Tag Archives: Germany
This revision podcast focuses on the ‘Eastern Question’ that affected the Balkans and threatened the European balance of power from the late 19th Century to the early 20th. The episode stretches from the impact of the Congress of Berlin in 1878 to the Balkan Wars of 1912-13. Particular focus is given to the rise nationalism and Pan-Slavism in the Balkan states and the effects of the Bosnian Crisis of 1908-9.
This revision podcast provides an overview of the July Crisis of 1914 that acted as the spark to World War One. The episode begins with the events of 28th June when Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary was assassinated by the Black Hand Gang. It then goes on to explore the impact of the assassination on the diplomatic actions of Germany and Austria-Hungary, including the ‘blank cheque’. Finally, the podcast describes the actions of Russia, France and Britain as the major nation states of Europe fell in to war.
Beginning with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary, this video explores the 6-week period known as the July Crisis. It explains the concept of Germany’s ‘Blank Cheque’ and how the alliance system caused the nations of Europe to become embroiled in what was now a ‘world’ war. Reference is made to the Schlieffen Plan and how this led to Britain’s declaration of war.
This is a different type of revision podcast as, rather than covering the details of events, it aims to provide a summary of key historians’ interpretations of them. The podcast tracks the changing historiography of responsibility for the First World War over time. Beginning with the attitude at the time of the Versailles Treaty, the podcast summarises the shift in interpretation through the inter-war period, the effect of World War 2, the 1960s and the Fischer Thesis, and post-Fischer revisionism. Historians whose work is briefly mentioned include G. Lowes Dickinson, Sidney Fay, AJP Taylor, Luigi Albertini, Fritz Fischer, Niall Ferguson and John Keegan.
This low-budget (but reasonably informative) video presents an overview of the events that led to the Franco-Prussian War and the subsequent German unification.
This short video explains how Von Moltke’s planning enabled speedy Prussian mobilisation by using the railway network.
On the 18th January 1871, Wilhelm I of Prussia was proclaimed the first German Emperor. The creation of the federal Empire made Wilhelm the head of state and president of the federated monarchies that made up the 27 constituent territories.
Wilhelm had been made the President of the North German Confederation on its formation in 1867, and during the Franco-Prussian War took a leading role in the command of the German forces. With patriotic fervour as a result of the enormously successful German advance, in November 1870 the remaining states south of the river Main joined the North German Confederation.
The next month, on the 10th December, the Reichstag of the Confederation renamed itself the German Empire. Wilhelm was formally declared the German Emperor in the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles on the 18th January. The title was accepted grudgingly by Wilhelm who would have preferred “Emperor of Germany” rather than “German Emperor”, but Bismarck warned that this would be dangerous as it suggested he had a claim to other Germanic lands such as Austria, Luxembourg and Switzerland. He also refused to be titled “Emperor of the Germans”, since this would have suggested he ruled with permission from the German people rather than by “the grace of God”. As a believer in divine right, this suggestion was unacceptable to him.
Three months later, on the 14th April, the Reichstag adopted the German Constitution. This stated that the King of Prussia would be the permanent President of the confederation of states that formed the Empire. Therefore, the role of Emperor was directly tied to the Prussian crown.
An explanation of the causes of the First World War…sheer brilliance.