Brill’s Digital Library of World War I

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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…

Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia

(545 words)

Author(s): Lindemann, Mechthild
Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia (May 18, 1868, Tsarskoye Selo [Puschkin] – July 16, 1918, Yekaterinburg [murdered]), Tsar of Russia from 1894–1917. Nicholas saw his lifelong, God-given mission to be the preservation of his autocratic power so as to pass it on, undiminished, to his successor. He was strengthened in this point of view by the Tsarina Alexandra Fjodorovna. He thus did not feel authorized to yield to the demands of society’s elites for a voice and participation in his political authority.…

Internment

(1,392 words)

Author(s): Hinz, Uta
Internment During the World War, the notion of internment referred both to the sheltering of sick or invalid war prisoners in neutral states and to coercive measures against so-called enemy aliens. This conceptual ambiguity resulted from the fact that the large-scale repressive measures carried out against the civilian citizens of enemy countries were a relatively recent phenomenon. The reason for this was a fundamental redefinition of the “enemy” that went far beyond any military conception. As …

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…

Bulgaria

(1,164 words)

Author(s): Höpken, Wolfgang
Bulgaria In the Balkan Wars of 1912–1913 Bulgaria had not been able to fulfill its hopes of creating an “ethnographic” Bulgaria that would include Macedonia, parts of Thrace and the Dobrudja. In the 1913 Treaty of Bucharest it was moreover forced to concede to its neighbors practically all the territory it had captured in the First Balkan War of 1912. The outbreak of the First World War seemed to offer a new opportunity for the military realization of a “Greater Bulgaria,” a dream pursued since t…

Grey, Sir Edward

(405 words)

Author(s): Winter, Jay
Grey, Sir Edward (April 25, 1862, Fallodon, County of Northumberland – September 7, 1933, Fallodon; from 1916 First Viscount Grey of Fallodon), British politician. Grey was foreign secretary from 1905 to 1916, and chief architect of Britain’s foreign policy before the war. After studying at Balliol College, Oxford, he was elected to the House of Commons in 1885 as Liberal member of parliament for the constituency of Berwick-upon-Tweed. Grey retained this seat for his entire political career. As par…

Haus, Anton Freiherr von

(355 words)

Author(s): Herwig, Holger H.
Haus, Anton Freiherr von (June 13, 1851, Tolmin – February 8, 1917, Pola [Pula]), Austro-Hungarian grand admiral. Haus entered the Austro-Hungarian Navy in 1869, and in 1901, as commander of the cruiser Maria Theresia, took part in the suppression of the Boxer Rebellion. Between 1902 and 1905 he served as chairman of the presiding council in the Naval Section of the War Ministry. He became rear admiral in 1905, commander of the Second Division in 1906, and in 1907 was a delegate at the second peace conference in The Hague. He b…

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…

Delbrück, Hans

(333 words)

Author(s): Cornelissen, Christoph
Delbrück, Hans (November 11, 1848, Bergen [Rügen] – July 14, 1929, Berlin), German historian and political commentator. Delbrück had become known before 1914 as an advocate both of Germany’s world role, and of internal and socio-political reform. Politically, the historian was identified with the Free Conservative Party. Appointed to Berlin University as successor to Heinrich von Treitschke in 1896, he achieved particular distinction with his four-volume History of Warfare in the Context of Political History 1900–1920 ( Geschichte der Kriegskunst im Rahmen der politische…

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 included Iceland a…

Naval Cabinet ( Marinekabinett )

(353 words)

Author(s): Herwig, Holger H.
Naval Cabinet ( Marinekabinett ) The German Naval Cabinet was founded on April 1, 1889, as a joint military-civilian bureau to handle the human resources tasks of the naval officer corps. The new cabinet was placed under the initial leadership of Naval Captain Freiherr Gustav von Senden-Bibran. Candidates for the top command levels of the German navy were chosen in full accordance with the recommendations of the chief of the Naval Cabinet, who enjoyed direct access to the Kaiser. Accordingly the cabinet chief bo…

Polivanov, Alexei Andreyevich

(212 words)

Author(s): Dahlmann, Dittmar
Polivanov, Alexei Andreyevich (March 16, 1855, [unknown] – September 25, 1920, Riga), Russian general (minister of war). Polivanov was a graduate of the Nikolaevsky Engineering Academy (1880) and the General Staff Academy (1888). Between 1899 and 1904 he was active on the General Staff, where he was editor in chief of the journal Voenny Sbornik (War Digest). Chief of the Army Headquarters Staff in 1905/1906, and deputy war minister between 1906 and 1912, Polivanov was close to the bourgeois parties in the Imperial Duma during these years. This even…

Reichsbund Jüdischer Frontsoldaten

(289 words)

Author(s): Sieg, Ulrich
Reichsbund Jüdischer Frontsoldaten Reich Federation of Jewish Front Soldiers. Founded in early 1919 by Captain Leo Löwenstein, this veterans’ organization worked primarily to counter the disparagement of Jewish World War patriotism. The organization’s local chapters quickly gained a following, especially among Jewish liberals. During the Kapp Putsch of 1920 and the Berlin Scheunenviertel ( Jewish Quarter) Riot of 1923, members defended the Jewish residents against Antisemitic attacks. In 1925 the Reichsbund jüdischer Frontsoldaten counted as the …

Catholicism

(584 words)

Author(s): Haidl, Roland
Catholicism A view and attitude influenced by the Catholic Church and oriented to it, but not to be unconditionally equated with the Catholic Church as an institution. Within the German Reich before 1914 the Catholic Church, with just 40% of all Christian believers, constituted a political minority within the society of the Reich and was especially influential in the Center Party. The World War threw Catholicism in the warring European states into an insoluble dilemma. On the one hand, the Catholic Church maintained its claim to universalism. It was…

Baltic States

(1,258 words)

Author(s): Dahlmann, Dittmar
Baltic States The countries of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia are collectively known as the Baltic States. In 1914 they were part of the Russian Empire. In power-political terms, the Baltic States were repeatedly exposed to the expansionist pressure put on them by their larger neighbors: Germany, Russia, Poland, and Scandinavia. At the beginning of the First World War, the Latvian delegate to the Duma J. Goldmanis delivered a declaration of loyalty to the Russian government. Even though opposition movements existed, especially movements of the …

Prittwitz und Gaffron, Maximilian von

(293 words)

Author(s): Afflerbach, Holger
Prittwitz und Gaffron, Maximilian von (November 27, 1848, Bernstadt – March 29, 1917, Berlin), German general. Prittwitz came from an old military family, and in peacetime had a rapid and brilliant career. Yet even before the war, doubts were expressed about the military capacity of the “thick soldier” (his nickname). He was criticized for his rough manners and his excessive nervousness. Therefore as commander of the XIVth Infantry Corps in Metz, capable chiefs of staff were chosen to support him. Wh…

Kolchak, Aleksandr Vasiliyevich

(329 words)

Author(s): Brand, Bettina
Kolchak, Aleksandr Vasiliyevich (November 16, 1874, Saint Petersburg – February 7, 1920, Irkutsk), Russian admiral. Kolchak, a Russian naval officer, took part in polar expeditions in 1900–1903 and 1908–1911 and acquired a reputation as a hydrologist. He commanded a minelayer in the Russo-Japanese War, and was captured. After the beginning of the First World War in 1914, he also initially led mine-laying operations in the Baltic. Kolchak was then appointed in July 1916 to the command of the Black S…

Erzberger, Matthias

(506 words)

Author(s): Haidl, Roland
Erzberger, Matthias (September 20, 1875, Buttenhausen [now part of Münsingen] – August 26, 1921 [assassinated], near Bad Griesbach [now Bad Peterstal-Griesbach]), German politician. Erzberger was a Center Party member of the Reichstag from 1903. Influenced by South German Catholicism, before the First World War he favored fundamental reform of the state; he decidedly rejected cooperation with the Social Democrats. After the outbreak of war, Erzberger used his connections (to include the Roman Curi…

Dmowski, Roman

(258 words)

Author(s): Hecker, Hans
Dmowski, Roman (August 9, 1864, Kamionek [near Warsaw] – January 2, 1939, Drozdowo [near Łomża]), Polish politician and commentator. As leader of the right-leaning National Democratic Party ( Narodowa Demokracja – ND) and member of the Russian Duma, Dmowski advocated a future Poland as a centralist-democratic national state, occupying large parts of the German Reich, and with close ties to a liberal-democratic Russia. He combined his commitment to the creation of a Polish state with a decidedly anti-German position (“Piasti…

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…

Briand, Aristide

(480 words)

Author(s): Mollenhauer, Daniel
Briand, Aristide (March 28, 1862, Nantes – March 7, 1932, Paris), French politician (prime minister). For a period of more than 30 years Briand remained one of the most influential politicians in France; serving as a deputy in the National Assembly without interruption from 1902 to his death. He was a member of 25 governments, in various posts, and held the office of prime minister several times (e.g. between October of 1915 and March of 1917 in two separate cabinets of the “union sacrée”). Briand…

Nationalities Question

(1,312 words)

Author(s): Hecker, Hans
Nationalities Question The nationalities question in Eastern and Southeastern Europe developed in the course of the 19th century from the greatly mixed population that inhabited Russia, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire, and Prussia in the German Reich, plus the newly independent states of Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, Bulgaria, and Greece – a great variety of nationalities, with their different languages, religions, cultures, and interests. Although the murder of the Austro-Hungarian he…

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…

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…

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…

Reconnaissance

(522 words)

Author(s): Schmidt, Wolfgang
Reconnaissance Military procedure by which information is gathered about the enemy situation as well as terrain and weather conditions; it is a vital prerequisite for the decision-making processes on all levels of command. In addition to peace-time intelligence gathering, war-time reconnaissance operations were broken down according to the type of theater or battlefield into long-range, short-range and battlefield, or combat, reconnaissance. While the purpose of long-range reconnaissance was to c…

Kemal Pasha, Mustafa

(630 words)

Author(s): Hebestreit, Oliver
Kemal Pasha, Mustafa (March 12, 1881, Salonica [Thessalonika] – November 10, 1938, Istanbul; from 1934 Atatürk), Ottoman general and Turkish politician (state president). After completing training at the Military Academy ( Harbiye Harp Okulu) in 1902, Kemal Pasha was active as a young officer in the resistance against the regime of Sultan Abdul Hamid II. In 1905 he founded a secret military society that later amalgamated with the self-styled patriotic movement of the Young Turks under Enver Pasha. In 1908/1909, he took part in …

Switzerland

(960 words)

Author(s): Pöhlmann, Markus
Switzerland Switzerland experienced the First World War as a small state in an exposed, central geographical position. The Swiss government responded to the tense European situation by proclaiming general mobilization on August 1, 1914, and three days later the neutrality of the Swiss Confederation. The traditional pillars of the state’s self-conception and territorial defenses alike were perpetual neutrality and the readiness to defend that neutrality militarily by means of a militia army. Corps…

Heinrich (Henry), Prince of Prussia

(395 words)

Author(s): Schranz, Daniel
Heinrich (Henry), Prince of Prussia (August 14, 1862, Potsdam – April 20, 1929, Hemmelmark [now belonging to Barkelsby]), German grand admiral. Heinrich was born in 1862 the second son of the future Kaiser Friedrich III. At the age of 15 he became the only Prussian prince to embark upon a military career in the Imperial Navy. After completing naval college Heinrich was promoted lieutenant commander in 1882. He was given his first command, a torpedo boat, in 1886. This was followed by a series sea-goi…

Lloyd George, David

(667 words)

Author(s): Cornelissen, Christoph
Lloyd George, David (January 17, 1863, Manchester – March 26, 1945, Llanystumdwy [Gwynedd]; from 1945 First Earl of Dwyfor), British statesman. This Welsh politician was one of the dominant figures on the British political scene during the First World War. Thanks to his extraordinary rhetorical talent, from the time of his first election to the House of Commons (lower house of parliament) in 1890 Lloyd George quickly made a name for himself as one of the leaders of the radical wing of the Liberal P…

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…

Jaurès, Jean

(450 words)

Author(s): Mollenhauer, Daniel
Jaurès, Jean (September 3, 1859, Castres – July 31, 1914, Paris [assassinated]), French politician and political commentator. He came from a middle-class family in southwest France, and was probably the most important French Socialist of the prewar period. Originally Professor of Philosophy at Toulouse, he was not only active as parliamentarian, party leader and political commentator. As no one else, he also successfully programmatically left his mark on the French Socialist movement as a theorist and historian. Jaurès’s thinking and action revolved around the two poles …

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…

Dehmel, Richard

(464 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Thomas F.
Dehmel, Richard (November 18, 1863, Wendisch-Hermsdorf [near Sagan] – February 8, 1920, Blankenese [now part of Hamburg]), German writer. As poet and dramatist, Dehmel was one of the most influential German-speaking writers of the turn of the century. An opponent of naturalism, and the antithesis of Stefan George and Arno Holz, he was seen by his contemporaries as the only writer capable of adequately translating Nietzsche’s philosophy of life into poetry, and, with his emphasis on human sensualit…

Schlieffen Plan

(985 words)

Author(s): Cornelissen, Christoph
Schlieffen Plan Right up to the outbreak of the war in August 1914, the memorandum submitted by Count Alfred von Schlieffen in the winter of 1905/1906 outlined the basic strategic conception with which the German Reich entered the First World War – albeit in a version that had been modified several times by Helmuth von Moltke (the Younger). Although the significance of the Schlieffen Plan has been radically challenged in recent historical research (Zuber, 2002), the plan’s offensive strategy has r…

Geneva Convention

(612 words)

Author(s): Dülffer, Jost
Geneva Convention The Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field of August 22, 1864, is one of the most important human rights agreements still in force. In place of the regulations once agreed upon as necessary for each new war, there was now a permanent treaty. Its inspiration can be traced back to the great number of wounded soldiers who died after battles owing to poor medical care during both the Crimean War of 1854–1856 and the Second Italian War…

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…

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 …

The Junior Partner: Anglo-American Military Cooperation in World War I

(11,458 words)

Author(s): Grotelueschen, Mark E.
Grotelueschen, Mark E. - The Junior Partner: Anglo-American Military Cooperation in World War I Keywords: AEF operations | American Military operations | British leaders | war | Wilson's stature ISFWWS-Keywords: Military organisation of combat | Experience of combat | The United States of America | International Relations during the War | Peacemaking and Continued Conflict | Politics | Soldiers and Combat | Britain Abstract: This essay examines the connection between American military operations on the Western Front and the impact of those operati…

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 …

Beneš, Edvard

(414 words)

Author(s): Hadler, Frank
Beneš, Edvard (May 28, 1884, Kožlany, Bohemia – September 3, 1948, Sezimovo Ústí, South Bohemian Region), Czechoslovak politician. Beneš was his country’s first minister of foreign affairs (1918–1935). In 1921–1922 he simultaneously held the office of prime minister before succeeding Tomáš Masaryk as president (1935–1938). From 1940 he headed the Czechoslovak government-in-exile in London and finally became president of Czechoslovakia following the renewal of the country in the wake of World War I…

Zimmerwald Movement

(467 words)

Author(s): Mühlhausen, Walter
Zimmerwald Movement An alliance of antiwar Socialists from the belligerent states, named after the town where it first met (September 5–8, 1915, at Zimmerwald near Bern). The aim of the movement, which came to symbolize socialist pacifism, was to revive international cooperation, which had been disrupted by the First World War. The first conference was initiated by the Swiss social democrat Robert Grimm, and those attending included Lenin and Zinoviev for the Russian Social Democratic Workers’ Party, and Adolph Hoffmann …

Hague Land Warfare Convention

(285 words)

Author(s): Renz, Irina
Hague Land Warfare Convention By Hague Land Warfare Convention one means the text of the Hague article concerning The Laws and Customs of War on Land. This article was the fourth of thirteen articles signed on October 18, 1907, along with the final declarations, at the conclusion of the Second International Peace Conference at The Hague. Forty-four nations had taken part in the conference, convened at the suggestion of Tsar Nicholas II. Article IV was ratified by most warring states of the First World War. In December 1911 the text of Article IV on The Laws and Customs of War on Land was includ…

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 …

Finland

(2,352 words)

Author(s): Wegner, Bernd
Finland This small country (1910: 2.94 million inhabitants) located at the northeastern periphery of Europe entered the First World War as an autonomous grand duchy within the Russian Empire, and emerged from it an independent republic and parliamentary democracy. The process was not foreseeable, and by no means straightforward. Apart from the final months of the civil war, the sea change in the country’s status was primarily the result of external events – October Revolution, Peace of Brest-Lito…

Gerlach, Hellmut von

(485 words)

Author(s): Holl, Karl
Gerlach, Hellmut von (February 2, 1866, Mönchmotzelnitz [near Wohlau, Silesia] – August 1, 1935, Paris), German journalist, jurist, and politician. As a member of the German Reichstag from 1903 to 1907 (in informal affiliation with the Freisinnige Vereinigung [Free-minded Union]), and since the turn of the century a collaborator and later editor in chief of the Sunday newspaper Welt am Sonntag, Gerlach went from being a follower of Adolf Stöcker to an advocate of a social-liberal and democratically oriented power state – a transformation that took place …

Interparty Committee of the Reichstag

(518 words)

Author(s): Mai, Gunther
Interparty Committee of the Reichstag A coalition committee formed by the political fractions of the Reichstag’s majority and uniting the German Central Party, the Progressive People’s Party, and the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), and temporally also the National Liberal Party. The Interparty Committee of the Reichstag became an informal yet politically influential power factor that was acknowledged as such by the government. It was constituted on July 6, 1917, in the midst of the controve…

Constantine I, King of Greece

(389 words)

Author(s): Loulos, Konstantin
Constantine I, King of Greece (August 2, 1868, Athens – February 11, 1923, Palermo). The first-born son of George I and of Russian Grand-Duchess Olga, Constantine married Princess Sophia of Prussia in 1889 and thereby became a brother-in-law of Kaiser Wilhelm II, whom he personally admired along with his authoritarian rule. As the commander in chief of the Greek army, he had subsequently been partly responsible for a serious defeat during the Greco-Turkish War of 1896/1897. Suspected of nepotism, Con…

The Ukraine

(688 words)

Author(s): Lindemann, Mechthild
The Ukraine Borderland at the edge of the steppes, north of the Black Sea and east of the Carpathian Mountains. Until the 17th century the Western Ukraine (Galicia) had belonged to the Polish crown; after 1772 it belonged to Austria. The Eastern Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire. The commencement of the war in 1914 made the Ukrainian Question into an international issue. However, it also placed the Ukraine between war fronts. On August 1, 1914, the All-Party Supreme Ukrainian Council pledged …

Sexuality

(1,427 words)

Author(s): Sauerteig, Lutz
Sexuality The crisis-related effects of the World War also had consequences for the sexual life of human beings. The separation of (married and non-married) couples became a mass phenomenon of hitherto unknown extent. Extramarital sexuality and prostitution reached new dimensions. Even though the frequency with which soldiers sought extramarital contacts during the war cannot be assessed with precision, a number of indications suggest that soldiers no longer felt bound to middle-class sexual morals as a result of their direct experiencing of war and death. The debate over issue…
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