Grossdeutschland or Kleindeutschland

After the failure of the Frankfurt Parliament, debate continued on teh best way to unite Germany.

Prussia put forward a plan to unify the German states under Prussian control. The question was whether a united Germany should contain Austria (Grossdeutschland - Greater Germany) or leave it out (Kleindeutschland - Lesser Germany):

  • Prussia argued for exclusion of their rival, Austria
  • Austria refused to agree with the Prussian plan - it would eliminate their influence in German affairs
  • Austria persuaded the Bund's Federal Diet to threaten sanctions against Prussia.
  • In 1850, with Russia supporting Austria, the Prussians backed down.

Another attempt at a unified Germany had failed. By late 1849, the German Princes and the Austrian Emperor were able to reassert military control of their territories and impose their political will over their subjects.