Weimar Republic

In: Historical Events

Submitted By Big122
Words 3011
Pages 13
The Troubled Infancy of the Weimar Republic

Key Vocabulary:
Weimer Republic: The name of the German government lasting from the end of WWI (1919) to Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor (1933).
Spartacists: A left-wing revolutionary group that later became the Communist Party of Germany (KPD)
Nationalist: One who puts their country above all else
The Reichstag: The German congress
President Hindenberg: Leader of Weimar Republic

Surprisingly, given its vast industrial and military power when the war began, Germany emerged from World War I a battered and, in many respects, a bewildered country. In the final months of 1918, Germans had witnessed the reversal of their army’s spring offensive, the resignation of the chancellor and abdication of the Kaiser, and the signing of a hastily arranged armistice, all in the midst of massive civil unrest.

Establishment of the Weimar Republic.

Germany had also changed internally. When the Kaiser and chancellor left, members of different political parties vied for power, and the country limped along for several months without a firm government in power. Then, in elections in January 1919, 76 percent of Germans voted for the three parties that favored democracy: the Social Democratic Party (SPD), the Catholic Center (plus its allies in the Catholic Bavarian People’s Party), and the smaller German Democratic Party (DDP). In February, the elected officials met in the city of Weimar to draw up a constitution and establish a coalition, and the Weimar Republic was born. Understandably, many Germans could not accept that they were the losers of World War I. And yet that was precisely the basis of the Versailles Treaty (so-called because negotiations, to which Germany was not invited, took place in Versailles, France) presented to the leaders of the Weimar Republic in May 1919.

German officials, as well as the German people…...

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