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Weimar Republic facts for kids

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German Reich

Deutsches Reich
1918–1933
Coat of arms of Weimar Republic
Coat of arms
Motto: "Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit"
"Unity and Justice and Freedom"
Anthem: 
Das Lied der Deutschen
(English: "Song of the Germans")
Germany in 1930
Germany in 1930
German states in 1920s (Free State of Prussia with its provinces shown in blue)
German states in 1920s (Free State of Prussia with its provinces shown in blue)
Capital

Berlin

Weimar (de facto)
Common languages Official:
German
Religion
1925 census
64.1% Protestant (Lutheran, Reformed, United)
32.4% Roman Catholic
0.9% Jewish
2.6% Other
Government 1919–30 Federal
semi-presidential
constitutional republic
1930–33 De facto authoritarian
presidential republic
President  
• 1919–25
Friedrich Ebert
• 1925–33
Paul von Hindenburg
Chancellor  
• 1919 (first)
Philipp Scheidemann
• 1933 (last)
Adolf Hitler
Legislature Reichstag
• State Council
Reichsrat
Historical era Interwar period
• Established
9 November 1918
• Government by decree begins
29 March 1930
• Hitler appointed Chancellor
30 January 1933
27 February 1933
23 March 1933
Area
1925 468,787 km2 (181,000 sq mi)
Population
• 1925
62,411,000
Currency
Preceded by
Succeeded by
German Empire
Nazi Germany

The Weimar Republic (German: Weimarer Republik [ˈvaɪmaʁɐ ʁepuˈbliːk]), officially the German Reich (German: Deutsches Reich), also referred to as the German People's State (German: Deutscher Volksstaat) or simply the German Republic (German: Deutsche Republik), is the name now used for the republic that governed Germany from 1919 to 1933.

Origin

After the German Empire was defeated in World War I, Germany became a republic, but it was still called "Deutsches Reich" (German Empire). Today it is called the Weimar Republic and this period is called the Weimar period, because the constitution was made in the city of Weimar.

Beginning

On November 9, 1918, the Republic was proclaimed by Philipp Scheidemann at the Reichstag building in Berlin and two hours later a socialist republic was proclaimed around the corner at the Berlin Castle by Karl Liebknecht.

The Emperor, or Kaiser, Wilhelm II, went into exile in the Netherlands. The new Republic was declared even before the end of World War I.

Problems

The Weimar Republic had a lot of problems. The Treaty of Versailles made things very difficult for the economy. Inflation got completely out of hand. There were political problems because governments ruled only for a very short time, not long enough to be able to make important decisions. There were a lot of radical right and left extremists, for example monarchists (people who wanted back the monarchy) and communists, who believed that all things, especially property, land and money, should be shared. Political parties had their own militias to fight each other.

One of the paramilitary organizations that arose after World War I was the German: Stahlhelm, Bund der Frontsoldaten meaning "Steel Helmet, League of Front Soldiers". They operated as the armed branch of the national conservative German National People's Party (DNVP). they were placed at party gatherings in the position of armed security guards (Saalschutz). In 1935 they became part of the Nazi Party.

Positives

The Weimar period is also known for its culture. Artists tried out modern ideas and used new things like film. The Bauhaus began in the 1920s too.

End

What we now call The Weimar Republic came to an end on 23 March 1933, when Chancellor Adolf Hitler installed the Enabling Act, which established the Third Reich.


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