As somebody who has always had something of an interest in the roads not taken during Italy's 19th century, I'm enjoying this a lot. Keep up the good work, folks!
 
Oooh, this is cool, I am really looking forward to it! Germany is the one place whose 1848 I know quite a bit of. Right about now as events unfold differently in Italy, the Heckerzug appears in Germany. Or at least it did IOTL, and unless the Vorparlament is less moderate as IOTL (which I don't see why it would), I suppose it would unfold similarly. And while I'm not sure how the divergences in Italy could really affect the situation in Baden, the German 1848 would have taken a different turn if Baden should successfully radicalise and we get Hecker and Herwegh and the like in important roles. Or, for a very different direction, if there is no Battle of the Scheideck, and/or von Gagern is not killed, his brother might view co-operation with the Left in a different light.

France, and to a smaller degree Western parts of Germany (as well as Vienna), too, are the places where we can observe most clearly how 1848 failed because the liberal bourgeoisie was scared shitless of a proletarian replay of 1793, and this division prevented them from forming the kind of coherent popular militant force they would have needed to successfully confront the aristocratic armies or cause the latter to stand down, compelling their monarchs (or compelled by them) to accept liberal constitutions. Maybe this could still have been bridged if there had been a Radical leader that could both integrate the socialists / republicans and calm the bourgeois liberals. Or if there had been a less hopeless military campaign than Schleswig-Holstein to engage in together, in the case of Germany.

As for Austria - which can or cannot be taken to be included in the topic of "Germany" at this point -, I guess it all depends on how the Italian Question is resolved, and when. If Vienna gives up early, this might be a boost to revolutionary forces in many places, yet at the same time it would free military capacities for quick crackdowns from Prague to Buda/Pest and of course at home in Vienna, too. If things drag on and Austria pursues an OTL-like Schwarzenberg policy against all odds, OTOH, then it would be easier for various nationalities to break away and prepare for the reactionary onslaught. I tend to expect the former - which might mean 1848 is going to be drowned in even more blood than IOTL in the rest of the Habsburg realm...
It looks like you have a good knowledge of German 1848 :)
I do agree that the original sin was committed when the Vorparliament empaneled a Commission of 50 totally skewed towards the moderate liberals, which emarginated the radical democrats: the Hecker insurrection in Baden has its roots in this margination (which is eerily similar to what happened in France, but comes even earlier than there), it was clearly doomed from the beginning and its suppression by troops of the German Confederation was applauded by the delegates in Frankfurt, who did non manage to realize that the suppression of the insurrection was made by princely troops, acting on the basis of the old order and not under the control of the parliament.
The best thing would be to give a few more clout to the radical democrats in the Commission, but it would take some peace maker with at least a little vision (ideally, someone who could play a role similar to the ones played by Giuseppe Ferrari and Cavour): von Gagern? maybe together with Ignaz von Dollinger, who also was a delegate? Incidentally, von Dollinger is a person of interest for the future development of the TL.
Could you suggest someone on the radical side who might be amenable for a compromise?

I agree that Austria may play a lesser role (as they ultimately did IOTL too) in the development in Frankfurt. It would be better if the dispute between Gross Deutschland and Klein Deutschland could be nipped in the bud (but it will not be such an easy thing to do). Same thing for the war with Denmark: it is ironic that the Parliament of Frankfurt would be so fired up in support of the insurrection of Holstein, which was basically an aristocratic insurrection in defense of aristocratic privileges, but that's nationalism for you.

@Tarabas and I have a tentative map in mind for Germany, but it's still a work in progress. We would appreciate any suggestion you may have: at the very least, it would be interesting to see if it fits into our road map, even better if it allows us to improve it. From the political discussions at Isola della Scala you should have at least some understanding of our goals 😏
 
As somebody who has always had something of an interest in the roads not taken during Italy's 19th century, I'm enjoying this a lot. Keep up the good work, folks!
Thanks, Geordie. :)
@Tarabas and I believe that the insurrections of 1848 might have ended in a much better way than they did IOTL, and we're trying our best to explore the roads which were not taken (not to mention putting on the stage individuals who ended up playing just a minor role IOTL)
 
It looks like you have a good knowledge of German 1848 :)
I do agree that the original sin was committed when the Vorparliament empaneled a Commission of 50 totally skewed towards the moderate liberals, which emarginated the radical democrats: the Hecker insurrection in Baden has its roots in this margination (which is eerily similar to what happened in France, but comes even earlier than there), it was clearly doomed from the beginning and its suppression by troops of the German Confederation was applauded by the delegates in Frankfurt, who did non manage to realize that the suppression of the insurrection was made by princely troops, acting on the basis of the old order and not under the control of the parliament.
The best thing would be to give a few more clout to the radical democrats in the Commission, but it would take some peace maker with at least a little vision (ideally, someone who could play a role similar to the ones played by Giuseppe Ferrari and Cavour):
I agree. Well, technically you do have an early PoD in this TL. Therefore, it would not be utterly implausible - but it would need an explanation, for sure - to prevent such an early split. Baden played a huge role in the build-up to the Revolution - not just because it was geographically close to France, but also because industrialisation had made some progress here already, especially in Northern Baden, and, most importantly, because Baden had one of the most liberal constitutions of the entire Bund, with a relatively free press and a lively parliament. The schism took its roots here. It clearly showed in 1847 already, when the radical democrats had met and voted on a political programme in Offenburg, while the moderate liberals met in Heppenheim a month later. The Offenburgers were, then, judicially persecuted for high treason (so much for Baden's liberalism...), so they were organizationally hampered in a crucial moment; the Heppenheim convention showed massive personal continuity with an early-1848 convention in Heidelberg, from where the call for a Vorparlament came (also inspired by articles from Bassermann and other Badenian liberals who called for a German-wide directly elected parliament). So, the marginlization of the radical democrats was something that the liberals certainly did on purpose, but it was also, at the same time, an outcome of a certain continuity.

If you want to mend the schisms among the German revolutionaries somewhat - I hear my teenage Marxist self scream: "Futile! The class antagonism wanted out, Germany was developed enough for its bourgeoisie to have become anti-revolutionary!" -, there are tons of ways to tweak factors which influenced the political environment in which the build-up to 1848 occurred. Not having the liberal constitution in Baden is probably a bit too heavy for your taste? (Though I think there might be a way to get there - and one which has other interesting potentials, yet would not necessariy jeopardise the recognisability of the German political landscape... I can PM you two about it tomorrow.) Or you could not have the Heppenheim convention be limited to elected representatives. Or... Many options from 1847 really. With Hecker on the barricades, you are right, there is very little we can save, and his attempt at a revolution within the revolution had very little chances. Hecker was probably one of the greatest speakers and most charismatic politicians the Left had at the time. His emigration was a great loss to the left wing of 1848.
von Gagern? maybe together with Ignaz von Dollinger, who also was a delegate? Incidentally, von Dollinger is a person of interest for the future development of the TL.
Döllinger is an interesting person, but I don't know if he's the right guy for the role you are looking for. He was really between all seats (that is a German proverb - sitting on the fence? I don't know the English translation...) - a zealous Catholic critical of what Pope Pius would turn into, a political Catholic but outside of the Pious Associations in which German political Catholicism began to organise itself; involved in anti-monarchical protests with radical students in Munich, but sitting with the centre in Frankfurt... He did have some connections, but he was not a leader whom anybody would listen to to such an extent that they would be willing to make compromises with the political opponent.

A less antagonised von Gagern could pursue more actively to build bridges, yes. But his agenda was truly and decidedly right-wing liberal, so he would have to make long strides - or else his opponents would have to - to make this work.

Could you suggest someone on the radical side who might be amenable for a compromise?
Ludwig Bamberger would be a person of authority on the Left who was willing to compromise, and who had opposed Hecker's revolt as futile and detrimental to the Revolution. But in 1848 in Germany, even on the Left, the charisma and outreach of a Jew would probably still be slightly limited.

Better to find a way to keep the strands together pre-1848... and have people like Hecker, Bamberger, Fröbel and Blum calm each other in some way. (Or else realise from the beginning how divided they really were among themselves on so many topics, so that if they wanted any chance at all to influence the fate of the nation, they would have to accomodate...)
 
@Salvador79
Thanks for a very interesting and fact-filled post.
I am starting to understand the problem of Baden: the liberal-moderates had already what they really wanted at home, since they got a Constitution in 1818 (how wide was the franchise, though?), and did not feel any urge to address the demands of the lowest classes. However, the situation was pretty similar in Belgium (actually, their constitution was even more recent and liberal and their industrialization was more advanced), but the Belgian government felt the need of concessions and they were given very early, which defused the anger at the government. When the Belgian republicans expatriated in France tried to invade, the situation was handled pretty easily (the French government actually transported the Belgian expats by train to the border - they wanted to get rid of them from Paris - but at the same time they gave a head up to Bruxelles and the train didn't stop before the border but just after it, which made easier for the Belgians to handle the thing). IIRC, the same warning was also given to Baden, but was not handled in the same efficient way. In addition to this, it is true that no one would anticipate a European-wide eruption of insurrections, but the 1840s were called "the hungry forties" for a reason: there was a major slump in the economy, which came on top of the social disruptions caused by industrialization, and the harvests of '46 and '47 were very poor due to bad weather increasing the cost of basic foodstuff. It is certainly easier to see the trend with 20/20 hindsight, but the signs were already there. Even on the political side there were huge stresses which were coming to the surface: Chartists in England, a huge number of political "banquets" in France, insurrections in Italy, unrest in Bohemia and Moravia, the Tarnow massacres in Galicia. Not to mention the election of a "liberal" Pope, which had a huge impact in Italy, but must certainly have had repercussions also in other Catholic nations (like Baden and Bavaria). Let's go back to Belgium: the speed with which the government reacted (and not just by breaking riots) says to me that someone had smelled the smoke, even if the flames were not yet visible. The prosecution of the Offenburgers looks to me a very poor move for a government that was at least notionally a constitutional one. The moderate liberals were certainly guilty of political myopia, but also the republican radicals were crazy thinking to launch an insurrection with such poor numbers (which were pretty obvious beforehand, since there had been the two conventions just a few months before). The other puzzling thing is why they felt the need to launch an insurrection so early. The situation was still very unsettled everywhere, and there was no need to choose the nuclear option when there was still the possibility of a political debate. Even in Paris, the radicals took to the streets only in mid June.

Anyway, we would certainly welcome a PM with your suggestions, but I wouldn't want to have a separate POD in Baden (or in Germany) before the second half of 1847 (when it can be reasonably justified by the second bad harvest and the economic slump).
Cheers.
 
@Salvador79
Thanks for a very interesting and fact-filled post.
I am starting to understand the problem of Baden: the liberal-moderates had already what they really wanted at home, since they got a Constitution in 1818 (how wide was the franchise, though?)
It enfranchised almost 17 % of the population. Which would have been way more than the outcome of the Belgian reforms of 1848, if I am correctly informed.
, and did not feel any urge to address the demands of the lowest classes. However, the situation was pretty similar in Belgium (actually, their constitution was even more recent and liberal and their industrialization was more advanced), but the Belgian government felt the need of concessions and they were given very early, which defused the anger at the government.
I was not aware of that. Can you elaborate more on the Belgian reforms IOTL (and ITTL if you've scheduled them already)? From what I've read, the tax requirements were equalised between town and countryside, which benefitted the Liberals - and I can see why that appeased the liberals -, but I haven't found anything that would have helped the masses of paupers?

But, yes: That was exactly the problem. The Liberals wanted German national unity, and political representation, and constitutional rights, but they were aware that over the past couple of economically bad years, a lot of desperation had built up among the labouring classes in both town and countryside, and that all sorts of socialist / communist / anarchist solutions to this problem were being articulated, which they did not like in the slightest. Also, the majority of 1848ers, including liberals, was painfully aware of the loyalty of the armed forces to their monarchs (mostly), and so they sought a solution WITH the princes and monarchs both because they hoped this would not make it necessary for them to shed their own blood in a liberation struggle, and at the same time because they hoped this military would shed, if push came to shove and somebody tried to pull off a communist Robespierre, the military forces of the Bund would not hesitate to shed the blood of workers and landless peasants.

Also, Baden is neighboring Switzerland, and there's always been economic and social contact with the South, so the Swiss construction of a federal parliamentary state in 1847 was something Badenians of all stripes were very aware of (as well as the Sonderbundkrieg related to it).
When the Belgian republicans expatriated in France tried to invade, the situation was handled pretty easily (the French government actually transported the Belgian expats by train to the border - they wanted to get rid of them from Paris - but at the same time they gave a head up to Bruxelles and the train didn't stop before the border but just after it, which made easier for the Belgians to handle the thing).
Hm, I also heard that there were French magistrates equipping the Belgian Legion with weaponry, though... and there was Risquons-tout... but yes, the Belgian Army got it all under control. As did the Bundesheer, really. The German Democratic Legion was intercepted easily. Hecker, on the other hand, did not come from the West, but started in Constance in the South.
IIRC, the same warning was also given to Baden, but was not handled in the same efficient way. In addition to this, it is true that no one would anticipate a European-wide eruption of insurrections, but the 1840s were called "the hungry forties" for a reason: there was a major slump in the economy, which came on top of the social disruptions caused by industrialization, and the harvests of '46 and '47 were very poor due to bad weather increasing the cost of basic foodstuff. It is certainly easier to see the trend with 20/20 hindsight, but the signs were already there. Even on the political side there were huge stresses which were coming to the surface: Chartists in England, a huge number of political "banquets" in France, insurrections in Italy, unrest in Bohemia and Moravia, the Tarnow massacres in Galicia. Not to mention the election of a "liberal" Pope, which had a huge impact in Italy, but must certainly have had repercussions also in other Catholic nations (like Baden and Bavaria). Let's go back to Belgium: the speed with which the government reacted (and not just by breaking riots) says to me that someone had smelled the smoke, even if the flames were not yet visible. The prosecution of the Offenburgers looks to me a very poor move for a government that was at least notionally a constitutional one. The moderate liberals were certainly guilty of political myopia, but also the republican radicals were crazy thinking to launch an insurrection with such poor numbers (which were pretty obvious beforehand, since there had been the two conventions just a few months before).
Yes, it's weird why they went for the nuclear option without much hope to prevail - as we think now, with hindsight.
I think the reason was that Hecker knew how much he appealed to the populace, that he felt personally betrayed (see my PM in the next hour), and that he and the other rebels hoped for a "Bastille momentum". And indeed there was, to some extent, one. Some 50 people started in Konstanz, and a few days and a few villages and small towns later, they were already 1,200. Hecker was not a military genius for sure (at least not at this point in time, I don't know about his performance in the US Civil War, where he served for the North like many German forty-eighters), or else he would have been aware that the numbers he needed he could only muster in the North... which is where, I think, he hoped to get, together with Herwegh. I don't think Hecker's idea was to single-handedly win a civil war in Germany with 1,200 Badenians. He wanted to "rouse the masses" to such an extent as to force a change of course by Vorparlament and provisional governments. What could that have meant? E.g. a change in the rules for the elections which were scheduled for later in the month, e.g. to make direct instead of indirect election mandatory in all member states, or to drop the unclear qualification of "Selbständigkeit", which some member states interpreted more restrictively than others - and, most importantly, to start the arming of the populace (the build-up of a "Volksheer") immediately in order for the Constituante to be able to base itself on a powerbase of its own. Maybe he was also under the illusion that the Bund would not crack down on them. I don't know.
The other puzzling thing is why they felt the need to launch an insurrection so early. The situation was still very unsettled everywhere, and there was no need to choose the nuclear option when there was still the possibility of a political debate. Even in Paris, the radicals took to the streets only in mid June.
Yes, but in Paris, radicals like Blanc were in the government.
 
As somebody who has always had something of an interest in the roads not taken during Italy's 19th century, I'm enjoying this a lot. Keep up the good work, folks!
Thanks a lot!!! And... Benvenuto a Bordo! We really appreciate your support, that means a lot to us.
 
I agree. Well, technically you do have an early PoD in this TL. Therefore, it would not be utterly implausible - but it would need an explanation, for sure - to prevent such an early split. Baden played a huge role in the build-up to the Revolution - not just because it was geographically close to France, but also because industrialisation had made some progress here already, especially in Northern Baden, and, most importantly, because Baden had one of the most liberal constitutions of the entire Bund, with a relatively free press and a lively parliament. The schism took its roots here. It clearly showed in 1847 already, when the radical democrats had met and voted on a political programme in Offenburg, while the moderate liberals met in Heppenheim a month later. The Offenburgers were, then, judicially persecuted for high treason (so much for Baden's liberalism...), so they were organizationally hampered in a crucial moment; the Heppenheim convention showed massive personal continuity with an early-1848 convention in Heidelberg, from where the call for a Vorparlament came (also inspired by articles from Bassermann and other Badenian liberals who called for a German-wide directly elected parliament). So, the marginlization of the radical democrats was something that the liberals certainly did on purpose, but it was also, at the same time, an outcome of a certain continuity.

If you want to mend the schisms among the German revolutionaries somewhat - I hear my teenage Marxist self scream: "Futile! The class antagonism wanted out, Germany was developed enough for its bourgeoisie to have become anti-revolutionary!" -, there are tons of ways to tweak factors which influenced the political environment in which the build-up to 1848 occurred. Not having the liberal constitution in Baden is probably a bit too heavy for your taste? (Though I think there might be a way to get there - and one which has other interesting potentials, yet would not necessariy jeopardise the recognisability of the German political landscape... I can PM you two about it tomorrow.) Or you could not have the Heppenheim convention be limited to elected representatives. Or... Many options from 1847 really. With Hecker on the barricades, you are right, there is very little we can save, and his attempt at a revolution within the revolution had very little chances. Hecker was probably one of the greatest speakers and most charismatic politicians the Left had at the time. His emigration was a great loss to the left wing of 1848.

Döllinger is an interesting person, but I don't know if he's the right guy for the role you are looking for. He was really between all seats (that is a German proverb - sitting on the fence? I don't know the English translation...) - a zealous Catholic critical of what Pope Pius would turn into, a political Catholic but outside of the Pious Associations in which German political Catholicism began to organise itself; involved in anti-monarchical protests with radical students in Munich, but sitting with the centre in Frankfurt... He did have some connections, but he was not a leader whom anybody would listen to to such an extent that they would be willing to make compromises with the political opponent.

A less antagonised von Gagern could pursue more actively to build bridges, yes. But his agenda was truly and decidedly right-wing liberal, so he would have to make long strides - or else his opponents would have to - to make this work.


Ludwig Bamberger would be a person of authority on the Left who was willing to compromise, and who had opposed Hecker's revolt as futile and detrimental to the Revolution. But in 1848 in Germany, even on the Left, the charisma and outreach of a Jew would probably still be slightly limited.

Better to find a way to keep the strands together pre-1848... and have people like Hecker, Bamberger, Fröbel and Blum calm each other in some way. (Or else realise from the beginning how divided they really were among themselves on so many topics, so that if they wanted any chance at all to influence the fate of the nation, they would have to accomodate...)
It enfranchised almost 17 % of the population. Which would have been way more than the outcome of the Belgian reforms of 1848, if I am correctly informed.

I was not aware of that. Can you elaborate more on the Belgian reforms IOTL (and ITTL if you've scheduled them already)? From what I've read, the tax requirements were equalised between town and countryside, which benefitted the Liberals - and I can see why that appeased the liberals -, but I haven't found anything that would have helped the masses of paupers?

But, yes: That was exactly the problem. The Liberals wanted German national unity, and political representation, and constitutional rights, but they were aware that over the past couple of economically bad years, a lot of desperation had built up among the labouring classes in both town and countryside, and that all sorts of socialist / communist / anarchist solutions to this problem were being articulated, which they did not like in the slightest. Also, the majority of 1848ers, including liberals, was painfully aware of the loyalty of the armed forces to their monarchs (mostly), and so they sought a solution WITH the princes and monarchs both because they hoped this would not make it necessary for them to shed their own blood in a liberation struggle, and at the same time because they hoped this military would shed, if push came to shove and somebody tried to pull off a communist Robespierre, the military forces of the Bund would not hesitate to shed the blood of workers and landless peasants.

Also, Baden is neighboring Switzerland, and there's always been economic and social contact with the South, so the Swiss construction of a federal parliamentary state in 1847 was something Badenians of all stripes were very aware of (as well as the Sonderbundkrieg related to it).

Hm, I also heard that there were French magistrates equipping the Belgian Legion with weaponry, though... and there was Risquons-tout... but yes, the Belgian Army got it all under control. As did the Bundesheer, really. The German Democratic Legion was intercepted easily. Hecker, on the other hand, did not come from the West, but started in Constance in the South.

Yes, it's weird why they went for the nuclear option without much hope to prevail - as we think now, with hindsight.
I think the reason was that Hecker knew how much he appealed to the populace, that he felt personally betrayed (see my PM in the next hour), and that he and the other rebels hoped for a "Bastille momentum". And indeed there was, to some extent, one. Some 50 people started in Konstanz, and a few days and a few villages and small towns later, they were already 1,200. Hecker was not a military genius for sure (at least not at this point in time, I don't know about his performance in the US Civil War, where he served for the North like many German forty-eighters), or else he would have been aware that the numbers he needed he could only muster in the North... which is where, I think, he hoped to get, together with Herwegh. I don't think Hecker's idea was to single-handedly win a civil war in Germany with 1,200 Badenians. He wanted to "rouse the masses" to such an extent as to force a change of course by Vorparlament and provisional governments. What could that have meant? E.g. a change in the rules for the elections which were scheduled for later in the month, e.g. to make direct instead of indirect election mandatory in all member states, or to drop the unclear qualification of "Selbständigkeit", which some member states interpreted more restrictively than others - and, most importantly, to start the arming of the populace (the build-up of a "Volksheer") immediately in order for the Constituante to be able to base itself on a powerbase of its own. Maybe he was also under the illusion that the Bund would not crack down on them. I don't know.

Yes, but in Paris, radicals like Blanc were in the government.
Thanks a lot! Loving your info and insights!
 
Narrative Interlude #41: Hic Manebimus Optime
Hic Manebimus Optime
Verona, 10 April 1848 - Evening


Prince Ferdinando had called for a General Staff Meeting in the Salon of Tapestries in Castelvecchio. There were a few new officers attending: Gen. Manfredo Fanti (1) and Colonel Enrico Cialdini (2), who had recently joined the Sardinian army, Gen, Federico Millet d'Arvillars (3), who had proven his mettle t the battle of Goito, Gen. Cesare de Laugier (4), the commander of the regulars from Tuscany.
General Menabrea, Admiral Graziani and Colonel Montanelli were also attending, together with the officers permanently detailed to the General Staff.
"Gentlemen, welcome to Verona: signifer, statue signum, hic manebimus optime. (5)" Ferdinando was in high spirits, a whimsical smile on his lips "Don't be surprised by my words: I know that the proclamation to the Veronese has puzzled some of you, but now I can disclose what our intentions are. The delegates of the various states which are now joined in the Italian Confederation have agreed that a Confederal Capital should be chosen, and that the city and its hinterland should not be part of any state, but subject only to Confederal law: a Confederal District, if you like. Why Verona? First of all, for its symbolic value: Verona has been freed by Confederal armies, and our presence here means that the Austrians have been expelled from the last city they held in mainland Italy. Second, geography: Verona lies midway between Milan and Venice, and is on the main Italian railway, from Venice to Milan. It is beautifully placed to be the main base of the Confederation army, protecting the road to the Brenner Pass, and by railway or water ways troops, artillery and supplies can be easily transported to the border of Friuli, to react against any Austrian aggression in the future, but also to Piedmont's western border should France display any unfriendly intention. In a few years, Verona will also be connected to Genoa, to Bologna, to Livorno: the railways will change the world, and our future capital should take this into account. The people of Verona and the hinterland must have certainly their say, but I am confident that the benefits of this proposal will be understood and accepted "

There was a look of surprise on many faces, although Menabrea, Graziani and De Laugier were certainly aware of the political plans being discussed. Then Ferdinando continued:

"As you are aware, I intend to carry on the investigation on atrocities which may have been committed in Verona: ugly rumors have been floating around, and have been reported to our troops by a few people who managed to leave the city. Verona will remain under military administration until the plebiscite and the elections scheduled for one month from now. In the meantime, I will appoint a civilian commission to investigate: all military personnel will support the investigation, and will report any information they may receive from the civilian population. If the reports of these atrocities will be confirmed, a court martial will be empaneled and all convicted accused will be punished. The articles of surrender were pretty clear, as I pointed out to prince Schwarzenberg today."

Any trace of smile was gone from Ferdinando's lips, and his eyes were very cold.

"Let's go back to military issues, though. I anticipate that Gen. D'Orleans should have arrived on the Isonzo by now: all reports we received confirm that the reinforcements have been making good progress. The next objective for our troops is to take Monfalcone, and secure a port where supplies can be delivered. Do you have any information from your navy, Admiral Graziani?"

"A flotilla of 5 brigantines and 2 gunboats have been sent to the area. They will blockade the coast, and get in touch with our troops. I do not anticipate any difficulty on either task. Once contact is made, the naval units will coordinate with the army.

"That is good to hear. Barges with supplies have already been sent from Mantua: as soon as Monfalcone is in our hands, they can be sent there by sea. Now that Verona has been taken, I am also going to send a siege train: general Menabrea, it will be up to you to coordinate with admiral Graziani: barges from here to the mouth of Adige, and then by ship to Monfalcone.
Let's however move to future operations in the Adriatic, though.
The situation in Northern Dalmatia is stable, therefore I am considering changing the mix of the troops there. Gen. Fanti, you will go there with two brigades of regular infantry, and will replace Gen. La Marmora as a military commander. Have a look at the situation there, and let me have your suggestions. It would be good if you can release the Roman volunteers, who might be needed at home. I do not anticipate any offensive action from Dalmatia: just make sure the defensive positions in the north are secure and patrol the interior up to the Ottoman border.
The time has come to look at Istria, and gen. La Marmora with his Bersaglieri may have a role to play there.
The General Staff has worked out a plan which proposes landings in Parenzo and Rovigno, but more information on the strength of Austrian troops in Istria are required, as well as some good maps of the region: another job for you, Admiral Graziani. Once we have secured a bridgehead on the coast, we will be ready to move towards Pola in the south or towards Capodistria in the north. Or possibly on both, depending on how well goes the war on the Isonzo.
Gen. Meret, you will have two brigades of regular infantry, with regimental artillery and sappers. No cavalry, bur gen. De Laugier will join the operation with a brigade of Tuscan Regulars, again with artillery and sappers. Gen. La Marmora will also be available with his Bersaglieri. Please coordinate with Gen. Menabrea and admiral Graziani. and start planning the move to Venice.
I want you there in one week's time, it shouldn't be hard using the railway. Tentatively, I would like to have the landings in 10-12 days' time, assuming that enough information on enemy strength in Istria is made available.
I want also to make some progress in Trentino: I am quite disappointed by the passivity of gen. Alfonso La Marmora. Colonel Cialdini: I will give you 2 regiments of regulars and one regiment of bersaglieri, and I will write to La Marmora to give you another 2 regiments of regulars. Your task is to go toward Merano, from the west, avoiding the narrows of Salorno. Be cautious and always scout carefully, the Austrian jaegers are quite effective at ambush. I will however expect some progress on that front too. Gen. Fanti has spoken well of your experience in Spain, and I am confident you will not disappoint me.
Last thing: the squadron of Sardinian ships has left Genoa today, on the morning tide: they should be in Palermo in 3 days, including a stop-over in Sardinia. The navy will also be escorting a steamship carrying a training mission for the Sicilian army, some artillery, and supplies.



Footnotes
  1. Manfredo Fanti was born in Carpi in 1808. After his participation to the insurrections of 1831, he went in exile to Spain, where he fought with distinction against the Carlists. In 1848 he came back to Italy and enrolled in the Sardinian army.​
  2. Enrico Cialdini was born in Castelvetro, near Modena, in 1811. After the insurrections of 1831, he went in exile to France, Portugal and finally Spain, where he fought against the Carlists under Fanti. He followed Fanti, returning to Italy and joining the Sardinian army in 1848.​
  3. Federico Millet D'Arvillars was born in Chambey (Savoy) in 1788. He spent his life in the Sardinian army, becoming Major General and gave good proof of himself leading his division in the attack against the bridge of Goito.​
  4. Cesare De Laugier was born in Portoferraio in 1789, of a noble Lorenaise family who had moved to Tuscany following Duke Francis I of Lorraine. He fought under Napoleon, and later under Murat in 1815. Same as IOTL, he is the commander of the Tuscan regulars deployed against the Austrians.​
  5. "Standard-bearer, plant your standard: here we will stay best". It's taken from the 5th book of Livius' History of Rome: after the invasion of Gauls, the Senate was debating if they should rebuild Rome or move to Veius. During the discussion, a centurion halted his maniple near the Curia Hostilia with those words. Furius Camillus took them as an omen, and by an impassionate speech convinced the Senate to stay in Rome.​
Made in @LordKalvan
 

Arrix85

Donor
That's wild (in a good way!). Won't the more southern states complain in time?

Guess now we know one more options the Veronese have ;)
 
It enfranchised almost 17 % of the population. Which would have been way more than the outcome of the Belgian reforms of 1848, if I am correctly informed.

I was not aware of that. Can you elaborate more on the Belgian reforms IOTL (and ITTL if you've scheduled them already)? From what I've read, the tax requirements were equalised between town and countryside, which benefitted the Liberals - and I can see why that appeased the liberals -, but I haven't found anything that would have helped the masses of paupers?

But, yes: That was exactly the problem. The Liberals wanted German national unity, and political representation, and constitutional rights, but they were aware that over the past couple of economically bad years, a lot of desperation had built up among the labouring classes in both town and countryside, and that all sorts of socialist / communist / anarchist solutions to this problem were being articulated, which they did not like in the slightest. Also, the majority of 1848ers, including liberals, was painfully aware of the loyalty of the armed forces to their monarchs (mostly), and so they sought a solution WITH the princes and monarchs both because they hoped this would not make it necessary for them to shed their own blood in a liberation struggle, and at the same time because they hoped this military would shed, if push came to shove and somebody tried to pull off a communist Robespierre, the military forces of the Bund would not hesitate to shed the blood of workers and landless peasants.

Also, Baden is neighboring Switzerland, and there's always been economic and social contact with the South, so the Swiss construction of a federal parliamentary state in 1847 was something Badenians of all stripes were very aware of (as well as the Sonderbundkrieg related to it).

Hm, I also heard that there were French magistrates equipping the Belgian Legion with weaponry, though... and there was Risquons-tout... but yes, the Belgian Army got it all under control. As did the Bundesheer, really. The German Democratic Legion was intercepted easily. Hecker, on the other hand, did not come from the West, but started in Constance in the South.

Yes, it's weird why they went for the nuclear option without much hope to prevail - as we think now, with hindsight.
I think the reason was that Hecker knew how much he appealed to the populace, that he felt personally betrayed (see my PM in the next hour), and that he and the other rebels hoped for a "Bastille momentum". And indeed there was, to some extent, one. Some 50 people started in Konstanz, and a few days and a few villages and small towns later, they were already 1,200. Hecker was not a military genius for sure (at least not at this point in time, I don't know about his performance in the US Civil War, where he served for the North like many German forty-eighters), or else he would have been aware that the numbers he needed he could only muster in the North... which is where, I think, he hoped to get, together with Herwegh. I don't think Hecker's idea was to single-handedly win a civil war in Germany with 1,200 Badenians. He wanted to "rouse the masses" to such an extent as to force a change of course by Vorparlament and provisional governments. What could that have meant? E.g. a change in the rules for the elections which were scheduled for later in the month, e.g. to make direct instead of indirect election mandatory in all member states, or to drop the unclear qualification of "Selbständigkeit", which some member states interpreted more restrictively than others - and, most importantly, to start the arming of the populace (the build-up of a "Volksheer") immediately in order for the Constituante to be able to base itself on a powerbase of its own. Maybe he was also under the illusion that the Bund would not crack down on them. I don't know.

Yes, but in Paris, radicals like Blanc were in the government.
Great post, I see I will have to digest it a bit.
If you don't mind, I will reply by PM, in order not to clog the TL thread
 
That's wild (in a good way!). Won't the more southern states complain in time?

Guess now we know one more options the Veronese have ;)
I suppose we managed to pull a rabbit out of an empty hat, didn't we? ;)

As far as the Southern States, there are none of them in the Confederation (for now ;);)) with the only exception of Sicily (which is not going to complain).
Don't forget that the peninsula is going to become a Confederation, not a unitary state: the States will be self-governing (within the boundaries of the Confederal Constitution), and will keep all their powers except for what they have agreed to transfer to the Confederation (substantially, foreign relations, army and navy, regulation of interstate commerce, which will include infrastructures crossing state boundaries, a central bank and treasury and a common currency - in a few years).
However, let me ask you a question: where would you place the capital of the Confederation?
A separate Capital District makes a lot of sense for a Confederation (and even for a Federation), and there are no other locations, IMHO, more suitable than Verona (for the reasons that Ferdinando exposed, but also because by 1848 the Austrian government had already purchased very wide swaths of territory around Verona, which was intended to be used to build a very strong fortress: all this land obviously becomes property of the Confederal government, and can be put to a better use).

The plebiscite will not feature multiple choices, just a YES/NO answer to a simple question: "Do you want Verona and its hinterland to become the Capital District of the Italian Confederation?".
 

Arrix85

Donor
I suppose we managed to pull a rabbit out of an empty hat, didn't we? ;)

As far as the Southern States, there are none of them in the Confederation (for now ;);)) with the only exception of Sicily (which is not going to complain).
Don't forget that the peninsula is going to become a Confederation, not a unitary state: the States will be self-governing (within the boundaries of the Confederal Constitution), and will keep all their powers except for what they have agreed to transfer to the Confederation (substantially, foreign relations, army and navy, regulation of interstate commerce, which will include infrastructures crossing state boundaries, a central bank and treasury and a common currency - in a few years).
However, let me ask you a question: where would you place the capital of the Confederation?
A separate Capital District makes a lot of sense for a Confederation (and even for a Federation), and there are no other locations, IMHO, more suitable than Verona (for the reasons that Ferdinando exposed, but also because by 1848 the Austrian government had already purchased very wide swaths of territory around Verona, which was intended to be used to build a very strong fortress: all this land obviously becomes property of the Confederal government, and can be put to a better use).

The plebiscite will not feature multiple choices, just a YES/NO answer to a simple question: "Do you want Verona and its hinterland to become the Capital District of the Italian Confederation?"
Oh, no. Don't get me wrong, the position makes perfect sense (I wasn't really considering the Romans and Neapolitans can really complain right now and It's way better for faster communications with central Europe, which will be honestly the biggest Italian worry).

That's such an hard question... not!:cool:
 
Verona as Italy's capital? Now that's a unique take. :p

Too northern, maybe - the ideal, would be (for now) a city in the northern reaches of the most southern confederal state so far, the Not-Papal-For-Much-Longer States. Ravenna would be a cool choice, due to its past in both the Eastern and Western Roman states, or (once mainland Naples joins) even Assisi, as a nod to Saint Francis (who'd probably want to choke most 19th century Popes with his bare hands) and due to its literally central location.

The fact that it's in the middle of the Apennine mountains would be a feature, not a bug - an obstacle to an excessive accumulation of population and power in the city, something that would fit the capital of a confederation of mostly-sovereign states like a glove.

The most galaxy brained choice would be Corfinio, since it was the capital of the very first league that described itself as Italic. :p
 
Verona as Italy's capital? Now that's a unique take. :p

Too northern, maybe - the ideal, would be (for now) a city in the northern reaches of the most southern confederal state so far, the Not-Papal-For-Much-Longer States. Ravenna would be a cool choice, due to its past in both the Eastern and Western Roman states, or (once mainland Naples joins) even Assisi, as a nod to Saint Francis (who'd probably want to choke most 19th century Popes with his bare hands) and due to its literally central location.

The fact that it's in the middle of the Apennine mountains would be a feature, not a bug - an obstacle to an excessive accumulation of population and power in the city, something that would fit the capital of a confederation of mostly-sovereign states like a glove.

The most galaxy brained choice would be Corfinio, since it was the capital of the very first league that described itself as Italic. :p
I must confess that in my wildest dreams, Corfinium gets re-renamed as Italica and becomes Capital :p Ravenna has certainly the right pedigree, but the reasons that made it Capital in Roman times are long gone. I personally like Verona because of its symbolic value ITTL 1848: close to Goito and Isola della Scala, plus, it is the first city freed by Confederal troops. Now, with Assisi you have really surprised me, as I never thought my hometown as a potential Capital. Certainly, the city would need an extreme makeover to host Parliament and Government, plus an efficient railway net to get there (something that is sorely lacking IOTL, to this day, if I may add9, but that's a cool idea I had not considered...
 
Verona as a capital in modern times is an awesome and original idea.
Another major population centre far in the North of Italy? Or would you say it would lead to significantly smaller Torino, Milano or other big cities of the North?
Also, depending on where the border with Austria is finally going to be drawn, more Italianisation of parts of South Tyrol as it is fairly close by?
 
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