Travel tales – Culture shock – Inspiration

Little about history of Germany

Germany’s history is a long and saturated, marked by numerous politically and religiously motivated events and has a lot of angles and key points.

The first people who inhabited the region were Celts. Gradually they were displaced by Germanic tribes moving down from the north, but their exact origins are unknown.

More than 2000 years ago, the northern and western regions of Europe were occupied by various early Germanic tribes, but in the times of Julius Caesar, the Romans were never successful in conquering the region of modern Germany.

By the 5th century, the Franks on the western side of the Rhine had developed an empire that covered present-day France, Germany, the Netherlands, and northern Italy. Later this empire would become a lasting source of a conflict between France and Germany.

At that time also Hungarians constantly attacked the borders, and tribal chieftains were forced to fight off the riders. Eventually, the German kingdom was split into five regions: Franconia, Saxony, Lorraine, Swabia, and Bavaria.

The next important period in German history is the reign of Frederick I, known as Barbarossa. He ruled Germany, encouraging learning, trade, the colonizing of Eastern Germany, and the founding of towns. But his son Conrad IV wasn’t such a good king and brought more chaos than welfare to the German nation. 

Eventually, the nobles chose Rudolph I of Hapsburg as both king and emperor. He restored royal power in Germany and made Austria a domain of the Hapsburg family. Hapsburg dynasty was one of the most successful royal houses not only in the history of Germany but all over the world.

Later, a Polish duchy Prussia was joined to the German state of Brandenburg to the country.  In 1861, the throne was appointed Otto von Bismarck, who modernized and made a mighty and all-powerful Prussian army. 

After that, during the Weimar Republic, the period after World War I, the people of Germany became increasingly angry and resentful of the peace terms of the Versailles Treaty. But hard times were still ahead. 

When Adolf Hitler ruled the country, he built a one-party state, a dictatorship in which opponents of his regime were imprisoned in concentration camps and laws were passed limiting the rights of Jews and other minorities. A very powerful force at the time, Germany successfully conquered much of Europe and parts of Africa during the war. Ultimately, with no strategy for moving forward, the German unconditionally surrendered in 1945.

After, Germany became a key focal point in this era known as the Cold War. Only in the 1990s, Germany was reunited. Many economic and social problems arose, particularly in the Eastern states.

Today reunited Germany is the EU’s strongest economy, great culture, and population, which is respected all over the world.