Treaty of Versailles

Makers imageRGB.jpgThe Treaty of Versailles – officially known as The Treaty of Peace between the Allied and Associated Powers and Germany – was the treaty that formally ended the state of war between Germany and the Allies after the First World War. It was signed on 28th June 1919, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, which was one of the key events in triggering the war.
The terms of the Treaty were rather controversial. Article 231, for example, required, “Germany [to] accept the responsibility of Germany and her allies for causing all the loss and damage” during the war, which became known as the War Guilt clause. Other reparations included stripping Germany of 25,000 square miles of territory (in turn causing the loss of seven million citizens), heavily reducing the country’s armaments, military and police services, and to pay concessions to certain countries. In 1921, these concessions were estimated to be at around 132 billion Marks (then $31.4 billion or £6.6 billion). These reparations were criticised by many and loathed by many German citizens – including Adolf Hitler.

The Versailles Treaty June 28, 1919
The Avalon Project
Lillian Goldman Law Library
Yale Law School
Full text of the Treaty, in 15 sections

Primary Documents – Treaty of Versailles, 28 June 1919
First World War
Full text of the Treaty

Treaty of Versailles, text of Article 231, the “War Guilt Clause”
Facing History and Ourselves

Peace Treaty of Versailles
Articles 231-247 and Annexes
Text of articles dealing with reparations

Missing: A Father for a War-Guilt lie”
The Literary Digest, July 20, 1929
Old Magazine Articles
Copy of article describing German anger at the Treaty of Versailles

Treaty of Versailles and Nazism
Blog devoted to a discussion of the Treaty of Versailles in relation to the rise of the Nazis

Primary Sources
Treaty of Versailles and Nazism
Suggested readings with comments and observations of their contribution to understanding this event in historical context

Secondary Sources
Treaty of Versailles and Nazism
Suggested readings with comments and observations of their contribution to understanding this event in historical context

Aftermath of World War I: The Seeds of Future Conflict Sown
The Treaty of Versailles

Reaction to Treaty of Versailles
National Archives UK
Summaries of reactions to treaty in selected countries

The Treaty of Versailles
History Learning Site
Overview of the terms and consequences of the Treaty of Versailles.

Treaty of Versailles and Nazism

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Versailles and Peacemaking

The Impact of the Treaty of Versailles
Schools History UK
Discussion of impact of the treaty, with map of Europe before and after 1918, and links to additional information

What aspects of the Treaty of Versailles undermined the Weimar Republic?
Schools History UK

Versailles and Peacemaking
BBC History
Detailed discussion: ‘Should the Treaty of Versailles punish or rehabilitate Germany?’ Dr Ruth Henig examines the question that divided the Allies at the end of World War One.

Versailles Treaty
Spartacus International
Summary of main points, with reactions from various journalists and community leaders

The Treaty of Versailles
Detailed analysis of expectations and impact

Failure of Versailles
The March Toward War

Stab in the Back Legend
History Learning Site

Stab-in-the-back Myth

Hindenburg supports the stab in the back theory (1919)
Alpha History

Review of:
Boris Barth, Dolchstosslegenden und politische Desintegration: Das Trauma der deutschen Niederlage im Ersten Weltkrieg, 1914-1933
Book review by Harold Marcuse, with 15 “stab-in-the-back” illustrations

A Roll of Honor Commemorating the 12,000 German Jews
Who Died for their Fatherland in World War I.
German Jewish Soldiers
Searchable database of German Jewish soldiers who died fighting in WWI


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