as their being a national Senate in Charleston. The President was elected to a renewable four year term. President Monroe upon finding out about his dear friend's death sent an ultimatum to New Orleans. He demanded those responsible be turned over to the CAS, a hefty financial payment as way of an apology and a guarantee that Louisiana would cease all aid to slaves in the Confederacy. New First Consul Henry Lambert (a wealthy New Orleans businessman who made his fortune in overseas trade) was more inclined that most to accept, or at last negotiate on these terms. However the Radicals in the Assembly, along with a few more offended Moderates managed to gather a majority vote in the Assembly (25-16) to refuse the demands. In addition the Assembly (which of course had more power than the Consul) sent its own reply demanding that Monroe apologise for the transgression of the Confederate troops into Louisianan territory and the murder of its soldiers and citizens. Press in both nations got wind of the dispute and public anger was stoked to boiling point. On May 9th 1815 President Monroe sent a final note demanding the above terms or he would ask the Confederate Senate to approve a declaration of war. On May 30th the Louisianan National Assembly declared war on the Confederacy of American States.

The Louisianans were able to act first in the war. Their revolutionary spirit allowed a quick mobilization. An army of 20,000 Louisianan troops invaded the Confederate state of Georgia. The Confederate forces in this area were initially pushed back. The Battle of Columbus, in central Georgia, on September 9th was a victory for the Louisianans who now, under the talented General Lucien, made for Atlanta. Unfortunately a new Confederate army, the Army of Northern Virginia, arrived before the Louisianans reached the Georgian capital. The subsequent Battle of Atlanta (October 20th-22nd) saw the Louisianans defeated and scattered. The Confederates launched a counter-offensive and by 1816 had retaken almost all of their lost lands. It was now though that the planned advance to the Mississippi had to be delayed. The Louisianans in their advance/retreat had freed thousands of slaves, and armed them. Louisiana had been importing thousands of British arms and munitions (London had no intention of getting involved in this war but still wished to assist their ally in New Orleans), a large amount of which they had used to arms freedmen who now executed a bloody guerrilla war against the Confederates in the area. A new Louisianan host, around 28,000 men, was assembling to relaunch the offensive. General Luicen was expected to take command, however he was overlooked in favour of Jean Bourdillon, an Assembly representative who fancied himself a general. This political appointment, achieved by bribes, enraged elements of the military, Lucien himself was put in charge of the 2,000 strong force guarding the border with the UPA. Bourdillon's army moved east in early 1816. The Confederates withdrew and regrouped near Rome, Georgia; the guerrilla war had bled them dry but the insurgency was effectively crushed, those remaining had fled west. The Battle of Rome was a disaster for the Louisianans, the arrogant Bourdillon had been outmaneuvered by the Confederate General Andrew Jackson. The defeat was the end of Louisianan advances in the war. Critically the Battle of Rome ended any possibility of New England intervention. The New Englanders had been sympathetic to the Louisianan effort but the defeat at Rome caused the pro-war faction in the north to lose influence.

The rest of 1816 saw a gradual collapse of Louisianan resistance east of the Mississippi. Freed slaves (and un-freed) fled west in the wake of the vengeful Confederates, an exodus fled to the safety of Louisiana. Fittingly enough the last major confrontation of the war took place in November of 1816 near the town of Calais. The Battle of Calais saw Jackson finish the last opposing army on this side of the Mississippi. The Louisianans (led by another political appointment) were divided before the battle, and around a third of the army deserted rather than serve under another political buffoon. In February 1817 a peace treaty was signed in Havana ending the First Louisianan-Confederate War. In the terms of the treaty all Louisianan territory east of the Mississippi and south of the Ohio rifer was ceded to the Confederacy, New Orleans would outlaw the 'Friends of Liberty' and promise to no longer assist slave uprisings in the CAS and finally Louisiana would pay a hefty sum to Charleston. In addition the 'Friends' responsible for the Calais incident were turned over to the CAS where they were imprisoned. The outcome of this war and the Treaty of Havana were important in their own right, the success of the CAS, the shift in the power balance and the lack of New England support to Louisiana; however the most dramatic legacy of the war would be its role as trigger for arguably the greatest political rise in the history of the Americas.

The Dominion of New England in the first two decades of the 19th Century was a place of great change and innovation. Emerging from the Revolutionary Wars, not only victorious against the French and Confederates, but having gained the Ohio Valley and Maryland, left New England in a politically secure and powerful position. The Dominion parliament at New York gradually grew in confidence and authority throughout this period. Elections to the parliament were held every five years starting in 1776. By the1800s two main political parties had come to the forefront, the Federalists and the Whigs. The Whigs tended to be in favour of greater power to the constituent provinces, an isolationist foreign policy (with the exception of the continued relationship with Britain), and backed and were backed by the more agrarian and interior provinces, such as Pennsylvania and Ohio. The Federalists on the other hand argued for stronger central government, a more adventurous foreign agenda, support for the New Orleans regime, and were big proponents of a stronger navy to protect the Dominion's maritime commercial interests; consequently they had strong support in Massachusetts and other north-eastern provinces. Starting in the 1801 election the Federalists were the ruling party. Consequently the nature of the Dominion changed dramatically with two important pieces of legislation: the Constitutional Act (1805) and the Navy Act (1808). The Constitutional Act was a major piece of Federalist vision. The provincial parliaments lost power and the federal parliament was strengthened. Also this act moved the seat of the Dominion parliament to Boston. This was to appease the smaller states, who following the granting of provincial status to Ohio (1801) and Michigan (1804) feared they were being ignored in favour of the western larger states. Therefore moving the capital out of New York (the most populous province) to the smaller Massachusetts was seen as a way of alleviating their concerns. The Constitutional Act also created the post of First Minister. The Dominion had always been represented by the leader of the largest political party in parliament, but it was only in 1805 that an official position was created with specific powers. The Dominion's first First Minister was a Federalist New York representative Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton was a strong believer in a more ambitious New England aiming to make the Dominion the dominant power in North America. He too was committed to maintaining the relationship with Britain and had no desire to make New England a fully sovereign nation (a political belief that was gradually gaining ground in this period). Indeed Hamilton, who served as First Minister from 1805 to 1816, became a great friend and correspondent with two British Prime Ministers in his time in office (William Pitt the Younger and the Earl of Liverpool). Hamilton also entertained King George IV at his house in New York when the King made his historic visit to the Dominion in 1812. The Navy Act (1808) on the other hand made the creation, expansion and maintenance of a New England Navy the paramount concern of the period. The Dominion's first home built first rate ship of the line, HMDS (His Majesty's Dominion's Ship) Emergence, was launched in 1810 bearing 100 guns. By 1820 New England possessed by far the most powerful navy in the Americas, it even surpassed the Royal Navy as Westminster was happy to hand much of the responsibility in this area to Boston to concentrate elsewhere. It is also during this period that New England fought the Barbary War (1807-1810), which in itself motivated the passing of the Navy Act. Pirates from North Africa had been increasingly striking at the Dominion's shipping (vital to its economic rise) and eventually the Boston government had enough. A series of punitive expeditions was sent and resulted in the effective dismantling of the Barbary pirates. Britain sent a small force to assist and diplomatically backed the Dominion, but it was New England that did the lion's share. The success in the Barbary War was New England's first independent military campaign. This success saw a redefining of the relationship between Dominion and master as for the first time politicians in Westminster began to see New England as a credible military and political ally and partner rather than colony.

New England First Minister Alexander Hamilton:

Elsewhere in North America this period saw an increase in immigration from Europe and the construction of new towns and developing economies. French Canada continued to grow and became a wealthy offspring of France. The population continued to remain loyal to the King back in France, but by 1820 a majority of the populace was now determined that they should have more autonomy and decision making powers, they only had to look over the border to the south to see the thriving British Dominion and the independent states further south. By 1820 French Canada had a population of near 800,000 with Quebec being one of the continent's major cities. British lands further north and west however remained more scarcely populated. It still attracted settlers however and the lands of the Hudson Bay Company continued to push west into the American interior. Newcastle was founded in the west and would develop into a major transport and commercial hub in this region. Two decades into the new century though the population of the colony was still less than a quarter of a million. The Native Protectorate was a curious case in this time. No central government existed and was in fact a series of tribal lands grouped together for convenience sake. The tribes skirmished with each other more often than not, as well as with Louisianan settlers to the south. Eventually though the Protectorate began to come together and the Shawnee tribe began to emerge as the dominant political force in the Protectorate and would steer it through the tumultuous events of the 1820s and 30s.




Rise of the Eagle

Jérôme squinted his eyes in attempt to peer through the smoke. Battle's were, as far as Jérôme could tell, all smoke and fire and noise. In the distant he could see the shape of hills and men and cannon dotting the ridge. Flashes of fire occasional burst into lie along that ridge as Confederate artillery spewed death and destruction. Somewhere beyond those hills Jérôme knew lay Atlanta. Atlanta. That was always the goal, 'if we can just take Atlanta the war would be as good as won'. Jérôme scoffed, no bloody chance of that now.

Around him his own brigade of cannon blasted away at a Confederate infantry regiment down in the valley. Twenty-five artillery pieces under Jérôme's personal command. All British built, Jérôme mused, like most of the army's equipment, at some point this country needs to start making its own damn weapons. His brigade was the finest artillery brigade in the army, he truly believed that. Wouldn't do much good now true or not though he thought. The battle was clearly going poorly. The Confederates kept coming and the Louisianan centre looked about to break. In the distance he could see white-coated horseman charging into the army's left flank, through his looking glass Jérôme thought he recognised the cavalry's banner, Virginians it seemed.

The Louisianan left began to collapse. Jérôme ordered his artillery to begin pounding the Confederate centre to buy his countrymen time to retreat. He was aware that the rest of the cannon division had done the same. Commander Sout was not a bad man. Old, he had fought in the Revolution, but he knew what was right and tended to follow Jérôme's lead rather than the other way around as rank dictated. It was no use though the battle was over. The call to retreat came down the lines and Jérôme's brigade began to withdraw, bringing up the horses to mount the guns. He'd be damned if he let those Confederate bastards have his cannon.

It shouldn't have come to this he thought bitterly as his men began to join the withdrawal streaming south and west. The government should have sent more men, more guns, more supplies, more everything. Those fools in the capital did not know how to fight a war. His father did. His father had served in the Sardinian army years before; he'd even met the Sardinian king! He could still see his father fuming as he came down the stairs outside the Assembly building. He'd tried to argue that the government needed to raise more men for the campaign, but they hadn't listened. It's because he's an Italian. If he'd been French born they might have listened. His father had tried so hard to integrate himself in the elite, even changing his name, but to no avail. No Jérôme thought it shouldn't have come to this. Something needed to be done about those corrupt fools in New Orleans. Watching the army trudge away, the sounds of battle still booming behind as the rearguard fought to give time to the retreat, Jérôme felt anger flood his face. Something needed to be done indeed. But what could he do, a mere artillery captain? Well no matter his station Jérôme Bonaparte would do whatever it took to save his country.


Good, Jérôme thought as he closed the door behind him and stepped out into the street. He had hoped, and indeed believed, that the other officers were still on board but it was nice to have it assured. Roux and Baudin were both near fanatical in their dedication to the cause. General Lucien was a pleasant addition. Though, Jérôme thought, his appearance is understandable given how the fools in the Assembly treated the man. Plus the name Lucien still commanded respect amongst parts of the army. But with himself, Baudin and Captain Giroux they had the loyalty of all the troops within and around the capital. No, he thought, that meeting was just to confirm what he hoped he already knew, it was the next talk that really mattered.

He turned left on Liberty Avenue. Out of the corner of his eye he could see the distant dome of the Assembly rising above the skyline. He surpressed the momentary pang of bitterness. The streets were almost deserted, not surprising for a wet night this time of year. A man came staggering out of an inn down the road, he gave Jérôme a challenging look but backed down when Jérôme pulled back his coat showing the pistol hanging at his waste. From the man's tattered uniform he was a soldier, one of the local garrison who slipped away for a night in the city. Hopefully he's not one of my men. The man jerked back and stumbled off to the west. One of Baudin's then probably. The men all around the city were growing restless and bored. A dangerous combination in soldiers. The Assembly had yet to begin sending the soldiers home, maybe it feard a new Confederate attack? Regardless the capital was ringed by around 11,000 men, which, hopefully, Jérôme could now count on as being loyal to his little plot.

He turned right, then left, then right again heading towards his destination. The small house lay on the far eastern side of the city. It was owned by Jean Leon, an old friend of his father's. When Jérôme entered Jean gave a small movement of his head towards his study at the back but didn't get up from his reading by the fire. Jérôme murmured a thanks and headed to the back room. The young man in there turned from the window to look at him. Roughly the same age and height as Jérôme this was the man that Jérôme needed to win over. His support would be vital when the time came. As a member of the Assembly he had influence in the government amongst the reformers. But it was this man's name that Jérôme needed. This man was Henri Bardet.


The Fall of the Republic
Louisiana: (1819-1823)

List of First Consuls of the First Louisianan Republic:
Philippe Bardet (1798-1803)
Adrien Duport (1803-1808)
Lucien Thomas (1808-1813)
Henry Lambert (1813-1817)*
Jean Dubois (1817-1818)
Louis Fontaine (1818-1819)**

*Resigned following the defeat in the war of 1815-7.
** Ousted by political coup.

In July 1819 a band of ambitious officers and politicians staged what amounted to a military coup in New Orleans, toppling the elected government. The causes of the coup are to be found in the Louisianan defeat to the CAS in the war of 1815-1817. Dissatisfaction with poor and divided political leadership from the capital during the war became overwhelmingly prevalent in the army in the aftermath of the war. In fact in some parts of the military it was the government that was outright blamed for the defeat. This belief rang true for some politicians as well, who also had the added belief that the ruling elite had moved too far from the ideas of the revolution and instead taken on the role of the new aristocracy. Members of the Radical political party were especially prone to take the latter belief. The election of Louis Fontaine as First Consul in 1818 is seen as the tipping point. Fontaine, a political big-wig, was widely regarded as a corrupt and selfish individual. Indeed there is great evidence that he bought the Consular election by paying civil servants to fudge the election results. Fontaine's consulship, along with another Moderate assembly, saw an immediate passing of measures increasing pay for the elite politicians, a rapidly expanding spoils system and the side lining of more reformist and progressive officials and activists. In June 1819 Fontaine, already far too involved in the Assembly's decision making progress for many on the outside, and his cronies announced they were planning to pass a bill making it possible for the First Consul to serve multiple terms as well as requiring the sitting Consul to receive only 40% of the vote to stay in office. This wouldn't stand.

Led by three men, (the respected General Lucien, the politician and son of the nation's first consul Henri Bardet and a young and soon to be famous ambitious officer, Jérôme Bonaparte) 3,000 soldiers from the outlying garrisons stormed the city and seized the Assembly building. Fontaine and his supporters were arrested. A new regime was formed. Lucien, Bardet and Bonaparte were each made a 'Consul' and a new Assembly was formed with Radicals and reformers replacing all those previously loyal to Fontaine. Elections were scheduled for this new Assembly in 1820. However after the news of the coup reached the northern part of the country a counter-revolution broke out around the city of Turin, led by some friends of the former First Consul. General, now Consul, Lucien was appointed by the new government to take an army north to crush the rising before it could move south, he agreed. Then in a critical decision Consul Bardet decided to go north with Lucien to try and lend the weight of his name to a possible peaceful diplomatic solution. Leaving Bonaparte in effective sole command of the capital, and therefore the country. Consumed by ambition and a desire to regain lost territory Bonaparte and his more radical supporters convinced the Assembly to pass a declaration of war against the Confederacy. Bonaparte himself assembled an army of 35,000 men and marched east to cross the Mississippi.

The Louisianan invasion caught the Confederates completely by surprise. In the years following the war the CAS had been focused on internal domestic divisions over slavery as well as the rising tensions with the Spanish Republic over Cuba. Within a month Bonaparte had regained control over all the lands previously lost to the CAS. In doing so he raised new units of freed slaves and encouraged them to fight alongside his men to free their comrades from slavery. The Confederacy called upon veteran general Andrew Jackson who gladly decided to gain fresh victories over his old enemy. Jackson however was not prepared to face Bonaparte. Jérôme was a new brand of military tactician. Learning a lot from his father, a veteran of the Sardinian War, as well as from first hand experience and a natural ingenuity Jérôme would remake war in North America in his image. The goal of the Louisianan Army in the first war had been to seize Atlanta, Jackson assumed that it would be the same again and moved his army to block an advance on the city. Jérôme however cared not for cities instead his maxim was to destroy the enemy army in the field, then the cities would fall like grapes. Bonaparte then feigned at Atlanta and moved a force of 10,000 under the command of his old friend and now commander Jean Baudin to take the town of Manchester, a few miles south of Atlanta. Jackson, believing this to be the main Louisianan thrust towards the state capital marched south to face it. Baudin withdrew west drawing the Confederates with him. Bonaparte then sprung his trap. Having used Baudin as bait, Bonaparte and his 25,000 had marched around West Point Lake in secret and then fell on Jackson's army from the rear. The ensuing Battle of Manchester was a crushing victory for the Louisianans. Jackson himself was killed while attempting to rally his men and the entire Confederate army was wiped out. Atlanta fell three days later.

Louisianan and Confederate forces clash at the Battle of Manchester (1819):

With the fall of Atlanta Bonaparte could now have made peace on favorable terms. He however was determined to achieve even greater success. Detesting slavery he announced the Atlanta Proclamation, freeing all slaves in occupied CAS lands and granting any escaped slave freedom and land in Louisiana if they could escape the Confederacy. The Proclamation forever endeared Jérôme to the slave and ex-slave communities. Around 2,000 freed slaves were raised and armed (with captured CAS weapons) and were integrated into Bonaparte army. Then Bonaparte marched north. The Confederates were in disarray, their great commander had been killed and Atlanta had fallen. Now the Louisianans were marching north! A new army was being assembled in North Carolina to be sent south. Meanwhile Louisianan irregulars and freed slaves had dispersed and were striking at slave plantations across Georgia and parts of Florida. Soon thousands of slaves were freed and a full guerrilla war was being waged across parts of the south. Eager to prevent the complete collapse of the southern part of the country the Confederate government ordered the hastily assembled army of 50,000 men to march south to protect Charleston, the clear objective of Bonaparte's army. The Battle of Hampton in South Carolina would prove to be Jérôme's masterpiece. Outnumbered the Louisianans managed to smash the Confederate army as Bonaparte's masterful use of artillery and the resolve of his loyal infantry proved too much for the Confederates. On March 1st 1820 Jérôme Bonaparte marched into Charleston.

With much of the CAS in tatters Bonaparte was able to enforce whatever peace he wished. The Treaty of Charleston returned all previous lands taken from Louisiana in the first war back to them, the abolition of slavery in the CAS, and a new republic was created out of occupied western Georgia to be run by freed slaves and to be a free and independent state allied to New Orleans. The Confederate government fumed but had no real choice but to sign unless they wanted to see their way of life completely demolished. Bonaparte, and his now fanatically loyal army, returned to New Orleans in May to a tense situation. Bardet and Lucien had been furious to learn of Bonaparte's unilateral invasion of the CAS, and, returning to the capital (after dealing with the northern insurrection) declared Jérôme a traitor to the republic and hoped to have him arrested. The Battle of Hampton and the Treaty of Charleston changed all this however. The magnificent victory in the east had changed Jérôme who now saw himself as an unchallengeable military genius and the rightful ruler of Louisiana. His men, and many others, agreed. Who could argue with his achievements? When Bardet and Lucien tried to have Bonaparte arrested his men decried the proclamation and in turn arrested the arresters. Jérôme marched triumphantly into the Assembly building where he was met by an angry collection of politicians, including Fontaine and his allies, who had escaped during the panic of Bonaparte's return, who refused to allow Bonaparte into the chamber. Bonaparte's loyal soldiers soon forced the issue and drove the politicians out of the building and had them all placed under military 'protection'. Many of Bonaparte's closest allies now encouraged him to seize power to prevent the old elite from ousting him. Jérôme went one step further. Tired of all the petty political maneuvering, disillusioned with the corrupt and inefficient republic and eager to find a more permanent solution to the question of political leadership (made more pressing as word soon arrived that the Confederate government had not abolished slavery and was now raising a new army as well as courting allies abroad) Jérôme Bonaparte abolished the Assembly and the Republic. On July 14th, almost one year to the day of the coup, Jérôme Bonaparte declared himself Emperor of Louisiana and began preparing once more for war.

The Flag of the Empire of Louisiana:


The Great Powers
Britain and France (1805-1830)

In the early 19th Century there were two nations that could be defined as “Great Powers”. They were the only countries capable of global (or near enough) power projection and were the leading parties during the Revolutionary Wars. These of course were Britain and France. Other nations, Austria-Hungary and Prussia for example, were major players in their own regions and others looked to emerge into the ranks of Great Powers in the near future, Russia. But in the period between the Revolutionary Wars and the Fourth Silesian War, London and Paris were the two great capitals.

Great Britain emerged triumphant from the Revolutionary Wars. It had helped liberate Louisiana from France as well as aid in the collapse of the Spanish American empire whilst aiding and assisting its allies on the European continent. One key relationship for Britain in the period 1805-30 was that with the Dominion of New England. The strengthening and continued friendship between New York (later Boston) and London was a great boon to Britain in this period. Trade with the Dominion, as well as with the rest of the ever-growing empire made Britain rich and affluent. The Barbary War (1807-1810) was the turning point in Britain seeing the Dominion as a partner and future ally. With North America now apparently secured Britain turned its attentions elsewhere. It established trading posts throughout Africa and the Pacific, which caused it to have a brief skirmish with the Dutch over Australia. In this period too Britain began making its first major inroads, along with the Portuguese and Dutch, into China.

The primary developments in this period for Britain however were domestic. Ireland was the first issue that drew attention. An Irish Rebellion broke out in 1814, encouraged perhaps by the revolutions in France and the Americas. The rising however did not pose a serious risk. The Reform Act of the previous century, specifically Catholic Emancipation, seemed to have placated the majority of the Irish. The rising was eventually defeated in 1816, interestingly enough the majority of government troops were loyal Irish. The government, now led by the Earl of Liverpool, decided that the loyal Irish should be rewarded to prevent any such rebellion again. In 1818 the government passed the Union Act forming the United Kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland. Ireland, or more properly the Kingdom of Ireland, was given equal footing with Britain and Dublin was given more autonomy, though full executive power stayed in Westminster. The other key political development in Britain during this period was the rise of reform-ism, and republicanism. Many in Britain had since the Four Years War begun calling, quietly, for Britain to become a republic. The 1796 “Kent Speech” is often seen as the birth of the modern British republican movement. But it was after 1805 that the movement begun to gain serious traction. Why, they asked, should Britain remain a monarchy whilst it supported republican movements from Spain to Louisiana? By 1830 a large minority in Parliament were pro-Republic and with King George IV's health rapidly deteriorating and with only a daughter to succeed him the United Kingdoms were heading for a constitutional breaking point.

France was in the losing side of the Revolutionary Wars. It's colonial empire had been much reduced, though it still held Quebec, its Spanish ally had been cut in half and to its east the German states of Prussia, Austria-Hungary and the League were hostile. It however had not been truly defeated. It had actually gained land on the European continent and its armies had proven more that capable. It's own internal revolution had been crushed and it was well on its way to becoming a truly constitutional monarchy. Indeed out of all the states that had fought on the side of reaction it was by far the most reformist, more so indeed that many of its war-time opponents had been, such as Prussia. The old king had died in 1809 and had been succeeded by his son who became Louis XVII. King Louis, like his father, was an advocate of the constitutional limited monarchy. The recently established French parliament in Paris saw its powers grow in the passing of three decrees (in 1812, 1819 and 1825). There was some opposition to this trend both from the left (who wanted more powers to the parliament) and from the right (who wanted less), but in general the reforms were accepted. Though its powers were still short of those of Westminster.

France, like Britain, grew in wealth and power in this period. The new reform-minded French government freed up many of the more archaic and repressive economic and social limits allowing trade and commerce to grow in the Kingdom. And with the new rich lands in the northeast the French state was bringing in more capital than ever before. Like Britain, France set about establishing itself as a global power. The Philippines had already been seized from Spain and French India was reinforced and new allies were courted on the subcontinent. France too sought to reach out to the new Louisianan Empire and forge a friendship with this francophone nation. Quebec was a major part of French foreign policy in this time. Encouraged immigration had seen the population of the colony rise sharply and many, in France and Quebec, began to call for a new relationship between the two. In the end it was decided that Dominionship was far too British instead, similar to the relationship between Portugal and Brasil, Quebec was directly integrated into France and a royally appointed governor would manage Quebec, though Quebecois were allowed to be represented in the Parisian Parliament, known as the Chamber.

France 1830:

Though both Britain and France were content to look to their own domestic political reforms in this period and to the wider world for new lands both were to have their eyes forcibly pulled back to the heart of Europe in 1830. To Silesia.

The Fourth Silesian War
Part I: The Prelude to War

The conflict that would plunge Europe into a war on a scale not seen on the continent since the Thirty Years War was the result of various contributing factors. The question of Silesia would obviously be the spark but under the surface there were numerous forces at work. The aftermath of the Revolutionary Wars, the first signs of the emergence of nationalism, republicanism and global ambitions all played their parts. The Revolutionary Wars had destabilised the continent and the roughly thirty years between the wars was in many ways a powder keg just waiting for the spark.

Poland had undergone dramatic change since the Civil War (1794-1798). Louis II had crushed the rebels and recentralised authority under his rule from the capital at Warsaw. The abolition of the liberum veto as well as other reforms, limited reforms, had allowed Poland to evolve into a modern kingdom. The nation had also managed to avoid becoming entangled in the Revolutionary Wars as well as escaping from Russian invasion due to St. Petersburg's focus on the Balkans. Louis II died in 1823 and was succeeded by his son Henry who became Henry IV of Poland. Henry, like his father and grandfather, was a supporter of the monarch's authority, however he was also inspired by the wave of reform around Europe and the Americas and in 1826 he officially abolished serfdom in the Kingdom and passed new laws to benefit the lower and middle classes. The nobles grumbled as usual, but the memory of the Civil War, kept them quite. However Henry was determined to go further, he wanted to make Poland a great power again. Plus a patriotic struggle would, he hoped, rally the disgruntled aristocracy around him and the nation. A campaign against Russia was considered unwise so instead he looked to retake the old Polish territory of Silesia. Polish forces began preparing for war.

Austria, or more properly Austria-Hungary, had become one of the most socially and culturally advanced states in Europe. Francis I, the ardent reformer, had transformed his country along lines outlined by his father, Joseph II. Throughout the late 1820s however Austria was becoming increasingly focussed on foreign affairs. It had one eye on Germany watching the actions of Munich, as well as Dortmund and Berlin and the other eye on the Balkans where the Bear was continuing to entrench itself. Simultaneously it was forced to keep glancing at Italy as well as looking over its shoulder at Poland and Silesia. Francis was growing ever fearful of Austria being politically surrounded, hence the reach out to the Turk. More important however was the relation with Berlin. As war with Poland became increasingly likely Vienna was determined to get the guarantee of support from King Wilhelm.

The escalating Austro-Polish tensions over Silesia were observed with great interest by Berlin. The Prussians themselves had desires to regain Silesia, though their formal renouncement of claims to the territory under Frederick William II were a bit of an impediment. The Prussians though, despite this, had no plans to attempt to seize Silesia. A three-way war for the territory would be disastrous. In the end, after much lobbying from Vienna, the king and his ministers decided that Polish territory would be just as beneficial, linking up East Prussia with the rest of the country. Consequently on August 9th 1830 King Wilhelm renewed the Austro-Prussian Alliance of 1783 and announced Prussia would support Austria is Poland attacked. The Poles now reaffirmed their alliance with Saxony-Bavaria to counter this and seek to force the Austrians to fight on at least two fronts. The battle-lines were drawn.

There were still however some major question marks over the coming conflict. Would the war stay focused on Silesia with Austria and Prussia set against Poland and Saxony-Bavaria? Or would the other powers get involved. In September King Louis XVIII of France, king since 1828, wrote to his cousin in Warsaw asking Poland not to go to war over Silesia, however, he wrote, if war becomes inevitable France would support them. Other concerns were raised over Britain and the League. Would the League honour its alliance with Prussia? There was great doubt over this. The new Grand Marshall, King Frederick of Münster, was an old man who was focused on the internal political dealings of the League and was known to bear the Prussians no great love. Britain had since the Revolutionary Wards sought to distance itself from the continental bickering. However Vienna and Berlin were both confident that Britain would join them in order to prevent France from gaining too much power on the continent. The rest of the German states were for the most part up for grabs, though Hanover was an ally of the Poles. The Italian states too could be entangled, the peninsula was indeed subject to many political forces bubbling under the radar. The birth of the Neapolitan Republic had destabilised Italy and this force had been growing, unnoticed by the outside powers. The biggest unknown however was of course Russia.

The Russians had not fought in the Revolutionary Wars proper, instead they had been fighting against the Turks in the Balkan War (1796-1802) which had seen Russia gain a trio of new allies in the region and finally cement their control of the Crimea. Russia internally had been undergoing huge changes since the 1770s. Serfdom and the more archaic laws had been abolished and Russia had seen six decades of modernisation, partial liberalisation and military reform. The son of Paul I and new Tsar, Peter IV, had continued these trends. The Russian Duma had become a significant political force. The old division between Conservatives and Moderates had disappeared. Now there were the Traditionalists, who emphasized slower reform and expansion to the north and west, and the Militarists, who were in favour of more rapid reforms and wished to finish off the Turks. Peter IV however was more favourable to the Traditionalist party who were the dominant force. The Poles were unwilling to go to war over Silesia with Russia looming on their eastern border.

In October however King Louis II of Poland was given information by his ministers that they in turn had received from their agents in St. Petersburg. It indicated that the Russians were preparing to go to war with Sweden to regain control of Karelia and push into Finland. With this information and France's promise of aid the Poles decided to act. On October 20th 1830 a Polish army of around 30,000 men invaded Silesia, the war had started.

Europe 1830, The Eve of War:

The Fourth Silesian War 1830-1834

The Shifting Balance
North America: 1820-1830

The Third Louisianan-Confederate War started on August 20th 1820 when Jérôme I, Emperor of Louisiana, invaded the Confederacy of American States. The CAS had been obliged, under the terms of the Treaty of Charleston (which ended the Second Louisianan-Confederate War of 1819), to abolish slavery throughout the country. It however had done no such thing and in the few months since Jérôme withdrew from the CAS the government in Charleston had cracked down on slave insurrections and began mobilising new armies. The newly created Freedmen's Republic was full of slaves who had recently escaped from the Confederacy who told of the new counter-insurrection. Word was sent to New Orleans and the Emperor decided to act. 35,000 Louisianan soldiers invaded Georgia, the third time such an undertaking had happened in six years. The Confederates had assembled an army of 40,000 men near Atlanta ready to stop the Louisianan advance on the city.

Bonaparte however had no intention of taking Atlanta. The city, partially raised during the previous war, was no longer the important hub it had been, in addition Jérôme was convinced, correctly, that the Confederacy presumed he would strike this way. Instead Bonaparte went north-east coming round behind Atlanta and cutting it off from the north of the country. The Louisianan goal appeared to be Charlotte, capital of North Carolina. The Confederate forces were completely outmaneuvered. There was now a division within the CAS army. Many officers advocated that they stay where they are, believing Bonaparte's move to be a feint and that his primary goal was still Atlanta. Others, including the general Thomas Taylor, called for an immediate move north to engage Bonaparte. Eventually the latter view won out and the Confederates marched north with all speed. When word arrived of their movements a second smaller Louisianan force (around 6,000 men) as well as a force from the Freemen's Republic (c.3500) moved into Georgia from the south west. Like the last war they began a campaign of slave liberation and scorched earth eventually moving up to take the now lightly defended Atlanta. The great drama however was fought at the Battle of Hartwell.

Bonaparte had hoped that the Confederates would be forced to come to him, and he had prepared well. His forces had fortified the town of Hartwell, on the shores of the lake of the same name. To the east behind the river he had deployed his artillery and behind them, hidden, his cavalry. The Confederates arrived on February 2nd 1821. They immediately began an assault on Hartwell. The strike was bloody and the Confederates took great losses from the artillery across the river. General Taylor soon ordered an attack by his cavalry to cross the river and take out the cannon. Unfortunately for him the cavalry got bogged down in the river and were hit hard by the artillery. Eventually they crossed and were now ready to take out the guns. At this moment however Jérôme unleashed his own cavalry, divided in two groups. The first group struck the exhausted and battered Confederate horse on the east side of the river, routing them and saving the cannon. The second forced crossed the river further to the north over a pre-prepared wooded bridge. They poured down into the Confederate infantry assaulting the town shattering them. The Louisianan infantry now sallied out of Hartwell, and joining the cavalry, put the Confederates to flight. In only six months of war the Confederate Army of Georgia had been annihilated and the southern half of the country was in enemy hands.

Louisianan Cavalry counter-charge the Confederates at the Battle of Hartwell (1821):

The Confederate still had another large force available however, the Army of Northern Virginia, led by Virginian Robert Adams. It was at this point however that the political developments doomed the CAS. There had been a growing resentment in Virginia over the last decade, or two, that Charleston was overreaching its authority and impeding on Virginians rights. The defeats in the south had not helped. Once word of the disaster at Hartwell reached Richmond there was a wave of defeatism and anti-war sentiment was high. Orders came from Charleston that the Army of Northern Virginia was to march south to defend the capital. The Virginians were aghast. They did not want to send their army (as they saw it) to die in attempt to save the Carolinans, whilst leaving themselves open to a Yankee attack no less! Leading Virginian politicians and General Adams conferred long into the night, and in the end refused to march the army south. The Confederate government was astonished and angered, they ordered that General Adams be relieved of command. The Virginians had another idea however. On March 30th 1821 the state government in Richmond, Virginia voted overwhelmingly to secede from the Confederacy and declare the independent Republic of Virginia.

The Confederate cause was now hopeless. Bonaparte's forces continued to move north and took Charlotte in April and then Raleigh soon after. Here he paused to let his men rest and gather supplies. During this period he negotiated peace with Virginia. Virginian independence was recognised and it was allowed to keep its borders as they were, provided they free the slaves, which they did (though with much grumbling). In the south of the Confederacy however things were still active. The Louisianans and Freedmen had continued their fight, battling the Confederacy in a series of skirmishes. There was however another force in the region, the Five Civilized Tribes. The natives had been gradually relocated during the early 1800s, some to Louisiana, the rest to Florida. Now, with backing from New Orleans, they too rose up against the CAS, and by the end of 1821 had seized large parts of the peninsula. The war would drag on until Charleston fell in early 1822 when peace was signed in the Treaty of Queenstown. Virginian independence was accepted, slavery was abolished (for real this time), the Freemen's Republic was enlarged, Louisiana received parts of Georgia and North Carolina and southern Florida was made independent as the Native Republic of Florida (or at least thats what other nations called it), a country comprised of the Seminole, Creek and Choctaw tribes. Bonaparte's legend was now established, he returned to New Orleans in triumph.

Rebelling Confederate slaves fighting in southern Georgia (1822):

In the far north of the continent meanwhile Britain and Russia had begun a period of serious competition over the Oregon region. British Canada had expanded westward as immigration increased throughout the 1820s, driving towards the Pacific. The Russians had simultaneously being moving south from Alaska. A skirmish broke out in 1824 and again in 1828 between British and Russian settlers. In the end to avoid war Britain and Russia divided up the territory, Russia gaining land whilst Britain got its Pacific coast. The rest of Oregon remain a disputed tinderbox however as British, Américan and Louisianan settlers all flooded into the region. In eastern Canada, Fort James had grown into a large city. It was also well fortified. The growth of Quebec was seen as a threat to the people both here and in New England. Quebec had been officially integrated into France in 1825. Since then French investment, economic and military, had increased and the population of the province had risen to just shy of 2 million people by the end of the decade.

In the 1820s New England had meanwhile continued its development and economic rise. Trade with Britain and the Caribbean continued to boom. First Minister Arthur Johnson, a Federalist, continued to push for a more assertive and prominent New England. The Royal New England Navy (RNEN) grew in size and strength. The army too was not neglected however as the wars to the south convinced the country that it needed to be able to defend itself. Relations with New Orleans cooled considerably during this time as the expansionist policies of Bonaparte were regarded with suspicion. Internally New England was the industrial heart of North America. Factories and iron works began to dot the Dominion, in addition rail-roads sprung up along the east coast, and out west connecting the cities of Queenstown and Pittsburgh. Domestically there was the rise of a third political party, alongside the Federalists and Whigs, the Liberals. The Liberals advocated a (surprise) liberal social agenda and were a pro-independence party. By 1830 however they were still by far the smallest of the parties.

Louisiana after 1822 was the powerful united French-speaking heart of North America. With the Confederacy finally dealt with the Emperor now set about domestic issues. A new constitution was drawn up. The Assembly was preserved as were the departments (now 48 with the new territories). Its powers had however been drastically reduced and supreme executive authority now lay with the Emperor. The country's population continued to rise as immigrants from Europe continued to arrive (primarily from France, Italy and the French Low Countries) and bringing with them the Industrial Revolution. The southern part of the country began to urbanise and, using the Mississippi river system, became an industrial and commercial power-hub. New Orleans controlled the river trade of the continent and became the largest city in North America outside of the UPA (Boston also claimed this title and in truth the two cities were extremely close). By the late 1820s however tensions had begin to rise with the United Provinces over Tejas. The border region between the two was filled with immigrants from Louisiana and elsewhere and was increasingly restless under the control of Mexico City. The Tejas issue would be explosive in the coming years. The British Native Protectorate too expanded into Oregon. It also would have growing issues with Louisiana over the issue of Native Americans in the border region between them. In the rump-Confederacy things were not good however. The CAS had lost huge amounts of land as well as its most populous state. The abolition of slavery had caused the Confederate economy to implode. The government in Charleston seemed increasingly unable to cope, and in 1829 the republic was overthrown by a military coup led by general James Moore who was made President, the country was now run by a military dictatorship.


The Fourth Silesian War


The Fourth Silesian War
Part II: Storms in Silesia

(October 1830 to April 1831)

Prince Philippe of Poland, younger brother to the reigning Henry IV, led an army of thirty thousand men into Austrian Silesia. To his right an army of 22,000 led by Count Grabowski moved to prevent a Prussian move south and protect the flank of the main advance. To Philippe's left a similar size force under Count Poniatowski headed to secure southern Silesia and the town of Ratibor. Five days after Polish forces launched their invasion Saxony-Bavaria declared war on Austria-Hungary. Prussia soon joined the war on Austria's side. The goal of the Polish armies was to secure as much of Silesia as quickly as possible and above all else to prevent the Prussian and Austrian armies linking up and co-operating.

To that end the Saxobavarians launched an invasion of Silesia from the east under Prince Maximilian, eldest son of the king, with an army of around 32,000. Maximilian sought to link up with Polish forces near Goldberg and sever the Austro-Prussian forces. By now Austria had begun moving its own armies into battle. Prince Leopold commanded the Army of Bohemia (34,000) and was ordered by Vienna to move north-east and engage the Poles. Archduke Joseph and the Army of Silesia (31,000) had already moved to counter the Polish forces under Poniatowski. Duke Charles meanwhile was given 20,000 men to prevent a Saxonbavarian invasion of Bohemia from the north. Joseph's forces fought a battle against the Poles near Oppeln, in which the Austrians were forced to retreat. The Battle of Oppeln, in January, was a victory for the outnumbered Polish army who capitalised on their success and moved south to take the city of Ratibor. Prince Leopold (overall Austrian commander in the theatre) was now aware of the Saxo-Polish plan to prevent him linking up with the Poles. To prevent such a move he led his army north, joined with some forces from Joseph's command, and headed towards the city of Liegnitz.

The Prussians by now had entered the theatre. Prince Frederick, heir to the Prussian throne, led an army of 35,000 men south into Silesia. He too was determined to prevent the allies being cut off and sought to link up with the Austrians. At Sagan in mid February, he engaged a Saxon force under Maximilian's command and achieved a resounding success. This was the first example in the war of the more experienced Prussian forces (having successfully battled in the Pomeranian War a few years ago) outfighting their less veteran foes. The Saxobavarians were forced to regroup southeast. The Saxon Duke Ernest, commanding an army of 19,000, was ordered to increase his defences in northern Saxony in case the Prussians headed his way. Frederick of Prussia had other ideas though. The victory at Sagan had offered him an opportunity to swing round behind the Polish lines and strike at Grabowski's rear. The Prussian forces immediately began such a move taking the town of Glogau and crossing the Oder, throwing the Poles into a panic.

The Austrians by now had beaten off the Saxons in a series of skirmishes and continued their move north. The Poles under Philippe had overran large areas of Silesia and had taken Breslau. Determined to link up with Maximilian and the Saxobavarian forces, Philippe and his army crossed the Oder and attacked Liegnitz. The town repulsed the first assault and the Poles were forced to prepare a siege. Before they could launch a second attack however, to the south the Austrians under Archduke Leopold arrived to break the siege on April 2nd. The two sides skirmished back and forth for a day or two and were preparing for a full-scale battle when the Saxobavarians appeared from the west. The two allies began preparing to attack the now outnumbered Austrians. As the first cannon began to sound riders brought news to Leopold that a Prussian force of 9,000 men under a General von Clausewitz was three hours away, having been sent south by Frederick whilst the main army dealt with Grabowski. Leopold sent the rider back to the Prussians asking Clausewitz to “march to the sound of the guns”, meanwhile his own army prepared to do battle with the Saxon-Polish forces. The date was April 4th 1831.


The Fourth Silesian War
Part III: Fog of War, Call of Battle
(1830 to 1832)

The Fourth Silesian War had begun with the Polish invasion of Silesia in October 1830. Within weeks tens of thousands of men were fighting for control of the province as Poland and Saxony-Bavaria opposed the armies of the Austro-Prussian alliance. The other nations of Europe too looked on with concern and began preparing their armies, resigned to the likelihood of themselves being called into the war. As the fighting in Silesia continued the other German states began to be pulled closer and closer to war. In March of 1831 the Prussian army under Prince Frederick completed its encirclement of General Grabowski's Polish army and crushed them in the ensuing engagement. The victory here was a great triumph for the Prussians who had eliminated the immediate Polish threat to Prussia itself. Frederick now decided the time was right to invade Poland itself. A second Prussian force, the Army of East Prussia, had launched its own attack south into Poland. Frederick aimed to head east and join with this force before moving on to Warsaw.

The Silesian Campaign of the winter of 1830/1 climaxed in the great Battle of Liegnitz. The battle would rage from the morning of April 4th to the evening of the next day and would in all constitute over 120,000 men. The battle began at 5:00AM with Polish cavalry striking at the Austrian right flank. The Austrians managed to beat off the attack while attempting to withdraw south slightly to gain a better defensive position. Austrian and Polish forces fought bitterly all morning, until around 3:00PM when the Saxobavarian forces entered the battle, attacking the Austrian left. Around 5 o'clock the city of Liegnitz itself fell to the Poles. The Austrians attempted to hold the two opposing forces off with battle raging all evening. At dawn on the next day the three armies spotted a new force arriving from the north, around 9,000 strong. The Poles, believing them to be their own reinforcements, continued their fight with Archduke Leopold. Leopold, for his part, hoped they were the Prussians. He decided to gamble, remaining on the defensive on his left, he sent his cavalry in a full attack on the Polish infantry. This great charge (nearly 7,000 horse) coincided with the new army (who of course were in fact the Prussians under von Clausewitz) falling on the Polish rear. To make things worse the Prussians managed to catch Prince Philippe of Poland isolated and the Polish commander was killed by an anonymous Prussian horseman. The Polish forces soon fell into disorder and by around 4:45PM they were in retreat. The Saxobavarians under Prince Maximilian fatally hesitated to send men to assist the Poles around noon, fearing a larger Prussian force was on the way. With the Poles in flight, the Saxons began to disengage from the battle as the Austrians retook Liegnitz. By 7:30PM on the 5th the battle was over, around forty thousand men were dead or wounded.


The Battle of Liegnitz would be one of the major events in the Fourth Silesian War. There would be two key consequences of the Austro-Prussian victory. Firstly it effectively ended the possibility of Poland and Saxony-Bavaria being able to link up in Silesia and act as a unified force, handing the initiative and upper hand to the Austrians and Prussians. Secondly there was France. The French had been preparing to enter the war in support of the Poles, as promised. However there was considerable opposition in France itself. Many, nobles and commoners, saw no reason for France to intervene in a war over Silesia. The king on the other hand was eager to support his Bourbon cousin and had just as many supporters as opponents. Liegnitz changed the game. Vienna and Berlin had hoped that a major victory in Germany would cause France to avoid joining the war, not wishing to back a losing side. How wrong they were. Leignitz sent alarm bells ringing in Paris. What would happen if Austria and Prussia crushed the Poles and Saxons, as many now feared? Would they divide Poland between them? Would Saxony-Bavaria be swallowed up by the Hapsburgs and Hohenzollerns? France must intervene now or face a hostile Europe unified from the Rhine to the Russian border. France declared war on Austria and Prussia on April 30th 1831. Hanover, under political pressure from France and Poland, followed suit a week later.

The French, and to a lesser extent the Hanoverian, declarations of war were a significant blow to the Austro-Prussian alliance. It was now necessary for the allies to change their battle plan. It was decided that they should attempt to hold in the west whilst trying to knock Poland out of the war, hoping that with the Poles out the chief casus belli would be gone and maybe peace could be established. To that end the Army of East Prussia continued its campaign against the Poles in the north whilst simultaneously the Austrian Army of Hungary was to invade Poland from the south whilst the army in Silesia under Archduke Joseph launched a renewed drive to force the southern Polish army out of the territory. The Prussian army under Prince Frederick however was ordered back to Prussia proper and was sent west to counter the Hanoverians. With Frederick moving west the Army of East Prussia, under General Franz Mosh, lacked the strength to take Warsaw, instead it set about conquering the Posen region, where it defeated a Polish force under Paweł Dikowski near Toruń (German: Thorn). The Austrians now began to prepare for a much greater conflict than originally hoped. Archduke Leopold (victor of Liegnitz) was to invade Saxony-Bavaria to gain a foothold there before the French could arrive. Another Austrian army was being raised in Venetia to prepare for any Italian campaign. Berlin and Vienna were now, also, determined to balance out the sides by diplomatic means. Diplomatic pressure on the League of the Rhine mounted throughout May of 1831. The average Rhinelander was sympathetic to the Austro-Prussian cause. However the elites, especially the Grand Marshall, King Frederick of Münster, were opposed to war. No help came from Dortmund for the time being. Britain however seemed more receptive. The British, secretly, promised to enter the war as soon as possible (distracted by a rising in Bengal at this time).

The French war effort began in Italy. A French army, roughly 38,000 men, moved into Sardinia. The Italian state, a Bourbon ruled French ally, joined the war and contributed a further 20,000 men. This huge force then invaded Austrian Venetia. The Austrian army here was not yet fully assembled so the defenders withdrew, delaying the French advance with a series of skirmishes. The French did however manage to win a large engagement near Verona in July 1831. The victory at Verona was enough to bring the other pro-French Italian nations (Modena, Lucca and Tuscany) into the war. The Papal States too were brought in (the French military presence in the country likely helped them make this decision). A bright spot for Vienna however was the actions of the Neapolitan Republic who invaded the Papal States in August forcing the French to distract themselves from the north. In Germany the French crossed the Rhine with a huge force led by Prince Charles (brother of the King) which numbered roughly 50,000 men. Baden had refused permission for the French to cross their nation, so the French simply invaded. The invasion of Baden however push other German states into the Austro-Prussian camp. Hessia and Wurzburg joined the war in early September, a significant addition to the Austrian and Prussian forces in Germany.

The Hanoverians had attempted a swift invasion of Prussia which had been beaten off by a much smaller Prussian army under General Richter von Manthofen, buying time for the main Prussian army to return from Silesia. The Saxobavarians meanwhile were on the defensive. Their army had withdrawn from the defeat at Leignitz, pursued cautiously by the Austrians. The joining of the war by Hessia and Wurzburg however had left them nearly surrounded. Saxony proper was almost cut off when an Austrian army invade the centre of the country. Dresden was ordered fortified whilst the main Saxobavarian force prepared in the south awaiting French forces. Swabia and Wurttemberg, seeing Baden's fate, both agreed to allow French forces through, though they were reluctant to declare war on France's enemies, known as the Coalition, but were eventually pressured into doing so. On September 20th the French met a Hessian-Wurzburg force at the Battle of Hanau, attempting to crush the allies before the Prussians could arrive to assist them. The result was an overwhelming French victory shattering the Coalition forces. The French continued their advance threatening the city of Wurzburg itself before the Prussians under Frederick arrived. The Battle of Wurzburg was a tie. The French had threatened to break the Coalition army but the timely arrival of the Hessians forced them to withdrew to the west, though the Prussian and Wurzburg forces had taken quite a beating.

The French invasion of Germany greatly antagonized the Rhinelander population. But the Grand Marshall continued to remain against war. In October however a popular revolt (rumours indicated British and Prussian assistance) ousted King Frederick in Münster. Following the example of Cologne a republic was declared, with one of the revolt leaders Kuld von Reyn (a respected local aristocrat) made Chancellor. With Frederick's overthrow (he went into exile in Switzerland) the League needed a new Grand Marshall. The pro-war King August of Westphalia got the nod, he brought the League into the war in November. The League's, eventual, declaration of war restored balance to the conflict. The French were forced to send a new force to deal with them. The Palatinate, in the path of the French, joined the Coalition and invited the League to send a force to protect it, which they did. French diplomatic efforts were also under way however, backed up by the great wealth of the nation. Towards year's end they pulled off a great political coup by convincing Sweden to enter the war in a bid to retake Pomerania, Prussia was now fighting on all sides. By the end of 1831 nearly half of Germany was in French hands. French forces had also arrived in Bavaria to help drive out the Austrians, and were simultaneously pressuring the League and the Coalition armies in Wurzburg. In Poland Austro-Prussian forces had despite, early victories, faced increasing Polish resistance. This Polish resilience caused the Coalition to begin to consider approaching Russia to enter the war. However, despite the benefit of Russia fighting Poland (and indeed Sweden) Berlin and Vienna were reluctant to see a Russian dominated Poland, let alone Russian armies on their own borders. In Italy French and allied forces had besieged Venice but in the south were facing a gradual Neapolitan drive north whilst pro-republican stirrings were beginning in northern Italian states. The war had raged for over a year, and thousands were dead, but the conflict was only just beginning.

The situation end of 1831:


(Note Denmark is not pro-Coalition is as much as it is anti-Sweden, it just happens to be the same thing).

Edit: Also this map makes an error in not showing Karelia as Swedish, my mistake.

The Fourth Silesian War
Part IV: Men and Steel
(1832 to 1834)

In December of 1831 the last remnants of the Bengali rebellion had been crushed by the British. In the early days of the new year the United Kingdoms declared war on the Alliance and joined the conflict as it had promised. Denmark, with very little pushing, followed suit and joined the Coalition in early February. The addition of these two northern powers once again shifted the dimensions of the war. The Danes attacked Sweden from the west from Norway. Despite some initial successes here their advance stalled. Denmark also, in a secret pact with Prussia, invaded Holstein, subduing the country in a matter of weeks. From here they could now threaten Hanover from the north. As the Prussian western army under General Richter von Manthofen, now flushed with reinforcements from the east, launched an attack westward in March 1832 into Hanover they were supported by Danish actions to the north. The British intervention was a massive blow to France, who had hoped that the fighting in Bengal would have dragged on for longer (indeed French agents had been active in encouraging and arming the rebels). The immediate result of the UK joining the war was its financial muscle, huge amounts of money now flooded into its Coalition allies on the continent staving off the financial depressions that had threatened them. As Britain set about preparing itself for a European war it was able to land a small force, roughly 12,000 men, in the northern part of the League to assist the fighting in Germany. The Royal Navy meanwhile moved to enact a blockade of France and win the war at sea.

For the first half of 1832 the war continued to drag on. The Poles continued to put up a brave fight in defence of their country. A Prussian attack on Warsaw was repulsed in April, though there was little chance of pushing the Prussians out entirely. To the south the Austrian advance into Galicia had managed to seize control of most of the territory but was unable to capitalise on this success as first call for men and munitions was Germany. Polish forces, enjoying a brief respite, began assembling new forces further east to prepare for a counter-attack. The Polish state, centralised and expanded under the Bourbon kings, was waging war like never before seen. This conflict, viewed as a life or death struggle for Poland and the Polish people, saw the first signs of total war in Poland, a precursor to the conflicts of the twentieth century. The entire population of the country was being affected as thousands were called up for the struggle. These vast armies that were being gathered were often inexperienced, ill-equipped and poorly supplied but were to fight with a ferocity that would stun their enemies. The Polish government had sent feelers down to the United Kingdom of the Danube. Poland was attempting to bring the UKD into the war, pointing at the great reward of Austrian Transylvania.

Prussian cavalry in Posen (1832):

In Italy 1832 was to prove a bloody year. The French and their Italian allies had managed to defeat the Austrians in Venetia and place Venice itself under siege. The city however was holding out. In May of 1832 the siege was broken by an Austrian counter-attack supported by a Royal Navy contingent operating out of Malta, where they had gained permission to establish a small base. This defeat shook the Italian allies of France who were facing growing problems at home. The British blockade and the losses in the war were undermining the states at home. Compounding this was the growing republican movements inspired by the actions of Naples. The Neapolitan Republic had achieved a surprising amount of success in the early years of the war. By now they had isolated Rome and seized much of the Papal lands. In an effort to drive back the republicans a Tuscan led army from the various Italian states attacked the Neapolitan armies near San Marino. The battle was a close one and could have gone differently had the Luccan forces not broken so easily. In the end the Battle of San Marino was a victory for the Neapolitans. San Marino would have a climatic effect on Italy. Republican elements in Tuscany encouraged by San Marino, and egged on by British agents, launched a revolution in the country plunging it into a civil war. Similar uprisings now broke out in Lucca and Modena.

July 1832 was a low point for France. The British and Danes had entered the war and shifted the balance against them. Despite heroic resistance the Poles were still on the back foot and to their south their Italian allies were collapsing into revolution. It was only in Germany, the decisive theatre, that France could now achieve victory. Fortunately it was in the German battle that France was doing the best. The Palatinate had by now fallen and, despite the setback at Wurzburg, central Germany was being slowly won. As French forces arrived in Saxony-Bavaria the Austrian advance here slowed, and was then reversed. The Saxobavarian and French forces freed much of the country and struck into Tyrolia catching the Austrians off guard and forcing them to divert troops here from the Italian theatre. To the west the French and their German allies had launched a new offensive. Wurzburg fell this time around as the Prussians and Hessians were driven back. The League of the Rhine was also under invasion. French forces had seized Trier and much of Nassau. Their advance was checked a few miles south of Cologne however as Rhineland and British forces beat them back. The war continued in this way for the rest of the year. In Germany the French and their allies continued to make slow but steady progress as the Hanoverians attempted to hold out against the Prussians, Danes and now British troops. The Poles fought a fighting retreat using scorched earth tactics to buy time for the gathering reserves to be mobilized. In Italy Franco-Sardinian armies now fought Austrians, Neapolitans and republican rebels throughout the north of the country alongside the loyalist monarchists whilst Rome was cut off in the south. Around the globe British and French forces clashed on land (in Canada and India) and at sea. The Dominion of New England had not joined the war, worried as it was by events on its own continent, but had moved troops to the border with Quebec and was fighting an undeclared war against French shipping. It was in early 1833 that the face of the war was to change once again, and dramatically.

Russia. This great empire was unrecognisable from that of Catherine. Its economy and society had been liberalised, its government was ruled by a constitution and its military had grown and learnt from its wars against the Turks. The Russians had sat out the Revolutionary Wars in the rest of Europe and consequently had not gained any land. They were however not about to sit out this great conflict. Russian politics were at this point divide between the Traditionalists (cautious reformists and Europe focused) and the Militarists (more radical and looking to the Balkans and the Turks). Throughout 1831 and 1832 it was clear, at least to those in St. Petersburg, that Russia was on the verge of war. It was not however clear who that war would be against. The Militarists advocated a campaign south. Now that the Austrians and British were distracted the time was right to drive the Ottomans out of the Balkans and on to Constantinople! The Traditionalists argued that Poland and Sweden were both fighting in the west. A strike east could bring new lands and glory and would see Russia gain strong allies. What was obvious however was that Russia could not do both and must act fact lest this opportunity pass them by. In January 1833 the Danish ambassador handed the Tsar a letter from his king asking Russia to join them against the Swedes. Peter IV, already more supportive of the Traditionalist viewpoint, decided finally what to do. In February 1833 the Russian Empire declared war on the Alliance and invaded Sweden and Poland.

The Russian invasion doomed Poland. The Poles were to fight a heroic resistance however. The gathering reserve armies in the east were sent to counter the Russian move. The Russians, overconfident and lacking in recent military experience, were halted and then defeated in a titanic battle near Minsk. This however prevented the deployment of the reserves to the west. The Austrians and Prussians launched a combined offensive in the Spring which achieved great success. Polish forces were recalled from the east to defend the capital. The Russians, learning quickly, renewed their offensive winning a great battle near Wilno (Vilna/Vilnius). Pressed by three armies the Polish state began to collapse.

Russian infantry at the Battle of Wilno (1833):

The Swedes too were now having great difficulty. Any attempt to regain Pomerania was now nothing but a dream as all efforts went into fighting off invasion. The Russian attack had stalled against a line of Swedish fortifications in Finland and Karelia. As Spring became Summer however the Russians managed to knock out fortress after fortress and soon were spilling into Finland. The Danes had had a difficult time in the west, fighting in Norway and in Germany. The Russian intervention allowed them to regain the upper hand however and they were soon driving the Swedes back. For France this was a catastrophe. In Paris it was decided something had to be done to prop up their eastern allies. It was decided that a French fleet would join with their Swedish counterparts to crush the Danish navy. Winning control of the sea they would cut the Danes in half buying the Swedes time to regroup as well as opening the possibility of assistance to Poland. As Germany, Italy and Poland burned the French navy set off from Brest heading east. The Brits, who French spies had tried to mislead into thinking the ships were going to Canada, were not fooled and shadowed the French. As the French and Swedish navies joined in the Skagerrak strait they were surprised to find not just the Danes waiting for them but the Royal Navy. The Battle of Skagerrak was to be one of the largest naval battles of the 19th century. For twelve hours the two allied navies fired at each other. But as the day wore on it was the Anglo-Danish navy that gained the upper hand. The Swedes broke off from the battle, knowing that the complete loss of their fleet would spell their country's doom. The French, now abandoned and outnumbered, were seriously bloodied and eventually fled back to France. The Battle of Skagerrak was the turning point of the war. With the seas now completely in Coalition hands Sweden and Poland were doomed.

Royal Navy ships near Skagerrak (1833):

Events in Italy had gone from bad to worse for the Alliance. The republican rebels had won out in the three small Italian states and had joined up with the Neapolitans. The unified republican forces were now invading Sardinia. This was the birth of Italian nationalism. The unified Italian armies, united under the Republican movement, had gained control of most of the peninsula. Pan-Italian feelings were on the rise. In Sicily as well there were important developments in this time. The Kingdom of Sicily had not entered the war. Its king, Francis I, was dying of disease. He had no male children and his brother Leopold had died a few years back. The only likely successor was his cousin Charles, now Charles V of Spain. Francis died in August 1833 and Charles was declared king. The rest of Europe, tearing itself apart in war, did not notice for the most part or did not care. The one nation of note who did care a great deal was the Spanish Republic. Madrid was actually in favour of the succession, believing that the joining of the Spanish kingdom and Sicily would shift Barcelona's focus eastward and away from the republic. The Republic's ambassador in Barcelona told Charles V that the Republic would not oppose the union with force (a threat that if carried out would likely have ended in the Kingdom's defeat) provided Charles drop any claim to the rest of Spain forever. Charles didn't like this one bit but his more cautious advisers told him to accept the deal, Sicily over war any day they said. Consequently on August 28th 1833 Charles was declared King Charles V of the United Kingdom of Aragon and Sicily.

The French needed, and needed badly, to achieve a massive knock-out victory in Germany to shatter the Coalition before Poland, Italy and Sweden all collapsed. Throughout late 1833 the various armies in Germany skirmished and maneuvered. Hessia was overrun in September and not long later Cologne fell to France. In Dortmund the Council of the Rhine passed the New League Act which centralised power in the capital and granted the Grand Marshall increased powers. The Rhinelanders felt that their internal divisions were hampering their war effort and with the French in Cologne urgent action was needed.The Austrians had however regained the upper hand against the Saxobavarians and Hanover was on the point of surrender. The Austrians, Rhinelanders and Prussians now launched a combined counter-attack. The three forces moved to threaten Leipzig, a victory they hoped would force Saxony-Bavaria out of the war. The French and Saxobavarians moved to counter this drive and crush the Coalition forces once and for all. On November 10th 1833 over six hundred thousand men clashed at the Battle of Leipzig, known to history as the Battle of Five Armies.

The flag flown by the Rhinelander armies after the New League Act:

The Fourth Silesian War
Part V: Smoke, Blood and Iron
(Leipzig: November 10th - 12th 1833)

The Battle of Leipzig (aka the Battle of Five Armies, or the Battle of the Nations) was the defining moment of the Fourth Silesian War. The battle would determine the fate of the conflict as well as the balance of power in Europe for the next several decades. It was by far the largest battle in the conflict and indeed is believed to be the largest battle, in terms of combatants, in European history until that point. Well over half a million men fought in the battle. The Battle of Leipzig marked the end of the German campaign of late 1833. As their allies in the east gradually began to collapse France and Saxony-Bavaria were seeking a great victory in the centre of Europe to shatter the Coalition and provide acceptable peace terms. The Coalition armies (Austria, Prussia and the League) had invaded Saxony. Focusing on Leipzig they sough to force the Saxobavarians out of the war and leave France isolated. The Alliance armies were comprised of 200,000 French and 120,000 Saxobavarian and other German allies, 320,000 in total. The Coalition had amassed an even larger force of 135,000 Prussians, 170,000 Austrians and 60,000 Rhinelanders, a combined army of roughly 365,000 men. The two colossal forces clashed on November 10th 1833.

The plan of the Alliance forces, under the combined command of Prince Charles Bourbon of France, was to defend Leipzig and keep the Coalition forces divided. The Austrians were approaching from the east the Prussian/Rhineland force from the northwest. The Saxobavarians were to hold the city and delay the Austrians for as long as possible for the French to crush the northern force. The Coalition plan was, unsurprisingly the opposite. The two armies would seek to combine northeast of the city and then envelop and crush the Franco-Saxobavarian force. On the morning of the 10th the Saxobavarian and Austrian cannon began firing at each other as their armies manoeuvred and prepared for battle. The majority of the Austrian force deployed against the Saxons whilst a force of 35,000 continued northwest hoping to make contact with the Prusso-Rhineland forces under the Prussian Prince Frederick. The eastern part of the battle would be fierce and would drag on for hours. To the north the French had surprised the German forces, who had been expecting to meet Austrian allies not French enemies. Regardless Frederick adapted quickly and soon the battle was under-way. The land around the city was flat for the most part making ideal terrain for a battle, even one of this size. Throughout the day the two battles were fought almost independent of one another. By early evening however the French were driven back by the Prusso-Rhineland forces (now joined by the Austrian contingent) and were withdrawing towards Leipzig itself. The Saxobavarians, who had been holding their own against the Austrians, now moved west linking up with the French around the city, the two battles merged.

The Battle of Leipzig on the 10th:

The battle continued to rage in approximate stalemate throughout the 11th. After a brief lull over night the battle resumed early on the morning of the 12th. The Allied armies were slowly pushed back and the city itself came under attack from Prussian cannon. At around 10am the Austrians managed to break the Saxon centre and cut the Saxobavarians in half. The southern group managed to regroup in good order and keep up the fighting. The northern force now found itself surrounded on three sides by Austrians and Prussians with the city at its backs. By noon this force had been crushed and the survivors fled into Leipzig. The Prussians and Rhinelanders capitalised on this success and drove the French back before beginning an assault on Leipzig. The remaining Saxobavarian forces began to waver and the Austrians gained the upper hand. By around 2pm the battle was clearly going against the Allied forces. But then at around half past two on the 12th everything changed. Prince Charles had noticed a weak point in the Coalition lines. Attempting to simultaneously assault Leipzig and keep the French at bay the Prusso-Rhineland forces had overstretched themselves, leaving a gap in their centre. Charles knew this was his last chance to save the battle. In an act that would be immortalized in French art and literature for decades to come 20,000 French cavalry hurled themselves into this gap. Taking great casualties from cannon the French horse threw themselves into the weak point. The Prussians shattered. As French cavalry tore through their lines the Prussian forces lost all sense of order and structure. The Saxobavarians in the city, seeing what was happening, sortied out catching the Prussians in disarray. The Prussian army was now in full retreat. The Rhinelanders soon followed, in somewhat better order, as the French infantry turned on them and swept them from the field. The Austrians, now suddenly alone, attempted to withdraw eastward but suffered great casualties from the Allied pursuit. By 7o'clock it was all over. The French cavalry charge (resulting in the deaths of one in three of the men involved) had snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. The Prussian army was annihilated, the Rhinelanders broken, and the Austrians beaten. And around hundred and fifty thousand men were dead or dying on the fields outside Leipzig.

The Fourth Silesian War
Part VI: Endgame: The Closing Stages and the Madrid Congress

Leipzig decided how the war in Europe would end. In military terms the Battle of Five Armies won France the war in Germany. The League of the Rhine was the first to request peace. When word arrived of the defeat of their army in the east and with half of the League under French occupation the League requested an armistice in January of 1834. Hanover, which had been crushed beneath Prussian, Danish and Rhinelander armies surrendered on the same day. The war was now clearly winding itself down. Outside of Europe the war too entered its final stages. In India relatively inconclusive fighting had raged between Britain and France, as well as their respective clients. In early February of 1834 however the British and their allies won a major battle against French forces south of Bengal. In North America New England had finally acted. Irritated by French raids on their commercial shipping, the lifeblood of their economy, a New England expedition had sailed into the Caribbean and seized Saint Domingue, the staging ground for French maritime operations with small British assistance. The colony was taken and represented the first, but not the last, overseas territory for the Dominion.

In Europe the final stages of the war contained no great shocks and instead saw the wrapping up of the various Campaigns. The first three months of 1834 saw Sweden driven back in the west and east. Danish forces, now with naval superiority in the Baltic following Skagerrak, launched a twin invasion of western Sweden, one force moving down from Norway the other landed by sea. The campaign was a great success and, following continued Russian victories in the east, Sweden threw in the towel in March. The Poles followed suit after a battle outside Warsaw was won by the Austro-Prussian forces and the capital fell. The remaining Polish forces withdrew south and east continuing their fanatical resistance against the advancing Russians. Polish irregular forces had mounted a determined campaign against the invaders throughout the war. Austrian troops in Italy maintained their fight against the Franco-Sardinian army whilst nervously eying their nominal allies the pan-Italian republican forces to the south. The Prussians attempted to regroup following Leipzig. However the Austrians and Prussians, their German armies defeated, now both sent feelers to Paris asking for peace, their war aims in the east completed. The Russians had won great successes in both Poland and the north and were content for the war to end on favourable terms. Russian eyes now moved south as tensions in the Balkans were mounting. The British, seeing their continental allies drained and wishing to focus on domestic concerns as well as events outside Europe, approached France for peace. In France a minority, following Leipzig, believed the war could be won outright but the majority, and the king, realised that with their allies crumbling the best they could hope for was a negotiated peace using Leipzig as a bargaining chip. In May of 1834 the warring powers met in Madrid, capital of the Spanish Republic, to forge a peace.

Prussian forces near Warsaw, March 1834:

It was clear to the representatives of the participating states that two things were undeniable. Firstly the Coalition had won in the east. Poland and Sweden were overwhelmed and both nations lay at the mercies of the victorious powers, despite the ongoing skirmishes between the occupied and the occupiers. Secondly France was triumphant in Central Europe. France and its German allies, especially Saxony-Bavaria, had crushed the Coalition forces at Leipzig and the League was half occupied by French troops. Prussia was eager for peace seeking to make gains in Hanover and Poland whilst Vienna was eager to focus on the situation in Italy and, like the Russians, the Balkans. The two sides sought to create a peace, a lasting peace they hoped, that reflected these two developments. But were there actually only two sides in Madrid? Well pretty soon it became clear that this wasn't the truth; in fact there were three factions at the conference. The French delegation, led by Prince Charles (victor of Leipzig) led the wartime Alliance faction. The Coalition, or most of it, was led primarily by the British Earl of Liverpool and Archduke Leopold of Austria-Hungary. However after only a few days of negotiation it became clear that there was a third party that was pursuing its own interests apart from the other two, and that of course was Russia. Prince Nicholas (Nikolay), brother to the Tsar, was the leader of the Russian delegation which soon found itself isolated in the conference and quickly abandoned any loyalty to the Coalition and sought to find the best deal for Russia. Disagreements with the other Coalition partners led the Russians to believe they were being ostracised and they consequently began to drift apart from the Coalition, (there were even rumours that secretly Russia and France had discussed signing an alliance against the Coalition if negotiations went south).

The three factions argued and negotiated for months. Some issues were resolved fairly easily. Holstein was ceded to Denmark, as were various parts of Sweden on which it had claim. Scandia, Halland and a few other pieces were given to the Danes. Gotland, the strategic island in the eastern Baltic, which had been conquered by the Danes, was made an independent kingdom ruled by a member of the Danish royal family and was in effect a Danish protectorate. Poland was forced to drop its claims on Silesia, which after all had been the cause of the whole war. Baden was ceded to France, this was unopposed even by Austria and Prussia as by now the French had effectively integrated the German state and seemed unlikely to leave. Hanover was to be divided between Denmark, Prussia and the League, representing the only major wartime success for the Coalition in Germany. There was however discussion on how to divide the country. Prussia sliced off a large part of Hanover in the east. Lying completely on the North European Plain Hanover had little to no terrain defences and this made absorbing it easier for the victorious powers. The League took a bit in the west. Hamburg became the key as both Denmark and the League wanted the city, which was currently occupied by Britain. As negotiations wore on no agreement seemed to be in sight. Austria even suggested that Britain maintain control over the city as a compromise, which was rejected by Denmark and the League, and Britain as a matter of fact. In the end the Danes decided that they weren't going to win out and offered a compromise. Hamburg is ceded to Denmark, who in turn would sell it to the League. The League gets the city and Denmark gets a large amount of money to pay off war expenditure. This was accepted by the other states and Hamburg and the surrounding area was added as new League member. Although it had previously been agreed that Hanover should be completely carved up, the League and Danes both now (united on this point now that Hamburg had been resolved) proposed the idea of keeping it alive, a buffer between them and the Prussians (not that they phrased it that way). The Prussians did not object as they were unlikely to gain the land being discussed and saw it in turn as a shield against western attack, primarily from France. A rump Hanover was allowed to exist and the three powers (Prussia, Denmark and the League) agreed that none of them would seek to absorb Hanover through aggression without first consulting with the other two. Other issues however proved tougher to resolve.

An artist's depiction of the Madrid Congress discussing the fate of Poland:

It was over Poland that most of the negotiations were spent. The Russians had pushed for Poland to be completely partitioned between themselves, Berlin and Vienna. The French objected, citing dynastic ties (the proposed Franco-Russian alliance fizzled on this issue) The British were wary of increasing Russian power too greatly and also voiced objections; not to mention the several thousand Poles still under arms that someone would have to tell were now stateless. The biggest proponents of a continued Polish state were, ironically enough, Prussia and Austria-Hungary. Both had been shocked and concerned by the sheer size of the Russian forces in Poland, and impressed in spite of themselves by the Russian forces quick ability to adapt and their successes in the war. Neither Prussia or Austria wanted to replace a defeated Poland on their border with a triumphant powerful Russia. It was over this issue that Russia and the Coalition fell out; most publicly with Nicholas and Leopold having a major argument in the conference. In the end the Russians backed down. Russian diplomats had been quietly made aware that Prussia and Austria-Hungary were now, almost laughably, prepared to fight to defend Poland from the Russians (negotiations with France were immediately started up again behind the scenes, though by now the French had soured on the deal). St. Petersburg was not willing to risk war with the Coalition. The final decision on this matter saw Posen ceded to Prussia, Galicia to Austria-Hungary and Courland, most of Ruthenia and a slab of eastern Poland given to Russia. Poland, though greatly reduced in size, power and prestige, remained. Denied in Poland the Russians were in no mood to compromise in the north, and no-one was willing to risk war for Sweden. Karelia, Kola and Finland were ceded in their entirety to Russia and the Swedish were forced to pay reparations to Russia. Madrid marked the end for Sweden as a great power and as a major actor on the European stage. With Poland sorted other issues soon fell into place. Trier (removed from the League) and the Palatinate were made French protectorates. Saxony-Bavaria absorbed Swabia and parts of Wurzburg and in turn ceded land to Austria and Prussia. The three independent German states in the south (Hesseia, Wurzburg and Wurttemberg) signed an alliance wary of being surrounded by Paris and Munich. The Aragonese inheritance of Sicily was also recognised. A few territorial changes took place in India and Africa in Britain's favour as well as despite success on the continent France had been beaten elsewhere (though North America saw no territorial changes as this theatre had remained fairly static). The powers were unsure on what to do with Italy though with both France and Austria concerned about the nationalist republican movement there, however this decision was taken out of their hands when on June 9th 1834 the republican representatives of Tuscany, Modena, Lucca and Naples declared the unified Italian Republic in Florence. Leaving a rump Papacy in Rome (to not antagonize France) as well as Piedmonte in Sardinian hands (with a few bits of land going to Italy and Austria) and Venetia in Austrian. In August 1834 the Madrid Congress signed the peace treaty that ended the Fourth Silesian War and changed Europe forever.


Kings and Sultans: The Rest of the World 1805-1850

The Subcontinent
India: 1805-1850

In 1805 Great Britain and France made peace ending the Revolutionary Wars that had waged not only in Europe and the Americas but in India as well. The treaty created a new balance of power on the subcontinent. Britain was still, arguably, the region's strongest power. The Royal Navy based out of Bombay controlled the seas giving the British a key advantage. British power though was centred in Bengal. In the early years of the 19th Century Britain had increased its control over this territory. The French had been evicted from the region and the Ganges Delta was firmly British. Calcutta and Dacca had become wealthy and sprawling metropolises. The Governor-General, in charge of British India, based in Calcutta had become the supreme authority in Bengal. The influx of a new ruling class of Britons naturally caused some resentment amongst the natives. Two risings occurred against the British in Bengal (in 1814 and then a larger rebellion in 1830-1), but both were eventually defeated. These revolts however were to have an effect on the British way of ruling in India. Worried that another rising may receive support from another power (Delhi perhaps or even worse France) the British took steps to accommodate the locals. Indian elites were accepted into positions of power in Bengal (to an extent), important Bengalis were offered opportunities to go study in Britain and the Bengali people (especially those serving in the British army) were treated better, given better opportunities for social advancement and for the soldiers better pay. This new approach, pioneered by Governor Thomas Wellesley (Governor-General from 1833 to 1845), was successful in placating the Bengali people and strengthening Britain's grasp on the region.

Delhi had broken free from the collapsing Maratha rule at the closing stages of the Age of Revolutions. Since then the city's rulers had not been idle. Delhi had carved itself out a huge kingdom in the northwest of India. From 1807 to 1811 Delhi waged a series of campaigns under its king, Muhammad Ajit, along the Indus Valley. This region had been ruled by a collection of competing states following the fall of the Mughals. Ajit gradually brought these petty kingdoms into line crushing the last (Multan) in August of 1811. Ajit then turned his attention to the north, to Lahore. This city had fallen to a nomadic group invading from Afghanistan during the chaos of the early 1800s. Ajit's armies fought a grueling war lasting nearly four years but eventually expelled the Afghans. For the next two decades Ajit's rule was peaceful, with the brief exception of the first of many border wars with Persia (1824-5). The wars of the early years had nearly bankrupted the kingdom. To rectify this the king launched a series of economic reforms, increased taxes, crushed dissent inside the kingdom and centralised control in Delhi, new wealth was generated from the growing trade between Delhi and its neighbours, as well as from within the kingdom itself. As the money began to pour in a programme was launched to expand the city of Delhi. New monuments were erected including a grand new palace. But the greatest work of all was the Grand Mosque. Ajit, a devout Muslim, ordered the construction of this magnificent structure (rivaling the Taj Mahal) in 1831. Unfortunately he died in 1837 and did not live to see its completion, for his conquests and efforts to forge a new empire in India he was given the honorific "the Great" on his death. His son however continued the work his father had begun, completing the project in 1849. Like his father, Muhammed Ajit II (or simply Muhammad II) was a religious man, though his dedication led his enemies to dub him a fanatic. Sunni Islam became the state religion of the empire and heretics were either killed or exiled. Religious wars within the kingdom were waged with great ferocity in the period from 1841 to 1845. The worst of these was the Malwa War (1842-44) where Hindu rebels allied with the neighbouring Kingdom of Nagpur and fought against Delhi, though were eventually defeated. By 1850 this great kingdom, known as the Second Delhi Sultanate, was the most populous and richest of the Indian kingdoms, almost completely Muslim, and a true rival to the European powers in the region.

A depiction of Muhammad Ajit I, or Ajit the Great:

The Kingdoms of Nagpur, Orissa and Baroda were the other successor states to the Marathas. Although all had originally been British allies, Nagpur gradually removed itself from Britain's sphere becoming in time a fiercely anti-European state in the heart of the subcontinent. Ruled over by a series of kings of the Mahesha Dynasty (originally a family of ambitious warriors they took the name Mahesha, meaning lord or ruler, on kingship) Nagpur forged itself into a powerful militaristic kingdom. Nagpur waged a series of wars in the first half of the 19th Century. From 1821 to 1825 it fought the Kingdom of Baroda to a standstill. Although the larger of the two kingdoms Nagpur was unable to overcome the Barodans who were receiving large amounts of aid from the British. Nagpur tried again in the early 1830s, this time against Orissa. Here they were more successful forcing the British to directly intervene on behalf of their ally, the British and Orissans eventually defeating the then king of Nagpur Rajmata in 1835. The final conflict in this period was Nagpur's intervention in the religious wars in the Delhi Sultanate in the Malwa War, which also ended poorly. These string of defeats fatally weakened the Mahesha family and their grip over the country weakened considerably. The Nagpur attacks on Orissa and Baroda actually helped the British. These two states, both coastal and relatively wealthy kingdoms, were reliant on Britain during the fighting and once peace was made the British stayed, their influence increasing. By playing off local nobles and the monarch against each other the British had masterfully turned both states form allies to puppets by the mid point of the century.

The Kingdom of Mysore was the last native state in the subcontinent. Mysore had managed to stay independent during the previous century. It had fought wars against France in the past and had managed to, with help from Britain, keep the French at bay. Unlike Baroda and Orissa, Mysore was very much a British ally, not a puppet. The kingdom had grown rich on trade with Britain as well as with the Dutch on Ceylon (itself growing wealthy at the heart of the Dutch Indian Ocean empire) and the Portuguese in Goa. Whilst remaining very much an Indian state, Mysore's military and government became increasingly European. By 1850 Mysore was the most advanced of the Indian realms and it became a major maritime trading power even establishing bases in east Africa and in the East Indies. The French had been beaten in India both in the Revolutionary Wars and in the Fourth Silesian War. They had not however been forced out. These defeats showed the French that, unable to master the seas, their holdings in southern India were vulnerable. So the French began to turn their Indian territory into an increasingly independent and self-reliant state. Pondicherry became the centre of French power in India. This city was ruled by the so-called Prince in India, who was indeed a relative of the French king. Loyal to Paris these lands developed a unique Franco-Indian culture as the two people's intermixed and indeed intermarried and it soon became difficult to distinguish between ruler and ruled. By the century's mid point French India was for all intents and purposes its own state, more a Dominion of France than a colony.


The United Provinces of América
Part I: Nation Building

The UPA had won its independence from Spain during the Age of Revolutions. On October 1st 1796 the constitution of the UPA had been crafted and the new state was born, though years of fighting against Spain and Spanish loyalists followed. The early years of the UPA were dominated by two main issues: forging a nation and defeating the loyalists. The first was to prove the more troublesome. The government in Mexico City was divided between two political parties, the Federalists and the Provincialists. Each had its own view on how the UPA should be formed and indeed what type of nation it should be. The Federalists had argued in the beginning for a strong central government. They had been outvoted however and the Provincialists got their way. The United Provinces was divided between regions, each with autonomous government, all supposed to follow the lead of the capital. In 1811 the first real test of the nation occurred when a rebellion broke out in the northwest. Spanish loyalists had attempted to break off from the UPA. The Arizpe Rebellion was fought from 1811-1813. The rebels were a better motivated and better led force while the Américan government struggled to get the men needed to combat the rising due to difficulty in getting the regions to commit men and funding. Eventually however the government won out and the rebels were crushed. This conflict however highlighted the problems with the constitutional structure of the state, leading to political power swinging, slightly, to the Federalists.

The UPA was a parliamentary state. Elections, done every five years, were held for regional and national governments. The first election had been held in 1798, which was easily won by the Provincialists, while the war time government of the previous years had been a coalition led by Federalist leader Ignacio Allende, a figure revered by both sides. The Provincialists were to go on to win the elections in 1803, 1808 and 1813. This fifteen period of power had led to a developing level of corruption and complacency within the government and a spoils system taking effect. Ironically, too long in national power, the Provincialists had begun to neglect the provinces themselves, they key to their support. In the 1818 election several major provincial elections went to the Federalists who also managed to take control of the national government, the first time they were in power since the war-time coalition. Winning the election did not give them the power to radically change the nation's structure however, as their majority in Mexico City was small and over half the provinces were still in Provincialist hands. All key decisions had to be approved by the regional governments, meaning the five years the Federalists were in power were a constant struggle between provinces and the capital. In 1818 the Provincialists were returned to national power, albeit by a hair.

Ignacio Allende, first Prime Minister of the UPA:

These five years however were focused on other things. Primarily events to the north in Louisiana were watched with concern. The fall of the republic and the rise of Bonaparte led to a crackdown in the UPA by the government on anyone suspected of rebel inclination. As Bonaparte went on to defeat the Confederacy many in Mexico City worried that they were next. The War Powers act was drafted that eroded some of the rights the provinces had and made it easier for the central government, in times of war, to override the regional governments. The passing of the War Powers, which was only achieved due to Federalist backing, act split the Provincialists. Around a third of their party voted against the bill and split off to form a third party who became known as the Liberals (they opposed central government, argued for middle class advancement, business friendly government and a reformed judicial system). As the CAS was crushed by Louisiana the UPA reached out to Britain for help in their military reforms, which the British were happy to do, themselves growing concerned about Bonaparte. In 1823 the Federalists regained office defeating the Provincialists and Liberals. 1823 to 1828 was a peaceful time for the UPA. The Louisianans had stopped their wars in the north and the government in Mexico City was able to relax. This period was focussed on internal development. New infrastructure was developed as a great road building plan was put in action to tie together the huge nation, the Federalists hoping that by tying the nation together central control could be more easily enforced. The chief achievement in this endeavour was the Veracruz Railroad. Veracruz had become a major commerical hub and, with British assistance, a railroad was laid connecting it to the capital. This took four years and wasn't finished until 1829. Immigration to the UPA, primarily from Iberia but also from elsewhere in Europe (escaping the wars on the continent and wishing to avoid the conflicts elsewhere in the Americas). It is estimated that between 1820 and 1835 roughly half a million people emigrated to the UPA. This was a great economic boon to the country and also resulted in the growth of new major urban centres, specifically Los Angeles, San Fernando, Seville and Monterrey.

The immigration issue was however to provide one major negative. In 1828 the Provincialists regained national office, as the Federalists were hindered by internal party fighting. The Provincialists passed a new bill giving increased powers to the regions on the issue of immigration. How many to take in, where to settle them etc. A response to the call from many coastal provinces that they could manage things better themselves away from the capital on the ground. This proved not to be a significant problem except in Tejas. Tejas was the border region with Louisiana and it was awash with immigrants from the Louisianan Empire over the border as well as from northern Europe, New England and the CAS. In 1830 fighting broke out in the province between immigrants and Américans who were resentful of the continuing flood of immigration. This tide of immigration was advocated by the provincial government which itself was controlled by a collection of Louisianan and English-speaking immigrants. Fighting soon began to escalate as the provincial government began to grow restless and was unwilling to use force against either side, despite pro-immigrant leanings. Mexico City refused to send troops citing the violence as a concern for the provincial government, centred in Seville. The Federalist opposition was outraged, demanding the government send men to deal with the issue lest it become a major crisis. Eventually the Provincialists caved in and sent a force to end the bloodshed. Unfortunately this was too little too late. The small government force was unable to stem the violence and its increasingly desperate tactics to do so incited more Tejans to rise up. By 1831 it was clear that a major rebellion was underway. In July 1831 a larger Américan force crossed the Rio Grande into Tejas where it was defeated by a rebel army, which was equipped with Louisianan weapons. Following the defeat the UPA government declared a national emergency and began raising a larger army and declared Tejas to be in a state of unlawful rebellion and ordered the rebels to stand down. The rebels had something else in mind and in September at a fiery meeting in Seville the provincial government declared independence as the Republic of Tejas (the declaration was written in French, Spanish and English). Louisiana recognised the Republic soon after. Fighting continued to wage for the rest of the year but in 1832 an Américan force crushed a rebel army and moved onto Seville. Here though they were met not just by rebels but a Louisianan force sent by New Orleans. The Battle of Seville was a crushing defeat for the UPA. In Mexico City the Provincialist government was collapsing. Rebel sentiments were beginning to stir in other parts of the country and defections to the Liberals were rising, meanwhile the Federalists were calling for snap elections. Hoping to save face and buy time to deal with other issues Mexico City offered peace to Tejas, knowing that they stood no chance in their current state against the rebels and the Empire. New Orleans and Seville accepted the offer.

The Federalists were furious. The 1833 election was the most bitterly fought in the nation's history. Federalists accused the Provincialists of cowardice and incompotence. The Provincialists hit back at the Federalists calling their strong central state beliefs “Bonapartist”. The Federalists campaigned on a promise to restore the nation's pride and make secession illegal, paving way for a new constitutional structure. A few days before the election a collection of southern regional governments (where rebellion was brewing and Provincialist loyalties were strongest) announced they could not accept a Federalist victory as it would violate provincial rights and they would not tolerate the “Northerner” Alejandro Fox (the Californian born Federalist leader) as Prime Minister. On March 9th 1833 the Federalists won the national election. The Provincialists claimed election fraud and anti-Federalist militias began forming as the southern regions declared they would not accept a “tyrannical Federalist regime” and rose up in rebellion. The Américan Civil War had begun.

The United Provinces of América
Part II: Civil War

The Américan Civil War began in March of 1833 following the triumph of the Federalists in the national election. Six southern provinces (Guatemala, Panama, Southern Mexico, Valladolid. Oaxaca and Honduras) had rebelled against the Federalist government in Mexico City and had begun calling up their individual militias. In the north of the UPA, Provincialist rebels had risen up in Lower and Upper California as well as further south in Arizpe province. The new Federalist government immediately found themselves in a crisis. The government began gathering its own forces, those provincial militias loyal to them. The Américan Army split, around two thirds stayed loyal to the government whilst the remainder (mainly those deployed in the south and Californias) went over to the rebels. The first clash of the Civil War was the Battle of San Francisco on April 4th 1833. Garrisoned by loyalists the city was assaulted by renegade army units. The city was held as the defenders were backed up by the guns of the Américan navy (which remained almost entirely with the Federalist government) in the San Francisco Bay forcing the attackers back. Hopes for a peaceful solution evaporated however at Fort Santiago a week later. Fort Santiago was a coastal stronghold in eastern Honduras whose garrison had remained loyal to Mexico City. Rebels fired on the fort and stormed in a bloody assault. This attack, the first launched by the southern formal rebel provinces, was seen by many as the tipping point; now the dispute could only be settled through war.

The early months of the Civil War saw a variety of skirmishes and raids as both sides collected and gathered their forces. The Federalists were distracted by the increasingly troublesome rebel activities in the north whilst raids, primarily for cattle, across the border from the recently independent Republic of Tejas were a constant concern. The six rebel provinces of the south meanwhile were attempting to form a common government to run the war effort. Meeting in Guatemala City the rebel leaders decided that to conduct the war effectively they would need to form a government in exile. They were divided however on what course to take, some argued that they were simply there to overthrow the Federalist government others argued for complete secession. The argument was tipped when word arrived that in the capital the Federalists had outlawed the Provincialist Party as rebels (the Liberal Party had split early in the war with most going to the rebels meaning the Federalists were in effect the only party in the loyalist areas). This declaration pushed the rebel leaders to announce they were seceding from the UPA as peaceful coexistence with the Federalists was now deemed impossible. Taking their name from the (claimed) capital of their new nation the rebels announced the creation of the Mexican Confederacy on May 9th 1833; the conflict had now formally split the UPA. The new Mexican Army immediately launched an assault aimed at capturing the capital. The Federalist (or as they can now be called Américan) forces met them a few miles south where the Mexicans achieved a crushing victory. Panic set in in Mexico City and the Américan government began to flee the capital, the Mexicans entered Mexico City a few days later.

The flag of the Mexican Confederacy. Red and white were the colours of the UPA flag. The green is the colour of the Provincialist party. The cross (red on white) is inspired by the old colonial flag of New Spain. There are seven stars, one for each of the original provinces that seceded and one for the capital at Mexico City:

The fall of Mexico City was the critical moment of the early stages of the Civil War. The Américan government fled and regrouped at Durango. The capture of the capital was a boost for the Mexican Confederacy who now sought international recognition and prepared to move on the critical port of Veracruz. The Californian rebels were encouraged and, avoiding the hostile coast, launched a campaign to gain control of the interior of the northern part of the country. In Durango there was great argument and discussion on what to do. On the war effort many favoured negotiations with the Californian rebels and then concentrating on defeating the Mexican forces. Others argued that the Californians should be crushed and the rebellious southern provinces should be let go. There was also debate on the future of the UPA. The secession of the Mexican Confederacy caused many Federalists to believe that the time was ripe to abolish the hated old constitution (with its hated provincial and confederate nature) and bring forth a more centralised and united state. This view won out. Consequently, once and for all casting aside the old nation and system, the Durango government declared, with the name Mexican stolen by the rebels and the namesake city in their hands, the Américan Republic on August 11th 1833. The United Provinces had now ceased to exist. To add to the dissolution of the old state the Californian rebels announced their own independent republic in the city of San Angelo a week later.

Map of the Civil War situation at the beginning of 1834:

The Américan government now began to reassert its control over what was still under their control. The provincial capitals were brought into line and a new programme was launched to raise and train a new army. The war in the south dragged on. Mexican forces attempted to move north to exploit this success but their advance was checked at the Battle of Alicante. Veracruz came under siege in December of 1833. This city, the most important port in the country, was heavily fortified and well defended. Lacking any naval capability the Mexicans were unable to prevent supplies being ferried into the city by the Américan Navy. The Californian theatre on the other hand was a lively and dynamic conflict. The nascent Californian Republic struggled against the Américan forces. Outnumbered nearly 3 to 1 the Californian army was gradually pushed back. There were two factors benefiting the Californians however. Firstly it was their land. They knew the terrain well and were (after decades of skirmishes with Natives) experienced guerilla fighters. Secondly rising tensions with Tejas and the Louisianan Empire forced the Américan Republic to divert some of its troops from this campaign to strengthen their garrisons there. San Francisco was the focal point of the Californian war effort. This city was a strategic hub (sort of the northern version of Veracruz). The area however was controlled by Américan forces who fought a brilliant campaign. Again the control of the seas allowed the Durango government to reinforce the otherwise isolated front. In May of 1834 an overeager Tejan forces crossed the Rio Grande in a cattle raid. The raiders were, unfortunately for them, wiped out by an Américan force. Fearful of retaliatory raids Tejan President, Thomas McCauley, opened negotiations with Durango in which they formally recognised the Américan government as the legitimate successor to the UPA and promised to prevent any further raids, provided the Américan government confirmed that they, like their predecessors, recognised the sovereignty of Tejas. This deal was accepted by Durango. Louisiana too was having troubles of its own and tensions fell. Freed from these concerns Américan forces now re-concentrated their efforts in the north (under the recently adopted California First plan) and began to steadily defeat the rebels here.

Flag of the Américan Republic. Drawing on the red and white of the UPA flag this takes the original colours and sets them in a horizontal tricolour (vertical is too Louisianan). The blue was added symbolizing a new birth, the white the old heritage and red the blood split to get from one to the other:

The Battle of Veracruz was one of the war's most important battles. This city had been under siege by the Mexicans since December 1833. The Américan navy however managed to keep the city supplied and the big guns of the ships kept the city fighting. In mid-1834 the Durango government decided to attempt to break the siege of the city. An army of 30,000 men was sent to relieve the city and battle against a similar sized Mexican army. The Américan forces achieved a decisive victory. The Américan triumph had three main consequences: firstly it represented the first major success for the Américans against Mexican forces, secondly the city was now once more open to trade and the wealth it generated would go along way to financing the war effort, thirdly was the effect on Britain. The British had long been allies of the UPA, helping them gain their independence. When Civil War broke out the British had backed the Américans, seeing them as the legitimate successors, but had been hesitant to outright declare for either, especially with their focus on the Madrid Congress in Europe. After Veracruz however the British felt confident to officially recognise the Américan Republic as the only legitimate UPA successor (though Tejan independence, being recognised by the UPA before the Civil War was undisputed) and began giving arms and funds to the Américans. This recognition also meant that the British would respond aggressively to any other nation backing the Mexicans. France and the Spanish Republic had (separately) been quietly backing the Mexicans eager to gain some influence in Central America. Following the British recognition both sides stopped. Madrid was unwilling to upset their British ally (their best guarantor against France) whilst the French lacked the naval strength (following Skagerrak) to dispute with the British in the Caribbean.

The war would drag on however. The Américans, now with the undeniably stronger position, eventually crushed Californian resistance in early 1835 taking their “capital” at San Angelo. Freed from this front Américan forces were redistributed south. It is important to note that the movement of troops from the Californian theatre to Mexico was facilitated by the infant railroad system in the country, a product of the Federalist governments (a fact not lost on other nations). Mexico City was retaken by the Américans in March of 1835. Following the fall of the capital negotiations began between América and the Mayan province of Yucatan. Originally favouring the Mexican cause Yucatan had never fully declared from either side. With the war going against the Confederacy the Américan government wanted to bring this traditionally autonomous province in line, knowing that antagonizing them could make the war much more difficult. In May 1835 Yucatan negotiated entry into the Américan Republic managing to maintain a degree of autonomy unique in the new country (a contested but grudgingly accepted deal for the Federalist government). The Mexicans meanwhile, seeing the tide going against them, opted for what was hoped to be a knock out blow. A Mexican army, some 40,000 strong, invaded the Republic attempting to come in round behind Mexico City cutting it, and the relocated Américan government, off from the rest of the country. The invasion won two small battles in the early days but soon found itself confronted by an Américan army of 33,000 men which was standing in the way to the capital. The Battle of Getaffe was fought from July 5th 1835. The fatal moment coming when a Mexican infantry charge was repulsed along a fence in the centre of the battlefield which saw the Américans gain the upper hand eventually crushing the invaders. Getafe marked the end for the Confederacy. The war finally ended in February 1836 when the last Mexican army, down near Panama, surrendered to the advancing Américans.

The Mexican Confederacy was reabsorbed into the
Américan Republic. The leaders of the rebellion were either hung or imprisoned, a similar fate awaited the leaders of the Californian uprising. The next twenty years are known as the “Reconstruction”. The Américan Republic had reunited all the lands of the old UPA (minus Tejas). Mexico City, badly damaged during the war, was steadily rebuilt and expanded. The provinces of the former Mexican Confederacy were under military occupation for the following years (the last occupation ending in 1842 in Guatemala). A new constitution kept the old provinces and their provincial governments, whilst dramatically reducing their power. A new electoral system was created. The Senate would continue to be elected as always. Now though, in keeping with their view of a strong government, a President would then be elected separately with strong executive powers for a six-year term, one term only. Parts of the country had been seriously damaged during the war. With financial assistance from Britain, New England and Spain, the Américan Republic would rebuild from the Civil War. Seeing the importance of rail-roads the government was to make this the centre point of the next few years. By 1850 América had more miles of rail than any other country in the Americas. The Federalists would be dominant in political power for the rest of this period but by the mid-point of the century a new Populist party (strong with rural populations, pro-agriculture, isolationist and more provincial minded, though not close to the same scale the Provincialists had been) would emerge to challenge them. Unified and rebuilt the Américan Republic would begin to now emerge as one of the great powers on the world stage.

A New World?
South America 1800-1850

“This place was named the New World. As I look around this continent, a land that is bloodied by rebellion, war, territorial and dynastic struggles I ask myself is this any different from the Old? Did we really leave Europe behind or have we simply recreated it half a world away?”- José Santiago, First President of Peru. 1849

The United Provinces of New Granada (UPNG) were formally established as an independent nation at the Treaty of Paris in 1805, though they had been a de facto sovereign state since 1801. Unlike the rising in the UPA to the north the New Granadan rebellion was more contested. Inspired by the wars of liberation in Louisiana and the UPA Granadan revolutionaries had risen in Cartagena. Though they were soon supported by large amounts of the population a sizable minority (estimated between 30-35%) remained loyal to the Spanish crown. It was only the military and financial support of the UPA and Britain (and to a lesser extent Portugal) combined with the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War that allowed the Granadan uprising to succeed. This loyalist minority however would prove to be a problem in the early years of the nation. Three times (1804, 1807 and 1810) a counter-revolution broke out against the Granadan government in Cartegena. After the failure of the last in 1810 this loyalist force was spent, the division between republicans loyal to Madrid and monarchists to Barcelona prevented effective co-operation and after this final failed effort many simply accepted there was no going back or alternatively emigrated south to Spanish Peru or north to Cuba. The transfer of peoples between Peru and New Granada exacerbated a series of disputed land claims that escalated into war between the Spanish Republic and New Granada from 1813-1815. Despite Spanish dominance at sea the war on land was inconclusive. A division of claims that was fairly equal eventually went through settling the dispute for the time being.

New Granadan soldiers fighting against Spain/Peru, 1814:

Once the troubles of the initial years were dealt with New Granada went through a few decades of nation building. Cartegena, birthplace of the rising, was established as the nation's capital. Fearing that a federal system akin to the UPA would foster separatism and regionalism, as indeed proved to be the case in the UPA, the New Granadan founders outlined a more centralised state with authority resting solely in the capital under a President voted upon by an elected Congress. Political parties failed to fully come into force here due to a widespread variety of influences, beliefs and regional foci and instead political factions were more common, loyalties and defections provided for a constant flux of groupings and allegiances, usually determined by whatever issue was the main focus of the time. Though this resulted in relatively week governments it allowed greater room for compromise without party bickering and partisan loyalties. It is worth noting that unlike in the UPA or Louisiana there was not universal male suffrage in New Granada. In the UPNG the right to vote was only given to the land-owning elite (those Spanish who had stayed and the lucky ones who had stolen the land from the Spaniards who had left). In 1829 the voting franchise was extended to a variety of other classes, such as merchants, businessman, industrialists, though this still represented only around twenty to thirty percent of the male population in the country. Slavery was abolished formally in 1830 as well. The new non-land owning politicians were less determined to maintain the tradition and with slavery abolished in most New World countries by this point, and under international pressure to do so, Cartegena followed suit. In the late 1820s early 1830s France began to play a greater role in the country. To the north the UPA was a British ally so the French, and Spanish, courted the UPNG. French and Spanish investment flowed into the country. In fact following the loss of Saint-Domingue to New England in the Fourth Silesian War, France's only real presence in the New World south of Quebec became in New Granada. When the Américan Civil War broke out in 1833 there were many in Cartegena who advocated intervention to gain complete control of disputed Panama, others wanted to recognise the Mexican Confederacy and undermine their northern neighbour. In the end the country was unable to do either as it was itself to be plagued by a series of conflicts. From 1834 to 1839 New Granada would be ravaged by a combination of Civil War and independence movements. Starting with a Venezuelan declaration of independence in Angostura a war of independence was fought lasting five years eventually ending in Venezuelan defeat. The war overlapped with a civil war in the UPNG itself between a reactionary conservative group supported by the army and peasantry called the Hawks (after their chosen symbol) and a more revolutionary orientated alliance of liberals and the middle class known as the Jaguars. Also an uprising by the remaining native population began near the border with Brasil that found itself fighting everyone and anyone before collapsing around 1838. The conflict between Hawk an Jaguar was eventually won by the Hawks who were backed by France and Spain. The British had initially supported the Venezuelan rebellion but had been unable to devote enough resources to the region with their forces already involved in América and Asia. The leader of the Hawks was General Juan Antonio who was declared President in August 1839. In February of the next year he initiated a political coup claiming that their was a left-wing rising imminent and assumed dictatorial powers. In 1841 he had himself declared king and turned New Granada into a kingdom. An anti-monarchist rising was put down in the southern part of the country by the veteran New Granadan army. King Juan I was a great admirer of France and imported much from the country, indeed it was said that King Juan spoke French more often than Spanish. In return for their support in the wars of the 1830s the French were allowed to establish a permanent naval base in Cumana. The transition into a monarchy would benefit the country in the upcoming years however. The stable rule it allowed for and the gradual transition into a more constitutional structure begun by Juan Antonio's son Francisco (became king in 1850) would allow for the Kingdom of New Granada to become a strong regional power in the coming years.

Peru. The last bastion of Spanish rule in South America. Following the collapse of colonial rule further north during the Age of Revolutions, Peru had served as the base and rallying point for those loyal to Spain. The breakaway of the Kingdom of La Plata to the south under King Ferdinand had further reduced the remaining lands answering to Madrid. Unlike in New Granada where the Spanish loyalists had been divided between monarchists and republicans in Peru the population was overwhelmingly on the side of the republic in Madrid, not the king in Barcelona. Perhaps it was the active effort of the Republican regime to win over the area or the animosity towards their monarchist southern neighbour but either way the republican spirit was live and well in Peru. The biggest test in the early years was the war with New Granada (1813-15) that resulted in an effective stalemate and let to a tense relationship with Cartegena. Seeing that direct management was impossible during the war however Madrid passed the Peru Act (1817) granting a respectable level of autonomy to the government in Lima over internal and commercial affairs. Tensions with various native groups plagued efforts to develop the territory but most agitators were subdued by 1823/4. Relations with La Plata continue to sour and war erupted between Spain and La Plata twice in the decade (1822-1823 and 1827-1829). Conflicting territorial claims between Peru and La Plata were the primary causes of the conflicts. The first war resulted in the return to status quo but in the second Spanish and Peruvian forces managed to win several key engagements as well as blockading large swathes of the La Platan east coast. Indeed the Las Malvinas islands were seized by Spain and a port (St. Juan) was established on the eastern island to serve as a forward base to maintain the naval campaign. The resulting Treaty of New Orleans settled claims in Peru's favour. The next ten years were a peaceful time for Peru as immigration and urbanization continued at a steady pace. Anti-Spanish sentiment was starting to brew however as many agitated for outright independence and the end to Madrid's meddling, especially on Spanish enforced tariffs hurting Peruvian trade.

Brasil had been directly incorporated into Portugal by Prince-Regent John in 1798. Making Brasil an equal to Portugal. He also established the precedence of the heir to the Portugese throne taking the title of Prince of Brazil and being based in Rio de Janeiro presiding over the Brasilian parliament there. This system proved very successful. Having a royal in both halves of the country as well as providing Brasil with its own parliament (obviously subservient to Lisbon) allowed for balance in the union. As Portugal focused on expanding its colonial influence in Africa, India and Asia, Brasil was left able to manage events and priorities in its own territory. Maria I died in 1814 and was succeeded by John who set off to Lisbon. His eldest son, Francisco, who now became Prince of Brasil. Under Francisco's stewardship Brasil became a rising power in South America. Immigration from Europe, primarily Portugal, Spain, Aragon and Italy, saw the population rise considerably during this period. Unlike its neighbours Brasil had not waged a costly war of independence and consequently was able to develop peacefully from a strong starting position. Rio, Brasil's capital, became the largest and wealthiest city in South America. São Paulo emerged as Brasil's second city further south. São Paulo's importance was based largely on its proximity the important port of Santos which served as a naval port for the navy as well as a stopping point for Portuguese ship heading east. The large dockyards constructed for this purpose served the city well as it became a maritime hub in the south Atlantic. Things weren't all rosy for Brasil however. In 1821 a large slave rebellion occurred in the north followed by an even larger one in 1831 near Pará inspired no doubt by abolition in neighbouring New Granada. Francisco, after consulting with the parliament in Rio and his father in Lisbon, abolished slavery in 1832. This was a major step for Brasil as it led to a transition from a slave based economy to a more modern commercial and industrial power. This shift however was not easy and from 1831-4 the country suffered from a severe economic depression as well as discontent from the former slave-owning elite. In 1833 however Francisco was able to distract from these events with a war against La Plata. Like elsewhere on the continent old colonial borders and claims led to conflicting ideas on where borders should lie. In 1833 the First Cisplatine War began when the government in Buenos Aires declared the whole region to be rightfully belonging to La Plata and began evicting Brasilian settlers, clearly designed a way for that government to restore some national pride and make up for the defeats to Spain/Peru in the 1820s. Well it went poorly. From 1833-35 La Plata and Brasil (with Portuguese naval assistance) fought over the area with the war being decided by a Brasilian victory at the Battle of Salto, the resulting peace gave Brasil control over most of the disputed area. In 1836 John died and Francisco became King in Lisbon. In Brasil he was succeeded by his daughter Isabel. The succession of Isabel could have been an explosive issue as many wanted Francisco's younger son Manuel to succeed. Fortunately (though unfortunately for Manuel) he died a week before his father. Isabel then became Princess of Brasil. Though in Brasilian history she is also known by many other names: The Lady of Brasil, the Warrior Princess and Isabel the Great.

Francisco, Prince of Brasil:

Under Isabel's rule Brasil would go from the major South American power to the dominant one. Showing an apt hand for politics she outmanoeuvred, coerced and flattered her political opponents into becoming some of her fiercest supporters. She made great efforts to travel across the large territory and won over much of the population. Under her guidance immigration laws were relaxed and health care for the poor, including a string of orphanages and hospitals, were established. The population continued to climb and new cities dotted the landscape. One, named Isabella in her honour, became a centre of learning and innovation. To link up these growing metropolises the Brasilain government, aware of the role they played in the civil war in América, begun a railroad construction campaign that was soon copied by her father in Portugal. She was not one to shy from confrontation either. Capitalising on dynastic troubles in La Plata she launched an invasion to seize the remaining disputed territory in the Second Cisplatine War (1839-41). This campaign was remarkably successful. The iconic image being that of Isabel herself encouraging her soldiers, despite the best efforts at restraint by her advisers, against the La Platans at the Battle of Minas. The resulting peace treaty not only won more land for Brasil but formalised the division in their southern rival effectively ending La Plata as a major threat for the foreseeable future. Her main test of leadership however came in the 1840s.

The peace enjoyed by Peru since 1829 was broken in 1842. Peru and Brazil had overlapping territorial claims (on the Gran Chaco region but also in Acre) and skirmishes between settlers had been growing increasingly common. War feeling between the two was growing day by day as reports came into both Lima and Rio of crimes committed by the other side. This spread across the Atlantic as Spain and Portugal backed their respective partners. War did break out in April 1842 though the spark didn't come from South America. In an effort to make up for the loss of the Philippines the Spanish Republic had sought to establish itself as a power in the East. It had established a series of bases throughout Africa and the East Indies as well as cultivating friendship with the Kingdom of Siam as a bulwark against the other more powerful regional players (France, Britain, Portugal, the Dutch and arguably Mysore), a formal alliance had been signed in 1840. Portugal had long held interests in this region and resented the Spanish incursion. Tensions erupted when in January 1842 Spanish ships fired on Portuguese merchant vessels in the Straits of Malacca, apparently believing them pirates. As these things often do, events escalated. When Madrid refused to pay compensation (and with Britain and France distracted by events in the Balkans) Portugal declared war in early April. Isabel followed her father and entered the war soon after. The war that followed was known by many names. In Europe it was known as the Iberian War though in South America it was referred to as the Gran Chaco War. The war was primarily fought in two theatres: the Peru-Brasil border and in the East Indies. Actual fighting on the Spanish-Portuguese border was fierce and costly but the battle here was a general stalemate. In the East Indies the war went back and forth with the Spanish gradually losing out. The South American theatre is the focus here however. Peru seized the upper hand early on, soon gaining control of all the disputed land. The more experienced Brasilian army however hit back, hard. Isabel's railroad projects paid off as they were able to transport men to the front-line much faster than their opponents. Portuguese assistance begun to flow in once they had achieved superiority at sea (helped in this by low level support from their British friends). Though a Portuguese force fought in Acre the vast majority of troops were Brasilian. In Peru tensions between those loyal to Spain and those favouring breaking away had originally been subsumed by war fervor. However as the war dragged on and the tide turned this divide re-merged. With help from Spain not forthcoming (their forces were focused on fighting in Asia, Europe and defending the Malvinas) anti-Spanish sentiment grew. After a climactic defeat to Brasil at the Battle of Potosi the war was as good as lost. In La Paz rebels declared independence plunging Peru into Civil War. With Peru collapsing the Spanish were ready for peace and the British stepped in to mediate. The war (1842-45) was ended with the Treaty of Edinburgh which saw great gains for Portugal and Brasil (though Madrid now begun to drift into the French sphere). Francisco died in 1846 and Isabel became Queen of Portugal with her son Miguel replacing her. Isabel's legacy in Brasil cannot be understated and indeed it is unsurprising therefore that Brasil would become the first country to pass women's suffrage in years to come and, along with Portugal, be the pioneer in the advocacy of women's rights and equality in the future.

Peruvian and Brasilian soldiers clash at the Battle of Postosi:

Following defeat Peru had collapsed into Civil War between loyalists and rebels. Spain, exhausted from the war and facing pressure at home, however could do nothing to aid the loyalists. In time then the war shifted from loyalist vs. rebel to two competing factions. From La Paz a Republic of Peru led by President José Santiago fought for the establishment of a presidential state with a strong central government and a pro-industrialist mentality. Opposing them was the declared United Ecuadorian Republics a coalition of various groups that had unified around an alliance of shared interests which had strong support amongst the lower classes and pushed for a more federal structure as well as tactic backing from New Granada. Eventually the two sides were too exhausted to continue fighting and with Spain having renounced any claim to the area the two nations signed peace in 1849 and recognised the independence of one another. The Kingdom of La Plata meanwhile had not done well. The country, created by the ambitions of Prince Ferdinand, had strong early years. Under Ferdinand's reign the kingdom grew and prospered whilst settling the southern region of Patagonia. Two defeats against Peru/Spain however left their mark and Ferdinand's support amongst the nobility began to erode. Attempting to rally support behind him he launched the First Cisplatine War in 1833, which went poorly. Ferdinand died soon after, later proved to be due to arsenic poisoning. His son Alfonso succeeded him. Alfonso however proved to be a weak ruler and the authority of the monarch, already weak after Ferdinand, eroded further. He died in 1838 of an unconfirmed disease. His early death threw La Plata into a dynastic struggle. Childless the throne passed to his only sibling his sister Maria. Many were unwilling to have a woman rule the kingdom. Three factions soon emerged those backing Maria, a minority who advocated that the throne should pass to Charles of Aragon, and others who rallied around local noble Carlos, Count of San Luis. Civil war between the three would last three years, complicated by the Brasilian invasion in 1839. In the end the country was divided by the peace that ended the civil war and Brasilian invasion. The “Aragonese Faction” had been eliminated and the Legitimists (those backing Maria) were left in control of the north and east of the country in the Kingdom of La Plata (capital at Buenos Aires) whilst the “Carlists” were left with the west and south in the new Kingdom of Córdoba named after the capital ruled by the new King Carlos. By 1850 both successor kingdoms were far behind their South American neighbours in terms of development and prosperity.


Empires: Old and New
East Asia: 1790-1850

China. For a hundred and fifty years this ancient empire had been ruled by the Qing Dynasty. This great kingdom was ruled by the Qianlong emperor who had reigned since 1735. His reign had been an era of peace and prosperity. For decades China had been stable and wealthy. In the 1790s however things began to take a turn for the worst. The emperor's health began to deteriorate (based on Qing records it is believed that it was in late 1789 or early 1790 that the emperor's physical state began to worsen noticeably). In 1791 a British trade delegation arrived. They were unable to see the emperor due to his health and felt snubbed. However whilst in Beijing the British began to make contacts amongst some of the local elites who were jockeying for influence under the decaying emperor. Though unable to gain the trade benefits and opportunities they wanted the British were able to establish links within the government. A Dutch expedition from Jakarta followed the British the next year. Like their predecessors the Dutch also began, as a member of the expedition put it, “making and solidifying friendships” amongst the elite.

The Qianlong Emperor:

In 1794 a rebellion, known as the White Lotus Rebellion [1], broke out in central China. Starting as a mere annoyance the rising soon became a major concern. The government in Beijing however was paralysed. The emperor was near death and the remaining elites were becoming divided between three camps. British, Dutch and an anti-European faction known (to the Europeans) as the Golds. By 1795 the crisis was nearing a breaking point. Huge areas of central China were no longer under government control. The Gold faction had resorted to sending their own independent forces to attempt to crush the rising but these had been defeated near Xi'an. The emperor finally died in August of 1795. He was succeeded by his son the Jiaqing Emperor, an ally of the Golds. The new emperor immediately ordered troops to quell the rebellion as well as launching partially successful moves against the British and Dutch factions and against allies of his late father that he distrusted. The fateful dithering under his father however had allowed the White Lotus Rebellion to become a serious force. With the ascension of an anti-European emperor the British and Dutch through their agents now began aiding the rising hoping that a weakened China would be more susceptible to their demands. The war against the White Lotus Rebellion would drag on until 1806 with an eventual victory for the Qing. The struggle, lasting over a decade, however bankrupted the empire. The only ones who had actually grown richer were those in the payroll of the Western powers. In an effort to improve the state's finances the Jiaqing Emperor launched an ambitious plan to tax the elites and squeeze European trade. Resentment towards this move (from the aristocracy as well as from Britain and the Dutch Republic) coupled with ambitious royals led to the assassination of the emperor in 1810 and the succession of his pro-Dutch son, known as the Daoguang Emperor [2].

There was however much resistance to this ascension. Many believed the assassination a European plot (which indeed is what the evidence seems to suggest) and saw the new emperor as nothing but a European puppet (again fairly accurate). The rebellion of the Gold faction in January 1811 marked the outbreak of the Jīn War [3]. The Jīn War (1811-1818) would devastate the Qing Empire. Based in Nanking the Gold forces launched a campaign aimed at driving all European forces out of China and replacing the “puppet” emperor with his brother, a Gold sympathiser. The war would last seven years. Whole segments of Chinese society would be consumed by the violence. Gaining great support amongst the rural poor and parts of the army the Golds had the upper hand initially and the first few years went very well for them. By 1813 huge swathes of southern China were in their hands. The central heart of the empire, still yet to recover from the White Lotus Rebellion, was decimated. Whole towns were wiped out and famine ripped through the region. The city of Lanzhou changed hands three times in the fighting and by war's end was a burnt husk. The Golds almost took the capital in 1814 but were repulsed by the loyalist forces who were supported by a Dutch contingent. After the failure to take Beijing the war turned against the Gold forces. The city of Shanghai was retaken by loyalist forces the next year, again backed up by European power, this time a British Royal Navy force. The war dragged on for three more years. The last Gold bastion, Chengdu, fell in May 1818. Estimates are that between seven and nine million people died in the war. A further two in the following years due to starvation and disease.

Victorious, the government in Beijing was nonetheless bankrupt. The economy spiralled downward. The next few decades were hard for China. The emperor continue to rule from Beijing but the desolation throughout large areas of the west and south resulted in a collapse in taxation and the nation gradually went bankrupt. The Dutch and British gradually drifted apart as well. With the common enemy defeated the British began to resent the increasing Dutch dominance in the imperial court. To regain footing the British looked for alternative means to increase their influence in China. They found this in opium. Opium was grown in British Bengal and the Chinese had soon developed a ravenous habit for the drug and imports into China rapidly grew. The Dutch, eager to edge out their rivals, convinced the emperor to ban the opium trade and seize stores of the drug from British merchants. The emperor was willing to go along with this as he saw it as chance to secure a propaganda victory against a European power. Well it backfired. The British sent a fleet to China from India in support of their merchants and trade. The Opium War (1840-42) saw the British defeat the vastly inferior Qing ships and force a humiliating peace on the Qing. Hong Kong island was given over to the British and, with Britain eager to establish a major base in the east [4], the island of Hainan was also placed under British control. The Dutch, who at the end of the day had not been willing to risk outright war with Britain by intervening directly, had attempted to aid the Chinese. In the end the Dutch increased their influence in Beijing as the emperor, distraught over the war's outcome and the Qing fall from grace, became a recluse and de facto control of the country passed to his (Dutch paid) advisers. Not willing to miss an opportunity the Russians presented an offer to the Qing in 1848 to purchase Chinese lands north of the Amur river. With the economy in desperate straights and with Russian troops already moving into the region the Beijing government agreed. Eager to establish formal control of their own on a base in the region and to pre-empt a rumoured French move, the Dutch purchased the island of Taiwan the year after. The money from the two sales helped stabilise the Chinese economy. However by 1850 the Qing Empire was a shadow of its former self. It had lost land to the European powers, its economy was stagnant and weak, the emperor a recluse, its military humiliated, European influence continued to rise, it was outpaced by Asian neighbours, and above all else the central control of Beijing was dissolving as regions on the fringes of the empire began to drift away and the Imperial “mandate of heaven” was under question.

Map of the Qing Empire 1850:


The Korean peninsula in 1790 was under the rule of the Chosun (or Joseon) Dynasty. Chosun was nominally a Qing tributary state and was a vassal of the Empire to the west. The current king of Chosun, Jeongjo, had been ruler since 1776. His reign was a turning point in Korean history. Jeongjo [5] was a reformist monarch who had done much to increase the power and stature of his kingdom. He had early in his reign established a royal library (Kyujanggak), as well as passing a series of laws freeing up social and economic regulations and restrictions as well as opening government positions to those who had previously been barred due to their social status. Above all though Jeongjo was an ambitious man who, like all leading Koreans, resented the rule of the Qing who were seen as aggressive barbarians. As the Qing state entered into a wave of uncertainty in the 1790s many in Chosun thought the time was right to remove themselves from Beijing's grasp. Jeongjo however was concerned that doing so might bring the wrath of the British and Dutch who were seen as allies of China. Things began to change however in the early 1800s. As China continued to experience war and political instability Jeongjo became bolder in his reforms. Unwanted Chinese customs were abandoned and an independent Korean state and military were well on their way to full establishment. The greatest boon came in 1814. As China tore itself apart in the Jīn War the Kingdom of France sought to gain in foothold in East Asia, and they saw one in Chosun. In exchange for deals benefiting French trade and allowing France to station a small naval force in the country, Chosun began to receive French aid and assistance. Acting out of their base in Manilla the French were determined to win an ally in Asia. With much of India controlled by Britain and its ally Mysore, the Dutch ruling the East Indies and China falling under Anglo-Dutch influence, Paris was determined to cultivate its own ally. French weapons and technological innovation soon poured into Chosun. Jeongjo's arguably greatest achievement was his success in making France see him and his country as an ally not a playground as was happening in China. He was able to gain the best of European learning and crafts without coming to be seen as a European puppet. Jeongjo died in 1832 and is still remembered as one of Korea's greatest monarchs. In 1841 as the Opium War waged in China, Chosun (now ruled by Jeongjo's capable and ambitious son Sanggye) signed a formal alliance with France. The Franco-Chosun alliance was popular in the country as the British triumph in China worried Korea. It was clear that traditional Asian weapons and tactics were simply outclassed by the Europeans. Sanggye also took this opportunity to formally renounce any loyalty to the Qing and declared Chosun completely independent. By 1850 Korea was a buzz of activity. The army and state were modernizing and the first inklings of industrialisation were appearing on the peninsular with the first railroads beginning construction. Like Mysore in India, Chosun was a successful example of an Asian state adopting the strengths of the Europeans to become a major power whilst remaining truly independent. At the midpoint of the 19th Century Chosun was an advanced and ambitious power, and with China crumbling to its west and the Japanese remaining firm in their isolationism to the east the Korean kingdom was ready to make its mark on the world stage. To fuel its infant industrial transition Chosun needed resources..

Flag of Chosun:


The history of the south-east Asian mainland in the early 19th Century is one of two simultaneous and competing conflicts: a struggle for dominance between the three Asian powers (Burma, Siam and Viet Nam) and battles between Asian and European empires. Of the fighting between the three Asian powers Viet Nam achieved the most success. Viet Nam was ruled by the Nguyễn Dynasty who had come to power in 1802. The country fought two wars against Siam (1814-16 and 1829-32) both of which ended in triumph and brought the disputed area between them under Vietnamese control. The weakening of the Qing to the north was seen as an opportunity for Viet Nam who were able to fight the Siamese without fear of Chinese aggression as well as launching a limited campaign against the Qing in the early 1840s managing to expand their kingdom. Relations between Viet Nam and the European powers in this period were tense. But with the main powers (Britain, the Netherlands and France) focused to the north the Vietnamese managed to avoid any major confrontations in this period; although the 'accidental' sinking of a Portuguese merchant ship in 1837 by the Vietnamese briefly resulted in fighting with Vietnamese Emperor Minh Mạng eventually agreeing to pay an indemnity to Portugal in return for peace. By 1850 the Empire of Viet Nam was a stable and strong nation and was, arguably, the strongest Asian state outside of India and Chosun. Siam had a tougher time. It had been defeated by Viet Nam in 1816. This weakness had seen it invaded by Britain in 1819 and the loss of southern territories. It's second defeat to Viet Nam in 1832 resulted in King Rama III courting the Spanish who had recently reasserted themselves in the area. A formal alliance between them in 1840 and Spanish military assistance prevented the Vietnamese from attacking Siam again and instead Viet Nam went north to China. Siam became embroiled in the Iberian War (1842-5) and, alongside Spain, was defeated by the Portuguese losing yet more territory. Despite defeat Siam's armies performed well against the Portuguese and the kingdom remained a regional power. In 1848 Siam even went on to defeat Burmese forces in a short yet bloody conflict to the northwest. Burma did not do so well. The British, starting in the 1830s under Governor-General Thomas Wellesley, would wage a series of campaigns against the Burmese. Despite valiant efforts the kingdom was crushed and by 1850 was divided between British control in the south and a collection of successor states to the north.

[1] An OTL rebellion that is more successful in TTL.
[2] There were (at least) two attempts to assassinate him in OTL, though they were unsuccessful.
[3] A Westernization of the world for Gold.
[4] Since they don't have Singapore in TTL
[5] In OTL he died earlier under mysterious circumstances, he does not do so here.

Cracks in the Crescent
The Ottoman Empire: (1805-1840)

The Age of Revolutions had shaken the empire of Osman. Pulled into the Revolutionary Wars by the Balkan rebellions the Turks had fought against Russia and their Slavic allies. Though Constantinople had been forced to grant independence to Serbia, Greece and the United Kingdom of the Danube (UKD) it had remained intact despite the Russian onslaught. The primary reason for this was the ascension of Sultan Mustafa who had deposed his incompetent brother in a coup in 1797. Mustafa had begun a process of reform in the Ottoman Empire that would help it stave off Russian aggression. After the end of the war in 1802 Mustafa's reforms continued. Britain was courted during this period as a counter to St. Petersburg. Under British guidance the Imperial navy and army were modernized. New weapons, uniforms and tactics were imported. Prussia too was friendly and one of Mustafa's greatest achievements was getting the Prussians to train and educate Ottoman generals in Berlin. Internally corruption was top of Mustafa's list of targets, he hoped to cleanse the government and bring about an end to the stagnation of the Empire. The administrative and bureaucratic systems were opened up to skilled commoners, old and inept officials were cast out and a new education system (inspired by Austria) was implemented. The more decedent elements of the government including the Harem were purged and reformed and the role of the eunuchs was curtailed. A more Western and efficient civil service was created.

Not everyone agreed with Mustafa and his campaign however. In 1818 a reactionary element in Constantinople attempted to oust the Sultan. They were foiled however and interrogated. Under questioning it came out that the conspirators had (or at least had tried to) form an alliance with Janissaries, themselves alienated by the military transformation. The Sultan had been eager to do away with this archaic military order and used this as an excuse to abolish them in March 1819. The Janissaries didn't take this lying down however and rose up in revolt, taking control of large areas of Thrace and threatening the capital. The Greeks and Serbs begun preparing to take advantage of the crisis and support the Janissaries. However the arrival of a British naval squadron in the Aegean dissuaded the Greeks whilst the rapid collapse of the Janissary revolt in the face of the new Ottoman army ended any likelihood of intervention from Serbia. With the Janissaries defeated the Sultan was able to secure his rule. He died in 1822 and was succeeded by his son Osman IV.

Osman IV was very much his father's son. He continued the work of his father in reforming the Ottoman state and military. He was also fascinated by European power and prestige. He visited London, Dortmund, Berlin and Vienna in a grand tour and was inspired and encouraged by the things he saw there. In Britain and Austria-Hungary he was intrigued by their constitutional monarchical systems. In 1824 he drew up plans for an Ottoman constitution designed to make a move in this direction. Opposition from conservatives however made this plan difficult and it was eventually dropped. Osman was also an ambitious ruler. In 1826 a border skirmish with Persia was exploited and Osman launched an invasion of his eastern neighbour. The war (1826-28) was a triumph for the Ottomans and their new military, though the Persians put up tough resistance and the victory was not as conclusive as hoped and showed that the Turkish reforms were still far from finished. The most important consequence of this war was the link it forged between the empire and the Second Delhi Sultanate. Delhi, a rising power in northern India, had recently fought its own war with Persia and the current king of Delhi Muhammad Ajit became a close ally of the Empire. The two empires gained a lot from one another. The Ottomans gave Delhi military assistance which it had in turn received from Britain (though it is worth noting that once this exchange began Britain greatly slowed its support to the Ottomans as Delhi was seen as a major rival in India) whilst from Delhi the Ottomans gained an ally against Persia and privileged access to the luxury goods of India. Ajit was succeeded by his son Muhammad II in 1837 and he continued this tradition. Though now Muhammad II's radical form of state (Sunni) Islam flowed to the Sublime Porte. This new near fanatical and political form of religion found a receptive base in the Ottoman empire and would become quite a force in the coming decades. Osman IV died however in 1830 of a fever and was succeeded by his young and weak son Selim III.

Osman IV:

Selim III was only fourteen when his father died. Very quickly he came under the influence of a small caste of conservative reactionaries. Selim's reign would be a low point for the empire. The small council that controlled the young Sultan effectively ran the country. Selim, it soon became clear, had a mental handicap that affected his speech and he was kept out of the public sphere and in isolation. Throughout the early 1830s infighting, jealousy and incompetence amongst the 'council' greatly weakened the empire. The reforms of the past slowed and many were abandoned. Economically the empire's recent growth halted and stagnation set in. In 1834 as the Fourth Silesian War raged Greece and Serbia smelled blood. With the great powers distracted they signed an alliance and invaded the Ottoman Empire. The war lasted thirteen months and was a bloody stalemate. Though they made early gains against the Ottomans who were beset by division at the top, the Greco-Serbian advance was soon checked and reversed. The Balkan countries had hoped Russia would intervene on their behalf but the Tsar was preoccupied with the war in Poland and Finland. Peace was signed in Budapest in 1835 with a return to status quo ante bellum. The Ottoman war effort showed that their military reforms had made progress and that the tools for success were there for the empire, but without a stable and competent leadership the empire was doomed to continue its relative decline.

Ottoman forces fighting the Greeks in Macedonia (1835):

During this period Egypt was a hive of activity. The governor (or Wāli)of Egypt during the reign of Selim III was Omar Ali. Omar was a competent and highly religious man who had aptly governed Egypt for the Sultan. He had been a close friend to Osman IV and had been a strong supporter of the former Sultan's reforms. Under Selim's rule however direct control of Egypt slackened. Ali had begun to grow bolder in distancing himself from Constantinople and had been developing a strong power base. The most dramatic development in Egypt however was the rise of the Whaheydism (also known as the Green Crescent movement). Whaheydism (from the Arabic word for unity) was a religious and political movement that began in Egypt in the early 1830s. It's leader and primary advocate was Said Awad. Awad was a former lawyer who had become swept up and enthralled by the radical Islamic ideas coming into the empire from Delhi. He had started speaking, organizing and gathering a following in Alexandria, stressing stricter adherence to the Quran and traditional Islamic beliefs. In 1831 he was joined by Muhammad Seif. Seif was an ex-soldier who had traveled throughout the empire. He had grown to resent the Turkish dominance and desired the end of Turkish rule over the Arab people. His ideas greatly interested and influenced Awad whose devotion and faith in turn inspired Seif. Thus Whaheydism was born: stressing strict Islamic law and custom whilst calling for Arab unity and freedom form Turkish rule. By 1840 Whaheydism was a powerful political and social force in Egypt to the point that Omar Ali himself met with Said Awad and was reported to have been greatly taken with his ideas. It is one of history's more interesting anecdotes that the force we today know as nationalism, a movement that would soon hit Europe like a storm, began in the suburbs of Alexandria as a Muslim Arab ideology. Egypt was now a tinderbox restless under Turkish rule and host to rising numbers of Whaheydi. The Ottoman Empire as a whole was divided between reformers and reactionaries as infighting in Constantinople and rebellion in the provinces caused tensions to sizzle under the surface. All it needed was a spark.

It would be a tough blow for Prussia,Frederick's son Frederick William ll wasn't up to the task. He wasn't able to adequately deal with the problems brought on by the French Revolution.
Empires Fall and Nations Rise

Guns, God and Generals
The Empire Falls: (1840-1844)

In July 1840 the spark came. Doya, a small town in the Ottoman Balkans, would play host to the trigger. As Ottoman infighting between the reformers and the reactionaries who controlled the Sultan wore on management of the empire worsened. Pay for the military began to come increasingly infrequently. A garrison in Doya rioted over lack of pay. The soldiers quickly turned to looting and the town was partially burned and many citizens were killed. Noting the complete failure of Constantinople to respond to the crisis, and citing lukewarm excuses about supporting Serb minorities, the new Serbian King Stefan declared war on the Ottoman Empire and invaded. Honouring the alliance of 1834 the Greeks under King Paul II followed suit. The Turks for the second time in six years found themselves fighting Greece and Serbia. This time however things were less favourable for the Empire. Their enemies were armed with more modern weapons imported from Russia and the administrative paralysis in Constantinople, worse now than it was six years ago. hampered effective handling of the war. After a series of small scale skirmishes a Greco-Serbian army under Paul II decisively defeated the Turks at the Battle of Stobi. The victory here convinced the United Kingdom of the Danube to enter the conflict against the Turks. Now beset by three enemies the Ottomans were in trouble.

The Ottoman forces in the Balkans were rallied however by general Ismet Turan. Turan was a reformer and backed that faction in the capital. However, tired of political divisions and seriously concerned about the course of the war Turan took personal control of the Ottoman armies in Europe and waged a remarkable campaign against the three invading powers (known for simplicity sake as the Bucharest Pact where they signed a triple alliance in early 1841). The Bucharest Pact was soon driven back on all fronts and their cause looked doomed. Russia however was not about to let its allies in the region collapse however. The ageing Tsar Peter IV decided to intervene. Russia declared war on the Turks in September 1841. Two Russian forces entered the conflict, one moving south through the UKD to the front the other striking into the Turkish Caucasus. Reinforced by the Russians the Bucharest Pact counter-attacked. By early 1842 the Turks were once more on the retreat. It looked like the Russians would soon be in Constantinople.

The Second Balkan War, Early Stage:

In April 1842 two events changed the course of the war once more. The first happened to the West. Britain, who had been friendly with the Turks for decades, was alarmed at the Russian intervention and was determined to prevent it. British policy in this region for decades had been to prevent Russian control of the Bosporus. In this enterprise they found a useful yet surprising ally, France. The French, like the British, had no desire to see St. Petersburg gain access to the Mediterranean, which Paris was determined to become a French lake. King Charles X of France was concerned about growing Russian power not only in Europe but in the Far East where France's ally Chosun was competing with Russia for influence in northern China. When the British proposed the idea of a joint venture to support the Turks, Charles agreed along with a majority of the French Parliament, surprising the British as much as anyone else. The Second Balkan War (the first being the 1834-5 war) would mark the first conflict in which Britain and France had fought on the same side since the War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718–1720). At the end of April a French expedition left France en route to Malta where it would join a British force and head east. The arrival of the Anglo-French forces would once more shift the balance in the conflict. The second event was in Egypt. Seeing what he believed to be the impeding collapse of the Ottoman state under the Russian and Bucharest Pact attack, Omar Ali declared Egypt independent. The move was strongly supported by Said Awad and his Whaheydi movement. In a few months Egypt had been cleared of forces loyal to Constantinople. Ali then unleashed the Whaheydi. Said Awad was determined to liberate his Arab brothers from Turkish rule. Two armies now set out from Egypt bearing the banner of Whaheydism, a Green Crescent on white. One under Muhammad Seif went west into North Africa, the other, larger, force under Awad went East. The Ottoman state now appeared to be crumbling.

The Anglo-French force arrived in the Aegean in June of 1842. By now the Turkish forces were in headlong retreat. The talented commander Ismet Turan had fought a skilled withdrawal but against the numbers of the Russo-Bucharest forces he was driven further and further back. Turan was now acting unilaterally and without official support. The Ottoman state was crumbling in North Africa and the Middle East and parts of Constantinople were lawless. The Allied arrival however steadied the situation. The Anglo-French intervention divided into two groups. One led by British Admiral Alexander began a campaign to knock Greece out of the war. The small Greek fleet was wiped out in a battle near the island of Naxos. The Allied fleet now began a bombardment of the Greek coastline and landed an amphibious force a few miles southeast of Athens with the intent of taking the capital. The second groups sailed further north and landed an expedition near Gallipoli. The ground forces were led by French General Lucien. The Allied force at Gallipoli was comprised of British and French troops. Also present were contingents from other nations that had sent support for various reasons, be it to honour alliances or a hared concern over Russian power. Portugal, Spain, Aragon, Italy and the Dutch had all volunteered men for the campaign. The lack of cohesion this caused however made life difficult for Lucien. Due to the chaos in the Ottoman capital the Allies decided to co-ordinate with Ismet Turan rather than through the Sultan. The war would rage on for a few more months in relative stalemate. In October however Athens fell. With the Greek coastline exposed to assault and their forces being pushed back in the north the Greeks surrendered the following month. The Greek collapse freed up the southern Allied force. More troops were re-directed north to the main fighting whilst the Allied fleet now sailed into the Black Sea. Where, linking up what was left of the Ottoman navy, they crushed the Russian Black Sea fleet off the coast of Varna. The Russians now attempted to send their Baltic Fleet to the fighting but under massive Anglo-French pressure the Danes refused to allow the Russians through Skaggerak. Not wanting to enter war with Denmark and with the likely situation of being defeated in the North Sea by the British and French anyway the Russians kept their Baltic Fleet at home. The Greek exit and the destruction of the Russian fleet shifted the balance of the war. Russian, Serb and Danubian forces were gradually pushed back. A new Russian force under Prince Alexis arrived in Spring of 1843 which balanced out the fighting. The war would go back and forth throughout the region for months. British and French public support for the waned as the cost of maintaining and reinforcing the expedition mounted. In St. Petersburg the Tsar and his government began looking for an end to the conflict as it seemed almost impossible now that they would ever get to Constantinople. Russian spies meanwhile were picking up frantic diplomatic chatter between Berlin and Vienna as well as signs of Polish movements near the border. As the risk of a wider war grew the peace faction in Russia gained ascendency.

British and Russian Cavalry at the Battle of Maritsa, Dec. 1842:

In the Middle East and North Africa meanwhile the Whaheydi war went on. Ottoman control in North Africa evaporated by the end of 1842. New independent Sultanates were declared in Algiers and Tunis, whilst Egyptian Whaheydi armies conquered Libya. The new Sultanate of Algiers had a tough time driving out Ottoman loyalists and were only victorious with help from Aragon. The Aragonese within a few years had managed to cement their presence in the new kingdom and had turned it into a vassal state. While fighting raged in the Balkans the French sent a small fleet to Alexandria. Here they gave weapons and aid to the Egyptian forces. With Britain backing the Turks and the Aragonese expanding their control in the west, France wanted to secure an ally in the region. In his letters to Parliament British Admiral Alexander wrote “the French have used this cause to establish for themselves an ally in the new Egyptian regime. They have feasted on the carcass of the Ottoman state. Like a bird of prey, a hawk, they have swept in and feasted”. This French move caused antagonisms within the Alliance. This letter also represents the first depiction of France as the hawk, a characterization that would soon become quite common and widespread. In May 1843 Sultan Selim III died, the cause of which has never been accurately determined. The reactionary council now attempted to install Selim's younger brother as Sultan. The reformists had a different idea. They seized control of the city, killing many of the reactionaries including Selim's brother Mustafa and then offered the crown to Ismet Turan, the hero of the war. Britain exasperated with the incompetence of the old government backed the move. Turan, a capable and ambitious man, accepted. The coup of 1843 ended the Ottoman Empire, but it saved the Turkish state. Freed from infighting Turan and his government were able to take full control of the army. The Whaheydi advance was stalled at a battle near Damascus. With North Africa free from Turkish rule, the Whaheydi advance stalled, the war in the Balkans stalemated and the three great powers tiring a cease-fire was declared in August.

The Second Balkan War, Later Stage:

In Vienna representatives from Britain, France, Russia, Serbia, Greece, the UKD, Egypt and the rump Ottoman state met to discuss peace. Greece, Serbia and the UKD were each enlarged as Constantinople was in no position to reassert authority over the disputed areas. Greece gained lands to the north as well as Crete and some Aegean islands. Serbia gained control over large tracts of the previous Ottoman Balkans as well as incorporating Montenegro and the UKD pushed south. It was clear that the Turks would be unable to regain control of these lands and Britain and France believed that strong Balkan kingdoms would be less likely to serve as pawns to the Russians and more capable of independent action. Bosnia, which had not been conquered but had failed to be taken by the Serbs, was given over to Austria-Hungary as a protectorate as it was too small to be fully independent and London and Paris preferred to see it under Vienna's rule rather than Belgrade or St. Petersburg. The new kingship of Turan was recognised. The old Ottoman state was abolished. With only Anatolia and Mesopotamia under the control of Constantinople the new Sultanate of Turkey was declared. After centuries the Ottoman Empire had ceased to exist. The conquests of Egypt and the Whaheydi were recognised. There was a brief period of uncertainty over who would control this new state as many Whaheydi followed Said Awad not Omar Ali. To stave off civil war Awad renounced leadership and accepted Omar's rule provided that Ali fully embrace Whaheydism. Consequently Omar Ali was made the first Sultan of the Whaeydi Arab Sultanate, stretching from Tripoli in the west to Mecca and Damascus in the east. Russia gained land in the Caucasus at the Turks expense. What to do with the Bulgars proved elusive. Though they had not risen up during the war the Turks seemed unwilling to hold onto those lands for fear of facing a future insurgency whilst the Russians pushed for the liberation of all the Slavic peoples. The Serbs however were eager to be the dominant Slavic state in the Balkans and were unwilling to give up their new lands, parts of which had seizable Bulgarian populations now integrated into Greater Serbia. In the end a new state the Principality of Zagora was created. Not a full kingdom, it was formally a protectorate of Turkey. The map of the Islamic world and the Balkans had been changed forever.

The Balkans: 1843

The Treaty of Vienna marked a triumph for British and French realpolitik. Despite the fact that the Slavic nations had arguably won the war the Anglo-French diplomats managed to forge a peace treaty that benefited their designs as much as possible. A hard task in an unfavourable peace but the Allies managed to do what they could in the circumstances. Serbia, the UKD and Greece had all been enlarged and strengthened at Turkey's expense. The result was a careful balance of power. By empowering the three Balkan states Britain and France had reduced these nation's dependency on Russia. With the Turks weakened the Balkan powers now had more to worry about with each other. By playing into Serbian ambitions the Western powers had made Serbia the greatest power in the Balkans (not counting Austria or Russia). Consequently the Greeks and Danubians would seek to balance out Serbian power. Therefore not only would Greece and the UKD no longer be reliant on Russian power they were also now focused on countering Serbian strength. In addition the new Serbia, though large, contained many non-Serbs and this internal division it was hoped would prevent Serbia from becoming a regional hegemon. In the likelihood of Russian efforts to push Serbia and the UKD to attack Austria the Allies had managed to help themselves out. Austria had gained a buffer against the Serbs in Bosnia. Greece and Zagora now were more likely to fight against Serbia than with it, and most importantly the Bosporus remained closed to Russia. Thus Britain and France had managed to divide the Balkans and set a balance of power that favoured their interests.


The World - 1850

In the fifty years since the dawn of the 19th Century the world had changed dramatically. The Americas had, for the most part, freed themselves from European control and established several new states, with varying degrees of success. Old empires, such as the Ottomans and Mughals had collapsed. The world had grown smaller as Europeans had settled and colonized the different corners of the world and forged ties with nations from Persia to Korea. Europe had become a battlefield as the Fourth Silesian and Second Balkan Wars transformed the political balance of power.

In 1850 there were a collection of nations that stood above the rest. Of these, three stood as the Great Powers. Britain ruled the waves. The Royal Navy had established itself as the world's most powerful fleet. Britain controlled territory on six continents and its reach was unrivaled. France was the dominant power in continental Western Europe and had arguably the best army on the continent. From Quebec to Manilla, France had a string of bases and colonies. It had established ties with states such as Korea, Gran Colombia and the Arab Sultanate making it a true global player. And Russia. The Russian Empire was the world's largest nation stretching from Poland to the Pacific and beyond. It had evolved from an agrarian backwater to a modern power with global ambitions.

In Europe Prussia, Austria-Hungary, Saxony-Bavaria and the League of the Rhine dominated the centre of the continent. Poland, much reduced in size, stood defiant. To the north Denmark had emerged as a power in its own right and had set its sights on expansion further abroad, whilst the Iberian nations looked to extend their influence in the Mediterranean and the world. In Italy and the Balkans new states emerged to challenge the status quo. The old Ottoman Empire had been abolished and in its place the Turkish Sultanate looked to preserve its lands whilst to its south the new radical Whahedyi movement established a great empire in the Arab Sultanate.

In South America new states had emerged to compete for dominance. Brazil, the larger half of the union with Portugal, had defeated its neighbours to the south and west and was emerging as an industrial power. Gran Colombia had become a monarchy and with its French alliance sought to establish itself in the Pacific and the Caribbean. To the north the Am
érican Republic had fought a bitter civil war but had come out stronger. Tensions were mounting with its northern rival the Louisianan Empire still ruled by the Bonaparte family. New England, still a Dominion of Britain, had thrust itself on the world stage and was ready for a global role.

In the east the ancient Chinese civilization was failing. The Qing Dynasty was weak and divided as its great empire began to fracture and the encircling powers looked on greedily. Korea was an industrial kingdom hungering for resources to fuel its rise. Viet Nam stood triumphant in southeast Asia. In India, Mysore was a modern state with a powerful fleet and an infant colonial empire. Delhi was a military powerhouse with a devout adherence to Islam ready to challenge any of its neighbours.

The year was 1850 and the world stood on the brink of a new age.


Under the Eagle
The Louisianan Empire: 1830-1860

Under its first emperor, Jérôme I, the Louisianan Empire had emerged as a colossus bestriding the North American heartland. Its historic foe, the Confederacy of American States, had been crushed, Virginia had seceded and the country was now run by a military dictatorship struggling to keep the CAS afloat. Industrialisation and urbanization had become increasingly prevalent developments in the Empire, especially in the south and along the Mississippi. New Orleans had become a majestic, proud and booming city known as the “Jewel of the Gulf”, at least by the Louisianans. Political stability had returned following the uncertainty of republic’s final years and the state was strong and secure. The army had proven itself to be the strongest force on the North American continent, and had evolved into a well-disciplined and experienced outfit. The next three decades would be a critical period for the Empire, tensions with the Américan Republic to the west and conflicts with the native people would be the primary foreign policy concerns for New Orleans. Meanwhile new relationships would be courted throughout the Americas and beyond.

The 1830s were dominated by two roughly simultaneous border concerns. To the west Louisiana was to be drawn into the Tejan Revolution. Eager to weaken its western neighbour, seen now as the Empire’s primary regional rival, the government in New Orleans began funnelling arms and supplies to the rebels. When it looked like UPA forces would subdue the rebels a Louisianan force moved into Tejas to support. The Battle of Sevilla in 1832 saw a combined Louisianan-Tejan force triumph and would mark the first, though not the last, direct confrontation between Américan and Louisianan armies. After Tejan independence was recognized by the UPA, Louisiana withdrew its forces. The decisive intervention by the Empire during the revolution however would greatly strengthen the “French” faction in Tejas, and consequently the second President of Tejas was Jean Bastian, a Louisianan émigré, elected in 1835. In 1833 Jérôme I died, and was given an exquisite state funeral. He was laid to rest in a specially constructed tomb/monument across the river from the city, not too far from the Imperial Palace (still under construction), which was more like a large manor than some of the more grandiose palaces in Europe. Jérôme was succeeded by his son, Napoleon, named for his father. The coronation ceremony of the new emperor was a magnificent event. The emperor sailed down the Mississippi escorted by two Louisianan ships of the line the INL[FONT=&quot][1][/FONT]Liberté and the INL Rousseau. The two vessels led a flotilla of smaller boats down the great river, banners flying from masts and elsewhere, the red, blue and white flag of the revolution, the newer banner emblazoned with the imperial eagle, as well as banners from throughout the empire and pennants of all colours (though red, blue and white were of course the most common). The British ambassador present, Charles Watt, wrote “I have never seen such a splendid display of majesty, power and colour. The sound of the voices, trumpets and saluting cannon was overwhelming. The cries of Vive l'Empereur! and Vivela Louisiane! burst fourth from the mouths of thousands along the river. The sun glittered from the gold of the ships and from the silver of the guard on the dock. What a sight indeed.” The emperor was then escorted by a detachment of Guard cavalry to the steps of the great National Assembly building, which overlooked the river with its famous dome dominating the view, where he was greeted by the Assembly members and yet more crowds before continuing on to the St. Louis Cathedral (greatly expanded since the republic) and was crowned Napoléon I Bonaparte, Emperor of Louisiana on July 14th 1833.

The National Assembly Building seen from the river. The statue out front is of Philippe Bardet.

When civil war erupted in the United Provinces there were many who advised the new emperor to intervene and take advantage of the UPA’s weakness. The new emperor was a cautious man however and was unwilling to commit to a major campaign, indeed this turned out to be the right course of action as the focus of the Empire soon turned to the northern frontier. For years the Empire had been fighting against Native American tribes in the north of the country. This struggled had ranged from skirmishes and raids to full out battles across the decades. In early 1834 a native force of the Pawnee tribe attacked and razed the town of Cenon, apparently in retaliation for a Louisianan attack on one of their own villages. Emperor Napoleon was determined to crush the native insurrection. With the UPA in civil war the time was right to concentrate on crushing this threat. A large Imperial army was gathered near Turin in the north of the country before being marched north. The native forces in the north of Louisianan reacted to this escalation by the government in Louisiana and formed the Triple Alliance led by the three dominant tribes, the Pawnee, Cheyenne and Sioux. The Indian War (1834-1839) would be a drawn out five year struggle. The Louisianans at first were unable to bring the men desired to the forefront of the campaign, the men they were able to rush up were sent via river. Over time though the numbers began to swell and the industrial and technological advantage of the Louisianan forces gradually gave them the upper hand. The forces of the Triple Alliance meanwhile were being backed by factions in the British Native Protectorate, which supplied them with advanced British weapons. The Indian War was the first sign of real Anglo-Louisianan tensions as Triple Alliance forces would continuously withdraw across the border into the Protectorate when threatened, safe from Imperial forces. The government in New Orleans was irritated at the British refusal to control their native allies and were convinced the British were aiding their enemies. In reality the British were putting massive pressure on the Protectorate to cease aid to the Triple Alliance and close their borders to little avail. The war finally ended in 1839 when the Triple Alliance leaders agreed to surrender and disarm what was left of their people, whilst those who refused to capitulate fled to the Protectorate.

The Indian War would have great impact on the empire. The need to better reinforce their northern frontier against further Indian aggression led to a railroad building programme. The inspiration for this was the significance of railroads in the Américan Civil War, which had not escaped international attention. The Imperial rail network would triple between 1839 and 1850, a huge increase that would also spur the expansion of the Imperial steal and coal industries. In addition river troop transports were created en masse to better move men around the nation in times of emergency. The urban centres of the Empire meanwhile continued to experience great change. New Orleans was host to a great population boom. This growth compiled with the relatively small city necessitated change. The city grew denser as people moved in and neighbourhoods became tighter and tighter. The city also became taller; new public housing projects created multi-level buildings giving New Orleans a unique skyline. In 1844 the capital was hit by a deadly outbreak of cholera that coincided with a severe flood. The “Crisis of 1844” would leave its mark on the capital. A string of new canals and levees were constructed to better control, guide and defend against the Mississippi. A public health project was launched, including the creation of many modern hospitals inspired by lessons learnt from the Indian Wars. By 1860 the city had the best public health status of any major city in the world. There was also an effort launched to create more habitable space near the city. Inspired by the Dutch the government set about a land reclamation project, this also inspired a wave of new ideas which in the latter half of the century would lead to the development of industrial draining techniques. Culturally the capital would become host to émigrés from Saint Domingue, giving the capital a lively cosmopolitan feel; whilst the agitations of this immigrant community would serve to further deteriorate Anglo-Louisianan relations. In 1846 the Second Indian War broke out as clashes between settlers and natives continued to escalate. This war would last two years and would end in August 1848. This conflict brought Britain and Louisiana to the edge of war as Imperial forces twice invaded the Protectorate in reprisal attacks. Britain opted for negotiations with Napoleon as they did not want a full-scale war, but more importantly because the Protectorate was in a state of civil war. Pro-British native tribes were battling against a confederacy of other tribes, led by the Blackfoot who wanted nothing to do with any Europeans, regardless if they wore red or blue. The Blackfoot War (1848-1851) would see the western part of the protectorate break off into a fully independent Indian nation which Britain lacked the will to crush (as it was currently engaged in a serious struggle against Nagpur in India) and saw the new Union of the Plains as a potential buffer between them and the Louisianans as well as a useful means of ridding themselves of the more troublesome native tribes. The remaining Protectorate however, freed of the inter-factional fighting, would over the next few decades develop into a more recognizable “state” in the European sense. It developed a confederate structure to accommodate the various tribes and the centre of this fledgling nation was the growing town of Tanka Wicoti (which came from the Sioux for Great Camp), which had a population of 35,000 by 1860. With much British support the Protectorate would continue to grow and modernize.

A painting depicting a battle from the Second Indian War:

The Second Indian War (1846-1848) had two lasting impacts on Louisiana. Firstly it crushed the native forces within the northern regions of the empire. Though the Union of the Plains (UotP) would remain hostile it would never be a serious threat to the far larger, more populous and more advanced Empire and for all intents and purposes the frontier was secured. The second impact was definitely more significant however. Relations between Louisiana and Britain (and therefore New England as well) had collapsed during this war after decades of deterioration. Napoleon was determined that Louisiana be able to defend itself in any future war with Britain and its allies. Consequently a plan to expand the Imperial navy was launched. Coastal and river ships were easier to produce due to Louisiana’s relatively small coastline, though a decent amount of ocean going warships would be churned out as well. As well as a naval build-up Napoleon launched a series of diplomatic endeavours to strengthen the Empire vis-a-vis the British. A formal alliance with Tejas was signed in 1850. In addition the emperor sought to court the mother country, France. The French were eager to establish strong ties with New Orleans to counter British influence in North America. Despite fighting together against Russia, Britain and France had quickly returned to the previous state of suspicion and hostility as the two competed for influence from the South China Sea to the Caribbean. Napoleon’s son, Jérôme, was sent to France to be educated in Paris as a sign of a developing relationship. This strengthening of ties with France is known in Louisiana as the Le Rapprochement, and would be the key theme in Louisianan foreign policy for years to come. In 1853 Napoleon died and his son was crowned Jérôme II. Under Jérôme II, Louisiana would expand its foreign ties well beyond its borders. Whilst in France Jérôme had been married an Aragonese princess, Isabel, who now became Louisiana’s first foreign born Empress. Jérôme was eager to seal more dynastic alliances. His son, Joseph, married Maria of the Kingdom of New Granada, a useful link with that French allied state to the south. Jérôme also married his daughter Marie to Francois, the second son of the king of France. It was however part of the marriage contract that under no circumstances would Francois ever be crowned king in Louisiana, the Louisianan people would not consent to rule by a French king again, no matter the circumstances. Under the rule of Jérôme II the Freedmen’s Republic to the east was transformed from a Louisianan ally to a virtual extension of the Empire, and many on both sides of the border were calling for the ex-slave republic to be annexed. By 1859 the stage in North America was now set. Louisiana had gone from strength to strength and had placed itself firmly on the side of France in its struggle for global dominion with the United Kingdoms. Britain meanwhile had secured its ties with the Américan Republic and New England was still a British Dominion. Jérôme however was determined, like his grandfather, to lead Louisiana to greatness on the battlefield. The Américans to the west, British to the north, and Yankees to the east convinced New Orleans that if war came they must strike first and hard to prevent encirclement. In May 1859 a Louisianan merchant ship exploded in Veracruz harbour. The Louisianan press claimed it was an act of sabotage and Jérôme demanded the government in Mexico City pay reparations. The Américans in turn claimed that if anyone should be paying anything it should be the Tejan government whose citizens had done much damage to settlements along the border during the Américan Civil War. Tejas refused and asked Louisiana to send troops into the country to protect it from Américan attack. Mexico City claimed this violated the treaty they had signed recognising Tejan independence which said Louisiana would not be able to station troops in Tejas in peace time. When asked to withdraw Jérôme declared war on the Américan Republic.

[FONT=&quot][1][/FONT] Impérial Navire Louisianen, Imperial Louisianan Ship

The American War (1859-1863)
Part I
The war officially began on June 4th 1859 with the declaration of war by Jérôme II on the Américan Republic. It very soon became evident that the Louisianans were much better prepared for war than their Américan counter-parts. The Imperial army’s standing strength at the time of the war’s outbreak was 45,000 men. This was quite large by New World standards for a peace time army. In the first few weeks of war the Louisianans were not only able to assemble 25,000 more men (properly trained and equipped) but was, using their rail network which had grown dramatically since 1839, were able to rush these armies to the front. Though it is worth pointing out that the Republic of Tejas had few railroads and once into Tejas the deployment of the Imperial army did slow somewhat. There are two principal reasons for the Louisianan advantage in manpower early in the war; the Américan standing forces on June 4th 1859 for comparison were around 36,000, and that from a much larger population base. Firstly the wars with the native tribes to the north had caused the Empire to grow accustomed to maintaining a large standing army in case of escalations with the Indians. Secondly the revolutionary culture of the country meant that it had a system in place designed to allow for rapid call-ups of reserves (a heritage of the wars against the Confederacy).

In July of 1859 the war began in earnest when the Louisianan Army of Tejas (34,000 men) crossed the Rio Grande alongside a Tejan force of 4,500 men. This invasion force therefore was larger than the Américan army at war’s outbreak. The Allied forces were marching on Monterey, one of América’s largest and most important cities. An Américan force attempted to prevent the march on the city but was defeated in the Battle of Hidalgo. The city soon came under siege. Meanwhile a second Louisianan army (30,000) men invaded América further north threatening San Fernando, a move designed to cut América in half. With Monterrey under siege and its armies being driven back the government in Mexico City declared a national emergency and began a mobilization of manpower and resources never before seen in war on the American continent. Huge armies began assembling near the capital and in California as for the first time in North America a government declared conscription. The government in Mexico City issued a rallying cry for its people to defend the nation. British weapons and financial aid soon began pouring into the Republic as Britain sought to prevent the collapse of one of its most significant allies, though it did not join the war. In late August Américan and Louisianan forces clashed at the Battle of Aldama. This would prove to be an extremely bloody battle, with 9,000 men killed or seriously wounded after three days of fighting. Modern weaponry had made warfare a more deadly experience than ever before[FONT=&quot][1][/FONT]. The bloodbath at Aldama and the Américan announcement of conscription caused Jérôme II and his government to follow suit and called upon their citizens to fight for the Empire and the Emperor. Both sides were soon assembling huge forces. Meanwhile the armies that were currently in the field continued their respective campaigns. After Aldama (a costly victory for Louisiana) the Army of the West lacked the strength to push onto San Fernando. In September an Américan army (30,000 strong but comprised of conscripts) was sent to relieve Monterrey, they were however defeated and the city fell. The fall of Monterrey not only put the entire Américan front in jeopardy but had diplomatic consequences. The Kingdom of New Granada, whose young king Juan II’s sister Maria was married to Joseph Bonaparte heir to the Empire, had been under diplomatic pressure from France to intervene and many in Cartagena were eager to expand north. The fall of Monterrey convinced the king, and on September 29th New Granada declared war and moved north. The Américan Republic was now fighting a war on two fronts.

Dismounted Louisianan Cavalry near Monterrey August 1859:

The next few months were a slow struggle. The original Louisianan invasion, though successful, had run out of steam as the new Américan forces begun moving to the front. From October 1859 to April 1860 the Allied forces (north and south) slowly drove the Américans back. Both sides were effectively delaying as their new much larger armies assembled. By April the first “phase” of mobilization for both sides was complete as the first wave of new recruits were ready. All combatant’s armies had swelled from the beginning of the war and were getting larger each day:


The armies now being fielded by América were now close to those seen in Europe. The war continued to rage however. The Granadans, under a General Filippe Santiago, were stalled in their advance in the south, as much by geography and terrain than by the Américan forces. The front was situated on a rough line from the Gulf of Mosquitos in the north (a horrible place for any soldier) down to the Gulf of Chiriqui in the south, straight through jungles and mountain ranges. Disease became the primary cause of death in the Panamanian Front. Thousands were dying each week of a host of tropical diseases. The nature of this front soon turned to one of trench digging and artillery fire, as advances were soon being recorded in yards not miles. The only real conflict occurred around the port of San Felix, held by the Américan Republic but under a sustained siege from Granada. At sea the war between the Allies and América was underway. The Américan navy was, at war’s outbreak, the largest fleet in the Americas bar those of New England and the European great powers. The navy’s attention however was divided between Louisiana and New Granada whilst around a quarter of Américan ships were in the Pacific unable to get to the main theatre in the Caribbean. In the Pacific naval theatre however the Américan Navy (AN) had complete success, surprising the Granadan Pacific squadron at their base of Terancio and crippling it. This triumph allowed the AN to re-supply the besieged garrison at San Felix at will, though the Granadan cannon on land did pose a certain risk. In the Caribbean there was no major clash of navies. Cautious after Terancio the Granadans refused to send out their main fleet and instead were content to raid and harass the Américan shoreline and shipping; the Louisianans meanwhile were holding their ships back to protect the capital. Small scale naval engagements would however litter the Caribbean in the first year or so of war.

Fighting on the Panamanian Front: July 1860

The main front of the war continued to be in the north. In May of 1860 a titanic battle erupted near the city of Arizpe, capital of the province of the same name. The reinforced Louisianan Army of the West (90,000) was once more pushing to the sea and San Fernando. The Américans were determined to halt them with their own forces (105,000). Arizpe would be the largest battle yet fought on the North American continent. Swathes of men were cut down, be it in the blue of Louisiana (known as Imperial Blue and similar to the Prussian colour), the British-inspired khaki of the Américans or even Tejan grey. Arizpe would be a victory for the Américan army, its first major success against the Empire. The victory was a vital one as once more it prevented the Louisianans from splitting the Republic in half. Further south however the Louisianans had besieged Durango though like in Panama the war here had stalled. From June to October 1860 there would be no significant gains from either side. It was at sea that the war would continue to evolve. London was concerned that the Américans were losing and near collapse. Supply convoys from Britain were increasingly attacked by Louisianan and Granadan ships causing the British to begin escorting shipments from British Hispaniola and Jamaica to the Américan port of Veracruz. New England too upped its protection of its convoys from Saint Domingue. Britain was well aware that France was aiding its allies by sea as well and these supplies were of crucial importance to New Granada and Louisiana. In October of 1860 the Freedmen’s Republic joined the allies against América in the war after Louisianan pressure and San Felix fell in Panama. British Prime Minister Lord Eastleigh now feared the worst and announced that Britain was declaring the Caribbean a war zone and any ships bound for Louisianan or New Granada would be boarded and seized, an attempt to force the French to back down. New England announced it would support the British move. Spain, which had been a major trade partner for both nations from Cuba, was unwilling to challenge the blockade and cut trade with New Orleans and Cartagena, a move followed by most other countries. France however was not about to bow the Britain’s will and continued as had before, whilst greatly reinforcing its Caribbean squadron based out of Cumana in New Granada. Tensions continued to mount between Paris and London. In December a French convoy was attacked by New England and British warships. A trio of French warships soon arrived and in the ensuing battle both sides lost ships and men but the French withdrew. Enraged by the attack on their ships the government in Paris declared war on Britain, New England and, for good measure, América. London and Boston followed suit by joining with the Américans against Louisiana and New Granada. The war was now taking a very different turn.

The American War (1859-1863)
Part II

The entrance of the new states into the war had immediate impacts on the fighting. Louisiana was most concerned by the new developments. The Empire now found itself with hostile nations to its north (British Canada and the Native Protectorate) and to its east (New England). Lacking the manpower to engage in offensive campaigns on all three fronts the Empire opted to concentrate operations in América and along the border to the north whilst remaining on the defensive against the Yankee forces. Louisianan forces in América were reinforced and New Orleans hoped that they might be able to knock out their southern rival before the new fronts began in earnest. In January of 1861 the Louisianans assaulted Durango and finally managed to seize the city. The Américans however had now gained confidence with the entrance of the British and their allies. Unwilling to launch a potentially costly attempt to retake Durango the Américans reinforced their armies in the west near Arizpe and threw them into a counterattack against the Imperial forces. A series of pitched battles would follow as the Louisianans were driven back with terrible losses for both sides. Over a period of several months the Louisianan forces in this part of the front were driven back to the Tejan border as the Américan offensive ran out of steam. Increased forces, from Tejas, the Empire and the Freedmen Republic were all rushed to the frontline in the west and were able to stem the Américan advance.

Imperial infantry advancing at the Battle of Santa Angela east of Arizpe, April 1861.

In the Caribbean the war immediately heated up. A French naval expedition based out of New Granada engaged in a fierce battle with a combined British/New England fleet near Jamaica. The battle was a defeat for the French who retreated back to New Granada, pursued by the victors. This however seemed to be a prepared for opportunity as with the British Caribbean squadron off chasing the French the New Granadans had a window for naval activities. They launched a daring amphibious landing south of Santa Maria behind the Américan lines in Panama. Achieving total surprise the Granadan forces soon had major forces ashore. The landing threw the Américan forces in the south in panic. A full scale withdrawal now began as they faced themselves with the possibility of being surrounded. Granadan forces were hard on their heels driving their way north. The British, New Englanders and América (known as the Coalition) had now achieved the upper hand at sea in the Caribbean and further such landings were ruled out. With control at sea the Coalition navies set about imposing a blockade against Granada and Louisiana. Supplies of French weapons and ammunition, key aspects of the Allied war effort, now began to dry up.

Despite the setbacks in the south the Américan war effort in the north was in a far better state than it had been a year before. With Louisianan forces now engaged against British and Native forces from Canada and tied down preparing for a New England offensive, the Américan’s advantage in manpower became increasingly evident. In July a huge Américan army, over a quarter of a million strong launched an assault to retake Durango. Despite heroic resistance the outnumbered Imperial forces were overwhelmed and the city fell. Allied forces were now withdrawn from the Californian front to shore up the men in the south, allowing América to regain much of the land lost in the far north of the country. The Imperial war effort was unable to focus solely on these setbacks against América. From the north an Anglo-Native force had invaded the Empire. They had made limited progress however. The northern Imperial border was a string of outposts and forts, an inheritance of the Indian Wars, and those areas that did fall into enemy hands were plagued by an insurgency of Louisianan citizens. (This mirrored the successful sabotage actions taken by Américans in Imperial occupied territory from which the English term guerrilla warfare originates). The Union of the Plains meanwhile resumed its war against both Britain and Louisiana and would continue to be a thorn in both countries’ efforts. Further east there was fighting along the New England -Quebec border. This region was the most heavily fortified place in the New World after a history of conflicts. Both sides threw men at one another along this front. Though the superior numbers of the New England forces allowed them to defeat the French assault the fortifications on the French side caused their own invasion to stall to a crawl. Meanwhile with the New England front static the French moved west and invaded the far more sparsely inhabited British Canada achieving success and threatening Fort James causing a refocusing of British manpower in continental North America, bringing much needed relief to the Imperial war effort.

A French fort on the New England border.

The war continued in much this fashion for several months. The various fronts all became stalemated as the Grandan offensive was stemmed by Américan forces and slowly driven back with the war between Britain against Louisiana and France in the far north the only real dynamic front. In May of 1862 however Américan forces reached the Rio Grande in Tejas and had successfully driven back the Tejan and Imperial forces to the border. New Granada meanwhile suffered a terrible defeat at the Battle of Santander in Panama to a combined Anglo-Américan army. New England followed by achieving a major naval victory against the French Canadian fleet near Louisbourg. Gaining the upper hand the New Englanders invaded Nova Scotia and achieved a decisive victory on this front. With the French naval threat to New England ended the Dominion launched a naval expedition to seize French bases in West Africa. Britain too sought to take the war to new theatres and launched an attack on Manilla. Despite gaining the upper hand at sea the British landing force was crushed and the city did not fall. The government in Paris became increasingly concerned about the war and decided to launch two efforts to regain some momentum. First they sought to retake Saint Domingue in the Caribbean but the Allied fleets managed to beat off the attack. Secondly in order to regain some control of the situation France decided on an all or nothing naval engagement closer to home. The French fleets in Toulon and Brest were set to join and then head north to battle the Royal Navy’s Home Fleet and, if successful, invade England. Britain dispatched its navy to intercept the planned link and a titanic naval battle ensued off the coast of Cadiz in Spain. In one of the most famous naval victories in French history the French navy managed to catch the British off guard and deal a terrible blow to the Royal Navy, the remnants of the Home Fleet were scattered. The French however took serious casualties themselves and lacked the strength to mount an invasion. This fact was unknown in London however as the government was forced to recall ships from the Americas to defend from an anticipated French landing.

British warships near Manilla, capital of the French Philippines. (July, 1862).

The victory at Cadiz it could be argued was the Allies’ saving grace. Without it, and without the subsequent British withdrawal from the naval war in the New World, it is likely the Coalition would have achieved a total victory. As it is the post-Cadiz war ended out of exhaustion not conquest. At the end of 1862 Américan forces approached Seville, and fearing the capital would fall, Tejas surrendered. New Granada followed suit not long after as the government there was now concerned that if the war continued Brasil or Ecuador might take advantage. Louisiana was facing serious internal dissension as the war and the Allied blockade was causing tremendous damage to the Imperial economy. Although Imperial forces managed to halt the Américan advance only a few miles within the Empire an Anglo-Native victory in the north and the loss of their continental allies encouraged Jérôme II and his government to ask for peace. Britain too decided to push for negotiations despite the threat of French invasion now lessened, Fort James was still under siege in Canada and more importantly Britain and France were now very worried about developments in Manchuria. With their advances halted and their country exhausted by nearly four years of war the Américan government too opted for peace.

The Treaty of Havana was signed in August of 1863. Its terms represented the victory of the Coalition over the Allied forces and represented a significant power shift on the continent. The Américan Republic had suffered the most in the war and was eager for vengeance. None of the other powers however, including Britain, were willing to give América all its demands however and see it become a North American colossus. Instead América received a huge slice of Tejan territory, a more favourable border with New Granada and financial indemnities from Louisiana, Tejas and New Granada. Tejas was also officially to terminate its alliance with the Empire and become an Américan protectorate. New England, unsuccessful against Quebec, was rewarded with Nova Scotia, territory from the Empire, and it’s captured French African bases. Louisiana in turn ceded some of its northern land to the British Native protectorate and agreed on naval limitations, though after receiving a petition from the Freedmen’s Republic the small state was annexed to the Empire. France was deprived of its West African bases and parts of northern Quebec, as well as Indian Ocean islands Britain had seized and those bits of French India that had fallen in the war, though the French maintained control of the Philippines. With Britain and France now refocusing on events in East Asia, the Américan Republic and New England emerged as the two dominant powers in North America and were each determined to thrust themselves onto the world stage. The Louisianan eagle however had been humbled, its armies defeated and its economy wrecked. With tough times on the horizon and a new status quo in place the Empire was entering a difficult and troublesome period.

Crisis and Change in the East


Throughout the first half of the 19th Century the Chosun Kingdom of Korea had turned itself from a backward vassal of the decaying Qing Empire to an emerging modern industrial state. The reforms of the great king Jeongjo (1752-1832) had seen Chosun become a rising independent power in East Asia, including signing an alliance with European great power France. Under his son, Sanggye, Chosun had continued its advance. However, it was near the midpoint of the century that cracks, and significant ones, began to appear within the Chosun state. It soon became clear that the factions that had so long been dominant in the Korean government (believed humbled by Jeongjo) were still in fact live and kicking. After his ascension to the throne Sanggye had quickly come under the influence of a pro-French faction who had grown rich on the new wave of innovation and industrialization, quick to cash in on the capital and new wave of development. As Sanggye was determined to continue his father’s legacy of modernization his views and those of the pro-French faction (known as the Puleun faction from the Korean word for blue which was associated with France) were aligned and thus, quietly, their influence over the king and kingdom grew. Opposing the Puleun were an alliance of other groups and factions led by the Andong Kim clan who had been disfavored by Jeongjo, and who had long sought to regain their influence. This group were more conservative, eager to preserve traditional Korean values, and were extremely hostile to European influence of any kind. In the late 1840s and early 1850s the counter-reform group led by the Andong continually attempted to block the campaign of reform and progress through administrative and political means, but were largely unsuccessful. Becoming increasingly resentful of the country’s direction the Andong and their allies grew violent and radical. In three instances in 1851 Andong forces attacked and destroyed railroads and other signs of “European evils”, including killing foreigners. In 1852 there were nine such major instances and in 1853the number increased to forty, including the seizure and destruction of three French merchant ships in Inchon harbour. Sanggye came under great pressure both from France and the Puleun (who were losing money and resources) to crush the Andong. Sanggye hesitated unwilling to provoke serious internal conflict. In March of 1854 the Andong received word that the king was going to order the arrest of their leading members and send in the army to root out their allies; the validity of this claim has never been determined. Fearing the worst an armed force of counter-reformists stormed the palace in an attempt to kidnap the king and prevent the action. Unfortunately in the fighting the king was killed and the Andong fled. Enraged by the death of his father the new king Heonjong, who had managed to survive the incident, ordered the arrest of the Andong and all the counter-reformists. The Andong and their allies resisted and from their base of support in the southeast of the country began raising followers to drive out the Europeans and their puppets. The Korean Civil War had begun.

The Korean Civil War (1854-1856) mirrored a battle that was being waged (either with words or guns) across the world at this time, between modernizers and conservatives. The war in Chosun was however one of the most bloody examples. In the war that lasted for over two years it is estimated that over one million people died. Though the Andong had significant early victories (at Pusan in August 1854, Gunsan May 1855 and Kosong September 1855) the weight of the forces against them was too much. The majority of the modern Chosun army had sided with the king at the outbreak of hostilities, and after a few defeats, improved markedly with assistance from French military officers. The most critical moment of the war can be argued to have been the Battle of Ansan in January 1856. The Andong had attempted to drive on Seoul and take the capital but were defeated by the army and driven back. The failure to take the capital was the beginning of the end for the Andong. Despite offers Heonjong wisely decided not to accept direct French military assistance preferring instead to let his Korean forces win the war, to not give more credence to the arguments that he was a European puppet. The last Andong forces were wiped out when the city of Andong itself fell to siege in August 1856. The end of the civil war was a critical point in the history of Chosun for two key reasons. Firstly it signaled the end of Andong power in Chosun and the end of the counter-reform faction as a major force. Second, emboldened by his victory, Heonjong was determined to expand and consolidate his own power, soon turning against the Puleun faction (who he blamed in part for his father’s death). He moved to limit their political influence, though by allowing the Puleun to maintain their financial assets and by continuing the process of reform a second civil war was averted. For the next five or six years after the end of the civil war, Chosun rebuilt and continued its industrial growth. This industrialisation soon began to outstrip its resources, especially supplies of coals and iron which were being imported from Europe. Heonjong was determined however that Chosun needed to secure its own resources if it could be a true power. Fortunately a large resource rich base lay nearby, in Manchuria.

Manchuria at this point was still, de jure, under the control of the Qing Emperor. In reality however, as in the case of much of the Empire’s lands, Manchuria had a great deal of informal autonomy. Starting in the early 1850s Korean businesses and investors had secured contracts with local men of influence in Manchuria and Chosun had done a steady trade with the region. However lacking official political control of the region the government in Seoul was unable to not only claim the full financial benefits of the trade but was uneasy about the possibility of losing access to this critical supply of ore. In 1862 a fire destroyed a Korean business near Changchun. Responding with suspicious speed Heongjong ordered an army over the border to “protect Korean interests”, hoping that the weakness of the Qing state would allow Chosun to secure the region without too much bloodshed. Unfortunately the local Manchurian elite were not eager to substitute absent Chinese rule for direct Korean control and resisted, buying enough time for the Qing to mobilize men to resist the Korean move. The Manchurian War had begun. The Qing Empire, now ruled over by the Qixiang Emperor, managed to amass a large army to dispatch to the front. It was critical for the government in Beijing that they emerge victorious from the war. The last decades had not been kind to China and the country was held together by a thread. Manchuria was not the only region that had distanced itself from Imperial control, Tibet, Xinjiang and Mongolia (under Russian influence) as well as a few areas in the south of the country (under British influence) had great autonomy, and in the case of Xianjiang effective independence. The Chinese government meanwhile was beset with corruption and factional differences whilst the Dutch had cemented their control over the young emperor and the court as well as gaining extremely favourable commercial rights in the country. A defeat to Korea and the loss of Manchuria could well spell the end of the Qing.

The Qixiang Emperor, last Qing Emperor of China:

Unfortunately the result of the war against Chosun was one that, in hindsight, was very predictable. By the time the Chinese army entered Manchuria in force (in early 1863) the Korean armies had crushed most local resistance besides a few holdouts (namely around Harbin and Fengtian). Both of these cities were under siege by the Chosun armies, whose modern cannon and firearms were generations ahead of their opponents. The first real clash between Chosun and Qing armies took place in April 1863 at the Battle of Beizhen. The outdated weapons and organization of the Chinese forces became immediately apparent. The better trained and equipped Korean army (with experience from the Civil War) decimated the Chinese forces. A few months later the Korean fleet defeated their Qing counterparts near Tianjin. In this battle French warships took part and were arguably instrumental in the victory as the Korean fleet was not as superior vis-à-vis the Chinese as the land forces were. The French involvement (an effort to bolster their Korean ally and undermine the interests of the other European powers in China) drew protests from Britain, Russia and especially Holland. As the fighting wore on Franco-Dutch relations plummeted and the two countries came close to war. Meanwhile the Korean armies had gone from triumph to triumph throughout 1863. By the end of the year the Qing armies had been devastated and almost all of Manchuria was in Korean hands. In early 1864 Korean armies entered China proper and the Qing Empire looked to be on the verge of total collapse. The Dutch had dispatched an expeditionary force to protect the capital. This backfired however as the local citizens turned against the Dutch blaming them for the country’s ills and the war. Beijing was soon in a state of civil disorder as the Koreans continued to push relentlessly forward. Chosun was denied an outright victory however as the Russians entered the game. Seeing the crisis develop the government in St. Petersburg sought to secure a slice of the valuable Manchurian pie for themselves and moved troops over the border. The Koreans re-focused on this new development, sparing Beijing (from the Koreans anyway). Fierce skirmishes broke out between Korean and Russian units as the remaining parts of Manchuria were occupied. Despite valiant efforts those Korean forces who met Russians were usually defeated and pushed back. Britain and France were determined to prevent Russia from gaining control of Manchuria or for the situation to get out of control. A peace conference was called in Seoul. The Koreans, eager to make a favourable peace and to avoid war against Russia were happy to negotiate whilst the Russians were unwilling to risk war with Britain and France after their defeat in the Balkans a few decades previous. Qing representatives were also determined to make peace with Chosun as their own empire spiraled into chaos, mirroring somewhat the events that had brought down the Ottomans in the 1840s. Manchuria was to be divided roughly along the Songhua River, the south share going to Korea with Russia also making gains in the north and east.

Korean troops in action at the Battle of Beizhen (1863):

The Manchurian War (1862-64) was the death nail in the Qing coffin. With the Chinese army routed, another major defeat for the Imperial armies, and Beijing itself in chaos the myth of the Mandate of Heaven evaporated. Xinjiang and Mongolia declared independence and both were soon flooded with Russian troops eager to help “preserve the independence of these states”. Tibet broke out in rebellion. Chinese forces under General Xu, exhausted with the ineptitude and corruption of the Qing, stormed the capital and crushed the internal dissent in the city. The emperor was forced to abdicate, the Dutch troops left in the city expelled, and the corrupt and hated bureaucrats were driven from the city. Xu’s anti European manifesto earned him the ire of the Dutch who propped up a new regime in Shanghai led by the deposed Emperor’s brother Prince Chun. The British encouraged their allies in the south to emerge in the open and soon a new political force of pro-British Chinese with a desire for an Anglo style parliamentary government was cementing power from their base in Guangzhou. China was now in a state of anarchy as what was left of the empire was divided up between these three groups as well as numerous warlords. When Prince Chun began to challenge Dutch interests they encouraged a general Tung to overthrow him and gain control of the Shanghai faction. The overthrow and subsequent “disappearance” of Prince Chun was the end of the Qing Dynasty. Chosun meanwhile had gained control over a large resource rich tract of Manchuria, defeated its ancient neighbour and emerged as a strong modern state. However the poor performance against Russian forces was a source of concern for many in Seoul.

The events of the 1860s would finally set in motion the events that would trigger the rise of the final piece in the East Asian power scene: Japan. The Japanese had for centuries been in a state of isolation, cut off from the rest of the world. Numerous times during the preceding half century other nations had sought to open Japan through one method or another. The European powers of Britain, France, Spain, Portugal and Holland had all tried in this period, even the Américans had attempted a mission in 1861. None had managed to convince the ruling Japanese elite to end the isolation. The events of the Manchurian War and the Chinese implosion would however succeed in forcing change in Japan, where the foreign powers had failed. Though isolationist, Japan was not completely cut off and word of the events on the mainland spread. Many in Japan were extremely alarmed at what had happened. Not only about the collapse of China but of sudden and daunting rise of the Koreans. Those who took notice were split into two camps: those who saw the trouble as the result of what happens when Asians allow Europeans to intervene in their affairs, and the others who were convinced that modernisation meant survival and strength whilst remaining in their current situation would spell death for Japan. The ruling Tokugawa clan belonged to the former camp and were determined to maintain control over Japan. As details continued to arrive about the events to the west the modernizers grew bolder. The modernizers had one key ally, the Emperor. Upon finding out about the collapse of the Qing and the forced abdication of the Chinese emperor, and then the disappearance of Prince Chun, the Japanese Emperor Kōmei, became determined that his dynasty would survive where the Qing had failed. Growing fearful that the Tokugawa would seek to rid themselves of the emperor the reformers, led by the Satsuma, Choshu and Tosa, managed to smuggle the emperor out of the capital and take him to Hagi. Free of the capital, the Emperor was able to declare himself against the Tokugawa and call for their removal from power. The brief struggle that followed saw the collapse of the Tokugawa Shogunate and is known in Japanese history as the Kōmei Restoration. Freed from the control of the Tokugawa, the Emperor and his allies set about a period of forced reform along the lines copied from Korea. This was not universally accepted by his people and in 1867, 1868 and 1869 revolts broke out against the new order, though all were put down. The most serious rising was in 1870 when an alliance of samurai, Tokugawa supporters, and other dissatisfied actors rose up and were only defeated in 1872 by a combination of Imperial forces supported by the British Royal Navy. The British had been the first to respond to events in Japan. The Dutch were too pre-occupied in China, and unlike the British, they lacked the resources to act in both China and Japan simultaneously. The French meanwhile were focused on Korea and expanding their African empire. Many rebels however managed to escape to Ezo (Hokkaido) and set up a kingdom in exile there ruled over by Matsudaira, who had headed the Aizu clan during the war. The Anglo-Japanese forces were unable to assault the island kingdom as Matsudaira had asked for Russian protection which the government in St. Petersburg granted and this secured the immediate security of the breakaway kingdom. The rebellion of 1870-72 resulted in the strengthening of the power of the emperor over the feudal daimyo as well as the increased focus on reforming the military. The Emperor was grateful to the British, for their military support against the rebels and for the import of materials, and his son was sent to Britain to study in and learn about this other great island nation (along with a host of other Japanese elite) and in 1874 the Anglo-Japanese alliance was signed. Japan was now on its way to becoming a modern state to challenge its rival in Korea. The Koreans however had a forty year head start.

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Queens, Kings and Republics 1850-1880

The Four Queens
Part I

The thirty year period from 1845 to the mid 1870s is known in European history as the Age of the Four Queens. As an odd historical occurrence during this period four major European nations, and consequently four of the strongest world powers, were each ruled by a female monarch. Each one of these queens would be an exemplary monarch who would lead her country and people through a period of great change and would forever leave their mark on their nation and the world. In his book The Four Crowns (1845-1870), French author Thomas Dessal made a very popular metaphor in which he compared each queen to one of the four playing card Queens, one from each suit (hearts, clubs, diamonds and spades).

The Queen of Diamonds: Charlotte of the United Kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland (1847-1872)

Charlotte [1] ascended to the throne in 1847 after her father, George V, died of heart complications after reigning for seventeen years. Charlotte was born in 1820 and was her father’s only surviving child. The Queen was heavily influenced by modern liberal reformist ideas and wanted to improve the lives of her people, whilst simultaneously strongly believing in expanding Britain’s reach in the world to spread civilization to the native cultures. Charlotte’s reign was a period of immense change, challenge and progress for Britain and its Empire. The first years of her reign saw Britain engaged in two near simultaneous conflicts on either sides of the globe. In North America Britain was engaged in the Blackfoot War (1848-1851) which followed another round of conflict between the native tribes and the Louisianan Empire. The Blackfoot War saw the British Native Protectorate split as the Union of the Plain broke off to independence. Although this was a setback for Britain, its victory against the Kingdom of Nagpur in India in the Nagpur War (1848-1850) more than compensated for the earlier defeat. Nagpur was always the less developed of the three independent Indian states, not as advanced as Mysore or as powerful as Delhi. When the war came Britain, joined later by Mysore, sought to capitalise on that state’s implosion into civil conflict in 1848. Nagpur was crushed and the lands divided up between Britain and Mysore; thereby unifying British lands on the east and west of the subcontinent. This victory combined with the defeat of a rebellion in Baroda, and the subsequent annexation of that state, made Britain paramount in India. Queen Charlotte visited India after these victories in 1853 wherein British Governor General of Bengal, Lord Anthony Cameron, presented her with a fantastic diamond necklace that was to become almost synonymous with the Queen throughout her reign, hence why Thomas Dessal dubbed her the Queen of Diamonds.

Queen Charlotte (1849):

The 1850s were a decade of internal domestic tension for Britain. Ireland had been fully integrated into the United Kingdoms in 1818. Since then Anglo-Irish relations had developed well. In the late 1840s however Ireland began to suffer from serious overpopulation and small scale famines broke out [2]. Aid from Britain was forthcoming and helped to stem most of the scarcity but a small rebellion broke out near Cork in one of the worst affected areas. The rebellion was crushed in 1852 and the effects of the famine were soon fully placated. The quick British response to the issue as well as the show of force against the rebellious minority earned Westminster much good will in Ireland [3]. A more serious problem was the Declarist Movement. The Declarists took their name for the Declaration of Public Good written in Manchester in 1855. The Declaration called for full male suffrage (most men having been given the right to vote by the Reform Act of 1796), reform in Parliament and better working conditions as though the industrial revolution had brought great change to Britain and made it strong and influential, many workers lived in appalling conditions. The Declarists soon had widespread support throughout much of the North, Scotland and Wales and Parliament began to get nervous. In 1857 Queen Charlotte made what many consider her greatest service to Britain. She delivered a speech in Bath, reprinted in all major newspapers, backing the Declarist Movement and calling for the adoption of their ideals. The Bath Speech won Queen Charlotte huge support amongst the Declarists and common people. Importantly the Declarist movement had been on the verge of being hijacked by the rising British Republican movement, which was dealt a serious blow by the rise in Charlotte’s popularity. The 1858 British General Election was fiercely contested by the three main British parties. The Tories, who were popular with the rural elite and emphasised protectionist trade policies, the Liberal party which drew support from the urban middle class, was in favour of free trade and devolved government to the colonies and the Republican Party which unsurprisingly pushed for an end to the monarchy and widespread populist reform. The fallout of the Declarist Movement and the Bath Speech saw the Liberal Party sweep to power, the Tories lose around a third of their seats and the Republican Party near obliterated. Liberal leader Lord William Thompson became Prime Minister and would be a firm ally of the Queen throughout her reign. In 1859 Queen Charlotte married Prince Frederick of Prussia (the third son of Wilhelm II), who had visited London a year before. The wedding was hugely popular in the country as Frederick was, surprisingly for a Prussian reform minded (perhaps this was why his father was so keen to send him to London) and preferred to remain in the background of politics leaving the Queen to the forefront. The couple were to have three children Edward, Arthur and Elizabeth.

Prime Minister Lord William Thompson:

In the foreign sphere Charlotte’s reign also saw notable developments. Britain was to expand its Empire throughout the world. Australia, the largely unexplored continent, was settled proper in this period and ended up being divided into five distinct provinces which each developed various levels of autonomous government: New South Wales, Western Territory, East Albion, Charlotte and North Australia. In Africa Britain expanded its control up the east coast and into the interior to help better secure the root to India. Here it waged a series of conflicts against the local natives which saw Britain triumph again and again. At the same time British territories in the Gold Coast and in the southwest saw a wave of settlement. It was in North America that Britain was to face the most pressing issues however. The American War (1859-1863) saw Britain and its North American territory as well as New England fight against France and Louisiana. In New England there was a sense of self-worth after defeating France and the Empire which saw a surge in belief that the Dominion could manage its own affairs. After the New England election of 1869 Westminster and Boston passed the Act of Self-Government which granted complete independence to the former Dominion [4]. The popularity of the Queen (who had visited New England in 1866) as well as a desire to maintain some semblance of link between the two countries led the New Englanders to accept to maintain the Queen as ceremonial head of state, and she was to be represented by the Royal Representative in Boston, appointed by Westminster. This triggered a similar debate in Britain’s North American territories in Canada. The Canadians now advocated for autonomous government. The Liberal government, with royal support, was inclined to oblige. But within Canada itself there was disagreement on how/if the reform should go ahead. In the end New Foundland was to remain directly ruled by Britain as they were unenthusiastic about federation with distant Canada, whilst the rest of the territory was to become the Dominion of Canada run by an elected government in Newcastle, though the powers of Newcastle were greatly limited, more so than Dublin or Boston had been before 1869. In the southwest of Canada was the region of Columbia. In Columbia, named for the river, they did not see themselves as Canadian, rather a different people entirely (indeed they had more Spanish and native influences than the rest of Canada), yet still British. They chose not to join the Canadians and were granted their own separate Dominion of Columbia, centered in the city of Charlotte named for the young Queen back when she was still heir. By the end of Charlotte’s reign Britain had expanded its empire in Africa as well as in the Pacific, gained a foothold in South China after the Qing collapsed, allied with newly emergent Japan, reformed its government in North America, secured the loyalty of Ireland, established strong ties with the newly independent New England, embraced the liberal reforms of the Declarist movement and enhanced the prestige and security of the monarchy. When Queen Charlotte died in 1872 her state funeral procession in London was attended by over two million people and is still regarded as Britain’s greatest queen.

The Queen of Hearts: Isabel of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves (1846-1871)

Isabel succeeded to the Portuguese throne in 1846 following the death of her father Francisco. In Brasil, where she had served as the Princess and been an apt and celebrated ruler, she was succeeded by her son Miguel [5]. Isabel was a hugely popular figure in Brasil and this popularity carried over to Portugal upon her ascension and she was greatly loved by her people; hence the title Queen of Hearts. Unlike Charlotte, Queen Isabel did not inherit a country at war and was able to focus, at first, on domestic developments. In Brasil Isabel had helped pioneer the development of railroads, industry and the transition to a modern industrial state. In Portugal she continued this work. Encouraging the arrival of engineers from Brasil, Britain and North America, Isabel and her government launched a campaign to encourage the modernisation of Portugal. Ultimately successful this programme would last the duration of her reign and beyond.

Queen Isabel (1853):

On the foreign front Isabel’s reign saw the expansion of Portuguese bases in Africa. Portugal had already established colonies on either side of the continent, in Angola and Moçambique. Both these territories were enlarged along the coast and a slight move into the interior. Portuguese explorers, including the famous Dr. Rodrigo Manuel, mapped and explored the interior of the continent between the two areas of settlement, though not all were successful. Isabel herself was said to be greatly interested in the “Dark Continent” and was a great patron of exploration. The first real test of Isabel’s reign came in 1855. Miguel, Prince of Brasil, though a capable administrator lacked the political savvy and popular support that his mother had had. Outmanoeuvred by politicians in Rio Miguel soon found himself running out of support as ambitious men attempted to increase their own power. With Miguel’s influence lessened many men in Rio sought to enhance their own power by removing the connection to Portugal and from the base in Sao Paulo declared in an independent Republic of Brasil. The Brasilian elite were split and some sided with Rio others with Sao Paulo. Miguel dithered and was uncertain how to respond, the period of hesitation allowed the rebels to develop a proper structure and gain control over much of the south. The rebels however had not counted on Isabel’s resolve. Furious at news of the rising Isabel and her government launched a large expeditionary force to Brasil to help assist the loyalists. Isabel herself also arrived in Rio to support the cause. Still a much loved figure in Brasil, Isabel’s arrival turned public opinion against the rebels. With his mother present and reinforcements coming in from Portugal, Miguel finally revealed his true talent: warfare. In a string of battles in a campaign lasting to 1857 Miguel crushed the rebels whilst his mother worked her strings politically behind the scenes, undermining the rebels, winning over popular support (now almost entirely with the loyalist cause) and warning off Brasil’s neighbours from intervening. By June 1857 the rebels had been obliterated, the leaders hanged, and Miguel’s rule now secured as was the union with Portugal. Isabel returned to Lisbon (though she left one of her most competent advisors Jose Ricardo Carlos to assist Miguel). Immediately after the ending of the Brasilian Rebellion, Portugal was involved in another conflict in the Indian Ocean. Tensions had long been mounting with the Netherlands over competing territorial claims in Africa and trade rivalries in India and the Indies. With Brasil in revolt the Dutch had chosen to enforce their claims on Moçambique. Unfortunately for them the rising collapsed and Isabel was able to turn her attentions to the east. From 1857-1858 Portugal and Holland fought an undeclared war in southeast Africa and at sea. The conflict eventually ended in stalemate though Isabel had managed to conduct what could be considered an excellent PR campaign in Europe, winning diplomatic support from Britain, Denmark and most of the German states. Consequently the settlement benefited Portuguese claims over those of Holland.

The final years of Isabel’s reign were less dramatic, with two notable exceptions. In 1863 in response to attacks on Portuguese interests in the country, Isabel sanctioned an intervention in Morocco. The Moroccan Expedition saw the ruling elite cast out and a puppet regime put in place, one more favourable to Portuguese interests. In the late 1860s the country saw increased popular agitation for a more representative and influential Parliament, inspired by the Declarist Movement in Britain. Isabel, taking a lead from Charlotte, took the side of the people and pushed for the acceptance of their demands. Universal male suffrage was granted in Portugal and Brasil. With both Parliaments also gaining increase powers. Isabel’s most important contribution to the constitutional reform of 1870, and some say her greatest legacy, was her campaign for women’s political rights. Despite heated opposition Isabel utilised her public support and political cunning to grant property-owning women the right to vote in both sides of the Atlantic. Isabel died in 1871 and was succeeded by his son Miguel, whose own son Francisco, took over in Rio. Isabel is still regarded as a great leader, a beloved queen and a champion of female suffrage and her name is synonymous with the campaign for women’s rights even to this day.

[1] Note this is not OTL Princess Charlotte, this is the daughter of a fictitious George V.
[2] There is no potato famine ITTL. Interestingly enough it was Frederick the Great of Prussia who pioneered the use of the potato in Europe so without him there is no widespread Irish dependence on the potato. There is more diversification in foods, though the lack of widespread potato farming has slowed population growth. However with emigration to the Americas less than OTL (due to the constant conflicts on that continent) Ireland still suffers from starvation in places due to overpopulation.
[3] The granting of Catholic Emancipation back in 1796 along with greater autonomy for Ireland early on has considerably improved the Anglo-Irish relationship over OTL.
[4] The political developments in New England will be covered more fully in an update later on about New England and the CAS.
[5] See earlier update on South America


The Four Queens
Part II: The Queen of Spades
The Queen of Spades: Alexandra I of the Russian Empire (1846-1873)

Alexandra I succeeded her father, Peter IV, in 1846. Alexandra’s inheritance was the world’s largest contiguous empire, and one that was on the threshold of history. Externally the empire had just emerged from the Second Balkan War where its armies had rallied the Slavic nations and threatened the gates of Constantinople itself, and were only pushed back by the direct intervention of the world’s two global powers Britain and France. Domestically Russia had enjoyed a half century of reform and modernisation that had seen it pulled into the industrial age and become a constitutional monarchy, yet tensions still remained within and outside the government.​
Though the Imperial Army had fought capably during the Second Balkan War it had not managed to overcome the coalition of forces opposed against it, British, French, Turk and others. The Russian navy had suffered at the hands of the allied forces in the war, specifically the humbling defeat at Varna in January of 1843. The Russian Black Sea fleet had been annihilated whilst the larger, yet still backward, Baltic Fleet was effectively contained in the Baltic by Britain and its Danish ally. Alexandra’s first domestic efforts were focused on rebuilding and improving the Imperial military. The Russian army was reduced in size to a standing force of around 675,000 men, still the world’s largest army, to allow for streamlining and reduce the unwieldy size of the army of her father. Alexandra backed the more reformist generals and her reign saw a series of developments in the army. The supply system was expanded and better engineers and administrators were hired and trained at the new Military Administration School in St. Petersburg. A new command system was introduced breaking down old rivalries and encouraging a more merit based system of promotion, to an extent of course. New modern rifles, cannon and other weapons were introduced. At sea the navy was also to be improved. By 1860 the size of the army had climbed back to around 800,000 but now was much more effective. The Black Sea fleet was rebuilt, inspired by lessons taken from the Second Balkan War, and later from the American War in the New World. The Baltic Fleet too saw its older ships scrapped and a new wave of shipbuilding burst forth, stimulating much economic growth.

New warships of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, 1859:

The shipbuilding and military reforms of Alexandra went hand in hand with the development of the modern Russian economy. Industrial growth, which had begun in earnest under Peter IV, exploded during the reign of Alexandra. The state’s encouragement of new industries and technologies, compounded with the lessening of restrictions and the repeal of the crushing taxes on businesses and the emerging middle class, saw Russian industrial output more than triple in this period, so that by 1860 Russia’s share of world manufacturing output stood at 13%, second only to Britain. Importantly the total GNP and the GNP per capita, of the Russian Empire were to rise proportionality to the other nations so that by 1860 Russia’s total GNP was larger than Britain’s, though per capita it remained just behind the leading European powers. Urbanisation increased as well as industrial advancements created more jobs and opportunities in the cities, whilst simultaneously reducing the need for huge numbers of rural workers. The great Russian cities, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Minsk, Kiev, Smolensk and others grew rapidly, all tied together by the Russian rail network. It was whilst travelling in Russia and observing the construction of a railroad between Moscow and Smolensk that the author Thomas Dessal was so impressed with the huge numbers of Russian workers shovelling, hammering and constructing that he granted the Tsarina the title “Queen of Spades” to reflect the huge host of workers at her call, this is why today the Queen of Spades is known as the Tsarina in many card games. Plus he had already named Queen Anne of France the Queen of Clubs, inspired in part by the similarities between the “club” and the royal fleur-de-lis (indeed it is during this period that the playing card iconography of the “club” came to resemble the fleur-de-lis, and indeed is sometimes referred to as the lily). Politically Alexandra also responded to increased pressure for Finnish autonomy. Alexandra believed that granting increased powers to the Finns would win their loyalty and ease pressure on her officials there. In 1857 Alexandra passed the Finnish Autonomy act granting Helsinki autonomy in domestic affairs though it was still clearly subservient to the Russian Duma in St. Petersburg and the Tsarina, who was made Grand Duchess of Finland.

Alexandra I of Russia:

By the midpoint of the Tsarina’s reign the Russian Duma had become separated into three factions. The Moderates, led by Count Nikolai, favoured the reforms of the Tsarina, pushed for increased modernisation, yet were conservative at heart believing in the divine right of the monarch, the importance of the Orthodox church and a cautious but assertive foreign policy. To their right stood the Reactionaries, led by Counts Alexi and Ivanovic, who opposed the reforms as they believed the position of the aristocracy was under threat from the twin forces of the Tsarina and the common people. On the left of the spectrum were the Liberals, who pushed for greater reform in the government, and contained secret republican sentiments. In 1859 there were rumours that the Tsarina was contemplating pushing for universal male suffrage and making the Duma a true elective body, inspired by the efforts in the west European states. For the Reactionaries this, in addition to the Finnish autonomy and the other hated reforms, was a step too far. In September of 1859 Reactionaries, backed by army units (bribed, encouraged or threatened) stormed the Winter Palace and shut down the Duma. The Tsarina had been tipped off however and had fled the Palace just in time. As the Reactionaries sought to gain control of the capital, harder said than done, the Tsarina and a few Duma members who had managed to flee, headed south where they arrived at an army camp about fifty miles south of the capital. The arrival of the Tsarina, not hiding in a carriage, but riding into camp dressed as a Tsarina and with fire in her eyes has become a legendary scene in Russian history. Rallying the awed soldiers she led them in a counter-stroke. Joining with loyalist forces still fighting in St. Petersburg (which was in a state of near anarchy) and the naval squadrons in the harbour the Tsarina and her forces drove the Reactionaries out of the city and cornered the remnants of their forces near Narva crushing them and arresting the survivors. The remaining leaders of the putsch were publicly executed and their movement annihilated. Flush from her victory and with the remaining Duma cowed by the rising, the Tsarina announced suffrage for male property owners (Russia was not quite ready for millions of ex-serfs to vote she decided), a constitution, and a reformed semi-elected Duma. 1859 marked a watershed in Russian history. The battle between conservatives and reformers had reached a turning point with the forces of reform emerging triumphant, Russia would never be the same again. In the final years of her reign the Russian economic growth would slow and a temporary slump in the economy took over, the sheer speed and cost of the early progress caught up with the Empire. Still the inevitable rise would soon continue.

In foreign policy terms the major events of Alexandra’s reign occurred in Asia. In 1848 Alexandra pioneered the purchase of the lands north of the Amur river from China, as the old Empire was seeing its influence eroded by the European powers. In the mid-1850s and early 1860s Alexandra was eager to assert the new Russian army and was supported in this by much of the Russian establishment. Three campaigns in Central Asia were launched, decimating all but two of the independent states there. The remaining two survived for the time being due to a combination of fears of overextension, the mountainous terrain and a re-focusing to Manchuria. Russian Alayska was to rise in prominence in these years. Immigration to the colony had risen steadily in the last few decades. But in the early 1860s, after the Reactionary coup, the Tsarina and her government decided on the idea of using Alayska as a penal colony, sending criminals and political agitators (such as former Reactionaries) to the distant tundra. Consequently the population doubled between 1850 and 1870. The discovery of gold in 1872 further encouraged settlement and development, though rising border skirmishes between Russian settlers/pioneers and those of Britain and its Canadian and Columbian Dominions were a concern. In 1864 the Tsarina capitalised on the collapse of the Qing to established protectorates of Xinjiang and Mongolia greatly enhancing Russian influence in East Asia. Russian forces also secured northern Manchuria and performed excellently against Korean forces in the brief fighting between them. Again, Russian gains were limited by Anglo-French intervention (this time diplomatic). Russian foreign policy going forward was aimed, in part, to drive a wedge between London and Paris. Anglo-Russian competition over Persia was to begin in the latter periods of the Tsarina’s reign as Alexandra also made overtures to the Delhi Sultanate as a means to limit British power in India. By the time of her death in 1873 Russia had become a modern industrial giant poised to make its mark on the world stage.

Russian forces in Central Asia, 1862:

The Four Queens
Part III: The Queen of Clubs

The Queen of Clubs: Anne of France (1848-1874)
List of French monarchs since the Four Years War:
· Louis XV (1715-1773)
· Louis XVI (1773-1809)
· Louis XVII (1809-1828)
· Louis XVIII (1828-1836)
· Charles X (1836-1848)
· Anne (1848-1874)

Of all the four queens the succession of Anne to the French throne was the most turbulent. To fully explain the circumstances behind the Succession Crisis and the Jacobite Rising of 1848 it is necessary to recount the events of the years leading up to 1848. Anne’s father, and king of France since 1836, was Charles X. Charles had had two children, Louis his son and heir, and Anne and no living siblings. Anne had originally been betrothed to marry Prince Ferdinand of Aragon but the young royal had died and Anne remained yet unmarried (the possibilities of what would have happened had Anne married Ferdinand as intended are fascinating to entertain). Regardless in 1846 Louis, the Dauphin of France died of a sudden fever, throwing the French state and government into panic. There were now two likely candidates to the French throne to succeed Charles X. One of course was his only remaining child Anne, the other was the aging Charles Emmanuel V of Sardinia, whose claim to the throne came from his mother. Charles Emmaneul was the current Jacobite claimant after the 1809 death of Henry Benedict Stuart and the death of his own father in 1828. Anne was already the darling of the more reformist and progressive members of the French aristocracy and parliament. The reactionaries on the other hand were divided, some favoured Anne as the legitimate heiress, whilst others now secretly backed the Jacobite cause as the old Jacobins suddenly began to emerge from the shadows. Communications between leading Jacobins and Charles in Turin began in attempt to gauge Charles Emmanuel’s interest in becoming King of France, something that is now clear Charles Emmanuel was keen on. The plot began to grow as Jacobites prepared to prevent the ascension of Anne and invite Charles to “invade” France, with their support, and reclaim the throne. The Jacobites believed the paralysis of government (with the ailing Charles X still clinging on though in no real state to run the country) and general distrust of a female monarch would allow them to gather enough support to pave the way for the Jacobite succession (something ironically mirroring the Glorious Revolution in Britain two centuries previous).

The French government increasingly became factionalised between Jacobites, those reformers supporting Anne (known as Legitimists) and an increasingly shrinking collection of neutral groups. In 1848 events came to a head. On May 3rd Charles Emmanuel died suddenly, and was succeeded by his son Victor Amadeus, who Jacobite agents assured their Parisian allies was as supportive of the mission as his father had been. Jacobins accelerated their plans and pro-Jacobite militias started forming in Paris and in the southeast near the Sardinian border. On July 3rd Charles X died. In his will he declared his daughter Anne as his legitimate successor. Yet Anne appeared to stall. She was out of the capital in Versailles with many of her supporters and seemed to dither on a course of action. Sensing their opportunity whilst there was no actual governing monarch the Jacobites rose. They sought to storm the capital, seize Parliament and gain control of the country. The Jacobites and their supporters took to the streets of Paris and marched on Parliament. Upon arriving at the Parliamentary Palace they found themselves facing not a disorganised panic, but cannon and troops loyal to Anne. The Jacobites had been betrayed.

Anne of France:

It is now clear that Anne had long been aware of the Jacobin plan, since the death of her brother in fact. She had been counselled by her supporters to, whilst her father was alive, to arrest the Jacobites before they grew in number and destroy the coup in its infancy. Anne however had disagreed, she preferred to allow the Jacobite insurgency to grow thus drawing all her potential political opponents together allowing for her to crush all her enemies in one sweep, as she is reported to have put it to “draw out the wolves”. The Jacobites had long been compromised by Legitimist agents. Indeed the new King Victor of Sardinia had no intention of working with the Jacobites and honouring his father’s plan, which he had dubbed as a fantasy. But Anne’s agents in Turin had mislead the Jacobin faction hoping to push them into acting. In addition Anne wasn’t in Versailles at all but had been in Paris, in the Parliamentary Palace. As the Jacobite leaders poured into the square outside Parliament Anne was informed that “Jacobite Revolution was at the door”. She responded in the now immortal phrase “Revolution? Let them taste a whiff of grapeshot”. In six minutes the bewildered and outmanoeuvred Jacobites were decimated by cannon and musket fire. None survived. The gathering Jacobite forces in the southeast were surrounded by superior Legitimist forces and those that did not surrender were destroyed. In one stroke Anne had secured her rule, annihilated any political opposition, ended the Jacobite threat (as after receiving a demanding letter from Paris Victor Amadeus renounced any claim to the French throne forever) and established herself as a cunning and imposing figure. With the Jacobites destroyed and Parliament cowed Anne demanded the passing of a formal change to the constitution allowing for the succession of a female to the French throne. There was little opposition. The Parliament members only had to look out the window to see the rains trying to wash away the blood on the square and the heads of the Jacobite lords impaled on the Palace walls to see the fate of opposition. Who now would dare oppose Anne, the Lioness of France?

With her rule secured Anne now would lead France for nearly three decades in which she would leave a legacy that would never fade. The first principal matter for Anne was to secure her line and legitimise her rule. To do this she made public her father’s will naming her heir and married Prince Henry of Poland. Anne was not about to relinquish control over to her husband however so Henry was given the title Prince Consort of France, and had little political power. The couple were by all accounts very happy and had three children Louis (born 1849), Francois (1850) and Sophie (1852). Anne apparently resented having to hand over what little power she did to Henry during her pregnancy and when her husband died suddenly in 1854 Anne never remarried, though Henry was afforded a lavish funeral. The first test of Anne’s resolve came in 1854 in the Korean Civil War. Anne remained committed to the Franco-Korean alliance and sent resources and support to the Korean government forces which triumphed. The next test came in the American War (1859-1863). Anne committed France to fighting on the side of Louisiana and New Granada. Indeed Anne was instrumental in the decision to betroth Prince Francois to Princess Marie of the Louisianan Empire. French forces were competent in the war and of course achieved the legendary naval triumph over Britain at Cadiz. Anne was reportedly very impressed with Cadiz and personally visited the crews of the victorious fleet at Brest at war’s end. Anne was to remain an advocate of French naval power and was to push for the construction of new shipwrights and funding for the fleet. France launched its first major ironclad warship 1863, named in her honour: La Reine Anne. The new warship and other French vessels were dispatched by Anne to East Asia to aid her Korean allies in the Manchurian War. Like her father she was also wary of Russian power and co-operated with Britain to force the bear to back down in Manchuria. Anne also visited Quebec in 1868 in an historic visit re-affirming the importance of Quebec, which after all had been directly integrated into France in 1826. She also had a fascination with French India, though she never went. Her second son Francois did travel there, and in 1868 and Anne named him the new Prince in India when the predecessor died. Anne was determined to expand French imperial power. The grasp on the Philippines was secured. New colonies were established in West Africa. Anne however was concerned about the Whahedyi Arab Sultanate and sought to distant her country from the radical Islam in control there that she found distasteful. In 1869 Anne, wary of Portuguese and Aragonese influence in North Africa, exploited a power struggle in the Sultanate of Tunis to bring that nation under French control. Anne envisioned the creation of a French African Empire stretching from Tunis to the Ivory Coast. Eager to secure the passage to India and Asia, Anne sent an expedition to conquer Aden in 1871 which was successful.

The French Warship La Reine Anne near Korea:

Domestically Anne, like the other monarchs, pushed for the reform and modernisation of her country. Anne reformed the Parliament making it semi-elected, at first by granting all property-owning males the right to vote (1863) then universal male suffrage in 1872, her plans for female suffrage did not materialise before her death in 1874. French industry in the resource rich northeast and along the Rhine grew rapidly during her reign and advancements in the French rail network and other technologies tied the kingdom together. French control of her two German protectorates was secured and Anne re-affirmed France’s ties with its traditional continental allies, Aragon, Sardinia and Saxobavaria. When Anne died she was succeeded by her son who became Louis XIX. France had been forever changed by Anne whose crushing of the Jacobite Rising in 1848 became one of the great moments of French history. Her expansion of the French Empire, domestic reforms and encouragement of French naval strength and industry saw France retain its position as one of the leading global powers, poised on the brink of a new era in history.

The Rise of Nationalism

Nationalism as a political force had begun to rear its head during the Age of Revolutions. The destruction of the old order and the wars that swept Europe kindled the first inklings of the new movement. It was however the Fourth Silesian War and its aftermath that paved the way for the rise of Nationalism as a political force, one that would reshape Europe. The Polish resistance to the Coalition during the war as it was invaded by Prussia, Austria and Russia was one of the clearest signs of Nationalist sentiment in a political environment. The Polish state’s efforts to use a sense of nation, a sense of uniqueness, of belonging to a distinct Polish people, to rally the country in the face of the three front invasion demonstrated the emerging notions of a link between state and people, or nation. The Whahedyi movement in the Middle East amongst the Arab peoples also undoubtedly played its part in nurturing the development of this idea. Italian Unification, the Slavic rebellions against the Ottomans and the political developments in Austria-Hungary all had roots in this national movement.

The year 1865 was a watershed in history and the nationalist movement. In this year three works were published that thrust Nationalism into centre stage and marked the emergence of the modern nationalist cause. The first was the essay The State and the Nation by British author Stanley Chilcott citing the relationship between the people (the nation) and the state. Chilcott argued that the old world of the aristocracy and the old dynasties was to give way to a new system based not on class or old loyalties, but on nationalism. He foresaw the overthrow of the current status quo and its replacement by a series of nation states created by mass populist movements, governed along republican and classless lines. The second was the pamphlet Onward Slavic Peoples! by the Serbian intellectual Nikolai Boskovic. Boskovic highlighted the similarities between the Slavic peoples and called upon them to overthrow their non-Slavic oppressors be they “German, Magyar or Turk”. Boskovic argued that the future of the Slavic peoples lay in driving out non-Slavic peoples from rightful Slav lands and a fraternal union between the three great Slavic states Poland (which he called West Slavia) a Serb-led Balkan union (South Slavia) and Russia (Great Slavia). Boskovic’s views became very popular in Serbia and parts of the Balkans as well as in some Russian circles, the Poles were generally not impressed however.

The third work was the book Was ist ein Deutscher? (What is a German?) by the Saxobavarian writer Carl Brandt. Brandt argued that there was only one true German civilization, and that was epitomized by the Saxobavarian state. He decried what he called the three “false” Germanies. Prussia he denounced as the bastardised spawn of “Teutons, Slavs and Balts” who were no more German than the French or Chinese. The League of the Rhine was seen as being contaminated by the evils of commercial greed, Dutch depravities and an unhealthy republican spirit. Austria he said had abandoned its German identity to “marry the Magyars”. No, Brandt claimed, the only true Germany was that of monarchy, Christian teaching (he seemed to make no major distinction between Protestant or Catholic), conservatism and true German ethics. He concluded that, “German brothers you salvation is not Berlin, Vienna or Dortmund. To Munich you must look. Germans must come together behind the great state embodied there. German unity, the unification of the German people, nation and state, lies with Munich, Munich and the Wettin king. Together mighty Germany shall rise”. Brandt’s arguments spread like wildfire throughout Germany. Brandtism was obviously hugely popular in Saxony-Bavaria, but it also drew great support throughout south and central Germany. Brandtism would have great impact in all the great German capitals as the major German powers each were in turn affected by this new ideology. The Nationalist Age had arrived.

Saxobavarian Intellectual Carl Brandt:

The Three Eagles
Poland, Prussia and Austria

The Kingdom of Poland

Poland had suffered greatly as a result of the Fourth Silesian War (1830-1834). Not only had the country been invaded by Austria, Prussia and Russia near simultaneously but in the peace conference at Madrid it had lost huge slices of territory: Posen to Prussia, Galicia to Austria and Ruthenia, Courland and more to Russia. Poland under the reigns of Henry IV (1823-1847), Louis III (1847-1870) and Michael II (1870-) was a country constantly preparing for the next war. Polish policies during this period were concerned solely with one goal in mind: survival. The clearest lesson for Poland following the defeat in 1834 was that Poland simply could not fight a war against Austria, Prussia and Russia again. Even with help from outside powers war with these three nations would result in the death of the Polish state. Poland therefore had to somehow find, at least, one friend from the three neighbouring powers and prevent another alliance between Vienna, Berlin and St. Petersburg or Poland would disappear into history. Fortunately the three powers were already falling out by the time of the Madrid Congress, Prussia and Austria were both concerned about Russian power and Russia was increasingly focused on Asia and the Balkans.

Poland then had an opportunity to break its diplomatic encirclement. Who should they turn too? The French ambassador Antoine Gasper summed up the mood of the average Pole when he wrote in 1836 that, “the Poles hate the Prussians, despise the Austrians and loathe the Russians”. King Louis III of Poland wrote in 1860 that “to keep the bear at bay, one must befriend the wolf”. Poland resented both Austria and Prussia for their taking of Polish lands but it was for Russia that the greatest hatred and fear was reserved. For centuries Russia had interfered in Polish affairs and taken slice after slice of Polish territory. The ferocity of the fighting between Russian and Pole in the 1830-34 war was bloody and personal; Poland would never consent to submitting to St. Petersburg. Louis III succeeded however in breaking the diplomatic encirclement. Wilhelm II of Prussia was open to a rapprochement with Poland. Prussia had no wish to seize further Polish lands. Instead Berlin was concerned about the rising power of Saxobavaria (compounded with the rise of Brandtism in southern and central Germany), continued French control of German lands in the southwest and the continuing rise of Russian power. In 1857 Wilhelm II and Louis III met at a conference in Konigsberg, where they signed the Treaty of Friendship. In which both recognised their established border and sought to enhance co-operation and positive relations. There was resentment in Poland for writing off Polish territories in the west, but the realists in Warsaw knew that Poland needed a friend, better admitting Posen was lost than antagonising Berlin. Wilhelm’s successor George I was eager to develop further the relationship and, worried about the developments in Germany [1], George pushed for a stronger relationship between Berlin and Warsaw. And he got it. To Poland’s relief in 1863 the Prusso-Polish Alliance was signed. The signing of this alliance marked an end to an era of Polish diplomacy. For near a century Poland had been tied to France through the Bourbon family ties, the alliance with Prussia signalled a move away from the French relationship to a more pragmatic alliance structure with Prussia.

With the diplomatic backing of an ally Poland had breathing space. Internally Poland was to become an increasingly nationalistic state. The Poles rejected the Pan-Slavic ideas of Boskovic almost unanimously. The idea of any kind of union or co-operation with Russia was abhorrent. Instead a national Polish identity was cultivated, playing on the great Polish successes in the past. Starting in 1850 Poland would begin construction of a series of defensive works along its Eastern border with Russia. Known as the “Bastion” this great defensive line of trenches, fortifications, barracks and entrenchments was to be Poland’s first line of defence in the expected next war with Russia. After 1857, and even more so after 1863, Prussian investment and expertise flooded into Poland, helping with the Bastion. Prusso-Polish military co-operation would be a focal point for this period. Huge war-gaming exercises would be conducted and Poland would share in Prussia’s military renaissance. Polish military industry and tactics, and later on it was joined in this by Prussian, were focused on the belief that in a future conflict they would be greatly outnumbered and therefore they should seek to develop weapons capable of rapid-fire in order to even out the numbers [2]. Polish-Prussian military co-operation in tactics and weapons development would lead to huge strides in the military capabilities of both states.

The Kingdom of Prussia

Prussia was a member of the Coalition, the victorious alliance, of the Fourth Silesian War (1830-1834). In the resulting Congress of Madrid, Prussia had been rewarded with territory at the expense of Hanover, Poland and Saxobavaria. Under Wilhelm I (1794-1839) Prussia had re-emerged as a major European power. Despite its gains at Madrid the greatest legacy of the Fourth Silesian War for the Prussian state was the defeat at Leipzig, to the Franco-Saxobavarian alliance. Not only had Prussia suffered grievous losses but its infantry and especially its cavalry had been clearly second best to those of France, now rightful regarded as possessing the finest army in Europe. The reigns of Wilhelm II (1839-1860) and George I (1860-1874) would be centred on four key aspects that would dominate the Prussian history of this period: the improvement of the military, industrialisation, a quest for identity and foreign relations (chiefly with Austria and Poland).

The reputation of the Prussian army had been dealt a savage blow at Leipzig. A blow that struck at the heart of Prussian national belief. But they would respond. General Richter von Manthofen had commanded the Prussian army that had fought in the west during the war and had achieved great success throughout Germany during the conflict. In 1838 von Manthofen published his work On War [3], a compilation of his campaigns, his thoughts on war, his arguments for military organisation and his predictions for fighting war in the future. On War would become the Prussian military bible of the next half century. Wilhelm II was a great admirer of von Manthofen. Taking into account the suggestions in On War, Wilhelm oversaw the creation of a new modern Prussian General Staff (which von Manthofen was made head of), a new merit based promotion system, a streamlined administration and the pioneering of new tactics and weapons. George I would continue his father’s work in this field as the Prussian army was to rebuild and become the dominant force in Prussia. Prussia was less populous than the great continental European military powers (chiefly France, Austria-Hungary and Russia) and so the government in Berlin was eager to level the playing field so to speak. Encouragement in industrial development, railroad construction and support for military production was a focus of the reigns of Wilhelm II and George I. Prussian industrial production grew exponentially during this period and the country soared into the modern era.

Prussia’s position and role in Germany and indeed in Europe more broadly was in transition in this period. The Austro-Prussian alliance, a staple of Prussian foreign policy of the past, remained a cornerstone of Prussian diplomacy. The relationship with Poland however would change greatly in this period. The desire to improve ties with Warsaw was a key focus of the reigns of Wilhelm II and George I. The signings of the Treaty of Friendship (1857) and the Prusso-Polish Alliance (1863) brought Poland and Prussia together. Prussia however now was determined to bring Austria and Poland together; joining its two separate alliances would create a formidable power bloc at the heart of Europe to counter the powers on the fringes. Domestically Prussia was to endure an identity crisis. The views of Carl Brandt, on German nationalism and national identity, were to send shockwaves throughout Prussia. As Brandtism became popular in Saxobavaria and other parts of Germany, Prussian political thinking was divided into two camps. On one side there was the Pan-Germans who, rejected Brandt’s ideas, and argued that Prussia should re-assert its similarities with the other German nations and adopt Pan-German policies. The other side was the Excpetionalists, who saw Prussia as a unique national identity, inspired in part by Brandtism. They argued that Prussia was not like the other states who had been polluted by France and decadent ideals, but held a true German identity and should seek to go its own way. The rise of Brandtism elsewhere, the rapprochement with Poland and the personal ideas of George I saw the Excpetionalists win out. Prussia began to distance itself from the other German states and forge a new Prussian nationalism. George I said famously in 1871 that Pan-German nationalism was a fantasy and that “Germany was a mere geographical expression, not a nation”.

The Austro-Hungarian Empire

The Austro-Hungarian Empire, like Prussia, was a victor in the Fourth Silesian War. Austria had gained Polish Galicia, more Italian territory and bits and pieces from Saxobavaria. The Empire had under Joseph I and Francis I [4] reformed and settled the political tensions between Austria and Hungary, unifying the Empire. Although again like Prussia, Austria had suffered defeat at Leipzig, Austrian forces had generally performed well and there was no national soul searching like happened to their north. This period for Austria-Hungary saw the reigns of Francis I (1806-1840), Joseph II (1840-1851), Ferdinand I (1851-1869) and Francis II (1869-). During this period Austria-Hungary would be focused primarily on internal reform, maintaining the political stability and unity of the empire, foreign policy and modernisation.

Austria-Hungary benefited well from its early reforms. Under Joseph I, the Great Reformer, the Austro-Hungarian Empire had been established, education had been reformed and its effects widened, serfdom had been abolished and meritocracy and progress had replaced conservatism and aristocratic inertia. The first of the major continental European powers to modernise, Austria had a head start on its rivals. Politically Austria-Hungary had achieved one major success in terms of its internal tensions. The creation of the empire, the establishment of a true Parliament in Vienna, and the promotion of a joint German-Magyar identity had secured the loyalty of the Hungarians. The Hungarians, as a whole, were happy with their participation in the Empire, content with their special status, and were eager and willing members of the union. Under Joseph II and Ferdinand I new reforms were passed, inspired by the events in other European states at this time. The Imperial Parliament in Vienna, became semi-elected with the passing of suffrage for property-owning males, akin to the events in France. Economic freedoms were encouraged and the civil service was streamlined and modernised. Power was centralised in Vienna where the Emperor and Parliament welded the country together. The Austrian military likewise kept up the pace of reform. Though unlike Prussia or Poland, Austria also devoted efforts to its navy which grew in power and size under the Habsburg monarchs.

The Second Balkan War resulted in Bosnia becoming an Austrian protectorate, though the Empire had stayed out of the war. In the aftermath of the struggle Austria begin to court Greece. The Greeks, with the Turks beaten, were now concerned primarily with Serbia, which had emerged as a major power house in the Balkans. The rise of Boskovic’s ideas calling for Slavic unity and a greater Serbia were a great concern for the Greeks. Consequently Austria and Greece grew close during this period. Likewise relations with the United Kingdom of the Danube (also concerned about pan-Slavic beliefs) improved, though UKD claims to Transylvania prevented greater ties. The rise of Brandtism in the late 1860s and 1870s would affect the Empire, though in the end it would provide a blessing in disguise. Austria had always been hamstrung by its two foci, remaining a German power, whilst balancing its Balkan ethnicities. The Brandtisit movement forced Austria to choose. Like Prussia the Austrians chose to forge their own path. Angered by the arguments of Carl Brandt the Austrian overwhelmingly turned against advocating a “German” identity, something heartily encouraged by the Hungarians. Instead a new nationalism developed portraying Austrians as an ancient and prestigious group who had a natural affinity with the Hungarians as well as other groups such as the Czechs. Austrians were now seen as an ethnic German people whose destiny lay in the east, after all had they not for centuries fought to liberate the Balkans from the evils of the Muslim Turks? This new nationalist belief, of Austrian identity separate from the pan-German notions of Brandt, helped the Empire. Austrians no longer saw themselves so much as “German” whilst Hungarians were afraid of the pan-Slavic movement and sought closer ties with Austrians as a counter to the Slavic threat to their east and south. The Czechs too sought to become part of this new national family, and by the end of this period there was growing pressure to better integrate the Czechs into the political framework. Though other ethnic groups, specifically the Poles and Italians, remained troublesome.

Austro-Hungarian foreign policy mirrored this internal change. Austria began to distance itself from German affairs. The Austro-Prussian alliance remained strong, and as discussed ties with Greece improved. It was with Poland that the most serious challenges emerged. Ever since the Treaty of Friendship in 1857 Prussia had been lobbying for Austria to improve its Polish relations, even more so after the formal alliance between Berlin and Warsaw. Vienna was broadly in favour of such. Like Prussia, Austria-Hungary was worried about Russian power, France, Brandtist movements in Germany as well as Italian issues. Poland too, for reasons established, was eager to improve ties with Austria-Hungary. The thorn in the issue was Galicia. Having already renounced claims to Silesia and Posen the government in Warsaw knew it could not give up on Galicia, the nationalist outcry would be too great. Austria on the other hand was not keen on giving up Galicia. Events however set about resolving the issue. In 1870, 1871 and 1872 there were ethnic Polish riots in Galicia. Coinciding with these was unrest in Venetia and in parts of Illyria. Francis II and his government increasingly became concerned that the empire simply had one too many national groups and was overstretched. Wouldn’t it simply be better to get rid of one trouble? Prussia stepped in and provided a settlement. Austria would sell Galicia to Poland, though Austrian troops would maintain several key forts in the region and ethnic Poles would be encouraged to move to Polish lands. Vienna accepted the deal. Losing Galicia was a blow but the ability to maintain control of the forts was a consolation. In addition the lump sum of funds and with one less ethnic concern the Empire could re-focus its efforts internally. There was still a political backlash against the government in parts of the Empire for the loss of land, in addition Italians in Venetia now began advocating for a similar deal with the Italian Republic. Regardless the Galicia Compromise of 1872 [5] paved way for the Austro-Polish alliance of 1873. If the Prusso-Polish alliance signalled the end of the Bourbon alliance between Poland and France the alliance with Austria (France’s near permanent enemy for several centuries) confirmed it. In 1875 at a conference in Budapest, Poland, Austria and Prussia all united by a triangle of alliances signed a formal alliance. The treaty established the Triple Alliance, a bloc that dominated central Europe, though collectively they were more commonly known as the Central Powers [6].

[1] The events in Germany will be covered more fully later.
[2] An update covering in detail the developments in military technology will be coming up shortly.
[3] This timeline's version of the OTL book of the same name by von Clausewitz
[4] Joseph I was Joseph II of the old Habsburg Empire. But with the creation of the Austro-Hungarian Empire all the numerical titles are reset. So he is Joseph I of Austria-Hungary.
[5] The Galicia Compromise may appear unlikely at first glance, maybe even ASB to some. But I believe considering all the variables that this is the right course of action for A-H and I believe they would have seen it as such.
[6] I believe that the contents of this update and the formation of the Central Powers is indeed a likely outcome considering the developments in Europe at this time and the balance of power. The Poles obviously are the "big winners" regaining Galicia and securing two powerful allies. The Prussians too do well, forming a secure bloc in the centre of Europe. The Prussian nationalism has resulted in Prussia distancing itself ideologically from Germany yet it still has German interests, it can't seperate itself from geography. Austria-Hungary I think also comes out well. Though it loses Galicia, it has managed to stabalise its political situation and secured its northern borders.

Kings, Republics and Commerce
Part I: The Netherlands

Republic of the Netherlands

The Dutch had avoided the entanglements of the great European conflicts of the previous half century, those of the Revolutionary Wars and the later Fourth Silesian War. During this period of peace and prosperity the Dutch had developed a large empire centred around the Indian Ocean. In the early 19th Century the Dutch had waged wars and launched expeditions in South Africa, Madagascar, the East Indies and Niuew Zeeland in an effort to expand their holdings. The period of 1790-1850 has been referred to as the Second Golden Age of the Netherlands. As the other major European powers were repeatedly drawn into large conflicts the Dutch were able to expand their influence, including for a time having considerable sway over the Qing Empire. The middle decades of the 19th Century however would see Dutch fortunes reverse and their empire and nation was to decline, overshadowed by European competitors and rising powers, all leading to an end of the period of Dutch isolation from European affairs.

Dutch South Africa had grown into a valuable and secure colony of the Netherlands and became a significant power in its own right. Dutch settlement in South Africa would rise steadily during this period and the colony would grow and develop. The discovery of diamonds and other precious metals was a great incentive for settlement and boosted immigration and development. Cape Town was the capital of South Africa (as well as running Madagascar) and the city blossomed into a centre of trade and industry. As the Dutch colony grew and pioneers and settlers continued to push further into the conflict, border tensions with the Portuguese in East Africa led to deterioration in relations between the two countries. From 1857-1858 the two countries fought over the disputed border in southern Africa, as well as in the East Indies and elsewhere. Though the war effectively ended in stalemate, the Portuguese (backed by powerful allies) got the better of the peace settlement. This was the first real check of Dutch expansion and marked the end of the Golden Age. Eager to regain some initiative in the region the Dutch waged campaigns against local tribes. The two Zulu Wars (1861 and 1863-4) saw the Netherlands expand their holdings in the south, though the cost (in human lives and capital) had been far more than anticipated.

The trade monopoly enjoyed by the Dutch became challenged and soon overwhelmed in this period. The rising power of the British and Portuguese and their re-focusing to African and Asian affairs saw the Dutch forced out of previously safe markets. The rise of other economic actors in the African scene (principally the League of the Rhine and Denmark) placed further pressures on the Dutch commercial network. Dutch commitment to China also sapped resources. Unlike Britain, the Netherlands lacked the industrial and commercial power to play a global role, the Dutch however failed to realise this. The collapse of the Qing Empire shocked the Dutch, who had invested much in securing their hold on the ancient dynasty. The civil wars and chaos that followed in China were to become a black hole for Dutch finances. It became increasingly clear that the Netherlands was overstretched by its commitments to its puppet faction in the post-Qing power squabble. Things went wrong in a big way in the early 1870s. The pro-Dutch faction in China suffered a series of devastating defeats to both the forces of Xu and Guangzhou factions. Dutch forces became pinned down in a desperate attempt to prop up the Tung forces. This overstretch would cost them. Sensing weakness the Indian Kingdom of Mysore (a rising industrial power) went in for the kill. Having already established bases in East Africa and Sumatra, Mysore had been developing a modern navy and army with British assistance (indeed Mysore and Britain had joined in crushing Nagpur in the 1840s). In 1871 the Dutch-Mysore War broke out with Mysore launching an attack on Colombo, capital of Dutch Ceylon. Caught off guard the Dutch fleet there was devastated. Mysore soon began a full-scale invasion of the island, as well as mounting an offensive on Sumatra. The Dutch were stunned. Unable to maintain its efforts in China and fight Mysore simultaneously the Netherlands was forced to abandon China (the Tung were soon overwhelmed) and re-focus in the south. The Dutch Army launched a counter-offensive on Sumatra, and were crushed. The Dutch were not prepared for the strength of the Mysorean forces, armed with the latest British weapons and were repulsed. Panic set in throughout the Dutch empire. Eventually reinforcements from South Africa and the Netherlands were able to stem the advance of Mysore, but could not push them back. In 1873 the Treaty of Calcutta ended the fighting, which saw the Dutch lose Ceylon and northern Sumatra.

The defeat in the Dutch-Mysore War undermined the entire Dutch Empire. Dutch South Africa’s pro-independence faction began to gain in strength. In the East Indies cracks began to appear and even in distant Niuew Zeeland there were rumblings. The Dutch overstretch resulted in an economic crash in 1873 that saw the nation enter a serious financial depression. Politically the Netherlands had been clearly knocked into the second rank of powers. With Mysore and Portugal both having won out over it (backed by Britain) the Dutch found themselves drifting towards France, eager for a great power protector to help them stabilise their fortunes. Franco-Dutch relations strengthened in this period and French influence began to grow in the Netherlands. Dissatisfaction with the government and economic stagnation created an opportunity for the French. Opponents of republicanism, the French were eager to bring the Netherlands into the monarchist fold. Exploiting dissatisfaction France backed a coup by Dutch monarchists who overthrew the republic and placed the young head of the House of Orange on the throne crowning him King Alexander I of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, who was speedily married to Princess Sophie of France. By 1875 the Dutch were a second-rate power; the defeats of the 1850s and 1870s had undermined their empire and the monarchist victory in 1874 exacerbated differences with the colonies. The Netherlands had tied their future to Paris, making avoiding the next great European conflict impossible.

The Kingdom of the Netherlands:


Kings, Republics and Commerce
Part II: The Rhineland

The League of the Rhine had been created at the end of the Revolutionary Wars as a confederation of the more reformist German states of the former Holy Roman Empire. Since then the League had expanded to include new members (such as Oldenburg and Hamburg) and had adopted a stronger centralised government with the Constitutional Act of 1833. The League had sided with Austria and its traditional ally Prussia in the Fourth Silesian War. Although the League had been on the winning side it had suffered invasion and occupation at the hands of the French and seen its army beaten on the fields outside Leipzig. The following decades would prove to be a period of great internal change and turmoil for the League.

The politics of the League were centred at the capital at Dortmund. However the individual member states each had their own autonomous governments, and a small cadre of member states (Cologne, Cleves, Westphalia and Munsterland) were able to exercise great influence over the central government and the rest of the League. There would be two roughly simultaneous political conflicts within the League for the early decades of this period: that between federalists pushing for a stronger centralised state and confederationalists wanting to keep power with the member states; and the other being between monarchists and republicans. In 1835 three of the League members had republican governments: Cologne, Lippe and Osnabruck. The reforms that took place in Britain, France, Portugal, Russia and Austria-Hungary however during the 1840s and 1850s sent ripples across Europe. Though by 1860s there were only two republics in Europe outside the League (Spain and Italy), republican sentiment was on the rise in many parts of the continent. Not least in the League. The League had always been (well most of it anyway) a reformist and liberal focal point and it is not surprising therefore that republicanism was strong throughout the Rhineland. The republicans soon rallied around the figure of Konrad Zimmerman, Chancellor of the Republic of Cologne.

Zimmerman was a charismatic and ambitious figure whose republican orientations were mixed with strong Federalist beliefs and a desire to see the League become a more assertive player in European and global politics. Zimmerman soon became head of the Federal Republican Party (FRP) in the Rhinelander Parliament in Dortmund. As reformist sentiment built in the League the dominoes started to fall. In 1862 Hamburg’s monarch resigned under internal pressure and a republic was instated. In 1864 Nassau followed suit. Then Mark in 1865. Wary of the toppling of the monarchies in other League members the more conservative member monarchs (those of Westphalia, Munsterland, Cleves and Oldenburg) began clamping down on Republican sentiments, making them increasingly unpopular. In February 1866 Duke Ludwig III of Lippe, the current Grand Marshall, died. In the election that followed the republican members rallied behind Zimmerman, whilst the others were split between the candidates from Munsterland and East Frisia. Zimmerman was the first Grand Marshall to be elected who was not a monarch. The election of Zimmerman was a shock to the more reactionary monarchs and in Munsterland the king and his government announced their intention to leave the League. Zimmerman scrambled to keep the League together, but in the end he needn’t have worried, the people acted for him.

In July 1866 upon hearing that the king was preparing to leave the League a huge protest began in the city of Munster which soon grew into a force of tens of thousands. Police were ordered to disperse the crowd, but many deserted or defected to the protestors. The king tried to call the army in to restore order, but the army replied that it took orders from Dortmund, not him. Three hours later the king abdicated as the people stormed into the Munster centres of government. The uprising in Munster, was soon mirrored in Cleves, Westphalia, Oldenburg and East Frisia. The Duke of Paderborn, the only non-elected head of state left, abdicated.

A painting commemorating the Revolution of 1866 in Munster. There are many theories as to why black was added to the flag. Some say black was drawn from the Dortmund eagle, a focal point of the League flag. Others that it was taken from the colours of the Federal Republican Party (Black and Gold). Or from the Black of Cologne, power base of Zimmerman and the FRP. Regardless the tricolour of black joined with the traditional League colours of red and gold was popular in the 1866 Revolutions.

The Revolutions of 1866 toppled monarchism in the League. With huge public support Zimmerman and the Federal Republicans drafted a new constitution. The League was dissolved and the new Federal Republic of the Rhineland (Bundesrepublik Rheinland) was declared. The member states autonomy was greatly reduced, and each was now run by an elected state parliament. The Federal Diet (or Bundestag) in Dortmund now had greater power and authority and Zimmerman was unanimously elected as the first Chancellor. Under the new government the Federal Republic would become an economic powerhouse. Industrialisation and financial strength allowed the Rhineland to draw in investment from other parts of Europe. Trade boomed as the Rhineland established its first colony in West Africa in 1872 as an overseas commercial port. As the Dutch economy nosedived in 1873 the Rhineland’s soared and the Federal Republic soon became the dominant financial centre in Europe, outside Britain. Politically the FRP was the dominant political power house in the republic. The Social Republican Party, more focused on welfare and the working classes and the Radicals (inspired by the writings of Briton Stanley Chilcott) were the main opposition. The developments in southern and central Germany, notably the rise of Brandtism, however would be a concern. The establishment of the Brandtist German Party of the Rhineland in 1874 marked the growing impact of those ideas and the rise of Pan-German nationalism in the region. By 1875 however despite developments to the south the Federal Republic remained an independent political entity with a powerful economy, a growing overseas presence, a strong republican identity and a seemingly bright future.

Flag of the Federal Republic of the Rhineland, adopted 1866. The black used in the revolutions was added to the former League flag. The eagle of Dortmund remaining at the centre.

Kings, Republics and Commerce
Part III: Denmark


Denmark had endured an indisputable rise in power and prominence during the latter half of the 18th Century and the early years of the 19th. Specifically it was the Danish participation, and the triumph, in the Fourth Silesian War (1830-1834) that returned Denmark solidly into the ranks of the secondary European powers. Victory in this war had seen Denmark benefit greatly to the determinant of its historic rival, Sweden. In the Madrid Congress that had ended the war Denmark had received slabs of territory from the humbled Swedes including Scandia, Halland and Gotland (a semi-independent duchy from 1834-1858 before being integrated into Denmark proper). Hamburg had been ceded to the Danes temporarily, though under agreement it had then been sold to the League of the Rhine for a hefty sum. Denmark had by 1835 become the dominant Scandinavian power and would continue its steady rise over the next four decades to cement itself as a significant minor power in Europe.

Denmark in this period would have to ride the wave of political reformism and developments that was sweeping the European continent. Christian VIII was King of Denmark from 1835 to 1850 and we would oversee the first stage of political reforms. Inspired by the changes in Britain, France and Portugal Christian VIII oversaw the creation of a Parliament in Copenhagen. It was comprised of the aristocracy and elected members; suffrage was restricted to wealthy and land-owning males. Judicial and economic reforms were also pushed through helping to modernize the Danish state. Christian was succeeded by his son Frederick VII in 1850. The new king was less reformist-minded than his father and slowed the progress of reform. During his reign Gotland was integrated into Denmark proper in 1858. Norway’s relationship with Denmark was a prominent political issue in this period. There were plans to create an autonomous Norwegian parliament. This notion, as well as calls for further suffrage in Denmark, was scuppered by Christian IX upon his ascension to the throne in 1867. Christian IX had the conservative tendencies of his father, even more he was deeply unnerved by the Republican surge in the Rhineland in the Revolutions of 1866. Christian was opposed to Republicanism and indeed took in the former rulers of Oldenburg after their overthrow. Christian IX would halt the reformist progress and launch efforts to discourage republican movements in the country; though he did not seek to overturn existing reforms.

The Industrial Revolution would come to Denmark and its empire in the mid-19th Century. The centre of Danish industrial expansion was Kiel in Holstein. This region would see its industrial output increase by over 400% in these four decades. Kiel would become the leading Danish shipbuilding centre; therefore benefiting greatly from the rise of Danish maritime power. Spreading out from Kiel industrialisation spread throughout southern Denmark and around Copenhagen. Jutland’s textile industry would modernise and this would further fuel the Danish economic rise. From 1872-75 the Kiel Canal was constructed under the guidance of the wealthy and enterprising Danish industrialist Lars Ingemann; a monument to Danish industrial growth and something that facilitated continue commercial and industrial growth. Norway would too benefit from this trend. Copenhagen would invest heavily in Norwegian industrial growth; the hydropower revolution being a principal benefactor, as well as copper and timber. Scania, gained from Sweden in 1834, would see its agricultural sector develop under Danish patronage. Danish migration was encouraged and Scania would be deeply integrated into the Kingdom. The Dutch economic crisis in the 1870s would also benefit the country as it filled former Dutch markets, though the Rhineland did get the lion’s share. By 1875 the Danish economy had modernised and the population of Denmark and its various territories exceeded seven million.

The Kiel Canal 1875:

The Battle of Skagerrak in the Fourth Silesian War was a great moment in Danish history. The Anglo-Danish victory over the French and Swedish fleets marked the emergence of Denmark as a major power and was a significant naval triumph. The legacy of Skagerrak would see Denmark invest heavily in naval affairs. The Danish Fleet would become the prime benefactor of the capital garnished by the industrialisation of the economy. Great new warships were lain down and a new modern naval school was set up in Copenhagen. By 1875 the Royal Danish Navy was the sixth largest of the European navies (after, in order, Britain, France, Portugal, Russia and just behind the Dutch). Britain would aid Denmark in its naval renaissance. In terms of Foreign Policy Denmark and Britain would become close allies in this period. Denmark had drawn apart from the League following the Revolutions of 1866 and its only real ally was London. Britain was keen to maintain friendly ties with Denmark; Danish control of the Skagerrak was geopolitically vital. Russia, which was increasingly Britain’s chief concern (along with the old enemy France), and a strong Danish navy was useful in bottlenecking the ever expanding Russian Baltic Fleet. Denmark also expanded its coastal fortifications with engineering assistant from Britain. The rise in Danish maritime power/interest and expanding commercial might resulted in the expansion of Denmark’s overseas empire. Danish territories in West Africa received a wave of new people and capital from Denmark and Norway. A Danish naval expedition launched in 1872 under the command of Danish admiral J. Claessen would establish control of a collection of islands in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans, including Claessen Island named in his honour, before heading east to Asia. Claessen was able to secure Danish rights (using a combination of gun and gold) to using the city of Tuy Hòa in Viet Nam as a naval base from which Danish interests in East Asia and the Pacific would be based. Covert efforts to undermine Dutch control in the East Indies began near immediately. By 1875 Denmark was an industrial power poised to take its place on the world stage.


Industry and Innovation
The Development of Military Technology at Land and Sea

The twenty years from the end of the American War (1859-1863) to the outbreak of the War of 1880 would see great developments in military technology. Armies developed new weapons, new artillery as well as new systems of organisation that would revolutionize warfare on land. Meanwhile at sea new shipbuilding ideas would transform traditional maritime warfare and the beginnings of the naval arms race that would shape the latter years of the century are clear. The heart of the developments in land warfare would be centred in Europe, and more specifically in Prussia and Poland.

Poland had of course been in a state of war preparation even since the 1830s, constantly preparing for the next war with Russia. The signing of the Prusso-Polish Alliance in 1863 would signal the start of a mutually beneficial relationship. Prussian and Polish governments and private enterprises would be at the forefront of the revolution. Two industrial corporate giants would lead the way: the Prussian company Schwartz Armaments (based in Berlin but had investment/links in the Rhineland) and Lewandowski and Muller (L&M), which was a joint Prussian-Polish company. One of the earliest innovations was the Mark-II[1] breech-loading rifle developed by Schwartz in 1865. The Mark-II would soon become the universal rifle of the Prussian and Polish militaries. It spawned a serious of copy cats: the British Leicester Rifle, the French Gallica and the Russian Azov 66 being the most well known; though the Mark-II was arguably the most effective and it was in most widespread use by 1880. Poland had long been obsessed with ideas aimed at evening the playing field in case of a future war with Russia. Knowing they were to be vastly outnumbered the government in Warsaw sought for weapons that would enable their smaller forces to inflict maximum damage on the Russians. The result of course was the L&M creation of the Zemsta-75[2]. The development of this machine gun in 1878 was the first in the world of its kind, and the word “Zemsta” meaning vengeance in Polish, left little doubt what they had in mind for the weapon. This was followed by the Watt Gun, a similar design from New England in 1880. In 1880, building off the work done in France on smokeless powder in the 1860s, L&M designed the Boruc Rifle[3], the world’s first automatic rifle, though widespread production did not begin until 1885.

Artillery would also go through a wave of innovation. France had long been known for its powerful and effective artillery pieces, notable in the Fourth Silesian War, the Second Balkan War and the American War. France would continue this tradition with the development of the Model 70 (in 1870) a revolutionary steel breach-loading gun, the best in the world[4]. Russia would reveal the Zhirkov-74 a few years later, a solid piece of artillery, though the Model 70 was still probably the better of the two. There were advances in medicine as well, taught first hand by the fighting in the Balkans and America, as well as by the European campaigns in Africa. The development of professional medical staffs to accompany the armies as well as professional military medical schools, the best being those set up in Berlin (1875), London (1878) and Paris (1879). The expansion of rail networks and communications technologies (such as the telegraph) also signaled the beginning of a new age in military warfare.

Size of the Armies of the Major European Powers (1870-1880)

At sea also this would be a period of change and competition. New technologies backed by the power of industry would see the end of the age of sail and usher in a new era of naval warfare. Whereas the revolution on land was in large part driven in central Europe the changes at sea would be pioneered by the world’s two premier naval powers: Britain and France. Britain launched the world’s first armour plated iron-hulled warship in 1862, the HMS Leviathan[5], which unfortunately was launched too late to play a role in the defeat at the Battle of Cadiz in the American War. The defeat at Cadiz, combined with the launch in 1863 of La Reinne Anne (France’s answer to the Leviathan), shocked the British national psyche and the next twenty years would see Britain reinvest heavily in its naval forces and maritime facilities; though the French would do their best to keep pace. By the end of the decade Britain and France had each expanded their fleets with these new ironclads and others like them; in addition other nations had also by 1870 launched their own ironclads (those that had at least one major ironclad warship by 1880 were in order of launch: New England, Russia, Portugal, América, Netherlands, Denmark, the Federal Republic of the Rhineland, Louisiana, New Granada, Austria, Spain, Aragon, Mysore, Prussia and Korea). France took the lead over their great rival with the launch in 1870 of the La Victoire which was the world’s first fully armoured sail-less turret-utilising warship. This was the most advanced warship afloat until 1881. In that year Britain launched the HMS Lionheart. The Lionheart was to be the first of the class of warship that was to become known as Battlecruisers[6]. France would follow suit with La Roi Louis the following year. In 1884 Russia launched the Tsarina entering the Battlecruiser club and was joined the following year by New England, Denmark, Portugal and the Américan Republic.

Warship Tonnage of the Powers 1880


[1] Akin to the French OTL Chassepot Rifle
[2] This world's version of the deadly Maxim Gun
[3] Similar to the OTL Mondragon Rifle made in Mexico
[4] The Model 70 is similar to the OTL Krupp C64 of the Prussians
[5] The OTL HMS Warrior
[6] In OTL these would be considered Pre-Dreadnoughts

Conflict and Confederation (1865-1885)
Part I

“Who knew one little book could cause so much trouble?” – Wilhelm III of Prussia (1875)

“True freedom for the German people lies in unity. Too long have we been the playthings of our neighbours. A free Germany is a united Germany.” – From Was ist ein Deutscher? by Carl Brandt (1865)

The publication of Carl Brandt’s historic work What is a German? in 1865 would be a defining moment in German history. Over the next two decades the countries and peoples of Germany would ride a sea of change and turmoil. The Brandtist arguments would become widely popular throughout the region in the period. Prussia and Austria had been greatly affected by the movement and had both sought to distance themselves from the rising pan-German movement; and, despite the founding of a Brandtist political party, the new Federal Republic of the Rhineland also sought to set itself apart. In the south however, amongst the collection of independent states that made up the rest of Germany, it proved very popular. Brandt was invited to speak at the University of Leipzig in 1868 and there was nearly a riot as people were desperate to hear him speak. In 1869 Carl Brandt attended a dinner in Munich to meet King Frederick Augustus II who became a passionate convert to Brandtism and began to champion himself as the leader of the German people.

Brandtist ideals soon spread throughout much of the independent German states in the south. In 1873 and 1874 there were riots in the Palatinate and Trier (French protectorates since the Fourth Silesian War) which wanted to remove the French presence from their lands and embrace pan-German unity. Saxobavaria, though the self-declared champion of the German states, did not seek to confront France over this issue, obviously not wanting to antagonise its greatest ally which also happen to be arguably the strongest military power on the European continent. The French were however concerned about the mood in the Palatinate and Trier. King Louis XIX, who had succeeded his mother Queen Anne in 1874, and his government were faced with a choice. Withdraw from the two protectorates or try and cement their grasp. Louis decided to back out, eager to show France as a friend to the German people. A strong south German state would after all be a balance against Prussia and their ancient enemy Austria. In 1875 therefore France removed its troops from the two German states, though any mention of letting Baden (now a part of France proper) go was out of the question. The French withdrawal (and Louis’ backing for Frederick Augustus efforts) gave new momentum to the Brandtism movement. In 1878 King William II of Wurttemberg ascended to the throne. William, along with his government, were all proponents of the pan-German ideals of Brandt. Covertly William began talks with Munich in regards to a possible union of the two states. Wurzburg and Hessen would also see serious Brandtist popular support develop in 1878 and 1879. Frederick Augustus of Saxobavaria was of course overjoyed at these developments. He invited William II and representatives from Wurzburg to Munich to discuss a possible union. The outline called for Wurzburg and Wurttemberg to become autonomous provinces in a new south German Kingdom (with the two monarchs remaining “Princes” in the new duchies) under the rule of King Augustus. When word got out about these discussion Berlin and Vienna reacted, a unified south German state was a clear threat to them.

Prussia announced it would not tolerate a union of the south German states and it was backed up by its ally Austria as well as to a lesser extent by the third Central Powers member Poland. The Austro-Prussian response of course simply galvanized more Brandtist support in the other states; like school children told not to do something they simply wanted it more. In January of 1880 as talks of union seemed to be reaching a conclusion, the Prussian ambassador in Munich handed Frederick Augustus a note threatening war if Saxobavaria went through with the unification. In February King Louis XIX sent the Saxobavarian king a letter in reply to Frederick Augustus’ ask for help in the event of war, saying that France would intervene if the Saxobavarian state seemed destined to collapse. On February 25th William II of Wurttemberg publically announced his intention to join Wurttemberg to a greater German state, which caused widespread celebrations in his country. Wurzburg followed suit two days later. On March 10th 1880 King Frederick Augustus announced in Munich the formation of the Kingdom of Germany comprising the former states of Saxobavaria, Wurzburg and Wurttemberg. The populations of the other south German states were soon in the streets advocating their intentions to join. On March 13th 1880 Prussian troops invaded Saxony.

The Kingdom of Germany and its neighbours (March 10th 1880)


Conflict and Confederation (1865-1885)
Part II
The War of 1880

The War of 1880 (also known as the War of German Unity, the Unification Struggle, the Prusso-German War and the German War) began in March 1880 with the Prussian invasion of Saxony in response to the unification of the Kingdom of Germany (of Saxobavaria, Wurzburg and Wurttemberg). The Prussian invasion immediately galvanized a huge response in the south German states. Those who had been less than enthusiastic about unification and the war were outraged by the Prussian aggression and a surge of volunteering for the military swept the new German kingdom. Diplomatically Hessen and the Palatinate both declared war on Prussia, though Trier did not. At the war’s beginning Germany had only been a unified state for three days. There was as yet no German military, state, government etc. Consequently the response of Germany to the attack was sluggish. Saxobavaria took time to absorb the militaries of Wurzburg and Wurttemberg and this delayed their reaction.

The first major confrontation was the Battle of Riesa on March 19th-20th 1880. The Prussians had very quickly mobilised their forces, indeed Prussian mobilisation had begun in January when Prussia had originally threatened war. At the start of the year the Prussian army numbered at 420,000 but by March this had swollen to over half a million. The German armies in total numbered just shy of 400,000 including those of Hessen and the Palatinate (though the vast majority were from Saxobavaria). Riesa sat on the Elbe River and was a critical location as the Prussians needed to cross the river to move south. At Riesa around 100,000 Prussians engaged 70,000 German soldiers. Despite the advantage of defending the river bank the Germans were convincingly beaten. The Prussian soldiers were armed with the famous Mark-II rifle; a few groups even had the even more accurate Mark-III, and were able to outrange the German infantry and forced their way across the river. After Riesa, Prussian forces swept across the Elbe. In April Dresden came under siege. As German forces massed and got organised in the south, Saxony was for all intents and purposes overrun by the end of April. Leipzig however managed to hold out, though Dresden fell on May 1st. A German army was hurried north to relieve Leipzig. Hoping for a repeat of the famous Franco-Saxobavarian victory over Prussia and its allies during the Fourth Silesian War, the Germans were soundly disappointed. The relief force clashed with a Prussian army a few miles south of the city. The Germans were again defeated, the superior weapons (now including the deadly Polish Zemsta machine gun given from Poland to their allies which cut swathes in the German ranks) once more gave Prussia the edge. The battle was a Prussian success and this victory at Leipzig was celebrated throughout Prussia, Prussian King George II announcing that the “Ghost of 1833 has been lifted”.

German and Prussian soldiers fighting near Leipzig:

Leipzig fell on May 28th. German forces, now gathered, did manage to stem the Prussian drive at Hof in June. The German artillery, armed with the deadly French Model 70, outperformed their Prussian counterparts forcing the Prussian army to regroup. The Prussian state however it must be simply said was just better prepared for the war. The reforms of the previous decades, the legacy of von Manthofen and his book On War (including the creation of a Prussian General Staff), the fabulous Prussian rail network, and the effectiveness of the Mark-II rifle coupled with the Germans’ difficulties in organising themselves meant that all the cards were in Berlin’s hands. Prussian forces regrouped and launched a new offensive, cutting off and encircling a large German/Hessen army at Coburg, crippling the German war effort. As the war continued France was greatly concerned that Prussia may crush the south German kingdoms and Prussian hegemony over Germany might be the result. France, its forces being ready since February for the possibility of intervention, entered the war in August. French forces were delayed by the less than brilliant south German rail network and it took near a month for French forces to arrive at the battlefield in numbers. Prussia had driven deeper into Germany and was now besieging Nuremberg. A combined Franco-German force attacked the Prussians near Wurzburg. The superior allied armies and the deadly French Model 70 artillery, proved too much for the Prussians who were beaten back. As France began taking control of the situation, Prussia appealed to its allies. Poland did not enter the war but sent more of its Zemsta machine guns, including as well a few of its prototype Boruc automatic rifles. Austria-Hungary did get involved however. An Austro-Hungarian army invaded Bavaria from the east. The Germans, and their French allies, were gradually pushed back on all fronts by the Austro-Prussian armies. Nuremberg fell in September. By October the Germans were on their knees, Munich itself was under threat. Though the French had performed brilliantly and more of their forces were arriving all the time the Germans were done, and Prussia and Austria were much closer to the frontline than France. After a German army was beaten at Regensberg on November 5th the German government in Munich requested an armistice.

French and German troops prepare for battle near Wurzburg:

The Treaty of Florence which ended the war saw the short-lived German experiment brought to an end. The Kingdom of Germany was dissolved, returning to the three pre-unification kingdoms. Prussia and Austria toyed with the idea of dividing Saxobavaria into two but France was against it and the abolishment of the German state was enough for them. Any future political union between the south German states was prohibited. Slivers of land in the north were given to Prussia and the Saxobavarian army was to be limited to a quarter of a million men. The former German states were also forced to pay reparations to Austria and Prussia.

The War of 1880 in many ways laid the foundation for the Great War. France, though its allies had been defeated, had performed well, its armies proving more than a match for those of Prussia and Austria. In addition the French state had only been warming up by the time of the armistice. The German experiment had failed. However many in southern Germany were now more in favour of unification than ever before. King Frederick Augustus II of Saxobavaria wrote, “We had done what was right, yet we had, in our pride, tried to change the world too quickly.” Prussia had cemented its reputation and finally freed itself from the ghost of Leipzig. Austria-Hungary too had performed well and had now placed itself against the German unification movement. In the next few years little was to change on the map of Germany. However there were two important developments. Firstly with the rise of anti-Prussian and anti-Austrian sentiment, the spirit of Brandtist German unity continue to endure. In 1883 the Brandtists tried again, albeit in a different form. As Austria was distracted by Serbia’s actions in the Balkans the states of Saxobavaria, Hessen, Wurzburg and Wurttemberg formed an economic union. Prussia grumbled but it was not willing to go to war over a glorified customs union. In 1884 the Palatinate joined. In 1885 Trier entered. The customs zone was reworked into a loose political structure known as the German Confederation. Prussia and Austria were irritated, but as the Confederation was far short of a full political union they did nothing. However in 1885 a Brandtist rising overthrew the monarchy in Hannover and portioned to join the Confederation. Prussia was having none of this. The Rhineland Federation also was concerned, Brandtism had of course been growing in the Federal Republic and Dortmund was eager to see the Hanoverian rising dealt with. Prussian troops invaded the short-lived Hanoverian Republic and absorbed it into Prussia. Denmark protested citing treaty obligations to respect Hanover’s independence. Prussia and the Rhineland responded that the treaty promised to respect the independence of the Kingdom of Hanover, not the Republic. Denmark was not amused but took it no further. The second key point was that France was now concerned that in the event of a major war, it (and its German allies) could not defeat the Central Powers. Unless of course the Central Powers were distracted by a second front…

Italy and the Balkans
New Powers on the Rise?

On June 9th 1834 the united Republic of Italy had been declared in Florence by representatives from the Neapolitan Republic as well as the new republican regimes in Tuscany, Modena and Lucca. Though the Papacy remained independent in Rome, only the parts of the peninsula ruled by Sardinia and Austria were not part of the new Italian state. The initial years of the republic were spent organising a government and forming an effective state. For about a year after unification Italy would live through the constitutional conventions as they constantly sought to develop a stable government system. Finally on August 9th 1835 the final Italian Constitution was ratified. The young nation was to become a Federal Republic. The nation would consist of seven federal states: the original four republics (Naples, Lucca, Modena and Tuscany), would be joined by three more carved out of the territories won during the Fourth Silesian War (Parma, Romagna and Umbria-Marche). Florence would be the nation’s capital. The largest of the pre-unification states Naples wanted the capital there, but the other smaller republics wanted to keep it in the north, and Florence was the site of the unification declaration. The new flag was the classic republican tricolour with the colours taken from the four original republics (blue for Naples and white and red for the other three) emblazed with the Florentine fleur-de-lis.

Flag of the Italian Republic:

The first few decades of the republic were quiet. Italy stayed out of European political affairs for the most part, though they did send a small volunteer force to fight in the Second Balkan War alongside the Allied forces against the Russians. The industrial revolution would come slowly to the country. And when it did it would be focused primarily in the north near the border. In time this would lead to political and economic power being shifted to the north of Italy. It was in the late 1870s that things started to get interesting. After decades of effective isolation Italy began to take an interest in the world stage. Nationalism was exploding onto the scene in Germany, the Balkans and elsewhere and this would have two simultaneous effects in Italian government. The first was the rise of the Italian Irredentist movement. Under the leadership of Giovanni Aquila the Italian National Party (Partito Nazionale Italiana or PNI) would become a major force in Italian politics. The PNI would advocate pan-Italian ideas. They would also call for Italy to reclaim rightful Italian lands, specifically absorb the Kingdom of Sardinia, free Venetia from the Hapsburgs and seize Sicily from Aragon. However as Sardinia and Austria were on either side of the increasingly polarised Europe Italy would likely have to choose sides. The second effect of nationalism was to inspire Italy to seek great power status. Italy would, under Prime Minister Aquila, develop close ties with Greece. Despite being a monarchy Greece was eager to secure a friendship with Italy as both sought to emerge as Mediterranean powers and claim lands they saw as rightfully theirs. By the 1880s Italy had developed a respectable navy and its army was not to be dismissed. Further Aquila and the PNI were beginning to eye Libya, currently under the rule of the unstable United Arab Sultanate, hungrily..

Map of Italy 1835:

After the Second Balkan War Turkish power in the Balkans evaporated. However Russia’s bid to supplant the Ottomans as the regions pre-eminent power was checked by the Allied intervention led by Britiain and France. The region was divided between four different states: Serbia, the UKD, Greece and the Pricipality of Zagora (not counting Bosnia which was under Austrian control). All nations were fiends of Russia and the first three had fought alongside the Russians in the war. In the decades following the war however Russian influence would decline. The main reason for this was the effect of the pamphlet Onward Slavic Peoples! by the Serbian intellectual Nikolai Boskovic. The pan-Slavic ideals expressed in this work would have a great impact in the Balkans. Pan-Slavism would become immensely popular in the Serb Kingdom. The Serbian government would become obsessed with the notion of uniting all south Slavs under their rule and becoming a major European power. They also sought to embrace a great Slavic community with Russia, some advocating full political union. Serbia began stirring up pan-Slavic tendencies in the Slavic minorities in its neighbours. In 1883 Serbia gambled on the great powers being distracted elsewhere and invaded and occupied the Principality of Zagora, bringing the Bulgarian Slavs into their fold. Aware of the difficulties in maintain control of their vast lands and numerous ethnicities the government in Belgrade decided to rebrand the state. No longer was it merely the Kingdom of Serbia, but the Kingdom of the South Slavs, or the Kingdom of Jugoslavia, something backed warmly by St. Petersburg which hoped to use Jugoslavia as an ally against the Hapsburgs.

This however obviously upset Jugoslavia’s neighbours. The Greeks had fought with the Serbs and Russians against the Turks in the 1840s. Greece had however been knocked out of the war by the Anglo-French intervention. After war’s end Greece took two lessons from the conflict. First the Turks were no longer a major threat; they had been expelled from the continent and for the time being were focused internally and in the Middle East. Second Greece could not fight a war against Britain and win, or for that matter against France, without backing from a major naval Mediterranean power. Consequently Greece began to distance itself from Russia and sought to improve ties with Britain as well as with Italy. The Jugoslavia issue and the discontent amongst Greece’s own Slavic minority saw Athens seek to balance against the Jugoslavs. Greece signed a pact with Austria-Hungary in 1885 in which Vienna promised to aid Greece in the event of a Jugoslav attack. By the mid 1880s therefore Greece had moved out of the Russian/Jugoslav camp and was aligning itself with the Hapsburgs and Britain. The United Kingdom of the Danube (UKD) had a tougher time, directly bordering both Jugoslavia and Russia. Though they too were concerned, after all the Danubians were not Slavs (for the most part). The UKD instead was courted by both Austria (offering protection from the Pan-Slavic Russians and Jugoslavs) and by Russia (offering Transylvania). In 1884 the UKD declared itself neutral in the case of a future war between Austria and Russia. Though the hope that they could stay out of any major Balkan war may have been a little naïve.

The Americas
Part I: Old Enemies

The Empire of Louisiana had suffered a clear defeat in the American War (1859-1863). It had been forced to cede land to the Américan Republic, New England and Britain’s Native Protectorate, though the absorption of the Freedemen’s Republic had gone some way to mitigating these losses. The more severe effects of the defeat however were the loss of prestige and confidence in the Imperial government as well as the economic consequences of the crippling Anglo-Américan blockade during the war. Emperor Jérôme II took the defeat as a great personal failure. He had hoped to imitate his namesake and grandfather by waging a victorious military struggle. The defeat however had been a serious check to his ambition. Following the war Jérôme II was increasingly distant from political affairs. In the years after the war the Empire would suffer serious economic difficulties. The wartime blockade had seriously crippled the Imperial economy. And in the decade after the war the average Louisianan was affected, as food prices soared and inflation crept up.

All this led to a backlash against the government. Republicanism, a force that had been near non-existent from the time of the founding of the Empire, would re-emerge in this period. The emperor was widely disliked and the politics in the street became increasing radical. Some were openly calling for the removal of the emperor and the formation of a Second Republic. Many of the Louisianan elite had serious fears about open revolution and the Imperial Guard, the elite bodyguard of the Emperor, was deployed throughout New Orleans to keep the peace. Things were exacerbated in the early 1870s with an outbreak of yellow fever. Arguably there were two events that prevented a revolution from occurring. The first was the death in 1872 of the emperor. Jérôme II died of what is believed to have been yellow fever, though there are unconfirmed reports that he may have been assassinated in order to preserve the Empire (his son, the Imperial Guard and others have been blamed). Jérôme was succeeded by his son, Joseph. Joseph, who had married Princess Maria of New Granada, was a different man to his father. Less concerned about the glories of the past, Joseph was eager to move the Empire forward into the modern era. Joseph’s succession was coincidentally well timed with the beginnings of the Imperial economic recovery. Joseph also pioneered new public works to improve health in the cities (mainly the capital). It is ironic therefore that Joseph, so eager to move the country forward, was confronted by the same issue that plagued Louisiana so often in the past. That of course was the second factor in preventing the expected Republican revolution: war with the Confederacy.

Joseph, Emperor of Louisiana:

The Confederacy of American States (CAS) had endured a torrid time since its defeat to Jérôme I in 1821. Following the defeat Virginia (the Confederacy’s largest and most populous state) had seceded and become an independent republic, which had since prospered and established itself as a non-belligerent neutral power. The forced abolition of slavery by Jérôme had crippled the Confederate economy and the nation had seemed on the point of collapse. In 1829 General James Moore had launched a military coup, establishing himself as dictator. The coup had managed to stabilize the CAS. The economy gradually recovered, exports of cotton being of particular help, and Moore managed to hold the country together until his death in 1845. Moore was succeeded by another Confederate general Thomas Leigh who happily took over the role of dictator. Though Leigh also saw over a period of economic recovery he was much harsher on his opponents, which created a growing animosity in parts of the country. North Carolina in particular was growing resentful of the dictatorship in Charleston. Leigh had intended to join in the American War and seek to regain lost land from the Empire as it fought against the Allies. Unfortunately for him he was assassinated in 1861 by a rival general Charles Myer. Myer and his chief adversary General Alexander Jackson fought a brief civil war for control of the country, which Jackson eventually won. Jackson’s first decade in charge was tenuous; cracks in the CAS were becoming increasingly visible. To make things worse European powers (specifically Britain and France) were turning to other sources of cotton from Egypt and India impacting on the Confederate economy. Jackson sought to unify the country and create a distraction from the economic troubles by waging war against the Free Republic of Florida (FRF) in the south. The FRF, like Virginia, had established itself as a neutral power. Florida had grown rich on trade from the Gulf and as a neutral in the American War had served as the only safe port of conduct for many merchantmen in the area. After the war however Florida had grown cautious about Confederate intentions. In 1870 Britain had declared Florida under its protection after the Floridians had appealed. When it became clear that Britain would indeed support Florida, Jackson backed down. Instead he chose to capitalize on a small border disagreement in 1873 and declare was on the Empire of Louisiana. The two old enemies were at war once more.

The Fourth Louisianan-Confederate War would be fought from 1873-1875. This final great conflict would result in the end of one of these two historic foes. The war started well enough for the Confederacy. Louisiana was not expecting an attack and Confederate forces swarmed over the border. By the end of 1873 all Imperial lands east of the Mississippi were in Confederate hands. The CAS had been forged into a single force behind Jackson and his forces were pushing deeper into the Empire. Joseph, Emperor of Louisiana however would prove to be too canny of an opponent. The invasion shocked the Empire. The Emperor however seized the opportunity. The New Orleans Eagle (a pro-Imperial and most widely read newspaper in the Empire) began churning out reports of Confederate savagery and printing copies of the Emperor’s speeches calling on the Louisianan people to “Defend the Revolution” and “drive back our habitual foe”. Imperial support swelled and the Louisianans rallied. Despite their defeat the Louisianan army had learnt much from the American War, whereas the Confederates had not fought a real war for half a century. As the elite Imperial forces arrived from the west, led by the Emperor, the tide of battle swung. Louisiana won two key battles at Alencon and Langdeu forcing the Confederates back. As the blue coats gradually gained the upper hand the internal cracks in the CAS resurfaced. As Louisianan forces drove into the CAS proper North Carolina “pulled a Virginia” and seceded from the Confederacy. Panic gripped Charleston and Jackson was overthrown and a new regime headed by a cadre of military officers and elites offered peace terms. Joseph accepted. North Carolinan independence was accepted, the CAS would pay a large reparation sum to the Empire and border disputes were adjusted in the Empire’s favours. For Louisiana and especially Emperor Joseph the war was a godsend. A crushing triumph the war had ended the feeling of doom and defeatism in the country, faith in the Emperor had been restored and the war reparations and war-time industrial boom had helped drive Louisianan economic growth. The war would mark the end of the CAS however. With North Carolina gone the rump-Confederacy was doomed. After six months of political deadlock the military rallied around an ambitious general James Davidson who seized power and abolished the former Confederacy. Seeing time and again the triumph of monarchist Louisiana over the inept government in Charleston Davidson had had enough. On November 9th 1875 declared himself James I of the Kingdom of Carolina.

Imperial artillery at the Siege of Savannah (1875)

The Americas
Part II: North America

The Américan Republic emerged from the war of 1859-1863 as the most powerful state in the Americas. Tejas had been brought into its sphere and it had gained land and financial indemnities from Louisiana and from New Granada. Its armies, after initial setbacks, had rallied and driven out the invading armies from north and south. The next few years would be a golden age for América. The decline of Louisiana enabled América to emerge as the dominant economic force in North America, rivaled only by the maritime prowess of New England. Investment in industry, so encouraged during the war, and financial investment by outside powers, notably Britain, saw serious developments in the Américan economy. Going hand in hand with economic strength was a new sense of purpose amongst the Américan people. Victory over Louisiana had seen América now wish to establish itself as a global, not only a regional, power. The Américan Navy was greatly expanded as they took part in the new naval arms race. By 1880 América had established the world’s sixth largest navy behind only the four great European naval powers (Britain, France, Russia and Portugal) as well as just shy of the New Englander fleet. Expansion in the Pacific became the name of the game. The greatest interest in this period was over the Hawaiian Islands. France had long established an interest in this island group. The French however had never been able to fully bring the islands into their sphere. In 1878 América sent a naval expedition to the islands forcing the local government to submit at gunpoint to Américan control. France protested but lacked the naval strength to intervene in the central Pacific, especially with América’s ally Britain backing them up. Though after this France would increase its own Pacific Fleet, based at Manilla. Hawaii was by 1885 solidly under Américan rule. It was however true that the economic boom in the country had greatly benefited the Américan elite much more than the average citizen It has led to many, since and at the time, to label this the “Gilded Era”: wealth for the elite and industrial expansion yet many still struggled in poverty. Tensions would grow in this period between the two classes. New movements would spring up advocating rights for the workers and an end to the increasingly corrupt rule in Mexico City, especially in the urban industrial centers. As the economic growth of the country shuddered to a halt in the late 1880s, these tensions were exacerbated. The elite in the Américan government had become distant from the day to day situation on the streets. As class tensions rose, Californian separatism (beaten but not crushed in the Civil War) also began to stir its head. Covert Louisianan agents were abound in this period throughout América abetting the stresses in their society, as well as in Tejas which had begun to try and move out of its position as a vassal of Mexico City. América was now approaching a crossroads as internal tensions grew, the question remained however for the future: reform or revolution?

The Américan Battlecruiser Veracruz en route to the Hawaiian Islands:

The Commonwealth of New England likewise had emerged triumphant in the war. It had gained new land in the west from Louisiana. The land was a welcome boom considering the rapidly increasing population of the Commonwealth. The New Englander economy would skyrocket in the next few decades, feeding the rapid expansion of their navy which was taking place. The African bases that had been seized from France in the war became centres of growing overseas colonies, useful bases in New England’s growing global commercial empire. To add to this New England purchased the Maldives Islands from Spain in 1880. Spain had been in a period of financial slowdown and leapt at the chance to sell the islands which Boston sought to use as a naval base in the South Atlantic. The transition to an independent state was a smooth one for New England and unlike América it managed to ensure a more equally beneficial economic rise. The war to their south and the collapse of the CAS was a surprise to many in New England but there was little sympathy for the Confederates. New England would also play host to the development of the new sport of Rugby football in this period. Football had spread from England and become very popular in parts of North America. In 1879 in the town of Rugby in Ohio this new sport was created. It became widely popular in the Commonwealth before spreading to the British Dominions, Virginia, North Carolina, Quebec and Louisiana. The Dominions of Canada and Columbia would also continue their upward trajectory.

Quebec was in a different boat. It had been on the losing side of the American War yet it itself had performed war. The wall of Quebecois fortifications on their border with New England had held well, the so-called “Bastion Line”. Also Franco-Quebecois forces had driven deep into Canada. In the next few years Quebec, still a part of France, would invest in continuing to update and improve the Bastion Line. Industrialization would spread into Quebec from neighbouring New England coupled with investment and expertise from France. Immigration, chiefly from France, the Low Countries and Aragon, would continue in this period, though the region remained overwhelmingly loyal to France and the Bourbon monarchs. Quebec City and Montreal would become major metropolitan centres. Rugby would come to Quebec from across the border and become widely popular, despite its “Yankee origins”. In 1884 the world’s first rugby international would take place between Quebec (playing in sky blue shirts) and New England (dark green) in Montreal, which New England won 13-9.[1]

A photo from the 1884 match:

[1] The more pedantic argue that this should not qualify as the first international as Quebec was not in itself a nation state (being a part of France). They claim that the 1887 game between New England and Virginia should claim this right. Though most don't really buy this argument.

The Nations of North America 1880

Nation Name: The Américan Republic (La República Américana)
Government Type: Federal Presidential Republic
Head of State: President Antonio Torres
Head of Government: First Minister Alejandro Salvez
Capital: Mexico City
Population: 17,200,000
Languages: Spanish
National Anthem: Advance the Republic! (¡Avanza, República!)

Nation Name: The Empire of Louisiana (L'Empire de la Louisiane)
Government Type: Absolute Monarchy
Head of State: Emperor Joseph Bonaparte
Capital: New Orleans
Population: 10,600,000
Languages: French, English
National Anthem: Long live the Emperor! (Vive l'Empereur!)

Nation Name: The Commonwealth of New England
Government Type: Federal Parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Edward VII
Head of Government: First Minister David Clinton
Capital: Boston
Population: 15,300,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: From Pine to Sea / God Save the King
Flag: (the flag mirrors the nation's anthem From Pine to Sea. The middle represents the land and the national symbol of the Pine with the blue the waters on either side (Atlantic and the Mississippi).

Nation Name: Republic of Tejas (República de Tejas)
Government Type: Presidential Republic
Head of State: President Felipe Santiago
Capital: Seville
Population: 1,200,000
Languages: Spanish, French, English
National Anthem: This, Our Land (Esto, Nuestra Tierra)
Flag: (they adopted the republican tricolour of Louisiana. The three colours symbolising the three "peoples" of Tejas: English, French and Spanish speaking.)

Nation Name: Commonwealth of Virginia
Government Type: Presidential Republic
Head of State: President Anthony Moore
Capital: Richmond
Population: 1,300,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: The Battle Hymn of Virginia
Flag: (the flag of England in the top-left corner symbolises the "Old Dominion's" roots whereas the torch of liberty demonstrates the country's independent spirit. The dates reflect Viginia's independence from Britain and from the C.A.S.)

Nation Name: Republic of North Carolina
Government Type: Presidential Republic
Head of State: Charles Dillon
Capital: Charlotte
Population: 1,119,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: Banner of the Republic
Flag: (adopted after independence from the C.A.S. The colours of the old state now in a republican tricolour of the Américan style)

Nation Name: Kingdom of Carolina
Government Type: Absolute Monarchy
Head of State: James I
Capital: Charleston
Population: 3,350,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: The Carolinan March
Flag: (flag adopted at the ascension of James I and the establishment of the kingdom. Containing the old crescent symbol of South Carolina and the stag which is the emblem of House Davidson)

Nation Name: Free Republic of Florida
Government Type: Parliamentary Republic
Head of State: First Minister George Thompson
Capital: Tampa
Population: 860,000
Languages: English, Native Languages
National Anthem: We Free Florida Men
Flag: (the three colours represent the three races of Florida: white man, black freed slave and the 'red-man' Indians. The three stars correlatae to the three native tribes that originally inhabited the Native Republic of Florida)

Nation Name: Dominion of Columbia
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Edward VII
Head of Government: First Minister Webster Jameson
Capital: Charlotte
Population: 1,200,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: God Save the King
Flag: (Union flag in corner. The Columbia river is symbolized as is the famous Columbian salmon, which is the de facto symbol of Columbia)

Nation Name: Dominion of Canada
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Edward VII
Head of Government: First Minister Luke Samuels
Capital: Newcastle
Population: 2,935,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: God Save the King
Flag: (the Union Flag with the royal coat of arms and the Canadian symbol of the beaver)

Nation Name: Quebec (France)
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Louis XIX
Head of Government: Governor Henry Foix
Capital: Quebec (Paris)
Population: 4,335,000
Languages: French
National Anthem: God Save the King (Dieu Sauve le Roi)
Flag: The maple leaf has long been a symbol of French Canada.

(Courtesy of the very talented Marc Pasquin)

Nation Name: Russian Alayska (Russia)
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Peter V
Capital: New Archangel
Population: 135,000
Languages: Russian
National Anthem: God Save the Tsar! (Боже, Царя храни!)
Flag: The Flag of the Russian Empire

Nation Name: Protectorate of Indiana
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Edward VII
Capital: Tanka Wicoti
Population: 230,000
Languages: English, Various Sioux Languages
National Anthem: God Save the King
Flag: None. The Union Flag is used instead.

(Note. Many of you may be wondering where the info and flag of the Union of the Plains is. Well this should have been mentioned in the previous update but the UotP has been absorbed by its neighbours. The declining numbers of the native tribes and their inferiority vis-a-vis their modern industrial neighbours saw their nation overrun and divided between Canada, Columbia, Louisiana and América)


The Americas
Part III: South America

The Kingdom of New Granada had been on the losing side of the American War. It had however not truly been defeated. Though it had suffered naval reverses at the hands of the Américans and the British its army had performed well in the Panamanian Theatre. In fact at war’s end Granadan forces still occupied parts of Américan territory. After the war New Granada would focus on preparing for the next round of conflict with América whilst expanding its influence, as (like América) New Granada in this period began to look beyond its own borders. The alliance with France would remain the most vital foreign policy objective of the government in Cartagena. French investment continued in the country and political (and personal) links between the two countries would develop further. In 1880 Juan II succeeded his father, Francisco, as king. One of his first acts was to arrange a betrothal between his daughter Andrea to the second son of Louis XIX of France, Henry; and of course New Granada had already established a dynastic link with the Bonapartes in Louisiana. French aid was vital in the re-construction of the Granadan navy and the industrial development of the country. Throughout this period New Granada began to assert itself more on the world stage. It began establishing control over several Pacific islands as bases for maritime trade and naval stations. Cartagena sought to spread its influence closer to home. The neighbouring United Ecuadorian Republics had enjoyed a torrid time since its independence. The various factions in the country had twice almost brought the UER to open civil war. Seeing an opportunity New Granada began to covertly back one faction in the country. When riots in the capital Quito toppled the unpopular elected government, New Granada encouraged its allies in the country to seize power, which they did. With help from New Granadan troops this monarchist faction cemented its power and the leader of the faction, Carlos Santiago, was made king. The Kingdom of Ecuador would become a firm ally of New Granada. Into the 1880s tensions would begin to mount between New Granada and the dominant South American power, Brasil, as both sought to establish themselves as the regional power.

Peru like Ecuador would struggle in the years after it’s the turmoil of its independence from Spain, the war with Brasil and the subsequent civil war which saw Ecuador break-off. A series of unstable republican governments plagued the country as its economic growth sputtered and died. The monarchist coup in Ecuador in 1873 however would provide a jolt to the government in La Paz. Fearing similar actions in their country the Peruvian government cracked down on monarchist groups and rallied behind the Progressive party which was the dominant liberal force. Under the Progressives Peru would recover from the early years. The country would begin to modernize and a new self-image as the “Republican Bastion” of South America would help unify the country. Strangely this period would see Peru draw closer to its old rival Brasil. The two were both concerned over the rise of New Granada and trade and investment between the two developed rapidly, encouraged by the European powers Britain and Portugal who were eager to contain the French backed New Granada. Not all in Peru were overjoyed by this chain of events however. Political stabilization had resulted in the centering of power amongst the elites and increased gaps between the classes, akin to events in América. The Peruvian politician and writer Ignacio Salazar would write a series of essays from 1873-1876 (together known as The Articles on Injustice) in which he argued for a new form of state that was classless and placed all industry into the hands of worker’s collectives aimed at forming an egalitarian republic. Salazar’s writings would become popular amongst like-minded individuals throughout Peru and elsewhere. The Articles on Injustice would launch Salazarism as a political philosophy; part of the larger ideology that became known as Collectivism.

Ignacio Salazar, 1875:

La Plata and Córdoba had split following the civil war in the 1840s. Since then both countries had progressed, but slowly, far behind Brasil or New Granada. La Plata fortunately benefited from a stronger and more efficient government. It, like New Granada, was drawn into the French orbit and signed several agreements with France, for instance allowing France to establish a naval base. In addition La Plata and Aragon enjoyed a rapprochement as the two Bourbon kingdoms began to move towards reconciliation. Córdoba however did not do as well, internal factions plagued the country and it was never able to match the rise of its neighbour. After the death of Carlos, King of Córdoba, in 1874 the La Platans decided to take advantage. Under their new king, Ferdinand, they invaded their neighbour triggering the Patagonian War (1874-1877). Despite successes the La Platans (backed by France and Aragon) failed to take the city of Córdoba itself, but were able to conquer huge swathes of the country in south and east. When peace was signed in 1877 Córdoba had been reduced to a rump state whilst La Plata had doubled in size and established itself as a credible power in its own right. Córdoba was plunged into chaos in the wake of the defeat and the assassination of their new king Carlos II. Eventually order was restored by an alliance of politicians, generals and businessmen who (with tactic British and Portuguese/Brasilian backing) established a republic.

La Platan and Córdoban troops clash in the Patagonian War:

Of all the powers in South America, Brasil was undoubtedly the strongest in this period. Whereas its neighbours experienced coups and war, Brasil prospered. Under Princes Miguel (until 1871) and his son Francisco, Brasil remained a key part of the Portuguese Empire. In fact by 1880 it is arguable that Brasil was the stronger part of the union with Lisbon. The population swelled so that by 1880 the population of Brasil was over 14 million (making it the third most populous country in the Americas). Rio de Janiero, the autonomous capital of Brasil, became a huge modern metropolis with great public works and a booming financial centre, rivalled only by New York in the Americas. Brasil was soon providing the lion’s share of men and munitions to the Portuguese army (though the navy remained predominately Portuguese) and soon was taking charge of running Portugal’s West African colonies. Despite its rise Brasil suffered little from republican or secessionist movements in this period and the country remained overwhelmingly loyal to the King in Lisbon and to remaining part of the union (it has been hypothesized that letting the heir presumptive reign in Brasil was a master stroke for relations. Brasilians would become used to the future monarch and would then see the king/queen in Lisbon as “their” monarch upon their ascension). Brasil would however become concerned about New Granada’s rise in power and would seek to counter their influence and expand their own (hence the support for the events in Córdoba). The South American continent was becoming increasingly bipolar. This division was made fact with the 1880 signing of the Triple Alliance between New Granada, Ecuador and La Plata which represented a significant power bloc possibly capable of overwhelming Brasil. Seeking to counter the Triple Alliance, Brasil signed an alliance of its own with the Córdoban Republic before establishing a defensive agreement with Peru. South America was now divided between two armed camps.

South America 1880

The Kingdoms of New Granada, Ecuador and La Plata have formed the Triple Alliance and are all, to varying extents, allies of France in the increasingly divided world.

Brasil (still part of the Portuguese Empire who are allied with Britain) has formed a counter alliance with the Cordoba, in which it recently helped establish a republic. Portugal-Brasil has also recently formed a pact with its old enemy Peru.

The flag of Brasil is that of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brasil and the Algarves established earlier in the century. New Granada has the old republican tricolour bearing the coat of arms of the monarchy (taken from the coat of arms of the city of Bogota, and adopted by the ruling family). Ecuador has recently become a kingdom and has added the crowned condor (the new royal emblem) to their old flag. The Republic of Peru has a tricolour of their colours (possibly inspired by those of Spain) containing the Sun, a representation of the Incan god Inti a popular symbol in Peru and elsewhere on the continent. Cordoba has adopted a new republican tricolour following the coup there. La Plata has the royal coat of arms of House Bourbon on top of a sun image on a sky blue and white flag.


“The Games We Men Play”
The Middle East

The borders of the Middle East had been redrawn following the Second Balkan War and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. The old Ottoman state had been rebranded as the Sultanate of Turkey which controlled Anatolia and Mesopotamia. Though smaller, the Turkish state was more manageable and carried on with its reforms that had been begun earlier but had slowed during the reign of Selim III. From Tripoli in the west to Damascus in the east a new independent empire had emerged. Driven by the political and religious zeal of the Whaheydi movement, a unified Arab Sultanate had broken free of Turkish rule. Committed to the strict form of Islam inspired by the Delhi Sultanate, the Arab Sultanate was a mix of factions and ambitions centred in Cairo. To their east was Persia, an ancient kingdom that would soon find itself the centre of attention from the European powers.

Ismet Turan was a leading Turkish general, who, after leading the Ottoman armies in the Second Balkan War, was crowned the first Sultan of the post-Ottoman state. The Turan Dynasty would re-organise and modernise the old empire into the modern Sultanate of Turkey. Infrastructural reforms and bureaucratic streamlining would see Turkey transition to a more modern European style state. Taking the reform a step further Ismet’s son, Kadir I, decided to adopt Latin script and reform the Turkish language as well as overseeing the continued military reform of his father. Under the reigns of Ismet I (1843-1855), Kadir I (1855-1864), Ismet II (1864-1880), and Mehmet I (1880-) the Turan family would transform Turkey into a serious regional power. Throughout this period Britain would remain a firm ally of Constantinople. Geo-politically Turkey was a key ally in Britain’s continued efforts to contain the rising power of the Russian Empire and prevent St. Petersburg gaining access to the Mediterranean. British aid, investment and advice would be key in the Turkish rebirth.

Unlike Turkey the Arab Sultanate would not enjoy such a golden age. The Arab nation would be continually plagued by internal divisions. The Whaheydi radicals would try and implement an Islamic state in the region and were avid opponents of European influence. The first few years saw a period of stability under the first Sultan Omar Ali. Omar had overseen Egyptian independence from the Ottomans and had formed an alliance with the Whaheydi movement. After his death however rivalry between radicals, moderates and others would undermine the government in Cairo. France had established influence in Egypt during its struggle for independence and had continued to increase its presence in the region, contributing to the diversity of interests in Cairo. In 1876 Libya attempted to break off from Cairo’s rule. The resulting chaos proved an opportunity for the young Italian Republic. Seeking to establish itself as great power Italy invaded the disputed Libyan region. Crushing the Arab forces in the Italian-Arab War (1876-77), Italy seized control of Libya establishing its first colony. The defeat proved the final blow for the Arab kingdom as the reigning Sultan, Muhammad, was deposed in a radical Whaheydi coup. The coup was defeated however when French forces entered Cairo in force, eager to establish order amid fears that Britain would use the chaos as an opportunity to supplant France as the dominant European power in Egypt. A puppet regime was installed in Cairo and France secured control of Egypt. Likewise the Muslim holy cities of Mecca and Medina were joined in the Sultanate of Mecca, another French vassal. Britain was aghast at this explosion of French influence as the Arab Sultanate imploded. Eager to seize a bit of the pie for itself, Britain (acting from its base on Cyprus) landed forces in Syria which was in a state of anarchy. Damascus was seized and Britain established its own client state in the region. These actions contributed greatly to Anglo-French tension, exacerbated by their competition for influence in Oman. In 1885 France completed the construction of the Suez Canal, aimed at generating great riches for France and acting as a shortcut to French territories in the Philippines and East Asia.

French engineers at work on the Suez Canal (1883):

Persia would also be a centre of European competition in this period. Under the rule of the Qajar Dynasty, Persia had fought a number of wars against the Delhi Sultanate to their east. Consequently they become friends of Britain who was a rival of Delhi in India. Like in Turkey, Britain sought to bring Persia under their rule. The Persian kings however were able to play the British off against their great rival, Russia, and prevent themselves falling under the influence of either totally. By the 1880s Britain and Russia were in a battle for influence for the lands from Constantinople to Japan. France too had broken into this competition establishing itself in Egypt and Arabia. This rivalry, complete with espionage, political manoeuvring and colonial expansion, between the three powers was dubbed “the Great Game” by the British press following a letter by the British Ambassador in Persia who when discussing Anglo-Russian competition in the country, wrote, “oh the games we men play, with the fate of nations and people as nothing more than pieces on a board”. The Great Game and the struggle for influence in Asia would be one of the contributing factors in the outbreak of the Great War.

The Age of Imperialism

The Age of Imperialism
Part I: Africa

Starting in the late 1870s up until the outbreak of the Great War, the great powers began a series of campaigns aimed at settling new colonies and territories in Africa and carving up the lands of the “Dark Continent”. This rush for colonial real estate was abetted by the significant develops in warfare and technology of the previous years, coupled with other discoveries/innovations such as the developments with quinine pioneered in France. The continent would see a series of expeditions, explorations, wars, skirmishes and settlements as the colonising powers competed with one another, and the elements as well as the natives, to break into the African interior.

Though numerous nations would be involved in the so-called “Race for Africa” [1] the process would be dominated by the so-called colonising “Big Three”, in terms of African imperial adventures anyway; those were of course Britain, France and Portugal. France was arguably the most aggressive and ambitious of the nations involved. France had long had a presence in Africa, wherein it had established colonies and bases in Ivoriland and West Africa. More recently French influence on the continent had been expanded with the conquest of Tunisia and then with the French hawk’s ruthless capitalisation of the collapse of the Arab Sultanate, bringing Egypt into Paris’ sphere. The French king, Louis XIX was a strong believer that France should be the leading power in Africa which he saw as “France’s continent”, conceding that Britain was the dominant influence in much of Asia as well as of course Australia. Louis was much taken with the ideas of British writer Anthony Walsh who argued in favour of colonialism calling it the “Christian duty of the white man to aid and civilize our backward negro kin”. The French monarchy would sponsor numerous expeditions aimed at mapping the African interior. The most famous of course was that of Lucien Blanc who traveled down the Nile searching for its source and was gone on his campaign for close on three years. The travels of Blanc would become famous throughout Europe and would inspire many to travel to Africa to seek their fortune. As French control followed the Nile south into the Sudan as well as simultaneously spreading westward from its colonies on the other side of the continent the French government began determined to link up its lands on either side of Africa, King Louis calling for a blue line from the Atlantic to the Red Sea. France in its efforts to expand its influence would come into conflict with the African kingdom of Aethiopia. France would fight two wars with the kingdom (1884-1887 and in 1889) which would eventually seem them topple the government and, like in Egypt, place a puppet monarch on the throne. Efforts to purchase Mysore’s East African colony would however be rebuffed. France’s campaign south down the Nile river would bring them into conflict with their northward pushing arch-rival, Britain.

French explorer Lucien Blanc in Sudan 1880:

Britain, like France, had a long history of maintaining an African presence. The British had established control over lands in southeast and southwest Africa, as well as in the Gold Coast. During this period the British would also enlarge their domains. The Gold Coast colony would become a focal point of British settlement, becoming the UK’s most profitable and important African colony. In the south Britain also funded expeditions aimed at linking its two territories. Portugal was doing likewise and the two developed a major rivalry in terms of exploring and settling the heartland. Unlike the Anglo-French race further north the competition with the Portuguese was more light-hearted and the friendly challenge between the two old allies was lapped up by the press (in both countries) as the two sought to link their various colonies across the heartland. King Edward VII of Britain and Miguel I of Portugal had an animated and cordial correspondence over the issue. Britain would also explore the “African Great Lakes”, the largest of which was named after the late queen and dubbed Lake Charlotte [2]. As British explorers pushed north they came in contact with French settlers coming south. Skirmishes and raids between them were rampant. Portugal meanwhile had, under Isabel and then Miguel, been expanding its own colonial holdings, as well as of course defeating the Dutch in a border conflict earlier in the century. In competition with Britain it sought to settle the interior as well as simultaneously cementing its control over its Moroccan protectorate. Portugal was concerned about the Anglo-French clashes in the heart of the continent and was eager to avoid war breaking out between the two, though it has been revealed since that Miguel promised Edward in a series of letters that, although he wished to avoid a major war breaking out over African competition, Portugal would support Britain if it came to it. This wish to prevent war is arguably the chief reason for the Lisbon Conference in 1894.

The Netherlands was, after the Big Three, probably the European power with the most involvement in the “Race”. Dutch South Africa was a blossoming power in this period. Immigration continued at an impressive rate, and cities and modern infrastructure began to dot the territory. Unfortunately for the Dutch the imperial overextension of the previous decades combined with the defeats to Mysore and Portugal, compounded with the monarchist coup had undermined the rule of the kingdom in South Africa. Pro-independent and republican sentiment was strong in South Africa and the colony was operating under a large degree of autonomy. A poorly organized rising in Cape Town was put down by Dutch troops who cracked down on such groups whenever they could. To escape the rule of the far-away Netherlands many settlers went north. After a few skirmishes with Dutch troops these settlers set up two independent republics and broke with the Netherlands. The subsequent Afrikaner Wars in the late 1880s and early 1890s were fought as the Dutch sought to regain control of these lands. They were beaten back by the settlers however and were forced to accept the independence of these settler states at Lisbon. Elsewhere on the continent Denmark would expand its control from its colonies in West Africa and the south. The Danes were a rising maritime power and the importance of securing naval bases and resupply points along the African coast was a high priority for Copenhagen. Spain, Mysore, Aragon, New England and the Rhineland Republic were also caught up in the “Race”, all seeking to enlarge their existing domains, with the Indian empire of Mysore rejecting French advances to purchase its East African territories which helped Mysore secure a presence in the western Indian Ocean. Others too sought a “piece of the pie” with Prussia, Austria-Hungary and Greece all staking claims. The Lisbon Conference of 1894 was aimed at finalizing the division of the continent to prevent war over competing claims. Though there were representatives from fifteen nations there (none African), decisions were largely taken by the Big Three. Interestingly enough was the comments of Patrick O’Connell (an Irishman who was aide to the British representative) who saw the respect afforded the Mysorean delegation. Rather than being seen as backward the Mysore representatives were seen as equals by the other powers, indeed their wishes were taken with more weight by the Big Three than say those of Aragon or Greece. This is perhaps indicative of the Mysorean victory over the Dutch that had catapulted them into world attention, and is interesting that the bleak view of Africans held by the great powers (them seen by many as “lesser men” of inferior evolutionary status, in line with the arguments of Francis Stoneam [3] of New England), was in contrast to their interpretation of Indian culture. The Lisbon Conference carved up Africa. France got its “coast-to-coast blue line” whilst Britain received huge chunks of central Africa and Portugal secured control over the Congo Basin. The independence of the Afrikaner Republics was recognized whilst simultaneously no African state existed that was not a puppet of a European power. Lisbon was the Age of Imperialism made manifest.

The Lisbon Conference 1894:

[1] Coined by the London Times, 1888
[2] OTL Lake Victoria
[3] TTL's Charles Darwin


The Age of Imperialism
Part II: Asia and the Pacific

As Africa was divided amongst the great powers at the Lisbon Conference, Asia and the Pacific Ocean were also being carved up. East Asia had long been a focal point of European interest. Britain, France and the Netherlands had dominated most of the region but Portugal, Spain and even Denmark had established themselves to one degree or another; not to mention the rising powers of Mysore to the west and Chosun (Korea) and, to a lesser extent, Japan in the north. In the Pacific Ocean a scramble was underway for control of the various islands, useful for naval bases, commercial opportunities or simply imperialist pride. France, which had lost out on the Hawaiian Islands to América, had claimed huge swathes of islands in the Pacific acting out of its base in Manila. Britain too seized several islands in the southern and western Pacific. The large island of New Guinea had been colonized by Britain in the east and Spain in the west. Consequently in 1888 the two countries formally divided the island between them. The Dutch likewise picked up a few islands as did Japan which had begun transforming itself into a modern state, aided in large part by their British ally. The Japanese, eager to assert themselves, had competed with both France as well as América over several islands; though in most cases their wishes were overridden by the established great power, generating much resentment in Japan. In the eastern Pacific the Américan Republic, which controlled the Hawaiian Islands, extended its reach. France as well as New Granada took the rest. In the East Indies, Denmark (which had established a base in the neighbouring kingdom of Viet Nam) and Portugal were seeking to undermine the already creaking Dutch rule over the islands.

On the Asian mainland however the greatest issue was China. Reeling from the collapse of the Qing Dynasty, China had fallen into a three-way civil war in the late 1860s. Three factions competed over the carcass of the Qing: in the north the remnants of the Qing state had been seized by the anti-European General Xu, in the south the British had backed Chinese republicans who were setting up a parliamentary state based from Guangzhou, and in the middle a Dutch backed army under a General Tung. Further Xinjiang and Mongolia had broken off into the Russian sphere, Tibet had declared independence (soon brought under British protection), whilst several warlords caved out petty kingdoms in the centre. The “Twenty Years Crisis” would devastate China as the warlords and the three main factions campaigned the length and breadth of China. Eventually however the “Tung faction” collapsed. Their position between the two others was of course not helpful, yet it was the drying up of Dutch aid (due to that nation’s economic collapse and general decline) that doomed then. The southern faction, branding itself the “Republic of China”, began to push north, armed and aided by the British. The northern group (now led by Xu’s capable son) was pushed back. The younger Xu lacked his father’s xenophobia and accepted the help of Russia (who were of course eager to gain influence and counter their great rivals the British). As Russian arms and modern artillery became available the Xu struck back. The warlords were crushed and Republican forces pushed back. Eventually, due to sheer exhaustion, peace was organized in 1888. The Republic’s hold of the south was recognized with the border roughly along the Yangtze. In the north the new Empire of China (the young Xu claiming the old imperial title) reigned from Beijing. China was now formally divided into two.

Forces of the Empire of China near the frontline c.1886. Note the Russian supplied weaponry and uniforms:

Elsewhere the Kingdom of Chosun (Korea) had continued its internal reforms and progress. Chosun had seized southern Manchuria from the Qing in the 1860s, and, although it suffered setbacks against Russian troops, had earned its position as a respected middle rank power. Industry boomed fuelled by Manchurian ore, and the army was improved based on experiences against the Russians. A string of fortifications were enacted to prevent Russian moves south. During this period Chosun began to drift apart from its former European ally, France. France had become more focused on Africa and soon the Koreans no longer began to see French aid as a necessity. When the alliance with France expired in 1890, Chosun chose not to renew it. Instead the Koreans began to form a closer relationship with Japan. The Japanese had, following the Kōmei Restoration, started to modernise; though they were a few decades behind Chousn. Japan, formal ally of Britain, had focused on expanding their navy which, following the construction of two modern battlecruisers in 1889, was the third largest in the western Pacific (after the British and French Pacific Fleets). Japan had begun to seek imperial expansion abroad and had set its eyes on Dutch Taiwan and French territory (mainly the Philippines) as well as the conquest of the breakaway Kingdom of Ezo (under Russian protection). Consequently the Anglo-Japanese Alliance remained strong as British support was seen as essential by Tokyo in case of war. Korea, which had managed to seize the Qingdao Peninsula during the Twenty Years Crisis in China, had begun to see its greatest rival as Russia. The Russian armies on the Manchurian border and the new pro-Russian Chinese Empire were seen as serious threats in Seoul. Consequently Korea began to court Britain and Japan. Seoul sought Japanese assistance in the event of war with Russia. Though neither the Koreans nor Japanese liked the other too much the Koreans were seriously concerned that if war would come with Russia they would be exposed to a Japanese invasion. Tokyo on the other hand came to see Korea as a useful ally in their bid to re-conquer Hokkaido as well as possibly seize Russian Sakhalin (Korea had promised to give its half of that island to Japan in the event Tokyo aided them versus the Russians) and more of Russia’s Far East. Consequently, with the British eagerly looking on, the Korean-Japanese Alliance was signed in 1894. This alliance would see France counter by establishing Siam as a protectorate as well as reinforcing its Pacific Fleet in Manila.

One of Japan's first Battlecruisers:

The biggest legacy of the Korean-Japanese alliance would be in Europe. This alliance and the (apparent) loss of Korea to the British greatly worried both France and Russia. The French had already been courting St. Petersburg following the War of 1880 in Germany, eager to bring the Tsar onto their side in the event of future war with the Central Powers. The Russians, already receptive due to their wish for Polish territory and their general antipathy for the Austrians and Prussians, became even more so as the Great Game heated up in Asia and the treaty between Seoul and Tokyo was signed. In 1895 in St. Petersburg the Franco-Russian Alliance was signed. A few months later Saxobavaria joined, forming the Triple Entente. Less than five years later the world would be engulfed in the Great War.

East Asia - 1895


(1) The Second Delhi Sultanate
(2) Nepal (British Protectorate)
(3) Bhutan (British Protectorate)
(4) Siam (French Protectorate)
The Great War (1899-1903)


The Countdown to War
Europe (1885-1899)

“A great storm is coming. Millions of people across Europe can see it, yet none look willing or able to stop it. An eerie silence has descended across the continent. It is the deep breath before the plunge.” – Lord Anthony Lawrence, British Ambassador in Vienna (1896)

In 1875 the Kingdom of Prussia, the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Kingdom of Poland had signed in Budapest the Triple Alliance (more commonly referred to as the Central Powers). This central European power bloc had revolutionized the traditional European balance of power by creating a formidable military alliance in the heart of the continent. The three countries now entered into an unprecedented period of co-operation (both economically and militarily). Poland and Prussia especially grew almost inseparable in this period. In 1887 a customs union was created between them, and regular annual war games became a staple of the military calendar. Austria too played its part in the alliance. Austrian and Prussian forces had fought side-by-side in the War of 1880 against France and the German kingdoms who had been seeking to unify. Following the signing of the Franco-Russian Alliance in 1895 (which Saxobavaria joined later), the Central Powers began preparing for the inevitable conflict. Increased federalization in the German Confederation and tensions in the Balkans made war between the two alliance blocs increasingly likely. The three Central Powers held huge war gaming exercises in 1895 (in Posen), 1896 (Hungary), and in 1897 and 1898 (Galicia). When war came there was division amongst the powers how it should be waged. The Poles wanted to strike into Russia as quickly as possible, preventing the war being fought on their own soil. Austria was concerned about the Balkans and Italy whilst Prussia was fixated on Germany and Berlin hoped a quick victory over the Germans would dissuade Russia from entering the war. All agreed however that a united common strategy was needed. In the end the strategy of the head of the Prussian General Staff, Otto von Steffan, was adopted; the so-called von Steffan Plan. This outlined a combined Austro-Prussian strike west whilst the Poles held in the east. Two Prussian Armies (A.) would invade Saxony from the north whilst simultaneously the Austrian Army of Bohemia (D.) would strike west to sever Saxobavaria in half whilst the1st Army would move north to seize Munich (E.). In the east the Prussian 3rd Army (B.) would move from East Prussia and join with Polish forces (C.) and dig in amongst the incredibly formidable Polish fortifications along their eastern border known as the “Bastion”. Meanwhile Austria would invade Jugoslavia (which had signed an alliance with Russia in 1896) (G.) in the hope of knocking out Russia’s Balkan ally; while (unable to mount offensives everywhere) Austria would remain on the defensive in Italy (F.). The hope was that the Russians could be delayed long enough for the Allies to win in Germany and bring France to the peace table.

The von Steffan Plan:

Elsewhere in Europe the continent continued its trend towards bipolarization. The German Confederation (now comprised of all the German kingdoms excepting of course Prussia and the Federal Republic of the Rhineland) gradually drew closer together; though not too quickly remembering the events of 1880. In 1897 they passed the German Act which created a unified military structure between all the members, adopted a new flag and anthem, a constitution for a German parliament in Munich and a unified currency. A stone’s throw short of full political union it remained within the terms of the 1880 armistice, just. The Central Powers were not fooled and it is arguably only due to the sudden death of the Austrian emperor Francis II and the succession of his son Ferdinand II that prevented a declaration of war. The F.R.R meanwhile was divided. Dortmund was split between “Isolationists” and “Interventionists”, the former wishing to stay out of the war and the latter wanting to enter in support of the Central Powers (pro-French feelings were thin on the ground, though the Rhenish Brandtist German Party did argue for an alliance with the Confederation which was not well received). Indeed the Rhineland was technically still linked with Prussia by the Prussian monarch retaining the title of “Protector of the League” dating back to the Revolutionary Wars. In 1898 Wilhelm III (taking this ceremonial title seriously) pronounced a guarantee of the F.R.R’s borders against foreign aggression. To counter this France sought to bind its dynastic partners Sardinia and Aragon to it. The three nations signed an alliance, known colloquially as the “Bourbon Compact”. The new king of Aragon, Charles, was a young and ambitious man who was determined to reunify all of Spain under his rule; he saw the alliance with Paris as a means to this end. The resulting fallout of this saw the signing of the “Iberian Pact” between Spain and Portugal who were wary of this bellicose king in Barcelona (through the Treaty of Windsor, which had been renewed recently, the Iberian Pact were also linked to Britain). The British meanwhile were seriously worried about the developments on the continent. Elsewhere of course Britain had been competing with France and Russia in the “Great Game” bringing tensions between the three to a great height. London however wished to avoid a global conflict. Though the British saw a war in Germany as inevitable they hoped they could keep Russia out of it, therefore localizing the conflict (ala the War of 1880). To that end in 1899 Britain announced a guarantee of Poland’s borders aimed to keep Russia (and therefore themselves) out of the war, alas this was not to be. A few weeks later on June 9th in Munich the German monarchs (emboldened by the failure of the Central Powers to react in 1897) announced that on January 1st 1900 they would embrace full political unification to signal the new “German century”.

Six days later Prussia declared war on the German Confederation and invaded Saxony. The Great War had begun at last.


The European Powers – 1899
Part I: The Combatants

The Triple Entente

Nation Name: Kingdom of France (Royaume de France)
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Louis XIX
Capital: Paris
Population: 47,000,000
Languages: French
National Anthem: God Save the King (Dieu Sauve le Roi) [1]
Standing Army: 800,000

Nation Name: Russian Empire (Россійская Имперія)
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Peter V
Capital: St. Petersburg
Population: 145,000,000
Languages: Russian
National Anthem: God Save the Tsar! (Боже, Царя храни!) [2]
Standing Army: 1,475,000

Name: The German Confederation (Deutscher Bund)
Government Type: Federal confederation of sovereign monarchies [3]
Head of State: Frederick Augustus III
Capital: Munich
Population: 17,000,000
Languages: German
Anthem: One People, One Germany (Ein Volk, ein Deutschland) [4]
Standing Army: 320,000
Flag: [5]

The Triple Alliance (Central Powers)

Name: The Kingdom of Prussia (Königreich Preußen)
Government Type: Monarchy
Head of State: Wilhelm III
Capital: Berlin
Population: 28,000,000
Languages: German
Anthem: Prussia Victorious (Preußen Siegreichen) [6]
Standing Army: 650,000

Name: The Kingdom of Poland (Królestwo Polskie)
Government Type: Monarchy
Head of State: Michael III
Capital: Warsaw
Population: 23,000,000
Languages: Polish
Anthem: God Save Poland (Boże, coś Polskę) [7]
Standing Army: 400,000

Name: Austro-Hungarian Empire (Österreichisch-Ungarische Monarchie/ Osztrák-Magyar Monarchia)
Government Type:
Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Ferdinand II
Capital: Vienna
Population: 45,000,000
Languages: German, Hungarian, Italian etc.
Anthem: Kaiser’s Hymn (Kaiserhymne) [8]
Standing Army: 700,000

[1] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uoQT7IrUHwM
[2] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVuhxlgb28I
[3] The Confederation is of course not a full political union, but as it has a government (of sorts) and a unified military structure it can be counted as one "unit"
[4] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9t2qQU7olE
[5] The flag of the Confederation is a tricolour of green (for Saxobavaria), white (from various countries) and gold (from Hessia, the Palataniate and Wurzburg). Emblazoned upon it is the new coat of arms of House Wettin-Hesse, adopted by Frederick Augustus III of Saxobavaria (the younger brother of the king of Hesse who inherited the throne of Saxobavaria via a marriage to the daughter of the previous king) who is the official head of the Confederation.
[6] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Skm-tujlEBI
[7] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nW9N9YQvl4k
[8] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yavbVK8RUqg

The European Powers – 1899
Part II

Nation Name: Kingdom of Jugoslavia (Kraljevina Jugoslavija)
Government Type: Absolute Monarchy
Head of State: Stefan II
Capital: Belgrade
Population: 7,000,000
Languages: Serb, Bulgarian etc.
National Anthem: Together Slavic Brothers [1]
Standing Army: 150,000

Nation Name: Kingdom of the Netherlands (Koninkrijk der Nederlanden)
Government Type: Monarchy
Head of State: Alexander II
Capital: Amsterdam
Population: 4,900,000
Languages: Dutch
National Anthem: Wilhelmus [3]
Standing Army: 60,000

Nation Name: Kingdom of Sardinia (Regno di Sardegna)
Government Type: Monarchy
Head of State: Victor III
Capital: Turin
Population: 5,200,000
Languages: Italian
National Anthem: Oh Blessed Crown [4]
Standing Army: 75,000

Nation Name: Kingdom of Aragon (Regne d'Aragó)
Government Type: Monarchy
Head of State: Charles VIII
Capital: Barcelona
Population: 7,900,000
Languages: Catalan, Spanish
National Anthem: Royal March [5]
Standing Army: 125,000

(flag courtesy of Razgriz 2K9)

Nation Name: Kingdom of Portugal, Brasil and the Algarves (Reino de Portugal, Brasil e dos Algarves)
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Miguel I
Capital: Lisbon
Population: 5,500,000
Languages: Portuguese
National Anthem: God Save the King [6]
Standing Army: 125,000

Nation Name: Spanish Republic (República Española)
Government Type: Republic
Head of State: President Juan Francisco Mata
Capital: Madrid
Population: 10,500,000
Languages: Spanish
National Anthem: Long live Spain! (Viva España) [7]
Standing Army: 225,000

Nation Name: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State: Edward VII
Capital: London
Population: 40,500,000
Languages: English
National Anthem: God Save the King [8]
Standing Army: 300,000

[1] Tune: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Se...strumental.ogg
[2] The colours of the pan-Slavic movement and a coat of arms containing those of Serbia and Bulgaria.
[3] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIg9VaMBi9o
[4] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_v2w...68&shuffle=570
[5] Tune: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ma..._Navy_Band.ogg
[6] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63w1ES6VEjI
[7] Tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uWnj_HfoYf8
[8] Tune: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/God_Save_the_Queen

The Great War
Part I: The Clash of Eagles
(June 1899 – December 1899)

The Great War, a conflict that would leave millions dead and change the world forever, began on June 15th 1899 with the Prussian invasion of Saxony. This was a move that was in response to the declaration by the German Confederation that they would seek full political union by year’s end. The Central Powers sprung into action immediately, the heavily researched, organized and rehearsed von Steffan plan was put into action. The Prussian First and Second armies invaded Saxony from the north. The First Army, under the command of Erwin von Manthofen, grandson of the famous Richter von Manthofen, was tasked with seizing Leipzig before driving southwest into the heart of Germany. The Second Army, under Otto von Blücher, would take Dresden before moving south. The Prussian invasion was a great success. The rapid mobilisation and deployment of the Prussians took the German forces by surprise, and they had no choice but to fall back. Leipzig fell in early July, Dresden followed at the end of the month. Simultaneously the armies of the Austro-Hungarian Empire attacked, according to the von Steffan plan. The Austrian Army of Bohemia under the Anglo-Austrian general Duke Charles Jordan von Rigel struck westward aimed at severing Saxobavaria. This move went perfectly, the Austrians achieving stunning success and took the town of Coburg cutting the Saxobavarian state in half. More importantly however this move cut off the northern Saxon forces who were fleeing south from the Prussians. Caught between Duke Charles and von Blücher the German army in Saxony was forced to surrender en masse: a capitulation of roughly 50,000 men, a catastrophe. To make things worse the Austrian 1st Army had invaded Bavaria from the south, aiming at Munich; though here at least German forces were putting up a better resistance. In Berlin, King Wilhelm III declared that the “war will be over by Christmas”.

Prussian soldiers a few miles south of Leipzig, July 1899:

The war was less than three months old and the German situation was already dire for the Entente. The German government had fled from Munich and taken up residence in Stuttgart. Luckily, unlike in the War of 1880, the German Confederation did have a unified military structure and was able to better mobilize its forces and began sending reinforcements to the east, their prime focus being to defend Munich. The French for their part responded quickly. Honouring the Triple Entente, France declared war on the Central Powers and began mobilizing its forces. After the War of 1880 the rail network between France and Germany had been extended to better facilitate the movement of the French Army to the front in the east. Unfortunately this process was delayed by bureaucratic breakdown as the German government (re-organising in Stuttgart) was unable to organize its forces as efficiently as it wished, clogging the roads and rails, delaying France. Secondly Prussian and Austrian agents (it’s easy to infiltrate when we all speak German, ja?) sewed confusion and attacked railway lines. Eventually the Franco-German armies were moving east however. This delay allowed the Central Power forces to further advance against crumbling German resistance. Saxony was completely overrun by mid-August and the Prussian 1st Army under von Manthofen was driving into Wurzburg. Austrian guns began bombarding Munich in late August. The next part of the von Steffan plan called for the Austrian Army of Hungary to invade Jugoslavia before the country could mobilize and threaten the Austrian southern flank. In September therefore Austrian forces invaded the country, who after all was a Russian ally (the Russians had declared war on the Central Powers in August). Jugoslav forces were driven back and Belgrade fell (the government having relocated to Sofia). The Austrian advance drove deeper and deeper into Serbia; they were soon joined by another force from the west as Austrian and Bosnian troops struck east from Austria’s Bosnian protectorate. The Jugoslavs were on the retreat.

Seeing the triumphs of the Central Powers everywhere the Russians, bowing to pressure from Paris, launched their Autumn Offensive westward in late September. The Russians however struck pre-maturely. Their mobilization and organization was not yet complete and it was only the dire situations in Germany and the Balkans that pushed them to attack. The Russians launched 300,000 men into their invasion of Poland. They were checked however by the Polish fortifications, the Bastion, a triumph of five decades of Polish engineering. Try as they might the Russians couldn’t achieve a decisive breakthrough. A particularly bloody assault in the north left the Russian right flank dangerously exposed. The Prussian 3rd Army (moved from East Prussia to aid the Poles as per the von Steffan plan) exploited this weakness and counter-attacked routing the exhausted Russians. Prussian forces did not advance too far though, resources for an offensive were not forthcoming (the fighting in the west taking priority for such) and they did not wish to overexpose themselves. Still the Russian Autumn Offensive had failed. St. Petersburg decided not to rush things again and despite small scale strikes at the Bastion, Russian forces remained on the defensive as the huge Imperial Army began gathering in Belorussia and the Ukraine. The other outcome of this ill-fated adventure was the triggering of the British guarantee of Poland’s borders. Honouring their word (though it must be said the debate in Parliament over this was extremely tense and it was a near run thing), the British government declared war on the Triple Entente. France, who had hoped Britain would stay out, countered bringing (or bullying) its Dutch ally to enter the war as well as triggering the Bourbon Compact, which caused Sardinia and Aragon to enter the conflict. Franco-Sardinian forces immediately began to mobilize in Piedmont for an invasion of Austrian Venetia. In the west the French were concerned that Britain would use Portugal (long a close ally of the UK) as a staging ground to mount a campaign in Iberia, threatening France’s southern flank. To forestall such a move French troops were sent to assist the young and ambitious Charles VIII of Aragon in his bid to re-unify Spain. Franco-Aragonese forces invaded Spain in October pushing Madrid (and its Iberian Pact ally Portugal) into the war. The Spanish however were not prepared for war, a rising in Cuba had their attention and most of the Spanish fleet and frontline troops were in the Caribbean. Taking their Republican cousins by surprise the Aragonese had great success driving deep into Spain, Murcia was overrun and Madrid was in their sights.

Russian forces withdraw eastwards following the failed Autumn Offensive of 1899:

In November, Munich fell to the Austrians. The Central Powers now launched a renewed drive westwards. In the Balkans the Jugoslavs were still being pushed backwards as Greece and the UKD began to both consider intervention, though on which side? The British and French were gearing up for war as French commercial raiders set off to harass British shipping whilst Britain’s Royal Navy began to funnel men and supplies to Portugal as they prepared to help prevent the fall of Madrid, if not all of Spain. French and Sardinian forces invaded Austrian Italy later that month but the Austrians were ready for them and the advance slowed. Here in northern Italy Austrian machine guns and artillery caused havoc amongst the Entente forces, who soon dug in opposite the Austrians to bring up their own heavy guns, the first real signs of trench warfare. In December the decisive battle of the war’s opening months was fought. French and German forces had massed in Swabia to be thrown against the Austrian advance west. At Augsburg from December 5th to 8th a titanic battle was fought, with around 350,000 French and German forces battling over a quarter of a million Austrians. Lines of infantry on both sides were cut down by rifle, machine gun and artillery fire. The French cavalry, taking heavy losses, did manage to break through on the Austrian left and force the Hapsburgs to retreat. Augsburg had been held, but around the city lay sixty thousand dead. The Central Powers advance in southern Germany had however been checked. A week later in Stuttgart the German Confederation announced full political union under Frederick Augustus III of Saxobavaria. Across Europe millions were being called up as the apparatus of total war was put into action. On Christmas Eve 1899 British Foreign Secretary William Jones wrote “the lamps are going out all over Europe, we shall not see them lit again in our life-time”.

The European situation as of December 1899:

The Great War
Part II: Into the Maelstrom
(January 1900 – June 1900)

The world entered a new year and a new century. But there was little rejoicing across the globe, as instead of dreams of hope the world faced only a nightmare of war. The first six months of the Great War had seen the Central Powers march to victory across the continent. Half of Germany lay under Austro-Prussian control as the Entente scrambled to hold them back. In the Balkans Austria had taken Belgrade and was sweeping the Jugoslavs before them whilst in the east the Poles and Prussians had rebuffed the great Russian steamroller. Yet the Entente had had victories too, Spain was crumbling in the face of Franco-Aragonese forces whilst the Austrian drive in Bavaria had been halted at Augsburg. The next six months would see the clouds of war spread across the globe and man and machine spewed death and destruction on an unheard of scale.

The so-called “German Front” would see the first serious fighting of the 20th Century. The Austrians had been rebuffed in the bloody Battle of Augsburg and had failed to take the city. However throughout January Austrian reinforcements had been moving to the front. Another aspect of the von Steffan plan had been a detailed and prepared outline calling for mass mobilization amongst the Central Powers. This foresight was paying off as Poland, Prussia and Austria were all calling up tens of thousands of new soldiers, with officers and weapons ready for them. The Entente meanwhile were having to play catch-up. With an influx of new troops Berlin and Vienna outlined the new Blücher Offensive (named for the Prussian general who devised it). The operation called for 300,000 men to be hurdled at the centre point of the Entente lines where French and German armies were joined, near the town of Nordlingen, about half way between Augsburg and Wurzburg. The plan would be for an overwhelming concentration of Central Powers force in this small area to punch through the Entente lines and then drive west to take Stuttgart (the acting capital of Germany), before sweeping south cutting off all the Entente forces in that area. The Blücher Offensive was launched on January 30th 1900 and began with a powerful artillery barrage across a narrow frontline. The Austro-Prussian forces then drove forward and Entente resistance…collapsed. A few isolated hold outs fought fervently but in most places the outnumbered French or German forces were swept aside. The defeat at Augsburg had caused great loss of life to the Austrians, but it seems the damage done to the German forces was just as bad and their morale was cracking. And, unlike the Central Powers, it seemed the Entente had not managed to bring up enough reserves quickly enough. The attacking forces drove deeper and deeper into German territory. It soon became clear that taking Stuttgart was a risky prospect, it was well defended and the Central Powers supply lines were stretching. Despite von Blücher’s arguments to the contrary the drive was diverted southward aiming for the city of Ulm and then to the Swiss border, encircling near 150,000 Entente troops. Seeing the danger Prince Henry of France (who was in overall command of the Entente forces) began withdrawing his forces in the south to prevent them being surrounded. The withdrawal allowed Austrian forces to finally take Augsburg, a triumph that prompted bells to sound throughout the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Ulm fell in early March as Prussian forces drove south. It became a race as Entente forces attempted to make it out before the gap closed, pursued from the east by the advancing Austrians. Desperate to avoid a catastrophe Prince Henry threw his reserves (around 200,000 men) against the flank of the southward pushing Prussians. In a massive battle near Ulm from March 28th-30th the Entente forces achieved a significant and morale boosting victory. Known as the “Miracle of Ulm” the victory caused the Central Powers to break off their advance and withdraw eastward. The victory at Ulm prevented the mass encirclement of the Entente armies, something that likely would have ended the war then and there. As the Central Powers fell back to regroup the French and Germans pursued doggedly. The German troops especially were near fanatical in their pursuit, a fervent desire to liberate their homeland driving them forward. The Austrians and Prussians, led by Duke Charles Jordan von Rigel, fought a German army to a standstill near Landsberg in April. With both sides exhausted the front stabilised. Across the front the Central Powers and the Entente began to dig, in awaiting fresh troops and supplies.

The Blücher Offensive:

In the east the Russians, rebuffed by the Central Powers during their failed Autumn Offensive, were determined to take the pressure of France and Germany and enter the war proper. With the Polish Bastion line holding strong, the Russians sought to act elsewhere. Jugoslavia, Russia’s Slavic ally in the south, was reeling in the face of Austrian aggression. The Tsar decided to act to save his ally. A huge Russian army of half a million men was to march south, through the UKD, and link up with the Jugoslavs to dive out the Austrians and threaten the Hungarian border. In the United Kingdom of the Danube itself there had been much indecision on whether or not to enter the war. Some argued that it would be best to stay out of the conflict, others looked at Transylvania as a prize and called on the kingdom to support the Entente, and still a third group wary of Jugoslavia and looking to the events in Germany wanted to join the Central Powers. The Russians made this choice easy. The Russian ambassador in Bucharest handed the Danubian government a note from the Tsar, in it the choice facing the UKD was clear either they could join the Entente or not, but regardless five hundred thousand Russians would cross their border. On February 3rd the United Kingdom of the Danube declared war on the Central Powers. The Russian army swarmed southwards, being joined by Danubian forces. A few probes were launched against the heavily fortified and mountainous Hungarian border, but the main thrust was into Jugoslavia. The Austrians for their part were besieging Sofia when the Russians arrived. Advance forces of the Russian army arrived causing the Austrians to break off their siege and regroup. A string of battles throughout Bulgaria saw the combined Entente armies drive back the Austro-Hungarians, who received new reinforcements originally meant for the German front to shore up their resistance. There was good news for the Central Powers however. Concerned about the Russian advance and under intense British diplomatic pressure (including generous offers of funds), Greece, honouring their pact with Austria, joined the war, striking at the Entente’s flank. The Greek entry (supported by a small British detachment) slowed the Russians and their allies and by June the fighting in the Balkans was still in the balance.

Russian forces move en masse into Jugoslavia, February 1900:

Whereas the Italian Front remained in a stalemate of trenches and fortifications (with France and Austria prioritising the fighting elsewhere) the fighting in Spain continued. In April the Entente achieved a major triumph when they seized Madrid after a bloody siege. The Spanish government, now based in Seville, had managed to regroup most of their forces in the southwest and in Galicia. An Anglo-Portuguese army under British General Luke Johnston, numbering roughly 135,000, was moved over the border and defeated an Aragonese army near Salamanca in May. The Spanish meanwhile, launching their first major counter-offensive of the war, retook the city of Cartagena on the southeast coast. British, Portuguese (including Brasilian units) and Spanish troops amassed in southern and western Spain as the Entente dug in, looking to hold onto their gains. The planned arrival of further Brasilian forces to this front (known as the Iberian or Peninsular Campaign) did not transpire however as those units were needed back in South America. The Triple Alliance of New Granada, Ecuador and La Plata had decided to enter the war, noting Portugal and Britain’s pre-occupation with the fighting in Europe. Honouring their French alliances the three South American monarchies joined the Entente and declared war on Portugal and its allies Peru and Córdoba. Granadan and Ecuadorian forces swarmed south into the Peruvian Republic’s northern holdings whilst simultaneously New Granada and La Plata invaded Brasil from north and south. The initial attacks went well gaining land on all fronts. British Guiana was also invaded by New Granada and the Dutch. Peru managed to halt the advance of the Entente forces near Trujillo. The Granadan invasion of Brasil was also stalled, more by the Amazonian terrain than by Brasil. The La Platans however were making great strides in the south, Montevideo soon came under siege. In North America meanwhile the Dominions of Canada, Columbia and Indiana had all followed Britain’s lead and entered the war. Canadian troops began skirmishing with French forces in Quebec, but the outnumbered Canadians were unable to make any great strides. Instead they awaited reinforcements from Columbia and Indiana. New England, Louisiana and the Américan Republic all began mobilizing their forces as well. New England was not overjoyed about another war with French Canada, but prepared itself for conflict regardless in support of Britain whilst also beginning a programme for escorting its commercial marine. Louisiana, an ally of France and New Granada, began calling up its reserves but it too did not join the war, yet. In América the process was more difficult; the internal tensions and political deadlock in Mexico City had already resulted in much discontent amongst the public. Many who were called up refused to appear for service and anti-government riots took place in parts of California. Something not lost on América’s neighbours…

New Granadan cavalry in northern Peru, April 1900:

War spread to other continents as well. In Africa and the Middle East France marshaled a large army of French and Egyptian troops (around 70,000 men) and invaded British Syria aiming to overrun the small territory before Britain could use it as a base. Meanwhile an Anglo-Portuguese force was being assembled in central Africa to strike north into the French African Empire. Dutch South Africa and Portuguese Moçambique were soon embroiled in yet another border skirmish as Dutch forces simultaneously moved into Spanish Southwest Africa. The war really began to heat up in India. The Kingdom of Mysore, tasting imperial success for the first time against the Netherlands a few decades before, threw itself into the war with great energy, joining its traditional British ally. Mysorean forces crossed the border into French India whilst their respectable navy set out to do battle. It was here that the first major naval confrontation of the Great War took place. The Battle of the Gulf of Mannar (near Ceylon) saw an Anglo-Mysorean fleet commanded by British admiral Maxwell Watters defeat the French Indian navy and a Dutch contingent in a battle that lasted for twelve hours. The French Indian fleet was crippled and for the moment the Indian Ocean was in the hands of the Allies (as the war broadened from a simple European conflict the term ‘the Allies’ began to replace the Central Powers which referred to simply Prussia, Austria and Poland). It was not all good news however for Britain as under Russia pressure, Delhi announced a holy war against Britain and sent 150,000 men into British India, a move that for the first time in over a century truly threatened Britain’s presence in the sub-continent. Further east St. Petersburg sought to further tie up the British. Russia’s Asian protectorates Xinjiang and Mongolia as well as the Empire of China all were “encouraged” to enter the war. Imperial and Russian forces invaded the British allied Republic of China causing Korea and Japan to begin calling up their reservists. As the war became a global affair the French unleashed their secret weapon on the world in an attempt to cripple the Allied war effort. In June three dozen French submarines left port. Soon to be dubbed “Louis’ sharks” by the British press, this underwater fleet would wreck havoc on Allied Atlantic shipping; as the world prepared to enter its second year of war…

An artist's impression of the Battle of Mannar:

The Great War
Part III: Europe in Flames
(The European Theatre: July 1900 – December 1900)

“Mud, sweat and blood. That is all our lives have been reduced to now. The great advances of the earlier days have been replaced by this grinding monotony of trench and wire.” – From the diary of Karl Reinhardt, 14th Brandenburg Rifles Prussian Army. October 30th 1900.

“I’ve never seen so many men in one place, our own forces as well as several Portuguese divisions and a few from Britain. I talked with a man last night from British Australia. Who would have thought that a man from the other side of the world would have ended up fighting alongside me here in Spain? Tomorrow I hear we are going to retake Madrid. Long live Spain, long live the Republic!” – From the diary of Santiago Torres, a Spanish Cavalryman, November 3rd 1900.

In July General Luke Johnston, commander of the Allied armies in Spain, launched a general offensive across the peninsula. In all around 200,000 British, Portuguese and Spanish troops were involved in the attack. Allied artillery pounded the Franco-Aragonese positions, followed by Allied infantry and cavalry. The artillery barrage was unusually successful as Johnston had used hydrogen powered airships for reconnaissance to map the Entente lines, the first use of aircraft in war. The Allied counter-attack gradually drove ever onward deeper into Spain. Toledo fell in August. The city was finally taken by a brave assault led by men from the Scottish Highlander divisions. The famous Scottish military march “The Walls of Toledo” is derived from this action. The Entente forces managed to withdraw in good order and in the south were able to regroup and form a strong defensive line centred on Alicante, reinforced by French African units. In the north the Allies had a difficult time. The French (not consulting their allies in Barcelona) had sought to raise the Basque population, promising an independent Basque state after the war. Reinforced by volunteer Basque units the French were able to blunt the allied drive and halt their advance near Burgos. The fiercest fighting was in the centre as the Allies sought to liberate Madrid. In early November Spanish forces entered the suburbs of their capital, but were repulsed. An Anglo-Portuguese force broke through to the north of the city, as Spanish forces did likewise to the south. By year’s end Madrid was surrounded and under siege.

British soldiers advance on Madrid, November 1900:

In Italy it was the Entente that would be on the advance. The Austrian defensive line in Lombardy and Venetia had prevented a breakthrough by the French and Sardinians earlier in the year. This time however the Entente concentrated their forces and broke through. The Sardinians pushed through and reached the Adriatic by August. The Austrians were forced to withdraw along the front, lest their other forces get cut off. Venice fell to French forces in late September. An overzealous Sardinian force (joined by pro-Entente Italian volunteers) tried to advance too far and too fast and were checked by the reformed Austrians. Though there had been the possibility of a major breakthrough by the Entente it did not materialise. The French simply were fighting on too many fronts and were unable to send enough troops to Italy, with Germany and Spain the more important of the European areas. The Sardinians alone lacked the strength needed to launch a full offensive. The Austrian defenders in Italy (mainly Slavic troops who Vienna feared to use against the Jugoslavs and Russians) were also short on weapons and men; but were able to benefit from holding a defensive line. In more ways than one this clear de-prioritisation of the Italian front would be a continuing theme throughout the war. In the Italian Republic itself however the country remained divided on what course to take, both the Entente and the Allies were attempting to woo Italy into their camp. The government in Florence had begun calling up its reserves, yet Italy remained neutral. However in the New Year their hand would be forced.

In the Balkans the Russians continue to pour men into the fighting. The Austrians were driven back by the Russians and their Jugoslav allies. The Jugoslavian General Dušan Milosavljević led a drive westward which seemed destined to reach the Adriatic. The advance was stalled however by an Allied advance from the south. The Greeks, supported by British troops, began to move northward into Jugoslavia, preventing Milosavljević’s army from cutting them off from the Austrians. The Russians counter-attacked however and invaded northern Greece. The terrain of this country however favoured the defender and the advance slowed. Russia continued to move men into the Jugoslav Campaign (along with Danubian armies) however and the Allies simply could not prevent the slow but steady advance of the Slavic armies. In the Ukraine British intelligence revealed a large Russian army of near a quarter of a million men (the Russian 7th Army) being prepared to move to the front; a force which would place real pressure on the Allies when they moved. Along the Russo-Polish border the fighting continued. There was no major advances on either side (though the Prussian campaign in Livonia drove onward) and the Russians were content simply to harass the Polish and prevent them from relocating their forces to Germany or the Balkans.

Russian troops fighting in Serbia, September 1900:

The all-important German Front would remain locked in a stalemate throughout the second half of 1900. After the dramatic fighting in the Blucher Offensive and the following Franco-German counterattack the two sides, exhausted and battered, had begun digging in. By November of 1900 a line of trenches, wire, mines and fortifications stretched from the Swiss border to the Rhineland, straight through the heart of Germany. This is not to say that it was quiet. Thousands died on both sides as offensives were launched, only to be cut down by machine gun and artillery fire. Austria, Prussia, Germany and France were all mobilizing their entire nations to war, hundreds of thousands of men on both sides were being called up and starting in France (but soon in all) women were entering the factories to make-up for all the men being sent to the front. By the end of the year three million men were in the trenches of the German Front. The Allies did get a boost with the arrival of the British Expeditionary Force in December. With around 80,000 men the BEF was small in terms of manpower but it provided a morale benefit to the Austro-Prussian forces.

The Entente would see their greatest successes be at sea in this period. The submarines of the French navy, or “Louis’ sharks”, were wrecking havoc on Allied shipping in the north Atlantic. In November the French submarines surprised and sunk the British battlecruisers Victory and Tempest; a huge blow to the Royal Navy and a victory celebrated across France. After New England entered the war in November the French began harassing the North American coastline as well, from bases in French Canada and New Granada. The raiding of the shipping lanes began to affect the British economy (which was of course reliant on maritime commerce), though the expenses of war were biting hard at all the other combatants already. In November the Entente had a huge victory. Catching the British Mediterranean Fleet by surprise, a Franco-Aragonese-Sardinian naval force inflicted a crushing defeat on the Royal Navy near Sicily, forcing the remnants to withdraw to Cyprus. This victory was followed up by a French landing in Malta, which seized the strategic island in the heart of the Mediterranean.

On Christmas Eve British intelligence received news that the Russian 7th Army in Ukraine had moved. The Austrians braced themselves for its arrival. But it never came. The Poles were concerned it may be used to strike at the Bastion. No attack materialised. The British were dumbfounded, how could a quarter of a million men disappear? By the New Year there was still no sign of the 7th Army in the Balkans or in Poland. Where had they gone? In January they got their answer.

The Great War
Part IV: “In the footsteps of Alexander”
January 1901 – April 1901

In the first days of 1901 the Russian Army launched Operation Alexander. The Army of the Ukraine (750,000 men) would launch a two pronged invasion of Persia from the Caucasus and from Central Asia, simultaneously the Army of Turkestan (400,000) would move southeast joining with forces from the Delhi Sultanate and attacking British India. Persia was currently ruled by the Shah Mohammad, of the Qajar Dynasty. Mohammad’s Persia had been a focal point for the Great Game throughout the late 19th century and had benefited from exploiting the Anglo-Russian rivalry to advance his own country. Although far from the strength of the great powers, Persia had become a respectable force in the region. Wary of Russian expansion in Central Asia, Mohammad had eventually drifted into the British camp, and had signed an alliance with Britain in 1899. To the Russians this threat to their southern flank was a concern; the Tsar therefore had decided to eliminate it. Not only would driving the British out of Persia bring security to Russian Central Asia but it would provide a springboard for an invasion of India and give Russia a “warm water port” on the Indian Ocean. The Russians sought to depose Mohammad, and replace him with his pro-Russian brother Naser.

Operation Alexander was a success right from the start. The British had not anticipated such a move and the Persians were not prepared for the onslaught. The two Russian drives each enjoyed great advances. In the east they were able to seize all of Khorasan and began to move southward. In the west the cities of Tabriz and Rasht both fell in the first month of the campaign. Mohammad and his court soon fled the capital Tehran and re-established their government in Shiraz in the south. In the confusion of this period the Russians were able to take Tehran and install Naser as a puppet ruler. British troops had been dispatched and soon had joined with Persian forces in the south, stabilizing the situation somewhat, preventing the fall of Ispahan. The eastern drive however was more successful and continued to roll back the Anglo-Persian forces.

It was soon clear that Britain was stretched to its limits. Commitments in North America, the Atlantic, Germany, Iberia, Greece, India, East Asia, Africa and now Persia had exceeded even Britain’s capabilities. In March the British government decided to abandon its traditional small professional force and began the process of mobilizing a million-man army. Likewise London began calling on the Empire to provide more men to the fighting. Australian troops saw fierce fighting in Persia as well as in the Indian campaign in this period. An expeditionary force of men from the Dominions of Columbia and Indiana also was dispatched. In India this overstretch was apparent. The armies of Delhi had made limited success in the early months of the war, but now flush with Russian reinforcements launched a renewed drive, cutting of Bombay and placing it under siege. It was only control of the seas and the support of Mysore that enabled the city to hold out. Mysore itself was more focused on the conquest of French India in the southeast. France, after the naval defeat at the Battle of the Gulf of Mannar, was for all intents and purposes unable to reinforce its position on the subcontinent, let alone launch an offensive. However French forces fought an effective defensive campaign, which tied up thousands of British and Mysorean troops.

British Indian Army troops in central India, March 1901.

Along the northern front however things continued to go poorly for the Allies. The Entente forces continued to push onwards, seizing the city of Jabalpur in early April, though Bombay still held out. A Russian-backed uprising against British rule in Bengal was a major irritation for the British. Portugal, long established in India from its coastal enclaves, was able to send a small force to the subcontinent, which joining with the Columbian and Indianan troops was a much needed boost to the Allies. Back in Persia the Russian advance continued at a relentless pace. The British and Persians managed to hold on in the southwest, but in the east the Allies were collapsing fast. On April 28th 1901 the Russian army seized the city of Bandar Abbas on the south coast and Russian troops put their feet in the Indian Ocean. The Tsar had his warm water port at last.


The Great War
Part V: The War in Asia
June 1900 – June 1901

In June 1900 the Chinese Front of the Great War exploded into life when forces from the Empire of China, supported by elements from Russia, Xinjiang and Mongolia, invaded the Republic. The forces of the Entente achieved early victories against the Republicans. Using overwhelming numbers in the areas targeted for the assault the Entente were able to overwhelm the Republicans, who despite holding out in a few sectors were forced to withdraw along the entire front to prevent these areas being encircled. Eventually the advance slowed and the Entente began to besiege the important coastal city of Shanghai. Both the Republic and the Empire began the conscription of huge numbers of civilians and calling for increased support from their allies. Russia encouraged its protectorates of Mongolia and Xinjiang to send what they could, whilst the increasingly overstretched Britain was only able to offer token support to the Republican government in Guangzhou.

In the East Indies there was also serious fighting. The armies of Mysore launched a renewed offensive in Sumatra, striking from their base in the north of the island. The Dutch were gradually pushed back, but a combination of pulling in troops from the other islands and the difficult terrain of Sumatra itself forced the Mysorean advance to slow. The extra pressure of the struggle and the re-deployment of Dutch troops did however increase the strain on Dutch control elsewhere though, which was already wavering. To the north the British Burma Army had invaded French-allied Siam, aiming to knock this country out of the war and prevent France using it as a base in the region. Though the campaign was progressing smoothly the fighting in India was given top priority and the Siamese front was soon quiet as Britain focused on Delhi and Siam regrouped.

In China however the war continued unabated. The Republic was marshalling new forces in the south, armed and equipped with the latest British weaponry, hoping its existing forces in the north would be able to hold out long enough. This proved to be a false hope however. In late 1900 a combined Russian-Imperial force stormed Shanghai, a huge blow to Republican morale which was exploited by the Entente as they drove onwards. The fall of Shanghai however had an unexpected gain for the Allies. Increasingly concerned about the advance of Russia and its allies in East Asia, the Koreans and Japanese declared for the Allies and entered the war. The two Asian states (allied with each other and with Britain) had been preparing to join the war eventually but the fall of Shanghai accelerated their plans. The Koreans and Japanese had sorted out a plan of action and a division of territories in East Asia and in November they sprang into action. The Japanese invaded the Russian puppet Republic of Ezo on Hokkaido whist simultaneously invading Russian Sakhalin (the Korean half of the island being ceded to Japan as agreed). The Ezo government did not last long against the vastly superior Japanese forces and the country collapsed in January, once more unifying Japan. On the mainland two great Korean armies sprung into life. One moved west, invading the Empire of China. The Imperial forces were mostly concentrated in the south and the Koreans (once more) were able to drive deep into northern China, threatening Beijing itself. To the north the second Korean army invaded the Russian portion of Manchuria, eager to avenge their defeat to the Russians in the 1860s. Russian defenders fought well and withdrew in good order as they were capable enough to prevent the Koreans driving too far and too fast, but they lacked the numerical strength to counter-attack at this time. Both the Allies and the Entente now stepped up diplomatic pressure to woo Viet Nam into the war, but that country remained neutral.

Russian infantry in northern Manchuria:

The entrance of the Korean-Japanese alliance was a great relief for Britain. Handing over responsibility for the East Asian seas to the two nations, Britain was able to redirect the massively overstretched Royal Navy to the fighting around India and the Indies. The Royal Navy was able to support the Mysorean advance in Sumatra, resulting in the collapse of Dutch resistance on that island in a matter of months. In March a new nation joined the Allies. The situation in the Dutch East Indies went from bad to worse for the Netherlands with the fall of Sumatra. Confident in the impending Dutch defeat, rebellion broke out across Borneo. The Danes, acting from their base at Tuy Hòa in Viet Nam, had long been courting contacts in the East Indies and undermining Dutch rule. Acting on impulse and without direct orders from Copenhagen the Danish governor of Tuy Hòa and admiral of their Asian fleet, J. Claessen (the former explorer) dispatched a naval force to invade Borneo in co-operation with their friends on the ground. Dutch control of the island collapsed as the Danes swept in, backed by Britain. The government in Copenhagen was initially outraged but seeing the great success that they were achieving decided to act as if it was their plan all along and threw their support behind the Allies. Denmark officially declared war on the Entente on March 20th 1901.

In April the final resistance in French India also collapsed. Cut off and outgunned the French colonial troops had fought a brilliant and determined campaign, but eventually their supplies ran out and they were forced to surrender. The end of this front allowed Britain to redeploy forces to the northern Indian front. Delhi had the upper hand in the battle, which was now increasingly a war of attrition. Local Muslims in Delhi-occupied lands were put into positions of power and attacks on Christians were common. The Delhi Jihad did inspire great fanaticism in their supporters as well as in Muslims in British territory who conducted various risings and attacks. This Islamic wave however pushed other Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists to rally under the Union Jack. Mysore meanwhile moved its fleet to relieve the siege of Bombay as well as launch a surprise invasion of French Aden. The Dutch colony of Nieuw Zeeland decided it had had enough. With Dutch rule in the East Indies imploding the colonial government in Haarlem declared independence as a free republic, and approached the Allies for peace. The independence of the country was recognised by the Allies and its neutrality. A pro-Dutch rising in the southern island was put down by Zealanders and an expedition from British Australia. The Russians, concerned about the course of events, moved more men into Manchuria and China. The Koreans were surprised by the new Russian reinforcements and were gradually pushed back, whilst in China the Republican forces were still unable to completely stop the Entente’s advance. Far to the west however the Allied “Persian Pocket” was able to hold out against the Russians and troops from Australia and the British Dominions were moved in. Russia, now seriously beginning to feel the effect of fighting on so many fronts, was unable to devote enough men and material to crush it; in north India though Delhi still seemed to have the edge, despite the Mysorean relief of Bombay. Japan, victorious in Hokkaido and Sakhalin, dispatched a fleet to invade Formosa which was still under Dutch rule. The French were eager to attempt to re-address the course of events in East Asia. They knew that despite the collapse of the Dutch the war in Asia was still in the balance. Aware of the Japanese fleet heading to Formosa, France dispatched its Pacific Fleet based at Manila to intercept.

British Indian troops awaiting a Delhi Offensive in central India, May 1901:

The Great War
Part VI: The War in the Americas
June 1900 – June 1901

As conflict raged in East Asia and the Middle East, the fighting in the Americas increased in its intensity as the South and North American theatres of war erupted into life. In the South America the Entente (here of course represented by the monarchist powers of New Granada, Ecuador and La Plata) were on the offensive. In Peru the Entente continued their southern drive down the coast. The narrow nature of this area of conflict (hemmed in by the Andes and the Pacific) led to a form of trench warfare reminiscent of the fighting in Germany and Spain. In the early months of the war the New Granadan navy (of the non-European fleets only those of Japan, América, Mysore and New England could really rival it) had swept the Peruvian fleet aside and (supported by the small yet not totally insignificant Ecuadorian navy) blockaded the coastline of Peru. This not only meant that the Entente could target the Peruvian positions from the sea but supplies could be shipped to their advanced forces and threaten amphibious landings behind Peruvian lines forcing reserves to be stationed to prevent such. Things were to get worse for Peru as well. In early 1901 the Córdoban Republic, totally outmatched by La Plata, crumbled and sued for peace in March. La Plata was then able to redeploy its western forces (the main army of course fighting Brasil) to attack Peru from the south. Morale throughout Peru plummeted and the economy was on the point of collapse. Desertion and rioting soon became as great as enemies for Peru as the Entente. Many throughout the country began to take great interest in the radical ideals of the Collectivists…

New Granada was also enjoying success elsewhere. British Guiana had been conquered by Granadan-Dutch forces in January. With Peru seemingly on the point of collapse the government in Cartagena sought to capitalise on the events to the north and declared war on América, seeking to finally seize control of the disputed Panama region and reverse the losses of the American War (1859-1863), thus bringing the Américan Republic and its conflict into the Great War. Again using their naval edge the New Granadans launched a combined land and sea assault into Panama. The Américan navy however was no push over and it was able to disrupt the landings somewhat and engaged in a series of battles with their New Granadan counterparts. With New Granada now fighting in Peru and Panama and Brasil focused on the south the northern Brasilian front stayed quiet, helped of course by the very difficult terrain. In the south the important city of Montevideo had fallen to the La Platans who now pushed further north. A series of titanic clashes waged across the region as La Plata and Brasil poured men into the fight. Both countries had, like the Europeans, began mobilizing vast armies and entering a stage of what would later be described as “total war”. Brasil also received money and arms from Britain and the other half of their union, Portugal (though neither sent fighting men as both countries were already stretched across the other fronts). A huge battle was fought a few miles south of Sao Paulo with not far short of half a million men in total involved. Over three days the La Platans sought to break through Brasil’s defenses and each time they were repulsed. On the fourth day of battle (May 31st) the Brasilians counter-attacked and drove the La Platans back.

A scene of Brasilian artillery at the Battle of Sao Paulo:

The Commonwealth of New England had entered the war in November 1900, following a series of attacks on their shipping and a desire in Boston to finally end the threat of French Canada. Unfortunately for them the Quebec-New England border was one of the most fortified borders on the planet (rivaled only really by the Polish Bastion Line). A steady advance was launched by the New Englanders, looking to avoid the mass casualties occurring in Europe. The Quebecois for their part simply dug in and waited for them. In the west the British Dominions of Canada, Columbia and Indiana all sent men for an invasion of Quebec from the west. The advance went well at first but as more men and material were re-prioritized for the fighting in India the advance slowed, but did not stop. Diplomatic pressure now began mounting on the other North American powers to enter the war from their European allies. The Américan Republic, under British pressure, decided to use this opportunity to attack the currently neutral yet French-aligned Louisianan Empire (their historic foe). The government in Mexico City announced full mobilization and began switching to a war footing. The internal tension and dissension began to spill over as many reservists refused to answer the call for another “needless war”. “Jobs not Blood” was the rallying call of those that marched in protest in the capital. The biggest mistake arguably was the demand that América’s dependency Tejas mobilize its own forces. Tejas of course had a troubled history with América and many of its people had sympathies with Louisiana. When Tejas refused to support America and instead renounced its dependent status, Mexico City sought to use this chance to rally the people behind them and invaded Tejas. The Tejans did not take this lying down and fought tooth and nail. Louisiana, now ruled by the ambitious Emperor Joseph II, could not resist the Tejan appeal for aid and declared war on América. Once more Tejas would serve as the spark for conflict between New Orleans and Mexico City. The New Granadan invasion of Panama linked the two wars and Louisiana acted quickly moving troops into the western parts of New England to secure a more defensible position whilst its main army focused on the west. The outbreak of war with the old enemy did cause some of América’s internal issues to subside briefly but a series of reverses in the north and south saw this temporary goodwill evaporate. As Louisiana mobilized for a modern war, Californian separatists began meeting in secret whilst others began to look at more radical alternatives. In June King James of Carolina declared mobilization.

The Great War
Part VII: The European and African Theatres
January 1901 – June 1901

Madrid fell on February 3rd 1901. The Allied armies (comprising troops from Spain, Portugal, Britain and their various colonies/dominions) had encircled the city in November and placed it under siege. Eventually the cut off and worn down Franco-Aragonese troops in the city were forced to surrender. The liberation of the capital was a source of great pride for the Spanish and Madrid’s recapture did much to boost the morale of the Allies in the Peninsula. The Allied advance elsewhere continued. There was no great sweeping advance only a slow monotonous drive forward along the front. The British General Luke Johnston, in command of the Allied armies in Iberia, claimed he would “grind the Entente armies into dust”. Pioneering the use of airships in reconnaissance as well as taking great pains to support his infantry with artillery Johnston saw his forces move further and further east. In the north the French backed Basque resistance, utilising guerrilla warfare, continued to plague the Allied armies. Within the Basque movement itself the command structure was being infiltrated and influenced by many radicals adhering to Collectivist ideals. By the midpoint of 1901 the guerrillas had been united into the Basque Collectivist Alliance (BCA). The increasingly radical nature of the BCA however worried the French government and they began to distance themselves from the movement. Regardless however it was clear to many now that the fighting in the Iberian Peninsula was swinging in favour of the Allies.

The war would take on a further twist in early March. Republicans and Italian nationalists staged a revolution in Rome, aimed at disbanding the government of the Papal States and unification with Italy (it is important to note however that the vast majority of the rebels here were not anti-Papist and were willing to allow the continuation of Papal rule in the Vatican itself). When on March 19th the rebels had triumphed they formally petitioned the government in Florence for Rome to join Italy. France, the official protector of the Papal State and home to a large and notably outraged Catholic population, denounced the action and threatened Italy not to accept the unification. The government in Florence was divided, war with France and Rome or to back down? The Italian National Party (PNI) was still in power however and Prime Minister Alessandro Fortunato did not wish to pass this opportunity, not only to annex Rome but war with France and Sardinia may pave the way for the seizure of other rightfully Italian lands (they could deal with those pesky Austrians in Venetia later..). On March 24th Italy announced the absorption of Rome and the surrounding lands into the republic and, for good measure, declared war on the Entente. The Italian entry was a blow to the Entente who were forced to withdraw from parts of Venetia to avoid being totally outflanked, though not Venice itself. The opening Italian advance into Piedmont was a disaster however (the Italians had much to learn about modern war), but the Italians were soon receiving aid and assistance from both Britain and Austria. Italians too were flocking to the standard to see their country unified.

In the east there were definite signs now that the Russians were seriously overstretched. The recent explosion of fighting in Persia, India and China (made worse by the Korean and Japanese intervention) was draining Russian resources. Domestically the Russian economy was coming under serious strain and the continued drafting of men into the war effort was causing cracks at home. The government in St. Petersburg was growing ever so slightly concerned. In the Balkans the Russian/Slavic advance had been all but halted. The Austrians in the north and the Anglo-Greek forces in the south were proving capable of holding the Entente at bay, though any hopes of driving the Slavs back seemed distant. The Russians were having more success to the north however. A counter-offensive in the Baltic stunned the Prussians whose cautious Livonian advance was now being rolled back. The great Polish Bastion was also starting to crack; the gradual but sustained Russian pressure was making a few small, but notable, breakthroughs.

Prussian Forces withdrawing in the face of the Russian advance, near Riga May 1901


In the German Front the Allied armies of Austria-Hungary and Prussia launched a renewed offensive near Wurzburg. The Entente were pushed back, but at a terrible cost in life and material. The trench-warfare and constant artillery and sniper fire was taking a great toll in the morale of men on both sides. Learning from the events in Spain, the Allies here were making great use of the reconnaissance airships, though the French and Germans were catching up. Like Russia however both Prussia and Austria were facing economic woe at home as the war ground on, only the financial aid and subsidies of Britain were staving off financial ruin. The Danish entry into the war provided a great boost to the Allies however. Danish forces began arriving on the German front to bolster the Allied contingents. At sea the Danes joined the British in harassing the coasts of France and the Netherlands. Though the Entente had smashed the Royal Navy in the Mediterranean, Britain still had the edge in the Channel and the North Sea, an advantage compounded by the addition of the respectable Danish fleet. The French and Dutch were now considering a do-or-die battle for control of the sea. The Russian Baltic Fleet meanwhile was being fenced in by the Anglo-Danish-Prussian presence and was playing virtually no role in the fighting. The greatest concern for the Allies at this time though was the rising tide of Brandtist protests (some waving the black banners of the Collectivists) in the Rhineland calling on Dortmund to aid their “German brothers in the struggle against the invaders”. For now however the F.R.R remained neutral, though even their economy was feeling the burden of a world at war.

In Africa the fighting was fierce, though the numbers in men and material committed by both sides here was minimal. In South Africa the British had joined with the Portuguese and the Boer Republics in an invasion of Dutch South Afrika. The Dutch resistance was strong at first but soon began to collapse. By the end of June the outmanned and outgunned Dutch were overwhelmed by the Allied forces from without and Boer sympathisers from within. On June 29th the independent Republic of South Africa was declared backed by Britain and Portugal. The Dutch overseas empire was rapidly collapsing. In the north the fighting was going the Entente’s way however. France and their allies had invaded Italian Libya as well as an invasion of British Palestine; both campaigns were showing signs of success. Elsewhere fierce fighting between the French puppet of Aethiopia and Mysorean East Africa was a virtual stalemate while the French moved against the Allies in West Africa. The big question in June of 1901 for both Europe and Africa was what, if anything, would the Turks do?

A map showing the world situation as of July 1901.


The Great War
Part VIII: The World at War
July 1901 – December 1901

The Américan Republic was in trouble. It’s overzealous and perhaps rash decision to join the Great War had not paid off. Tejas, angry at the demand to mobilize, had thrown off the control of Mexico City and, supported by the Louisianan Empire, driven the Américans back. All along the Rio Grande front the Louisianan-Tejan forces were on the advance. Internal division and rivalry between various Américan commanders plagued their war effort. The decades of neglect of the Américan economy and of its lower classes was coming back to haunt the Republic as it totally failed to match the productive capability of the smaller and less populous Empire. As New Granada also crept up the Panamanian Isthmus the rioting and anti-war protests in Mexico City and other major cities grew increasingly worse. In November, buoyed by the advancing Louisianan armies, Californian separatists seized control of San Francisco and other cities, declaring an independent Californian Republic. It of course wasn’t this easy. By the end of the year California had dissolved into a four-way conflict between Louisianan forces, Américan loyalists, Californian republicans and the splinter Collectivists.

If the Entente were on the advance in Central America, the fighting in the north seemed to be going the way of the Allies. Surrounded, outmanned and outgunned French Canada began to crack in the face of the advances from west, south and north. New Englander armies finally broke through the border forts and soon Montreal was under siege. Aiming to disrupt communications and supplies between Montreal and Quebec itself, New England began dispatching airships armed with small bomb loads to target railways and troops; the first use of aerial warfare in North America. The fighting in the west along the Mississippi River over the province of Illinois had slowed. The Imperials had seized land, but with the focus point in América, they had dug in along the Illinois River. The mobilization of the Kingdom of Carolina had worried the Empire, who thought the Carolinans might invade. Instead the government in Charleston had decided to seize this opportunity to regain lost lands to the north. They invaded North Carolina in October. North Carolina resisted well but was driven back. The Commonwealth of Virginia however honoured their pact with their southern allies and sent aid to North Carolina. This small sideshow of a war would end 1901 in stalemate.

In South America also the war dragged on. The Republic of Peru was now in a state of near collapse. The Entente was on the advance in the north and in the south. The fact that the seas in this region were totally Entente controlled contributed to the domestic economic difficulties. It was the effectively absent economy and the disruption of the food supply as much as the invading armies that contributed to the Peruvian Revolution of November 23rd 1901. Collectivists backed by the mutinied garrison seized control of the capital La Paz and arrested the government, killing those that “resisted”. The wavering Peruvian armies on the front imploded. Desertion, already a problem, became endemic. Soldiers turned on their officers. Those with Collectivist sympathies battled those with Republican. The country unraveled overnight. On December 1st, after eradicating the remaining loyalist forces, the government of the tenuous Collectivist State of Peru asked for an armistice, which was accepted by the Entente powers. The fighting did not end as the invaders found themselves sucked into a civil war in Peru; where many soldiers found themselves exposed to the ideals of Collectivism. The collapse of Peru shocked the Allies. British, Australian and Columbian troops were sent to aid Brasil whereas a combined British/Dominion fleet was sent to clear out the Entente navies in the South Pacific. Meanwhile further east the Brasilians were on the counter-offensive. Despite fierce fighting and spirited resistance the La Platan forces were being pushed back; though the arrival of troops from Peru did help somewhat.

The Flag of the Collectivist State of Peru:


It has the symbols adopted by the Peruvian Collectivists that of the sickle (representing the workers) and the fist (representing the fight for freedom or the spirit of the revolution depending on who you ask) on a field dominated by the traditional Collectivist black (the colour used worldwide) with the traditional white and gold of Peru at the bottom. Signalling Collectivism rising from the old regime.

In Africa the Italian colony of Libya was overrun by the French who also had succeeded in crushing the remaining British resistance in Palestine. Diplomacy would succeed where cannon had failed however for Britain. After generous promises of control over Arabia, Egypt and the Caucasus, London had finally convinced their old ally the Sultanate of Turkey to enter the war. Attacking with speed and vigor the Turks smashed into the battle weary French in Palestine hurling them backwards. The French were shocked and were driven back. The Turkish Fleet (a respectable force in its own right) joined with the remnants of the British Mediterranean Fleet in Cyprus, once more threatening Entente control over the Mediterranean. Turkish troops also moved into Persia, linking up with the Allies there. Elsewhere the Allied armies were moving against French African territories from the south and west. The terrain combined with the ferocity and skill of the French African Army meant that the Allied advances were on the whole rather unsuccessful. Mysorean troops in Eastern Africa however were on the attack.

In India itself the Russo-Delhi armies were exhausted and were digging in. The British (backed up by forces from Australia, Portugal and the Dominions) and Mysoreans were content to remain on the defensive for the time being. They began mustering their forces behind the lines whilst they gathered supplies for a counter-offensive. Delhi did manage to achieve a breakthrough in the north however and moved into northern Bengal. On the Chinese front the Republicans were fighting a gradual withdrawal as they sought to hold back the Russian and Imperial armies. The fighting in China was some of the most devastating of the entire war causing huge civilian losses. The expected naval battle for control of the Asian theatre occurred near Okinawa. The Battle of Okinawa saw the Japanese (supported by a few of the larger Korean battlecruisers) defeat the French Pacific Fleet which was forced to withdraw to Manila. With control of the seas the Japanese were able to not only invade and occupy Dutch Formosa, but were able to support not only the Republican Chinese with reinforcements but threaten the Russian Far East with invasion. The Koreans meanwhile continued their drives in the north, though they suffered a serious reverse against the Russians in the winter and mountains, halting their advance dead. What was left of the Dutch East Indies was occupied by the Allied powers.

The Japanese Navy en route to the Battle of Okinawa:

The big success for the Entente in the latter half of 1901 came with the breaching of the Bastion Line in Poland. After holding out for over two years the Polish defences in the east of the country finally splintered. Russian forces broke through in a few key areas. The Poles were forced to withdraw, along with the Prussian Army of East Prussia. The fighting between Poles and Russia was fanatical. The two armies clashed without mercy and with a zeal not seen anywhere else. Though the Russians advance the cost to their forces was massive. The Poles themselves took over 100,000 casualties (including captured) in less than three months. The Russian Baltic Fleet however could not assist the advance, bottled in by the Allies. The Danes meanwhile began considering a move against Finland, and began talks with Britain on the subject. The Turkish entry into the war was expected to throw the Russian position in the Balkans into chaos. In reality the Turkish drive here (second priority to the fighting in the Middle East) was repulsed and the Balkan campaign remained in stalemate. The British and their allies here began considering a change of strategy. In Italy the mutual suspicion between the Italian and Austro-Hungarian armies prevented them from acting effectively in concert, though Venice was retaken by the Austrians in December. Aragon however was clearly heading towards defeat. Though the BCA continued its Collectivist inspired guerilla war in the north the Franco-Aragonese armies wee being pushed further and further back by the Allies. Valencia fell in late November and Bourbon rule in Barcelona was beginning to crack. On the critical German front the fighting remained brutal and intense, the Allied superiority in men and material slowly beginning to tell. Whispers and muddled reports began reaching Allied command of what appeared to be a gas attack against Prussian forces on the frontline. It seemed the Entente was getting desperate. Perhaps a new tactic was in order? Europe as a whole was facing economic crisis and rationing as the sheer scale and demands of the fighting reached unheard of levels. Meanwhile news of the Peruvian and Californian Revolutions filtered across the continent, and the Collectivists and other radicals were emboldened.

The Sickle and Fist:


A lot has been said about Collectivism in the past few updates and it is beginning to play an increasingly important role in the world. In addition in the post-war world (a period sometimes referred to as the Age of Ideology) Collectivism, as with other soon to emerge political and economic theories and ideologies, will take on even greater significance. Though I have talked in the past about Collectivism, its arguments and its history, I think it is worth now taking a moment to talk in detail about what the movement actually is about. I may do this for other ideologies later on but for now I will focus on Collectivism. I will do this in three parts first I will discuss in brief the history and current influence of Collectivism, secondly I will lay out its core tenants and aims and finally I will do a side by side comparison highlighting the similarities and differences between Collectivism and OTL Communism/Socialism (in simple terms, let’s not get drawn into the Marxist vs Leninist etc. debate now).

Collectivism has its roots in the Age of Revolutions (c.1790-1820). It was in this period as we saw that republicanism, liberalism and the early signs of nationalism developed alongside the struggles for liberation in Louisiana, América, Spain and elsewhere. Drawing on the developments of this period many writers and thinkers began to draft and create new interpretations on politics, the state and economics. The earliest version of what would become Collectivism is Salazarism. I have talked about this before but it is worth repeating it again here so I will quote the section I wrote before,
“The Peruvian politician and writer Ignacio Salazar would write a series of essays (together known as The Worker’s Pamphlets) in which he argued for a new form of state that was classless and placed all industry into the hands of worker’s collectives aimed at forming an egalitarian republic. Salazar’s writings would become popular amongst like-minded individuals throughout Peru and elsewhere. The Worker’s Pamphlets would launch Salazarism as political philosophy part of the larger ideology that became known as Collectivism.”
The Worker’s Pamphlets (1877) is, for all intents and purposes, the first Collectivist manifesto. Salazarism embodies the main ideas of “modern” Collectivism and it is from this Peruvian work that the ideology would develop. Two other key moments are worth mentioning in regards to the development of the ideology. First is the emergence of what is known as “Solidarism”. Solidarism was an offshoot of Salazarism articulated by the Rhinelander writers Paul Schultz and Thomas Muller. Solidarism can be seen really as an analogue to OTL Socialism, in that it is chiefly an economic theory aimed at organising labour and alludes to many things we would consider to be representative of a modern welfare state. Solidarism became popular throughout the more industrial and urban countries amongst the working classes, chiefly in the F.R.R, Britain, parts of northern and eastern France, New England and to a lesser extent in Prussia and Denmark. Solidarism never achieved a real global following and its adherents tended to look to advance their cause within the established political system (even in the monarchies) rather than taking a more revolutionary approach. The other key point in Collectivism’s development was the Monterrey Forum of 1888. The city of Monterrey in the Américan Republic played host to a meeting in 1888 of all the various intellectuals and key leaders involved somehow with the emerging ideals of Collectivism. In this Forum (which lasted five months) the delegates sought to set out their core arguments, their beliefs and draft a manifesto uniting them in their work to further the reforms they sought. The result of the Monterrey Forum in effect saw the formalization of Collectivism in América (this is of course why this branch of thought would later be dubbed Monterrist Collectivism) and not only served to lay out the new published ideology for other Collectivists worldwide but to lay the foundations of the modern Collectivist movement in the Américan Republic. Though the Américan Collectivist movement was arguably the largest and most organized at the time other key groups existed in South America (concentrated in Peru), parts of Russia, France, Iberia (seen embodied in the Basque resistance), areas of Britain and central Europe and really anywhere that organized labour, exploitation and resentment existed.

So that is a broad idea of how Collectivism developed now it’s time to discuss what exactly is Collectivism? Like OTL Communism, Collectivism is more of an umbrella term for a variety of related, but distinct, ideologies (one of which being the above discussed Monterrist branch). However it can be reduced down to four key core arguments that are prevalent across the spectrum:

  1. Class: One of the central pillars of Collectivism is the arguments over class. Collectivists see states as comprised of a class system, which is defined by the top exploiting the bottom. They cite feudalism (with its strict caste order) as the precursor to the oppressive division of class common in the modern states. The principal goal then of Collectivism is to destroy the class system and create an egalitarian state.
  2. Labour Organisation: This really stems from the above argument. In order to overturn the upper class’ control over the state, the lower classes must be organized and united. Labour unions are a key focal point of this plan (an inheritance from Solidarism) and Collectivists seek to win the support of the working classes and develop a formal and politicized labour force. Doing this will not only help prevent the continued exploitation of the workers but will allow for a solid base for seeking to create a new system.
  3. Worker’s Collectives: Due to the above principles the focus of the Collectivist economic plan is the formation of worker’s collectives (hence where the ideology gets its name). These collectives would then be in charge of all key industries (including agriculture) to better facilitate production and distribution to prevent the exploitation of the poor, which they accuse of being endemic under the current systems.
  4. Local Autonomy, National Centralization: Not so much as an ideological belief but a simple system of administration. Collectivists argue for a state organized along a general argument of autonomy at a local level whilst a strong central government. The worker’s collectives administer at a local/regional level but they follow instructions and guidelines set by the central government. The central government in turn is all powerful enabling it to set the required codes and decisions to ensure nationwide equality and maximization of goods.
These four points are at the heart of the Collectivist movement worldwide and are prevalent in all its various form and guises. Other tenants that are more varied include restrictions on private property, hostility to independent businesses, wide ranging differences on the levels of democratic participation and the militancy of the movements.

Finally to give a clear idea of how Collectivism compares to OTL Communism I will briefly discuss the three greatest similarities and four chief differences between the two ideologies. The chief similarities are:

  1. Class Struggle: Both Collectivism and Communism are focused primarily on the issue of class and the current exploitive nature of the established systems. Both call for the overhaul of caste society and the creation of a more egalitarian society.
  2. Collectivization of Production: They both argue for state control of the economy and an administrative/bureaucratic distribution of production, compounded with hostility to the free-market capitalist systems.
  3. A Strong State: A strong centralized state is not only a belief but really a requirement for the effective running of a Collectivist or a Communist state.
The four main differences are as follows:

  1. Collectivism in one country: This in my mind is the greatest and most important difference between the two. Whereas Communism (again broadly speaking) called for an international revolution and a worldwide worker’s movement (hell the USSR’s anthem for a time was the Internationale), Collectivism does not. Collectivism is above all a national movement. It has many roots and ties with the development of nationalism and thus though Collectivists in Peru and Germany may co-operate and see each other as friends there is a distinct sense of Collectivists in Peru working for Peru and in a Peruvian manner.
  2. History of Class Struggle: Whereas Marxism seeks to see history as the history of class struggle, Collectivists do not. They see class repression as having roots in history but see the new struggle as a distinct stage in human history not part of an eternal conflict.
  3. Religion: Communism, in most its forms, is an atheist ideology denouncing religion and God. Collectivist has no relation whatsoever to religion. It is possible to be Christian and Collectivist, Muslim and Collectivist or Agnostic or Atheist and Collectivist.
  4. Black vs. Red: An aesthetic difference only. Collectivists tend to utilize black as their primary colour rather than the red of Communism. Various peoples had various reasons for choosing black but it is now the recognized colour of the movement. Also as mentioned in regards to Peru the fist and the sickle is a more common (though by no means universal) symbol of Collectivism rather than our well known hammer and sickle.
Collectivism and Communism have many differences across the board, most fairly subtle. Broadly speaking though I have sought to articulate the three most obvious/important similarities and differences to give you a better idea of what exactly Collectivism is. Like I said I may do similar pieces for other ideologies in the future (though likely not as detailed).

Whirlwinds of danger are racing around us,
Overwhelming forces of repression prevail,
Still in the fight see advancing before us,
Black flags of liberty that yet shall prevail!

The Great War
Part IX: Tilting the Balance
January 1902 – June 1902

The fighting in California continued unabated. América had lost control over large portions of this region by early 1902. In the northwest the Californian separatists fighting for an independent republic were centralizing their control from the city of Sacramento. This faction was receiving support from Britain and its Dominion of Columbia, who seeing América had lost control over this region wanted to prevent the Collectivists . Elsewhere Collectivists were linking up with sympathizers and labour unions, and were driving southward. Américan military units tried to stop them, but soon more soldiers were deserting to join the Collectivists or simply throwing down their guns and walking home. By June the northern Américan front had collapsed into anarchy. The Tejans and Louisianans were now fighting Collectivists more often than the loyalist government troops. Meanwhile Collectivist sympathizers were spreading throughout the Louisianan army and the Empire itself. On June 30th 1902 fighting erupted in the Américan capital, Mexico City, the details and outcomes however were not immediately clear to the outside world.

In February the city of Montreal fell in French Canada. The Quebecois were being driven back by New Englander, British, Canadian and others across all fronts. It was clear the colony could not hold out much longer. In the west New England launched a new offensive aimed at driving the Louisianans out of Illinois, the move was successful and the Imperial forces were soon fighting on their own soil once again. A renewed invasion out of the Dominion of Indiana in the north caught the Louisianans by surprise and the native troops drove southward. The Carolinan War in the southeast of the continent continued to wage. The war had devolved into one of trench warfare and stagnation. The North Carolinan-Virginian armies had held the invaders and were slowly grinding them down. In the Kingdom of Carolina itself the domestic tensions continued to grow, the disenfranchised and downtrodden black population began to grow restless and Collectivists were seeking to turn this to their advantage.

In South America meanwhile the situation in Peru had stabilized somewhat. The government in La Paz had secured the country and the newly unified and inspired armies of the Collectivist State of Peru were on the counter-offensive. The over-zealous armies of the Entente had pursued too quickly as the Peruvians had fled, consequently lead elements of their forces were wiped out. Suddenly, inspired by the events in Peru, Collectivists rose up in Ecuador. With the country virtually devoid of soldiers (all of whom were on the front further south) and economic problems at home the Collectivists felt confident enough to seize control of the nation. The country plunged into civil war as loyalists battled the Collectivists. The Ecuadorian army imploded as the two factions tore at one another. By the midpoint of 1902 the entire Andean front was a chaotic confusing mess. In the east the Brasilians pushed on relentlessly, they had driven the La Platans out of Brasil entirely by May and, with the help of Portuguese forces from Africa, invaded La Plata itself in June.

In Africa young Prince Henri (second son of the king of France) was in overall commanded, acting out of Tunis. The French, and their allies, were holding all across the Saharan frontline and had even driven back the Allied invasion of southern Sudan. The task of holding off the forces of Britain, Portugal, Mysore, Spain and others was taking its toll however and there was little chance of ultimate victory. In the Middle East however the Anglo-Turkish forces had taken Jerusalem and were toppling French indirect control over the Arabian Peninsula. Flushed with Turkish troops the Allies continued their efforts to drive the Russians out of Persia. British agents were at work further east, stirring up the Pashtun minority who were wrecking havoc on Russian supply lines in the border regions.

British and Persian troops in Persia, May 1902:

The great Allied counter-offensive in India began in March 1902. Forces from Britain, its empire, the Dominions of Canada and Columbia, Australia, Portugal, Mysore, Orissa, Spain and Nepal began a massive attack against the Russo-Delhi armies. The sheer size and scale of the operation stunned the Entente forces, which were soon on the retreat. Anti-Delhi citizens, angered at the fanatical Islam of the invaders, rose up and compounded the difficulties for Delhi. The Republican Chinese also began to see the fighting swing their way. The superior arms of their forces enabled them to drive back their Imperial cousins, who were under threat from the Koreans. For their part the Koreans had Beijing under siege and had resumed their offensive against the Russians. Japan, having secured Formosa, launched two new offensives. One in the north see them land a small force in the Russian Far East whilst a major campaign was enacted to invade and conquer the Philippines. Seeing the tide begin to turn the formerly neutral Viet Nam entered the war on the Allied side invading the French-backed Siam.

In April of 1902 the Allies launched Operation Neptune. A combined Anglo-Turkish-Greek naval force crushed the Russian Black Sea fleet before landing an amphibious force of around 75,000 men behind Russian lines neat the city of Konstanza in the UKD. This landing threatened the major Russian supply bases and was a major concern behind their lines. After securing the beachhead the second phase was launched as more Allied forces were landed and broke out, simultaneously an Austrian advance (comprising the last of their reserves) drove out of Transylvania aiming to link with the landing. The Russians, who had around 2 million men in Jugoslavia, were now faced with the possibility of being cut off. The Russians now began to withdraw some forces east to keep the gap open as Greeks, British, Turkish and Austrian forces pushed from the south and West. The Russian drive into Poland slowed then halted. Fanatical Polish and Prussian resistance had stalled their advance after months of fierce fighting. Denmark began landing forces in Livonia to outflank the Russians. With their forces in Poland halted, on the retreat in Persia, East Asia and India and with what was looking like a debacle in the Balkans the Russian state began to crack. Fearing a collapse akin to Peru the new Russian Tsar Peter VI announced a series of measures centralizing and expanding his authority at the expense of the nobility, declared emergency laws and began drafting more men into the army. These moves did not go down well with many in the Russian nobility or society at large, further more the conscription of more men pushed the economy nearer to collapse.

Allied forces during Operation Neptune:

On April 9th 1902 Barcelona fell to the Allies. Aragon surrendered the day after. A last do or die battle in the Mediterranean never materialized. The Aragonese navy, fearing such a clash would see them all dead, mutinied and refused to fight. The French rushed in more men to shore up their defenses along the Pyrenees as the Iberian front unraveled. In Italy the Kingdom of Sardinia also began to waver. The islands of Sicily and Sardinia had both by this time been invaded by Italy. In Germany both sides began to make more liberal use of gas warfare causing horrific loss of life. Discontent, unease and sickness began to spread from elements of the French and German militaries back to their domestic home fronts as rioting broke out in Paris and Stuttgart (both quickly suppressed). The French did achieve a series of tactical successes in Germany however. The French stunned the Allies by unleashing their new airforce, filled with newly developed heavier than air aircraft. These new planes sent Allied airships toppling from the skies and strafed and harassed Allied ground troops and supply lines. The passing of control of the air to France was a blow to the Allied armies and seemed to buy the Entente more time. From Canada to the Orient however the writing seemed to be on the wall.


The Great War
Part X: The Balance Breaks
July 1902 – December 1902

The last few months of 1902 saw the total collapse of the Américan Republic. The coup in Mexico City was indeed the work of Collectivists. Joining with a mutinying garrison, the golpists (the OTL word here would be ‘putschists’ from the German word putsch meaning coup. However ITTL due to the prevalence of such events in the Spanish speaking world the term ‘golpists’ from the Spanish phase ‘golpe de estado’ meaning coup is prevalent amongst English speakers) seized power after a prolonged street fight against loyalists. Most of the Américan government was killed or captured, those that fled however set up a regime in Veracruz. This event however of course saw América transition from a state of chaos to one of civil war. The Californian separatists battled the Collectivists and the loyalists, the Collectivists battled loyalists across the country and the Tejan/Louisianan forces fought everyone. Things went from bad to worse for the region when Collectivists tried a similar tactic in Louisiana. The Empire however, though far from blossoming, was too stable and loyalty to the Emperor was too high. The coup failed. Other Collectivists did rise up in parts of the country however. Though these forces never truly threatened the Imperial regime, they were an unnecessary complication.

Collectivists find and eliminate "enemies of the people" during the civil war in América:

Elsewhere in North America the conflict continued. The city of Quebec, surrounded and cut off by the New Englander and Canadian navies, surrendered to the Allied armies. This combined with the fall of Louisbourg signaled the end of resistance in French Canada. This allowed New England to redistribute its forces to its western front, thus enabling a renewed offensive against the Louisianans. The collapse of América however did allow the Empire to refocus its forces here, as well as hunting down those damn Collectivists. The New Englanders did continue to advance however, as did the Indianan and Columbian forces in the north and northwest. In the Carolinan War, the Kingdom of Carolina, latest incarnation in the tragic story of this region, was breaking. The country was beset by Collectivist and black insurrection, specifically in northern Florida and Georgia. In the north meanwhile, with more troops fighting domestic rebellion, and with Virginia and North Carolina receiving economic aid from New England, the battle was going increasingly against them. In December the fighting entered the Kingdom itself.

In South America, Brasil continued its drive southward. The end of the Iberian Campaign did allow Portugal to begin sending more troops and ships to assist the effort. The implosion of Peru however did allow La Plata to refocus its forces here, allowing them to fight a spirited fighting withdrawal. The government in Buenos Aires was now however beginning to favour negotiation with the Allies. The Andean front meanwhile was a mess. Ecuador was being torn apart as Collectivists, loyalists, republicans and separatists turned on each other. Peru, now united under the Collectivist regime, drove northward to link up with its ideological comrades. New Granada decided enough was enough, and terrified of a Collectivist uprising at home, began to withdraw its troops from the quagmire. Instead they occupied the northern third of Ecuador as a buffer, whilst cementing their rule in Panama and the surrounding areas. New Granada was content to sit and hold what it had and began peace overtures to the Allies.

The French were eventually pushed out of the Holy Land by August. The Anglo-Turkish forces then invaded Egypt itself. The French were forced to withdraw from the Sinai but were able to hold along the Canal. Any chance of a counter-offensive was not on the cards however. Prince Henri in Tunis ordered a quick occupation of Aragonese Algiers to prevent it falling into Allied hands. The Spanish and Portuguese moved in to counter this. The Aragonese garrison split some backing their Iberian brothers, some the French, others just slipped away. A renewed British invasion of Sudan was launched in October whilst the remnants of France’s East African empire were seized by Mysore. In Persia and India the Allies also were on the advance. The Russians were facing huge issues elsewhere and were withdrawing their forces while Delhi was being simply overwhelmed by the combined Allied force. To make things worse the Pashtuns, backed by British agents, were in open rebellion in both Russia and the Sultanate. Further east the Koreans finally seized Beijing. This not only was a huge blow to the Imperial cause but marked the extent of the Korean advance in the war. The country had pushed itself to its limits and now dug in. Internal issues with the predominately non-Korean populace in occupied Manchuria meant that the powers that be decided to hold what they had and not put further stress on the nation. The Republican Chinese were on the advance however as the Empire crumbled and the Russians withdrew. By the end of the year the fighting was now solely within Imperial territory. Japan meanwhile finished off the Philippines, and Viet Nam, Britain and Portugal smashed Siam.

British Troops in the Sudan, September 1902:

The biggest event perhaps of the period was the closing of the Balkan gap. British and Austrian forces linked up in the U.K.D. The Russians tried to breakthrough but failed. The Allies then achieved a diplomatic coup. Promising not to punish the UKD too harshly and offering post-war financial help the Allies convinced the UKD to make peace, and refuse Russian access through the country. The Allies secured the country, now with the Danubian army retiring. The Russians now had over one and a half million men trapped and surrounded in Jugoslavia. Fighting raged over the last few months of the year but the Russians simply could not break out. Despite orders to fight on from St. Petersburg, Alexi Ivanovic, commander of the Russian army in the Balkans, surrendered to the Allies after promises of good treatment for his men. The surrender was the largest catastrophe in modern Russian history. The event sent shock-waves throughout the Russian government, with the increasingly paranoid Tsar assuming more and more dictatorial powers. On top of this the economic and financial strain in Russia, effectively fighting alone now from Poland to the Pacific, worsened. Rumors of famine began to spread. The Allies seized on this. A joint Prusso-Polish-Danish counter-offensive was launched in September hurling back the disillusioned Russians and invading the Empire itself across a broad front. Danish agents were also at work stirring up trouble in Finland and Livonia.

Things were going poorly for France too. Allied armies were now slowly but surely moving across the Pyrenees, invading France itself. Sardinia collapsed with the fall of Turin leaving France’s southeastern flank exposed. The Austro-Italian tensions however grew worse (there were even cases of skirmishing between the armies) and the Allied forces were in no position to invade France from Italy. In the skies above the German front French planes and airships battled their Allied counterparts in a series of dynamic clashes in the skies. It was on the ground however that the battle was being decided. The Entente were being pushed further and further back. When the French High Command gave orders for a new counter-offensive, mutinies erupted throughout the French, and later German, forces. The domestic situation in France was deteriorating rapidly with severe rationing in place across the country.The rats began to desert the sinking ship. The Dutch, their overseas empire in ruins and their economy non-existent, surrendered in November. Trier, its local government eager to avoid more pain and blood, renounced their union with Germany, and petitioned the Rhineland Republic for annexation. Dortmund reacted quickly, moving troops into Trier and clashing with German forces and German loyalists. The Entente was now on the verge of total collapse.

The Great War
Part XI: The Fall of Dynasties
January 1903 – September 1903

Facing a total collapse the remnant Américan government in Veracruz came to the conclusion that they could not fight the collectivists at the same time as all their other enemies. After approaching the Entente, a peace was signed in February of 1903. Tejas, New Granada and Louisiana all gained land at the republic’s expense and the independence of the Californian Republic was recognized (thought the majority of land traditionally known as Californian remained with the Collectivists). The Collectivists branded this as a sign of weakness on the part of the old regime. They continued to go from strength to strength with the Tejans and Louisianans withdrawing from the fight to secure their new territory. An armistice was signed in April between the Collectivists and Californians and a small independent republic was set up. Focusing all their energy on the south now the Collectivists were able to smash the remaining loyalist resistance. On May 31st the city of Veracruz fell, the last vestige of the old republic was gone. The country was rebranded the Collectivist State of América, adopting a new flag the Collectivist fist and sickle (red on black) surrounded by four stars reflecting the four regions of the new state: California (that part still in their control), Mexico, Yucatan and Central America. The new regime concluded peace with the Entente, honouring the terms of the previous peace with many too tired to keep fighting, and the new nation turned instead to a process of reconstruction.

The fighting continued to wind down in the rest of North America as well. Freed from the western front, Louisiana moved even more forces to blunt the Allied advance into their country. The Allies for their part were growing increasingly war weary and all parties came together to negotiate peace. The government in New Orleans ceded land to New England, and the Dominions of Columbia and Indiana. The losses were not dire, and the gaining of land in the west did go some way to making up for the lost territory. The Kingdom of Carolina meanwhile imploded as an alliance of disenfranchised rebellious black citizens and Collectivists rose up across the country. The king was deposed and fighting broke out. The loyalist forces soon joined with the Virginians and North Carolinans to battle the radicals, but all sides were simply too exhausted to stick with it for long. By July 1903 the old regime was dead and a new Republic of South Carolina had been declared. The rest of the former kingdom had been reorganized into the Worker’s State of Georgia, based out of Atlanta; the new Collectivist nation quickly formed alliances with its ideological cousins in Mexico City and La Paz. In South America also the fighting ended. New Granada and Peru agreed peace and divided the former Ecuador between them. La Plata and New Granada made peace with the Allies with La Plata ceding some of its northern territory to Brasil (which also gained Dutch Guiana), but its annexation of Cordoba was recognized (the Collectivists were a bigger worry to everyone now). All in all however New Granada and La Plata emerged from the Great War in the best state of the former Entente.

New Englander artillery fires on Louisianan positions in the final battles before the armistice:

1903 would also see the collapse of the Entente in Asia. In early February the Allied armies took the city of Delhi. With its armies routed and its capital lost the Second Sultanate unravelled. Regional rivalries, religious minorities and disaffected generals broke free of the former kingdom’s control. The Allies swept through in the chaos linking up with the Pashtun rebels in the north. The old lands of Delhi were divided, some going to British India, some to Persia the rest to the new Pashtun state and a collection of small British protectorates. The Allied Indian army then linked up with the Anglo-Persian force in the west and drove into Russian Central Asia. The Russians, who had withdrawn here, were able to fight an impressive tactical withdrawal however and the front moved slowly. The Turks meanwhile began a steady, but rather limited, move through the Caucasus Mountains, putting yet more pressure onto the Russian southern flank. The Empire in China was overrun by April 1903. The fall of Beijing, the Republican counter-attack, and the increasing involvement of Britain, Korea and Japan were simply too much for the fracturing Imperial cause. The armies of the Republic of China crushed the last Imperial force near Xian on April 13th. China was once again a unified state.

The grestest political earthquakes that would end the Great War would shake the continent where the war had started four blood-soaked years ago: Europe. It was in March when the cracks finally burst forth for the Russian Empire. Under pressure and facing invasion from the Baltic to the Pacific the Russian army broke. The huge morale shock of the Balkan debacle and the increasingly deteriorating supply of food and ammunition had sapped the fighting spirit of the Russian army. As the combined Prusso-Polish-Danish army drove ever onwards from the west and the Allied armies invaded Ukraine from the Balkans the Russian soldiers began to desert. The officers split. Some tried to force the troops to counter-attack and were ignored, seized or killed. Others joined their men in abandoning their positions, concerned only now with finding safety and food. Like a rot the desertion spread throughout the Russian army on the European front, soon whole units were mutinying and dissolving into the countryside. A bad situation became one of the great turning points in history with the events of the May Coup. Disgruntled, alarmed and furious at the collapse of the Russian war effort and the increasingly authoritarian rule of the Tsar, a gang of nobles and their allies stormed the palace of St. Petersburg and placed the Tsar and his family under arrest. Unfortunately a group of soldiers attempted a counter-coup to free the Tsar. In the fighting the Tsar, his wife, and their second son were killed. The loyalists drove the rebels out, who fled to join fellow conspirators and sympathisers who had risen up in Moscow. In a stunningly short amount of time, about two months, Russia was consumed by civil war. Nationalists had risen up in various places across the Empire. The Finns had rebelled and were soon being supported by Danish men and material. The advancing Poles and Prussians linked up with rebellions in the Baltic and the Ukraine. The loyalists, rallying around the former Tsarevich and now Tsar Ivan VI, still held St. Petersburg, parts of the northwest, the southern and eastern parts of the country. The main opposition was the Moscow based Republicans (a rather loose collection of aristocrats wanting a noble oligarchy and more traditional liberal republicans) which governed an increasing area around Moscow itself. There were also a small Collectivist faction in Rostov and disorganised nationalist groups in Central Asia.

Republicans erect a street barricade in St. Petersburg to hold off the loyalist counter-coup:

In August the Tsar, still the recognised leader of Russia, came to the conclusion that he needed to make peace with the Allies and focus on the escalating civil war. In return for peace, financial support and a promise not to support the rebels, St. Petersburg concluded the Treaty of Stockholm with the Allies. Seeing the plight of the monarchist regime and after making great gains over the last few months the Allies forced a harsh peace. Finland and the Ukraine were made into independent kingdoms whilst Livonia was made a free duchy under joint Prusso-Polish protection. Russia was forced to accept the independence of the newly established Pashtun state (formed after the collapse of Delhi), renounce its protection of Xinjiang and Mongolia and cede land to Korea, Japan, Persia and Turkey. Osel and the other Russian islands in the Baltic were given to Denmark. The Poles took the biggest prize. Eager to see Russia pushed back as far as possible, many in Poland called for a restoration of their 17th century borders. Even the beleaguered Tsar wasn’t willing to accept this; and the other Allies were too war-weary to fight for more land for the Poles. In the end Poland was rewarded with land roughly reflecting its borders from the early 18th century; as well as taking Bessarabia from the UKD giving it access to both the Black and Baltic Seas (this was the only territorial loss for the UKD which had been compensated with financial aid in accordance with its 1902 deal with the Allies).

The collapse of Russia happened roughly simultaneously with the end of the war on the Western Front. The Franco-German armies here had fought a bitter and determined war against the Allies. Reverses in Italy and Iberia however combined with a rapidly deteriorating economic home front had greatly undermined their fighting strength. The surrender of the other Entente powers worldwide allowed the Allies to concentrate more and more of their energies against France and Germany. In the end the two nations were simply massively outmatched. In April the Prussians took Stuttgart the de facto German capital. The nation surrendered three days later. As their German allies bowed out the French found themselves being forced to withdraw all along the front. This withdrawal soon became a rout. The civil unrest in Paris turned to outright rioting and a collapse of social order. In an attempt to placate the agitators and under pressure from within and without the French king, Louis XIX, abdicated the throne and was succeeded by his eldest son Charles. His reign would last four days. On June 4th 1903 a Collectivist led force stormed the palace and deposed the monarch and his government. Charles reportedly took his own life rather than fall into Collectivist captivity, though the true cause of his death has remained disputed. France collapsed into chaos as Collectivists and their allies seized power in Paris and other cities. The loyalists turned to Prince Henri, the only surviving son of Louis XIX, who was in Tunis in command of the rapidly collapsing French war effort in Africa. Whereas the Collectivists were united under a command structure in Paris, their opponents were hopelessly divided between constitutionalists, autocrats and republicans.

Henri, now king, like the Russian Tsar sought to make peace with the Allies to focus on reclaiming France. AS they had done with Russia the Allies, after years of war and in a far superior negotiating position, pushed for severe terms at the Treaty of Palermo, where peace was also signed with the other Entente members. France was stripped of all its overseas possessions minus Tunisia (as this was where the legitimist government was located they couldn’t really take it, though this irritated Italy to no end who had desired it). The colonial territory was split between the Allied nations (Portugal and Britain took the lion’s share of French Africa with Denmark, Mysore and Spain gaining lands there and elsewhere) and Quebec (much reduced in size) was made an independent kingdom under a Bourbon cousin of Henri’s (republicanism had never really been popular there), though any future dynastic union between the two Bourbon lines was forbidden. The Kingdom of Sardinia and all its lands were given to Italy now almost completely unified (except for those lands held by the Hapsburgs). The “German Question” was to be solved with the complete dissolution of the kingdom. Trier’s admission to the FRR was recognised. Bavaria was given to Austria-Hungary which also set up a puppet kingdom in Serbia (wiser heads prevailed here and decided not to annex more Slavic lands, the Bavarians were seen as easier to deal with though), and after securing great influence in the UKD, Vienna was now the dominant power in the Balkans. Saxony, Wurzburg and Hessen were annexed to Prussia which also gained indirect control over the new Duchies of the Palatinate, Swabia, Wurttemberg and Baden which were made subservient to (yet technically independent of) the Prussian crown. What was left of Jugoslavia was split between a Greek Albanian puppet and a Bulgarian kingdom under Turkish protection. France was also forced to accept the independence of Luxembourg and Flanders (though French speaking Wallonia, part of France for over a century, remained). Though the Collectivist government in Paris was not present at the signing, the Allies and the regime signed a secret treaty with along the same lines as Palermo in a bid to end the fighting no matter who triumphed between Paris and Tunis. A public treaty was not possible as it would have given legitimacy to the Collectivist establishment.

The month of August is regarded by most historians today as the defining month of the Second French Revolution* and a pivotal point in history. It was at this point that if the loyalists had rallied and fought it is the majority belief that the Collectivist regime would likely have been crushed. Instead however the completely exhausted, hungry and war weary French army dissolved. The nobility and most of the loyalist leaders fled to Tunis to join King Henri; though many likely saw this as a precursor to mounting a campaign of re-conquest. The troops still in France either joined the Collectivists or simply went home to their families. The French navy, badly damaged in an unsuccessful final do or die battle with the British near Dover in April, split; two thirds joining the loyalists. Fighting in France proper had ended by September as the flow of loyalists to Africa became an exodus. The Collectivists were in control of France with what was left of the army loyal to them whilst the loyalists in Tunis were too weak to invade and the Allies too exhausted to intervene. The Collectivist State of France was now an established reality. In Tunis the French kingdom in exile plotted revenge. After over four years of conflict and leaving a radically changed world and a civil war still raging in Russia, the Great War had ended.

* The First being the failed rising in the 1780s.

Flag of the Collectivist State of France: The Collectivist Black and Red along with the traditional white representing France:


September 1903 - The World at the end of the Great War

The Entente have been defeated. France, Peru and América have fallen into revolution. In Russia a civil war rages. New Granada, Brasil and La Plata have lost thousands as South America was rent in blood. The Louisianan Empire has been defeated by New England and Britain, but has triumphed in the west. Quebec is now an independent monarchy in the New World as yet more political upheaval rips through the former Kingdom of Carolina.

Poland has paid in blood for its new empire as Prussia and Austria-Hungary dominate Germany and the Balkans. Italy has pushed closer to full unification as Spain has reunited. Britain and Portugal have gained much, but have not done it easily. Denmark and Turkey have forced their way into the rank of respectable powers as France's empire has been carved up. China has been unified under a republic as Korea and Japan have become major players in the East. Mysore and Viet Nam too are modern industrial states on the rise.

The World stands on the brink of a new age.



The Post War World: 1903-1919

The Russian Civil War
Part I


The Tsarist forces, now loyal to Tsar Ivan VI, had secured the region around the capital St. Petersburg. In the far east of the country the Tsarists also held sway. The Republicans were divided into three main groups, one in the north in Karelia and Archangel, a force in the south along the Ural river and the main army in and around Moscow. In the Caucasus a Collectivist regime in Rostov was fighting to spread its rule and in Central Asia national and ethnic groups were in open rebellion. Russia in October 1903 was in chaos.

The Tsarist forces however had two advantages over their rivals. First, unlike the Republicans, they were unified under the Tsar and had a single command structure. Secondly the Tsar remained the recognised ruler of Russia and other states (particularly monarchies) were more inclined to support it than the republicans or the more radical rebels. After the opening months of chaos as the front line settled, the Tsarists had managed to gather a sizeable army in the north near St. Petersburg. Fearing that the capital would fall the Tsarists launched a two-pronged counter-offensive, one moving northeast and the other south pushing the Republicans from the gates of the capital. The offensive was a success, Vologda fell and they were able to smash attempted Republican risings in Pskov and Novgorod. Britain and Denmark, both wary of the opposition forces, began sending aid to the Tsarists, principally supplies of food, medical supplies and ammunition, though neither country had any desire to directly intervene. The Tsarists continued to push back the Republicans in the north of the country. Eventually the offensive was called off as a fierce winter began to set in. In the east of the country the Tsarists were gathering more forces and were in co-operation with Japan, who, like Britain and Denmark, did not like the idea of radicals taking power in Russia.

The winter of 1903 was a make or break point for the Republican cause. The nature of their rising resulted in various groups throughout Russia trying to take control of the movement. As campaigning slowed throughout the winter the Republicans attempted to forge a unified command structure. The three Republican power centres (Moscow, Archangel and Uralsk) were cut off from one another so communication between was minimal. The Moscow group, commanding the most forces and holding Russia’s second city, was the most important however. Throughout the winter the Republicans here divided into three factions: the smallest group were the Constitutionalists who were willing to keep the Tsar as a ceremonial figurehead if it meant ending the war, the Volkovists (named for their leader Nikolai Volkov) who pushed for a more traditional republican government but with a nationalist/militarist edge, and the Krupists (after their leader Sergei Krupin) who held more radical beliefs calling for a revolutionary republic of mass participation and had a distinct anti-religious and isolationist edge. As the factions competed for influence word arrived that the Tsarists were braving the snow and pushing towards Orel. This frightened the Republicans into unifying. The Constitutionalists threw their support behind the Volkovists forming a shaky coalition “government”. The Krupists were not happy but agreed to support the effort. United under the Volkovists with Nikolai Volkov and the two other leading members of the government, his close friend and former general Yuri Barinov and the Constitutionalist’s leader Andrei Golovin, began organising the Republican forces. They had lots of supplies under their control from the stores for the Great War and large forces of soldiers. The first goal of the Republican government was to launch a spring offensive southeast-ward to link up with the Republicans there who had formed their own command structure.

In the south the Collectivist regime that had seized power in Rostov was expanding its control. There was little in the way of organised resistance in the Caucasus to their advance. The Republicans and Tsarists were focused on one another and most of their armies were in the north and east. The Collectivists had by early 1904 secured most of the Caucasus from Rostov to the new Turkish border. Advances at Astrakhan and Baku were both repulsed however by the Tsarist garrisons as the government in St. Petersburg began to re-allocate troops to the south. The situation is this theatre grew incredibly more complicated in March of 1904. The Cossacks, who were for the most part loyal to the Tsar (or at least not fans of Collectivism) began a serious campaign against the Collectivists in the western Caucasus. Elsewhere the Turks, in the name of assisting their Muslim brothers, had begun an incursion over the border with the aim of bringing this region under their control. To make things even more complicated over-zealous Collectivists had entered Eastern Ukraine in the hopes of starting a Collectivist rising there. It did not materialise and now Ukraine (a country of just over 6 months old) was fighting the Collectivists in earnest.

Collectivist Cavalry prepare to charge Ukrainian forces west of Rostov:

In the north the Republican spring offensive was launched in late February. The plan was to seize Saratov, cross the Volga and link up with the southern group. The operation failed spectacularly. The Tsarists crushed the advance forces and proceeded to hurl back the invasion, seizing Orel in the process. The news was a big boon for the Tsarists and Ivan VI who were stretched fighting the Republicans, Collectivists and everyone else who fancied a rebellion. The Central Asian groups were fighting for their independence against St. Petersburg and against each other as Persia, Pashtunistan and Xinjiang each started to play politics in the region. To the Republicans it was a great blow. The Volkovist government almost fell after the loss of face it suffered, but they managed to remain in control. As the front stabilised throughout early 1904 the war continued to see the lessons of the last war taken into account. Aircraft and airships for both Moscow and St. Petersburg were in service fighting, scouting and harassing enemy ground forces. To better protect their supply lines and fight effectively over such large distances the Tsarists in May 1904 deployed armoured cars in small numbers for the first time, the birth of mechanized warfare. By July the Republicans also had their own armoured cars in service. The Tsarists, sensing they had the initiative, launched a massive attack in late July at Tver, the gateway to Moscow. After fierce fighting in and around the city the Republicans held preventing the Tsarists from moving on to Moscow. The Battle of Tver was the Republicans’ first real major success and meant that the Civil War would not be over soon.

The Russian Civil War: Part II

The victory at Tver was a great morale boost for the Republican cause. The success was used to further unite the Republicans, especially behind Nikolai Volkov and his government. As the Tsarists regrouped from the defeat the Republicans spent the time wisely further expanding and equipping their growing forces. The Tsarists for their part were backed by the arrival of more supplies and weaponry from Britain and Denmark, though neither country was going to commit troops to the conflict. Seeing the defeat at Tver and sensing a glorious opportunity to secure its borders, the young Kingdom of Finland moved troops to secure Karelia. King Carl Mannerheim of Finland ordered the first divisions of the new Finnish army over the border to secure this region. This prompted a serious debate in Denmark. As Finnish and Tsarist forces clashed with one another, could Denmark as an ally of Finland (a country Copenhagen saw as part of its sphere) still supply the Tsarists, who were now Finland’s enemies? In the end the Danes withdrew their support for the St. Petersburg government and redirected its aid to Finland. The Karelian distraction allowed the Republicans time to prepare for a new offensive. Using aircraft to scout and harass Tsarist lines the Republicans were able to attack in the south, aiming to link up with the Republicans in this area. Republican cavalry and armoured cars smashed through the Tsarist lines and within a few months had reached Samara, finally linking up with their comrades.

The war ground on across Russia over the next few months as all sides sought to position for advantage. In the south the Collectivists were wearing down the Ukrainians and pushing them back. The government in Kiev, fearing the whispers of a domestic Collectivist rising, sought to negotiate a cease-fire with the regime in Rostov. The Collectivists accepted, refocusing their forces on the other Russians and the limited Turkish push in the south. In the north the Tsarists, though still battling the Fins, achieved a great success when Count Uvarov’s army finally smashed the northern Republican faction at Archangel. The Republicans however, now unified in the south, were pushing north and west. Orel was recaptured in early 1905 and Kursk was seized soon after. The Tsarists were becoming increasingly reliant on aid from Britain in the west and Japan in the east. In the summer of 1905 the Poles began poking around on the frontiers. There was no serious invasion, as Warsaw was already trying to hold onto its new lands without adding more, but skirmishes between Poles and Russians of all allegiances were very common. The Tsarists also had success elsewhere; the Central Asian nations that had been attempting to carve out land for themselves were being systematically re-conquered.

Tsarist troops fighting in Central Asia:

Despite gains the Republican cause was dealt a blow in late 1905. The Collectivists orchestrated coups in Astrakhan, Tsaritsin and Baku bringing more lands under their influence. These actions signaled the beginning of the first serious fighting between the Collectivists and the Republicans for control of the Volga and the northern Caucasus. The Tsarists were unable to capitalize on this however. They were becoming seriously stretched, fighting all across Russia. The Finns proved to be a determined enemy. With the threat to St. Petersburg a real one the Tsar began ordering elements of his government, including his son Alexi, to head east. A second Tsarist command structure began building in Omsk, east of the Urals. This proved to be a wise decision. In February of 1906 Russian Republican leader Volkov pulled off a great diplomatic coup. Willing to cut some losses in order to achieve a greater victory, Volkov signed an agreement with the Collectivists, promising to recognize their state in the Caucasus in exchange for peace. The Collectivists, fighting hard against the Turks and Tsarist remnants in the region, accepted. Freed from this southern front the Republicans were able to re-deploy their forces for a new all-out offensive aimed at the jewel of Russia: St. Petersburg.

The Battle of St. Petersburg would be one of the most brutal and devastating of the 20th Century. The Tsarists fought with grim determination and made the Republicans pay in blood for every step they took in the capital. The formerly magnificent city was torn apart in the fighting. The fire and smoke that ripped through St. Petersburg were visible from great distances. The stand of the Tsarists at the Winter Palace has become an iconic moment in Russian, and indeed world, history. Eventually, even with the direct intervention of British Royal Navy ships in the Baltic, the city fell to the Republicans. The Tsar, having been rescued along with thousands of others by British and loyalist ships, vowed to fight on. In truth the fall of St. Petersburg was a turning point, from then on the Republicans held the initiative. Striking another deal, this time recognising Finnish control over Karelia (they could take it back when they were ready…), the Republic began its Eastern Offensive. As the Collectivists drove the Turks out and solidified their new state, the Republic’s forces drove eastward, forcing the Tsarists back. Despite being outnumbered the Tsarists fought a determined retreat through Siberia, backed by Japanese aid and with Britain re-deploying the Tsarist escapees from St. Petersburg.

Republican troops push through the suburbs of St. Petersburg:

The Siberian Campaign dragged on and on. The Republic slowly moved ever eastward, the Tsarists falling back. The new de-facto Tsarist capital in Irkutsk, after the withdrawal from Omsk, became a focal point for resistance as the terrain, weather and foreign aid allowed them to hold back the Republicans. After months of continued fighting with little gain on either side both factions were on the point of collapse. Portugal now stepped in offering to mediate a solution. At a conference in Lisbon the two sides, both desperate for peace and time to rebuild, came to a compromise. Russia would be split along the current front-line, roughly along the river Ob, with a Republic of Russia in the west (centred at Moscow) and a rump Empire ruled from Irkutsk in the east. Both sides came away irritated to have to accept the continued existence of the other. The Republic, sharing uneasy borders with Poland, Finland and the new Collectivist Republic of the Caucasus, was faced with the daunting task of rebuilding the country. Great cities such as St. Petersburg and Tsaritsin (now Volkovgrad) had to be nearly entirely rebuilt and the infrastructure was in ruins. In the east the Tsarist regime sought to secure its hold over the east and develop the areas it controlled as much as possible. All in all it is estimated that over five million Russians died in the Civil War of 1903-1907, more than doubling the loss of life suffered in the Great War. Both Russias now faced the long difficult task of rebuilding. And preparing for round two...

Black and White France
The Kingdom and the State (1903-1910)

The Civil War in France that had erupted with the coup of 1903 would rage in one form or another for four years. The rapid collapse, dissolution and withdrawal of the royalist forces in the early months of the fighting resulted in the Collectivists seizing control of metropolitan France whilst the exiled Bourbon regime eyed them over the waters from Tunis, the last holdout of the former French overseas empire. The fact that the majority of the remaining French navy sided with the royalists meant that a Collectivist assault against Tunis was impossible; not to mention the fact that the Mediterranean was dominated by the Anglo-Portuguese fleets who were vehemently opposed to the expansion of Collectivism. The Royalists did however continue their strikes at the Collectivist State. Naval raids against military and commercial bases, the destruction of Collectivist naval bases in small scale landings and the continuing rescue of royalist sympathizers characterized the fighting. The royalists in Tunis did attempt a full scale invasion near Nice in 1905 after word of infighting in Paris and tensions between Prussian and Collectivist troops near Baden, came to the court of King Henry V. After the successful seizure of a beach-head the landing forces were withdrawn in the face of stiffer than expected Collectivist resistance and an ending to the tensions between Paris and Berlin. By 1907 it was simply clear that neither side could defeat the other. The Agreement of Messina was signed enacting a cease-fire between Paris and Tunis. No formal peace was signed and neither the Kingdom nor the State recognised the other. The fighting however was, for the moment, at an end.

The Collectivist State of France (CSF)
· Head of State: Director Lucas Trouilloud
· Head of Government: Prime Minister Jocelin Thomas
· Government Type: Collectivist Republic
· Capital: Paris

The first task for the State after assuming power was the establishment of a working government. The leader of the Collectivists, Lucas Trouilloud was quickly cemented as the leader of the new government. Under his guidance the Collectivists oversaw the drafting of a constitution and the formation of the regime. Differing from their Monterrist ideological counterparts in Mexico City, the French Collectivists eschewed local autonomy in favor of a united strong central state. The new government of the State was based around a one hundred member elected Assembly, seats allocated along lines of proportional representation, which worked side by side with the Interior Ministry (members appointed by the Director, though must be approved by a majority in the Assembly) on legislative and administrative matters, whilst a Director (elected separately by popular vote) served as Head of State and had great executive powers. Elections were to be held every five years. The first elections were held in 1905, elections it should be noted that were fraught with corruption, chaos and ill preparation, returned a Collectivist majority of 69 seats (the rest being split between the Solidarists, the moderate liberal Republicans and the more radical Nationalists, the parties of “reaction” and “monarchism” were of course banned). Trouilloud was made Director and his long term associate the uncharismatic but genius administrator Jocelin Thomas became Prime Minister.

The Collectivist government was faced with three priorities: secure the state, rebuild the economy and end the monarchist threat. The Messina Agreement of 1907 dealt with the third point but the other two required work. Counter-revolutionary risings in Brittany, Brandtist revolts amongst the German minority in Lorraine, Prussian troops in Baden and secessionist stirrings in Walloonia all plagued the government. A combination of savvy politics, military force and strong justice saw Paris re-assert its grip on the country and prevent its collapse. The Collectivization of the French economy was more difficult. Simultaneously trying to rebuild an economy brought low by years of war as well as totally changing the economic foundations of France was not an easy task. 1906 saw widespread famine across much of France, specifically in the south, with estimates being of near 350,000 deaths as a result of hunger and disease. Inflation and the total absence of a consumer economy saw the French economy spiral towards collapse. Only a combination of the financial aid from Spain (itself host to a powerful Collectivist movement), the political will and skill of Trouilloud and Thomas and the increasing power and authority of the government in Paris staved of total disaster.

By 1908 the State had endured the worse of it. The food and currency issues had been rectified and the collectivization of agriculture and industry was well under way. Economic growth in 1908 and 1909 was anemic at best, but it was still growth. The continued industrialization of the northeast coupled with a programme of railroad construction helped tackle unemployment and helped knit a still agrarian France together. With the economy stabilized the focus turned to political issues. The Collectivists in 1909 adopted a new constitution allowing for universal suffrage of all men and women over the age of 20. This move won the Collectivists the support of much of the youth and female population. A wave of neo-Classical romanticism swept France. The reconstruction of Paris and other areas damaged by war and anarchy saw the adoption of Greco-Roman architecture, art adopted a classical style and the use of the word “citizen” amongst the common people became widespread. Simultaneously the emergence of the PCC (Parti Collectiviste Catholique), which merged Collectivist and Catholic teachings, in the south and west of the country marked the rise of a brand new political movement. The military was reformed as well. The vast forces of the later years of the Great War and the revolution were re-organized along lessons learnt from the Great War and the Russian Civil War. A focus on airpower and a defensive doctrine were adopted, whilst work into expanding the use of armoured cars was begun. A new navy, focused on submarines and smaller vessels, was commissioned; though it would take years to build even a modest force. As Collectivism gained influence in economically stagnant Spain and in parts of southern Italy, the CSF was able to break its political isolation and signed the Treaty of Co-operation with Spain in 1909, an economic and ‘good-will’ agreement, followed by the Franco-Américan Pact of 1910, a link between the two Collectivist powers. As the world headed into the chaos of the upcoming decades the Collectivist State of France was clawing its way out of the abyss. The 1910 elections saw the Collectivists increase their majority to 74 seats.

The Results of the 1910 CSF Election.
Nationalists (Green): 3 Seats
Collectivists (Black): 74 Seats
PCC (Gold): 10 Seats
Solidarists (Red): 6 Seats
Republicans (Blue): 7 Seats

The Kingdom of France
· Head of State: King Henry V
· Head of Government: Prime Minister Charles de Croy
· Government Type: Constitutional Monarchy
· Capital: Tunis (Paris)

Unlike the Collectivists the Royalists had an easy time of setting up a government. Henry formed his administration in exile quickly assisted by his able Prime Minister Charles de Croy. As exiles and refugees fled the mainland the émigrés population in French Tunis exploded. Maintaining the constitutional changes of his predecessors Henry cemented his rule in exile and quickly won the backing, if not direct support, of much of Europe. French, and a few Sardinians, soon began to make up a majority of the population in the major cities. Relations with the native Arab populace were the biggest domestic issue on the agenda. The Arab lower classes were forced into the area and were disenfranchised. The greatest success of the early years however was the integration of the Arab middle class (an emerging force under French rule) into the regime. The granting of the vote to certain sections of the Arab population (a very small percentage of it to be sure) did go a great way to easing the tensions. After a few years a unique Franco-Arabic culture developed. Catholicism became popular in parts of the country, though Islam was firmly entrenched with the more rural lower classes.

Britain and Portugal remained the greatest supports of the Bourbon regime, both concerned about the regime in Paris and the spread of Collectivism world-wide. Financial aid from London and Lisbon was paramount in the early years of the Bourbon exile. The Royalist military was re-organised. The population and financial base of the Kingdom leant towards the maintenance of a smaller professional force, backed up by a powerful navy. Local Arab units were raised and exiles from elsewhere joined these groups forming the French Foreign Legion. Tensions with Italy, who had coveted Tunis, were high but the government in Rome was more concerned about the integration of the new lands and the Austrians in Venetia to risk too much. The Kingdom remained contacts and a network of sympathizers and informants throughout Metropolitan France throughout this period, always awaiting an opportunity to retake their homeland.

Lions in the Grass
Austria, Italy, Greece and Turkey

The Austro-Hungarian Empire

Austria-Hungary emerged from the Great War as the strongest power on the European continent. Russia was in chaos, France in revolution, Saxobavaria erased from the face of the map and Jugoslavia dismantled. Poland and Italy were respectable forces in their own right, but only Prussia truly came close to rivaling the empire. The population of the empire, now including Bavaria, exceeded 50 million people. The majority of who were Austrian, German or Hungarian. Victory in the Great War (despite the deaths of one and half million of the Empire’s people) served as a powerful unifying influence for the Empire. The common struggle against the forces of pan-Slavism and Brandtist Germany had tied together the multitude of peoples in the Empire. The efforts to further integrate and appease the various nationalities of the Austro-Hungarian Empire would represent the chief political issue for the next few years. Ferdinand II, a charismatic, resourceful and immensely popular figure (especially with the army and the Hungarians due to his Hungarian wife), would orchestrate a series of reforms aimed at capitalising on this period era of good will.

Though the Hungarians, long with their own parliament and various constitutional and legal benefits, were as loyal (for the most part, there were still fringe elements) as the Austrians, other groups clamoured for more. The Czechs had fought hard and had remained loyal throughout the fighting. Vienna was determined to reward this service. Briefly there had been considerations to bring the Czechs into full membership into a new Triple Monarchy. Instead an autonomous assembly was created in Prague and Czech joined Austrian (the language was still predominately German but had begun to adopt more and more Magyar and other influences) and Hungarian as the compulsory languages to be taught in school across the Empire. The Croats did not receive a local assembly as the Hungarians (jealous of their position) did not wish to see other nationalities gain influence especially the Croats who were subservient to the Hungarian crown. Croat customs and traditions were however granted legal protection and the creation of a new military medal to commemorate Croat soldiers in the Great War was well received by the local populace. The Bavarians for their part were simply seen as misguided Austrians and a period of “re-education” was enacted to weed out Brandtist elements. The majority of Bavarians lacked the will to continue pushing for a unified German state and preferred life in the liberal reformist empire to the reactionary Prussia. What to do with Venetia presented a problem. Eager to counter pan-Italian notions Vienna began a programme to highlight the glories of medieval Venice, the Serene Republic. Efforts to play up Venetian history and uniqueness was a risk as it may end up threatening their position in the empire, but Vienna thought it was one worth taking to keep the region from becoming beset with Italian nationalists.

By 1910 the Empire had gone through a series of constitutional changes that had succeeded in further integrating and unifying the realm. The government in Vienna and above all the emperor was hugely popular, and only fringe elements in Hungary, Venetia and Dalmatia were of any real concern. The public education system, its roots back in the days of Joseph I, was the best in Europe (and possibly the world), the infrastructure continued to develop and industrial production was at an all time high. Plans to expand suffrage to more elements of the population (even women!) and increase the representative elements in the national and local governments were underway. The army, rebuilt from the war, was the largest in Europe (minus the Republican Army of Russia) and was leading the way in the pioneering development of airplanes, automatic rifles and artillery. The navy, long an afterthought in Vienna, was growing at a steady pace also. Diplomatically Austria and Italy remained very tense, whilst with Saxobavaria quashed competition and wariness between Vienna and Berlin began to re-emerge. The alliance with Greece was renewed however and the two countries were both eager to work together in the Balkans. Austria also remained friendly with the British; Ferdinand II went on a tour of Britain in 1909 that was a great success. In Vienna in 1910 there was a definite feeling of optimism.

The Italian Second Republic

Italy had entered the Great War late. Capitalising on the reversal of fortune for the Entente the Italians had joined the Austro-Hungarian armies in the north against the Bourbon powers. For its efforts Italy had completely absorbed the former Kingdom of Sardinia, gained Sicily from the now defunct Kingdom of Aragon and taken parts of France’s former African empire (though not Tunis!). Despite its gains the Italian government was not satisfied. Tunis was still denied them by the Bourbon exile whilst Venetia remained under Vienna’s thumb. In 1904 following the war’s end the Italian government drafted a new constitution. The con-federal nature of the previous constitution had denied the formation of a strong central government, something that had (so it was believed) hampered the Italian war effort. The Federalists got their way and the new constitution of the Second Republic saw a stronger central government, a loss of power to the federal provinces (now including Sardinia-Corsica, Piedmont and Sicily), the moving of the capital to Rome, a new national flag absent the Florentine Fleur-de-lis and a host of smaller changes.

Initially the new northern territories were a drain on the Italian economy. However after a few years with the new lands redeveloped and integrated the economic centre of Italy shifted northward. The north of the country became richer and had a blossoming middle class and market economy. The south however stagnated. Regionalism and distaste for the new central government grew hand in hand with a blossoming Collectivist movement. In 1908 Collectivists were the largest party in the Sicilian assembly, and in 1909 they captured Sardinia-Corsica and Naples. In the north more conservative and liberal mainstream parties held sway. The only truly unifying force in Italian politics in this period was irredentism, specifically towards Venetia and Tunis. Italy, unlike other countries, did not cut its military expenditure after the Great War but continued to invest in its military, and above all its navy. The Italian navy continued to grow in size in the years after the Great War. A new generation of battlecruisers was launched starting in 1908 and by 1910 only the Royal Navy was larger in the Mediterranean. Wary of Britain, Bourbon France and Austria, Italy sought out new allies. Fellow republic Spain was an obvious choice and the two signed an alliance in 1909. Italian diplomats and agents were also becoming very active in Berlin and the Balkans.

The Kingdom of Greece

The Kingdom of Greece had been on the winning side in the Great War. It had faced invasion from the armies of Jugoslavia and Russia but had forced the Entente armies out of its country and gone on to play a decisive role in the defeat of Russia and its allies in the Balkans. For its sacrifice Greece had gained new lands in the north and control over its new Albanian protectorate. Greece however hungered for more, specifically lands at the expense of Turkey. A new wave of nationalism swept Greece in the wake of the Great War. The result of this was the Neo-Hellenic movement. This saw the glorification of Greece’s ancient past, the expansion of Greece eastward and a new sense of militant nationalism. When the new Greek king took the name Alexander upon his ascension in 1907 it was clear what way the wind was blowing. Alexander continued the military build-up in Greece as well as instigating the Greek minority in Turkish lands to agitate for unification with Greece proper. The Greek majority areas in southern Albania were annexed in 1908. Following the renewal of the alliance with Austria, Athens began to contact dissident groups in the Turkish protectorate of Bulgaria, sounding out possible allies in a potential future conflict. Greco-Turkish relations continued to sour rapidly as Alexander had his eyes set on the greatest prize of all: Constantinople.

The Sultanate of Turkey

The Sultanate of Turkey was currently ruled by Ismet III Turan (the fifth sultan since the founding of the Sultanate). In the decades since the Second Balkan War, Turkey had sought hard to modernize and “Europeanize” itself. The previous reforms (including the adoption of Latin script, the overhaul of the archaic Ottoman system, a modern bureaucracy and a professional military) had all worked wonders on the Turkish state. Istanbul was a blossoming city and major geopolitical focal point and was capital of the modern Turkey. Turkey had, starting before and continuing during the Great War, been a beneficiary of British financial aid and heavy investment. The Turkish economy had grown massively, particularly in the case of new mining sectors and a modern infrastructure. Victory in the Great War had resulted in the re-puppeting of Bulgaria, gains in the Caucasus, the return of Arabia to Turkish rule and influence in the new Anglo-Turkish Protectorate of Egypt. National pride and loyalty to the Turan Dynasty was at an all time high after the defeat of the Russians and French.

In the years after the Great War the Turkish national morale was dealt a blow by the reverses in the Caucasus at the hands of the Collectivist regime based in Rostov. This defeat was coupled with the rising tide of Islamic fundamentalism. Derived from a combination of the old Whaheydi influence, anti-European anger and conservative wariness of the pace of reforms, this rising force of radical Islamic factions was a major concern for Istanbul, where the moderates sought to hold onto power. Britain grew increasingly wary of the developments in Turkey; and, also due to other factors, London soon began reducing its aid to Turkey. This was compensated somewhat by the discovery of large oil reserves in Arabia and Mesopotamia that were soon being explored and exploited. Relations between the ethnic Arab populace and the Turkish government were strained however. As tensions in the Aegean began to rise gradually, skirmishes and ‘incidents’ began to multiply. Seeing a conflict with Athens as a useful way to unite the country behind the government, Ismet III exploited the seizure of a Turkish merchant vessel by the Greeks as a cause for war. On July 19th 1910, citing years of “provocations” and gambling on the great powers not intervening, Turkey declared war. The Greco-Turkish War had begun.

The Greco-Turkish War

The Greco-Turkish War began on the 19th of July 1910 following the Turkish declaration of war. Announcing immediate mobilization the Turks began moving forces westward to face Greeks. Greek minority communities in western Anatolia were suddenly host to large Turkish garrisons, who were eager to prevent any sort of rising amongst the population. A sizable Turkish army soon began gathering in Thrace, in preparation for a move into north-eastern Greece. The outbreak of war went some way to quieting the domestic divisions within the Sultanate. The fundamentalists and moderates put aside their differences and rallied behind the war effort. Even the local Arab populations in Arabia and Mesopotamia seemed eager for the fight. The Turkish navy left port and began to harass the Greek coastline and attack Greece’s merchant fleet. The Sultan sent a request to Bulgaria, a Turkish client state, to join the war (offering chunks of Thrace).

The Greeks however acted first. Stunning the Turks completely the Greeks launched a surprise invasion of Thrace before the Turkish army there could assemble. Having more recent combat experience, from the prolonged campaign in the Balkans, and being the beneficiary of years of Austrian and British military aid, the Greek army was equipped with large contingents of modern aircraft and armoured cars. The Greek Airforce rapidly achieved air superiority (a new term in warfare) in Thrace and Greek airships began bombing Turkish supply lines and garrisons. The Battle of Adrianople (Edrine) was a clear Greek victory, one which sent the Turkish forces scattering. The Bulgarians, seeing this, opted instead for neutrality, in effect breaking their connection to Turkey. Eager to see the Turks driven back, Austria-Hungary began increasing the supplies of weapons and material to Greece, either overland through Serbia or by sea. Britain was unsure on how to react. A long time ally of both, London decided not to intervene (at least not yet), and instead it turned its attention to pacifying its new Indian territories and improving its African empire. In 1911 the Greeks, using reconnaissance aircraft based on the various Aegean islands, spotted the Turkish fleet assembling near Rhodes. Sensing a great opportunity Athens dispatched its own navy to defeat the Turks in a decisive battle; which indeed is what transpired. The Turkish navy was not an insignificant force but it was not yet fully assembled at Rhodes (an invasion of either Crete or behind Greek lines in Thrace was in the works) and was outmatched by the entirety of the Greek navy. The twin disasters at Adrianople and Rhodes sent shockwaves through the teetering Sultanate.

Fierce fighting reminiscent of the trench warfare of the Great War raged in Thrace:

As the Greeks began to press relentlessly on towards Constantinople the fundamentalists in Turkey began growing restless. Various groups were soon in contact with one another, with the younger son of the Sultan, Prince Kadir, apparently at their head. As more and more Turkish troops were sent westward, the simmering Arab discontent flared up. Though the rebellions were under control they prevented the proper allocation of force to the western front. In early 1912 Greece, dominant in the air and at sea, launched an amphibious invasion of western Anatolia. Backed by local militias amongst the Greek population, the Greek army soon took Smyrna. Other cities soon began falling into Greek hands. The Turkish army in Anatolia was soon on the retreat; only in Thrace were they able to put up serious resistance. Events went from bad to worse for Turkey when the Collectivist Republic of the Caucasus (CRC) invaded from the northeast, in an effort to link up with Collectivist sympathizers there. Turkey was forced to redeploy even more of its troops away from the fighting around the Aegean to this theatre. Fortunately, though parts of Georgia were lost, the rugged terrain here enabled smaller Turkish forces to defend fairly effectively. Britain, not eager to see a Turkish collapse (it would open the door to a feared resurgent Russia), was soon attempting to mediate a settlement.

Following another disaster to Greek hands near Aydin in March 1913 however the Turkish fundamentalists decided enough was enough. They seized control of Ankara and declared a new government, with Prince Kadir as the new Sultan. The new regime gained support and control quickly, as many had grown dissatisfied with the current leadership. Those that resisted fled to Egypt, which was now under total British control. Britain, abhorred by the new fundamentalist regime and its anti-European rhetoric soon terminated its treaties with Turkey (though London did continue to attempt mediation, geopolitics trumps ideological distaste). Seeing the Greek army from the walls of Constantinople and eager to prevent a civil war, the old Sultan abdicated and called on the remaining loyalists to support the new government. As the fighting with the CRC was soon ended the new government launched a renewed effort to halt the Greek advance. Though they were able to keep the Greeks from Constantinople, the Turkish efforts in Anatolia resulted only in a stalemate. As the Arab rebellions continued (rumours of Persian meddling were rife) the Turkish government knew that they must make peace with Athens, or the whole country could unravel. After further months of bloody stalemate, Turkey accepted Britain’s offer to mediate. The Turks were able to keep hold of Constantinople but were forced to give all the Aegean islands to Greece, swathes of western Anatolia and a chunk of Thrace. Bulgaria's full independence was recognized and the country entered into an alliance with Greece. Freed from external threats the Islamic Kingdom of Turkey was able to smash the remaining rebel forces in the south and east. Festering resentment and anger at the Europeans for the defeat however remained. The eyes of the Turkish populace gazed westward at the victorious and greatly expanded Kingdom of Greece with hatred and fear. The Greeks may have won this round, but they would have their chance for revenge.

The New Powers: Part I
The Kingdom of Mysore

The Kingdom of Mysore had steadily grown from a backward south Indian state into a modern industrial power in little over a century. Allied with Britain it had crushed its Indian rival Nagpur, expanded its influence into southeast Asia and Africa before humiliating the Netherlands and cementing its position as a force to be respected. Joining the Great War on the side of the Allies, Mysore had played a key role in the victory in India over the Entente, had conducted triumphant campaigns in Aethiopia and Aden and had seized Sumatra from the crumbling Dutch Empire. By 1903 the Kingdom of Mysore was widely regarded as an emerging great power.

Economically the country was going through a rapid transformation, leading it to be dubbed the “Tiger of India”. The traditional weaving economy was undermined by increasing global competition and instead Mysore’s leaders sought to modernize the country’s economic model. Industrialisation, driven by investment from Britain and Portugal, exploded in the country in the 1880s and 1890s and continued its relentless pace. The abundance of iron and copper in the southwest of the Indian subcontinent were the lifeblood of this new economy. In the post-Great War state the large coal deposits near Pondicherry (in the former French India) combined with the newly found importance of aluminium for aircraft, combined to enable Mysorean industrial output to double between 1903 and 1914. A string of factories producing everything from aircraft to consumer goods as well as mechanized vehicles for agriculture and for war, began to dot the country. The population of Mysore in 1900 was just over 40 million; by 1914 it (including the absorption of French India) had swelled to nearly 60. Post-1903 gold and coffee from Aethiopia, as well as oil and rubber from Sumatra combined to help diversify and drive the Mysorean Industrial Revolution. The central position of the country, as well as its ring of basis from Aden to the Straits of Malacca, enabled Mysore to emerge as one of the world’s leading trading powers. Within a decade of the end of the Great War, Mysore had the fourth largest merchant fleet in the world (after Britain, New England and Portugal, and just ahead of Denmark and Spain).

The annexation of former French India precipitated a new cultural shift in Mysore. French rapidly became the second language of Mysore (ahead of English yet a ways behind Kannada). Other elements of Mysorean culture began to take on a French influence. Wine became an increasingly important element of Mysorean cuisine, partnering the traditional South Indian food styles (though even they were soon taking on French styles). Coffee, imported from Aethiopia, also became wildly popular in Mysore, replacing tea which was still the drink of choice in the lands ruled by Britain. Rugby, brought over during the Great War by troops from Canada, Columbia and New England, rapidly grew in popularity throughout Mysore. Clubs began forming in the major cities and Mysore played its first international in 1911 (a fairly convincing 32-9 defeat to Canada). On an administrative side the country was modernized as the bureaucracy was streamlined. Less rigid tax and commercial policies combined with the industrial boom led to the development of a vibrant and growing middle class. Mysore itself was booming to become a major city, with a 1910 population of well over a million. Great patrons of the arts the ruling Wadiyar dynasty, transformed the city of Mysore into a masterpiece of culture and elegance. They were also pragmatic as modern necessities and an enviable sanitation system facilitated the development of this city. The city of Hyderabad (with a population of over two million) was the largest city in the kingdom though others such as Madras, Calicut, Bangalore and Pondicherry also emerged as major centres of importance. Though legislative and economic progress continued unabated in this period, Mysore continued to remain an absolute monarchy.


Despite the end of the Great War in 1903, Mysore continued to fight in the years after. An occupation of Aethiopia, increasing the control of Mysore over that kingdom, resulted in a continuing low-level insurgency against Mysorean rule, a rebellion that Mysore could never quite defeat. The conflict did allow Mysore to continue its military development, almost a constant war game to test out new tactics. Mysorean military commanders gained a great respect for airpower in the conflict, its reconnaissance and harassment capabilities primarily. With the former French Aden also now in their hands, Mysore also began to take an increasingly important role in the Middle East. Mysorean influence showed its hands up and down the Persian Gulf and Red Sea, whilst the Sultanate of Oman fell into their sphere. A booming modern industrial state with a formidable navy, Mysore was overwhelmed with a desire for expansion. Britain, it was believed was still too strong, and regardless relations with London were still positive. Instead Mysore began to cast its eyes hungrily on Southeast Asia…

The First Rugby World Cup
New England - 1915

The rapid expansion of international rugby in the latter stages of the 19th Century, and the early years of the 20th, had seen the sport spread across the globe. Popular throughout the British and Portuguese Empire and their spheres, the sport had firmly established itself in North America, the British Isles and elsewhere. In 1915 New England staged the first World Cup, inviting fifteen other rugby playing nations to enter. The United Kingdom was a willing participant, though it was decided by the British Rugby Association to honour the wishes of the regions and enter four separate teams representing the constituent members of the UK. Portugal and Brasil also opted for their own individual teams.

The nations were randomly drawn into four groups of four. Each team would play the others once and the top two would progress to the Quarter Finals and another random draw (though two countries from the same group could not be drawn together in the Semi Finals. Two points were awarded for a win, and one each for a draw.

Group A
New England 6
Mysore 4
North Carolina 2
Ireland 0

New England 24 v 14 Ireland
North Carolina 7 v 10 Mysore
Mysore 20 v 11 Ireland
New England 21 v 19 North Carolina
Ireland 24 v 26 North Carolina
New England 15 v 12 Mysore

Group A was a fiercely contested group. Hosts and pre-tournament favourites New England won all three of their matches (though two by less than five points), including a tight final match against Mysore, who were a surprising success and also progressed after their shock wins over Ireland and North Carolina.

Group B
Portugal 6
England 4
Indiana 2
Columbia 0

Portugal 26 v 12 Indiana
England 29 v 3 Columbia
Columbia 12 v 14 Portugal
Indiana 8 v 29 England
England 22 v 29 Portugal
Indiana 23 v 13 Columbia

England and Portugal met expectations by qualifying from this group. The clash between the two in Boston was an electrifying affair, as Portugal came back to win after being 15 points down. Columbia were not expected to do well and didn't, but they almost shocked Portugal in their second match. The team were reported to saying that they "had had a jolly good time and were happy to have done the Dominion proud".

Group C
Wales 5 (+18)
Quebec 5 (+15)
Louisiana 2
Brasil 0

Louisiana 26 v 15 Brasil
Quebec 24 v 24 Wales
Wales 18 v 16 Brasil
Louisiana 25 v 30 Quebec
Quebec 22 v 12 Brasil
Wales 19 v Louisiana 3

Group C was arguably the most competitive group. The two French speaking North American nations were both placed in Group C and the two were eager to play one another for the first time, a match won by Quebec. Wales and Quebec played one of the games of the tournament with an exciting 24-24 draw, with both going through and Wales topping the group on points difference.

Group D
Virginia 6
Canada 4
Scotland 2
Australia 0

Virginia 25 v 12 Scotland