Outbreak of the war
End of the war

“Soldiers’ humour”, field postcard from Ottokar Hanzel, 20.08.1914

Shortly after the start of the war Ottokar Hanzel sent his wife the latest humorous sayings amongst soldiers, which he entitled “Soldiers’ humour”. As examples he mentioned: "Nickerl duck' di, d'schware druckt di", "Jeder Schuß, ein Russ, jeder Stoß ein Franzos" (Every shot a Russian, every push a Frenchman), "Serbien muss sterbien" (Serbia must die), "Hier werden Kriegserklärungen in beliebiger Zahl angenommen" (Declarations of war accepted in whatever number)

Verwendet bei

  • Chapter

    ‘War fever’ versus the longing for peace

    From the perspective of the present, the images of demonstrations of public ‘enthusiasm’ from August 1914 are puzzling and rather difficult to account for. After the wars and genocide of the twentieth century it is almost impossible to understand how the outbreak of conflict between nations could be greeted with such fervour. However, there is a plethora of photographic evidence showing huge crowds of people in Vienna, Berlin or Paris celebrating with ‘exultation’ at the news.