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In What Ways and with What Results Did 19th Century Nationalism?

During the 19th century, nationalistic thoughts began to infiltrate Europe, which eventually lead up to unifications, as well as the First World War. Nationalism began as each ethnicity began to feel a sense of individuality and identity. Nationalism was the start of independence and revolutions, even after the Congress of Vienna, which sought to continue conservative ways. With the rise of nationalism in the 19th, it catalyzed many wars including World War One.

At the beginning of the 19th century, the Congress of Vienna was a reaction to the French Revolution, in which they wanted to preserve the monarchies in Europe as well as conservative ways. Nationalistic ideas were surfacing across Europe however the Congress of Vienna did not prevent the nationalism uprisings of 1848. By combining the Netherlands with Belgium, and continuously not giving Poland it’s freedom, the Congress only furthered the nationalistic movements. Revolutions began to take Europe during the year of 1848, the year of Revolutions.

Up until then, different ethnic groups began to pride themselves in nationalism, and in their identities. Countries such as Poland, Belgium, Italy, and Germany started revolutions in order to gain independence. Each country was fighting for nationalism with their new sense of identity however many of them failed. Nationalism ultimately caused the independence of countries such as Germany and Italy. It encouraged people of each state to think about their ethnicity as well as identity. Even though many states benefited, other states were suppressed and unable to break free.

This is one of the factors that led up to the First World War. As the Ottoman Empire began to decline, it was right in the 19th -20th century, which was the prime time of nationalism. States wanted freedom from their reigning countries due to their national pride, yet the reigning countries were uncooperative. The Balkan areas were under the Austria-Hungary Empire’s rule, yet Serbia wanted to create a new country with states that mostly contained Serbians. Their nationalism became ultra-nationalistic which led to the assassination of the crowned prince of Austria-Hungary.

This was one of the reasons of World War I starting up-nationalism. The seed of nationalism in Europe not only created many new independent nations but also created a sense of identity within states. Without nationalism uprisings in Europe, many of what the world looks like now would not be here and unified countries such as Germany and Italy may still be tiny states instead of a large country. Nationalism shaped Europe’s geographical state, and the course of events that led up to the 20th century.