Well, the OTL median annual growth rate for the population of Greece between 1848 and 1907 was about 1,679%. Of course that includes new territories acquired like Ionian islands in 1864 OTL and most of Thessaly (and a small part of Epirus) in 1881 OTL.
If we assume the same growth rate in this TTL (assuming that the territory added will be roughly the same) and start with a population of 1,31 mil., by using this wonderful tool http://www.metamorphosisalpha.com/ias/population.php
we get a result of 3,498 mil. people by 1907. However, as it has been mentioned in the discussion, the greater prosperity of the country, the enhancements in industry and agriculture, plus some fewer immigration, could result at a growth rate of about 2%, with modest calculations. That would mean a population of 4,213 mil people in 1907, which already makes a big difference. If we go for more swift population increase of 2,2% we will get a population of more than 4,7 mil. by 1907!
That increase could have huge impact for the balance of power in the Balkans . In OTL, at the onset of the Balkan wars in 1912, Greece had a population of around 2,7mil, Bulgaria 4,3 mil and Serbia 2,9 mil. As a result of the lower population and the defeat in the Greco-Turkish war of 1897, Greece was not taken very seriously by Bulgaria and Serbia and it was included in the Balkan Alliance mainly because of its Navy. After the Balkan Wars the population figures were Greece 4,4 mil., Bulgaria 4,4 mil and Serbia 4,5 mil.
However, if the Balkan wars occur ITTL (I think they will, but not in the same manner), Greece could be at least equal to Bulgaria and maybe even more populous! Thus, Greece's role in any Balkan alliance would be much more important.

Leaving aside demographic effects from the cholera epidemic during the Crimean war OTL (notable since it was the SOLE time in a century the Greek quarantine measures broke down... at the only time it was the French controlling Piraeus instead of Greek authorities) and assuming the Ionian islands and Thessaly are annexed on schedule TTL population would be about 1,456,000 in 1861 2,134,000 in 1879 and 2,993,000 in 1896. So call it 3.34-3.62 million depending on emigration by 1912. And of course the earlier new territory is liberated the larger the relative population increase it.
 
So i looked back and have just realised something, combining our constitution,liberal monarch in leopold,growing socialist party,stability,free press and upwards mobility that greece has, wouldn't Karl Marx choose Greece as a viable place to emigrate to.

Edit:hadnt read kaiserreich(and as such didn't know their constitution)(still there is a chance,however small it is,but if marx goes anywhere it will probably be germany)
 
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So i looked back and have just realised something, combining our constitution,liberal monarch in leopold,growing socialist party,stability,free press and upwards mobility that greece has, wouldn't Karl Marx choose Greece as a viable place to emigrate to.

Plot Twist: Instead of Megali Idea, Greece unites the world in socialism revolution

While Greece is a much more attractive place to immigrate to compared to OTL I think Marx will either immigrate to Britain, America or stay in the new united Germany. The America and Germany options allow for butterflies galore.
 
Plot Twist: Instead of Megali Idea, Greece unites the world in socialism revolution

While Greece is a much more attractive place to immigrate to compared to OTL I think Marx will either immigrate to Britain, America or stay in the new united Germany. The America and Germany options allow for butterflies galore.

Marx, Engels and co thought in OTL that the Ottoman empire was the natural ally of the revolution since Russia was supposed to be enemy number one. That said other strands of socialism were anything but incompatible with liberal nationalism in general and the megali idea in particular. Take Hugo and Garibaldi for example.
 
With a much strong, higher population, wealthier Greece is this having on knock off effect on the local economies around Greece/ specifically the ottoman greek provinces around Greece.

Also with a much better greece is this having a knock off effect of increasing greek nationalism in the rest of Greece?
 
I’m not sure where the author is going here , but I believe the megali Greece idea is silly if it involves possessions on Asia Minor. The Turks will never stand for it. I hope the author goes instead for a Greece which has all of European turkey and all the islands. That combined with the effects of an earlier and stronger economy , and stronger trust in government/effective government will make Greece a regional power going forward.

I see the Greece I described having a population of maybe 18-24 million today , and a gdp ppp per capita of around 40-45 k per person (near OTL Spain) which gives an economy size of around 580 billion per year, between Poland and Switzerland or so
 
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I’m not sure where the author is going here , but I believe the megali Greece idea is silly if it involves possessions on Asia Minor. The Turks will never stand for it. I hope the author goes instead for a Greece which has all of European turkey and all the islands. That combined with the effects of an earlier and stronger economy , and stronger trust in government/effective government will make Greece a regional power going forward.
I think the idea is unlikely it not impossible they nearly did a smaller version of that idea otl.
 
I’m not sure where the author is going here , but I believe the megali Greece idea is silly if it involves possessions on Asia Minor. The Turks will never stand for it. I hope the author goes instead for a Greece which has all of European turkey and all the islands. That combined with the effects of an earlier and stronger economy , and stronger trust in government/effective government will make Greece a regional power going forward.

I see the Greece I described having a population of maybe 18-24 million today , and a gdp ppp per capita of around 40-45 k per person (near OTL Spain) which gives an economy size of around 580 billion per year, between Poland and Switzerland or so

Not really, if Ataturk hadn't been around they had a good shot at fufiling the Megali Idea.
 
Not really, if Ataturk hadn't been around they had a good shot at fufiling the Megali Idea.

I agree. If the Greeks were luckier and/or the Turks had worse luck in the Greco-Turkish War we could have seen a modern-day Greek Constantinople, Thrace, Ionia and a decent chuck of the Anatolian coastline along the Aegean Sea and Sea of Marmara.
 
I agree. If the Greeks were luckier and/or the Turks had worse luck in the Greco-Turkish War we could have seen a modern-day Greek Constantinople, Thrace, Ionia and a decent chuck of the Anatolian coastline along the Aegean Sea and Sea of Marmara.

I'm inclined to believe that a 1920 POD is much more likely to create a free city of Constantinople than an outright Greek Constantinople but a Greek Ionia is an entirely different thing to which you can arrive through multiple PODs. But lets not hijack the Earl's thread...
 
I’m not sure where the author is going here , but I believe the megali Greece idea is silly if it involves possessions on Asia Minor. The Turks will never stand for it. I hope the author goes instead for a Greece which has all of European turkey and all the islands. That combined with the effects of an earlier and stronger economy , and stronger trust in government/effective government will make Greece a regional power going forward.

I can see a Greece with all of Turkey's European territory (Constantinople may be included or it's made an independent city-state) and the Ionia region on the Anatolian coast but even then it would be a small slice like the chunk they got OTL after WW1. Anything more would require a much more destructive Ottoman collapse that results in a balkanized Anatolia. A full Megali Idea is not impossible but very unlikely as it would need the Greeks to roll a lot of 20's while the Ottomans/Turks roll 1's.
 
I'm curious about how will TTL Crimean War (if It happens) develop. Given the fact that there is no A-H, and probably independent Hungary and Triune Monarchy won't be powerful enough to pose a threat to Russian aggressiveness, there are less counterbalances available.

Will Greece evolve to become UK proxy that will fight Panslavic expansionism in the Balkans?. I'm eager to read TTL next chapters....
 
I'm curious about how will TTL Crimean War (if It happens) develop. Given the fact that there is no A-H, and probably independent Hungary and Triune Monarchy won't be powerful enough to pose a threat to Russian aggressiveness, there are less counterbalances available.

Will Greece evolve to become UK proxy that will fight Panslavic expansionism in the Balkans?. I'm eager to read TTL next chapters....

I hope that Greece will not endorse any revolutionary movements in Thessaly and in Epirus during the Crimean war (in contrast to what it did in OTL and the punishment it received from UK and France). I believe that Greece can receive the Ionian islands in return for being neutral during the war.
 
I hope that Greece will not endorse any revolutionary movements in Thessaly and in Epirus during the Crimean war (in contrast to what it did in OTL and the punishment it received from UK and France). I believe that Greece can receive the Ionian islands in return for being neutral during the war.

The crimean war will probably not happen like it did historically and greece should endorse some revolutionary movement, there is a good chance it will gain land(or not)

In 1843, he issued a Firman declaring the complete abolition of slavery throughout the Ottoman Empire and the immediate emancipation of all those still in bondage. In 1847, he would begin lifting restrictions on the renovation and rebuilding of old churches and synagogues throughout the Empire. Additionally, enlistment in the Ottoman military was opened to Christians and Jews, although very few, if any actually enlisted. In 1848, the Greek Government and the Church of Greece made an appeal to the Ottoman Sultan requesting his aid in convincing the Patriarch to accept the Autocephaly of the Church from the Patriarchate. After some negotiation, Abdulmejid agreed to intercede on their behalf and encouraged the Patriarch to accept the Church's independence from Constantinople. Sultan Abdulmejid was also an avid supporter of education and would see to the establishment of several hundred schools, universities, libraries, and other places of education and learning across the Empire over the course of his reign. This endeavor also included the loosening of restrictions on Greek investment in the Ottoman Empire, enabling them to build their own schoolhouses for their communities, provided they paid for it from their own coffers. His reforms also attempted to create secular courts that would be open to both Muslim and Christian judges and jurors, he established the Ottoman Postal Service, and he implemented various other land reforms and updates to the Ottoman legal system. Lastly, Sultan Abdulmejid would also go on an extensive diplomatic offensive, in a bid to gain new allies and acquire desperately needed foreign investment for his Empire.

The cause of the war was the rights of orthodox christians in the holy land(and russia wanted a port in the black sea)given the reforms that the empire did russia migth not be able to use them for declaration anymore(that is also why france and russia clashed )

The Independence of the Greeks in 1830 and the two wars with Egypt would not end the antagonism of the French or the Russians, however, as they continued to look upon the Ottoman Empire with lustful ambitions. Russia continued to vie for the Straights, while France desired to carve out an Empire of their own from the Ottoman carcass. To counter these growing threats by the French and the Russians, Abdulmejid expanded upon his father's policy of seeking rapprochement with the British, the Austrians, and the Prussians and to his delight they proved to be incredibly receptive. The Young Sultan presented an attractive face for the Empire, one that was modern, relatively Western in his orientation, and increasingly open to foreign ideas and foreign investors. Military instructors were sent to the Ottoman Empire by the dozen to train their army and navy in the modern art of war, while numerous loans were floated to the Porte to help them with their many projects and initiatives. Abdulmejid also gained the personal approval of various crowned heads across Europe like Queen Victoria, who would frequently send the young Sultan gifts and letters. Surprisingly, however, Sultan Abdulmejid would enjoy what he considered to be an incredibly strong personal relationship with his neighbor King Leopold of Greece.

France will probably go to war with the ottoman empire from what i understand and the information we are given.
France might also seek an alliance with russia since they have great britain,germany and italy on their border.
The only powers that will be against the war will be the uk(i assume they have the same motives as they did otl) ,maybe the germans will intervene as well ,i dont see the austrians intervening given their situation.
So yeah,there is a possibility that greece will gain territory given the relationship she has with russia,since it will weaken the ottomans and russia must be pretty close to greece ittl given ioannis kapodistrias was prime minister for 10 years.
The crimean war will probably be territorial in nature(not that it wasnt). Italy will probably endorse the war since the pope is their leader.
 
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I'm curious about how will TTL Crimean War (if It happens) develop. Given the fact that there is no A-H, and probably independent Hungary and Triune Monarchy won't be powerful enough to pose a threat to Russian aggressiveness, there are less counterbalances available.

Will Greece evolve to become UK proxy that will fight Panslavic expansionism in the Balkans?. I'm eager to read TTL next chapters....

I unfortunately have the feeling we'll all be waiting for quite time for those next chapters
 
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Part 73: Family Matters
Part 73: Family Matters

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From Left to Right: Prince Constantine, Prince Alexander, and Princess Aikaterina of Greece

The Liberal and Nationalist Revolutions of 1848 had plunged much of Europe into chaos and conflict. Some states were cast into prolonged periods of civil wars, others were roused into a patriotic fervor and fought for independence; some would see great states like the Austrian Empire destroyed and new nations like the Federal German Empire and Italian Confederation created. The powerful and prestigious house of Orleans had been deposed from the French throne, while the mighty house of Hapsburg had been greatly humbled by the loss of Hungary and Lombardy. The House of Hohenzollern was pitted into a terrible war against the French in the West and a bloody slog against the Poles in the East. Even the Gendarme of Europe, the great Russian Empire experienced its own share of trouble as the Poles of Congress Poland - along with a number of Lithuanians, Estonians, and Latvians scattered throughout the Baltic provinces of Russia - burst into armed rebellion costing Russia greatly in terms of lives lost and damages incurred.

Other monarchs across Europe experienced their own bouts of trouble with Belgian King Otto of Bavaria losing his throne to a Liberal coup. In Bavaria, King Ludwig and his son, Maximillian would lose Pfalz to German Nationalists and suffer the desolation of Franconia as several months of devastating warfare devastated the once idealic countryside. The Badenese Grand Duke Leopold was deposed in early 1848 only to be reinstalled by years end, albeit with much less power and autonomy than before. Unrest in the Kingdoms of Hanover, Saxony, and Württemberg would force their kings to ratify liberal constitutions which limited their powers and saw their kingdoms admitted to the new German Empire. The Neapolitan House of Bourbon would lose much of Sicily to Italian nationalists and would only regain the island after months of determined campaigning. The Danubian Principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia attempted to throw off the Ottoman and Russian yoke, only to be re-subjugated in a joint invasion by their overlords.

Neither was Great Britain spared from the troubles afflicting the European continent as the British economy teetered on the edge of recession leaving thousands destitute and a terrible famine ravaged the people of the Emerald Isle, resulting in the deaths of many thousands and the flight of many thousands more. At home, the Charterists - long a thorn in Parliament’s side - reached the height of their popularity and power as they held numerous rallies and demonstrations demanding significant reforms to British society and politics. Other concerns emerging across the globe forced the British Empire to direct its resources elsewhere as Persia invaded Afghanistan, the Xhosa attacked British settlers in South Africa, the Eptanesians rebelled against British rule in the Ionian Islands, and the Maltese veered on the edge of revolt themselves. Yet while much of Europe burned with revolutionary fervor or suffered under economic depression or catastrophic famine, the small Mediterranean Kingdom of Greece enjoyed a period of relative peace and prosperity.

Unlike many of its peers and contemporaries across the continent, the Kingdom of Greece had been shielded from much of the anguish and suffering, war and conflict afflicting Europe in 1848 and 1849. While it would certainly experience some angst and unrest, especially in the wake of the Eptanesians’ revolt against continued British rule and the subsequent heavy-handed response by the British authorities, Greece was generally quiet at this time. This peace can generally be attributed to the strong economy of Greece in the mid to late 1840’s as its nascent industry was finally beginning to emerge; Greek shipping effectively dominated commerce in the Eastern Mediterranean, and Greek agriculture was more bountiful than at any time in the past. Moreover, Greece was one of the most politically liberal states in Europe, with a representative legislature, universal suffrage provided to every male citizen of Greece regardless of wealth or social status, and a stern, but fair court system.

In many ways this can be attributed to the people of Greece themselves as they painstakingly rebuilt their country after the destructive Greek War of Independence. Through their tireless efforts over the course of some twenty years, Greece emerged from the desolation of war stronger than before. This miraculous recovery in such a short period of time is testament to the great leadership of Ioannis Kapodistrias, Alexandros, Mavrokordatos, and Ioannis Kolettis among many others. Providing both inspiration and guidance in the development of their country from a provincial backwater of the Ottoman Empire to a modern country on par with the states of Western Europe, these men were instrumental in the rapid recovery of Greece following the revolution. Their ideas of a representative government, a civil society, and a diversified economy would shape the face of Greece for many generations to come. Perhaps of equal importance to men such as Kapodistrias, Kolettis, and Mavrokordatos was the role that King Leopold of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha had played in all of this.

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King Leopold in 1852

Throughout all the many years of his reign, King Leopold’s vision of a revitalized Greece rising from the ashes remained a constant ambition that he worked tirelessly to achieve. Although this ambition was born out of a vain desire to improve his own prestige and power, Leopold's efforts were almost all beneficial to the people. To achieve his dream of a revived Greece, Leopold abandoned any personal misgivings and prejudices he may have had about the leading men of Greece when it came to the selection of his ministers and aides. Leopold was also particularly supportive of innovative and intellectual men with grandiose aspirations and great ideas. So long as they shared his vision and could perform their duties effectively, Leopold cared not whether they were men of low birth or social status when it came to appointment to high office.

Regarding his politics, Leopold generally considered himself to be a conservative man who favored a strong and active monarchy, and yet he would often refrain from openly interfering in the affairs of the Greek Legislature, even when the discourse turned against him. Only when he felt that he or his family’s interests were directly at risk, would Leopold intervene and even then, it was only through influence and negotiation, never threats or coercion. Renowned as a talented orator, Leopold would naturally slide into the role of mediator and compromiser during his time in Greece. Frequently presiding over debates in the Vouli, Leopold would often invite opposing lawmakers to the Royal Palace to wine and dine with him and his family. There, he would discuss politics, philosophy, art, history until he won them over to his side willingly or beat them into submission with his dry diatribes and cyclical debates.

Having survived 15 long years in the rigorous British court, Leopold was no stranger to political intrigues or political discourse. Through his many years in Britain, Leopold had learned to adapt, he knew when to make himself scare, when to defend himself and when to attack his adversaries. He was a naturally cautious man, but he was also incredibly cunning and shrewd, ruthless and ambitious, kind and compassionate. Though he was privately a rather dull and cold person; in public, Leopold presented himself as a proud, vainglorious monarch who retained all the dashing romanticism of his younger years despite approaching his 60th birthday. Most importantly, Leopold provided Greece with a connection to the leading powers of Europe through his familial connections as well as his personal friendships.

Through his kinship to Queen Victoria of Great Britain and Ireland, Leopold provided the Greek Government with a particularly close connection to the United Kingdom during the formative years of the young Greek state. These Coburg bonds were later strengthened following the marriage of Victoria and her cousin Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, largely at the insistence and constant campaigning of their dear uncle. Thanks to these familial ties, Leopold would successfully help negotiate a mutually beneficial trade deal with Britain in 1841 and arrange a successful restructuring of Greece’s foreign debts along fairer terms. Relations between the two states would continue to improve until the late 1840’s when the unfortunate handling of the Eptanesians’ revolt temporarily soured Anglo-Greek relations. However, when talks of transferring the Ionian Islands to Greece began to emerge in the early 1850’s, the bond between Greece and Britain rapidly recovered and would reach new heights hitherto unseen.

King Leopold also held a strong personal relationship with the Russian Empire as he had served in the Leib Guard of the Imperial Russian Army during the Napoleonic Wars commanding a brigade of Empress Marie Feodorovna’s cuirassiers with great valor at Lützen, Kulm, and Leipzig.[1] Through his sister Juliane, Leopold was also the former brother in law to Grand Duke Constantine and a familiar of Tsar Alexander and while his relationship with Tsar Nicholas was not as close as it was with either of Nicholas’ brothers, Leopold still proved more than capable of winning his trust and support and would develop a good rapport with the Russian Emperor.

Most importantly, through his marriage to Princess Marie of Württemberg; the granddaughter of Tsar Paul and niece of Tsar Alexander and Tsar Nicholas, Leopold himself had a direct familial connection to the house of Romanov. Although his marriage with Queen Marie was not particularly affectionate, the two would still get along surprisingly well sharing what was described as a close friendship rather than a romantic love for one another. Still, Marie would faithfully fulfill her duties as Leopold’s wife and sire three children for him, Prince Constantine (Konstantínos) in 1834, Prince Alexander (Aléxandros) in 1836, and Princess Katherine (Aikateríni) in 1838, which would also help tie together the two Orthodox states.

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Queen Marie of Greece (circa 1848)​

The birth of Prince Constantine in 1834 would prove to be incredibly momentous for the Greek people as he provided a clear successor to Leopold, ensuring stability and continuity for another generation. More than that, his very name itself hearkened back to times of great pride and glory for the people of Greece who longed for a return of that past greatness. For King Leopold however, the birth of his first son was both a harmonious and agonizing event, for young Constantine, while initially born hearty and healthy, would soon fall terribly ill making his survival to adulthood anything but a certainty. Leopold would keep constant vigil over his newborn child over for several days, delegating all matters of state and all matters of his house to his adjutants and aides. Finally, after what seemed like months, the illness passed, and young Constantine would quickly recover much to the relief of King Leopold and Queen Marie. Sadly, this great demonstration of fatherly love would not last for long.

As the years progressed and Constantine grew from infant to child and child to young adult, the relationship between father and son sadly deteriorated as Constantine became somewhat of a disappointment for his proud father. Whereas Leopold had once been considered the most handsome man in all of Europe in his youth, capable of winning any woman’s affection and any man’s attention with just his looks alone, Prince Constantine was far more average in appearance.[2] While he was by no means unattractive, his looks left much to be desired; his hazelnut eyes were dull and dark, his chestnut hair was wiry, his ears were slightly too small, and his face was slightly too long. His most prominent feature, however, was a rather large nose which protruded sharply from his face like a bird’s beak, spoiling what was an otherwise unremarkable face.

Complimenting Constantine’s displeasing facial features were a set of gangly long legs and spindly arms which matched perfectly with his relatively weak chest, presenting an alarmingly frail physique for the Prince. Though he would surpass his illustrious father in height during his mid teens, this would only work against him in many ways as it made his gaunt appearance even worse. Many times, when father and son were together, Leopold’s broad shoulders and powerful build made Prince Constantine look downright meek and small in comparison despite being taller than Leopold. Completing his rough appearance were his uniforms and suits which were often creased and ill-fitting despite the best efforts of his many tailors to properly fit them to the Prince, making him appear more like a slovenly schoolboy than a Prince of Greece. Worse of all, however, young Constantine was a shy and socially awkward youth, which was terribly upsetting for the silver-tongued Leopold. While this alone would have been an issue for the incredibly vain and proud King Leopold, his eldest son had several other “deficiencies” which marred his record.

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Prince Constantine of Greece, circa 1852

One particularly notorious blemish would make itself apparent while on a state visit to Britain for the christening of Queen Victoria’s first son, the heir apparent Prince Albert in the Fall of 1845. To celebrate the occasion, King Leopold, Prince Constantine and his brother Prince Alexander were invited to partake in the procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey along with various other crowned heads of state and dignitaries from across the globe. Unfortunately, in the chaos of the royal process, Prince Constantine lost control his little pony and soon found himself thrown from his saddle amid the commotion. Surprisingly, the boy would be unharmed apart from a few minor scrapes, but his father’s pride would be thoroughly bruised as the British press would relentlessly hound the Greek King with story after story of his son’s unfortunate tumble for several days thereafter until representatives of the British Crown stepped in to quiet the clamor. When they returned to Greece several weeks later, King Leopold immediately enlisted the aid of several military instructors to correct his son’s deficiencies in equestrianism. Prince Constantine would eventually improve his skills as a rider, but by then the damage had already been done as the emerging cracks between father and son only deepened further.

Academically, Constantine was rather unremarkable student as well. Although he would never actually fail any of his studies and was a rather bright and intelligent young man in several instances, he generally showed little motivation or inspiration in his studies. Because of this, he had difficultly applying his inherent talents in the classroom, resulting in numerous poor marks and assessments by his instructors. Leopold’s solution to these growing inadequacies would be increased discipline and strictness towards his eldest son.[3] Constantine’s instructors were frequently cycled into and then out of the Royal Household in rapid succession when they failed to make a significant improvement in Constantine’s performance. Under pressure by the King to perform, Constantine’s teachers began working him harder and longer, often going without breaks and sometimes even without meals until his testing improved.

When this inevitably failed to achieve the desired results, his mother, Queen Marie interjected herself into Constantine’s education and thereafter started bringing her son on her charitable ventures across Athens in an effort to help build the young boy’s confidence and poise. Where Leopold’s hard-handed dictates had failed, Marie’s softer approach would show some signs of success as Prince Constantine slowly, but surely began to improve both academically and socially. Still this modest improvement was not enough for King Leopold who continually demanded excellence from his son, and when Constantine inevitably failed to meet his often times impossible expectations, Leopold did not refrain from chastising him. Constantine almost certainly knew his father’s reasoning for this rigorous upbringing, but it would do little to engender any sense of love or loyalty for him as the boy desperately desired a loving father and a supportive friend rather than a cold king and a ruthless instructor. Ultimately, King Leopold would wash his hands of the situation entirely in the Summer of 1852 when he promptly shipped Prince Constantine off to the Hellenic Military Academy following his 18th birthday in the hopes that the military could do what he could not.

Leopold’s relationship with his other son, Prince Alexander was similarly strained like that with Constantine, albeit to a slightly lesser degree as Alexander had several innate advantages over his elder brother. First and foremost, Prince Alexander was considerably more handsome than his elder brother Constantine; with fair blondish-brown hair, striking blue eyes, and many of the same dashing good looks that their father had once had in his own youth. His face was chiseled, with a strong jaw and good features; and in spite of his relative youth (16), he already possessed a relatively powerful, athletic physique. Like his father and brother, Prince Alexander would be remarkably tall for the times, but of the three he was undoubtedly the shortest.

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Prince Alexander (circa 1854)​

Similarly, Prince Alexander was a talented, if somewhat aloof student who did rather well in most of his studies but would also struggle with some subjects more than others on occasion. More worryingly however, he showed little inclination towards politics or martial crafts and would generally drift towards the arts, history and philosophy. Leopold’s desires for capable heirs however, forced this curriculum upon young Alexander despite the boy’s personal tastes and desires. Like his brother Constantine, Prince Alexander was also a relatively quiet young man and generally shied away from speaking at public engagements when he could. Unlike Constantine, however, young Alexander would normally show more confidence than his older brother during his appearances in public and at court and usually made a better impression on most of Leopold’s retainers and advisors when he appeared before them.

Despite Alexander’s advantages over Constantine, Leopold remained equally strict on both his sons. While he was far from cruel or vindictive towards them by the standards of the times, Leopold was rarely affectionate towards Constantine or Alexander either and was not afraid to discipline them for their mistakes. He always demanded excellence from his sons regardless of the circumstances, and when they failed to live up to his lofty expectations, he didn’t refrain from punishing them for their failures. Leopold’s meticulous and often rigorous training of his sons likely stemmed from a misguided desire on his part to secure for them a future in Greece. Having seen the great royal houses of Hapsburg, Orleans, and Wittelsbach overthrown by their people, Leopold endeavored to ensure that his sons were prepared to succeed him when that time inevitably arrived.

Though he was by no means on his deathbed in the early 1850’s, Leopold was no longer the budding image of health and beauty he had once been in his youth. Nothing remained of his famous good looks and suave charms, instead all that remained was a cold old man who was parched rather than aged. His once handsome face was marred by wrinkles, his radiant brown hair had begun to grey and fall out in places, his skin was pale, and his weight had steadily increased over the years. In a vain attempt to combat this decline in his appearance, Leopold resorted to wearing rouge on his cheeks, wigs on his head, and girdles around his waist.[4] He had his eyebrows plucked and his face cleanly shaven despite the times dictating that men of stature grow long beards or mustaches.

Accompanying this decline in his physical appearance was a decline in his health as he occasionally suffered from gout and arthritis and his once brilliant mind was prone to mistakes and missteps. It was clear that even the great King Leopold was a mortal man. Having seen the great houses of Hapsburg, Orleans, and Wittelsbach humbled by their peoples - a development that greatly concerned Leopold – the Greek King resolved to shield his house from that fate. For though the people of Greece were resoundingly in favor of maintaining him as King of Greece, Leopold remained cautious as was his nature. As such he became increasingly committed to securing his legacy by ensuring that his children received the best education and training that he could provide for them. Unfortunately, by doing so he also ensured that their childhoods would be relatively joyless and loveless, with Prince Constantine unfortunately suffering the worst of Leopold’s abuses as he was the eldest and the heir apparent. Prince Alexander was not spared from Leopold’s admonishments either and was often subject to Leopold’s strictness and discipline as well. Only the third of Leopold’s children, Princess Katherine would have what could be described as a normal, happy upbringing.

Whereas Leopold was often cold and distant towards Constantine and Alexander, the relationship between father and daughter was paradoxically close and affectionate. Though the birth of a daughter had initially disappointed the Greek King as he had desired a third son, these feelings quickly faded though as young Katherine would quickly become Leopold’s favorite child and the subject of all his love and adoration. Leopold doted upon his daughter, gifting her anything her heart desired from clothing and jewelry to horses and paintings; no matter the price or the difficulty he acquired it if her heart so desired it.

Despite this excess, Princess Katherine remained an incredibly humble and honest young woman. She was she was generous and kind to all people, regardless of their social status or economic standing and she was wise beyond her years, behaving more like a full-grown woman in her twenties or thirties rather than a girl in her teens. More than that, Katherine was a quick learner and talented student and was considered by many to be the most capable of King Leopold’s children, both in her own time and in modern accounts. But above all she was incredibly beautiful. Despite her young age, Princess Katherine already possessed many indicators of attractivity, her golden-brown hair shined radiantly in the brilliant Hellenic sun, her hazelnut doe eyes were dark little orbs that brilliantly sparkled like gems, and her fair skin gave off an alluring glow of purity and youth.

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Princess Katherine (circa 1854)​

King Leopold plans for Princess Katherine’s own extensive education would be no less thorough than that of her brothers, but unlike Constantine or Alexander she would often excel where they had failed. Having learnt Greek and German as an infant, she was later taught English, French, and Russia which she could read, write, and speak in with great proficiency, in addition to several other languages that she was quite adept with. When Aikaterina was six, she began reading from the Septuagint and New Testament with an un-childlike grace and gravity that greatly impressed the Metropolitan of Athens Neophytos Metaxas despite his initial misgivings. At thirteen, her favorite authors were Plato, Plutarch, and Socrates. Princess Katherine would also maintain a lifelong correspondence with her cousin, Queen Victoria with whom she frequently confided in regarding all matters from dollhouses at the age of eight to romance when she was thirteen to policy and matters of state when she was sixteen.

Despite this stiff upbringing, Princess Katherine had a great love for life and a vibrant love of people. She loved to dance and sing and socialize, and would often elope from the palace with several of her ladies in waiting to tour the city and meet with its inhabitants, to join in the festivities, and share in their sorrows. Her childhood was by no means perfect as her doting father proved to be overly protective of her and limited her ability to travel about the country freely, but she did fair much better than her brothers when it came to their priggish father. This difference in treatment and affection between the Coburg children almost certainly had an impact on young Constantine who was incredibly jealous of the affection his sister received from their father. Despite this jealousy, Constantine held no ill will for her and instead turned his animosity towards Leopold, only furthering the divide between them to the point that Leopold privately considered removing Constantine from the line of succession altogether.

However, for all Leopold’s love for Princess Katherine and his bitter relationship with Prince Constantine, the matter of his succession was a settled matter. Under the Greek Constitution of 1831, the eldest surviving male heir of Leopold of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha would be recognized by the Greek Government as the Diadochos, the heir apparent to the Crown of Greece. Regardless of his opinions of Constantine, Leopold was required by law to name him as his heir. As such, Constantine’s "exile" from the Royal Palace would only be a temporary situation and would soon be called upon to return from the Academy to be formally invested as the Crown Prince of Greece.

Next Time: Diadochos
Author's Note: I recognize that its been over three months since the last update. It certainly wasn't my intention to be gone for this long, but unfortunately life had a way of delaying my attempts to return to this sooner. Now, however, I can definitively say that I am back and will be continuing this timeline until the very end, whenever that may be.

[1] As an extended member of the Russian Imperial family through his sister Juliane’s marriage to Grand Duke Constantine, Leopold was awarded with the rank of Colonel in the Izmaylovsky Regiment when he was only 5 years old. He would later be promoted to Major General in 1802 and Lieutenant General in 1814. Despite being a member of the Imperial Russian Army since childhood, Leopold would only actually fight alongside the Russians following Napoleon’s failed invasion of Russia in 1812 during the War of the Sixth Coalition. Still, he proved to be a relatively talented cavalry commander and was recognized for his bravery and valor.

[2] Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte would remark that young Leopold was the most handsome man to he had seen in the halls of Tuileries Palace. Leopold also allegedly, managed to seduce Napoleon’s stepdaughter Hortense de Beauharnais during his short stay in Paris in 1807, although there was little actual evidence to substantiate this rumor beyond gossip and hearsay at the time.

[3] In OTL, Leopold’s solution to all his children’s deficiencies was increased discipline and strictness. Rather than providing the carrot, he often gave them the stick when they failed. I don’t see this changing ITTL even with the different circumstances and situation as Leopold simply lacked the empathy and compassion needed to be anything more than a disciplinarian at this point in his life.

[4] Leopold would try desperately to preserve his health and beauty, inadvertently creating an unfortunate parody of his youth in the process. Even the most flattering paintings of King Leopold portray him as a rather unattractive old man by the 1850’s, while the less flattering pictures are quite sad to look at.
 
From what I understand of the chapter it seems that prince Constantine is someone who cant utilise his talents because of the circumstances he grew up in,I hope he gets the chance to shine and show the world that he deserves the title of king.
Him being exceptional in finance will actually help greece,since it had several crisis that could be avoided (currant crisis)(bankruptcy 1893)(long depression)
i also see the greek economy exploding with the construction of the suez canal
cant wait to see what you will do with charilaos trikoupis, even though he bankrupted greece,he modernised it as well,in ittl he will probably be able to do much more than he was able to otl(he had to take loans for all the reforms he did otl, since greece has a better economy he might not need them)
 
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