• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To what extent was the contribution of Bismarck to German unification the most important factor?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent was the contribution of Bismarck to German unification the most important factor? Bismarck contributed to the German cause; he encouraged and followed through the making of German unification. However, although he was the most important factor he was not the only factor. There were political movements, economic progress sand changes in the monarchy that also contributed towards German unification. The king was about to abdicate: "I have there for resolved to lay down my crown," the king however did not follow this through. If he did it would have been a complete victory for the liberals. Instead of giving up, he appointed a new chancellor to change things; the chancellor was Otto Von Bismarck. Bismarck was the kings last hope of success. He saved the king from a parliamentary crisis, the king was eternally grateful, from then on took Bismarck's advice, and fully trusted him to run his country In every situation that arose Bismarck assessed it and exploited it to his own means-his aim was to unite Germany as a successful and powerful nation. One example of this was with the Danes. ...read more.

Middle

This was appropriately leaked to the French press. After this event relations between France and Prussia deteriorated. Austria took the Prussians side, again they also had the Italians support. The French had no powerful allies. The final straw went when Bismarck nominated Leopold to take over the Spanish throne; he sent a �50,000 bribe to persuade them. As soon as the French heard about this they sent an ultimatum to the king, the king chose to withdraw Leopold. Later the king was asked to never renew this proposal, he refused and sent Bismarck a telegram informing him of the recent events. Bismarck saw this as an opportunity to begin the war; he shrewdly edited the telegram and leaked it to the press. France declared war on 19 July. The French were easily beaten, they withdrew to metz. They refused the peace treaty because it meant giving up alscace and Lorraine, they fought on. Later a peace treaty was signed at Frankfurt on 10 May. Alsace and Lorraine, �200,000,000 and fortresses were taken away. As well as a humiliating march led by the king through Prussia. ...read more.

Conclusion

The people were united because they all wanted one thing. They fought and received a parliament; this would make them believe they had power- give them a sense of nationalism although the parliament had failed in uniting Germany they had still taken a step forward. The parliament had assessed the situation, found the problem thought of a solution and followed it through. It was only that the king did not want Germany united that the event never took place. This was another link in the chain to unification of Germany. In 1858 King Frederick William was declared insane. His brother was appointed king in 1861; he was King William I. William believed in unification of Germany and he believed Prussia should lead it. This was an essential step in the unification of Prussia. In the process of unification, things were all in motion- changing, new movements happening frequently. This was the century of change in every way. Bismarck was the most important factor contributing to the unification of Germany. He created opportunities and used every situation to its full potential. Without Bismarck the process would have taken a far longer time. However Bismarck was not the only factor the were political and economic movements but Bismarck outweighed these by his lateral think and use of his power. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Reasons for Napoleon's Success (to 1807).

    At the twin-battles of Jena-Auerstadt in 1806 the Prussians, on the move, were surrounded and, worse still, found themselves facing the wrong way as the French attacked and the battle began. The Prussians still operating in accordance with the teachings of Frederick the Great (most of their generals had learnt their craft in his campaigns)

  2. To what extent was Bismarck responsible for German unification?

    This put him in the position of being able to incite war between Prussia and Austria when he felt the Prussian army was strong enough, in order to swing the balance of power in Germany to Prussia's side. After signing his secret treaty with Italy, Bismarck pushed the matter of

  1. To what extent should Bismarck receive credit for the unification of Germany?

    The Italians promised Prussia military support in the case of war with Austria, in exchange for the Austrian territory of Venetia after the defeat of the Austrians. Russia, who was still grateful to Prussia for their military support against the Poles in 1863 agreed to remain neutral in the event of war between Austria and Prussia.

  2. Why did Prussia rather than Austria lead the unification of Germany?

    Tension mounted when a new Spanish government invited a member of the Prussian King's family to take the Spanish crown in 1869. France, appalled at the prospect of the Hohenzollern dynasty at both its east and west borders, managed to stop the candidate from accepting the offer, a candidate who

  1. Hitlers Germany

    The effects of the strain of war, the influence of twelve years of nihilistic National Socialist rule, the shock of defeat, and the tension of occupation combined to bring about a profound moral disintegration and loss of all sense of values.

  2. To what extent was German Unification driven by primarily economic forces?

    unification of Germany because it allows Prussia to ascend to power throughout the 1850's and 60's ultimately resulting in unification. Austria is weak by 1866 because she had a poorly run economy and not enough public income to afford a larger and more modern army.

  1. 'In the context of the period 1715-1815 to what extent were economic factors the ...

    Such changes in society had already affected some countries in Europe, particularly Britain, where the Industrial Revolution and pressure for a voice for the newly-formed middle class brought about great political changes in the form of a decline in autocracy and aristocracy, and a growth in representative democracy.

  2. To what extent was Napoleon's success in Europe to 1807 the consequences of his ...

    Also, Napoleon's army was blessed with a variety of talented commanders and officers. The great military theorist, the prussian, Von Clausewitz wrote 'on war' in 1832. In this he put forward his view that 1793 marked a turning point in the organization of armies and the conduct of war.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work