June 4 in German History
June 4, 1697
Birth of Jocob Israel Emden in Altona,
Germany. A Talmudic scholar whose disagreements with Rabbi
Jonathan Eybesch split European Jewry.
June 4, 1875
Death of Eduard Mörike in Stuttgart,
Germany. Mörike was one of the greatest German lyric poets.
He also wrote novels and novellas. His best known novella is Mozart
auf der Reise nach Prag.
June 4, 1877
Birth of Heinrich Otto Wieland (1877-1957) in
Pforzheim, Germany. He was a chemist who won the Nobel Prize
in 1927 for research on bile acids.
June 4, 1889
Birth of the seismologist Beno Gutenberg (1889-1960) in
Darmstadt, Germany. He was a colleague and mentor of Charles Francis Richter at the California Institute of Technology and Richter's collaborator in developing the Richter magnitude scale for measuring an earthquake's magnitude.
June 4, 1916
The Austrian spring offensive against Italy
in WWI brings assistance from Russia in the form of an attack
on Austria by the army of Russian general, Brusilov. The
battles continued through September. Russian losses of
1,000,000 soldiers flame the resentments which will led to
the revolution of 1917. Equal losses on the Austrian side
will have direct effects on the collapse of the Habsburg
June 4, 1920
Hungary signs a peace treaty separate from
those signed by Austria and Germany. The Austria-Hungarian
Empire had disintegrated with the end of the war. The Treaty
of Trianon reduced Hungary's size to about 1/3. The Hungarian
army was limited to 35,000 troops.
June 4, 1940
The German army enters Paris in World War
June 4, 1941
Death of Wilhelm II in Doorn, Netherlands
(born in Potsdam, Germany). Wilhelm was the King of Prussia
and the Emperor of Germany from 1888 to the end of World War
I. He was the grandson of queen Victoria of England. In 1890
he removed 75 year old Otto von Bismarck from the office of
chancellor. Among many factors which led to declining
relations with Great Britain was the build up of the German
navy under his secretary of the navy, Alfred von Tirpitz.
Wilhelm's ultimate undoing was precipitated by World War I.
He supported Austria-Hungary in the initial conflicts which
led to the war. In 1918, the war lost, he was forced to
abdicate and seek asylum in the Netherlands.
June 4, 1945
Death of Georg Kaiser in Ascona,
Switzerland (born in Magdeburg, Germany). Kaiser was a
dramatist who began his artistic career in the period of
Expressionism. Noted plays by him are Die Bürger von
Calais (1914), Von Morgens bis Mitternachts (1916),
Gas and Oktobertag (1928). He was banned by the
Nazis because of his pacifism. At that time he fled to
Switzerland and continued writing. He wrote over 60 plays.
June 4, 1970
Death of Hjalmar Schlacht in Munich,
Germany. A banker, Schlacht, was a key figure in German
financial matters from the beginning of the century through
World War I and the Weimar Republic into the National
Socialist period. Schlacht had been the director of the
Dresdner Bank from 1908. In 1916 he was named the director of
the German National Bank. In 1923 he was currency
commissioner in the finance ministry. In that position he
headed a rigorous program to stop the inflation and stabilize
the mark. Also in 1923 he was appointed head of the
Reichsbank. From 1934 to 1937 he was the minister of
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