These pages have been designed using Internet Explorer - they may not display correctly in other Browsers.

 

The Churchill Society
London.

Painting is a friend who makes no undue demands,
excites no exhausting pursuits,
keeps faithful pace with feeble steps,
and holds her canvas as a screen between us
and the envious eyes of Time
and the surly advance of decrepitude.

Happy are painters,
for they shall not be lonely,
light and colour,
peace and hope,
will keep them company to the end,
or almost to the end,
of the day.

Winston Churchill.

Schools

WHO WAS CHURCHILL?

THE MAIN INDEX

Search the web site.

Contact the society.

CHRONOLOGY

 

Flanders PoppyThe purpose of these pages is to tell the story of Churchill's life - not to give a detailed account of the wars he was involved in, for that is a vast subject.

Month by month factual and photographic calendars of the Ist World War
1914. 1915. 1916. 1917. 1918.

 It is important to remember that heavy censorship of news took place throughout them, and therefore knowledge of many of these events was not available until long after they happened - or until after the wars had ended.

Explanatory notes are given against some of these dates, but to read about particular battles or political events please go to Bibliography

 _______________________________

The First World War
also known as

The Great War

The Causes.
____________

Map available from International Art Editions
FREEPOST GL1950
Cheltenham Gloucestershire

UK GL52 6BR

The years from 1880 to 1914 saw in Europe a vast increase in industrial output, the expansion of rail and steam shipping, the importation of food from the New World on a scale undreamt of before, so that populations grew at unprecedented rates. The rising living standards and employment opportunities in central Europe attracted millions of people from the east away from their poverty, exploitation and often cruel persecution.

In addition, Victorian certainties were being challenged, indeed often shattered, in social, political, scientific, industrial, commercial and artistic spheres, thus creating a sense of uncertainty. Iconoclasm in the arts abounded to the immense shock of the people. In Europe, new music and painting became dissonant and violent. Attitudes everywhere in Central Europe became anxious and then agitated leading to revolutionary movements. People became alarmed about their future.

The vast size and efficiency of the German army and navy, its industry and technology, was in sharp contrast to its hopelessly out of date political system. This ensured the    military caste who surrounded the Kaiser's (King's) absolute authority - and their privileges

Having no say in government but having to pay for it, in 1913 the people began to demonstrate in Berlin.

As ever - when unable to control political unrest at home - tyrants identify a foreign  'enemy' . The Kaiser was, like many German people at that time. He - and they - considered that the demonstrators and strikers should be shot.

Because of many deep seated national and international tensions, the German people became more and more like their Kaiser - morally mentally and politically unstable; then more and more belligerent, to the great alarm of Germany's neighbours.

France had never forgiven her defeat by Germany and the loss in 1871 of Alsace and Lorraine. She feared another German attack.

Russia and the Austro-Hungarian Empire were also both industrialising at a very fast pace and like Germany also had antiquated governments which caused revolutionary conspiracies.

Russia and France were allies - a perfect situation to justify the Kaiser and his Prussian militarists to increase vastly the German Army and Navy.

It was not just the Kaiser who caused the war, it was also the arrogant Prussian militarists who surrounded and manipulated the vainglorious fool. The blind submission of the German people to such men - as this story of Churchill's life will relate - was to be the cause of immense suffering  twice  in the 20th century.

All the major European powers had overseas and European  .  These required armies to maintain control over these subject races; and they did so - often with great cruelty when insurrections took place. Russia occupied part of Poland; the Austro - Hungarian Empire controlled Bosnia. Britain ruled Ireland and had the largest empire the world had ever known - thus the need for naval supremacy. France occupied large areas of North Africa and the Far East. In all these territories there were revolutionary conspiracies which made both rulers and ruled nervous.

In 1914 the heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Arch Duke Franz Ferdinand, visited the outskirts of his empire - a place called Sarajevo in the Balkans. This area was then - as as it is still today - a place of many conflicting racial, religious and political hatreds. During his visit an attempt by Nationalist members of The Black Hand Movement to kill him with a bomb failed, but the bomb injured people in the following car. After completing his official duties that day, he and his wife went to the hospital to comfort the injured. Upon their return a young man jumped upon the running board of the car and shot them dead.

The upshot was that the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph - with Kaiser's support - declared war on Serbia.

Suddenly European alliance and treaty obligations came into force: Russia went to Serbia's aid, France to the aid of Russia, Germany to Austria, and after Germany's invasion of Belgium, Britain's to Belgium. No-one realised it but a world war had begun.

Pre War. Winston observing the Kaiser and his entourage.

Churchill is photographed on this page at German manoeuvres in 1913. He was in fact observing first hand and with an eagle eye Germany's ever increasing military preparations.

The desk on which the Kaiser signed the declaration of war has recently been discovered in an attic at Potsdam. It is made out of wood from HMS Victory and is carved in the form of Nelson's ship Victory. Along the back of the desk are flags forming Nelson's signal: "England expects this day that every man will do his duty." Signing the Declaration of War upon that table, the Kaiser sent a million Englishmen (and a million Germans also) to their quite needless deaths. He never expressed any sorrow about this after the war. He never suffered any discomfort nor lost his own life, nor did he know or even care about other peoples' lives. Such can be the ignorance and arrogance of Kings. He was allowed to live as an exile very comfortably after the war - though no longer permitted to be the king.

Such is the irony of history!

As you can see now - after years of planning and preparation for war and to expand her empire and thus keep her industries and armies busy, upon his foolish - indeed wicked - orders, Germany suddenly invaded her neighbours and tried to subjugate them.

England went to war in their defence.

Kaiser's Officer Declares War

The Kaiser give the order WAR !

Your country needs you !

Recruits and their Recruiting Sargent

Recruits and their Recruiting Sargent

Young men March to War

Young men March to War

Now in a war many unexpected things happen in a very short period of time and it is not possible for me to relate them all to you here. I know you will find it impossible to believe that such civilised people as Europeans could go about smashing up and burning everyone's homes and killing people who were complete strangers. But they did - and it lasted non-stop for four terrible years.

Every single working person in the combatant countries became involved one way or another. Nothing like it had ever been known in history before.

Fighting through a gas attack

Fighting through a Gas Attack The Somme 1915.

Flanders PoppyThe purpose of these pages is to tell the story of Churchill's life - not to give a detailed account of the wars he was involved in, for that is a vast subject.

Month by month factual and photographic calendars of the Ist World War

1914. 1915. 1916. 1917. 1918.

It is important to remember that heavy censorship of news took place throughout them, and therefore knowledge of many of these events was not available until long after they happened - or until after the wars had ended. Morevover, the experiences of the soldiers were so terrible, that of the the few who returned, none spoke of them for many many years.

Explanatory notes are given against some of these dates, but to read about particular battles or political events please go to Bibliography

___________________

Back to the top

___________________

THE STORY OF THE GREAT WAR.

1914.

The causes
of the Gt War.

1914.

Unfolding events
in the summer.

1914.

Autumn and early
winter

 

1915.

 

1916.

 

1917.

 

1918.

Armistice.

 

1919.

The aftermath.

The 1920's

 

. .SCHOOL INDEX .

 CHRONOLOGY

BIBLIOGRAPHY

THE MAIN INDEX

Search the web site.

Contact the society.

 

 

...................Ladybird.

__________________

Back to the top

Why not Bookmark this Page?

TO BECOME A MEMBER OF THE CHURCHILL SOCIETY.

To purchase an 80 minute CD of
Churchill's War Time Speeches
(one is given free to new members)

 

To purchase a Bust of Churchill.

Churchill Bust

 

To purchase the Double CD (or Tape Cassette)
of
Rutherlyn's

THE CHURCHILL MUSIC.



Reviews of The Churchill Music.

 

CLICK HERE.

(All the profits go towards the society's educational work).

_________________

DISCLAIMER

THE CHURCHILL SOCIETY

Internet pages provide general information only.

Whilst we make every endeavour to check our facts, mistakes do occur.

The society cannot be held liable for any special, direct, indirect or consequential damages.

It is your responsibility to verify the accuracy of any information supplied by e mail
or contained on any of these pages.
__________