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Treitschke

heinrich, von, york, germany, german and english

TREITSCHKE, Heinrich von, German historian: b. Dresden, 15 Sept. 1834; d. Berlin, 28 April 1896. He was educated at the univer sities of Bonn and Leipzig and early advocated a German union in his writings. In 1858 he was appointed lecturer in history at the Uni versity of Leipzig and became the most popular teacher at that institution. He also became known to the general public through a series of lectures on the constitutional history of Ger many. He was a close student of the political trend in Germany and in 1864 he advocated a German union under Prussian leadership. About 1865 he was appointed to a lectureship at Freiburg, but he resigned the following year to become editor of the Preussische Jahrbiicher. His strong and sometimes violent opposition to modern liberal tendencies in government led to frequent bickerings with Brentano, Schmoller and other economists and led to his resignation. He was next at the University of Kiel, at Heidelberg in 1867-73, and after 1873 held a chair at the University of Berlin. After the formation of the empire in 1871 Treitschke was elected to the Reichstag. At first a National Liberal he became ever more and more con servative. His uncompromising Germanism caused him to make violent attacks on all opin ions and all party groups in which he saw some thing injurious to the rise of the German Empire. He was now one of those who sang the praises of the Hohenzollerns and in the days of the Kulturkampf he ably supported the government. Treitschke attacked the Ultra montanes, the Socialists and the Jews. In Great Britain he saw the chief obstacle to Ger man imperialism and colonial expansion. He was responsible for most of the anti-British feeling in Germany in the last decade of his life. In England he remained comparatively unknown, until the outbreak of the war in 1914 caused renewed discussion of Germany's polit ical thought in the closing quarter of the 19th century. His writings were now translated and extensively circulated. Treitschke was attacked

as one of the instigators of the war; his anti English utterances were quoted in proof of the allegation that he foresaw an unavoidable con flict between the two countries.

As a historian Treitschke is highly regarded. His especial claim to fame is his 'Deutsche Geschichte im neunzehnten Jahrhundert' (5 vols., 1874-94; English translation,-7 vols., New York 1915 et seq.). This work was incomplete at the author's death, ending with a discussion of the events preceding the Revolution of 1848. This history is one of the classics of Germany because of its power of style, skilful character delineation and vigorous narration. Its faults are discursiveness, bad arrangement and ex tremepartisanship. Other works are (Zehn Jahre deutscher ICisnpfe, Schriften zur Tages politik> (1874; 3d ed., 1897) ; 'Der Sozialismus und seine GOnner> (1875); 'Der Sozialismus und der Meuchelmord' (1878) ; 'Ein Wort fiber unser Judentum) (1880) ; 'Historische und politische Aufsatze) (1865; 1870; 1897); 'Zwei Kaiser' (1888) ; collected lectures on political subjects (2 vols., 1907) ; wahlte Schriften' (2 vols., 1907). Selections from the 'Politik' have appeared in English (London 1914). There is in English a collec tion of Treitschke's essays between 1871 and 1895, entitled 'Germany, France, Russia and Islam' (London 1915). Consult Davis, H. W. C., 'The Political Thought of Heinrich von Treitschke' (1915) ; Schiemann, T., 'Heinrich von Treitschkes Lehr. und Wanderjahre' (2d. ed., Munich 1898) ; Hausrath, A., Zur Erin nerung an Heinrich von Treitschke (Leipzig 1901) ; id., His Doctrine and His Life' (New York 1914) ; McCabe, Joseph, 'Treitschke and the Great War) (New York 1914) ; McClure, E.,