Brill’s Digital Library of World War I

Search

Your search for 'tei_subject:"Germany"' returned 424 results. Modify search

Sort Results by Relevance | Newest titles first | Oldest titles first

Generalship and Mass Surrender during the Italian Defeat at Caporetto

(9,337 words)

Author(s): Wilcox, Vanda
Wilcox, Vanda - Generalship and Mass Surrender during the Italian Defeat at Caporetto Keywords: Caporetto | Italian Defeat | mass surrender ISFWWS-Keywords: Italian-Austrian Front | Italy | Military organisation of combat | Austria-Hungary | Germany | Experience of combat Abstract: The Italian defeat at Caporetto in October 1917 has been the subject of fierce historiographical debate. An examination of the conduct of the opening stage of the battle offers some answers as to the nature and causes of mass surrender at Ca…

Groener, Wilhelm

(732 words)

Author(s): Kitchen, Martin
Groener, Wilhelm (November 22, 1867, Ludwigsburg – May 3, 1939, Bornstedt [today part of Potsdam]), German general and first quartermaster general in the general staff of the field army. The son of a warrant officer from Württemberg, Groener owed his career in the Prussian-German Army solely to his exceptional skills and was one of the leading “technicians” whose opinions gained increasing weight in the general staff. Groener was a cultivated and liberal man, although he was also receptive to the …

Khaki Elections

(217 words)

Author(s): Letho, Mandy
Khaki Elections The general election for the British House of Commons in December 1918 secured a working majority in Parliament for the Liberal prime minister David Lloyd George and his coalition government, made up of Conservatives (led by Andrew Bonar Law) and Liberals. The coalition governed until 1922. This parliamentary election acquired its name from the brown color of the uniforms of the many soldiers, at this time yet to be demobilized, among the voters. The term continues in general use in Britain for elections held during, or immediately after a war. Politically, the Khaki El…

Forging The Industrial Home Front: Iron-Nail Memorials in the Ruhr

(92 words)

Author(s): Goebel, Stefan
Goebel, Stefan - Forging The Industrial Home Front: Iron-Nail Memorials in the Ruhr Keywords: Home fronts | Germany | Visual Arts | Economy | Society | Culture ‛Uncovered Fields’ Jenny Macleod and Pierre Purseigle, Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2004 e-ISBN: 9789047402596 DOI: 10.1163/9789047402596.010 © 2004 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Goebel, Stefan

Soldiers’ Newspapers

(1,076 words)

Author(s): Nelson, Robert L.
Soldiers’ Newspapers Collective term for publications that were produced in the immediate vicinity of the front (front and trench newspapers) or in the rear areas by the official military authorities (army and corps newspapers). The editorial staffs of the soldiers’ newspapers consisted mostly of officers, but also of lower-ranking soldiers. Many soldiers’ newspapers printed official war bulletins and “eyewitness accounts” of recent events that had been written down by the war participants themsel…

Neutral States

(688 words)

Author(s): Hoff, Henning
Neutral States States that do not participate in a war. The legal status “neutral” implies the right and the duty to pursue corresponding policies. The consequence thereof is a foreign policy that avoids any more or less explicit alignment in the international conflicts that occur in times of peace. Six European states adhered to various forms of neutrality for the entire duration of the war. The monarchs of the Scandinavian states Denmark (Christian X), the sovereign territory of which also inclu…

Serbia

(1,820 words)

Author(s): Hirschfeld, Gerhard
Serbia Established in 1882, the Southern Slavic Kingdom of Serbia was governed until 1914 by Petar I of Serbia (1844–1921), who an officers’ conspiracy had brought to power in 1903 and who was subsequently elected king by the Serbian National Assembly. Relying on the support of the Radical Party of Prime Minister Nikola Pašić (1846–1926), the king championed a Greater Serbian policy that was particularly directed against the interests of Austria-Hungary. In 1906, this policy led to a trade war, t…

Infantry Weaponry/Weapons

(3,025 words)

Author(s): Thoss, Bruno
Infantry Weaponry/Weapons Weapons technology during the First World War was geared mainly to the ground war, drawn from traditional types of infantry and artillery weapons. At the beginning of the war, cavalry was still relatively important, though they no longer had a decisive function in battle. For equipment early in the war, troops relied upon firearms such as rifles, carbines, machine guns and pistols; cutting and thrusting blades including bayonets, sabers, and lances; and explosive devices …

Brittain, Vera

(232 words)

Author(s): Reimann, Aribert
Brittain, Vera (December 29, 1893, Newcastle-under-Lyme – March 29, 1970, London), English writer. Brittain became particularly well-known through her memoir Testament of Youth (1933), which was based on her correspondence with her younger brother Edward, her fiancé Roland Leighton and other friends, as well as her own diaries from the time of the First World War. Already a student at Somerville College (Oxford) at the beginning of the war, she decided to go to France, Malta, and London first to work as a Voluntary A…

August Experience

(1,226 words)

Author(s): Verhey, Jeffrey
August Experience Augusterlebnis (August Experience) was the contemporary German term for the patriotic enthusiasm among the German population at the outbreak of the war. The well-known images from the last weeks of July and from August of 1914 depict masses of people in the streets. The contemporary captions under the pictures suggest that these people were unanimously filled with “war enthusiasm.” The pictures are impressive but they do not tell the whole truth. In reality there was no near-ecst…

Lansing Note

(488 words)

Author(s): Waechter, Matthias
Lansing Note A diplomatic note conveyed to the leadership of the German Reich on November 5, 1918, by the United States, France, and Britain. Known in Germany by the name of then American Secretary of State Robert Lansing. The Allies declared in this note that they accepted American President Wilson’s 14-point program as a common basis for peace negotiations. This declaration followed several weeks of exchanges of notes between Germany and the United States concerning conditions for the cease-fire and the peace. The leadership of th…

Pacelli, Eugenio

(249 words)

Author(s): Becker, Annette
Pacelli, Eugenio (March 2, 1876, Rome – October 9, 1958, Castel Gandolfo), Italian clergyman and papal diplomat, later Pope Pius XII. Pacelli was born into a lower-class, Roman Catholic family that was closely connected to the Vatican. As a priest and jurist, Pacelli rose quickly to the higher offices within the Vatican administration. Ultimately in 1939, he was elected pope. In 1901 Pacelli joined the Papal State Secretariat of Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs, becoming its secretary in 1912. Pacelli climbed every rung of the career ladder. During t…

Film (1914–1918)

(1,029 words)

Author(s): Brandt, Susanne
Film (1914–1918) The triumphal progress of film began with the first cinema shows in Paris and Berlin in 1895. In Berlin alone, in 1914 there were already more than 200 cinemas, with a total capacity of 120,000. And the audience constantly grew in number: according to contemporary estimates, between 1 million and 1.5 million people visited the cinema each day in Germany before the First World War. Many attended regularly, with a third of the total seeing a performance every week. Most of the regul…

Heroes’ Groves

(499 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Gerhard
Heroes’ Groves On December 8, 1914, an article by the head of the German Royal Horticultural College’s Department for Plant Production, Berliner Willy Lange, appeared in the entertainment section of the Täglichen Rundschau. In his article, “Oaks for Heroes and Lindens for Peace,” Lange proposed that every German community should establish heroes groves, planting there, in orderly rows, one oak tree for every fallen soldier from the community: “For each, who lost his life for Germany’s freedom; for the ideal of Germanness, with…

Submarine Warfare

(2,604 words)

Author(s): Rohwer, Jürgen
Submarine Warfare Grossadmiral Alfred von Tirpitz, secretary of state for the German Imperial Navy Bureau, was mainly interested in the battle fleet and initially had little regard for submarines. So the construction of U1 did not begin until 1904/1905, and, by the beginning of the First World War, only 28 submarines were in service in the German Navy. Of these, only the final ten were equipped with operationally safe diesel engines for running on the surface. Tirpitz’ intention at the beginning of the war was to use submarines for reconnaissance against the British Gra…

Luxembourg

(1,322 words)

Author(s): Majerus, Benoît
Luxembourg The First World War scarcely has a presence in the collective memory of Luxembourgers, and the country’s historians have until now shown little interest in the period. Luxembourg’s entry into the Zollverein (German Customs Union, 1842) engendered very close economic links between the Grand Duchy and the neighboring German territories. Luxembourg’s railways passed into German Reich ownership in 1872, and the rise of the iron industry was facilitated by both German capital (e.g. Gelsenkirchener Bergwerk AG) and German workers (more than half the foreigners livi…

Defending the Heimat: The Germans in South-West Africa and East Africa During the First World War

(12,890 words)

Author(s): Rouven Steinbach, Daniel
Rouven Steinbach, Daniel - Defending the Heimat: The Germans in South-West Africa and East Africa During the First World War Keywords: First World War | German East Africa | German Schutzgebiete | Heimat | South-West Africa ISFWWS-Keywords: Africa | East Africa | Germany | Society | Pre-war period | Culture | Home fronts Abstract: This chapter examines wartime mobilization of German settlers in Africa with particular reference to the German concept of Heimat. It focuses on the two German Schutzgebiete which had the largest white populations and that experienced the mo…

Paris Peace Conferences

(739 words)

Author(s): Schwabe, Klaus
Paris Peace Conferences In Paris between January 18 and June 28, 1919, peace conferences were held by the victorious powers of the First World War in order to make final decisions on a host of questions, and then to write them as regulations to which the signatories would be contractually obligated. Additionally the victorious powers would conclude so-called minority treaties with the allies of the German Empire after the signing of the Versailles Treaty. The Paris Peace Conferences were held in se…

Auxiliary Service Bill

(1,121 words)

Author(s): Mai, Gunther
Auxiliary Service Bill The Gesetz über den Vaterländischen Hilfsdienst, of December 5, 1916, imposed an obligation to work on all male Germans aged between 17 and 60 engaged in reserved occupations; the sectors affected included agriculture, health services, and public authorities. Originally demanded by the Operations Branch of the Supreme Army Command as an extension of conscription, the law was to provide for the employment of workers – including women – in armaments production (Hindenburg Program). As the Supreme Army Command did n…

Aircraft

(895 words)

Author(s): Schmidt, Wolfgang
Aircraft After the Wright brothers achieved lift with the aid of a propeller driven by a combustion engine and thus in 1903 completed the first powered flight, most industrial nations saw rapid improvements taking place in the technical reliability, endurance and range of airplanes. France, as the leading European aircraft builder, possessed 100 military planes as early as 1911, while Germany had only begun training military pilots in 1910 on planes purchased from private owners. The Prussian Gen…

‘The Germans Have Landed!’: Invasion Fears in the South-East of England, August to December 1914

(9,095 words)

Author(s): Pennell, Catriona
Pennell, Catriona - ‘The Germans Have Landed!’: Invasion Fears in the South-East of England, August to December 1914 Keywords: Essex population | First World War | German army | invasion | Southend-on-Sea ISFWWS-Keywords: Britain | Society | Pre-war period | Germany | Home fronts | Violence against civilians | Literature | Belgium | Politics Abstract: The British coastal town of Southend-on-Sea, Essex is situated less than one hundred miles away from Ostend. The primary reaction of the Essex population between August and December 1914 was…

Demobilization

(1,503 words)

Author(s): Bessel, Richard
Demobilization The task of bringing a society out of a state of war into one of peace is incomparably more difficult than that of releasing soldiers from war service. The term “demobilization” is used for both processes. When the Armistice came into force on November 11, 1918, some six million German soldiers stood under arms. The German economy was almost entirely geared to the requirements of the war; demobilization now had to be implemented in the middle of a political revolution that had shaken a defeated Germany. The German Army returns to Germany after the Ar…

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…

Letters From Captivity: The First World War Correspondence of the German Prisoners of War in the United Kingdom

(10,203 words)

Author(s): Feltman, Brian K.
Feltman, Brian K. - Letters From Captivity: The First World War Correspondence of the German Prisoners of War in the United Kingdom Keywords: correspondence | First World War | German prisoners | letters from captivity | Mecklenburgischer Hilfsverein | surrender | UK ISFWWS-Keywords: Prisoners of War | Germany | Literature | Masculinity | Home fronts | Published memoirs and biographies Abstract: This study aims to contribute to the growing field of scholarship concerned with the cultural implications of surrender and wartime captivity by sheddi…

Hindenburg Line

(426 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Hindenburg Line The name in British and French literature for the German defensive line on the Western Front in 1917/18, known in German as Siegfried-Stellung. After the close of the costly battles of 1916, the OHL (German Supreme Army Command) and the Army Group Kronprinz Rupprecht had decided to pull the front back to the Arras – Saint-Quentin – Vailly line. Their reasons had been strategic and operational: building on successes on the Eastern Front and in the unrestricted submarine war, the war in the West was to be waged defensively in…

Kessler, Harry Graf

(817 words)

Author(s): Riederer, Günter
Kessler, Harry Graf (May 5, 1868, Paris – November 30, 1937, Lyon), German author, journalist, politician and diplomat. Kessler spent his childhood and youth in France, Germany and England. After studying law in Bonn and Leipzig, he fulfilled his one-year military obligation serving with the 3rd Guard Uhlan Regiment in Potsdam. Kessler did not enter the diplomatic service as originally planned, owing to his developing talents and interests. He served instead as a patron of the arts, supporting arti…

Manifesto of the 93

(963 words)

Author(s): vom Bruch, Rüdiger
Manifesto of the 93 Published on October 4, 1914, an appeal addressed “to the civilized world” ( An die Kulturwelt! Ein Aufruf ) and endorsed by 93 German men of letters, scientists, scholars and artists, rejected as “untrue” allegations made by the Entente against the German “militarism” and atrocities verifiably committed by the German Army in neutral Belgium. The Manifesto followed numerous other, similar declarations made especially by well-known cultural figures on both sides in the “war of the minds” ( Krieg der Geister, the title of a 1915 collection of international es…

Bild- und Filmamt (Photo and Film Office)

(575 words)

Author(s): Brandt, Susanne
Bild- und Filmamt (Photo and Film Office) The Bild- und Filmamt (BUFA, “Photo and Film Office”) was created in January of 1917 by order of the Prussian War Ministry to facilitate and coordinate the use of film and photography for the German propaganda effort. As it formed part of the Supreme Army Command (OHL) and was also attached to the Military Department of the Foreign Office (Militärische Stelle des Auswärtigen Amtes, MAA), it reported to both institutions. Among other responsibilities the BUFA pr…

Elsa Brändström and the Reintegration of Returning Prisoners of War and their Families in Post-War Germany and Austria

(8,776 words)

Author(s): Stibbe, Matthew
Stibbe, Matthew - Elsa Brändström and the Reintegration of Returning Prisoners of War and their Families in Post-War Germany and Austria Keywords: Austrian society | Elsa Brändström | First World War | Germany | prisoners of war | women's activism ISFWWS-Keywords: Prisoners of War | Germany | Austria-Hungary | Russia | Scandinavia | Switzerland | The United States of America | Literature Abstract: Less is known about Elsa Brändström's contribution to the reintegration of returning POWs and their families in post-war German and Austrian society,…

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…

Railways

(539 words)

Author(s): Thoss, Bruno
Railways A means of mass transportation of persons and goods, developed in the 19th century, and adapted for military purposes in the second half of the century. The first extensive and operationally effective implementation of plans for the transportation of major bodies of troops by rail occurred in the wars of 1866 and 1870/1871. From that point on, all general staffs included the railways in their operational plans, and created specialized military units for the construction, safeguarding, an…

Military Chaplaincy

(856 words)

Author(s): Haidl, Roland
Military Chaplaincy (German Militärseelsorge), collective pastoral care for soldiers and other members of the armed forces. During the World War, both Christian confessions as well as the Jewish communities organized their own military chaplaincies on the basis of the two Prussian military church regulations of 1902 ( preussische militärkirchliche Dienstordnungen). In doing so, the German military chaplaincy underwent the greatest expansion of its entire history. The military chaplaincy was a state organization that was subordinated to the war…

Macedonia

(926 words)

Author(s): Loulos, Konstantin
Macedonia With the outbreak of the First World War, the multinational region of Macedonia became a battlefield of the Great Powers. Germany’s strategic goal of advancing eastwards and maintaining an open route to Turkey led to the establishment of the Balkan Front. For the various peoples living in the Balkans, this simultaneously represented a continuation of the struggle for Macedonia. This struggle resulted from a number of factors: the emergence of nationalisms in the 19th century, the founding of national states, and the all too be…

Renn, Ludwig

(569 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Thomas F.
Renn, Ludwig (April 22, 1889, Dresden – July 21, 1979, Berlin [East]; Arnold Friedrich Vieth von Golssenau), German author. Renn was born into a Saxon noble family. His father educated the royal Saxon princes. After his abitur, Renn began the typical officer’s career path. When war first broke out Renn welcomed it, serving as lieutenant of an infantry unit. Once positional warfare had commenced, however, his duties as regimental adjutant led him to doubt the moral and military meaning of warfare. Wounded and decorated several time…

Piłsudski, Józef Klemens

(325 words)

Author(s): Hecker, Hans
Piłsudski, Józef Klemens (December 5, 1867, Zułowo [now Zalavas, near Vilnius] – May 12, 1935, Warsaw), Polish politician and marshal. Co-founder of the Polish Socialist Party in 1892, Piłsudski was a determined opponent of Russia. He pursued the goal of a Polish federal republic on the model of the old Polish-Lithuanian Union, reaching far to the east and including non-Polish nationalities. This national revolutionary activist organized paramilitary groups from 1908 on and sent his forces over the…

Malvy, Louis-Jean

(370 words)

Author(s): Horne, John
Malvy, Louis-Jean (December 1, 1875, Figeac [Département Lot] – June 9, 1949, Paris), French politician. A radical socialist (and member of the French National Assembly from 1906), and a friend of Joseph Caillaux, Malvy was interior minister from the outbreak of the First World War until August 31, 1917, having already held that office in René Viviani’s prewar administration. He frequently demonstrated his trust in the patriotism of the labor movement, for example when, in August 1914, he refused …

Deployment Plans

(1,557 words)

Author(s): Bourne, John
Deployment Plans Deployment plans were plans for readying the mobilized units of a land army. To what degree the warring states of World War I actually sought after this conflict is one of the most intensively researched, and most sharply contended subjects of 20th century historiography. It is agreed, however, that most powers had worked out detailed mobilization and attack plans in case of war. These, they also realized to a greater or lesser degree when war broke out in August 1914. The war plans of the German Reich are customarily referred to as the Schlieffen Plan, even …

Toys, Games and Juvenile Literature in Germany and Britain During the First World War. A Comparison

(10,962 words)

Author(s): Müller, Sonja
Müller, Sonja - Toys, Games and Juvenile Literature in Germany and Britain During the First World War. A Comparison Keywords: Britain | First World War | games | Germany | juvenile literature | toys ISFWWS-Keywords: Children and War | Germany | Britain | Economy | Masculinity | Literature | Culture | Home fronts | Society | Violence against civilians Abstract: This chapter focuses on German and British children's daily lives during the First World War, particularly emphasizing their wartime experiences. It also focuses on individual toys and …

Desertion

(1,634 words)

Author(s): Jahr, Christoph
Desertion Denotes a soldier’s unauthorized absence from his unit, without the permission of his superior officers. Related offences are “unauthorized absence” and “defection to the enemy.” In common with all other legal offenses, desertion does not necessarily reflect objective circumstances, but depends on national legal provisions and their interpretation on a particular occasion, that is to say their practical application. In particular, the distinction between desertion, unauthorized absence, defection, refusal of wa…

Spain

(827 words)

Author(s): Albes, Jens
Spain This one-time world power had sunk to the level of a second-rate power after the 17th century. During the World War, however, it grew to become the most important neutral state of Europe. Favorably situated geo-strategically – two continents plus two oceans meeting at the Straits of Gibraltar – Spain constituted a veritable island of neutrality, surrounded by the warring states of France with Morocco, England with Gibraltar, and after March 1916 Portugal as well. That caused this land on the Iberian Peninsula to unexpectedly become the object of international interest. Despite co…

Wilhelm II, German Kaiser

(1,402 words)

Author(s): C.G. Röhl, John
Wilhelm II, German Kaiser ( January 27, 1859, Berlin – June 4, 1941, Doorn, Netherlands), German Kaiser and King of Prussia. Kaiser Wilhelm was characterized by Germany’s enemies during the First World War as an aggressive warmonger, the personification of the German lust for conquest. Not only among the Allied populace, showered as it was with bloodthirsty caricatures and poisonous propaganda, but also in well-informed government circles (not least in the White House), the war was seen simply as “t…

Maximilian, Prince of Baden

(1,091 words)

Author(s): Schwabe, Klaus
Maximilian, Prince of Baden ( July 10, 1867, Baden-Baden – November 6, 1925, Salem; real name: Maximilian Alexander Friedrich Wilhelm; also known as Max von Baden), German Reich Chancellor. The son of Prince Wilhelm of Baden, and last German Reich Chancellor before the collapse of the Wilhelmine Reich, Max von Baden became heir apparent to his childless cousin, Grand Duke Friedrich II of Baden, in 1907. After attending humanistisches Gymnasium (high school emphasizing classical studies) and studying law, the prince took up an officer’s career, which he dropped ag…

The ‘Rebirth of Greater Germany’: The Austro-German Alliance and the Outbreak of War

(9,858 words)

Author(s): Vermeiren, Jan
Vermeiren, Jan - The ‘Rebirth of Greater Germany’: The Austro-German Alliance and the Outbreak of War Keywords: Austro-Hungarian declaration | German war | Habsburg Monarchy | outbreak ISFWWS-Keywords: Germany | Austria-Hungary | Pre-war period | Home fronts | Politics | Society Abstract: This chapter examines the outbreak of Greater German euphoria at the start of the war and the altered Reich German perception (and more precisely, public depiction) of an ally previously seen as an anachronistic and mortally ill entity,…

Luring Neutrals: Allied and German Propaganda in Argentina during the First World War

(10,707 words)

Author(s): Tato, María Inés
Tato, María Inés - Luring Neutrals: Allied and German Propaganda in Argentina during the First World War ISFWWS-Keywords: South America | Economy | Literature | Culture | Britain | The United States of America | France | Germany | Naval Warfare World War I and Propaganda Troy R.E. Paddock , (2014) Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2014 e-ISBN: 9789004264571 DOI: 10.1163/9789004264571_016 © 2014 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Tato, María Inés

Mackensen, August von

(576 words)

Author(s): Afflerbach, Holger
Mackensen, August von (December 6, 1849, Haus Leipnitz [Kreis Wittenberg] – November 8, 1945, Burghorn [now part of Habighorst, Kreis Celle]), German field marshal. The son of an estate manager, Mackensen took part in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870/1871 before studying for two years in Halle and subsequently returning to the army, where he pursued a rapid and brilliant career as a cavalryman in spite of his not having attended the Kriegsakademie (War Academy). Among his assignments, his appointment as adjutant to Alfred von Schlieffen (1891) is particularly worthy…

Noske, Gustav

(415 words)

Author(s): Schulz, Petra
Noske, Gustav ( July 9, 1868, Brandenburg an der Havel – November 30, 1946, Hannover), German politician. Noske, a skilled basket maker, joined the union in 1885, and Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands (SPD, ‘Social Democratic Party of Germany’) in Brandenburg in 1886. In 1897 he took charge of the editorial staff of the Social Democratic newspapers in Königsberg and Chemnitz, gathering his first political experience at the local level. In 1906 he was first elected to the Reichstag, styling himself as an expert on household, colonial, and military affairs. Noske belonged to th…

Iron Nail Memorials

(671 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Gerhard
Iron Nail Memorials The creation of Iron Nail Memorials was initiated in Vienna on March 6, 1915, with the Eisern Wehrmann (‘Iron-clad Soldier’). Beginning in mid-1916 and then tapering off until the war’s end, individuals in Germany and Austria-Hungary also began making these crude, symbolic figures studded with nails, sometimes with metal shields as well. Others were occasionally made at the fronts, such as the Adler der Champagne (‘Eagle of Champagne’). Shield-studded iron nail memorials were also undertaken by schools after 1916 as part of a charitable init…

Heroic Sacrifice, Myth of

(791 words)

Author(s): Hüppauf, Bernd
Heroic Sacrifice, Myth of The word Opfer (‘victim’) has two different connotations in the German language. One can make an Opfer, a ‘sacrificial offering,’ by sacrificing a victim to the gods, and in extreme cases a human being can offer himself in sacrifice. In its other connotation, a person can become the passive victim or ‘target’ of fate, whether from decisions made by others or from unknown circumstances. In both connotations the word has been extensively used in the literature and public debates on the World War. This suggests that the word…

Judaism

(604 words)

Author(s): Sieg, Ulrich
Judaism In all the belligerent states, Jews strove to give evidence of national loyalty. It would be well, however, to take care before singling out a particular Jewish patriotism. Western European Jewry was already largely integrated before 1914. Its national engagement was self-evident, and by no means a form of “total assimilation.” Statements by Jewish organizations that are usually interpreted as an expression of Jewish “hyper-patriotism” can be understood against the background of the press…

Jellicoe, John R.

(609 words)

Author(s): Herwig, Holger H.
Jellicoe, John R. (December 5, 1859, Southampton – November, 20, 1935, London; Viscount of Scapa from 1918; Earl Jellicoe from 1915), British admiral. Jellicoe joined the Royal Navy in 1872 and took part in the Russo-Turkish War in 1877 as well as in the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion in 1900. As director of naval ordnance, he had been responsible for equipping HMS Dreadnought with heavy gunnery in 1905. Appointed rear admiral in 1907, Jellicoe was made Third Sea Lord in the following year and supervised the construction of 90 battleships, including eig…

Gaulle, Charles de

(360 words)

Author(s): Waechter, Matthias
Gaulle, Charles de (November 22, 1890, Lille – November 9, 1970, Colombey-les-Deux-Églises, Département Haute-Marne), French officer and politician. As a young officer, De Gaulle was decorated among other things, for Verdun. He fell prisoner to the Germans, and undertook several spectacular escape attempts. The World War came to have a special meaning for him, especially for his awareness of politics and history, and for his ideological formation. For De Gaulle, the Union sacrée achieved during the war became his lifelong ideal for a successful, domestic political or…

Nietzsche, Friedrich

(488 words)

Author(s): Hüppauf, Bernd
Nietzsche, Friedrich (October 15, 1844, Röcken – August 25, 1900, Weimar), German classicist and philosopher. It is rumored that German soldiers were sent into the field with Nietzsche’s Also sprach Zarathustra in their knapsacks. Nietzsche served as the representative for the new German philosophy, the founder of a philosophy of life in which the young war enthusiast was seeking to corroborate his image of war according to ideas and formulae. Most vindications of the war were related, albeit not always explicitly, to Nietzs…

Pamphlets

(390 words)

Author(s): Bohrmann, Hans
Pamphlets A single sheet of paper which is printed on both sides with a political, social, commercial, or other message and which is distributed free of charge to a wide public. The special newspaper editions containing breaking news that came in after the printing deadline may also be regarded as pamphlets. Such special editions were more frequent during the World War, since the actuality of the newspapers regularly lagged behind the pace of events in spite of multiple issues per day. A precise …

Compiègne

(335 words)

Author(s): Werth, German
Compiègne French town and railway junction on the River Oise, some 60 km northeast of Paris; in 1917 it became the seat of the French Headquarters (GQG) and later the site of the 1918 Armistice. On November 11, 1918, at around 5:20 am, the Armistice between the Entente represented by chief negotiator Marshal Ferdinand Foch, and the German Empire was signed in a wooded area near Compiègne. The act itself took place in a railway carriage parked in a siding that belonged to a disused railway gun emp…

Ludendorff, Erich

(775 words)

Author(s): Kitchen, Martin
Ludendorff, Erich (April 9, 1865, Kruszewnia [near Posen, now Poznań, Poland] – December 20, 1937, Tutzing), German general, and First Quartermaster General on the General Staff of the field army. Although he is often represented as the archetypal middle class technocrat, Ludendorff in fact sprang from the landed nobility. The son of an officer and landed estate owner, he was educated at an army cadet school. He received his officer’s commission in 1881, and in 1894 was appointed to the Imperial G…

Red Cross

(1,371 words)

Author(s): Mönch, Winfried
Red Cross The red cross on a white ground signifies neutrality in war, and thus protection. The Ottoman Empire introduced the alternative symbol of the red crescent on a white ground during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877/1878, and also used it during the First World War. The red crescent continues to be used by Muslim states in place of the red cross, in order to avoid using the Christian symbol. The associations that had assumed the voluntary, and most importantly unpaid, task of caring for the wounded in war, as well as preparing for that activity in peacetime, w…

Antisemitism

(880 words)

Author(s): Sieg, Ulrich
Antisemitism The First World War constituted a sharp turning point in the history of Antisemitism. It brought the radicalization of anti-Jewish stereotypes and gave rise to ideologies demanding the exclusion of Jews from what was perceived to be a völkisch (i.e. racially homogenous) German nation. The Burgfrieden (literally Fortress Truce: an agreement among political parties not to criticize the government or the war effort) declared by the Kaiser on August 4, 1914, was soon revealed to be no more than a “fair-weather” concept. In the very…

Greece

(1,698 words)

Author(s): Loulos, Konstantin
Greece While the real tragedy of the World War played out on Europe’s theaters of war, Greece remained neutral until 1917. This neutrality was above all benevolent toward the Central Powers – at least, as far as the head of state, King Constantine, was concerned. Since the monarch admired his brother-in-law Kaiser Wilhelm II as the personification of the German martial spirit, he refused to march off to war against the Central Powers. Thereupon, Greek Premier Eleftherios Venizelos advocated stron…

Reweaving the Urban Fabric: Multiethnicity and Occupation in Łodź, 1914–1918

(96 words)

Author(s): Hofmann, Andreas R.
Hofmann, Andreas R. - Reweaving the Urban Fabric: Multiethnicity and Occupation in Łodź, 1914–1918 Keywords: Poland | Russian Front | Economy | Society | Home fronts | Germany | Politics ‛Endangered Cities’ Marcus Funck and Roger Chickering, Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2004 e-ISBN: 9789047409812 DOI: 10.1163/9789047409812.006 © 2004 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Hofmann, Andreas R.

War Credits

(773 words)

Author(s): Zilch, Reinhold
War Credits War credits were one of the crucial means of financing the war. They were raised in various forms, by various methods, and in various amounts, by all belligerent nations at home and sometimes abroad. War credits were necessary because some elements of normal state receipts fell drastically upon the outbreak of war, while the financial burden abruptly multiplied. War credits were raised at home in the form of short- or long-term government bonds, or by increasing the amount of paper cur…

East Prussia

(793 words)

Author(s): Liulevicius, Vejas Gabriel
East Prussia In a single year of the war, 1914–1915, Russian troops overran two-thirds of East Prussia, the most eastern province of the German Reich. It would remain the only meaningful occupation of German territory. In August the Reich’s eastern border had remained only weakly defended in keeping with German operational plans so that the troops could first conduct a decisive attack in the West against France. Yet the Russian army mobilized more quickly than the German plans had envisioned. The …

Field Hospitals (Germany)

(707 words)

Author(s): Eckart, Wolfgang U.
Field Hospitals (Germany) At the start of the war, 12 field hospitals were available for each infantry corps, and four to eight reserve field hospitals for each reserve corps. Two replacement field hospitals were assigned to the replacement divisions, and in the winter of 1914–1915 two Territorial Army field hospitals were assigned to the Territorial Army brigades. A total of 461 Prussian, 64 Bavarian, 44 Saxon and 23 Württemberg field hospitals were set up (no new ones were created in 1918). In ad…

Falkenhausen, Ludwig Alexander Baron von

(303 words)

Author(s): Afflerbach, Holger
Falkenhausen, Ludwig Alexander Baron von (September 13, 1844, Guben – May 4, 1936, Görlitz), German general. Falkenhausen had been a soldier since 1862, and had taken part in the wars of 1866 and 1870/1871. As commanding general of the XIIIth Army Corps, he had been placed on the inactive list in 1902. Recalled to active service at his own request in 1914, onSeptember 15 he took over command of the Falkenhausen Division (from April 1916 Army Division A) that, after the end of the border engagements b…

Planning for the Endgame: The Central Powers, September 1916–April 1917

(10,180 words)

Author(s): Sondhaus, Lawrence
Sondhaus, Lawrence - Planning for the Endgame: The Central Powers, September 1916–April 1917 Keywords: Central Powers | Erich Ludendorff | Franz Conrad | Paul von Hindenburg | Western Front ISFWWS-Keywords: International Relations during the War | Germany | Austria-Hungary | The Military and Naval War | Italian-Austrian Front | Russian Front | Western Front | Naval Warfare | Economy Abstract: Between September 1916, when Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff were granted sweeping authority over the war effort of the Central Powers, and Apri…

Cambrai

(605 words)

Author(s): Werth, German
Cambrai City in the north of France on the canalized River Scheldt (L’Escaut). The “Tank Battle of Cambrai” in November of 1917 saw the first operational massed deployment of British tank forces – a veritable revolution on the battlefield. On November 20, after only a brief burst of fire and without the normal artillery preparation lasting several days, the newly-created British Tank Corps breached the German Hindenburg Line near Havrincourt. The 400 tracked vehicles were supported by six infantry and three …

Brändström, Elsa

(445 words)

Author(s): Hinz, Uta
Brändström, Elsa (March 26, 1888, Saint Petersburg – March 4, 1948, Cambridge MA), Swedish philanthropist and nurse. The daughter of the Swedish ambassador in Saint Petersburg, Brändström continued to be known throughout Europe long after her death; in Germany she enjoyed nearly saintly status as the “Angel of Siberia.” This veneration was bestowed on her for the courage and commitment she had shown in caring for German and Austrian prisoners of war in Russia, and above all for her personal humanitarian work in Russian camps between 1915 and 1920. Living in Saint Petersburg at the o…

German Southwest Africa

(920 words)

Author(s): Zimmerer, Jürgen
German Southwest Africa German colony on the Atlantic coast in southern Africa between Angola to the north, South Africa to the south, and Botswana to the east; the modern Namibia. Placed under the protection of the German Reich by Bismarck in 1884, German Southwest Africa was the only German African colony suited for substantial European settlement. Accordingly, the influx of German emigrants was actively encouraged. The arbitrary attitude of the German administration towards the African population was marked by a high degree of cruelty. Thus in the war agai…

War Welfare Office

(930 words)

Author(s): Verhey, Jeffrey
War Welfare Office Wide sections of the population that had never before been counted among the recipients of poor relief turned for help from the government care services. Many working women were dismissed from their jobs at the beginning of the war. These were joined by the families of soldiers and the surviving dependents of the fallen. The existing statutes in Germany, France, and Great Britain failed to fully address the real needs of those made poor by the war circumstances. The laws passed by the combatant nations early in the war still did not address the problem adequately. Wartime w…

The Mater Dolorosa on the Battlefield— Mourning Mothers in German Women’s Art of the First World War

(10,203 words)

Author(s): Siebrecht, Claudia
Siebrecht, Claudia - The Mater Dolorosa on the Battlefield— Mourning Mothers in German Women’s Art of the First World War Keywords: First World War | German women's art | maternal sacrifice ISFWWS-Keywords: Women and War | Visual Arts | Germany | Religion | Society | Home fronts Abstract: A predominant theme in women's art of the First World War is that of maternal sacrifice. Contemporary women's literature, short stories and poetry also present the experience of mothers sacrificing their sons for the fatherland as the most im…

War Press Office

(630 words)

Author(s): Albes, Jens
War Press Office (German Kriegspresseamt), a government department that was responsible for the control and censorship of the press in Germany. After the creation of the Central Censorship Office in February 1915, the German Supreme Army Command and the War Ministry intensified their efforts to exert a “positive” influence on the press. The visible expression of this policy was the establishment of the War Press Office on October 14, 1915, an agency that was directly subordinated to the Supreme Army…

Grosz, George (Georg Ehrenfried Grosz)

(447 words)

Author(s): Jürgens-Kirchhoff, Annegret
Grosz, George (Georg Ehrenfried Grosz) (July 26, 1893, Berlin – July 6, 1959, Berlin [West]), German graphic artist and painter. Like so many others, young Grosz applied in November 1914 for military service as a volunteer. As he later wrote that he was moved not by enthusiasm, but probably by the opportunity of choosing a regiment. As early as May 1915 he was discharged on health grounds as unfit for service. Fear of another call-up, which finally took place in January 1917, crippled Grosz’s artistic work. He remained however productive. In 1917 there appeared the First Georg Grosz Portf…

Strange Fronts, Strange Wars: Germany’s Battle for “Islam” in the Middle East during the First World War, and British Reactions

(12,391 words)

Author(s): Lüdke, Tilman
Lüdke, Tilman - Strange Fronts, Strange Wars: Germany’s Battle for “Islam” in the Middle East during the First World War, and British Reactions ISFWWS-Keywords: Religion | Politics | Middle East | The Ottoman Empire and the Middle East | Germany | Britain Other Fronts, Other Wars? Joachim Bürgschwentner, Matthias Egger and Gunda Barth-Scalmani , (2014) Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2014 e-ISBN: 9789004279513 DOI: 10.1163/9789004279513_019 © 2014 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Lüdke, Tilman

Internment in a Neutral Country: The Arrival of the Prisoners of War

(9,740 words)

Author(s): Wolf, Susanne
Wolf, Susanne - Internment in a Neutral Country: The Arrival of the Prisoners of War Keywords: Dutch | Germany | Great Britain | Hague treaty | internment | Netherlands | neutral country | prisoners of war (POW) Abstract: The treaty concluded between Germany and Great Britain allowed for the transfer of long-term and seriously ill Prisoners of war (POWs) from captivity into internment in the Netherlands. The idea of a neutral country volunteering to take on responsibility for sick and wounded soldiers from belli…

Wilhelm, German Crown Prince

(367 words)

Author(s): Schranz, Daniel
Wilhelm, German Crown Prince (May 6, 1882, Potsdam – July 20, 1951, Hechingen), crown prince of the German Reich and of Prussia. Wilhelm was born in 1882 as the first son of the later Kaiser Wilhelm II. He began his military career at the age of 14, interrupting it for a time to study political science in Bonn. In fall 1911 he was named commander of the First Life Guards Hussars Regiment in Danzig (Gdańsk). Though hardly qualified, he assumed command of the Fifth Army when war broke out in August 19…

Holtzendorff, Henning von

(337 words)

Author(s): Herwig, Holger H.
Holtzendorff, Henning von (January 9, 1853, Prenzlau – June 7, 1919, Jagow [Uckermark]), German grand admiral. Holtzendorff entered the navy in 1869, took part in the war of 1870/1871, and in 1900 served as commander of a capital ship during the Boxer Rebellion. After various commands on land (commander in chief of the navy, chief of staff of the Baltic Division, commander of the dockyard at Danzig [Gdańsk]), from 1906 to 1909 he was commander of the First Squadron, and in 1910 took command of the …

Gorlice-Tarnów, Battle of

(1,005 words)

Author(s): Stone, Norman
Gorlice-Tarnów, Battle of Two towns in Galicia (now situated in modern Poland). Even though the German Supreme Army Command was determined to decide the war in the West, developments in early 1915 brought the focus of attention to the East. The weaker the Austro-Hungarian army became, the more the German allies felt compelled to provide direct support. The situation deteriorated when Italy, hoping for territorial gains, threatened the Dual Monarchy with war. Now the German Eleventh Army (August von…

Hoeppner, Ernst von

(360 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Hoeppner, Ernst von (January 14, 1860, Tonnin Island of Wolin [now in Poland] – September 27, 1922, Gross-Mockratz, Island of Rügen), German general. Educated in the cadet corps, in 1879 Hoeppner entered the 6th Regiment of Dragoons, and was appointed major general in 1912. At mobilization he became chief of the general staff of the Third Army, leading its operations during the Battle of the Frontiers and on the Marne, until the Army entered the positional war. On February 14, 1915, Hoeppner took o…

South Tyrol

(754 words)

Author(s): Afflerbach, Holger
South Tyrol The part of the Tyrol situated south of the Brenner. Between August 1914 and May 1915, South Tyrol was disputed territory between the Italians and Italy’s Triple Alliance partners Austria-Hungary and the German Reich. At issue initially was Trentino (according to the census of 1910: 393,111 inhabitants, of whom 366,844 were speakers of Italian and Ladin, 13,893 German-speakers, 2,666 speakers of other languages, and 9,708 foreigners, the greater portion of them North Italians), then th…

New Writers, New Literary Genres (1914–1918): The Contribution of Historical Comparatism (France, Germany)

(9,272 words)

Author(s): Beaupré, Nicolas
Beaupré, Nicolas - New Writers, New Literary Genres (1914–1918): The Contribution of Historical Comparatism (France, Germany) Keywords: Literature | Experience of combat | French Army and its combattants | Germany | Culture | Intellectuals and the War | Legacy ‛Warfare and Belligerence’ Pierre Purseigle, Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2005 e-ISBN: 9789047407362 DOI: 10.1163/9789047407362.013 © 2005 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Beaupré, Nicolas

Paris, Berlin: War Memory in Two Capital Cities (1914–1933)

(12,440 words)

Author(s): Julien, Elise
Julien, Elise - Paris, Berlin: War Memory in Two Capital Cities (1914–1933) Keywords: Home fronts | Society | France | Germany | Legacy | Politics ‛Warfare and Belligerence’ Pierre Purseigle, Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2005 e-ISBN: 9789047407362 DOI: 10.1163/9789047407362.016 © 2005 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Julien, Elise

Denmark

(672 words)

Author(s): Bohn, Robert
Denmark Constitutional monarchy, ruler Christian X (ruled 1912–1947). Since the annexation of Schleswig-Holstein (1867) by the Prussian State, and the measures of Germanization in North Schleswig, the mood in Denmark had been decidedly anti-German. The army and navy were mobilized at the outbreak of war, owing to fears that, because of its control of access to routes to the Baltic, the country might become the target of British or German military operations. The Royal Navy, however, exercised res…

Soixante-Quinze

(621 words)

Author(s): Storz, Dieter
Soixante-Quinze French for 75. Nickname given to the M 1897 75 mm cannon, introduced in 1897 as the standard gun used by the French field artillery. The weapon combined several technical innovations, the most significant of which was the long barrel-recoil system. The energy of the recoil was no longer transmitted directly to the gun’s carriage; instead, the barrel slid on a cradle, which checked its backward motion by means of an integral braking device. At the end of the recoil stage the barrel…

Champagne

(1,284 words)

Author(s): Werth, German
Champagne With the onset of positional warfare the front between Reims and the Forest of Argonne became the theater for two major French offensives in 1915. The battles in Champagne saw the emergence of what came to be known in Germany as Materialschlachten (battles of matériel). These were characterized by artillery bombardments which would last for several days and would rise in intensity to the level of a continuous barrage ( Trommelfeuer). The intention was to bring about the utter demoralization and material attrition of the enemy, which would then be followed…

Brücken, Beethoven und Baumkuchen: German and Austro-Hungarian Prisoners of War and the Japanese Home Front

(8,584 words)

Author(s): Murphy, Mahon
Murphy, Mahon - Brücken, Beethoven und Baumkuchen: German and Austro-Hungarian Prisoners of War and the Japanese Home Front ISFWWS-Keywords: Asia | Germany | Prisoners of War | Published memoirs and biographies | Home fronts | Politics Other Fronts, Other Wars? Joachim Bürgschwentner, Matthias Egger and Gunda Barth-Scalmani , (2014) Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2014 e-ISBN: 9789004279513 DOI: 10.1163/9789004279513_007 © 2014 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands Murphy, Mahon

Foreign Representatives in the Netherlands 1914–1918

(201 words)

Author(s): Wolf, Susanne
Wolf, Susanne - Foreign Representatives in the Netherlands 1914–1918 Keywords: foreign representatives | Netherlands | Germany | Great Britain | Belgium | France Abstract: This chapter contains Appendix Two of this book on diplomacy and internment in the Netherlands during the First World War</i>. It presents a list of foreign representatives in the Netherlands 1914-1918. This list includes the names of representatives of Germany, Great Britain, Belgium and France. Guarded Neutrality Susanne Wolf, (2013) Publication Editor: Brill, The Netherlands, 2013 e-ISBN: 9789004249066 D…

Clemenceau, Georges Benjamin

(982 words)

Author(s): Becker, Jean-Jacques
Clemenceau, Georges Benjamin (September 28, 1841, Mouilleron-en-Pareds, département Vendée – November 24, 1929, Paris), French politician (prime minister). If French contemporary history remembers two exceptional personalities with particular fondness, it is Charles de Gaulle and Clemenceau, nicknamed “le tigre” partly on account of his facial features. Also known as “Père-la-Victoire,” Father (of ) Victory, Clemenceau still enjoys an enormous popularity in France today thanks to the feat he accomp…

Battlefield Tourism

(601 words)

Author(s): Brandt, Susanne
Battlefield Tourism This term covers visits both to former war locations and landscapes and to military cemeteries of the First World War. The majority of “battlefield tourists” during the 1920s and 1930s were relatives of the fallen. Every French citizen, for example, received a free railway pass every year to visit the military cemeteries. The English travel bureau Thomas Cook specialized in accompanying British visitors to the cemeteries and memorials in Belgium and France, which had begun to be constructed soon a…

Gallipoli

(1,150 words)

Author(s): Prior, Robin | Wilson, Trevor
Gallipoli A peninsula bordering on the Dardanelles. The military conflict at Gallipoli was a direct consequence of the failed naval operation in the Dardanelles. The British leadership wished to make up for this reverse by conducting a landing operation on the northern Turkish coast. This was remarkable inasmuch as it had always argued in front of the War Council that the great advantage of the Dardanelles operation lay in the fact that it could easily be called off in the event of a failure. It …

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…

Uniforms

(1,390 words)

Author(s): Kraus, Jürgen
Uniforms At the beginning of the war, the armies of most warring states were outfitted with a special field uniform, camouflaged to blend into the terrain, in addition to their colorful parade uniforms. Such a camouflage uniform was necessary because of modern weapons technology including smokeless powder. This was already well known from the Boer Wars and the Russo-Japanese War. Still, camouflage uniforms dated back to the colonial wars of the 19th century. Based on experience in India, Great Br…

Veterans’ and Reservists’ Associations

(619 words)

Author(s): Rohrkrämer, Thomas
Veterans’ and Reservists’ Associations With the introduction of general conscription, associations of former soldiers, which had previously existed only as professional organizations, became socially influential bodies. The first soldiers’ or war veterans’ associations appeared soon after the beginning of the 19th century, but it was not until after the wars of unification and the founding of the German Reich in 1871 that such organizations became widespread in Germany. First there arose in all part…

Prisoners of War

(3,043 words)

Author(s): Hinz, Uta
Prisoners of War Persons with the status of combatants who fell into enemy hands during the war. Only rough estimates of the total number of prisoners of war can be given for the World War. It is assumed that some 6.6 to 8 million soldiers were taken captive, which represents at least 10% of the approximately 60 million soldiers who were mobilized during the war. By late 1918, according to statistics from the interwar period, 328,000 soldiers had been captured by the British, 350,000 by the French,…

Vivat Ribbons

(248 words)

Author(s): Gross, Gerhard P.
Vivat Ribbons Dedicatory and commemorative ribbons, imprinted with verses, that were distributed on special informal, court, business, or military occasions. Vivat Ribbons were usually narrow cloth ribbons from 30 cm to as much as 3 m long, and about 3–12 cm wide. First appearing in 18th century Prussia, they eventually spread to the rest of Germany as well as Austria-Hungary. Vivat Ribbons commemorating the First World War tended to measure about 40 cm × 6.5 cm. They were typically printed on the shiny side with Vivat followed by the date, and then the occasion. To this would be…

Occupation (West)

(1,527 words)

Author(s): Kramer, Alan
Occupation (West) Occupation is the temporary authority over foreign territory during war. According to international law, a territory is considered occupied when “it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army” ( Hague Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, Article 42). Not to be viewed as occupation are the systems of government in Ireland, Alsace-Lorraine, the non-Russian part of the Tsarist Empire etc., even though their administrations developed techniques of asserting their authority which resemble…

Reparations

(2,115 words)

Author(s): Geyer, Martin H.
Reparations Since the First World War the normal term for war compensation, by which a state is obliged to remedy damage illicitly caused by it on the sovereign territory of an enemy. In contrast to the traditional practice whereby financial obligations were imposed by the victors in a war in the form of tribute, the concept of reparations introduced the new idea that a state must pay for the damage it has caused another state by an illegal act. The first use in a treaty of the concept réparation des dommages (compensation for damages), drawn from French civil law, was in the cease-f…

Sub-Saharan Africa

(719 words)

Author(s): Zimmerer, Jürgen
Sub-Saharan Africa Africa without the Arab North, and without the settler colonies in the South. Sub-Saharan Africa was both a theater of war and a source for the recruitment of soldiers and laborers during the First World War. The main areas fought over were the German colonies of Togo, Cameroon, and German East Africa, as their capture would enable the wireless stations located there to be destroyed, and their harbors neutralized as bases for the German Navy. When British and French forces occup…

Caucasian Front

(1,438 words)

Author(s): Cem Oguz, C.
Caucasian Front Between 1914 and 1918 the Ottoman Empire fought on more than half a dozen fronts that were spread out over a vast geographical area, but the Caucasian Front was given high priority in the plans of the Minister of War Enver Pasha – as indicated by the fact that he increased the number of troops in the region at the beginning of the war and placed himself in command of the Ottoman Third Army in eastern Anatolia. Contrary to the original plan, the Third Army received reinforcements fr…

Naval Arms Race

(1,316 words)

Author(s): Krüger, Friederike
Naval Arms Race When he ascended the throne in 1888, Kaiser Wilhelm II was determined to practice Weltpolitik. His instrument of choice to achieve this aim would be a strong battle fleet. With the appointment of Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz as secretary of state for the German Imperial Naval Office in 1897, the Kaiser found an officer who was willing to implement the Kaiser’s ambitious plans, and to manipulate public opinion to that purpose. Already in the years prior to his appointment, Tirpitz had in several mem…

Hutier, Oskar von

(357 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Hutier, Oskar von (August 27, 1857, Erfurt – December 5, 1934, Berlin), German general. Hutier was educated in a cadet school. He joined the Infantry Regiment No. 88 as a lieutenant in 1875. After a successful career in headquarters and field units, Hutier was appointed major-general in 1910 and chief quartermaster of the Great General Staff one year later. In 1912, having risen to the rank of lieutenant-general he assumed command of the 1st Guards Division, with which he went to war in 1914. As pa…

Sweden

(696 words)

Author(s): Bohn, Robert
Sweden Constitutional monarchy, King Gustav V (r. 1907–1950). The foreign and security policy of Swedish governments and the political elites developed between 1914 and 1918 from initially strong support for the German Reich to a gradual turn towards the Entente Powers, particularly Great Britain. Throughout those four years, however, political life was constantly under the shadow of Russia, felt in Sweden to be the traditional enemy. Many Swedes still failed to come to terms with the loss of Fin…
▲   Back to top   ▲