Prussia Stand-In Wanted

Recently I've watched "What if Poland was a Superpower" by Whatifalthist and one of the postulated effects of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth remaining the powerhouse of Eastern Europe was that Prussia would never have the chance to become its own kingdom.

Assuming that had actually happened, what other OTL state, Austria aside, would have had the best odds of managing to fit in Prussia's shoes?
 
One of the keys to alternate history is to remember that you don't need analogues or stand-ins for OTL states and political developments. It could be that nobody fills Prussia's shoes and Germany remains more of a geographic and cultural umbrella than an actual state.

Otherwise, though, some large and potentially influential German states would be Bavaria, Saxony and possibly Brandenburg.
 
Well, I never said they'd have good odds, simply better than smaller states. It probably is Austria or nobody.
I was just thinking out loud. Brandenburg and Saxony could end up in a permanent union and become Prussia in all but name, considering the Brandenburg part of Brandenburg-Prussia was the dominant one in their union.
 
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Yeah, if there not brandenburg, or brandenburg-prussia, there not stand in, history don't work like fiction, if anything either austria centralize or die...and knowing otl history, austria dies and central europe never unites
 
Recently I've watched "What if Poland was a Superpower" by Whatifalthist and one of the postulated effects of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth remaining the powerhouse of Eastern Europe was that Prussia would never have the chance to become its own kingdom.

Assuming that had actually happened, what other OTL state, Austria aside, would have had the best odds of managing to fit in Prussia's shoes?
All depends on the POD. If you go early, it really could be just about any dynasty that manages to have good luck in the marriage and inheritance game.
 
It really depend on the century and that part of Prussia’s history we focus on. Without the rise of Prussia, we would likely have seen a increased consolidation of imperiaal power in the HRE, we could also see Denmark, Saxony or Sweden create a unified German north,
 
Yeah, if there not brandenburg, or brandenburg-prussia, there not stand in, history don't work like fiction, if anything either austria centralize or die...and knowing otl history, austria dies and central europe never unites
Why not Poland? Poland in XVIIth century borders had a chance of becoming great power in it's own right.
 
Why not Poland? Poland in XVIIth century borders had a chance of becoming great power in it's own right.
Poland Self Destruct alone with some Austria and Russia here, here Sweden could took prussian place, again butterflies would make poland die faster or slower, just become an austria vassal as the habsburg wanted it
 
Poland Self Destruct alone with some Austria and Russia here, here Sweden could took prussian place, again butterflies would make poland die faster or slower, just become an austria vassal as the habsburg wanted it
It self-desctructed, yes, but it was by no means inevitable. Habsburgs did not Poland to become Vienna's vassal if they had some plans regarding Poland they were about placing Habsburg on Polish throne, but even if it succeeded it'd make Poland no less independent than Habsburg Spain (actually, Habsburg Poland is one of the ways to do Poland-wank).
 
It self-desctructed, yes, but it was by no means inevitable. Habsburgs did not Poland to become Vienna's vassal if they had some plans regarding Poland they were about placing Habsburg on Polish throne, but even if it succeeded it'd make Poland no less independent than Habsburg Spain (actually, Habsburg Poland is one of the ways to do Poland-wank).
Nope was to be a vassal/sub habsburg kingdom after first partition, but russia was so hungry of poland, the austria and prussians just decided to annex the whole thing, here without one, austria might force a vassalization and stand against russia, with a weakered but still able to do something poland as just have one enemy(russia), than three
 
Nope was to be a vassal/sub habsburg kingdom after first partition, but russia was so hungry of poland, the austria and prussians just decided to annex the whole thing, here without one, austria might force a vassalization and stand against russia, with a weakered but still able to do something poland as just have one enemy(russia), than three
At the time of first partition, Maria Theresia didn't even wanted to participate in it, and Joseph just wanted more land for Austria. I think that depends of the POD, which will curb Prussia if it would be for example 100 years before the partitions we could hardly expect similar geopolitical situation.
 
Since situation we’re discussing is that the Commonwealth becomes a super Power I think we can throw the concept of the partitions our the window.

I agree that Poland is kind of the obvious choice for a Central European power that could fill that power vacuum. They’d likely have to compete heavily with the Scandinavian powers for it though as both will see the Baltic’s and Northeastern Germany as Natural parts of their spheres of influence. At the same time Poland and Russia are Likely jockeying for position in the Steppes. If Austria is looking to centralize the HRE in this world they and Poland could be natural allies, seeking to keep the Scandinavians out of North Germany and Austria having no desire to have a country as large as Russia on its border. Where they might end up bumping heads is North Eastern Germany If Austria tries to centralize the HRE.
 
This really depends on when the PoD is. The second german power after Austria could be anyone for example: Cleves, Saxony, Brandenburg with Cleves, Bavaria, Palatinate with Cleves, united Welf Brunswick-Lüneburg, or maybe even a surviving Burgundy that is Germany oriented.
However without their share of the Jülich-Cleves inheritance and without ducal Prussia Brandenburg remains a poor sandpit and the most profitable thing they have is the money they get through imperial election stipulations. Also people should stop overrating Prussia as it was on par with Saxony and Bavaria before the Congress of Vienna. I mean Friedrich II. was just extremely lucky in the 7 years war. Only at 1815 they truly became a great power - the fifth among the five european great powers.
 
maybe even a surviving Burgundy
This reminds me of a potential contender no one has mentioned yet: the United Provinces. What made Prussia stand out in the beginning was just the results of its military reforms showing, so have the United Provinces end up in more or less the same situation, get involved in the Seven Years War on England's side, properly bribed with the promise of the Austrian Netherlands. Get the Rhineland awarded to the now Kingdom of the Netherlands at the Congress of Wien and you get an even tougher customer than OTL Prussia, since it would have the same capacity for punching above its weight class and more people to fill its army with.
 
One thing to keep in mind is why Austria and Prussia were able to grow to be such powerhouses in Germany: they both had territories outside the HRE that were not influenced by HRE politics and that they could rely on for manpower and support. So to have a third (or in this case in Prussia's absence, a second) big German state, you need one that can lean on non-HRE territories to draw some power from that they can swing around. Some suggestions:
- Sweden that rules key German territories, such as Brandenburg
- A state that rules the Netherlands as well as territories in the Rhineland (Hanover?)
- Bavaria that holds some of Northern Italy
 
Get the Rhineland awarded to the now Kingdom of the Netherlands at the Congress of Wien and you get an even tougher customer than OTL Prussia, since it would have the same capacity for punching above its weight class and more people to fill its army with.
That Kingdom would have fallen apart with the OTL William I at the helm.

You would need Antwerp to either remain Dutch in the first place (best), or to be retaken by the Dutch within the final phase of the Eighty Years' War.
 
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