The unification of Germany into a politically and administratively integrated nation state officially occurred on 18 January 1871, in the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles in France. Princes of the German states, excluding Austria, gathered there to proclaim William I of Prussia as German …
Germania, a personification of the German nation, appears in Philipp Veit's fresco (1834–36). She is holding a shield with the coat of arms of the German Confederation. The shields on which she stands are the arms of the seven traditional Electors of the Holy Roman Empire.
In October, 1817, approximately 500 students rallied at Wartburg Castle, where Martin Luther had sought refuge over three centuries earlier, to demonstrate in favor of national unification. Wartburg was chosen for its symbolic connection to German national character. Contemporary, colored wood engraving.
This drawing offered a satirical commentary on the prevalence of toll barriers in the many German states, circa 1834. Some states were so small that transporters loaded and reloaded their cargoes two and three times a day.