If Napoleon won, would 1848 still happen?

If Napoleon never invaded Russia, or invaded Russia favorably with a better plan/significant luck, ultimately resulting in the 1812 borders (decided at the War of the Fifth Coalition) remaining almost as stable as the borders of the Congress of Vienna, then how would it affect events like 1848-1849 liberal nationalist movements?

Would these movements instead become reactionary in character, against the liberal First French Empire? Or would the absolutism of the French Empire have led it to become reactionary by that point, and the rebels would seek liberal reforms like OTL?
 
If Napoleon never invaded Russia, or invaded Russia favorably with a better plan/significant luck, ultimately resulting in the 1812 borders (decided at the War of the Fifth Coalition) remaining almost as stable as the borders of the Congress of Vienna, then how would it affect events like 1848-1849 liberal nationalist movements?

Would these movements instead become reactionary in character, against the liberal First French Empire? Or would the absolutism of the French Empire have led it to become reactionary by that point, and the rebels would seek liberal reforms like OTL?

Much depends on how the Empire would evolve in the later reign of Napoléon and - especially - his son. Napoléon's own tendencies were autocratic, but the institutions allowed for liberal parliamentary monarchy if voters' control is no longer enforced. Nonetheless, I would not see it going more liberal than OTL July Monarchy.

Given the rise of German and Italian nationalism predates the PoD, the nations' movement in the huge French Empire would be a factor of troubles. The Napoléons' reaction to it would be interesting, but I am afraid we do not have enough material to predict the rule of Napoléon II.
 
Given the rise of German and Italian nationalism predates the PoD, the nations' movement in the huge French Empire would be a factor of troubles. The Napoléons' reaction to it would be interesting, but I am afraid we do not have enough material to predict the rule of Napoléon II.
But could the Confederation of the Rhine appear more favorable than Prussia or Austria to the German nationalists?
 
Don't see how it could as long as it remained a French puppet.

The Habsburgs and Hohenzollerns were reactionary, but at least they were German.

If Napoleon II is smart, his ancestry can be used in propaganda : "the union of two imperial families, the old and the new, of two races, French and German, of two aspirations, desire for Liberty and need for Order etc"
 
I think after Napoleon I, power would certainly devolve to the assembly, and a few more countries may be recreated, such as the Netherlands. Napoleon II would be extremely young at his coronation, no doubt, so that means he would not be the absolute monarch his father was.

What you may see with the Confederation of the Rhine is its expansion into conquered Prussia and/or Austria, and the country being renamed Germany so as to subvert German nationalism. As for Italy, it’s not too difficult for the “Kingdom of Italy” to include Naples as well after Italian nationalism booms. After all, many early Italian nationalists were in support of France.

Another thought is that the French Empire may be seen as French, and purely French in language and culture. This means that the Illyrian provinces may gain independence albeit in personal union with France, and some Italian departments of France may be transferred to Italy.
 
I think after Napoleon I, power would certainly devolve to the assembly, and a few more countries may be recreated, such as the Netherlands. Napoleon II would be extremely young at his coronation, no doubt, so that means he would not be the absolute monarch his father was.

What you may see with the Confederation of the Rhine is its expansion into conquered Prussia and/or Austria, and the country being renamed Germany so as to subvert German nationalism. As for Italy, it’s not too difficult for the “Kingdom of Italy” to include Naples as well after Italian nationalism booms. After all, many early Italian nationalists were in support of France.

Another thought is that the French Empire may be seen as French, and purely French in language and culture. This means that the Illyrian provinces may gain independence albeit in personal union with France, and some Italian departments of France may be transferred to Italy.

A rather optimistic view of absolute monarchies (as Napoleon I's France was). It's usually in no one's interest to reduce the power of the Monarch but instead to seek to wield power in the name of the Monarch.

Arguably the 1848 revolution were more nationalistic than liberal across Europe (although their goals sometimes coincided). Italian nationalists favoured France over Austria as France held little or no Italian land. If the reverse is true they may favour anyone but France.
 
A rather optimistic view of absolute monarchies (as Napoleon I's France was). It's usually in no one's interest to reduce the power of the Monarch but instead to seek to wield power in the name of the Monarch.

Napoleon I’s France was an absolute monarchy, but I don’t think Napoleon II’s France would be so. He would be so young when coming to age that I suspect the assembly would easily ignore him. You can easily see how an absolute monarchy becomes anything but.

Furthermore, the Bonapartes have always been very liberal monarchs. Liberals were in power during many Napoleonic regimes. They would hardly lose any power in this scenario, and as a result you can see how a Napoleonic Europe would weather an 1848 better than the OTL equivalent.

Italian nationalists favoured France over Austria as France held little or no Italian land.

Italian nationalists supported France because Italian nationalism has its roots in French rule. For instance, Mazzini’s father was a Giacobin, working in Napoleonic Italy, as well as its republican predecessor. ITTL, they would still support France as many nationalists would already be in positions of power.
 
Liberals were in power until Napoleon found them irritating (Louis in Holland for example).

Napoleon's "liberal" tendencies were strictly limited to what made things work for him.

Italian nationalism does not have it's roots in French rule. Italian nationalists were able to operate under French Revolutionary governments - Jacobins were only in favour until 1794 (arguably maybe as long as 1797). After that Jacobins were not exactly popular with Napoleon or anyone else in the French government.
 
Napoleon's "liberal" tendencies were strictly limited to what made things work for him.

Napoleon won’t be in power by the time *1848 happens.

Italian nationalists were able to operate under French Revolutionary governments - Jacobins were only in favour until 1794 (arguably maybe as long as 1797). After that Jacobins were not exactly popular with Napoleon or anyone else in the French government.

An exceptionally odd thing to note about the Directory was that they hated French Jacobins with a real passion, working them to death in Guyana, but Giacobini were a very important part of French client states in Italy. For instance, France invaded the Papal States as it was persecuting homegrown Jacobins.

Many local radicals (well, radical is a relative term. Italian radicals weren’t as radical as their French equivalents) remained in power through Napoleonic rule, as Napoleon found them convenient to build his rule off of.
 
Don't see how it could as long as it remained a French puppet.

It depends on what a "puppet is." If it's Westphalia, then absolutely this won't last. I actually could see Baden and Westphalia ending up as the most revolutionary German states, along with the Grand Duchy of Berg...



Furthermore, the Bonapartes have always been very liberal monarchs. Liberals were in power during many Napoleonic regimes. They would hardly lose any power in this scenario, and as a result you can see how a Napoleonic Europe would weather an 1848 better than the OTL equivalent.

Napoleonic France had secret police, censorship, and conscription.
 

kernals12

Banned
I don't see how France could keep a hold on this sort of giant unwieldy empire with so many different ethnic groups. I think 1848 might happen earlier.
 
I don't see how France could keep a hold on this sort of giant unwieldy empire with so many different ethnic groups. I think 1848 might happen earlier.

Some sort of European superstated united by liberal ideas and economic growth? Seems plausible to me!
 
Could a French dominated network of states with "liberal" constitutions develop? A kind of "Soviet" bloc, with generally self governing kingdoms and principalities acknowledging France as the source of their constitutions and deferring to it on foreign policy.

This though might require German and Italian nationalism to remain mostly cultural and be satisfied with a few states rather than a nation state a la francais. Or for France as leader of a 'Commonwealth" to be less chauvinistic.
 
Here's an example. You're a German factory owner in Berg (the Ruhr), part of the Continental System, which is basically a tariff wall against the British. Do you want to join Prussia because they speak the same language, and risk losing your Rhenish markets? Your French iron?
 
Could a French dominated network of states with "liberal" constitutions develop? A kind of "Soviet" bloc, with generally self governing kingdoms and principalities acknowledging France as the source of their constitutions and deferring to it on foreign policy.

The SU was comfortably bigger than all its satellites put together. And even so its ascendancy didn't last. French ascendancy would be even shorter-lived.

This though might require German and Italian nationalism to remain mostly cultural and be satisfied with a few states rather than a nation state a la francais. Or for France as leader of a 'Commonwealth" to be less chauvinistic.

Neither of which is even remotely likely.
 

kernals12

Banned
Some sort of European superstated united by liberal ideas and economic growth? Seems plausible to me!
We're not talking about a European Union where member states have autonomy over most of their laws and even their own armies, we're talking about a giant empire ruled from Paris. It would be a giant Yugoslavia and we all know how that turned out.
 
Here's an example. You're a German factory owner in Berg (the Ruhr), part of the Continental System, which is basically a tariff wall against the British. Do you want to join Prussia because they speak the same language, and risk losing your Rhenish markets? Your French iron?


If you are a Catholic trade unionist in the Saar in 1935, will you vote to rejoin a Germany now ruled by the Nazis, where your unions, your political parties, your newspapers and your Church Youth organisations will all be suppressed, merely because the Nazis speak the same language as yourself?

Answer - Yes, in 91% of cases. Nationalism trumps Catholicism, Protestantism, Liberalism or any other ism you care to name. And in the 19C it was the rising force among the educated classes, which provided most of the liberals. A liberalism which required subordination to a foreign power would be dead in the water.

George Orwell said the last word on this point. " One cannot see the modern world as it is unless one recognizes the overwhelming strength of patriotism, national loyalty. In certain circumstances it can break down, at certain levels of civilization it does not exist, but as a positive force there is nothing to set beside it. Christianity and international Socialism [he might have added “democracy”] are as weak as straw in comparison with it."
 
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