Armistice Day

The Great War

Europe 1918.1111

Armistice Day

World War I in Europe and the Russian Revolution (11 November 1918)

Historical Map of Europe & the Mediterranean

Following the German Revolution of November 1918, a republic was proclaimed and the Kaiser fled the country. On November 11, the new German government signed an armistice with the Allies. The Great War was at an end, but chaos still reigned across much of Europe.

Main Events

German Republic proclaimed

German Chancellor Max von Baden announced the abdication of the German Kaiser Wilhelm II and turned the government over to the Social Democrat Party (SPD). Despite SPD leader Friedrich Ebert's wishes to retain the monarchy, SPD chairman Philipp Scheidemann then announced the end of the German monarchy and the creation of a new German Republic from the balcony of the Reichstag in Berlin. Unable to secure the loyalty of the army, the Kaiser fled to the Netherlands the following day.

Romania Declares War on Germany

Following the surrender of Bulgaria and the arrival of Allied forces in southern Romania, a new pro-Allied government under General Constantine Coanda had taken power in Romania on 8 November 1918. On 10 November, Romania declared war on Germany.

Republic of Alsace-Lorraine

Inspired by the revolution elsewhere in Germany, demonstrators rallied in Strasbourg and, on 11 November, the Soldier's Council (Soviet) of Strasbourg proclaimed the independent Republic of Alsace-Lorraine. The Soviet was opposed by the National Council of Alsace-Lorraine, which declared itself the sole legal authority and requested French military assistance to restore order. The French arrived on 21 November, bringing an end to the Soviet.

Armistice of Compiègne

At 5am Paris time, Germany signs an armistice with the Allies in railway carriage No. 2419 D at Compiègne, France, to end its involvement in World War I. The armistice goes into effect at 11am and, although not a formal surrender, demands that the Germans withdraw their troops to behind their own borders, renounce the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, release all prisoners, promise to pay reparations, and surrender their fleet and materials.

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