Monday, January 18, 2016

Germany in 1900

In honour of today's 145th anniversary of the proclamation of the German Empire, and to go with my new Taschen book, I've created a new page of my website on Germany in 1900. It is too often forgotten that Imperial Germany was not just the Kaisers but included some twenty other reigning monarchs--kings, grand dukes, dukes, and princes--who I rather enjoyed looking up to get their pictures and dates. My favourite of these rulers is probably Georg II of Saxe-Meiningen, the brilliantly artistic "Theatre Duke." Between Wikipedia and Die souveränen Fürstenhäuser Europas
I was able to find age-appropriate pictures of almost everyone, except for Alexander Prince of Lippe (who was mentally ill, reigning with a regency), and the morganatic second wife of Heinrich XXIV Prince Reuss.

It has long struck me as one of the greatest injustices of modern history that, whatever one thinks of the causes of World War I, surely the interior German monarchies cannot be blamed at all, yet they were all dragged down in the apocalypse of November 1918. May they never be forgotten, and somehow one day restored to their charming and occasionally eccentric glory.

7 comments:

Pair O' Dimes said...

I like it! Any particular reason, though, that you chose the year 1900?

Theodore Harvey said...

Yes: besides the fact that it's a nice round number marking the beginning of the 20th century, I recently acquired both a large book of colorized photographs of Germany around 1900 (see the "Bored Panda" link) and a wall map of the world as it was in 1900, so this goes well with them.

Pair O' Dimes said...

Ah, okay, I see. Thanks for explaining!

God bless!

J.K. Baltzersen said...

Wonderful new page, sir!

The 20th century, BTW, begins with 1901.

Theodore Harvey said...

Technically yes; psychologically and culturally, not really. What's significant in the turn of a century is how we write the date, and that changed in 1900, even more so in 2000.

Theodore Harvey said...

And thanks; I'm glad you liked the page!

J.K. Baltzersen said...

Appearance over substance.

But there are worse illusions that people fall for, like democracy, modern democracy in particular...