Establishment of the Weimar Republic Section 2

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The Peace Settlement of Versailles

Territorial Losses 

  • Treaty removed over 70,000 km2 of German territory 
  • Cities such as Danzig become a free state under League of Nations 
  • Oversees colonies = placed under League of Nations control 
  • States were divided between allies 


  • Germany surrenderd all heavy weapons & dismantled fortifications in the Rhineland 
  • Germany's army & navy were limited 100,000 men & 15,000 men 
  • Forbidden from having an air force 

War Guilt Clause 

  • Responsible for starting the war £6.6 billion 
  • Article 231 of treaty war guilt clause 
  • Germany had to pay reparations to alies to cover costs for damage 
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The Peace Settlement of Versailles

The Rhineland 

  • Left & right bank of Rhine 
  • Allied army of occupation based to ensure Germany fulfilled Treaty obligations 

The Saarland 

  • Area of South Western Germany 
  • Placed under League of Nations control for 15 years 
  • Supplied France, Belguim, Italy etc 
  • France = exploited coal mines 

Anschluss Forbidden 

  • Austria = forbidden from uniting with Germany 

League of Nations - not allowed into 

War Crimes - Kaiser & others put on trial for war crimes

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Terms of the Treaty of Versailles was result of un


  • Wilson's 14 points & armistice agreement - Germany expected to hand over assets 
  • German disarmament 


  • Treaty - not as severe as might have been 
  • Allies resisted French attempt at extending French border to Rhineland 
  • Reparations = much lower than French demanded = not beyond Germany's capacity to pay 
  • If Germany had won the war the peace settlement would have been very harsh on the defeated Allies 
  • Germany had already punished Russia 
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Signing of the Versailles Treaty

Political impact 

  • Rejection of German request & demands for acceptance of the treaty = caused political crisis 
  • Scheidemann & some ministers reject this 
  • Majority of SPD = sign treaty 
  • Most sensible course - to sign the treaty whilst negotiating modifications with it 
  • Led many German nationalists to join groups to over throw th Republic 
  • 'lacked legitimacy & 'betrayed fatherland'
  • Political demoralisation 
  • Alienated moderates 
  • Treaty turned some supporters against Weimar Republic 

Many working class soldiers accepted new Republic 

  • America = negative 
  • Treaty = unfair on Germany 
  • GB&F - used treaty to enrich themselves at German expense 
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