Presentation on theme: "Otto Von Bismarck by Eric Richardson (Axel) “The King reigns but does not govern.” 1815-1898."— Presentation transcript:
Otto Von Bismarck by Eric Richardson (Axel) “The King reigns but does not govern.” 1815-1898
Early Years Otto von Bismarck was born in a small Prussian province, north west of Berlin in 1815. His father was an ex-Prussian military officer who was of the Junker class, which makes up the landowners in Prussia. His mother was a daughter of a wealthy commoner and had a high intellect, which is said to be where Bismarck gained his intelligence. The family had an unusual combination, one of an aristocratic landowner, and the other acknowledgeable scholars, and high state officials. The two would help Bismarck in gaining a high position, but would work at his position well. After he gained his basic education, at 17 he went to college at Friedrich Wilhelm University of Berlin
Early Years He received a doctorate in law, but had early interests in becoming a diplomat. He was only able to gain minor positions for the councils in Potsdam, and Aachen. His work was dull and boring, he had a better time talking to members of high society. Once his mother died, Bismarck moved back to his family's estates in Pomerania. After tending to the family properties, he went back to his family’s main estate and became more active in local politics. While being home he met, and married a noblewoman named Johanna von Puttkamer. Together they would have two sons, and a daughter, also they brought up a young orphan whom Bismarck would call “my Sunday’s Child”
Beginning in Politics Otto von Bismarck was able to fill in for a former political representative of a royalist, in the newly built Land tag, which was the first Prussian Legislature. Bismarck became known as a strong royalist, and an action filled politician. He would defend the action of divine right towards the monarchy. During 1848 Bismarck held firm against the liberal rise in parliament, and once the liberal parties became weak and the parliament became more conservative. Bismarck was noticed and was appointed numerous diplomatic, and political positions, where he was an ambassador of Prussia to Russia, and then France. Before the diplomatic roles, he was appointed head of the Diet that would decide to gain German land, and take it away from Austrian power.
Bismarck's gain in Authority During 1862, Parliament was having difficulty over government reforms, so the king dissolved parliament after parliament, and was considering resigning, and leaving the throne to his son, Fredrick. Bismarck was then appointed Prime Minister of Prussia, to help the situation. Bismarck was able to keep the king on the throne. Bismarck would go to all lengths to get his way, he even threatened his resignation if his action wasn’t put through. Bismarck would then concentrate his authority on consolidating Prussia and expanding its borders.
The Austrian Affair Prussia became allies with Austria in seizing the provinces of Schleswig and Holstein from Denmark, although Bismarck had further plans. With having a booming industry of coal, and the rail way system had been built up to stretch across the Prussian borders, the Army was able to be assembled in record timing. Bismarck used this strength to wage a war, in 1866, with Austria, over a dispute about the newly concord territory. The war was quick and only lasted 7 weeks, where the Prussian army prevailed. Bismarck didn’t hurt Austria by taking money or even much of the country, he was mainly concerned in unifying the Germanic States. Which he then gained diplomatic alliance with Austria once the war was over
The French Affair After the war with Austria, Prussia still didn’t have the southern Germanic states, mainly still because the southern German provinces were mostly Catholic, where the Prussian country was predominantly protestant (Otto himself was a Pietist Lutheran). So Prussia still needed another small war to gain the reputation as a strong country, which would win over the southern Provinces of Germany to unify and join with Prussia. Quickly after Prussia had beat Austria, France sent an ambassador to talk to King Wilhelm of Prussia over the controversy of the Hohenzollern Family not being allowed to become Spain's Autocracy. Bismarck then took the letter which was to be sent to Napoleon the 3 in France. The letter, which was named the Ems telegram, was supposed to have good word from Prussia, instead it was refurbished to provoke Napoleon into waging a war against Prussia. Bismarck was then able to rally support from the southern Germanic Provinces in banding together and uniting against the French aggression. The war took one heavy month of major battles, but after that, the French were ultimately defeated. The French were forced to pay a sum of immense proportion, crippling their governments vaults.
Unifying an Empire France was also forced to give up a large section known as the Alsace and part of Lorraine. Bismarck was against this action, for he felt it would be provoking another war, but the Prussian Generals assured Bismarck that it was in the best interest to the Empire. Bismarck then quickly went to the Germanic states and negotiated a unification to the Prussian country which would create Germany. His negotiations were successful. Bismarck had his unified German Empire. King Wilhelm 1 was then crowned German Emperor in the Hall of mirrors in Versailles, France.
Chancellor of Germany Bismarck was not too interested in colonizing imperially in Africa, but politically there was a push to gain land in a few regions of Africa including Togo, Ghana, and Cameroon. Russia had just won victory over the Ottoman Turks, where Bismarck became concerned with Russian influence in Eastern Europe. He then openly expressed his views that Russia should not gain a large portion of land from the victory. This declaration weakened the bond between Germany and Russia. To secure Germany Bismarck wrote up another alliance between Austria and Germany, which Italy would then join as well, for protection from France. In Foreign policy, Bismarck tried the remainder of his day to not provoke war, but to keep the peace and balance of power in Europe. He knew that a war could happen. “"Bulgaria, that little country between the Danube and the Balkans, is far from being an object of adequate importance… for which to plunge Europe from Moscow to the Pyrenees, and from the North Sea to Palermo, into a war whose issue no man can foresee. At the end of the conflict we should scarcely know why we had fought.“. This quote reminds people of the unknowing which could happen in the Balkans, which later is known as the powder keg of world war one. He also initiated the creation of health, accident, and old age insurance.
Later Years Due to the Death of Wilhelm 1 in 1888, and the short lived sons heir to the throne, Wilhelm the 11 appeared on the Throne. This would disrupt Bismarck's old way of getting his way. The Problem with Wilhelm, was that he was strong minded, unlike Wilhelm the first. Bismarck had no luck in winning Wilhelm’s ideas for Germany, as he was able to with Wilhelm the firsts. Bismarck was asked for his resignation, he was given the title as Duke of Lauenberg as a gift for his accomplishments. Bismarck died in 1898 at the age of 83. On his tomb reads “A true German Servant of the Emperor Wilhelm 1.”
Quotes “The King Reigns but does not govern.” “When you want to fool the world, tell the truth.” “The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decision, but by Iron and Blood.” “People never lie so much as after a hunt, during a war or before an election.” “The main thing is to make history, not to write it.” “A government must not waiver once it has chosen it’s course. It must not look to the left or right but go forward.”
Reference Bismarck, By Edward Crankshaw The Viking Press New York, Copy Right 1981 by Crankshaw www. age-of-the sage.org/historical/biography/otto_von_bismarck.html www. Germannotes.com/hist_bismarck.shtml www. britannica.com/eb/article-9616/Otto-von-Bismarck www. quotes.zaadz.com/Otto_von_Bismarck www. worldofquotes.com/author/Otto-von- Bismarck/1/index.html