Vice And Virtue
Germany – does not exist (yet) The Holy Roman Empire collapsed in 1806 – this was followed by the Napoleonic wars and drastic simplification. Resentment runs high. In 1818 the Prussian inspired customs union (zollverein) began the process of harmonisation. Just now there is a North German Confederation very much dominated by Prussia – no state wants to separate but none want Prussian dominance (sigh)
France – the Bourbons fell in 1830 and the country is now a monarchy under Louis-Philippe d’Orléans – the haute bourgoisie hold real power through parliament. On the left the republicans and red radicals bay for blood again, on the right the Legitimists demand the Bourbon restoration. The poor cry for tax relief and the prisoner galleys still work in the Med – the restored Catholic church hunts Huguenots who fight the Cathars. Localist, separatist with a confusion of loyalties.
Across Europe and beyond the echoes of the Napoleonic war ring on – old structures collapsed or were fatally weakened. An age of indecision and doubt.