Yes, the Heilige Allianz was a real concept, but Metternich & co. died by the time the German unification became a thingljadw wrote: ↑18 Apr 2022 11:43The Frankfurter Nationalversammlung from 1848 was dominated by the Bildungsbürgertum ( in present terms : intellectuals ) and the Hapsburgers were very hostile to it .Peter89 wrote: ↑18 Apr 2022 10:29The unification of Germans first came up as a political idea on the Frankfurter Nationalversammlung in 1848, thus well before Austria-Hungary came to be in 1867. What actually happened is that the Habsburg-Austrians searched for a way to dominate the new German state. It is questionable whether they wanted to deal with the rebellious borderlands like Transsylvania, Hungary and the Military Frontier. Most likely they would let these provinces go in the same way as Romania gained its independence; a meaningless buffer state. After Königgrätz, the Austrians had to make a deal with the Hungarians, because the Prussian solution (Kleindeutsche Lösung) won. The alliance or hostility towards Russia is irrelevant in this regard; alliances changed all the time, the question was how the power centers should balance out each other.ljadw wrote: ↑18 Apr 2022 10:20There is no proof that Austria ( which did not exist ,as it was Austria-Hungary ) wanted to unify Greater Germany : the Hapsburgs were hostile to German nationalism,as nationalism meant democratisation and wanted to conserve the status quo and some of them wanted to restore the situation from before 1789 . Metternich was a typical example .Peter89 wrote: ↑16 Apr 2022 12:55Not really. There were many plans, but ultimately the Austrians wanted to unify Greater Germany, including the Prussians, while Prussia wanted to leave the Austrians out - Bismarck realized what the guys after WW1 not, namely that there must be a powerhouse in Central Europe that can withstand the Russian aggression.George L Gregory wrote: ↑20 Mar 2022 23:20If one historical event had turned out differently, that is the German war in 1866, then it’s highly likely that the Austrians would have unified Germany and excluded Prussia and thus people would be asking if people like Otto von Bismarck as a Prussian should be classified as a German or not.
And the German powerhouse did not withstand the imaginary Russian aggression, but was a staunch ally of Russia til 1890 .
After 1890 the German nationalism, the German contempt for Slavs,the hostility of the SPD to the Tsar changed the situation, but a very big part of the ruling German class still considered Russia as a natural ally . The same happened in Vienna .
The Hapsburgers searched for a way to dominate the actual German ''state '',not the new one .
The Hapsburgers could not afford the independence of Hungary, as this would be followed by the independence of the Czechs, Croatians, etc .
Their deal with Hungary was not caused by the victory of the Prussian solution, but by their defeats of Königgratz and earlier Magenta .The Russians had saved he Hapsburgers in 1848, but this could not be done a second time .
About the relationship between AH and Russia : both were multicultural states (Austrians were a minority in AH and Russians would become a minority in Russia ) with autocratic rulers,both faced by a growing pressure for democratization and nationalism .
Both were ideological allies and both knew that the disappearance of one of both would result in the disappearance of the other one .
Eventually, both the German Empire and Austria-Hungary opted to retain the monarchy but with a continous strengthening of the Bürgertum and a democratization process. The Prussians also did not democratize the German Empire and they were also quite hostile towards the Bildungsbürgertum, socialism and nationalism; yet they realized that Germany can not be governed without making some concessions for the intelligentsia and the working class. If the Grossdeutsche Lösung prevailed, roughly the same things would take place, except that the Slavic and Hungarian minorities would be treated like the Poles in the German Empire, or they would become buffer states (as they historically have been).