530 Works

Warfare 1914-1918 (Germany)

Markus Pöhlmann
Germany entered the First World War as one of the era’s mightiest military powers. In 1914, Germany’s understanding of war was strongly influenced by four decades of peace and by its geostrategic situation. The army’s and navy’s expectations and operational preparations shared little common ground. This article provides an introduction to the structure, doctrine, operational development, and military performance of the two branches of the German armed forces.

Wireless Telegraphy

Heidi J.S. Tworek
Wireless telegraphy became an integral part of warfare on the ground, in the air, and at sea by 1918. Wireless helped to make the war global, though historians still debate its impact on the course of the war.

Feuillade, Louis

Manon Billaut
Louis Feuillade was a popular filmmaker in France in the years leading up to and during the First World War. He is known for his serial productions, which, with their cliffhangers, were effective at pulling in large crowds, week-after-week, especially during the war.

Between Acceptance and Refusal - Soldiers' Attitudes Towards War

André Loez
Soldiers’ attitudes towards the Great War are a controversial issue, as they prove difficult to assess and raise complex methodological questions. They evolved during the course of the conflict, from a broad acceptance of a defensive war in the summer of 1914, to war-weariness as early as winter 1914, to various and sometimes spectacular forms of refusal from 1917 onwards, although obedience and compliance remained the norm. Acceptance, endurance and refusal can further be explained...

Disease and Public Health (Ottoman Empire/Middle East)

Melanie Schulze-Tanielian
From 1914-1918 infectious diseases, such as typhus, recurrent fever, dysentery, malaria, etc., took advantage of the social disruption caused by a world at war. More Ottoman soldiers perished from the deadly effects of microbes and bacteria than from bullets and bombs. By outlining the causes, geographical distribution, and mortalities from the most prevalent infectious diseases in the Ottoman context, this article highlights not only the destructive effects of infectious diseases, but also their formative consequences...

Occupation during and after the War (Russian Empire)

Wolfram Dornik
Occupation played a crucial role in Eastern Europe between 1914 and 1921: the highly mobile front allowed trenches to be shifted over hundreds of miles, resulting in the usurpation of foreign lands. While Russia only managed to occupy Habsburg Galicia and Bukovina for a short time early in the war, these occupations later affected Imperial Russia’s territory. The Central Powers occupied Congress-Poland, the Baltic States, modern-day Belarus, Ukraine, Bessarabia, Crimea and even parts of the...

Governments, Parliaments and Parties (Russian Empire)

Fedor Aleksandrovich Gaida
At the beginning of World War I, Russian political parties found themselves in deep crisis. In contrast, the State Duma had become the epicenter of the country’s political life. The “Holy Alliance” established between the authorities and society was only a temporary break in the confrontation between government and parliamentary opposition. The political struggle renewed in the spring of 1915, resulting in the founding of the Progressive Bloc, and the confrontation reached its peak in...

Masaryk, Tomáš Garrigue

René Küpper
Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk was a Czech politician who started the Czechoslovak independence movement abroad. As head of the Czechoslovak National Council from 1916 to 1918, he provided an ideological basis for Czechoslovak propaganda, helped create the Czechoslovak Legions and was instrumental in securing the Entente’s recognition of Czechoslovakia as an allied state. In 1918 he became its first president.

Spanish Neutrality

Carolina García Sanz
The Spanish government maintained a benevolent neutrality policy towards the Entente Powers during the First World War. Liberal and Conservative cabinets decided it was the only position consistent with their country's traditionally friendly relations with Great Britain and France.

Sazonov, Sergeĭ Dmitrievich

Siobhan Peeling
Sergei Sazonov became Russian Foreign Minister in autumn 1910. In July 1914 he argued for a firm stance against Austrian aggression and general mobilisation of the army, but historians dispute his responsibility for the outbreak of war. His wartime diplomacy was often ineffectual, but it was domestic politics that prompted his dismissal in 1916.

Polish-Soviet War 1920-1921

Jarosław Centek
The hostilities between Bolshevik Russia and Poland started as early as 1919. In April 1920, Poland and Ukraine liberated Kiev from Bolshevik control. However, in the summer of 1919, the Bolsheviks managed to push the Poles back to the Vistula, although they were eventually defeated. The second Polish victory in the Battle of Neman finally brought the war to an end.

Palmer Raids

Charlene Fletcher Brown
The Palmer Raids were efforts by the United States Department of Justice to arrest and deport suspected leftists and anarchists between November 1919 and January 1920. In response to the growing fear of political radicalism, United States Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer orchestrated the Raids that resulted in more than 500 deportations.

Fourteen Points

Chris Thomas
The Fourteen Points were U.S. President Woodrow Wilson’s post World War I blueprint to end territorial disputes in Europe, promote international commerce, and make the world safe for democracy. They were based on the ideas of open trade and collective diplomacy, and introduced the concept of national self-determination.

Haller, Józef

Jan Snopko
General Józef Haller was one of the best known Polish military commanders of the First World War period, a lieutenant of the Polish Legions, commander of the II Brigade of the Polish Legions, commander of the Polish Army in France, Inspector General of the Volunteer Army and commander of the North-Eastern Front in the Polish–Soviet War of 1920.

Food and Nutrition (Italy)

Maria Concetta Dentoni
During the First World War, the Italian Government was unable to establish a realistic plan to feed the army and the civilian population; consequently there was a significant reduction in the consumption of even basic necessities, with hardships above all for the poorest. The inevitable protests and the risk that they could also involve the army, prompted the government to seek social consensus especially in resolving the food issue, favouring in this way, the emergence...

Bereavement and Mourning (Germany)

Silke Fehlemann
Bereavement was a central element of Germany’s experience in World War One. The majority of Germans coping with loss were women, often with young children to support. This article will analyze Germany’s approach to social welfare programs to support the bereaved as well as representations of grief, issues which both posed a challenge to wartime and post-war society.

Press/Journalism (Belgium)

Pierre Van Den Dungen
The Belgian press world was turned upside down by the German occupation. Most of the editorial offices of the news dailies ceased all activity or went abroad. Yet a press under censorship did continue to appear when the Germans set up a “''Pressezentrale''”' in 1915. This censored press underwent major transformations: Belgians were not dupes but wanted information at all costs. Meanwhile an underground press was established, of which ''La Libre Belgique'' was the most...

Polish National Units in Russia

Paweł Brudek
The Polish Army was born out of the chaos of revolutionary Russia. The Russian authorities accepted its establishment, and later the army sought an agreement with the occupying Germans. Polish units found themselves in a complicated legal and military situation, subjected to the political strategies and suspicions of Germans and Bolsheviks.

British Expeditionary Force

Peter Simkins
Between 1914 and 1918 the British Expeditionary Force grew from a small professional striking force into a mass army, which was not only bigger than any in Britain’s history, but was also capable of fighting and winning a modern, industrialised war on a continental scale.

Prisoners of War and Internees (Great Britain)

Panikos Panayi
During the First World War, hundreds of thousands of men found themselves interned in Britain. These were made up of: civilians already present in the country in August 1914; civilians brought to Britain from all over the world; and combatants, primarily soldiers from the Western Front, but also naval personnel and a few members of zeppelin crews, whose vessels fell to earth. Prisoners were interned in a large number of locations, and could spend years...

Wartime Emotions: Honour, Shame, and the Ecstasy of Sacrifice

Ute Frevert
Through investigating the pivotal role of honour in private and public matters, in foreign and domestic relations, and in propaganda and everyday life during the First World War, this article examines the practices of public shaming (e.g. regarding supposed cowards and enemy soldiers), and the devotion to sacrifice oneself and beloved ones. It traces the roots of these highly gendered concepts of honour and shame in the moral economy of Europe’s 19th century, deciphering the...

Kolchak, Aleksandr Vasil'evich

Evgenii Vladimirovich Volkov
Aleksandr Vasil'evich Kolchak was a Russian admiral and political figure. He participated in the Russo-Japanese War, the First World War, and the Russian Civil War. He was one of the leaders of the White movement in eastern Russia and was proclaimed Supreme Ruler.

Ypres Menin Gate

Dominiek Dendooven
The Menin Gate in Ypres is the best known of the memorials to the missing in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's care. Designed by architect Sir Reginald Blomfield it is where the Last Post, the only daily ceremony in the world commemorating the dead of the First World War, is held.


David S. Patterson
The idea of peace in [[Controversy-Total War|total war]] may seem irrelevant, but pacifism, or peace activism, did exist during the First World War. A seemingly robust European peace movement existed before 1914, but it contained internal divisions and mostly collapsed early in the war. Except for some historic peace sects, conscientious objection to military service was not officially accepted among the belligerents. Britain had the largest number of objectors, and new anti-conscription groups supported the...

Barbusse, Henri

Laurence Campa
Fulfilling the archetype of the war writer, Henri Barbusse is the embodiment of pacifist activism. His book ''Le Feu ''(1916) paved the way for a new genre, that of literary testimony. Acclaimed as soon as it was published, it has been considered as a classic of French war literature ever since.

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