Margaret MacMillan

The War that Ended Peace

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The First World War followed a period of sustained peace in Europe during which people talked with confidence of prosperity, progress, and hope. But in 1914, Europe walked into a catastrophic conflict that killed millions, bled its economies dry, shook empires and societies to pieces, and fatally undermined Europe's dominance of the world. It was a war that could have been avoided up to the last momentso why did it happen? Beginning in the early nineteenth century and ending with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, award-winning historian Margaret Macmillan uncovers the huge political and technological changes, national decisions, and just as important, the small moments of human muddle and weakness that led Europe from peace to disaster. This masterful exploration of how Europe chose its path towards war will change and enrich how we see this defining moment in history.
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1,189 printed pages

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Quotes

    Bas Grasmayerhas quoted7 years ago
    Although the war with Japan and the subsequent revolutionary upheavals in 1905 set Russian development back, it picked up again rapidly in the last years before the Great War. By 1913 Russia was the biggest agricultural producer in Europe and in industry was catching up fast with the other industrial powers.
    Bas Grasmayerhas quoted7 years ago
    Indeed, the king of Bulgaria, a country which Germany hoped to make an ally of, once left Berlin ‘white-hot with hatred’ after the Kaiser smacked him on the bottom in public.
    Bas Grasmayerhas quoted7 years ago
    If you wish to get on with the people with whom you are living, you must not be looking for perpetual opportunities of getting a little advantage over them; you must view your own claims and theirs in a just and neighbourly spirit, – on the one hand never sacrificing any important and genuine right in respect to which you think that oppression or encroachment is being attempted, – and, on the other hand, abstaining from erecting small controversies into envenomed disputes and treating every difference as a matter of vital principle.

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