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Birth of Weimar Republic

In the 20th century Germany was a powerful empire. It took up the cause of Austria against England, France and Russia (Allies) and fought the First World war between 1914 and 1918. Many countries joined the war hoping to get some gain, without realizing the fact that the war would prolong and drain Europe of its resources. Though Germany made initial gains by occupying France and Belgium, the Allies became stronger when the US joined them in 1917 and defeated Germany and the Central Powers.

The defeat of Germany resulted in the abdication of the Emperor. This gave an opportunity for the parliamentary parties to bring in a change in the German polity A democratic constitution with a federal structure was formed by the National Assembly, which met at Weimar. Deputies to the German parliament or Reichstag were elected on the basis of universal adult franchise which included even women.

               Defeat of Germany


                      Federal Structure formed by National Assembly

This Republic became unpopular especially after the First World War. At the end of the First World War a peace treaty was signed at Versailles with the Allies, which was harsh and humiliating. According to the Versailles treaty.

1. Germany lost its

  • Overseas colonies 
  • One tenth of its population 
  • 13% of its territories 
  • 75% of its iron and 
  • 26% of its coal to France, Poland, Denmark and Lithuania.
  • 2. The Allied powers demilitarized Germany to weaken its power.

    3. The War Guild Clause held Germany responsible for the war and damages the Allied countries suffered.

    Germany was forced to pay a compensation of £ 6 billion.

    The Allied armies occupied the resource rich Rhineland.

    For all these disgrace many Germans accused the Weimar Republic.

                    Weimar Republic - Coins

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