What would the world be like if America lost the revolutionary war?


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Would largely agree the world would be similar to some extent. However the US would have joined in both world wars from the start.

That or it would have been so radically different because of the British Empire being even more powerful than it was in the 19thC that it changed everything, particularly continental European events and predicting it would be a fools errand.

Without a doubt the liberal democratic capitalism that was forged in Britain and the US would still spread and dominate the world.

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He’s got a good point about having much better rude words.

Oh, and crumpets…


I would imagine that there would still be subsequent uprisings due to the causes of the American “revolution” still being in place, added to the resentment of military subjugation. So, basically like the Irish, except a larger land mass on which to rebel.

If the French Revolution still happened and Napoleon still rose to power, the Napoleonic Wars would be different. Instead of the Louisiana Purchase, the British Empire would have just taken the territory in war. Would this have been another French and Indian War?

If the French Revolution didn’t happen, would the Franco-Prussian War not have happened, and thus the Franco-German series of conflicts and the positive feedback cycle involving war, territory swaps, reparations, and resentment not have been the same?

You could still have the Victorian arms race between the UK and Germany, so WWI could still happen, but imagine a French monarchy that maybe doesn’t want to get involved. Imagine just a Russian front and a naval campaign for dominance in the North Sea. No trench warfare across the fields of France. That would like go over better for Germany.

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Feh, be a little more imaginative. I’d rather see a movie where America won the Peloponnesian War.

I don’t care if they weren’t there, that’s what Hollywood is for.


As you allude in the 3rd paragraoh: Why would there be a Germany? Even tough there seemed to a be a trend to unite various related states , it’s in no way safe that the Germanies would have united the way they did if there hadn’t been a French revolution and ultimately a Napoleon. And WW I was heavily influenced by our dear Kaiser’s family hangups, which would have been vastly different in any alternate timeline.


If I learned anything about alternative history, it’s that there’s a significant chance that an Adolf Hitler will start a World War in which Germany gets trounced. Even if if this requires the world to totally ignore a horrific South African regimes that thrives on slaves which they murder in the most horrific ways.

Would merchantilist Britain slow down the development of competing North American heavy industry, preferring that the Colonies be mostly a source of raw materials? Could this delay impact the industrial output of America that finished off Hitler?
Alternatively, when England abolished slavery in the early 1800s would America be included? Or would the importance of slave labor delay Abolition? I once read that by about 1816 the book value of all American slaves was several times larger than the federal budget.

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America didn’t even have to “lose” a war to stay under Britain’s power. Had the King given them a bit more autonomy and adjusted taxes, you know, diplomacy, then America would have been a British colony perhaps to this day. The British Empire may never had released its control.

Also, while we are playing what if, what if 80-90% of the Native American’s had not succumbed to disease? Perhaps early colonization would have been possible on the East Coast still, but I don’t see Manifest Destiny ever coming to a realization. I could see America in a European-like mash of various cultures, Colonies of England, France, and Spain, with the larger Indian Nations forming their own territories.


Of course, one of the biggest tensions between FDR and Churchill was the US pressure about decolonization to follow the war. Assuming a WW2 in that timeline, The UK would have had no such pressure to yield to such a plan. The Empire would still be going strong, I trust.

Forgot to add this:

Slavery would probably have been abolished in 1807.
The American civil war probably wouldn’t have happened.
An native American state might have been established around the Great Lakes.
Americans would be drinking more tea.
All in all, quite an improvement :wink:


Close enough: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rome,_Sweet_Rome

I liked the part about Bill Murray.

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Yeah, I was thinking about that. There’s also the Island in the Sea of Time series by S.M. Stirling if you want to err in the other direction but that’s less likely to be made in movie form.

If we had lost, we’d all be speaking English right now, be known as a jingoistic empire that just wants to rule the world, and obsess over our standing in international soccer.

No thank you.


a comedy where, the morning after dropping a twinkie wrapper in a new particle accelerator

As long as it’s not all “some variety of black tea with sugar and cream”… I’m ok with all of the above.

Hey England! Some green tea or an oolong or even a “white” tea is ok every now and then…


The butterfly effect would guarantee that, within a generation or two of the point of divergence, the people being born would be completely different from the ones that were born in our timeline–that is, they would be born to the same parents as the famous and influential people in our own, and maybe even have the same names, but the Abraham Lincoln of the new timeline wouldn’t have the same genetic makeup as the one in ours, due to his parents not having conceived him at the exact same time, due in turn to a number of other factors great and small. The factors that influenced the development of our world would still be there, even with a different sort of government in place between the 49th Parallel and the Rio Grande, but with an almost completely different set of actors starting from about the early 19th century forward.