What was the context in which the Weimar Republic was formed? Flashcards Preview

A level History- Germany 1918-1989 > What was the context in which the Weimar Republic was formed? > Flashcards

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1

German Empire- 1871-1919

>The state known as Germany was unified as a modern nation-state in 1871, when the German Empire was
forged, with the Kingdom of Prussia as its largest constituent. After the French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War, the German Empire was proclaimed in Versailles on 18 January 1871. The Hohenzollern dynasty of Prussia ruled the new empire, whose capital was Berlin. The empire was a unification of all the scattered
parts of Germany except Austria (Kleindeutschland, or "Lesser Germany"). Beginning in 1884, Germany
began establishing several colonies outside of Europe.

>In the Gründerzeit period following the unification of Germany, Emperor William I's foreign policy secured
Germany's position as a great nation by forging alliances, isolating France by diplomatic means, and avoiding
war. Under William II, however, Germany, like other European powers, took an imperialistic course leading
to friction with neighbouring countries. Most alliances in which Germany had been previously involved were
not renewed, and new alliances excluded the country. Specifically, France established new relationships by
signing the Entente Cordiale with the United Kingdom and securing ties with the Russian Empire. Aside from
its contacts with Austria-Hungary, Germany became increasingly isolated.

2

Who was Kaiser Wilhelm II and was
he suited to lead Germany?

Kaiser Wilhelm II ruled over Germany
for 30 years. It is commonly agreed
his reign ended in disaster. He was the
last ever King or Emperor of Germany.

He fell out with cousin Tsar Nicholas II
of Russia. He was partly responsible for
causing World War One (and therefore
10 million deaths) And finally he was
forced to abdicate – run away to the
Netherlands and hide in shame.