Brill’s Digital Library of World War I

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Brill’s Digital Library of World War I is an online resource that contains over 700 encyclopedia entries plus 250 peer-reviewed articles of transnational and global historical perspectives on significant topics of World War I. This collection includes Brill’s Encyclopedia of the First World War, an unrivalled reference work that showcases the knowledge of experts from 15 countries and offers 26 additional essays on the major belligerents, wartime society and culture, diplomatic and military events, and the historiography of the Great War.

The 250 articles address not only the key issues from political, historical and cultural perspectives, but also engages with aspects of the war which have remained underexplored such as the neutrals, the role of women before, during and after the war, and memory. The chapters have been drawn from a select number of Brill publications that have been published in the last 15 years. Brill’s Digital Library of World War I is a unique digital library that will allow researchers to discover new perspectives and connections with the enhanced navigational tools provided.

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API API

(82 words)

Author(s): van Tuyll van Serooskerken, Hubert P.
van Tuyll van Serooskerken, Hubert P. - API API ‛The Netherlands and World War I’ Hubert P. van Tuyll van Serooskerken, Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2001 e-ISBN: 9789047405187 DOI: 10.1163/9789047405187.004 © 2001 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands van Tuyll van Serooskerken, Hubert P.

Apollinaire, Guillaume

(280 words)

Author(s): Beaupré, Nicolas
Apollinaire, Guillaume (August 26, 1880, Rome – November 9, 1918, Paris), French poet and art critic whose real name was Wilhelm Apollinaris de Kostrowitzky. Not least because of the scandal surrounding his volume of poetry, Alcools, published in 1913, Apollinaire was thought to be one of the most important modern French poets alongside Blaise Cendrars at the outbreak of the war. As a Russian national (his mother was Polish) he was not drafted into the army at the beginning of the war, but he became a volunteer and enlisted with the artillery. At his own …

Arab Revolt

(808 words)

Author(s): Neulen, Hans Werner
Arab Revolt Bedouin uprising against Turkish suzerainty. In July of 1915 the Emir of Mecca, Hussein bin Ali, began negotiations with the British High Commissioner in Egypt regarding the Arab desire for independence and British support for a rebellion against the Ottoman Empire. For Great Britain this presented an opportunity to increase its influence in the Middle East considerably. While making promises to Hussein, the British simultaneously divided the Middle East into a French and a British sph…

Ardour and Anxiety: Politics and Literature in the Indian Homefront

(10,932 words)

Author(s): Das, Santanu
Das, Santanu - Ardour and Anxiety: Politics and Literature in the Indian Homefront Keywords: India | Home fronts | Literature | Society | Religion | Women and War | The French and British Empires | Visual Arts | Masculinity The World in World Wars Heike Liebau, Katrin Bromber , Katharina Lange , Dyala Hamzah and Ravi Ahuja , (2010) Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2010 e-ISBN: 9789004188471 DOI: 10.1163/ej.9789004185456.i-618.82 © 2010 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Das, Santanu

Argonne Forest

(733 words)

Author(s): Werth, German
Argonne Forest Densely wooded plateau between the Champagne region and the Côtes Lorraines (Meuse Valley), extending some 12 km east to west, and about 50–60 km north to south. In World War I it was the theater of a tenacious small-scale war of attrition that was being fought on the edges of the larger decisive battles. During the German advance in late August and early September of 1914, neither the German Fifth (operating immediately to the west of Verdun) and Fourth Armies, nor the retreating F…

Armed Forces (Austria-Hungary)

(3,011 words)

Author(s): Rauchensteiner, Manfried
Armed Forces (Austria-Hungary) The organization of the Austro-Hungarian Armed Forces during the First World War originated in the Compromise of 1867. Under this agreement the Habsburg Monarchy sported the outward appearance of a dual monarchy, yet internally there was minimal uniformity, and the merest balance of interests. The major weakness of the Compromise between the Kingdom of Hungary and the remainder of the Double Monarchy was the fact that the Slavs within Austria-Hungary, who had mainly s…

Armed Forces (Dominions)

(3,147 words)

Author(s): Grey, Jeffrey
Armed Forces (Dominions) The settler colonies of the British Empire (Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and South Africa) had already acquired the status of dominions prior to 1914, as part of a constitutional development towards full independence. Self-determination in domestic matters had already been granted to Canada in 1867, to Australia in 1901, to New Zealand in 1907, and to South Africa in 1910. The British declaration of war on Germany in 1914 was binding for all dominions, since London still…

Armed Forces (France)

(2,071 words)

Author(s): Jauffret, Jean-Charles
Armed Forces (France) During the World War the French armed forces were faced with an extraordinary organizational challenge. Including foreign legionaries and the colonial troops, there were a total 8.7 million men assembled under arms. Until General Joffre was replaced as commander-in-chief in December 1916, Grand Quartier Général (General Staff, GQG) held the supreme command. According to the decree of December 2, 1913, in time of war its commander in chief would maintain supreme command of the zone des armées (militarized zone), while the minister of war would be respo…

Armed Forces (German Empire)

(4,574 words)

Author(s): Deist, Wilhelm
Armed Forces (German Empire) In July 1914 the Army of the German Empire numbered 761,000 men, organized in 25 army corps. An additional 79,000 men served in the navy, and 9,000 in the colonial protection force. Those mobilized at the beginning of the war numbered 3.820 million in all, 2.086 million of whom made up the field army, divided into 40 army corps. Thus began a development that, during the years that followed, led to the general, extended mobilization of the German nation’s human resources for war. Some 13 million men served in the forces of the German Reich during the war. These figure…

Armed Forces (Great Britain)

(4,680 words)

Author(s): Bourne, J.M.
Armed Forces (Great Britain) The First World War was a highly unpleasant experience for the British. The perception of this war in public opinion was once summed up by the historian A.J.P. Taylor in the disparaging words “brave, helpless soldiers; blundering, obstinate generals; nothing achieved.” This negative view was primarily the consequence of the losses of human life, as the number of casualties among the soldiers was without precedent in the history of Great Britain. The majority of these los…

Armed Forces (Italy)

(3,527 words)

Author(s): Massignani, Alessandro
Armed Forces (Italy) The defense of the Italian Kingdom proclaimed on February 18, 1861, was the duty of the Royal Army and the Royal Navy. The King was nominally the supreme commander of the military in peacetime, but the chiefs of the General Staff and the Admiralty functioned as the de facto Supreme Command in time of war. Italy’s new national army evolved from the Piedmontese Army that had fought in the Wars of Independence. Though gradually restructured into the Royal Italian Army, it maintained its traditional character, especially the imprint of…

Armed Forces (Russia)

(2,272 words)

Author(s): Brand, Bettina | Dahlmann, Dittmar
Armed Forces (Russia) One year before the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904/1905, the standing Russian army comprised approximately 41,000 officers, 10,000 military service personnel (including army dentists), and approximately 1 million non-commissioned officers and other ranks. There was provision for about 2 million reservists. Some 3 million non-commissioned officers and other ranks could thus be mobilized in the event of war. The guard regiments had a particular role and status in the Russian Imperial Army until the end of the First World War.…

Armed Forces (United States)

(3,756 words)

Author(s): Showalter, Dennis E.
Armed Forces (United States) During the First World War the armed forces of the United States were crafted by national politics. The Russian Provisional Government of 1917 had promised resolutely to continue the war in the East. On the Western Front, the Germans were unequivocally on the defensive. In no way was America itself directly threatened. Nevertheless, the pattern developed in the World War would guide the United States in 20th century warfare. Politics would determine the strategy, the org…

Armenians

(1,863 words)

Author(s): Gust, Wolfgang
Armenians At the beginning of the First World War, Armenians populated a relatively clearly defined area that comprised the southern Caucasus, western Persia, and parts of the Ottoman Empire. However, in the Ottoman Empire Armenians constituted the majority of inhabitants in a handful of cities, such as Muş and Van. When the first Turkic peoples arrived in Asia Minor, the Armenians already had a thousand-year-long history in the region. In the ensuing period, many Armenians migrated westward and …

Armistice

(996 words)

Author(s): Schwabe, Klaus
Armistice This term refers to the cessation of hostilities between the Entente Powers and the Central Powers in 1918. In fact, the Armistice agreements concluded by the victors with Bulgaria (on September 30 at Salonica, now Thessalonika), with Turkey (on October 31 at the port of Moudros on the island of Lemnos), with the Habsburg Empire (on November 3 in the Villa Giusti near Padua), and with the German Reich (on November 11 at Compiègne-Rethondes) made it impossible for the Central Powers to resume hostilities. In reality, therefore, armistice amounted to capitulation. It was Genera…

Army Corps District

(482 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Army Corps District Official German military command. Each of the 25 active army corps of the German Reich was placed under the command of an army corps districts. As a rule a commanding general of infantry, cavalry, or artillery was placed in charge of an army corps district. German army corps districts controlled the largest combined-arms units of the peacetime army, and the generals in charge of them had the right to report directly to the Kaiser. After the 1914 German mobilization, the army cor…

Army Corps Districts

(411 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Army Corps Districts When they mobilized, the twenty-five active army corps each left a deputy commanding general behind on the home front. Upon the outbreak of war, the senior deputy commanding general was assigned as the military commandant with full power in his territory (military district), answerable exclusively to the Kaiser. The powers and assigned duties of the deputy commanding general grew considerably in the course of the war. For example, the deputy commanding generals of the XIIIth Ro…

Army Daily Report

(260 words)

Author(s): Thoss, Bruno
Army Daily Report This was the official, daily summary report given by the commanders-in-chief of the warring states to inform the public about developments in the World War. The events recorded in the German Army Daily Report were at first compiled by the quartermaster general; later, by Department IIIb of the Deputy General Staff in Berlin; and then, by the Operations Office of the Supreme Army Command. In addition to press censorship, an additional means for military control of news releases to the homeland was made available t…

Army, Ethnicity and Society in British India

(10,311 words)

Author(s): Barkawi, Tarak
Barkawi, Tarak - Army, Ethnicity and Society in British India Keywords: British Indian army | colonial society | ethnicity | Henry Lawrence | military organization | Second World War Abstract: This chapter discusses power, ethnicity and military organization in British imperial context, and of the 'class' or communal organization of the post-mutiny Indian Army. It turns to the character of ethnic relations in the Indian Army in the Second World War. The chapter takes up the question of military anthropol…

Army Postal Service

(989 words)

Author(s): Latzel, Klaus
Army Postal Service Besides the arrangements made by civil and military authorities to provide for the transmission of mail between the battlefront and home, as well as within the army, the term also applies to the various items of mail themselves: postcards, letters, packets, parcels, newspapers, and other printed material, and not least the written exchange of information between military command posts and headquarters. In the age of modern mass armies, the army postal service was especially important. The advent of total war required not only comprehensiv…
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