L’Aigle Triomphant: A Napoleonic Victory TL

The Late Regency
The Late Regency

The association of the Regency Era with national stagnation - and, depending on who you ask, decline - in British historiography is, of course, quite understandable. The period roughly coincides with the last twenty-five years of King George III's reign, including the regency of his son George starting in 1811 after the King was declared mentally unfit to rule, and then the ten-year reign of George IV from 1820-30, concluding with his daughter Queen Charlotte's ascension to the throne and the start of the Charlottean Era. The circumstances of this time in British goes beyond mere regnal periodism, however. George III had always been mentally feeble but by the end of the Napoleonic Wars was outright delusional and insane, but his son was perhaps even more unpopular - fond of a lavish and fashionable lifestyle, constantly embroiled in public scandal, and held in contempt as much by the British street as he was by his own government's ministers.

It came to be, then, that the monarchy's prestige ebbed to perhaps its historical nadir just in time to coincide with the humiliating end of nearly a quarter-century of wars with France and the concurrent economic depression that defined British life for most of the 1810s. [1] Many British intellectuals, particularly diplomats and others who had spent a great deal of time overseas, openly mused whether or not a revolution such as that which overthrew the French Bourbons could occur in London next, and the constant riots, protests, and grassroots movements in 1815-17 seemed for a moment likelier than not to do so. The prices of British goods had already been depressed by a lack of markets to sell them to during much of the war era (and attempts to impose mercantilist policies on the United States had resulted in the Americans responding with protectionist measures of their own and two war scares that had threatened British North America) and a commercial reorganization and boom on the Continent further lowered prices, giving the British minimal opportunity to restock their spent coffers despite new trade avenues opening up, while the Spanish overseas colonies were close to British goods almost entirely despite the Peace of Aix. The result was a time of tremendous hardship, in which hundreds of thousands of Britons in the last years of George III's reign and much of George IV's decamped for opportunities in the culturally similar United States or North American colonies.

Britain did have one boon in that time, however, and that was the integration of the East Indies as a new colony. The East India Company was unexcited about direct rule over Batavia by London when it had enjoyed such a free hand in the western and southern subcontinent and a political feud erupted between Company officials in Calcutta, overwhelmed British colonial administrators in the Malayas, and the Colonial Office in London which crucially enjoyed the robust support of the Prime Minister Bathurst. In later years, Britain's focus on bringing the BEI under its control was recognized as a missed opportunity to crush the Maratha Confederacy and bring the whole of India under its suzerainty; [2] by the time the East India Company attempted to put down the Marathas in the late 1820s, the Marathas enjoyed French and Italian support and were able to keep Britain out of western India entirely. By 1818-20, however, trade with the East Indies and locales beyond began to flourish and return London to its energy of cosmopolitanism that had seemed to be lost in previous years. More ships passed to Canton every year, Royal Navy vessels camped out in Macau's harbor to defend Rio de Janeiro's claim on all "territories of the House of Braganca" and British control of the Straits of Malacca gave them a key strategic and commercial advantage.

This modest revival in British colonial and mercantile fortunes coincided with a slow return to normalcy in Continental and trans-Atlantic trade. The new American President inaugurated in March of 1817, William Crawford, was somewhat less hostile to British interests than his predecessors Jefferson and Madison and focused rather on Washington's interests in Spanish Florida; the Foreign Office under the Tory grandee Castlereagh, first solely as Foreign Secretary and, after he conspired to nudge out Bathurst in 1818, also as Prime Minister, continued London's longstanding Austrophilic line and reinvigorated British trade with the Habsburg realms as well as the Ottomans, hoping to reestablish her influence in southern and eastern Europe. Castlereagh of course was perhaps one of the most reactionary and repressive Prime Ministers of 19th century Britain; by the time he committed suicide in 1822, he was perhaps one of the most unpopular figures in the history of the United Kingdom, barring only Cromwell.

Of course, it was not trade or political machinations that reinvigorated fickle public support for the monarchy so much as the intrigue in 1816 around the marriage of Princess Charlotte of Wales, the Prince Regent's 20-year old daughter. Charlotte was a curious figure even by the standards of Regency Era ladyhood; her education was poorer than that of most aristocratic women her age and she had lived in various spurts of public isolation at different country manors, hidden away by her strict and controlling father and largely ignored by her mother. This worked to her advantage in the public eye, however; Charlotte even as a young woman was rumored to have strong Whiggish sympathies, and her and her mother's treatment at the hands of her tremendously despised father engendered a great deal of sympathy with the average Briton. As the war wound down and Aix was negotiated by Castlereagh, the question of who would take Charlotte's hand became live. The Prince Regent's choice was William of Orange, the deposed Dutch prince who had spent much of the wars fighting in various British units and who had been wounded at Walcheren. William, however, was regarded as a "bore" and the public was unenthusiastic about the marriage of a strict, gruff Dutchman to popular princess; instead, Charlotte's preference of her father's cousin William Frederick, the Duke of Gloucester, won out.

Gloucester was an even stranger choice from a modern perspective. He was forty years old and had remained single his entire adulthood on the off-chance that he may have to "do his duty" and marry his cousin's daughter. The choice of an Englishman as Charlotte's husband was more popular with the British public, however, and so they were married in late 1816 in a grand affair at Westminster Abbey; the Royal Wedding of Princess Charlotte and Prince William Frederick was widely publicized and celebrated in British newspapers and was seen as an event that revitalized British interest in the monarchy and enhanced its prestige. Charlotte and William Frederick were not particularly in love and regarded their marriage as one of convenience; after Charlotte gave birth to three sons - George (1818), William (1820) and Edward (1823) - they had no more children and largely lived separately until William Frederick died in 1834, aged only 58. Nonetheless, three royal heirs was enough to get the British public excited about their monarchs again, and what a future - hopefully sooner than later - that had Charlotte and her children in it rather than the Prince Regent, might look like...

[1] That gap of fighting from 1809-14 on the continent means there was quite a bit of commercial and agrarian recovery on the Continent, so British goods are not there to fill the gap in the same way, and they still have the trade restrictions thanks to the Rome Decrees
[2] Anglo-Maratha War of 1818-19 butterflied here
 
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Beatriz

Gone Fishin'
Surviving marathas (and presumably the Sikh Empire, the Rajputs and Sindh) at this late of a juncture is interesting because most TLs have them absorbed eventually.
 
if i understand correctly uk has control of south and east india then. With the west of india surviving, even if as a zombie due to French support?
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Surviving marathas (and presumably the Sikh Empire, the Rajputs and Sindh) at this late of a juncture is interesting because most TLs have them absorbed eventually.
I’ll admit if not positive how feasible and plausible that is, but I wanted to do something a little different with a Balkanized India that’s something of a contested playground between various powers
if i understand correctly uk has control of south and east india then. With the west of india surviving, even if as a zombie due to French support?
View attachment 767910
More or less, yeah. The final collapse of the Marathas was in 1819 so not sure how accurate that map is but it’s Madras and the Bengal (plus the East-central Gangetic Plain) that are the centers of British authority
Not gonna lie, dissapointed that Leopold did not end with Charlotte. Wonder if we'll find out what will become of him.
Leopold will show up in time elsewhere! It was just very hard to make Leo-Charlotte happen without the circumstances of OTL’s late Napoleonic period
 
More or less, yeah. The final collapse of the Marathas was in 1819 so not sure how accurate that map is but it’s Madras and the Bengal (plus the East-central Gangetic Plain) that are the centers of British authority
https://commons.princeton.edu/mg/british-conquest-of-india-1753-to-1890/ <- I found a better picture, it is from princeton university.
As much as there is no mega conquest of India by the British they will still have at least 1/3 of India. About the rest to survive I don't know if it would be possible, they already control a good part, and even with the help of the france the region would be very valuable for the british to simply let these kingdoms survive.
Now the largest kingdom (Marathas) might survive, but the small ones probably wouldn't. It will be a dead nation that is kept alive simply by France's investment alone.
 
Do we have any maps? If not so do we need any @KingSweden24?

Would love to make one or more depending on how frequently we need to update them (once a week I could manage a new one for others beside all other stuff for my own AU/TL, beside that number limitation, no other major rules).

NO COSTS naturally ALL FOR FREE as always to fellow Alternate History and overall history enthusiasts here on this side in need of any sort of ancient, modern or futuristic map for their AU/TL, I'm not Scrooge McDuck.

My last one was for CELTICEMPIRE (see below), so if there is a interest I just need a few details of what all has changed and what borders go where so I don't make any mistakes. Also nations can and will have any color wish you have including similar but slightly different colors for colonies, protectorates and the likes if that is the wish. State borders and internal provinces can be shown according to any change or wish you might have.
MJ3hn1R.jpeg
 
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https://commons.princeton.edu/mg/british-conquest-of-india-1753-to-1890/ <- I found a better picture, it is from princeton university.
As much as there is no mega conquest of India by the British they will still have at least 1/3 of India. About the rest to survive I don't know if it would be possible, they already control a good part, and even with the help of the france the region would be very valuable for the british to simply let these kingdoms survive.
Now the largest kingdom (Marathas) might survive, but the small ones probably wouldn't. It will be a dead nation that is kept alive simply by France's investment alone.
Yeah, France will definitely have a big role to play in keeping Britain out of western/northwestern India, both through direct and indirect means
Do we have any maps? If not so do we need any @KingSweden24?

Would love to make one or more depending on how frequently we need to update them (once a week I could manage a new one for others beside all other stuff for my own AU/TL, beside that number limitation, no other major rules).

NO COSTS naturally ALL FOR FREE as always to fellow Alternate History and overall history enthusiasts here on this side in need of any sort of ancient, modern or futuristic map for their AU/TL, I'm not Scrooge McDuck.

My last one was for CELTICEMPIRE (see below), so if there is a interest I just need a few details of what all has changed and what borders go where so I don't make any mistakes. Also nations can and will have any color wish you have including similar but slightly different colors for colonies, protectorates and the likes if that is the wish. State borders and internal provinces can be shown according to any change or wish you might have.
MJ3hn1R.jpeg
@Leonidas made one a chapter or two back that looked pretty accurate, but I may need one for Cinco de Mayo… PM me? I’m horrible at making maps lol
 
Another good chapter, not much to say here but a a indian subcontinent not fully controlled by the Brits is good in my eyes.
i think the british will make up for this with the total conquest of the east indies, the philippines (in the future), thailand, viatnam, australia and a few other islands in the pacific. Probably in the future they will try to suck a lot of money from the Chinese.
 
Another good chapter, not much to say here but a a indian subcontinent not fully controlled by the Brits is good in my eyes.
I promised a Britscrew and that is what you shall receive haha
i think the british will make up for this with the total conquest of the east indies, the philippines (in the future), thailand, viatnam, australia and a few other islands in the pacific. Probably in the future they will try to suck a lot of money from the Chinese.
Yeah they’ll have other places to maneuver to. The DEI was also by FAR the most profitable/lucrative European colony for many years so Britain has a boon in landing it, of course
 
Nice new chapter, Europe is under the full domain of Napoleon and Britain is already feeling it. Interesting that India isn't under the full control of the British TTL, will be interesting when someone finally unifies the Indian Subcontinent.
Yeah they’ll have other places to maneuver to. The DEI was also by FAR the most profitable/lucrative European colony for many years so Britain has a boon in landing it, of course
With Britain gaining the East Indies from the Dutch, I'd like to see how they interact with more of Asia now with a complete monopoly over the region. Could we see more Anglo-China wars happening? Would the Opium Wars of OTL be much greater? Could we possibly see a longer lasting breakup of China? How will Korea and Japan end up? Could we also look more into South America, how is Brazil doing?

Also, how are the Ottomans doing after Napoleon rampaged through Europe? Maybe we could see an earlier breakup of the Ottoman Empire or maybe it reforms successfully. Keep up the good work.
 
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I wonder if this TL would be considered a Brazil-wank
 
Nice new chapter, Europe is under the full domain of Napoleon and Britain is already feeling it. Interesting that India isn't under the full control of the British TTL, will be interesting when someone finally unifies the Indian Subcontinent.

With Britain gaining the East Indies from the Dutch, I'd like to see how they interact with more of Asia now with a complete monopoly over the region. Could we see more Anglo-China wars happening? Would the Opium Wars of OTL be much greater? Could we possibly see a longer lasting breakup of China? How will Korea and Japan end up? Could we also look more into South America, how is Brazil doing?

Also, how are the Ottomans doing after Napoleon rampaged through Europe? Maybe we could see an earlier breakup of the Ottoman Empire or maybe it reforms successfully. Keep up the good work.
Thanks!

We’ll get some checking down in those areas soon enough; the entire Braganza court and establishment absconding to Rio, and staying there, has big impacts on Brazil and the Southern Cone, as I’m sure you can imagine.


I wonder if this TL would be considered a Brazil-wank
Absolutely. Brazil will be a BIG player ITTL
 
I wonder if this TL would be considered a Brazil-wank
I don't think it will be a wank due to other countries being much stronger in this timeline (especially France which is a giant). Now if something like alto peru asks to be part of the united kingdom of portugal and brazil it will probably be a wank.

In 1821, the Spanish colonial empire in America was crumbling because of the Napoleonic occupation of Spain, and the troops of Generals Bolívar and Sucre, who had already liberated Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador, were already approaching the Upper Peru Region.
Afraid of the carnage that libertarian troops could cause in the local population, in June 1822, the three governors of the departments of Alto Peru met in Cuiabá (Capitania de Mato Grosso/Brazil) and asked the governor to take sides with the prince regent. (future D. Pedro I ) to occupy the territory in favor of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves. It was better (the governors thought) to be occupied by a nation of a monarchical character than to venture into a fragile and uncertain republic.
Immediately, in July of that year, the governor of Mato Grosso sent the troops stationed in the captaincy to Alto Peru, these troops closed the borders and prevented the advance of libertarian troops in Peru, and in a letter, the governor (of Mato Grosso) sent to the Prince Regent the proposal of the local authorities and the communiqué about the order to send the troops.
The letter reached D. Pedro I in November 1822, Brazil had already declared itself independent.
Upper peru is the red part of the map.
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