Detailed Timeline of European History


 Detailed Timeline of
European History


Pre-World War I
(1816-1914)
 << World War I (1914-19)
>>

Inter-War Period (1919-39)


Great War/World War I
(1914
– 1919)

A New Terrible Type of Warfare, New
Nations Created in Europe

WWI Timeline:  |
1914
|

1915

|

1916

|

1917


1918 

|

1919

|


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History Interactive Map

World War I
Interactive Map

Effect of
World War I on Each Country

Beginning of Finnish Civil War
(Jan, 1918):
The Red Guard was in favor of a
Soviet-style communist government, with close leanings towards Lenin’s
Soviet Union. The Whites were in favor of a democratic Republic. The
Reds were supported by Russian (Soviet Union) troops, while the Whites
were supported by the German Empire.

(Timeline Continued Below)


Germany Occupies Finland
(May, 1918):
After the Whites gained victory
over the Reds in the Finnish Civil War in the same year fighting began
(1918), they came under German control.


Defeat of GermanyGerman Offensive Halted by Allies on
Western Front (May, 1918):
In early 1918,
the Germans were able to reallocate a large number of soldiers from the
eastern front to the western front, due to the withdrawal of the
Russians from the war. By Spring, they had pushed the front lines 60
miles to the west, within shelling distance of Paris. However, by the
May, the Americans were being incorporated into the front lines, halting
the German advance.

Allied Counter-Offensive on Western
Front Breaks Germany (Aug-Nov, 1918):
Once the
Americans were placed into battle (more than 2 million in number), the
Allies outnumbered the Germans, and by summer, began routinely breaking
the German lines, causing Germans to surrender in large numbers. In
November, the Germans signed an armistice to end all fighting on the
western front, due primarily to mounting losses on the battlefield, and
lack of continued support for the war at home.


Defeat of Austria-HungaryItaly Defeats Austria
(Nov 3, 1918):
After penetrating into NE Italy
in 1917, the Austrians planned to break through Italian lines in order
to capture key cities, such as Lombardy and Venice. The first effort in
summer of 1918 was a terrible failure, resulting in the death of 100,000
Austrian troops. One final effort was made in October, which completely
devastated the Austrian army, forcing them to end hostilities by signing
an armistice, even though their front line was still inside the borders
of Italy.

Germany Forced to Withdraw from Eastern
European Countries (Nov, 1918):
Upon ceding
defeat due to its heavy losses on the Western Front, and the withdrawal
of its own allies, Germany is forced to withdraw from Finland, Estonia,
Latvia, and Lithuania, enabling each to assert their own independence.

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German Revolution Begins
(Nov, 1918)
:
Before the signing of the armistice that ended the
fighting in WWI, German sailors refused orders to engage in a naval
battle against the British in the North Sea. The revolt spread
throughout Germany, forcing the resignation of the Emperor in November.
Immediately after, the interim government pulled Germany from the war.
Political and civil strife, including armed conflicts would continue
until the Weimar Republic was established in 1919. Small-scale armed
rebellions would continue after that until as late as 1923.


End of World War IGerman Interim Government Officially
Withdraws from War (Nov 11, 1918):
With
the war effort taking a turn for the disastrous for Germany, the emperor
resigns on Nov 9. Just two days later, the interim government signs an
armistice to end fighting. Germany was doomed when the Allies gained the
decisive upper hand on the Western Front, after all of its fellow
Central Powers had withdrawn from fighting in the face of defeat.

Ottomans Cede Defeat, Occupied by
Allies (Nov, 1918):
In 1918, the Allies
achieved a series of decisive victories against the Ottomans in
Palestine and Arabia. Baghdad was captured in 1917. Toward the end of
1918, the British and French had forced the Ottoman armies into a full
retreat, inside Anatolia (modern Turkey), forcing an Ottoman surrender.
The Allies would proceed to occupy various parts of the Ottoman Empire,
including areas in Anatolia, the heart of the empire. It was the
intention of the Allies to subdivide the entire Ottoman Empire amongst
themselves, ending the sovereignty of the Turks and its dependents. As
1918 came to an end, the Turks began to take part in passive and active
resistance, a precursor to Turkish War of Independence that would begin
in 1919.

Independent Democratic Republic in
Finland (Dec, 1918):
Upon their official
defeat in WWI, Germany relinquished control of Finland, enabling the
Finns to form a sovereign government for first time (democracy).

Great Poland Uprising Against German
Occupiers (Dec, 1918):
After
acknowledging defeat in November of 1918, the Germans continued to
occupy Poland. The Polish, badly desiring independence, knew that the
Germans were weakened, and were suffering from internal dissension. By
December, the timing was right for an uprising. By early 1919, Polish
rebel forces had overwhelmed German soldiers, taking control of their
country, and becoming a sovereign republic.


PolandWest Prussia & Posen Lost by Germany
Due to Russian-Supported Polish Revolt (1918):

Awarded to Poland at the end of WWI. Poland gained part of this
territory during the Great Poland Uprising, which began in 1918 and
ended with the complete withdrawal of German troops in 1919. When it was
clear to the Polish that the Germans were weakened from their defeat,
and racked with internal strife, they were encouraged to revolt against
their German occupiers. As a result, Germany’s East Prussia was now
separated from the rest of Germany.

Ottomans Defeat Armenians in the
Caucasus Region (1918):
Russia cedes
territories gained in NE Anatolia as part of its withdrawal from the
war. Armenians take the mantle though, and declare war on the Ottoman
Empire, in an effort to carve out an independent Armenian nation. They
are initially successful, before being overpowered by the Ottomans.

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African Theater
(1918)
:
A small German army continued to fight against Allies
in East Africa until the armistice was signed by Germany to end all
fighting in November of 1918. Upon receiving word, the small army left
for Germany, as Germany had ceded any and all claims in Africa. This
German armed unit never lost a battle, but it was too small to hold
ground, and was continually on the move until the end of the war.


RomaniaRomania Liberated from German Control
(1918):
Romania had been forced into a
peace treaty with Germany in 1917, since it was surrounded by enemy
forces with the retreat and withdrawal of Russia. In 1918, after
Austria-Hungary withdrew from the war, and Germany was at its breaking
point, Romania officially re-entered the war on the side of the Allies,
just one day before Germany would concede defeat to the Allies. German
forces were quickly withdrawn, liberating Romania just as the war ended,
while also invalidating the peace treaty which awarded portions of
Romania to the Central Powers.

Bessarabia Awarded to Romania at
Expense of Russia (1918):
This
traditionally Romanian region opted to leave Russia and become enjoined
with Romania during the 1917 Communist Revolution. This was reaffirmed
by the victorious Allies at the end of the war.

Transylvania Gained by Romania from
Hungary (1918):
The Romanians claimed
Transylvania upon the end of the war, due to its majority Romanian
population. Transylvania also contained a substantial Hungarian
population, but the Allies preferred to award the region to Romania, a
fellow ally.


Territory Ceded by Austria to Poland
(1918):
Polish-dominated region ceded
to Poland from Austria-Hungary at the end of the war, at the urging of
the Allies.

Alsace-Lorraine Lost to France at End
of War (1918):
As a concession to end
the war, the Germans would cede Alsace-Lorraine to France. This region
was traditionally French, but was gained by Prussia during the
Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71. It was a strategic territory with
abundant coal deposits and a strong industrial infrastructure, which
played a major role in the German build-up to WWI.

Allied-Mandated Separation of Austria
and Hungary (1918):
The Allies mandated
that Austria and Hungary separate according to traditional territorial
divisions. It was also mandated that Austria not combine with its fellow
Germans of the newly-reconstituted German Empire, even though most
Austrians favored unification with Germany.

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Formation of the Kingdom of Serbs,
Croats and Slovenes Upon Break-Up of Austria-Hungary
(1918):
As fervent nationalism took
much of Europe by storm during the 1800s, the South Slav nations had
their own dreams of consolidating. This became more realistic as the
Serbs escaped Ottoman rule, but the dream was blocked by
Austria-Hungarian control of the Slovenes, Croats and Bosnians. Efforts
to free Slavs under Austrian control contributed to the start of WWI. As
WWI approached conclusion, and it was evident that Austria-Hungary would
be defeated, the plans for a South Slav state were set into motion. The
Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (which also included Bosnians,
Montenegrins and Macedonians) was officially formed on Dec. 1, 1918,
just weeks after the fighting came to an end.


Post World War I Europe

(Timeline Continued Below)

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Czechs and Slovaks Unite for Form
Czechoslovakia (1918):
Both were
repressed regions in the Austria-Hungary. Both also had a strong Slav
heritage (Czech mixed with German, and Slovak mostly Slavic), each
identifying more with Slav heritage. The Czechs had a greater capability
of self-government in place. Hungary wanted to retain Slovakia, which
was far less ready to govern itself. The Slovaks were far more inclined
to join the Czechs than to remain with the repressive Hungarians, so the
Czechs, with the permission of the Allies, moved in to occupy Slovakia.
Hungary was unable to do anything about it after having just been
thoroughly defeated in WWI. Thus, the new state of Czechoslovakia was
formed. Naturally, the state was dominated by the Czechs. Despite being
unified, ethnic differences would remain, eventually leading to a
peaceful split in 1992, resulting in the successor states of the Czech
Republic and Slovakia.

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WWI Timeline:  |
1914
|

1915

|

1916

|

1917


1918 

|

1919

|

Next:
World War I (1919)

Previous:
World War I (1917)

Effect of
World War I on Each Country


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