Frederick III - German Emperor who could have Stopped the World Wars

  • Published on Jan 10, 2019
  • German Empire lost more than 2.5 million during the I World War. The empire was abolished and the country was set on the path to the II World War. However, there was a turning point three decades before, which could have averted this path. This is the tragic, but interesting story of Frederick III and how his death possibly changed the course of World history.
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    The video was made by our friend Oğuz Tunç, while the script was researched and written by Matt Hollis.
    This video was narrated by Officially Devin (
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    Frank Lorenz Müller - Frederick III - Political Culture of Imperial Germany
    Margaret E. Von Poschinger - Life of the Emperor Frederick
    A. R. Allinson - The War Diary of the Emperor Frederick III, (1870-1871)
    Production Music courtesy of Epidemic Sound:
    #Documentary #GermanEmpire #WorldWar

Comments • 1 716

  • Kings and Generals
    Kings and Generals  12 days ago +138

    Hey, guys. Supporting us via patreon is the best way to ensure that we will release more and better videos:

    • Faris Muhammad
      Faris Muhammad 7 days ago

      may i know the title of the music around 01:00? please... i cant find it

    • Kairn Dreamer
      Kairn Dreamer 8 days ago

      +Feanor n And if they didn't prevent the war then they would've actually won the war due to favorable control of territory; nice AU concept.

    • Kairn Dreamer
      Kairn Dreamer 8 days ago

      +Mainul Islam I'm glad that you've learned to form complete sentences at this age. [/sarcasm]

    • Kairn Dreamer
      Kairn Dreamer 8 days ago

      +Merek29 - But the claim was made by K&G, therefore the burden of proof lies upon them and not us.

    • Kings and Generals
      Kings and Generals  8 days ago

      We appreciate it! :-)

  • Alex Crane
    Alex Crane Day ago

    Yea, Frederick III seemed like a pansy.

  • Jonathan Himmes
    Jonathan Himmes Day ago

    The last minutes gave me some unknown strange patriotic feelings ( i guess the music helped). The great history of my country and its characters are always overshadowed by the events of the second world war. I'm not denying the historic importance of WWII, but there is so much more than Nazis and militaristic Prussians. Germany was a center of art, science, the birthplace of democratic socialism (and Marx and Marxism), beautiful romantic Literature... I could go on for hours. It's so sad to see how Germany focused its potential in the wrong direction. Maybe Friedrich couldn't stop the Great War and Prussian militarism, but to imagine that someone would try it ... i dont know... it feels good. Thank you very much for this video! Greetings from the Rhineland.

  • heart Good
    heart Good 2 days ago

    A great King!

  • Kaushik Sainath
    Kaushik Sainath 2 days ago +1

    Great stuff as always.
    The 1974 TV series "Fall of Eagles" does a great job in portraying the lives of the major dynasties in Europe during the 19th Century, especially the familial tensions within the House of Hohenzollern.

    • Kaushik Sainath
      Kaushik Sainath 2 days ago

      +Kings and Generals I should be the one to thank you. Its fun starting a week with your videos :)

    • Kings and Generals
      Kings and Generals  2 days ago +1

      Thank you very much!

  • boahkeinbockmehr
    boahkeinbockmehr 3 days ago

    It's still really weird to me how prussia is so often linked to the nazis and portrayed as a totalitarian restrictive regime, when the sole reason it even did rise to power was their tolerance, acceptance and even aimed invitation of the unwanted of europe. E.g. my eastern prussian family has a lot of french huguenottes and swiss calvinists in it, which were invited by the king and were even allowed to create their own towns with their mothertongue as the official language there as well as granting them to be governed on the basis of the laws of their countries of origin. There is a reason why so many jews fell victims to the nazis, as they had been expelled out of countries like the united kingdom and thus often moved to the hre and later especially into prussia, which grew to power due to the mass of intellectuals and different viewpoints they were able to integrate. It is always weird to me, how much the international view of prussia is still tainted by the views of the most oppressive regimes of the era, that forcefully occupied most of the world and had much more restrictive racist and classist societies.

  • 2serveand2protect
    2serveand2protect 3 days ago

    Very interesting. Honestly I didn't know all this stuff about the fella - I mean - I knew he EXISTED" and that there's been some sort of..."bitching" among the Prussian royal family, but that wasn't unusual... though all the rest I truly didn't know about.

  • BazookaJoe
    BazookaJoe 3 days ago

    It's interesting how both of the liberal heirs of Germany and Austria-Hungary were both killed before they could prevent the causes of the war from happening. Rudolf shot himself over his affair and Frederick died of cancer.

  • kek nation dog
    kek nation dog 4 days ago

    yeah just disregard the fact that churchill said himself that he could have stopped the war at any time and the dozens of peace offers by Germany including sending the vice-fuhrer Rudolf Hess personally to England

  • Archie Ames
    Archie Ames 4 days ago

    First three minutes: Liberal Liberal Liberal

  • Josh C
    Josh C 4 days ago

    Yes there would have been better Anglo-German relationship and perhaps no Russo-French alliance, but the assassination of Ferdinand could have still happened. Austria would have likely still declared war on Serbia, then Russia on Austria, and then Germany on Russia. So i feel a war in the 1910s would have still have happened, just a smaller scale one mainly in central/eastern Europe.

  • TOFKAS01
    TOFKAS01 4 days ago

    To say that there would no great war happended if Frederick III would have survived is a little bit unrealistic, because WW1 didnt had a "one-man-reason". In fact WW1 was a result of the large sociological, economical and national changes during the industrialisation and after the french revolution. But of course it would have been a different history especially for germany if we would have a competent intelectual ruler in that era and not a childish idiot like Wilhelm II.

  • TOFKAS01
    TOFKAS01 4 days ago

    How a simple smoking-habit can turn the world into chaos....butterfly effect.

  • Andy Au
    Andy Au 4 days ago +1

    Germany stop European hegemony

  • ValensBellator
    ValensBellator 4 days ago

    ...gdi tobacco lol

  • tinood bulante
    tinood bulante 5 days ago

    I like your videos, but here on this one by stating 'Frederich could have stopped the later wars' isn't plausible- its like saying, if Napoleon didn't show up at Waterloo 'that day' history would have been different!
    Indeed, in all your coverage of historical battles you deal with the mere record of troop movements, men and what happened- but what is difficult to show are ALL the other factors that led to the outcome- personal considerations of the real 'Players'- their loyalties and blunders- 'who' really stood to win, who 'financed' the confrontation and many more questions. But to simply state- What could have been is too simple- better to stick with recording simply what the surface facts have left us!

  • Kent Schultz
    Kent Schultz 5 days ago

    The Liberals mentioned here are lightyears apart to the statist and corporatist "liberals" we see today jFYI

  • Confédération du Rhin

    World war is never one man's matter. It was destined when two military factions were formed.

  • Rotary Dude
    Rotary Dude 5 days ago

    It really is a shame, countless wars fought, countless men died, all to be thrown away in a world war fought by the worlds aristocracy. And now it's gotten to the point that the Russians own Königsberg...

  • Ixnuraq
    Ixnuraq 6 days ago +1

    Implying that liberalism is good. LOL!

  • Mehmet Aslaner
    Mehmet Aslaner 6 days ago

    Turkish sub. please

  • Mehmet Aslaner
    Mehmet Aslaner 6 days ago

    Turkish sub. please

  • UtopiaBasti
    UtopiaBasti 6 days ago +4

    Friedrich was only Friedrich III of Prussia, not of the whole Empire.
    In the empire he was Friedrich I.
    Greetings from Germany

  • tremor3258
    tremor3258 6 days ago

    Probably the biggest thing would be Fredrick didn't quite have Wilhelm II's urge to be 'British' and do things like build up a fleet, threatening British naval superiority... helping change the cycle of alliances, etc....

  • Jim Smithers
    Jim Smithers 6 days ago

    Should have let AH and Serbia sort their shit out between themselves. WW1 would have been a local skirmish, a footnote in history.

  • Sintoorak
    Sintoorak 7 days ago

    Wtf it’s realpolitik not reelpolitik

  • Hades The Mighty
    Hades The Mighty 7 days ago

    Damn if only everyone were like Frederick III

  • Breakfast of Champions

    Always the bootlicking from the Anglozone.

  • bottomtext
    bottomtext 7 days ago

    5:07 It's Realpolitik. "Reh-ahl-politik".

  • Connor Shidler
    Connor Shidler 7 days ago

    His wife seemed to make him more liberal. It could just be my interpretation of the documentation, but the entire culture of Prussia was against liberalism. And I didn't like his wife not liking Bismarck. How do you not like Bismarck?

  • Deo Triantama
    Deo Triantama 7 days ago +1

    by looking this new sort of content, there will be tons of kings and generals to cover! nice works as always kings & general

  • Peter Timowreef
    Peter Timowreef 8 days ago

    Wait, so the tobacco industry caused the two World Wars? Fascinating.

  • Real Mr Jangoon
    Real Mr Jangoon 8 days ago

    How to act cool:
    WW1 was caused by Germany!😡😡
    Cool: WW1 was caused by a pack of cigarettes

  • Tommy Boman
    Tommy Boman 8 days ago

    World War I is one of, if not THE, biggest mistake in human history. I do not think that a few different decisions by one man would have avoided it completely though, perhaps postponed it or made it different, but not avoided.

  • Roy Riley
    Roy Riley 8 days ago +3

    Not good history. Simplification, speculation and clear political bias. Huge downspike in quality. Stick to detailing the facts of historical engagements please and leave the 'just so stories' to ideologues and bad paleontologists.

  • Ernest Jay
    Ernest Jay 8 days ago +2

    Frederick died because cigarette.
    literally, Cigarette is the cause of 2 world wars !

  • Kasier Mapping
    Kasier Mapping 8 days ago +1

    Bismarck has a plan
    Bismarck *always* has a plan

  • nat1bott
    nat1bott 8 days ago +2

    The Great War was caused by superpower politics and the alliances, the same forces which nearly caused a third world war during the Cold War, it was arguably inevitable and has nothing to do with ideology.

  • Jean Valjean72
    Jean Valjean72 8 days ago +1

    With all due respect this is nonsense! The enemies of that strong and unbelievably successful and prosperous German Reich (of William I.
    and´William II.) sought to destroy her. The reasons of the British elite can be summed up in the following conversation from the year *1907* between *Lord Balfour* and the US diplomat Henry White-
    [Arthur Balfour was a British top politician and chief diplomat (1902-1905 Prime Minister, 1915-1916 First Lord of the Admiralty, 1916-1919 British Foreign Minister)]
    *BALFOUR* : _“We are probably fools not to find a reason for declaring war on Germany before she builds too many ships and takes away our trade.”_
    *WHITE* : _“You are a very high-minded man in private life. How can you possibly contemplate anything so politically immoral as provoking a war against a harmless nation which has as good a right to a navy as you have? If you wish to compete with German trade, work harder.”_
    *BALFOUR* : _“That would mean lowering our standard of living. Perhaps it would be simpler for us to have a war.”_
    *WHITE* : _“I’m shocked that you of all men should enunciate such principles.”_
    *BALFOUR* : _“Is it a question of right or wrong? Maybe it is just a question of keeping our supremacy.”_
    (Source: Allan Nevins, “Henry White - Thirty Years of American Diplomacy”, New York: Harper Bros., 1930, pp. 257-258)
    Link to the pdf-file of the scanned pages:
    or this one:
    _"In the 1890s, the magazine published several articles that expressed an anti-German sentiment, summed up in the quote Germania est delenda
    (Germany needs to be destroyed) which was modeled after Cato's "Carthago delenda est" (Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam)."_

  • NormDesignIRE
    NormDesignIRE 8 days ago +1

    Thanks for this Ep. I absolutely loved it. Cant wait to see more like this. Great Job Folks.

  • jacob wiirre
    jacob wiirre 8 days ago

    So it was as liberalism that brought anti-semetic to the country.They replace Lutheranism with evolutionism, makes sense why the nation had so much hate towards minority groups why Hitler Rose to power so fast. It took seventy years of force teaching it. If Frederick would have lived, I don't think there would have been much a change. War was imminent in the region they just needed a spark, it seemed like every 30 to 40 years would Europe would be in war mode anyways

  • saldownik
    saldownik 8 days ago +1

    Moral of the story: it doesn't matter how good man you are, if you don't support your children to be at least as good

  • Belial
    Belial 9 days ago +1

    As I can see, USSR named wrong in the last map. SSCB stands for "Sovyet Sosyalist Cumhuriyetler Birliği", which is Turkish. Oğuz Tunç (artist of the video) probably got confused about it. Nevertheless, great video, thanks!

    • oğuz tunç
      oğuz tunç 7 days ago +1

      well not confused about the actual name but generaly confused :D It happens when you do not sleep for long hours my friend, sorry for the error and congrats for your keen eyes :D

  • Mack Masters
    Mack Masters 9 days ago

    Nobody could have stopped World War I. World War II could have been prevented if the Allies didn't completely fuck over Germany at the peace table.

  • Sorry Music
    Sorry Music 9 days ago +1

    Great job! :)

  • Roan Westraat
    Roan Westraat 9 days ago

    Interesting video, but its hard to really realize the cascading effect something like Freddy living longer would have had. Imperialism rise and colonialism set Europe up for a big show down long before he came along.

  • rockyblacksmith
    rockyblacksmith 9 days ago

    Wrong map at 6:30 .
    It does not show the situation after the victory of 1871, but rather between the Austro-Prussian and Franko-Prussian wars, so in the time between 1866 and 1871.
    The German Empire was the territory of the North German Confederation plus the territories of Bavaria, Würtemberg, Baden and Hessen, plus the french territories of Alsace and Lorraine.

    • oğuz tunç
      oğuz tunç 7 days ago

      Interesting, we use different sources for the maps with year by year situations shown, sorry this time somehow 1871 maps did not cover the right version.

  • Seth Averay
    Seth Averay 9 days ago

    may not have been the Anglo-German rivalry but the first world war would have happened still because the Austrians still would have declared war on Serbia and Bosnia and all those causing the Russians to still be on there side it and the french still would have wanted to get pay back on the Germans for the Franco-Prussian wars which means that they would have sided with Russians also so it still would have happened and the only reason the British joined the war is because the Germans had to get around the Maginot line and passed through Belgium with out consent and that caused the Belgians and the Brits to declared war on Germany so it probably would have still happened all though the British would have had better relations with the Germans so they might not have joined the war in this alternate universe.

  • I AM I
    I AM I 9 days ago

    Bottom line... Don't smoke 😀😀

  • Evan Angel
    Evan Angel 9 days ago

    The aristocracy creates wars they don’t stop them

  • MackMack 11306
    MackMack 11306 9 days ago

    fUCKING fredrick dying.

  • The Undertaker
    The Undertaker 9 days ago +1

    After 11 minutes I still have no idea how the guy could have stop such a massive conflict which was brewing for ages... At least the visuals are pretty, so it wasn't truly a waste

  • Peter Kauffner
    Peter Kauffner 9 days ago

    If the kaiser had appointed a chancellor responsible to the Reichstag, the Reichstag would have been more influential in 1914, the General Staff would have been less influential, and war might have been avoided. But the quote at the end of the video is nonsense. (11:42) Short of dumping Austria-Hungary, there was nothing Germany could have done to prevent the Franco-Russian Alliance. The naval race and Anglo-German rivalry were resolved in 1912. Britain was drawn into World War I simply as an ally of France.

    • Kings and Generals
      Kings and Generals  9 days ago

      Well, there is another side to this argument - without Germany's support, Austria might have been not as aggressive in the Balkans.

  • Maleficar
    Maleficar 9 days ago

    Im no expert so I dont claim anything in particular about the cause of WWI. Its hardly ever for any one reason though
    What I do know and can confidently claim is that
    war is always inevitable. You avoid one and fall straight to another

    • Maleficar
      Maleficar 9 days ago

      +Kings and Generals Loved the video though, one of the best you've guys put out. Keep up the great work!
      A shame though a good man was brought down by tobacco

    • Kings and Generals
      Kings and Generals  9 days ago +1

      There are always factors that make the sides go to war, that is true.

  • Kyle Wilson
    Kyle Wilson 9 days ago +2

    If only he lived. The problems of the world today may have been adverted.
    Hums "Wir Wollen Unsern Alten Kaiser Wilhelm Wiederhaben":

  • rui carvalho
    rui carvalho 9 days ago +1

    you're channel its the greatest :) THANK YOU SOOO MUCH

  • pioco56
    pioco56 9 days ago

    Well, so you could say smoking ended up with the death of millions of people. Don't smoke, it's bad for you.

  • Anirudh Sridhar
    Anirudh Sridhar 9 days ago +1

    Brilliant video! One of your best yet

  • lanarakala
    lanarakala 9 days ago +1

    Frederick was Armenian. 🇦🇲

  • Chingiz Zhylkybayev
    Chingiz Zhylkybayev 9 days ago +1

    But WWI happened because of international relations. Liberal-ness of a ruler basically only exists in the domain of domestic policy. There is no indication that Frederick III would be any different in his diplomacy compared to his father and son.

  • Phantom swordsman
    Phantom swordsman 9 days ago +1

    Good people die early

  • Ron Lewenberg
    Ron Lewenberg 10 days ago

    If Frederick III and Empress Victoria had raised their son better, if Kaiser Wilhelm II had not been crippled at Birth and such a angry man, and if Frederick the Third had not been a smoker, history would have been different. But that's three counterfactuals to prevent World War 1 as we know it. That doesn't mean there would not have been a different World War 1.
    Would a more liberal Germany and United Kingdom have remained allied with Russia?

  • Mike Bejjani
    Mike Bejjani 10 days ago +2

    Thank you so much for providing such informative educational content. This is one of my favorite videos to date.

  • Peter Kauffner
    Peter Kauffner 10 days ago +1

    Reelpolitik (5:00)? The politics of moviemaking? I assume they mean realpolitik.

  • Konglim Khoo
    Konglim Khoo 10 days ago

    blame it on the cigarette. So Cigarette and was the REAL reason for WW! and 2 and possibly 3.

  • boiniq
    boiniq 10 days ago


  • Ryan BV
    Ryan BV 10 days ago

    Donald Trump is the hero for United States like Frederick the 3rd for Prussia.

  • Anaris10
    Anaris10 10 days ago +1

    Well Done!.

  • TheBeginning
    TheBeginning 10 days ago

    Will you ever make a video about the battle of Pelium?

  • Karl Tsang
    Karl Tsang 10 days ago +3

    Sure, it might have prevented the 2 World Wars, but if he hadn't died that early and the German Empire continued, Poland would never be free. The Prussians, along with the Habsburgs and Russians, partitioned Poland in 1795, and the Prussian Duchy of Posen was created in the Prussian Partition. If the German Empire did not have to undergo World War 1, it is very unlikely that Poland would be freed. Also, Germany was not the cause of World War I, it was that Serbian assassin that killed the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand.

  • Zeruel3
    Zeruel3 10 days ago +1

    Frederick is one of the great 'What Ifs' of history

  • brisbanebill
    brisbanebill 10 days ago

    You did not mention that the initial mis-diagnosis by the English Dr. Morell Mackenzie delayed a throat operation, until it was too late to do so...

  • Vernon Nassar
    Vernon Nassar 10 days ago

    Britain wanted war to stop Germany to become stronger. Both world wars were wanted and mastered by the British. Hence not even Friedrich III could have prevented war.

  • Soviet Ball
    Soviet Ball 10 days ago +1

    Do the battle of Crimea ww2 or do iranian Iraq war

  • Storolf
    Storolf 10 days ago

    So does this mean that indirectly, the death toll attributed to tobacco is many tens of millions higher...

  • NapoleonBonaparte
    NapoleonBonaparte 10 days ago

    What is interesting if the commies took control of Germany post WW1 and Trotsky came to power in the SSSR WW2 would have still happened and the outcome wouldn't have been as peachy

  • Adam Orlowski
    Adam Orlowski 10 days ago +1

    such an interesting story, thanks for sharing

  • Steven E
    Steven E 10 days ago

    hold up!!!!!!! How did you pronounce sixth as sikth!?

  • Saisoun SMB01
    Saisoun SMB01 10 days ago

    This looks like a story mod, it still cool.

  • Scot Coleman
    Scot Coleman 10 days ago +1

    Germany didn't surrender at the end of WWI. It was an armistice, with both sides agreeing to end the fighting. In a show of good faith Germany downsized it's military first, at which point England and France decided that it was no longer a mutual decision. Germany was wrongfully vilified and forced to accept blame, among other things, for a war they didn't start.
    The rest, as they say, is history.

  • Eric Schockemöhle
    Eric Schockemöhle 10 days ago +1

    A very interesting and informative Video. I liked it.
    However, I found 2 minor mistakes:
    1. It's "Realpolitik" not "Reelpolitik"
    2. You showed the map of the North German Confederation after the Franco-German War of 1870/71 although the German Empire was created as a result of the victory in this very war. The same goes for the map in the background when he is sick in his bed
    Also, I don't agree on your conclusion:
    I doubt that him being more liberal would have prevented WWI. Maybe he wouldn't have given the Austrians a Blank Cheque and would thus have prevented WWI. Yes. But him being more liberal alone wouldn't be a reason for the British not to enter the war after the German violation of Belgian neutrality. At least that's my opinion.

  • RiderofRiddermark
    RiderofRiddermark 10 days ago

    Friedrich III. could probably have prevented the Great War if he had kept his wife from mistreating their son and severely damaging his psyche.

  • Sheputster
    Sheputster 10 days ago

    Have you heard the tragedy of Emperor Frederick the III of Germany?

  • mena seven
    mena seven 10 days ago +1

    Probably Frederick III was poisoned because of is liberal ideology

  • ScienceTube
    ScienceTube 10 days ago

    Smoking does indeed kill, my God...

  • -TidalMaster -
    -TidalMaster - 10 days ago

    What was that epic song at ending? pls tell

  • Prussian Mapping
    Prussian Mapping 10 days ago

    There you go. Don't smoke, kids, or you might change the course of history forever.

  • Adriahn Paulo Miguel
    Adriahn Paulo Miguel 11 days ago

    what is the bgm?

  • Симеон Преславски

    Please, make a video about the Battle of Doiran (1918), part of the WW1, fought between Bulgaria and The Allies. A single division managed to crush seven hostile ones.

  • Amirul Asyraf
    Amirul Asyraf 11 days ago +8

    Liberalism back then= Bring something good and in general teach people to respect each other and other's believe and also to respect local custom's.
    Lberalism nowdays= Cancerous

  • Jeremy Basset
    Jeremy Basset 11 days ago

    1:11 aaawwww

  • Imposing Patriot
    Imposing Patriot 11 days ago +1

    instead, we get genocidal lunatics like Merkel, who believe in racial,sexual,religious equity. Perfect way to start more wars.

  • Jack Starr
    Jack Starr 11 days ago +1

    As Germany became economically dominant Britain would have still pushed for war. Liberalism is cancer.

  • RaiDeN131313
    RaiDeN131313 11 days ago

    Is it just me ?

  • Gentleman Von Tweed
    Gentleman Von Tweed 11 days ago

    I support a unified Europe, with a German as it's democratic Emperor. I believe in freedom, as long as your views are aligned with mine.
    This is why we must punish this peasant rebellion going on in Britain.

  • tim van rijn
    tim van rijn 11 days ago +2

    because being liberal and more english is good?
    supporting rights thou (thumbs up)

  • Dumbleblock 38
    Dumbleblock 38 11 days ago +1

    French surrender

  • Kia me
    Kia me 11 days ago +1

    I wanted to ask if you could do the conquest of the Median Empire by the persians

  • Anthony Salazar
    Anthony Salazar 11 days ago

    "If's" don't exist

  • Samuel Hall
    Samuel Hall 11 days ago

    Surely the sides would just have been different in WW1 if Frederick III had lived longer? E.g. England and Germany being allies rather than enemies.