How Nations Age
I’ve been thinking about this lately, so here’s how I personally headcanon the nations aging.
- We never see any actual infants in Hetalia. Since these people are born representing their nations and likely don’t have anyone to raise them from infancy, they’d come into existence already old enough to have some level of independence. So, old enough to walk and talk and eat solid food and the like. Therefore, nations come into being around the rough human age of 3-4.
- From the time they are born, nations will age rather slowly (but steadily) as their government and society develops and they kind of begin to define who they are as a nation. The growth rate at this stage can vary.
- As a young nation gains more control over its own affairs, it will prosper and grow faster.
However, this growth is often stunted if the young nation is a protectorate or colony, or otherwise being strongly influenced by a foreign power. Nations will generally stop growing at a prepubescent age if they are still being controlled by a foreign power (this is why the micronations are generally young).
- When a young nation/colony has a strong push for independence, they will start growing again even before they gain that independence (this is why America aged so rapidly).
- Nations age more quickly during periods of mass upheaval (like American revolution), or events that drastically affect their land and people (such as a civil war, invasion, foreign occupation, or war that takes place heavily on their own soil). This aging is usually comparatively fast for a nation and may even approach the rate at which humans age from time to time.
Example: America would have been discovered by European nations bearing an appearance age of about 3. He would have aged as the American colonies began to develop but would have begun to stall just before puberty. After England leaves him alone for a while, he starts yearning for independence and begins to age again. By the time the revolution starts he’s about 14. He continues to age during the revolution, and by the time it’s over he’s about 16. He stays pretty steady until the civil war, then ages another couple of years and looks about 18 by the end. Since WWI took place mostly off American soil, he didn’t age much during WWI. He aged to 19 during WWII due to more involvement and a more direct homeland connection through Pearl Harbor and territories in the Pacific theatre.