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At the end of the eighteenth century and up to 1814 Germany was under the power of Napoleons French empire Napoleon created the Confederation of the Rhine a conglomeration of the fractured north German states This was the first time that these states had been brought together and as a result a rise in German nationalism began in all the northern states When Napoleon was defeated in the battle of Leipzig by a coalition of Russia Prussia Britain and Austria the Confederation collapsed The Congress of Vienna The defeat of Napoleon brought about the beginning of the Congress of Vienna The Congress was called in order to restore the balance of power in Europe and also to ensure that France could never again expand outside of its original pre-war borders The countries that had participated in the coalition in the battle of Leipzig Russia Prussia Britain and Austria were the major players at the congress Lands that were originally parts of the French empire were doled out to the major powers in a way that would make sure that no power became too large The Grand Duchy of Warsaw was divided between Prussia Russia and Austria but Prussia traded their land in Poland for Saxony from Russia The other powers became nervous about the growing power of Prussia so Prussia under the threat of a coalition against it took only 25 of Saxony thereby keeping the balance of power intact The Congress then created the German Confederation similar to the Confederation of the Rhine which was placed under the administrative power of Austria After the Congress of Vienna the four major powers began the first European Council where they would meet and discuss the keeping of peace in Europe much like the current United Nations Conservatism and the Revolution of 1848 In the period following the Congress of Vienna the liberal ideas that had begun under Napoleons rule were squelched under the Metternich
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