The Central Powers, consisting of Germany, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria—hence known as the Quadruple Alliance —was one of the two main coalitions that fought World War I. It was defeated by the Allied Powers that had formed around the Triple Entente; the Powers' origin was the alliance of Germany and Austria-Hungary in 1879. Despite having nominally joined the Triple Alliance before, Italy did not take part in World War I on the side of the Central Powers; the Central Powers consisted of the German Empire and the Austro-Hungarian Empire at the beginning of the war. The Ottoman Empire joined the Central Powers in 1914. In 1915, the Kingdom of Bulgaria joined the alliance; the name "Central Powers" is derived from the location of these countries. Finland and Lithuania joined them in 1918 before the war ended and after the Russian Empire collapsed The Central Powers were composed of the following nations: In early July 1914, in the aftermath of the assassination of Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and the immediate likelihood of war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia, Kaiser Wilhelm II and the German government informed the Austro-Hungarian government that Germany would uphold its alliance with Austria-Hungary and defend it from possible Russian intervention if a war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia took place.
When Russia enacted a general mobilization, Germany viewed the act as provocative. The Russian government promised Germany that its general mobilization did not mean preparation for war with Germany but was a reaction to the events between Austria-Hungary and Serbia; the German government regarded the Russian promise of no war with Germany to be nonsense in light of its general mobilization, Germany, in turn, mobilized for war. On 1 August, Germany sent an ultimatum to Russia stating that since both Germany and Russia were in a state of military mobilization, an effective state of war existed between the two countries; that day, France, an ally of Russia, declared a state of general mobilization. In August 1914, Germany waged war on Russia, the German government justified military action against Russia as necessary because of Russian aggression as demonstrated by the mobilization of the Russian army that had resulted in Germany mobilizing in response. After Germany declared war on Russia, France with its alliance with Russia prepared a general mobilization in expectation of war.
On 3 August 1914, Germany responded to this action by declaring war on France. Germany, facing a two-front war, enacted what was known as the Schlieffen Plan, that involved German armed forces needing to move through Belgium and swing south into France and towards the French capital of Paris; this plan was hoped to gain victory against the French and allow German forces to concentrate on the Eastern Front. Belgium would not accept German forces crossing its territory. Germany invaded the country to launch an offensive towards Paris; this caused Great Britain to declare war against the German Empire, as the action violated the Treaty of London that both nations signed in 1839 guaranteeing Belgian neutrality and defense of the kingdom if a nation reneged. Subsequently, several states declared war on Germany in late August 1914, with Italy declaring war on Austria-Hungary in 1915 and Germany on 27 August 1916, the United States declaring war on Germany on 6 April 1917 and Greece declaring war on Germany in July 1917.
EuropeUpon its founding in 1871, the German Empire controlled Alsace-Lorraine as an "imperial territory" incorporated from France after the Franco-Prussian War. It was held as part of Germany's sovereign territory. AfricaGermany held multiple African colonies at the time of World War I. All of Germany's African colonies occupied by Allied forces during the war. Cameroon, German East Africa, German Southwest Africa were German colonies in Africa. Togoland was a German protectorate in Africa. AsiaThe Kiautschou Bay concession was a German dependency in East Asia leased from China in 1898, it was occupied by Japanese forces following the Siege of Tsingtao. PacificGerman New Guinea was a German protectorate in the Pacific, it was occupied by Australian forces in 1914. German Samoa was a German protectorate following the Tripartite Convention, it was occupied by the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in 1914. Austria-Hungary regarded the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand as being orchestrated with the assistance of Serbia.
The country viewed the assassination as setting a dangerous precedent of encouraging the country's South Slav population to rebel and threaten to tear apart the multinational country. Austria-Hungary formally sent an ultimatum to Serbia demanding a full-scale investigation of Serbian government complicity in the assassination, complete compliance by Serbia in agreeing to the terms demanded by Austria-Hungary. Serbia submitted to accept most of the demands, however Austria-Hungary viewed this as insufficient and used this lack of full compliance to justify military intervention; these demands have been viewed as a diplomatic cover for what was going to be an inevitable Austro-Hungarian declaration of war on Serbia. Austria-Hungary had
Battle of Segale
The Battle of Segale, fought on 27 October 1916, was a victory for the supporters of Empress Zawditu over those of Emperor Iyasu V of Ethiopia. Henze states that "Segale was Ethiopia's greatest battle since Adwa"; the nobility of Ethiopia had grown uneasy with the rule of Emperor Iyasu V. At last, when Iyasu failed to observe the important religious holiday of Meskel in the capital Addis Ababa, instead he remained in the predominantly Muslim city of Harar, they decided to strike. A number of nobles met 17 days on 27 September, convinced Abuna Mattewos to excommunicate Iyasu on the accusation that he converted to Islam announced on the steps of the Palace that Iyasu had been deposed in favor of Empress Zawditu; the plotters had sent orders to Harar which went astray. Sources dispute what Lij Iyasu's did next. Bahru Zewde states that Iyasu started to march on Addis Ababa, but his advance was blocked at Mieso by 15,000 soldiers and he fled into the Afar desert. Harold Marcus, drawing on the reports filed by the European diplomats, states that instead Lij Iyasu had sent one force towards the capital under Dejazmach Gebre, another, raised from loyal Afars and Somalis, to secure Dire Dawa.
Aleqa Gebre Igziabiher Elyas's narrative supports Marcus in that Iyasu fled to the desert where his Afar supporters helped him. In either case, Harar failed him as a base of support and he took refuge in the desert, his father and most important supporter, Negus Mikael of Wollo, was slow to march south upon the capital and restore Iyasu to the throne, not moving until the middle of October. Yet, when he did, the Negus crushed. On 18 October, Negus Mikael's troops defeated an advance force of 11,000 men in Menz and killed their leader, Ras Lul Seged. Under the command of the regent Ras Tafari and Fitawrari Habte Giyorgis, a force estimated to number between 25,000 and 35,000 marched north to do battle and the two armies came to face each other at Segale on the 22nd. Afterwards, the Ras Tafari stated that because "bloodshed among Ethiopians themselves is saddening, I arranged that monks from the monasteries of Debre Libanos and Zequala... come with their crosses to request Negus Mikael to go back to Wollo without making war."
Negus Mikael is said to have arrested these emissaries, ignoring their message. Negus Mikael opened the battle early in the morning, but his artillery was put out of commission by his opponent and his machine-gunners ran out of ammunition. Aleqa Gebre-Igziabiher Elyas, drawing from eyewitness accounts, describes the battle opening with a charge of Negus Mikael's infantry and cavalry. However, the Shewan troops had been trained to fire their rifles in rows and from the prone position, allowing them to fire in quick succession "and felled like leaves." The Shewans attacked, "and they pursued the army of Wello and took captives. And the Shewan cavalry went from valley to valley" and overran Negus Mikael's camp." At 3:25 pm, one of the Shewan officers telephoned to the capital. "The dead are numerous on both sides." Aleqa Gebre-Igziabiher Elyas explains one cause for this bloodshed was that the two sides did not differ in dress or insignia, could only distinguish each other by their passwords, which were not always well known to the soldiers.
Bahru Zewde succinctly comments: "The Wallo forces were defeated. Negus Mikael was captured; the coup was now sanctioned by blood." Negus Mikael defended himself in his corral. Amnesty was offered to the soldiers from the losing side, provided that they swear loyalty to the new Empress. However, two of Negus Mikael's chief lieutenants escaped the battle unvanquished: Ras Yimer, who managed to rally some of the defeated army and lead them to Dessie. Dejazmach Gebre Igziabiher, a lukewarm supporter of Negus Mikael sat out the battle, but when the Negus surrendered and he attempted to flee back to Welo, the peasants of Aliyu Amba ambushed and killed him; as for the deposed Lij Iyasu, he had just reached Ankober by the time. When the Imperial army reached that town 10 December, he fled further north to the old stronghold of Amba Mariam, further away from the center of power. "Iyasu could not slow down the consolidation of the new government," notes Harold Marcus
The Guraghe people are an Ethiopian Semitic-speaking ethnic group inhabiting Ethiopia. The Gurage people traditionally inhabit a fertile, semi-mountainous region in southwest Ethiopia, about 125 kilometers southwest of Addis Ababa, bordering the Awash River in the north, the Gibe River to the southwest, Lake Zway in the east. In addition, according to the 2007 Ethiopian national census the Gurage can be found in large numbers in Addis Ababa, Oromia Region, Dire Dawa, Harari Region, Somali Region, Amhara Region, Gambela Region, Benishangul-Gumuz Region, Tigray Region; the languages spoken by the Guraghe are collectively known as the Gurage languages. The variations among these languages are used to group the Guraghe people into three varied subgroups: Northern and Western. There is no general agreement on how many languages or dialects there are, in particular within the West Gurage grouping; the linguistic status of Gurage, the internal and external relations of the Gurage tongues, have given rise to a good deal of discussion and debate in the literature.
The languages are referred to collectively as " Guraginya " by other Ethiopians. The Gurage speak about 20 languages or Dialects: Soddo, Masqan, Muher, Ezha, Gumer, Gura, mekorikor, Eaner, Zway, Azernet-Berbere and Wuriro; such heavy fragmentation in such a small linguistic enclave is unique in the Semitic world. Guraghe languages is Related with Ge'ez. Guraghe is written left-to-right using a system. According to the historian Paul B. Henze, their origins are explained by traditions of a military expedition to the south during the last years of the Kingdom of Aksum, which left military colonies that became isolated from both northern Ethiopia and each other; however other historians have raised the issue of the complexity of Gurage Peoples if viewed as a singular group, for example Ulrich Braukhamper states that the Gurage East people may have been an extension of the ancient Harla people. Indeed, there is evidence that Harla architecture may have influenced old buildings found near Harar, the Gurage East group cite kinship with Harare peoples in the distant past.
Braukhamper states King Amda Seyon ordered Eritrean troops to be sent to mountainous regions in Gurage, which became a permanent settlement. In addition to Amda Seyon's military settlement there, the permanence of Abyssinian presence in Gurage is documented during his descendants Zara Yacob and Dawit II's reigns. Braukhamper notes that some Amhara troops and their families fled areas in modern-day Gondar and Gojjam into the Gurage region during the Ethiopian-Adal War of the 1530s, since Abyssinia was drastically outgunned by the Adal troops which received supplies and arms from the Ottoman Empire, thus Gurage peoples may be a complex mixture of Abyssinian and other groups which migrated and settled in that region for differing reasons. The majority of the inhabitants of the Gurage Zone were reported as Muslim, with 51.02% of the population reporting that belief, while 41.91% practiced Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity, 5.79% were Protestants, 1.12% Catholic. According to the 1994 Ethiopian census, self-identifying Gurage comprise about 4.3% of Ethiopia's population, or about 3 million people.
The populations of Gurage people are not known because half of the population live outside of the Gurage zone and many believe that the Gurage people may have the third largest populations, next to the Oromo's and the Amhara's. The Gurage live a sedentary life based on agriculture, involving a complex system of crop rotation and transplanting. Gurage people are known as a model of good work culture in the whole Ethiopia. Ensete is the main staple food, but other cash crops are grown, which include coffee and khat, both traditional stimulants. Animal husbandry is practiced, but for milk supply and dung. Other foods consumed include green cabbage, cheese and roasted grains, with meat consumption being limited; the Gurage, the writer Nega Mezlekia notes, "have earned a reputation as skilled traders". One example of an enterprising Gurage is Tekke, who Nathaniel T. Kenney described as "an Ethiopian Horatio Alger, Jr.": "He began his career selling old bottles and tin cans. The principal crop of the Gurage is ensete.
This has a massive stem, involved in every aspect of Gurage life. It has a place in everyday interactions among community members as well as specific roles in rituals. For example: the ritual uses of Ensete include wrapping a corpse after death with the fronds and tying off the umbilical cord after birth with an ensete fiber. Ensete is exchanged as part of a variety of social interactions, used as a recompense for services rendered. Ensete is involved in every aspect of the daily social and ritual life of the Gurage, with several others tribes in Southwest Ethiopia, form what has been termed the Ensete Culture Complex area... the life of the Gurage is enmeshed with various uses of ensete, not the least of, nutritional. Ensete can be prepared in a variety of ways. A normal Gurage diet consists of kocho, a thick bread made from ensete, is supplemented by cabbage, cheese and grains. Meat is not consumed on a regular basis, but eaten
The Ethiopian Empire known as Abyssinia, was a kingdom that spanned a geographical area in the current states of Eritrea and Ethiopia. It began with the establishment of the Solomonic dynasty from 1270 and lasted until 1974, when the ruling Solomonic dynasty was overthrown in a coup d'état by the Derg; the territory of present-day Eritrea became Italian Eritrea. Following the British occupation of Egypt in 1882, Ethiopia and Liberia were the only two African nations to remain independent during the Scramble for Africa by the European imperial powers in the late 19th century. Ethiopia remained independent after defeating Italians during the First Italo-Ethiopian War. After the Second Italo-Ethiopian War, the Italian Empire occupied Ethiopia for five years and established the Italian East Africa colony in the region; the Italians were driven out with the help of the British army. The country was one of the founding members of the United Nations in 1945. By 1974, Ethiopia was one of only three countries in the world to have the title of Emperor for its head of state, together with Japan and Iran under the Pahlavi dynasty.
It was the second-to-last country in Africa to use the title of Emperor. Ethiopia's human occupation began early, it is believed that the ancient Egyptians claimed that Punt, known as gold country, was in Ethiopia in 980 BC. According to the Kebra Nagast, Menelik I founded the Ethiopian empire in the 1st century BC, around when the Axumite Empire was established. In the 4th century, under King Ezana of Axum, the kingdom adopted Christianity as the state religion, it was thus one of the first Christian states. After the conquest of Aksum by Queen Gudit or Yodit, a period began which some scholars refer to as the Ethiopian Dark Ages. According to Ethiopian tradition, she ruled over the remains of the Aksumite Empire for 40 years before transmitting the crown to her descendants. In 1063AD the Sultanate of Showa describes the passing of their overlord Badit daughter of Maya; the earliest Muslim state in Ethiopia, the Makhzumi dynasty with its capital in Wahal, Hararghe region succeeds Queen Badit. The Zagwe kingdom another dynasty with its capital at Adafa, emerged not far from modern day Lalibela in the Lasta mountains.
The Zagwe continued the Orthodox Christianity of Aksum and constructed many rock-hewn churches such as the Church of Saint George in Lalibela. The dynasty would last until its overthrow by a new regime claiming descent from the old Aksumite kings. In 1270, the Zagwe dynasty was overthrown by a king claiming lineage from the Aksumite kings and, from Solomon; the eponymously named Solomonic dynasty was founded and ruled by the Abyssinians, from whom Abyssinia gets its name. The Abyssinians reigned with only a few interruptions from 1270 until the late 20th century; this dynasty governed large parts of Ethiopia through much of its modern history. During this time, the empire annexed various kingdoms into its realm; the dynasty successfully fought off Italian and Egyptian forces and made fruitful contacts with some European powers. In 1529, the Adal Sultanate's forces led by Ahmad ibn Ibrahim al-Ghazi invaded the Ethiopian Empire in what is known as the Abyssinian–Adal war; the Adal occupation lasted fourteen years.
During the conflict, the Adal Sultanate employed cannons provided by the Ottoman Empire. In the aftermath of the war, Adal annexed Ethiopia, uniting it with territories in what is now Somalia. In 1543, with the help of the Portuguese Empire, the Solomonic dynasty was restored. In 1543, Emperor Gelawdewos beat Ahmad ibn Ibrahim al-Ghazi armies and Ahmad himself was killed at the Battle of Wayna Daga, close to Wegera; this victory allowed the Empire to reconquer progressively the Ethiopian Highlands. In 1559 Gelawdewos was killed attempting to invade Adal Sultanate, his severed head was paraded in Adal's capital Harar; the Ottoman Empire, distated by the defeat of its ally Gragn, made another attempt at conquering Ethiopia, from 1557, establishing Habesh Eyalet, the province of Abyssinia, by conquering Massawa, the Empire’s main port and seizing Suakin from the allied Funj Sultanate in what is now Sudan. In 1573 Harar attempted to invade Ethiopia again however Sarsa Dengel defended the Ethiopian frontier.
The Ottomans were checked by Emperor Sarsa Dengel victory and sacking of Arqiqo in 1589, thus containing them on a narrow coast line strip. The Afar Sultanate maintained the remaining Ethiopian port at Baylul. Oromo migrations through the same period, occurred with the movement of a large pastoral population from the southeastern provinces of the Empire. A contemporary account was recorded from the Gamo region. Subsequently, the empire organization changed progressively, with faraway provinces taking more independence. A remote province such as Bale is last recorded paying tribute to the imperial throne during Yaqob reign. By 1607, Oromos were major players in the imperial politics, when Susenyos I, raised by a clan through gudifacha, took power, he was helped by fellow Luba age-group generals Mecha and Densa, who were rewarded by Rist feudal lands, in the present-day Gojjam districts of the same name. Susenyos reign was marked by his short-lived conversion to Catholicism, which ignited a major civil war.
His son Fasilides I reverted the move. The reign of Iyasu I the Great was a major period of consolidation, it saw the dispatching of
Negus is a royal title in the Ethiopian Semitic languages. It denotes a monarch, such as the Bahri Negasi of the Medri Bahri kingdom in pre-1890 Eritrea, the Negus in pre-1974 Ethiopia; the Negus is referred to as An-Najashi in the Islamic tradition. Negus is a noun derived from the Ethiopian Semitic root ngś, meaning "to reign"; the title has subsequently been used to translate the words "king" or "emperor" in Biblical and other literature. In more recent times, it was used as an honorific title bestowed on governors of the most important provinces: Gojjam, Wollo and the seaward kingdom and Shewa. Both uses and the imperial dignity would meet in the person of a regional prince, Lij Kassa Hailu, the third youngest son of Däjazmač Hailu Wolde-Giyorgis, Governor of Qwara Province, by his second wife Woizero Attitaggab, he rebelled against Empress Menen and her son, the Viceroy Ras Ali II of Yejju, in 1845 and spent the next nine years alternating between rebellion and submission until he was proclaimed negus at Amba Chera on 19 September 1854, after the Battle of Derasge proclaimed himself emperor on 8 February 1855 and was crowned as Tewodros II, at Derasge Maryam the next day.
Emperor of Ethiopia
Nobility is a social class ranked under royalty and found in some societies that have a formal aristocracy. Nobility possesses more acknowledged privileges and higher social status than most other classes in society; the privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be honorary, vary by country and era. As referred to in the Medieval chivalric motto "noblesse oblige", nobles can carry a lifelong duty to uphold various social responsibilities, such as honorable behavior, customary service, or leadership positions. Membership in the nobility, including rights and responsibilities, is hereditary. Membership in the nobility has been granted by a monarch or government, unlike other social classes where membership is determined by wealth, lifestyle, or affiliation. Nonetheless, acquisition of sufficient power, military prowess, or royal favour has enabled commoners to ascend into the nobility. There are a variety of ranks within the noble class.
Legal recognition of nobility has been more common in monarchies, but nobility existed in such regimes as the Dutch Republic, the Republic of Genoa, the Republic of Venice, the Old Swiss Confederacy, remains part of the legal social structure of some non-hereditary regimes, e.g. Channel Islands, San Marino, the Vatican City in Europe. Hereditary titles and styles added to names, as well as honorifics distinguish nobles from non-nobles in conversation and written speech. In many nations most of the nobility have been un-titled, some hereditary titles do not indicate nobility; some countries have had non-hereditary nobility, such as the Empire of Brazil or life peers in the United Kingdom. The term derives from the abstract noun of the adjective nobilis. In ancient Roman society, nobiles originated as an informal designation for the political governing class who had allied interests, including both patricians and plebeian families with an ancestor who had risen to the consulship through his own merit.
In modern usage, "nobility" is applied to the highest social class in pre-modern societies, excepting the ruling dynasty. In the feudal system, the nobility were those who held a fief land or office, under vassalage, i.e. in exchange for allegiance and various military, services to a suzerain, who might be a higher-ranking nobleman or a monarch. It came to be seen as a hereditary caste, sometimes associated with a right to bear a hereditary title and, for example in pre-revolutionary France, enjoying fiscal and other privileges. While noble status conferred significant privileges in most jurisdictions, by the 21st century it had become a honorary dignity in most societies, although a few, residual privileges may still be preserved and some Asian and African cultures continue to attach considerable significance to formal hereditary rank or titles. Nobility is a historical and legal notion, differing from high socio-economic status in that the latter is based on income, possessions or lifestyle.
Being wealthy or influential cannot ipso facto make one noble, nor are all nobles wealthy or influential. Various republics, including former Iron Curtain countries, Greece and Austria have expressly abolished the conferral and use of titles of nobility for their citizens; this is distinct from countries which have not abolished the right to inherit titles, but which do not grant legal recognition or protection to them, such as Germany and Italy, although Germany recognizes their use as part of the legal surname. Still other countries and authorities allow their use, but forbid attachment of any privilege thereto, e.g. Finland and the European Union, while French law protects lawful titles against usurpation. Although many societies have a privileged upper class with substantial wealth and power, the status is not hereditary and does not entail a distinct legal status, nor differentiated forms of address. Not all of the benefits of nobility derived from noble status per se. Privileges were granted or recognised by the monarch in association with possession of a specific title, office or estate.
Most nobles' wealth derived from one or more estates, large or small, that might include fields, orchards, hunting grounds, etc. It included infrastructure such as castle and mill to which local peasants were allowed some access, although at a price. Nobles were expected to live "nobly", that is, from the proceeds of these possessions. Work involving manual labour or subordination to those of lower rank was either forbidden or frowned upon socially. On the other hand, membership in the nobility was a prerequisite for holding offices of trust in the realm and for career promotion in the military, at court and the higher functions in the government and church. Prior to the French Revolution, European nobles commanded tribute in the form of entitlement to cash rents or usage taxes, labour or a portion of the annual crop yield from commoners or no
Lij Iyasu, sometimes incorrectly styled Iyasu V, was the designated but uncrowned Emperor of Ethiopia. His baptismal name was Kifle Yaqob. Ethiopian emperors traditionally chose their regnal name on the day they were crowned emperor, since he was never crowned, he is referred to as Lij Iyasu, "Lij" meaning child one born of royal blood. Lij Iyasu was born in Wollo during the reign of Menelik II of Ethiopia, his mother, Woizero Shoaregga, was the eldest daughter of Menelek. Iyasu's father was Governor of Wollo and longstanding friend of Menelik. Mikael had been born Mohammed Ali and was a Muslim until 1875, when he was forced to convert to Christianity. Late in his life, Emperor Menelik was confronted with the problem of his succession, he had four possible heirs. According to the traditional rules of succession, the next direct patrilineal descendant was the grandson of Menelik's uncle, Dejazmach Taye Gulilat, his other three heirs were all in the female line. The first of these was his oldest grandson, Dejazmach Wosan Seged, son of his daughter Shoaregga Menelik by her first marriage to Wedadjo Gobena.
The second heir of the female line was his younger grandson Lij Iyasu. The third heir of the female line was Menelik's elder daughter Woizero Zewditu, married to Ras Gugsa Welle, nephew of the Empress Taitu. Menelik refused to consider Taye Gulilat whom he disliked. Wosan Seged was eliminated from consideration due to dwarfism. In March 1908, at any rate, Wosan Seged was in dying of tuberculosis, it was clear that the aristocracy would not respect a woman as their leader, so Zewditu was not considered at this time. On 11 June 1908, after experiencing a stroke while on pilgrimage to Debre Libanos, Menelik informed his ministers that Iyasu would succeed him. However, due to Iyasu's youth, Menelik agreed to the suggestion that he appoint a Regent during the minority of his heir apparent; until Iyasu came of age, the elder statesman Ras Tessema Nadew' would be Regent Plenipotentiary. In May 1909, shortly before the Emperor made this decision, Lij Iyasu was married to Woizero Romanework Mengesha, the daughter of Ras Mengesha Yohannes, granddaughter of Emperor Yohannes IV, the niece of Empress Taitu.
However, that marriage was annulled without having been consummated. Subsequently in April 1910, Iyasu married Sabla Wangel Hailu, the daughter of Ras Hailu Tekle Haymanot of Gojjam. Not long after his decision that Lij Iyasu would succeed him, Emperor Menelik succumbed to further strokes; these left him a mere shell of his once-powerful self, incapacitated until his death in 1913. During his last years, in a bid to retain power, Empress Taitu intrigued against his choice, intending to substitute either her step-daughter Leult Zewditu or her daughter's husband Ras Gugsa Welle for Iyasu. In response to Taitu's intriguing, a number of nobles organized in an ever-closer alliance against her. On 28 October 1909, after a massive stroke, Menelik's choice of Iyasu as his heir was made public with Ras Bitwoedded Tessema Nadew as regent; the new regent found his authority undermined not only by the still living but paralyzed Emperor Menelik, but by the Empress. For example, she insisted that questions from the foreign legations in Addis Ababa be directed to her, not to Tessema.
Furthermore, Tessema himself suffered from an illness, which left him appearing helpless and apathetic and would take his life within a year. It took a coup d'état engineered by a group of aristocrats and the head of the Imperial Bodyguard to convince Ras Tesemma and Habte Giyorgis to decisively limit the influence of the Empress. Despite these developments, the imperial government continued to falter: administrators were unwilling to make decisions because Tessema himself might be overthrown, foreign affairs suffered. Despite this, Harold Marcus notes that the presence of Tessema "did curb ministerial dissensions and intrigues and was a reminder of the existence of central authority."With Tessema, Iyasu continued Menelik's program of modernization, including the establishment of the first police force in Addis Ababa. On 10 April 1911, Tessema Nadew died and, when the council met to appoint a successor as Enderase, Lij Iyasu demanded a role in the process; when asked whom he desired in the position, he is reported to have replied, "Myself!"
On 11 May, the seal of Iyasu replaced that of his grandfather, although not with the style of Emperor. Marcus describes Iyasu's abilities as a ruler: From the beginning of his de facto reign, Lij Iyasu showed that he was not the stuff from which great monarchs were made, he was bright, but impulsive, lascivious, prone to depressions and egocentricities, politically inept. Despite his vision of an Ethiopia in which religion and ethnic affiliations made no difference in a man's political or private career, he had no clear comprehension of the power realities in the empire, nor of his own position as its ruler. In the first year, he was faced with several serious challenges to his rule. On 31 May, Ras Abate attempted a coup d’état by seizing the arsenal and its modern weapons in the palace, but was convinced to make a public submission in return for being allowed to depart for his estates in the southern provinces. On 14 July, an attempt was made to poison Iyasu; that same year Menelik's soldiers sent a delegation demanding back pay and regular supplies, which made clear that the government was on the brink