Creating the Weimar Republic | tutor2u History
Study notes

Creating the Weimar Republic

  • Levels: GCSE
  • Exam boards: AQA, Edexcel, OCR

Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated on November 9th 1918 after it became clear that he could no longer command any authority in Germany. Politicians in Germany realised that, in order to keep order and prevent revolution, a new government had to be formed quickly.

As the largest party in the Reichstag, the Social Democratic Party (SPD) formed a government. Friedrich Ebert became leader of Germany and the following day agreed with the Army to work together to keep communists from taking power. To create change quickly, Ebert suspended the Reichstag and created a Council of People’s Representatives. This Council would govern until the new government was up and running and was filled with “moderate” politicians who did not hold extreme political ideas such as the communists.

An early act of the new government was to sign the Armistice with the Allied Powers to end the fighting of the First World War. Whilst for Germany this was the right thing to do, it quickly became clear that a peace treaty would prove problematic for Germany and encourage bad feeling to spread among the German people.

The Council and Ebert could not set up the new government on their own so required help. Ebert ensured the key parts of the German state were kept together. Civil servants were encouraged to stay in post, which meant that public services continued and, crucially, taxes were still collected. Ebert won the support of the Army, who would in return for no reforms, ensured that the government was protected, and that revolutions and rebellions were suppressed. Together with reassurances to industry this brought some control and stability to Germany after the abdication of the Kaiser, albeit that Ebert had only achieved a fragile control

RECOMMENDED REVISION GUIDE FOR EDEXCEL GCSE HISTORY: WEIMAR & NAZI GERMANY (1918-39)

Subscribe to email updates from tutor2u History

Join 1000s of fellow History teachers and students all getting the tutor2u History team's latest resources and support delivered fresh in their inbox every morning.

You can also follow @tutor2uHistory on Twitter or subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Teaching Vacancies

Recruitment

Advertise your vacancies with tutor2u

Much cheaper & more effective than TES or the Guardian. Reach the audience you really want to apply for your teaching vacancy by posting directly to our website and related social media audiences.

Find our more ›

Advertise your teaching jobs with tutor2u

A New Home for tutor2u Resources

We've just flicked the switch on moving all our digital resources to instant digital download - via our new subject stores.

For every subject you can now access each digital resource as soon as it is ordered. This will always be the latest edition of each resource too (and we'll update you automatically if there is an upgraded version to use).

Simply add the required resources to your cart, checkout using the usual options and your resources will be available to access immediately via your mytutor2u account.