Bismarck's last five years as Chancellor have traditionally been thought of as the climax of his achievements as a European states-- man. His system of alliances for the consolidation of Germany's position as a latent hegemonial power was completed in 1887 by the Re-insurance Treaty with Russia and the Mediterranean Entent between Britain, Italy and Austria-Hungary. In reality, Bismarck desperately tried to juggle with new treaties in order at least to postpone the breakdown of his whole concept, as the alliance between Russia and France became a more and more threatening possibility.