Monday I
Wednesday VI
Friday VI

The first term's materials are here;
and here is the syllabus.

The Treaty of

Say three clever things about the famous painting on the left, William Orpen's The Signing of Peace in the Hall of Mirrors, Versailles (here it is on a larger scale). Why is it so disturbing?

2. What do you make of this stamp? What was Woodrow Wilson like?

3. Germany never quite accepted that Versailles was legitimate because she did not really believe she had lost the war. Why? Study this headline and this photo.

4. Here is the hand-out on Versailles

5. Study the following cartoons, and write an intelligent explanation of each. Whose is the point of view in each cartoon? What is it saying about the Treaty?

The Treaty of

1. The settlement of 1918-1923 is still bitterly contested in the Near East. A lot of the nastiness of modern world politics follows from the decisions about the Near East made in those years.
Sčvres has a very bad press. The temporary winners (the Greeks, the British, the French) don't like to dwell on it. The permanent winners (the Arabs) don't like to remember who gave them independence. And among the embittered losers are
the Armenians;
the Kurds;
the Turks.
Look at these images, and write a sentence on why each people still resents what happened.

2. Here is the hand-out on Sčvres

The Treaty of

1. What is the point of the excellent cartoon on the left?

2. Here is what the Dual Monarchy looked like before the disaster of World War One. The coronation of Francis Joseph, who reigned from 1848 to 1916, and his over-sexed wife Sisi, as King and Queen of Hungary; the wedding of Blessed Charles, Francis Joseph's greatnephew, heir to the throne, with Zita of Parma; the funeral of poor old Francis Joseph. Charles succeeded him as emperor - not for long.

3. Three animated accounts of the Treaty of St Germain.

4. Here's the actual text. Find Article LXXXVIII. Why does it matter so much?

5. Here is the hand-out on St Germain

The Treaty of

1. Here is an excellent video summary.

2. Here is the hand-out on Neuilly.

3. Videos of Bulgaria in World War One: 1, 2, 3. This is very good, but it's in Bulgarian.

4. Watch these for homework They still really really care about this stuff in Bulgaria: 1, 2, 3, 4.

23 April
Test on Neuilly and the other treaties.

25 April
Assignment on Treaty of Neuilly.

27 April: no class. A public holiday, 'Resistance Day',
commemorating the establishment on 26th April 1941 of the so-called Liberation Front of the Slovenian People. Since we are historians, we do not have to believe tosh. The Front was simply a Communist organisation, obedient to Stalin, who was Hitler's ally; it therefore did not resist Italian and German occupation until Hitler attacked Russia in June. After that it settled down to the serious business of creating a Communist society through genocide, killing in cold blood some half a million people, essentially for being anti-communists. When the war ended the Front renamed itself renamed Socialist Alliance of the Working People of Slovenia and seized power; the Tito dictatorship “probably killed even more people, now also including the rich, landlords, bourgeoisie, clerics, and in the later 1940s, even pro-Soviet communists.” A holiday's a holiday, so we can't complain, but the idea of ‘Resistance Day’ itself calls out for resistance. Down with all tyranny, fascist or communist.

4 May
Instead of the Treaty of Trianon, you inspect sewage

The Treaty of

9 May
Trianon was perhaps the most drastic and controversial element in the post-War settlement.
.....Hungary was not, you would think, particularly guilty: she had been dragged into the war by her Austrian partners. (Make sure you understand exactly how Austria-Hungary worked.)
.....But Hungary was surrounded by enemy states, who all wanted to seize Hungarian land, and full of ethnic minorities who were whipped into resentment and nationalist fervour by agitators.
.....The Treaty of Trianon was forced on the hopeless Hungarians in June 1920. Apart from the usual reparations and limits on future military structure, the Treaty imposed territorial penalties which were fantastically severe. Lands which had been Hungarian for a millennium went to Poland, Czechoslovakia, Rumania, Jugoslavia, Italy and even Austria. Among the losses was Prekmurje, given to the Jugoslavs and now part of Slovenia. (Class trip?)
.....Hungary lost an appalling 72% of her territory, and two-thirds of her population. Almost a third of the Hungarian race was left outside the rump Hungary, transformed into minorities. This minorities was badly treated for many years, and is still badly treated in Slovakia (where you can be fined for for using Hungarian when conducting business, or publishing books, or singing in public).

.....Study these maps carefully.
1. Here is what the Hapsburg monarchy looked like before 1914: yellow is for the Kingdom of Hungary (which included the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia, Kraljevina Hrvatska i Slavonija).
2. Here are the subdivisions of the monarchy.
3. This map shows the destruction of the monarchy in the years after World War One.

.....It is necessary to master the geography of Trianon in detail. Working in groups, tackle these blank maps.
4. Here is Central Europe in 1914. Carefully mark in the boundaries of the Kingdom of Hungary.
5. Label each province of Austria-Hungary (the blue dots are the provincial capitals).
6. This map shows the alliances of World War One: carefully label every country.
7. Here are Hungary's losses at Trianon. Mark in the names of the lost territories: Upper Hungary, Prekmurje, Burgenland, Transylvania, Croatia-Slavonia, Sub-carpathia, Vojvodina.

.....Now make sure you have mastered all these details. You will be tested on Friday.

21 May

We need to understand Hungarian history if we want to understand the trauma of Trianon.
.....Get these five dates fixed in your head: 896, 1000, 1526, 1867, 1920.

.....1. 896: One of the worst things that ever happened to civilised Europe was the descent of the Magyars, the ancestors of the modern Hungarians. They were ferocious nomads from the centre of Asia. In 896 they sacrificed one of their nobles to their horse-gods, made his son, Árpád, their chieftain, then rode over the Carpathian mountains, seized on the Great Plain around the Danube, subdued the cities, and settled. Here is what the Carpathian basin looks like; you'll see it has natural boundaries, which were the boundaries of Hungary for a thousand years. The red on this map shows the areas still with a Magyar majority.
..... The event of 896 is known to the Hungarians as the Honfoglalás, the conquest of the homeland. It defines what Hungary is. A film called Honfoglalás (The Conquest) was made in 1996 to celebrate the 1100th anniversary of the conquest: here's the whole film, here are music vids with the pith of it.

.....2. 1000: For a century the Magyars had a grand time of it, raiding all Europe from that base, sacking cities from Toledo to Denmark, from Brittany to Greece. The prayer Sagittis hungarorum libera nos Domine, From the arrows of the Hungarians, Lord deliver us became a standard part of Christian liturgy.
.....Eventually the Pope sent a very brave bishop named Adalbert to preach to the Magyars, even to their ferocious chieftain, Vajk. Vajk listened; he was converted; he was baptised as Stephen; and he became remarkably devout. He converted his people. The Pope sent him a sacred or apostolic crown, and on Christmas Day 1000 Stephen was crowned with it as ‘Apostolic King’ of Hungary.
.....The Apostolic Kingdom St Stephen founded was unique. It was not the king who was sovereign: the Apostolic Crown itself was sovereign, embodying as it did the divine gift of ploticial order to the Hungarian people. All Hungarians were members of the Christiane Respublica, the commonwealth of Christians on earth; they were in fact part of the crown, which is their preeminent symbol; and the 'Lands of St Stephen', with their fixed (and natural) boundaries were a sacred inheritance of the Hungarian people.
.....In 1945, when the communist hordes overran Hungary, the crown was smuggled to Fort Knox in America. Now it is back in Budapest, guarenteeing the continuity of the Hungarian state.

23 May
.....3. 1526: This doctrine of the Holy Crown gave the Apostolic Kingdom remarkable cohesion. It endured for almost a thousand years, despite lots of turmoil. More centuries it survived even the terrible blowss of Islam: Hungary was Europe's defence against the Ottoman Turks. Then came the catastrophic Battle of Mohács in 1526, when the Turks annihilated the Hungarians’ army, killed their nineteen year-old king, Louis II, Árpád’s descendent, and overran almost all the kingdom. Here is a fine dramatised documentary about Mohács.
.....Still Hungary did not die. A slither next to Austria resisted conquest, and the Austrian emperor became king of this rump (‘Royal Hungary’). From now on the Hapsburg family would provide Hungary’s kings, and the fate of Hungary would be bound up the fate of Austria.

.....4. 1867: In the late seventeenth century the Turks were driven out of Hungary by the Austrians, who then ruled Hungary as a mere province for two more centuries. A nationalist revolution in 1848 was crushed savagely.
.....But in 1867 the weakened Austrian Empire reformed itself by the Ausgleich or Compromise, and became a Dual Monarchy: Austria-Hungary, or the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The sovereignty of the Kingdom of Hungary was restored; a Hungarian parliament and government would run Hungarian affairs from Budapest. Unity was maintained by the Hapsburg monarch: Franz Joseph would be both Emperor of Austria and Apostolic King of Hungary, and the armed forces of the two partners in the Dual Monarchy would remain one. The flag is as shown.
.....The Dual Monarchy was a success, although the Slavs who were now subject to the Budapest government resented the attempt to Magyarise them, or make them into Hungarians, in areas where racial Magyars were not the majority.

25 May
.....5. 1920: Hungary went to war with Russia, France and Britain in summer 1914, enthusiastically enough. At first things went well: Serbia and then Rumania were overrun, Italy pushed back, Russia defeated. When the King-Emperor Franz Joseph died in late 1916, his great-nephew Charles (a saint, strangely enough) succeeded him as the Emperor Karl I of Austria, and was crowned with the Holy Crown of St Stephen as King Károly IV of Hungary. But by then Hungary had seen the writing on the wall, and was trying to get out of the war. It failed, and in autumn 1918 the Central Powers suddenly collapsed.
.....The collapse of the Hapsburg monarchy plunged Hungary into horror. There were nationalist revolts everywhere; then a communist coup and a brutal communist dictatorship under Bela Kun; then Rumanian invasion and occupation of Budapest. The Serbs seized what they could, including Prekmurje.
.....Salvation, up to a point, came from Miklós Horthy de Nagybánya, a Hungarian admiral who seized power. Horthy could not restore the Hapsburgs - the allied powers would not accept that - but he reigned from the royal palace in Buda as His Serene Highness the Regent of the Kingdom of Hungary. Hungary was, according to the standard joke, a kingdom without a king, ruled by an admiral without a fleet, in a country without a coastline.
.....The first thing the Regent had to do was accept the horrific terms of the Treaty of Trianon, signed in June 1920. But the Hungarians did not accept Trianon; Horthy's régime was committed to undoing it; all Hungarian flags were hung at half-mast from 1920 onward.
.....And why not? Imagine if such dismemberment had been visited on America or England!

We can now put Trianon into context. The immense territorial losses seemed to defy all of Hungarian history: the Honfoglalás of 896; the entry of Hungary into Christian Europe in 1000; the equal partnership with the Empire of 1867. The disaster of 1920 seemed a repeat of the disaster of 1526, and just as Mohács was reversed and the Lands of St Stephen redeemed, so, surely, Trianon would be reversed.

28 May
And it was!
.....Just as the Turks largely overthrew the Treaty of Sčvres, so the Hungarians largely overthrew the Treaty of Trianon, as the Germans largely overthrew the Treaty of Versialles. But the Hungarian and German reversal took twenty years, and didn't last long.
.....Refresh your memory about Hungarian history; sing along to this animated map; and study the terms of the Treaty of Trianon itself. (The text is here. Note Articles LXXIV and LXXV.)
.....The principle of the settlement of 1919-1923 was Woodrow Wilson's idea of self-determination. But it was scarcely applied to the Hungarians. The famous Red Map by Paul Teleki was what the Hungarians took to Paris; and of course we know the results. .....An interesting episode in 1927. Lord Rothermere, the former Harold Sidney Harmsworth, a swine and a cad, was the most influential newspaper proprietor in England. He published an article in his Daily Mail, ‘Hungary’s Place in the Sun’, with a detailed plan to restore large pieces of the territory lost at the end of the First World War.

This was greeted with ecstatic gratitude in Hungary. Many in England were caught off-guard by Rothermere's impassioned endorsement of the Hungarian cause; it was rumoured that the press baron had been convinced to support it by the charms of a Hungarian seductress (she turned out to be Austrian). Rothermere's son Esmond was received with royal pomp during a visit to Budapest, and some political actors in Hungary later went so far as to inquire about Rothermere's interest in being placed on the Hungarian throne. Rothermere later insisted he did not invite these overtures, and that he quietly deflected them. His private correspondence indicates otherwise. He did purchase estates in Hungary in case Britain should fall to a Soviet invasion. There is a memorial to Rothermere in Budapest.

Funny old world.

30 May
Revision for exam on Friday.

1 June
Unbelievably difficult


with unspeakably harrowing punishments for those who Fail. (Exam here.)

4 June
Today is A nemzeti összetartozás napja, Day of National Unity, in Hungary: the anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Trianon. Since 2010 the Day is the official occasion for mourning over the 72% of Hungary's territory lost on 4 June 1920.
.....With the European triumph of Hitler, from 1938 onwards, the Versailles Treaty unravelled. Horthy, although he loathed Hitler, aligned Hungary with Germany, and received back most of the lost territories from the Czechoslovaks, Rumanians and Jugoslavs. Here he triumphantly takes back Upper Hungary, the southern part of Slovakia. For a few years the Kingdom of Hungary was large again.
.....Hitler invaded Hungary in 1944 and overthrew Horthy. Then with the destruction of the Nazi empire Hungary fell to the Soviets; it was cut back to its Trianon frontiers, and the long communist night began.
.....Since 1989 not all Hungarians have reconciled themselves to Trianon. Many are still very, very, very angry about it; on the 90 anniversary of Trianon in 2010 they mounted this protest. Some Hungarians still fantasise about getting everything back. They include the present Prime Minister Viktor Orbán: almost all of Orbán’s important messages are based on the notion of “national unification,” which has both symbolic and literal importance. He expressly criticizes the Trianon Peace Treaty that concluded World War I .... The idea of national unification furthermore maintains that Hungarians living outside of Hungary are not minorities, but full members of the Hungarian nation with corresponding rights and privileges. As such, these Hungarians are now granted Hungarian citizenship upon request, regardless of where they live, and thus they are also automatically granted voting rights (Andras Bozoki, The Crisis of Democracy in Hungary, 3 February 2012).

6 June

The Treaty of

1. One of the miracles of modern history was the resurrection of Turkey.
.....No state could be as crushed as Turkey was by the Treaty of Sčvres in August 1920; yet the dead people bounced back to life, defeated its enemies, and, less than three years later, made the victorious Powers, now thoroughly defeated, bow to them at the Treaty of Lausanne.
.....Stranger still, this reversal of fortune comes down to one man, Mustapha Kemal, later known as Ataturk, or Father of the Turks. He is still venerated in his country, and we can see why.
.....Meanwhile, the losers at Lausanne – the Greeks, Armenians and Kurds – remain angry and unstable to this day.
.....2. First, remind yourselves who the Turks are: a vary farflung people or family of peoples, spread across Asia, with closely related languages (which are official languages right across the continent. Sometimes these Turkic people dream of unity).
.....3. One particular tribe of Turks, the Ottomans, established in the fourteenth century an empire which grew and grew until 1683, after which it gradually declined, although even in 1914 it remained huge and desireable.
.....4. In December 1914 the Ottoman Empire very foolishly entered the First World War on the side of Germany – which meant going to war with Russia, her traditional enemy, but also with the British Empire, her traditional protector.
.....The British and French resolved to destroy the imperium of the Turks, and drew up secret agreements dividing up the Empire between themselves, the Italians, the Arabs, the Kurds, the Armenians and the Greeks. Even the Americans were supposed to get involved – undertaking the Mandate for a huge new Armenian state.
.....When Turkey surrendered in October 1918, she was therefore hopelessly ruined.
.....Or was she?

8 June
I am in Budapest today (marching about in a sandwich board proclaiming TRIANONI BÉKE VOLT KLASSZ DOLOG, THE TREATY OF TRIANON WAS A GROOVY THING).
.....You, meanwhile, are continuing to study the Treaty of Lausanne.
.....Review Wednesday's lesson, and then watch this 50 minutes British documentary on Turkey’s experience of the Great War: I, II, III, IV, V.
.....You will be tested on this documentary on 11th June, so do pay careful attention, taking notes as necessary, and watching out for the emergence of Mustapha Kemal.

11 June
1. First, a scary class test on the Ottoman Empire in World War One.
.....2. A 1950s American documentary on Kemal Ataturk
.....3. What do these images tell us about the Turkish War of Independence? Here we have maps of the large Greek and Armenian states established by the Treaty of Sčvres. Here we seen the nemesis of Greek hopes: Smyrna, the capital of Greek Asia, burns, and Ataturk enters it in triumph. The human cost: population exchange, so-called.
.....4. Compare the text of the Treaty of Sčvres with the text of the Treaty of Lausanne. List five important differences.


of the Treaties of 1919-1923 – until next year, when they form your Depth Study for IGCSE.
......For the last week and a bit of term, we are luxuriating in history on a larger scale:

The world ended in the fifth century. The urban civilisation of Western Europe, almost two thousand years old, was obliterated by hairy barbarians from the north. It was a disaster of inconceivable proportions. It may happen again. Keep your eyes on the Finns. Me, I’ve never trusted them.
......Here is an animated map of the Fall: it is scary.
......Shakespeare wrote his most appalling play about the fall of the Empire, Titus Andronicus. Julie Taymor’s 1999 film of it, Titus, imagines the Roman Empire surviving into modern times, and then collapsing in Mussolini-ish decadence and invasion, amidst astonishing fascist kitsch (trailer; I, II - electing an emperor, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, IX - the Senate, X, XI).
......But today our main work is to study the B.B.C. documentary Barbarians.

First, consider the map. There had never in history been anything quite so magnificent. Here is the Delhi Durbar of 1911: George V is proclaimed Emperor of India. The last great hurrah of the Raj.
2. Glance at the first few minutes of this leftist documentary decline of the Indian Empire
3. A drama, The Far Pavilions (1984)
4. Admire the antique comedy Carry on up the Khyber
5. Finally, a long documentary, The story of India

The Black Death
And it happened this week in Oregon!

20 June
Last class of the year.

Over the summer, should you suffer Historian Withdrawal Syndrome:
Britain A.D.,
Engineering an Empire: Rome,
The Dark Ages,
or these.


Here are the Germans signing the Treaty of Versailles.
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