Chancellor of Germany
The title Chancellor has designated different offices in the history of Germany. It is used for the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, the head of government of Germany; the term, dating from the Early Middle Ages, is derived from the Latin term cancellarius. The modern office of chancellor evolved from the position created for Otto von Bismarck in the North German Confederation in 1867; the role of the chancellor has varied throughout Germany's modern history. Today, the chancellor is the country's effective leader, although in formal protocol, the Bundespräsident and Bundestagspräsident are ranked higher. In German politics, the chancellor is the equivalent of a prime minister in many other countries; the chancellor is elected by the Bundestag. The current, official title in German is Bundeskanzler, which means "Federal Chancellor", is sometimes shortened to Kanzler; the 8th and current chancellor is Angela Merkel, serving her fourth term in office. She is the first female chancellor.
The title of Chancellor has a long history, stemming back to the Holy Roman Empire, when the office of German archchancellor was held by Archbishops of Mainz. The title was, at times, used in several states of German-speaking Europe; the modern office of chancellor was established with the North German Confederation, of which Otto von Bismarck became Bundeskanzler in 1867. With the enlargement of this federal state to the German Empire in 1871, the title was renamed to Reichskanzler. With Germany's constitution of 1949, the title of Bundeskanzler was revived. During the various eras, the role of the chancellor has varied. From 1867 to 1918, the chancellor was the only responsible minister of the federal level, he was installed by the federal presidium. The Staatssekretäre were civil servants subordinate to the chancellor. Besides the executive, the constitution gave the chancellor only one function: presiding over the Federal Council, the representative organ of the states, but in reality, the chancellor was nearly always installed as minister president of Prussia, too.
Indirectly, this gave the chancellor the power of the Federal Council, including the dissolution of parliament. Although effective government was possible only on cooperation with the parliament, the results of the elections had only an indirect influence on the chancellorship, at most. Only in October 1918, the constitution was changed: it required the chancellor to have the trust of the parliament; some two weeks Chancellor Max von Baden declared the abdication of the emperor and ceded power illegally to the revolutionary Council of People’s Delegates. According to the Weimar Constitution of 1919, the chancellor was head of a collegial government; the chancellor was appointed and dismissed by the president, as were the ministers, upon proposal by the chancellor. The chancellor or any minister had to be dismissed; as today, the chancellor had the prerogative to determine the guidelines of government. In reality this power was limited by the president; when the Nazis came to power on 30 January 1933, the Weimar Constitution was de facto set aside.
After the death of President Hindenburg in 1934, Adolf Hitler, the dictatorial party leader and chancellor, took over the powers of the president. The new official title became Führer und Reichskanzler; the 1949 constitution gave the chancellor much greater powers than during the Weimar Republic, while diminishing the role of the president. Germany is today referred to as a "chancellor democracy", reflecting the role of the chancellor as the country's chief executive. Since 1867, 33 individuals have served as heads of government of Germany, West Germany, or Northern Germany, nearly all of them with the title of Chancellor. Due to his administrative tasks, the head of the clerics at the chapel of an imperial palace during the Carolingian Empire was called chancellor; the chapel's college acted as the Emperor's chancery issuing capitularies. Since the days of Louis the German, the archbishop of Mainz was ex officio German archchancellor, a position he held until the end of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, while de jure the archbishop of Cologne was chancellor of Italy and the archbishop of Trier of Burgundy.
These three prince-archbishops were prince-electors of the empire electing the King of the Romans. In medieval times, the German chancellor had political power like Archbishop Willigis or Rainald von Dassel under Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. In 1559, Emperor Ferdinand I established the agency of an imperial chancellery at the Vienna Hofburg Palace, headed by a vice-chancellor under the nominal authority of the Mainz archbishop. Upon the 1620 Battle of White Mountain, Emperor Ferdinand II created the office of an Austrian court chancellor in charge of the internal and foreign affairs of the Habsburg Monarchy. From 1753 onwards, the office of an Austrian state chancellor was held by Prince Kaunitz; the imperial chancellery lost its importance, from the days of Maria Theresa and Joseph II existed on paper. After the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire, Prince Metternich served as state chancellor of the Austrian Empire Prince Hardenberg acted as Prussian chancellor; the German
Warcino is a village in the administrative district of Gmina Kępice, within Słupsk County, Pomeranian Voivodeship, in northern Poland. The settlement lies in Farther Pomerania on the left bank of the Wieprza river 3 kilometres southwest of Kępice, 30 km southwest of Słupsk, 117 km west of the regional capital Gdańsk; the village has a population of 450. The settlement, first mentioned in a 1485 deed, when it was part of the Duchy of Pomerania ruled by the Griffin duke Bogislaw X; the estates were held by nobles from nearby Zitzewitz. Devastated in the Thirty Years' War, the region was incorporated into the Brandenburg-Prussian province of Pomerania in 1653; the Varzin branch of the Zitzewitz noble family became extinct in 1781, whereafter the estates changed hands several times. In 1867 it was bought from the Blumenthal family for Otto von Bismarck by the grateful Prussian state for his services as Minister President during the Austro-Prussian War. Bismarck, though born in the Altmark region of central Germany, had ties to eastern Pomerania as he had spent several years of his childhood at his family's estates in Kniephof near Naugard, married Johanna von Puttkamer at nearby Kolziglow in 1847.
Bismarck evidently enjoyed the lifestyle of a Prussian Junker and the manor with its extended park and forests became one of the couple's favoured residences. Johanna died preceding her husband by four years. Otto von Bismarck retired to his Friedrichsruh manor in Lauenburg. Varzin manor remained in the possession of the Bismarck family until the end of World War II; the last family resident, Countess Sybille von Bismarck, widow of Otto von Bismarck's son Wilhelm, declined to flee and, at age 81, committed suicide when Red Army forces were approaching in March 1945. She was buried in a family mausoleum on the grounds, which however was destroyed in 1957. After the war, the remaining German residents of the area were expelled and the locale became the Polish Warcino; the manor house, converted into a forestry college, retained a huge depiction of Bismarck's horse, Schmetterling, on its walls. In 2011-2012, the remains of the ruinous Protestant half-timbered church in nearby Ciecholub were saved and relocated to the Warcino park.
The rebuilt church was consecrated by the Evangelical bishop Marcin Hintz on 17 August 2012. Theodor Fontane visited Varzin, mentioned in his novel Effi Briest Count Gustav Kálnoky, Foreign Minister of Austria-Hungary, arrived in Varzin in 1884 for conversations on Triple Alliance matters with Chancellor Bismarck Walter Flex, author of the Wild Geese poem, stayed at Varzin as a tutor of the Bismarck family in 1910-11 Marion Dönhoff rested at Varzin during her equestrian flight from East Prussia in 1945 and spent several days there with Sybille von Bismarck. Johanna von Puttkammer
Germany the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, the Alps to the south. It borders Denmark to the north and the Czech Republic to the east and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, Luxembourg and the Netherlands to the west. Germany includes 16 constituent states, covers an area of 357,386 square kilometres, has a temperate seasonal climate. With 83 million inhabitants, it is the second most populous state of Europe after Russia, the most populous state lying in Europe, as well as the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is a decentralized country, its capital and largest metropolis is Berlin, while Frankfurt serves as its financial capital and has the country's busiest airport. Germany's largest urban area is the Ruhr, with its main centres of Essen; the country's other major cities are Hamburg, Cologne, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Dresden, Bremen and Nuremberg. Various Germanic tribes have inhabited the northern parts of modern Germany since classical antiquity.
A region named Germania was documented before 100 AD. During the Migration Period, the Germanic tribes expanded southward. Beginning in the 10th century, German territories formed a central part of the Holy Roman Empire. During the 16th century, northern German regions became the centre of the Protestant Reformation. After the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire, the German Confederation was formed in 1815; the German revolutions of 1848–49 resulted in the Frankfurt Parliament establishing major democratic rights. In 1871, Germany became a nation state when most of the German states unified into the Prussian-dominated German Empire. After World War I and the revolution of 1918–19, the Empire was replaced by the parliamentary Weimar Republic; the Nazi seizure of power in 1933 led to the establishment of a dictatorship, the annexation of Austria, World War II, the Holocaust. After the end of World War II in Europe and a period of Allied occupation, Austria was re-established as an independent country and two new German states were founded: West Germany, formed from the American and French occupation zones, East Germany, formed from the Soviet occupation zone.
Following the Revolutions of 1989 that ended communist rule in Central and Eastern Europe, the country was reunified on 3 October 1990. Today, the sovereign state of Germany is a federal parliamentary republic led by a chancellor, it is a great power with a strong economy. As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is both the world's third-largest exporter and importer of goods; as a developed country with a high standard of living, it upholds a social security and universal health care system, environmental protection, a tuition-free university education. The Federal Republic of Germany was a founding member of the European Economic Community in 1957 and the European Union in 1993, it is part of the Schengen Area and became a co-founder of the Eurozone in 1999. Germany is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the G7, the G20, the OECD. Known for its rich cultural history, Germany has been continuously the home of influential and successful artists, musicians, film people, entrepreneurs, scientists and inventors.
Germany has a large number of World Heritage sites and is among the top tourism destinations in the world. The English word Germany derives from the Latin Germania, which came into use after Julius Caesar adopted it for the peoples east of the Rhine; the German term Deutschland diutisciu land is derived from deutsch, descended from Old High German diutisc "popular" used to distinguish the language of the common people from Latin and its Romance descendants. This in turn descends from Proto-Germanic *þiudiskaz "popular", derived from *þeudō, descended from Proto-Indo-European *tewtéh₂- "people", from which the word Teutons originates; the discovery of the Mauer 1 mandible shows that ancient humans were present in Germany at least 600,000 years ago. The oldest complete hunting weapons found anywhere in the world were discovered in a coal mine in Schöningen between 1994 and 1998 where eight 380,000-year-old wooden javelins of 1.82 to 2.25 m length were unearthed. The Neander Valley was the location where the first non-modern human fossil was discovered.
The Neanderthal 1 fossils are known to be 40,000 years old. Evidence of modern humans dated, has been found in caves in the Swabian Jura near Ulm; the finds included 42,000-year-old bird bone and mammoth ivory flutes which are the oldest musical instruments found, the 40,000-year-old Ice Age Lion Man, the oldest uncontested figurative art discovered, the 35,000-year-old Venus of Hohle Fels, the oldest uncontested human figurative art discovered. The Nebra sky disk is a bronze artefact created during the European Bronze Age attributed to a site near Nebra, Saxony-Anhalt, it is part of UNESCO's Memory of the World Programme. The Germanic tribes are thought to date from the Pre-Roman Iron Age. From southern Scandinavia and north Germany, they expanded south and west from the 1st century BC, coming into contact with the Celtic tribes of Gaul as well
Herbert von Bismarck
Prince Nikolaus Heinrich Ferdinand Herbert von Bismarck was a German politician, who served as Foreign Secretary from 1886 to 1890. His political career was tied to that of his father, Otto von Bismarck, he left office a few days after his father's dismissal, he succeeded his father as the 2nd Prince of Bismarck in 1898. He was died in Friedrichsruh. Herbert von Bismarck born in Berlin, the oldest son of Otto von Bismarck and his wife Johanna, née von Puttkamer, he had an older sister, a younger brother, Wilhelm. He fought in the Franco-Prussian War, sustaining a bullet wound through the left leg during a cavalry charge at the Battle of Mars-La-Tour, he joined the diplomatic service on his father's wishes. He became Under-Secretary and acting head of the Foreign Office in 1885, the following year he was appointed the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, he additionally was appointed Minister of State of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1888. He once said that'My father is the only person who can handle this business.'
He wanted to marry Princess Elisabeth von Carolath-Beuthen in 1881, but his father would not allow it, as she was a Catholic divorcee and she was ten years older than Herbert. The Chancellor pressured his son with tears and threats to disinherit him by getting Kaiser Wilhelm I to change the primogeniture statutes; this experience left Herbert a bitter and alcoholic man. He once shot five bullets through a Foreign Office window to be told, he replied ` Officials have to be kept in a permanent state of alarm. On 21 June 1892 in Vienna he married Countess Marguerite Hoyos, a member of the Spanish magnate family of Hoyos from Hungary, who herself was half-English and a granddaughter of Robert Whitehead, the inventor of the torpedo, they had five children: Countess Hannah Leopoldine Alice von Bismarck-Schönhausen, married Leopold von Bredow Countess Maria Goedela von Bismarck-Schönhausen, married Hermann Graf Keyserling HSH Otto Christian Archibald, Prince von Bismarck, married Ann-Mari Tengbom Count Gottfried Alexander Georg Herbert von Bismarck-Schönhausen, married Melanie, Countess of Hoyos Count Albrecht Edzard Heinrich Karl von Bismarck-Schönhausen, married Mona Travis Strader.
He entered the civil service in 1874 and was promoted during the chancellorship of his father to the position of undersecretary in the foreign office. He became State Secretary for Foreign Affairs in 1886. In 1890, when Kaiser Wilhelm II called for the resignation of Otto von Bismarck as Chancellor, Herbert von Bismarck resigned as State Secretary, he was at his father's bedside. He died in Friedrichsruh; the capital of the German colonial administration of German New Guinea was called Herbertshöhe. 1849–1865: Jkr. Herbert von Bismarck 1865–1898: High Born Count Herbert of Bismarck-Schönhausen 1898–1904: His Serene Highness The Prince of Bismarck Bismarck family Regarding personal names: Fürst is a title, translated as'Prince', not a first or middle name; the feminine form is Fürstin. Regarding personal names: Until 1919, Graf was a title, translated as Count, not a first or middle name; the female form is Gräfin. In Germany since 1919, it forms part of family names
The Gastein Convention called the Convention of Badgastein, was a treaty signed at Bad Gastein in Austria on 14 August 1865. It embodied agreements between the two principal powers of the German Confederation and Austria, over the governing of the so-called'Elbe Duchies' of Schleswig and Saxe-Lauenburg; the Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein had been united under Danish rule since 1460. While Schleswig north of the Eider River was a Danish fief, the Duchies of Holstein remained an estate of the Holy Roman Empire which the Kings of Denmark held as an Imperial fief. In 1815 King Frederick VI of Denmark acquired the adjacent Duchy of Saxe-Lauenburg. Both Holstein and Lauenburg were member states of the German Confederation since 1815; when in 1858 the Danish national liberal Council President Carl Christian Hall drafted the'November Constitution' in order to link Schleswig more to the Danish kingdom, he sparked German protests, troops of the German Confederation occupied Holstein and Lauenburg in 1863.
In the following Second Schleswig War, Denmark was defeated and according to the Treaty of Vienna signed on 30 October 1864 had to cede the Elbe Duchies to victorious Prussia and Austria. After the war, the two powers faced the issue of governing the provinces held by the Danish royal House of Glücksburg in personal union. Prussia aimed at the annexation of the territories as provinces with her state territory, against the strong resistance of the Austrians, who persisted on the status of autonomous duchies of the Confederation ruled as a condominium. To ease tensions, the Prussian minister-president Otto von Bismarck met with the Austrian envoy Gustav von Blome at the spa town of Bad Gastein in the Austrian Alps. In the negotiations, the administration of the gained territories was split between the two powers: Prussia would rule over Schleswig and Austria over Holstein. Austria would renounce Saxe-Lauenburg, which would be ruled by the Prussian king in personal union for a purchase price of 2.5 million Danish rigsdalers.
The eleven articles of the agreement signed on 14 August 1865 covered: abandoning the shared administration of Schleswig and Holstein Prussian control of Schleswig Austrian control of Holstein the Prussian crown purchasing Austria's right to Lauenburg Prussian transit rights on military roads through Holstein to Schleswig Prussian rights to construct a canal and a telegraph-line through Holstein to Schleswig setting up a German Confederation Navy designating a headquarters for the proposed navy at Kiel in Holstein under Prussian sovereignty designating Rendsburg as a Fortress of the German Confederation. The treaty was ratified by both parties on 19 August. King William I of Prussia assumed the ducal title. Bismarck's negotiation skills had been underestimated by Blome. Though Prussia benefitted from the treaty, the minister-president noted that the'bonding of cracks' did not answer the German question nor did it ease the Austria–Prussia rivalry. Moreover the treaty ran counter to the legal basis of the German Confederation, which led to the refusal by the smaller Confederation states and turned out detrimental to the reputation of the Austrian side.
The European powers reacted the French emperor Napoleon III responded with protest, while the British saw their interests in the North Sea as threatened. The Gastein Convention marked the end off all attempts to seek a peaceful solution of the German question, it soon collapsed due to Bismarck's successful efforts to provoke a war with the Austrian Empire as well as to eliminate Austria from the German Confederation. The Austrian government had tolerated the rule of Duke Frederick VIII of Schleswig-Holstein, much to the chagrin of Prussia. On 1 June 1866 Austria asked the Federal Convention for a resolution on the status of Holstein, which Prussia regarded as a breach of the mutual agreement. Under this pretext, Prussian troops entered Holstein nine days which led to the outbreak of the Austro-Prussian War known as the Seven Weeks' War; the Peace of Prague in 1866 confirmed Denmark's cession of Schlewig and Holstein, which were both annexed by Prussia, but promised a plebiscite to decide whether north Schleswig wished to return to Danish rule.
This provision was unilaterally set aside by a resolution of Prussia and Austria in 1878. Instead the Prussian Province of Schleswig-Holstein was created in 1868. Both territories were to be admitted to the Zollverein, headed by Prussia, of which Austria was not a member
Wilhelm II, German Emperor
Wilhelm II was the last German Emperor and King of Prussia, reigning from 15 June 1888 until his abdication on 9 November 1918 shortly before Germany's defeat in World War I. He was the eldest grandchild of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and related to many monarchs and princes of Europe, most notably his first cousin King George V of the United Kingdom and Emperor Nicholas II of Russia, whose wife, was Wilhelm and George's first cousin. Assuming the throne in 1888, he dismissed the country's longtime chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, in 1890 before launching Germany on a bellicose "New Course" to cement its status as a respected world power. However, due to his impetuous personality, he undermined this aim by making tactless, alarming public statements without consulting his ministers beforehand, he did much to alienate other Great Powers from Germany by initiating a massive build-up of the German Navy, challenging French control over Morocco, backing the Austrian annexation of Bosnia in 1908.
Wilhelm II's turbulent reign culminated in his guarantee of military support to Austria-Hungary during the crisis of July 1914, which resulted in the outbreak of World War I. A lax wartime leader, he left all decision-making regarding military strategy and organisation of the war effort in the hands of the German General Staff; this broad delegation of authority gave rise to a de facto military dictatorship whose authorisation of unrestricted submarine warfare and the Zimmerman Telegram led to the United States' entry into the conflict in April 1917. After Germany's defeat in 1918, Wilhelm lost the support of the German army, abdicated on 9 November 1918, fled to exile in the Netherlands, where he died in 1941. Wilhelm was born on 27 January 1859 at the Crown Prince's Palace, Berlin, to Victoria, Princess Royal, the wife of Prince Frederick William of Prussia, his mother was the eldest daughter of Britain's Queen Victoria. At the time of his birth, his great-uncle Frederick William IV was king of Prussia, his grandfather and namesake Wilhelm was acting as regent.
He was the first grandchild of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, but more the first son of the crown prince of Prussia. From 1861, Wilhelm was second in the line of succession to Prussia, after 1871, to the newly created German Empire, according to the constitution of the German Empire, was ruled by the Prussian king. At the time of his birth, he was sixth in the line of succession to the British throne, after his maternal uncles and his mother. A traumatic breech birth resulted in Erb's palsy, which left him with a withered left arm about six inches shorter than his right, he tried with some success to conceal this. In others, he holds his left hand with his right, has his crippled arm on the hilt of a sword, or holds a cane to give the illusion of a useful limb posed at a dignified angle. Historians have suggested. In 1863, Wilhelm was taken to England to be present at the wedding of his Uncle Bertie, Princess Alexandra of Denmark. Wilhelm attended the ceremony in a Highland costume, complete with a small toy dirk.
During the ceremony, the four-year-old became restless. His eighteen-year-old uncle Prince Alfred, charged with keeping an eye on him, told him to be quiet, but Wilhelm drew his dirk and threatened Alfred; when Alfred attempted to subdue him by force, Wilhelm bit him on the leg. His grandmother, Queen Victoria, missed seeing the fracas, his mother, was obsessed with his damaged arm, blaming herself for the child's handicap and insisted that he become a good rider. The thought that he, as heir to the throne, should not be able to ride was intolerable to her. Riding lessons were a matter of endurance for Wilhelm. Over and over, the weeping prince was compelled to go through the paces, he fell off time despite his tears was set on its back again. After weeks of this he got it right and was able to maintain his balance. Wilhelm, from six years of age, was tutored and influenced by the 39-year-old teacher Georg Hinzpeter. "Hinzpeter", he wrote, "was a good fellow. Whether he was the right tutor for me, I dare not decide.
The torments inflicted on me, in this pony riding, must be attributed to my mother."As a teenager he was educated at Kassel at the Friedrichsgymnasium. In January 1877, Wilhelm finished high school and on his eighteenth birthday received as a present from his grandmother, Queen Victoria, the Order of the Garter. After Kassel he spent four terms at the University of Bonn, he became a member of the exclusive Corps Borussia Bonn. Wilhelm possessed a quick intelligence, but this was overshadowed by a cantankerous temper; as a scion of the royal house of Hohenzollern, Wilhelm was exposed from an early age to the military society of the Prussian aristocracy. This had a major impact on him and, in maturity, Wilhelm was seen out of uniform; the hyper-masculine military culture of Prussia in this period did much to frame his political ideals and personal relationships. Crown Prince Frederick was viewed by his respect, his father's status as a hero of the wars of unification was responsible for the young Wilhelm's attitude, as were the circumstances in which he was raised.
The German Empire known as Imperial Germany, was the German nation state that existed from the unification of Germany in 1871 until the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1918. It was founded in 1871 when the south German states, except for Austria, joined the North German Confederation. On 1 January 1871, the new constitution came into force that changed the name of the federal state and introduced the title of emperor for Wilhelm I, King of Prussia from the House of Hohenzollern. Berlin remained its capital, Otto von Bismarck remained Chancellor, the head of government; as these events occurred, the Prussian-led North German Confederation and its southern German allies were still engaged in the Franco-Prussian War. The German Empire consisted of 26 states, most of them ruled by royal families, they included four kingdoms, six grand duchies, five duchies, seven principalities, three free Hanseatic cities, one imperial territory. Although Prussia was one of several kingdoms in the realm, it contained about two thirds of Germany's population and territory.
Prussian dominance was established constitutionally. After 1850, the states of Germany had become industrialized, with particular strengths in coal, iron and railways. In 1871, Germany had a population of 41 million people. A rural collection of states in 1815, the now united Germany became predominantly urban. During its 47 years of existence, the German Empire was an industrial and scientific giant, gaining more Nobel Prizes in science than any other country. By 1900, Germany was the largest economy in Europe, surpassing the United Kingdom, as well as the second-largest in the world, behind only the United States. From 1867 to 1878/9, Otto von Bismarck's tenure as the first and to this day longest reigning Chancellor was marked by relative liberalism, but it became more conservative afterwards. Broad reforms and the Kulturkampf marked his period in the office. Late in Bismarck's chancellorship and in spite of his personal opposition, Germany became involved in colonialism. Claiming much of the leftover territory, yet unclaimed in the Scramble for Africa, it managed to build the third-largest colonial empire after the British and the French ones.
As a colonial state, it sometimes clashed with other European powers the British Empire. Germany became a great power, boasting a developing rail network, the world's strongest army, a fast-growing industrial base. In less than a decade, its navy became second only to Britain's Royal Navy. After the removal of Otto von Bismarck by Wilhelm II in 1890, the Empire embarked on Weltpolitik – a bellicose new course that contributed to the outbreak of World War I. In addition, Bismarck's successors were incapable of maintaining their predecessor's complex and overlapping alliances which had kept Germany from being diplomatically isolated; this period was marked by various factors influencing the Emperor's decisions, which were perceived as contradictory or unpredictable by the public. In 1879, the German Empire consolidated the Dual Alliance with Austria-Hungary, followed by the Triple Alliance with Italy in 1882, it retained strong diplomatic ties to the Ottoman Empire. When the great crisis of 1914 arrived, Italy left the alliance and the Ottoman Empire formally allied with Germany.
In the First World War, German plans to capture Paris in the autumn of 1914 failed. The war on the Western Front became a stalemate; the Allied naval blockade caused severe shortages of food. However, Imperial Germany had success on the Eastern Front; the German declaration of unrestricted submarine warfare in early 1917, contributed to bringing the United States into the war. The high command under Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff controlled the country, but in October after the failed offensive in spring 1918, the German armies were in retreat, allies Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire had collapsed, Bulgaria had surrendered; the Empire collapsed in the November 1918 Revolution with the abdications of its monarchs. This left a postwar federal republic and a devastated and unsatisfied populace, which led to the rise of Adolf Hitler and Nazism; the German Confederation had been created by an act of the Congress of Vienna on 8 June 1815 as a result of the Napoleonic Wars, after being alluded to in Article 6 of the 1814 Treaty of Paris.
German nationalism shifted from its liberal and democratic character in 1848, called Pan-Germanism, to Prussian prime minister Otto von Bismarck's pragmatic Realpolitik. Bismarck sought to extend Hohenzollern hegemony throughout the German states, he envisioned a Prussian-dominated Germany. Three wars led to military successes and helped to persuade German people to do this: the Second Schleswig War against Denmark in 1864, the Austro-Prussian War in 1866, the Franco-Prussian War against France in 1870–71; the German Confederation ended as a result of the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 between the constituent Confederation entities of the Austrian Empire and its allies on one side and the Kingdom of Prussia and its allies on the other. The war resulted in the partial replacement of the Confederation in 1867 by a North German Confederation, comprising the 22 states north of the Main; the patriotic fervour generated by the Franco-Prussian War overwhelmed the remaining opposition to a unified Germany in the four stat