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July Crisis

(720 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
July Crisis Few topics from the history of the First World War have been discussed more intensively by historians and in the public arena than the July Crisis of 1914. Into the 1930s in Germany, the foremost question was that of the justice of the accusation of “war guilt” as expressed in Article 231 of the Versailles Treaty. In this case the predominant opinion initially, and even after the Second World War, was that all the powers “stumbled” into war. In the 1960s, Fritz Fischer brought to the c…

Foreword to the Revised Edition

(148 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Foreword to the Revised Edition The lasting interest in our Enzyklopädie Erster Weltkrieg, released in 2003, has motivated us to publish a third edition, revised and expanded, as part of the Universitätstaschenbücher (University Paperbacks Series, UTB). In order to include the intensive research on the First World War undertaken since its original publication, we have added a number of new entries. A comprehensive record of the persons and places increases the usefulness of this reference work. The bibliography has likewise been …

War Guilt

(797 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
War Guilt The question of responsibility for the First World War was actually the subject of controversial discussion even before the outbreak of war, during the July Crisis of 1914, and was even answered propagandistically, to justify positions taken. Proclamations at the outset of the war, such as the “balcony speech” of Kaiser Wilhelm II on August 4 (“It is not the desire for conquest that drives us . . .”) or Poincaré’s “ Union sacrée” address on the same date (“In the war now breaking out, France has right on her side.”) always emphasize the defensive character of…


(9,690 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Places Aarschot 29 Abadan 798 Abercorn 569, 684 Abrolhos Islands 502 Abu Chuff 563 Abyssinia 227 Acre 945 Aden 625 Adrianople (Edirne) 350, 946 Adriatic 44, 57, 73, 255, 313, 350, 368, 452, 482, 506, 644, 741, 875f., 888, 896, 918, 1021 Aegean 236, 350, 392, 454, 486, 585 Afghanistan 474, 495, 592, 626, 777 Africa 184–187, 191f., 194, 213, 218, 225, 293, 299, 306, 343, 355, 380f., 407, 413, 428, 430–434, 438, 511, 569, 576f., 597, 625, 627, 630, 663, 668, 683f., 735, 737, 746, 764, 785–788, 806, 824, 835, 867, 876, 888, 893, 902, 919f., 938f., 961, 1021 Agadir 687, 746 Agram (Zagreb) 61 Ağri 409 Aire …

Lanrezac, Charles Louis Marie

(258 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Lanrezac, Charles Louis Marie (July 31, 1852, Guadeloupe – January 18, 1925, Neuilly-sur-Seine), French general. In 1905 Lanrezac, who was known as an expert in tactics, became a professor at the École de Guerre – a function he continued to perform until 1914 when, at the age of 62, he was appointed commander of the Fifth Army. In that capacity he saw action during the French opening offensive into Lorraine and was then exposed to the enveloping German counterattacks near Charleroi (August 22–23, 19…

Subject Index

(2,634 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Subject Index 08/15, see Null-Acht-Fünfzehn (Maxim Machine Gun) A Adriatic 255 Advertising 255 Aerial Warfare Africa Africa (German East Africa) 569 Africa (German Southwest Africa) 576 Africa (North Africa) 785 Africa (South Africa) 919 Africa (Sub-Saharan Africa) 938 Aircraft 260 Airship, see Zeppelin Alain-Fournier, Henri 262 Albania 262 Alberich, Operation 264 Albert I, King of the Belgians 265 Albion 266 Albrecht, Duke of Württemberg 267 Alekseyev, Mikhail Vasilyevich 267 Allenby, Edmund 268 Alpine Warfare 269 Alsace-Lorraine 273 Animals 275 Annunzio, see D’Annunzio, …


(611 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Douaumont Fort and village to the north of the fortress of Verdun. The fortress of Verdun had been further secured by many forts on the surrounding hills. The largest and most important of these protective forts was the one at DouaumontIn existence since 1885, the original complex had been continually reinforced during the 1890s. Among other measures were additional concrete ceilings, up to 2.50 m thick. The fort had a turret for a 15.5-cm gun, with retractable observation tower. It had been prov…


(720 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Contributors Afflerbach, Holger, Prof. (Leeds) Albes, Jens, Dr. (Koblenz) Allain, Jean-Claude, Prof. † Audoin-Rouzeau, Stéphane, Prof. (Paris) Baumeister, Martin, Prof. (Munich) Bavendamm, Gundula, Dr. (Taunusstein) Beaupré, Nicolas, Dr. (Clermont-Ferrand) Becker, Annette, Prof. (Paris) Becker, Jean-Jacques, Prof. (Paris) Beckers, Thomas, MA (Düsseldorf ) Behrenbeck, Sabine, Dr. (Cologne) Bendick, Rainer, Dr. (Osnabrück) Berghoff, Hartmut, Prof. (Washington DC/ Göttingen) Bessel, Richard, Prof. (York) Blom, J.C.H., Prof. (Leiden) Bohn, Robert, Prof. Dr. (Fle…

Roques, Pierre Auguste

(230 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Roques, Pierre Auguste (December 20, 1856, Marseillan [département Hérault] – February 26, 1920, Saint-Cloud [near Paris]), French general (minister of war). Roques first made his reputation during his service in the French colonial army in the 1890s as General Gallieni closest subordinate in the pacification and development of Madagascar, where he was responsible for the creation of a technical infrastructure. General of a division and responsible in the war ministry for technical troops from 1909…

Gallieni, Joseph-Simon

(365 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Gallieni, Joseph-Simon (April 24, 1849, Saint-Béat [Haute-Garonne] – May 27, 1916, Versailles), French general and politician. Gallieni already had a long and impressive military career behind him when the First World War began. After taking part in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–1871, he soon became probably France’s most celebrated colonial soldier. He was appointed commander in chief in French Sudan in 1886. In 1896 he was employed in the pacification of Madagascar. Back in France, Brigadier G…


(7,427 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Persons Aalst, Cornelis J.K. van 774 Abbas II Hilmi Bey 785 Abd el-Malik 786 Abderhalden, Emil 1015 Abdul Hamid II 599, 620, 662 Abdullah I bin al-Hussein, Emir and King of Transjordan 283, 620 Adenauer, Konrad 883 Adler, Friedrich 54, 933 Adler, Viktor 933 Adolfi, John G. 517 Aitken, Arthur Edward 569 Alain-Fournier, Henri 262 Albert I, King of the Belgians 28, 265f., 597, 686, 717 Albertini, Luigi 245 Albrecht, Duke of Württemberg 267, 299, 673, 1045 Alby, Henri Edouard 295 Alderson, Sir Edwin A.H. 290, 400 Aldington, Richard 144 Aleksandar I Karadjordjević, Prince Regent of Serbia…

Kerensky Offensive

(725 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Kerensky Offensive Contrary to the expectations and hopes of the Central Powers, the Russian February Revolution initially brought a considerable improvement of Russia’s political and military fighting morale. Alexander Kerensky, minister of war from May 19, 1917, onward, followed the motto that Russia was by and large in favor of a “peace without annexations and contributions,” but under certain circumstances also ready to fight for a “peace without defeat.” In July 1917, Kerensky toured the fron…

Lyautey, Louis Hubert Gonzalve

(283 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Lyautey, Louis Hubert Gonzalve (November 17, 1854, Nancy – July 21, 1934, Thorey [Département Meurthe-et-Moselle]), French general and politician (minister of war). A cavalry officer serving at the Saint-Cyr military academy from 1873, Lyautey was politically to the right, but always remained alive to social questions. In the 1890s he produced proposals for reforming the social role of army officers. He was frequently employed in the French colonies in the 1890s, as well as in Algeria. From 1912 he …

Writing the History of the First World War

(6,763 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd | Hirschfeld, Gerhard
Historiography Writing the History of the First World War The historiography of the First World War had already begun during the war. At first, its most important feature was to record a “great and exalting time” for the participants and their descendants, a record in which the documents and propaganda were largely blotted out. The development of rotary printing press methods, the standardized integration of documentary photo illustrations, and the possibilities offered by economical color-separation pri…

Painlevé, Paul

(466 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Painlevé, Paul (December 5, 1863, Paris – October 29, 1933, Paris), French politician (minister for war, prime minister). Painlevé was not only a politically prominent personality, twice a prime minister and later the minister for war, but also a renowned mathematician. A professor of mathematics in Lille since 1887, Painlevé first came to the attention of the public when in 1890, he received the Grand Prix des Sciences Mathématiques (‘Grand Prize in Mathematical Sciences’) of the Académie Française. His primary research area was related to friction energy. He w…

Castelnau, Noël Marie Joseph Édouard,Vicomte de Curières de

(263 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Castelnau, Noël Marie Joseph Édouard,Vicomte de Curières de (December 24, 1851, Saint-Affrique, départe-ment Aveyron – March 19, 1944, Montastruc-la-Conseillère, département Haute-Garonne), French general. After taking part in the Franco-German War of 1870–1871 and studying at the École Supérieure de Guerre, Castelnau joined the French General Staff, where he became one of the leading figures behind the development of the offensive 1914 mobilization plan known as Plan VXII. Castelnau was a member of the…

National Socialism

(2,472 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
National Socialism The first industrialized mass war had considerable effects on political and social relationships, and on the mentality of people. Italian Fascism and German National Socialism owe their particular characteristics and their legitimization to the First World War, described by Eric J. Hobsbawm as a “machine for brutalizing the world.” By his own testimony, Hitler himself was a “son of the war.” In repeated references to the war in Mein Kampf and in numerous statements and documented conversations ( Hitler’s Table Talks), Hitler returned time and again to his p…

Table of Contents

(237 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Table of Contents Volume I Foreword vii Foreword to the Revised Edition viii Essays 1 States 3 Germany Wolfgang J. Mommsen 5 France Jean-Jacques Becker 18 Belgium Laurence van Ypersele 28 Great Britain Jay Winter 33 Austria-Hungary Manfried Rauchensteiner 44 Russia Dittmar Dahlmann 63 Italy Mario Isnenghi 72 United States Ronald Schaffer 78 Social Aspects of the War 87 Women Ute Daniel 89 Children and Adolescents Stéphane Audoin-Rouzeau 103 Workers Dick Geary 108 Soldiers Benjamin Ziemann 118 Scientists Jürgen von Ungern-Sternberg 129 War Literature Bernd Hüppauf 135 Religion Annet…


(2,073 words)

Author(s): Krumeich, Gerd
Verdun A French fortress that was continually expanded since the Franco-Prussian War of 1870/1871. With its 20 forts and 40 intermediate redoubts, Verdun was without any doubt the strongest defense work in France. The principal forts in the vicinity of Verdun included Douaumont, Vaux, Souville, and Tavannes. Verdun was considered to be practically impregnable. During the German advance of August 1914, the German Fifth Army (under Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia) operated in the sector before Verd…


(1,158 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard | Krumeich, Gerd | Renz, Irina
Foreword The First World War endures in human memory as an event of especial significance. The French still refer to it as the “Grande Guerre”; the Germans and Austrians, “der Große Krieg”; and the British and Americans, the “Great War.” Those who survived it are no more. Even the children of the war years have died by now. Yet the war did not pass away with the generation that waged and endured it. World War One will remain the defining experience of the 20th century. The war evolved from a localized European conflict to a global catastrophe. The swift disintegration of multina…
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