Sunday, January 18, 2015

German Empire 144

On today's date in 1871, 144 years ago, King Wilhelm I of Prussia (1797-1888) was proclaimed German Emperor in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles, following the Prussian victory over Napoleon III in the Franco-Prussian War. Over the course of the next four decades the newly united Germany would become one of the most dynamic and exciting countries in the world, with more Nobel prizes than Britain, France, and the United States combined, a rapidly growing economy, and a glittering and vibrant culture. Unlike the revolutionary unification of Italy ten years earlier, most of the ancient smaller local monarchies (Hanover being the notable exception)--kingdoms, grand duchies, duchies, and principalities--were allowed to survive and continue to maintain their own courts and constitutions, with the Kingdom of Bavaria even having its own consulates abroad. Today, however, Germany languishes under an illegitimate federal republic, an abomination that forces all localities into its republican Procrustean bed, an artificial and unlovely monstrosity that needlessly cuts today's Germans off from their glorious and colourful monarchical past. The true Germany is not the Republic, nor is it the Nazis or the Communists. The true Germany is the Germany of princes, dukes, kings, and Kaisers, so shamefully and tragically abandoned in 1918! May it rise again and deliver us from the tyrannical banality of republicanism. Es lebe der Kaiser Georg Friedrich Prinz von Preu├čen!