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Title: The German Emperor as Shown in his Public Utterances
Author: Gauss, Christian
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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  [Illustration: _From a photograph by Brown and Dawson_
    From a photograph taken since the beginning of the war of 1914]






  Published February, 1915


Unlike his grandfather, who shielded himself behind his Chancellor,
the present Emperor has always insisted upon making himself the
storm-centre of the debates in his Reichstag and among his people.
He has played with many, if not all, of his cards upon the table. In
accordance with this policy he has gone through his country from end
to end and into foreign lands, everywhere announcing his policies and
his views on every possible subject of interest or controversy. Up to
1905 he had made upward of five hundred and seventy speeches, and since
that time has made almost as many more. It was manifestly impossible
to give all of these speeches, and it was also thought unfair to give
merely extracts which might fail to represent the spirit of the entire
pronouncement. They are all printed, therefore, in the completest
form available. Particular speeches have often been reported to the
press in widely differing versions. In all cases only those speeches
are here presented which have received official or semiofficial
sanction. The text followed for pronouncements made before 1913,
with the one exception of the _Daily Telegraph_ interview, October
29, 1908, has always been that of the recognized and standard edition
in four volumes, edited by J. Penzler and published in the Reclam
_Universal-Bibliothek_. Now and then only portions of certain addresses
appear to have been reported, and on a few occasions parts of speeches
are given directly and other parts are merely summarized. In all such
cases the speech is translated from the form sanctioned in the official
version. In no case has any change been made. Where significant
differences exist in the versions of addresses as given officially and
unofficially, the official version is in every instance printed first.
It has been the aim to present faithfully the language and spirit of
the speaker, and his phraseology and emphasis have been reproduced as
closely as was at all consistent with fair English usage. The speeches
have been chosen to represent in due proportion his many interests,
and range therefore from agriculture and art to Biblical criticism,
national and international politics.

The Emperor has, of course, not given titles to his speeches, and
the headings have been assigned by the compiler. It has been his
aim to explain the circumstances under which each address was
delivered and to make plain the references to events embodied therein.
Questions which have had a continuous interest, or which have had
some lasting effect on Germany's policy, such as the attitude toward
Alsace-Lorraine, the Social Democratic party, the retirement of
Bismarck, the development of the navy, the Morocco question, have
been treated at greater length on the first fitting occasion. For
the introductions, therefore, the compiler assumes responsibility.
In preparing them he has had recourse to many incidental sources
of information, and in many cases the true inwardness of certain
situations is still as much a matter of controversy as the causes
of the present war. For his facts generally, he has followed where
possible, besides such incidental and contemporary sources, Bruno
Gebhardt's "Handbuch der Deutschen Geschichte" (1913), the "Cambridge
Modern History--The Latest Age," volume XII (1910), and the volumes of
the "Statesman's Yearbook." In addition, for information concerning
the internal development of Germany he has consulted and drawn
upon the literature of this subject which has appeared in the last
decade, but is more particularly indebted to Doctor Paul Liman's
"Der Kaiser," Dawson's "The Evolution of Modern Germany," Barker's
"Modern Germany," Price Collier's "Germany and the Germans," Forbes's
"William of Germany," Gibbons's "The New Map of Europe," and the

As the Emperor has spoken upon almost every phase of German political
life, with the editorial introductions which aim to set forth briefly
the occasion and causes of each address, it is hoped that altogether
the volume will offer a fairly accurate picture of the trend of German
affairs for the last twenty-five years.

For help in the preparation of this volume, the writer is much indebted
to his wife, whose assistance has amounted to collaboration.

    _December 20, 1914_.



    PREFACE                                                  v


    THE HOHENZOLLERN TRADITION                               1


    PRELIMINARIES                                           25
      June 15, 1888--October 30, 1889.

    The First Official Act of the Emperor                   25
      Schloss Friedrichskron, June 15, 1888.

    To My People                                            28
      Potsdam, June 18, 1888.

    First Declaration of Policy                             31
      Berlin, June 25, 1888.

    Opening of the Reichstag                                39
      November 22, 1888.

    The Emperor and the Striking Miners                     45
      May 14, 1889.

    Visit of the King of Italy                              47
      Berlin, May 22, 1889.

    The English Fleet and the German Army                   48
      Sandown Bay, August 5, 1889.

    The English Army                                        49
      Aldershot, August 7, 1889.

    The Czar at Berlin                                      50
      Berlin, October 11, 1889.

    On Board an English Flag-Ship                           51
      The Piræus, October 30, 1889.


    AFTER BISMARCK                                          53
    May 6, 1890--June 21, 1895.

    Opening of the Reichstag                                53
      Berlin, May 6, 1890.

    Review of the Ninth Army Corps                          60
      Flensburg, September 4, 1890.

    Accidents with Agricultural Machinery                   62
      Berlin, November 11, 1890.

    Alsace-Lorraine                                         66
      Berlin, March 14, 1891.

    Swearing in the Recruits                                72
      Potsdam, November 23, 1891.

    The Emperor's First Army Bill                           75
      Berlin, July 4, 1893.

    Arrival in Metz                                         80
      Metz, September 3, 1893.

    Dedication of Flags                                     81
      Berlin, October 18, 1894.

    Navy Recruits                                           84
      Kiel, December 3, 1894.

    Christening of a Cruiser                                86
      Kiel, March 26, 1895.

    Visit to Bismarck                                       87
      Friedrichsruh, March 26, 1895.

    Opening of the Emperor William Canal                    91
      Kiel, June 21, 1895.


    THE BEGINNING OF WORLD POLITICS                         95
    June 16, 1896--March 22, 1905.

    The Beginning of World Politics                         95
      Berlin, June 16, 1896.

    To the Recruits for the Navy                           103
      Wilhelmshaven, February 21, 1896.

    A Toast to the Russian Emperor and Empress             104
      St. Petersburg, August 8, 1897.

    The Army Tradition                                     106
      Coblentz, August 30, 1897.

    Toast to the Italian King and Queen                    109
      Homburg, September 4, 1897.

    Address at a Dedication of Flags                       111
      Berlin, October 18, 1897.

    On Administering the Oath to the Recruits              113
      Berlin, November 18, 1897.

    The Chinese Situation and the Mailed Fist              116
      December 15, 1897.

    Address to the Regiments of the Body-Guard             121
      Potsdam, June 16, 1898.

    On the Death of Prince Bismarck                        123
      Friedrichsruh, August 2, 1898.

    "Our Future Lies Upon the Water"                       126
      Stettin, September 23, 1898.

    The Journey to the Holy Land                           127
      Bethlehem, October 30, 1898.

    Dedication of the Church of Our Redeemer               132
      Jerusalem, October 31, 1898.

    By Divine Right                                        135
      Brandenburg, February 3, 1899.

    The Hague Conference                                   141
      Wiesbaden, May 18, 1899.

    The Housing of Laborers                                143
      Early June, 1899.

    French Heroism at St. Privat                           143
      The Battle-field of St. Privat, August 18, 1899.


    THE GREATER NAVY                                       147

    "Bitterly We Need a Powerful German Fleet"             150
      Hamburg, October 18, 1899.

    On the Threshold of the New Century                    154
      Berlin, January 1, 1900.

    New Boundary Posts                                     157
      Berlin, February 13, 1900.

    Seaports and Cannon                                    159
      Lübeck, June 16, 1900.

    The Ocean Knocks at Our Door                           160
      Kiel, July 3, 1900.

    Open the Way for Culture                               163
      Bremen, July 27, 1900.

    Civis Romanus Sum                                      167
      Imperial Limes Museum, Saalburg, October 11, 1900.

    Cabinet Order to the Prussian Army                     169
      January, 1901.

    Dedication of the Barracks of the Alexander Regiment   171
      March 28, 1901.

    To the Students at Bonn                                174
      April 24, 1901.

    A Place in the Sun                                     180
      Hamburg, June 18, 1901.

    The Great Elector                                      184
      Kiel, June 20, 1901.

    Entrance of Prince Eitel Friedrich into the Army       189
      July 7, 1901.

    True Art                                               191
      Berlin, December 18, 1901.

    Monument to General von Rosenberg                      201
      April 20, 1902.

    The Old Order Changeth                                 203
      Aix, June 19, 1902.

    Alfred Krupp and the Socialists                        209
      November 26, 1902.

    The Working Man Once More                              213
      Breslau, December 5, 1902.

    Scholarship and Religion                               216
      Berlin, February 15, 1903.

    Frederick the Great and His Army                       225
      Döberitz, May 29, 1903.

    The Future of Germany                                  227
      Hamburg, June 20, 1903.

    The Reasons for Japan's Victory                        232
      March 9, 1905.

    The Salt of the Earth                                  233
      Bremen, March 22, 1905.


    ON THE EVE OF MOROCCO                                  240
    March 31, 1905--November 12, 1906.

    The Morocco Question                                   240
      Tangier, March 31, 1905.

    The Great Ally                                         242
      September 8, 1906.

    Optimism and Literature                                247
      Münich, November 12, 1906.

    Twenty-Five Years of Labor Legislation                 253
      November 17, 1896.


    THE CRISIS OF 1907                                     256
    February 5, 1907--October 18, 1911.

    Imperialism versus Social Democracy                    256
      Berlin, February 5, 1907.

    The Necessity of Faith                                 259
      Münster, August 31, 1907.

    English Journalists                                    264
      London, November 16, 1907.

    Alsace-Lorraine                                        265
      Strasburg, August 30, 1908.

    The _Daily Telegraph_ Interview                        267
      October 28, 1908.

    The Emperor and Count Zeppelin                         273
      Manzell, November 10, 1908.

    Regatta at Hamburg                                     274
      Hamburg, June 22, 1909.

    Review of the Fourteenth Army Corps                    278
      Karlsruhe, September 11, 1909.

    Emperor by Divine Right                                279
      Königsberg, August 25, 1910.

    The Hundredth Anniversary of the Founding of the
      University of Berlin                                 285
      Berlin, October 11, 1910.

    The Emperor in Brussels                                290
      October 27, 1910.

    Alcohol and the Schools                                292
      Cassel, August 19, 1911.

    International Competition                              295
      Hamburg, August 27, 1911.

    Imperial Glories                                       299
      Aix, October 18, 1911.


    LAST MONTHS OF PEACE                                   303
    February 7, 1912--June 23, 1914.

    Opening of the Reichstag                               303
      Berlin, February 7, 1912.

    Brandenburg Once Again                                 307
      May 30, 1912.

    Hauling Down the Flag                                  313
      Hamburg, June 18, 1912.

    Accident to a Zeppelin                                 316
      Bonn, October 17, 1913.

    We Germans Fear God, Nothing Else                      318
      Hamburg, June 23, 1914.


    AT THE OUTBREAK OF THE WAR                             323

    Forcing the Sword into His Hand                        323
      Berlin, July 31, 1914.

    An End of Parties                                      324
      Berlin, August 1, 1914.

    Opening of the Reichstag                               324
      Berlin, August 4, 1914.

    To the Army and Navy                                   327
      Berlin, August 6, 1914.

    Proclamation to the German People                      328
      Berlin, August 6, 1914.


  William II, German Emperor                       _Frontispiece_

                                                     FACING PAGE

  The Emperor in the Year of His Coronation, 1888
    (Age 29)                                              26

  "Our Future Lies upon the Water." The Emperor
    on Shipboard in the Autumn of 1898                   126

  The Emperor in 1900                                    168



Ernest Renan, the author of that once heretical "Life of Jesus," was
by temperament unenthusiastic and had further schooled himself to look
upon all human events with high unconcern. The great sceptic had been
born in 1823; he was therefore sixty-five at the time of the accession
of William II, and his declining health, in Horatian phrase, refused
to allow him to enter upon any long hope. In looking forward to his
inevitable end one thing, he said, afflicted him. He regretted only
that he was not to see, in its later and more decisive phases, the
unfolding of the multiform personality of the new German Emperor. To
him it was an intellectual puzzle, more intricate and more interesting
than any he had encountered in the many cycles of the history of the
Hebrews or in the complicated schisms of the church. In the early years
of his reign the youthful Emperor was regarded with much interest and
some concern by his contemporaries generally. He was the chameleon
among the royal figures of Europe. One day he receives the Czar at
Berlin and proclaims peace to the world. A few weeks later he visits
the Sultan at Constantinople, and shortly thereafter he announces to
his loyal Brandenburgers that he will lead them on to greater things.
What did he mean? Now he is a soldier, jesting with his officers; and,
with the rising of another sun, in workman's garb, with the axe upon
his shoulder, he goes forth as woodman or laborer on his own estates.
At home he was regarded as Benjamin Constant regarded Madame de Staël.
He was the "_bel orage_," the beautiful storm which had come upon
Europe in the dull and piping times of peace of the last decades of
the nineteenth century. He cleared the air of Continental politics
in the years of late Victorianism. He was a dilettante of dangerous
activities, as Renan had been of antiquated heresies and harmless,
outworn systems, and to him Fate seemed to have given the future as a
toy. Such, at least, was the view of the famous Portuguese poet Eça de
Queiroz, who cast his horoscope in 1891.

A quarter century of peace had removed much apprehension. After the
dismissal of Bismarck he had shaped his own policy and gone his own
way. To his great advisers he had seemed to say: "_Ôte-toi que je
m'y mette._" Yet his career had ceased to disquiet, and the youthful
exuberance had given way to mature and conscientious labor. With
unshakable confidence in himself and with a determined application he
was making Germany the greatest state in Europe. To those who, unlike
Renan, did not have the misfortune to have been born too soon to be his
later contemporaries, the riddle _seemed_ to be solving itself to the
greater good of humanity. The Emperor's army, so he tells us himself,
is invincible. Never has Germany been defeated so long as she was
united, and God, who has taken such infinite pains with us, will never
leave us "in the lurch." By means of this powerful, unconquerable army,
at whose side he had now set one of the greatest fleets on the seas, he
had, so he told us, laid firm and sure the foundations of peace.

Then suddenly "the abyss is opened, ... the sword is thrust into his
hand," and reluctantly and with a heavy heart he goes forth to do
battle. Like a shuttle he flits from frontier to frontier, now planning
an invasion of England, now supervising the readministration of Belgian
industries, and now directing a battle in Poland. Surely such a
destiny, so immense a power, has been granted to no man. It may be he
is the great predestined victim; it may be that Time is preparing for
him a final and well-earned European triumph.

What shall be the end, and where lies the responsibility? No ethical
or political problem of our time forces itself upon us with greater
insistence. His utterances may help to make the question if not the
answer clear. Looking forward dispassionately twenty-three years ago
that Portuguese student prophesied that this could not last, that there
would be war; and in the light of later events that prophecy about "the
allied armies" has been recently recalled. It was in these words that
he closed his brilliant study of the youthful Emperor and King:

"William II runs the awful danger of being cast down Gemoniæ. He boldly
takes upon himself responsibilities which in all nations are divided
among various bodies of the state--he alone judges, he alone executes,
because to him alone it is (not to his ministers, to his council, or
to his parliament) that God, the God of the Hohenzollerns, imparts
his transcendental inspiration. He must therefore be infallible and
invincible. At the first disaster--whether it be inflicted by his
burghers or by his people in the streets of Berlin, or by allied armies
on the plains of Europe--Germany will at once conclude that his
much-vaunted alliance with God was the trick of a wily despot.

"Then will there not be stones enough from Lorraine to Pomerania to
stone this counterfeit Moses. William II is in very truth casting
against fate those terrible 'iron dice' to which the now-forgotten
Bismarck once alluded. If he win he may have within and without the
frontiers altars such as were raised to Augustus; should he lose,
exile, the traditional exile, in England awaits him--a degraded exile,
the exile with which he so sternly threatens those who deny his

"M. Renan is therefore quite right: there is nothing more attractive
at this period of the century than to witness the final development
of William II. In the course of years (may God make them slow and
lengthy!) this youth, ardent, pleasing, fertile in imagination, of
sincere, perhaps heroic, soul, may be sitting in calm majesty in his
Berlin Schloss presiding over the destinies of Europe--or he may be in
the Hôtel Métropole in London sadly unpacking from his exile's handbag
the battered double crown of Prussia and Germany."

       *       *       *       *       *

This drama of a life is twenty-three years nearer its climax than it
was when Renan bade the world good night. With a certain finality of
pathos a Greek poet whom Renan loved, thinking doubtless of his unhappy
countrymen who had fallen in the long wars between Athens and Sparta,
had said: "They that have died are not sick, nor do they possess
any evil things." If this be true, quite possibly, then, the world
was kinder to this aged Frenchman than he shall ever know. For the
disasters which were to follow the rising star of the Emperor, which he
regarded so curiously, were to be far greater than he had ever dreamed.
It may be, therefore, that it is he and not some of his younger
countrymen who are to be congratulated on the bournes which marked the
time of his coming and his passing.

The question of the responsibility of the Emperor and the limits of his
power is one which perhaps only time can decide. Undeniably Germany
has a written Constitution. But that Constitution is of comparatively
recent date (April 16, 1871). It is not looked upon, as is the American
Constitution, as the source of Germany's political life. It is the
empire and not the Constitution that is holy. Struggles for personal
liberty find little place in the history of Prussia. They have no
Cromwell, no Washington, no Robespierre, and, significantly too, they
have had in times past no Ravaillac and no Guiteau. There, still,
a certain majesty doth hedge about a king. The old idea of fealty,
of _deutsche Treue_, which led the retainers of Teutonic chiefs or
rulers to submit uncomplainingly to every abuse and all oppression and
to follow their lords into misfortune and into exile, though it has
doubtless waned, nevertheless retains some vestiges of its traditional
force even to-day.

When, therefore, in 1878, by a curious coincidence, two attempts were
made upon the life of Emperor William I (one by Hödel, an irresponsible
person of diseased mind and body, who had been dismissed from the
Social Democratic party; and another by Nobiling, who was not a Social
Democrat), Bismarck immediately and easily seized this occasion to
crush Social Democracy and increase the imperial power. He dissolved
the Reichstag, and in one month the law-courts inflicted no less
than five hundred years of imprisonment for _lèse-majesté_. Within
eight months the authorities dissolved two hundred and twenty-two
workingmen's unions, suppressed one hundred and twenty-seven periodical
and two hundred and seventy-eight other publications, and innumerable
_bona-fide_ co-operative societies were compelled by the police to
close their doors without trial and with no possibility of appeal. With
equal despatch numerous Social Democrats were expelled from Germany
on a few days' notice. This traditional attitude toward the Social
Democrat, who from our standpoint is the German radical and liberal,
appears again in the present Emperor when he declares (May 14, 1889)
that every Social Democrat is synonymous with enemy of the country. How
Social Democracy has grown in spite of the Emperor's attempt to check
it will be evident from a consideration of the following figures, in
which the forty political parties are grouped into their four larger

  |                |   1871  |   1881  |   1893  |   1907  |   1912  |
  | Right, or      |         |         |         |         |         |
  |   Conservative |  895,000|1,210,000|1,806,000|2,151,000|1,149,916|
  | Liberal        |1,884,000|1,948,000|2,102,000|3,078,000|3,227,846|
  | Clerical       |  973,000|1,618,000|1,920,000|2,779,000|2,012,990|
  | Social         |         |         |         |         |         |
  |   Democrats    |  124,000|  312,000|1,787,000|3,259,000|4,238,919|

In spite of this representation in the Reichstag, the power of the
German political parties is slight. The power lies far more with the
Emperor and the Bundesrat. According to Article II of the Constitution,
the Emperor represents the empire internationally and can declare
war if defensive (in German eyes the present is a defensive war),
can make peace as well as enter into treaties with other nations,
and appoint and receive ambassadors. When treaties are related
to matters regulated by imperial legislation, and when war is not
merely defensive, the Emperor must have the consent of the Bundesrat,
in which, together with the Reichstag, are vested the legislative
functions of the empire. But _de facto_, and through her power of veto,
Prussia controls the Bundesrat, and as King of Prussia the Emperor
controls Prussia.

That, even so, the Constitution is not the real and final source of
political power, but a convenient political instrument, which in the
mind of so great an authority as Bismarck might still easily be changed
without consulting the people, we may gather from the fact that the
Great Chancellor frequently debated the question of limiting the
suffrage. "The blind Hödhur[1] [the German elector] does not know how
to manipulate in his coarse hands the Nuremberg toy [the Reichstag]
which I gave him, and through his voting he is ruining the Fatherland."
According to Hohenlohe, Bismarck considered setting aside the Reichstag
and returning to the old Bundestag.

[1] In Norse mythology Hödhur was the powerful blind god who slew

The late Price Collier, an enthusiastic admirer of Germany, is
therefore quite justified in saying: "This Reichstag is really only
nominally a portion of the governing body. It has the right to
refuse a bill presented by the government, but if it does so it may
be summarily dismissed, as has happened several times, and another
election usually provides a more amenable body." And if the following
judgment seems somewhat downright, it is none the less substantially

"The fact that the members of the Reichstag are not in the saddle but
are used unwillingly and often contemptuously as a necessary and often
stubborn and unruly pack-animal by the Kaiser-appointed ministers, the
fact that they are pricked forward or induced to move by a tempting
feed held just beyond the nose has something to do, no doubt, with the
lack of unanimity which exists. The diverse elements debate with one
another and waste their energy in rebukes and recriminations which
lead nowhere and result in nothing. I have listened to many debates in
the Reichstag where the one aim of the speeches seemed to be merely
to unburden the soul of the speaker. He had no plan, no proposal,
no solution, merely a confession to make. After forty-odd years the
Germans, in many ways the most cultivated nation in the world, are
still without real representative government."

History, to be sure, may be read in many ways, but from one standpoint
it is perfectly possible to regard the framing of the present
Constitution and the building up of the present German Empire not as
the last stage in the attempt to give freedom and self-government to
the German people, but to guarantee and maintain the supremacy of
Prussia. Whether or not this is a possible view, it is, in any case,
one occasionally to be found implied in the speeches of the Emperor,
and it came to open expression in the statement of William I that
the empire was merely a "greater Prussia." So, too, when a few years
ago Alsace-Lorraine proved itself recalcitrant to the wishes of its
imperial master, he threatened that he would make of it a "Prussian

[2] On this occasion a Socialist orator declared in the Reichstag: "We
    salute the imperial words as the confession, full of weight and
    coming from a competent source, that annexation to Prussia is the
    heaviest punishment that one can threaten to impose upon a people
    for its resistance against Germany. It is a punishment like hard
    labor in the penitentiary, with loss of civil rights."

It need, therefore, not appear as startling as would otherwise be the
case if on occasions which to us would seem peculiarly appropriate
(as, for instance, the famous Königsberg speech, August 25, 1910) the
Emperor makes no mention whatever of the Constitution. The sources
of his power and the sanction for his authority he finds not in this
instrument but in the history of his ancestors.

To understand the personality and the speeches of the Emperor it is,
therefore, necessary to recall that he is also King of Prussia and
that the foundation of his ancestors' rule was laid in the province of
Brandenburg, of which they became some centuries ago the margraves and
electors. In 1300 Prussia was a wilderness inhabited by savages who
were ruthlessly massacred by the Teutonic knights. It was looked upon
as lying outside the German Empire. Through the knights the country
was converted to Christianity, and the reduced native population was
largely augmented by immigration from other German states.

Although the Emperor is not slow to accept traditions with regard to
his house, he never mentions the old shoot in the genealogical tree of
an elector which carries us back to one of the fugitives who fled from
Troy with Æneas. For our purposes, it was not until 1273 that a count
of Hohenzollern first came into prominence, when, after a fortunate
marriage, he became burgrave of Nuremberg and prince of the Holy Roman
Empire. With the exception of Frederick William II, they have been
a thrifty race. A little more than a century later there appears in
history that one of the Emperor's ancestors to whom he frequently
refers as the founder of his house and that one who began to acquire
for it divine right.

Frederick VI of Hohenzollern had already come into prominence through
the fact that he had cast in his lot with King Sigismund of Hungary.
The services which he rendered the King, however valuable, were not
altogether disinterested, and it is said that he largely increased his
fortune thereby. He seems not to have been content with mere promises,
and it is a matter of record that Sigismund pledged to him certain
districts in Hungary as security for 40,000 gulden. As Frederick was to
lay the foundation for the greatness of the house of Hohenzollern and
as Emperor William is fond of repeating that he came to Brandenburg in
obedience to a summons from on high, this chapter in the history of the
Emperor's house is particularly significant and interesting.

For some time previously Brandenburg had been unfortunate in its rulers
and had frequently changed hands. In 1373 it had been sold for 500,000
gulden to Emperor Charles IV, who turned it over to his son Wenceslaus.
In 1378 it passed to Wenceslaus' half brother, the Sigismund mentioned
above. Sigismund was in financial difficulty. A few years later,
therefore, he pledged the mark of Brandenburg to his cousins Jobst and
Procop of Moravia as security for a loan of 500,000 gulden. Sigismund
defaulted payment in 1393, so that the margraviate passed to them. In
1410 Sigismund eagerly desired to be elected Emperor of Germany. He
entrusted the management of what might quite properly be called his
"campaign" to Frederick of Hohenzollern. Jobst of Moravia, who, as
we have seen, now had claims to Brandenburg was a rival candidate.
Sigismund, without deigning to make repayment, coolly declared that
the transaction with Jobst concerning Brandenburg was null and void
and instructed Frederick to cast the vote for the mark. To this vote
Frederick clearly (if anything in these complicated proceedings is
clear) had no right. He none the less managed the campaign and in a
"snap" election cast the vote of Brandenburg with assurance. This at
least was the view of other electors, and this high-handed performance
did not meet with their approval. They called a rival council and
elected Jobst to the imperial dignity. For both Sigismund and Frederick
it was "fortunate" (we take the word from the Prussian historian
Eberty) that Jobst died shortly after. It is perhaps unfortunate that
it should have been suspected ever since that he died of poison.

Sigismund himself seems to have been somewhat doubtful about the
validity of that election which Frederick had compassed and after the
death of Jobst had himself re-elected and was finally acknowledged as
Emperor. If the times were bad, Sigismund and Jobst were no better
than their times. It was this same Sigismund who, after having granted
a safe conduct to the great reformer John Huss, allowed him to be
judicially murdered, a proceeding which made even Charles V blush for
the empire.

For the purpose of electing Sigismund, Frederick had incurred
considerable expense, amounting to some hundred thousand gulden. It
is perhaps again fortunate for all concerned and for the honor of
the venal empire that no bill of particulars specifying the uses of
this fund is now available, if any was ever rendered. That Frederick,
however, had not served Sigismund "_pour l'amour de Dieu_" is plain
from the fact that he again took security for his advances. This time
he was given the unhappy mark of Brandenburg which, as we have seen,
had belonged to Jobst by virtue of a mortgage which Sigismund had never
taken the trouble to discharge.

If, then, the law of God is at all similar to the law recognized by
men, Sigismund had no right to give and the ancestor of William II no
legal right to accept that province. The right by which Frederick came
into possession of this first state of the later German Empire was,
consequently, a right quite different from rights generally recognized.
This, therefore, must be that "divine right" which William II is so
fond of proclaiming. At its best, the document of June 7, 1411, which
gave the Hohenzollerns their first claim to their first province was
in reality a mortgage to a piece of property of doubtful title, and
if the rather florid style of that document seems to bring in the
business transaction as something quite incidental, it is altogether
similar to the forms in which other mortgages were couched in those
days. That this was so is further evidenced by the fact that the
Brandenburg cities looked upon Frederick as the holder of a mortgage
and did homage to him "_zu seinem Gelde_"--"for his money"; that is,
they recognized that they were bound to him only until he should be
paid. The nobles did not do homage to him at all. After "the rain of
margraves" of the previous decades, it is not strange that they should
have been slow to recognize their latest overlord. Emperor William II
is, therefore, quite right when he describes the mark of May, 1412, as
devastated, unruly, and altogether unpromising. It could hardly have
been otherwise. Before Frederick was invested with Brandenburg (and he
was formally invested only after a further payment of 400,000 gulden),
in 1417, his princely possessions included merely partial claims to
smaller districts like Ansbach and Bayreuth, which he shared with his
brother John. In spite of Frederick of Hohenzollern's devotion to the
cause of religion, the Shakespearean motto, "Thrift, thrift, Horatio,"
may be taken to explain satisfactorily his conduct in this regard. That
the nobles would be unruly he must have expected. His own activities
and his acceptance of the mark had helped to make them so. Frederick's
later service consisted in dispelling a confusion which he had helped
to create.

In these larger transactions the first great Hohenzollern does not seem
to have been given to listening to the still small voice. Incidentally,
he was later to turn against Sigismund. The assumption, therefore,
that he left his southern home for the mark out of heed for a divine
call, as Emperor William in his speech of February 3, 1899, tells us
that he did, is historically, like Laplace's God, a useless hypothesis.
Self-interest, for which he seems to have had a fairly keen sense,
would have impelled him to do no less. Yet it is upon the _faits et
gestes_ of Frederick of Hohenzollern that Emperor William II bases his
claims to rule Germany by divine right.

As we have seen, the mortgage was not discharged, and Frederick had
been formally invested with the margraviate and electorship in 1417.
He lifted the mark out of the deplorable condition in which he found
it, compelled obedience, and during the period of his rule--he died
in 1440--its lot was much improved and the power of the house of
Hohenzollern much strengthened. History must give him credit for his
ability and his difficult achievement if not for his motives.

In the process of establishing himself, his rule, like that of his
successors was the rule of the sword and his policy the _Machtpolitik_,
or policy of force. In spite of her comparative poverty, therefore,
Prussia in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries maintained an army
larger than that of Austria or France. The connection between the ruler
and the army in a state which was founded and maintained by force of
arms was, therefore, and remains in modern Prussia so close that the
Emperor is from the standpoint of tradition justified in repeating
that "the only pillar on which the empire rests is the army." It was
literally _ein Volk in Waffen_, a people in arms. The first really
outstanding ruler of the province was the Great Elector (1620-88), who
has always been cited by William II as his model and of whom he speaks
with a respect that amounts to veneration.

He was born in Berlin and, after passing part of his youth in the
Netherlands, became ruler of Brandenburg and Prussia in 1640, before
the close of the Thirty Years' War. He restored the prestige of the
army and centralized the government and, we are informed by recognized
authorities, by a clever but unscrupulous use of his intermediate
position between Sweden and Poland, procured his recognition as an
independent Duke of Prussia by both powers and eventually succeeded in
crushing the stubborn and protracted opposition which was offered to
his authority by the estates of the duchy. His success in organizing
the army was proved by his great victory over the Swedes at Fehrbellin,

From childhood the Emperor has worshipped the Great Elector as his
favorite hero. In their policies there is a striking similarity, for
the elector was the first to recognize the importance of sea power and
is praised by William II for having founded the Prussian navy and for
having encouraged commerce. He built the first great German canal,
from the Oder to the Spree (another lead which the present Emperor
was to follow), and he inaugurated the colonial policy by founding
a settlement on the west African coast. This, likewise, was to be
revived by the present Emperor, for it was allowed to lapse even under
Frederick the Great, who considered a "village on the frontier" a much
greater asset than a state oversea. The aim of the Great Elector was
to make himself an absolute ruler, as he regarded this best for the
internal and external welfare of the state. But he raised Brandenburg
and Prussia to a high place and laid the basis of their later power.

Under these lords and their followers the progress of Prussia was
amazingly rapid. In 1650, when London and Paris were cities of a
little more or less than half a million inhabitants and Amsterdam
counted 300,000, Berlin was a village of 10,000. The population of
Prussia itself, which, to be sure, had been more than doubled in size,
increased from 1,500,000 in 1688 to 19,000,000 in 1865. It was in the
time of Frederick the Great, however, that her power as a state was
first firmly established. His military genius (he is usually said
to have originated "the oblique order" of battle) and his policy of
dissimulation here stood him in good stead. He sowed discord among
his neighbors and awaited the favorable opportunity to attack even on
very slight pretexts and in the case of Silesia without the formality
of a declaration of war. Like William II, he was a patron of the arts
and sciences and invited noted littérateurs and scientists, especially
Frenchmen, to his court. The scientist Maupertuis and Voltaire were
his protégés, and the exiled Rousseau for a time found refuge in his
domains. He himself wrote in French. It is probably because of his
French sympathies and the fact that he was, in this regard, not a
_kerndeutscher Mann_ that William II rarely speaks of him personally
and mentions usually only his services to his country.

Frederick died in 1786. He had raised Prussia to the position of a
first-rate power and, in Disraeli's phrase, left it "regarded if not
respected." His successor, Frederick William II, is remembered mostly
because of the scandalous character of his life, and he showed none
of the characteristics of the energetic Hohenzollerns. A contemporary
says of him: "He bears the greatest resemblance to an Asiatic prince,
who, living within his harem with his slaves of both sexes, leaves
the business of the state to his viziers. The wall, twelve feet in
height, by which the new garden at Potsdam is enclosed, reminds one of
the enclosure of a seraglio." He was succeeded by his son, Frederick
William III, in 1797. This conscientious but ill-starred ruler was to
be rendered famous through his misfortunes in the time of Napoleon and
has been overshadowed somewhat in history by his beautiful, devoted,
and heroic wife Louise. They stand closer to modern history than is
generally realized. The present Emperor often mentions them for their
heroism and the brave part they played in the War of Liberation and
in freeing their country from the incubus of the Napoleonic Empire.
They were the parents of Emperor William I, the illustrious grandfather
of the present sovereign. If, then, Emperor William II frequently
takes occasion to recall the memory of 1813 it should be remembered
that in his own family these events were very near to him, since his
grandfather had spent his childhood in those years of humiliation and
had served in the allied armies in the time of Napoleon. The man who
was to become Emperor William I had been born as the second son of
Frederick William III in 1797. He was to be preceded on the throne by
his elder brother, Frederick William IV, who, like the present Emperor
and like Frederick the Great, was an accomplished lover of the arts,
but who lacked the strength to guide his country with a sure hand
through the troubled years of the forties. He became afflicted in his
last years with hopeless mental disease, and his brother, after having
served as regent, became King of Prussia as William I in 1861.

The idea of uniting Germany into a single empire had already been
seriously agitated in the time of Frederick William IV, but it
was under his brother, largely through the tireless activity and
wonderfully successful diplomacy of Bismarck, that this great aim was
to be achieved in the lifetime of the present Emperor. It was in
the chapel at Königsberg that William I arranged for and held his
coronation. He cannot be said to have been crowned; for although his
brother had granted Prussia a constitution William himself raised the
crown from the altar, set it on his own head, and announced in a loud
voice: "I receive this crown from God's hand and from none other."

It was such a legacy that the present Emperor inherited when, after
the few months' reign of his father, he succeeded to the imperial
office; and it is this legacy and this tradition which, in fairness
to the Emperor, we must remember in reading such seemingly strange
pronouncements as his own address at Königsberg in 1910.

The later events in German history and the subsequent policies of the
empire are touched upon in such detail that further preamble is hardly
necessary. That the Emperor has everywhere energetically taken the lead
is undoubted. That he should be held responsible in general for German
diplomacy is implied in his position. That he has urged and directed
the movement in nearly every field of endeavor is plain from the varied
character of his addresses. No one can doubt after reading him that
he desired peace, in the sense that he preferred peace to war. The
question that will undoubtedly interest the reader most is the problem
of the consistency of his various policies; whether, for instance, the
exaggerated worship of the army, the devout desire for peace, and the
insistent imperialism of his later years can be brought into harmony;
whether they can be reduced to any common denominator. However that may
be, that he has been one of the most devoted and conscientious servants
of the German cause as he sees it cannot possibly be denied.



JUNE 15, 1888--OCTOBER 30, 1889



    The aged Emperor William I, grandfather of William II, departed
    this life March 9, 1888. He was succeeded by his son, Frederick
    III, who, after a reign of only a few months, died on June 15 of
    the same year. The present Emperor, who was born on January 27,
    1859, was, therefore, twenty-nine at the time of his accession to
    the throne. It is characteristic that his first official act should
    have been an order to the army.

    The close connection between the army and the Prussian Kings is a
    tradition which William II sedulously maintained. In later speeches
    he will frequently give evidence of this desire on his part and
    will quote characteristic sayings of his ancestors to the effect
    that the army is the "_rocher de bronze_," that it is "the only
    pillar on which the empire rests." He will repeat to the army
    officers that phrase of his grandfather: "These are the gentlemen
    upon whom I can rely."

    If the extraordinary versatility of William II is one of his most
    striking qualities, a reading of his speeches will convince us
    that it is none the less true that he is first and foremost a
    soldier. By far the great majority of his speeches are on military
    occasions, and it is the martial triumphs of his ancestors that he
    is most fond of commemorating. He seems to be most at home with
    his officers, and although at one time or another differences have
    arisen between him and every party or caste in the empire, even
    including the Prussian nobility, this close relationship with the
    army has never been clouded by even a momentary estrangement.
    More than any other one subject, army reviews have provided the
    occasion for his speeches. If but a few of these are given here
    it is because his sentiments in this regard have suffered no
    change and these addresses are largely repetitions of his sense
    of satisfaction and the expression of his good-will. That he
    intended to be the virtual leader of his own host is perhaps best
    indicated by the fact that Von Moltke (who was, to be sure, an old
    man) resigned six weeks after his accession to the throne. The
    present war has proved his capacity in this regard, and the army
    has certainly lost nothing in efficiency and has probably gained
    somewhat in confidence since he took over the direction from his
    ancestors and their advisers. The present order was issued on
    the very day of his father's death. On that same date a somewhat
    similar proclamation was addressed to the navy.

    [Age 29]]

Even ere you, my troops, had put aside the external signs of mourning
for your Emperor and King, William I, who lives ever in your hearts,
you are called upon to suffer another heavy blow through the death this
morning, at five minutes past eleven, of my dear and deeply beloved
father, his Majesty, the Emperor and King, Frederick III.

It is in these serious days of mourning that God's will places me at
the head of the army, and it is from a heart stirred deeply, indeed,
that I address my first words to my troops.

I enter with implicit confidence, however, upon this duty to which God
has called me; for I know what a sense for honor and duty has been
implanted in the army by my glorious ancestors, and I know to what
degree this sense has ever and at all times displayed itself.

The absolutely inviolable dependence upon the war lord [_Kriegsherr_]
is, in the army, the inheritance which descends from father to
son, from generation to generation. I would direct your gaze to my
grandfather, who stands before the eyes of all of you, the glorious war
lord, worthy of all honor--a spectacle more beautiful than any other
and one which speaks most tellingly to our hearts; I would direct your
gaze to my dear father, who even as Crown Prince won for himself a
distinguished place in the annals of the army, and to a long succession
of famous ancestors whose names are resplendent in history and whose
hearts beat warmly for the army.

So are we bound together--I and the army--so are we born for one
another, and so shall we hold together indissolubly, whether, as God
wills, we are to have peace or storm.

You are now about to swear to me the oath of fidelity and obedience,
and I vow that I shall ever be mindful of the fact that the eyes of my
forefathers look down upon me from that other world and that I one day
shall have to render up to them an account of the fame and the honor of
the army.




POTSDAM, JUNE 18, 1888

    Three days after his pronouncements to the army and navy Emperor
    William II issued the following proclamation to his people. In
    temperament the son was quite unlike his father. The wife of
    Frederick I and the mother of the present Emperor was an English
    princess, Victoria (daughter of Queen Victoria), and through her
    Frederick is generally said to have been influenced by the more
    liberal English tradition. Critics of William II have occasionally
    annoyed him by repeating, justly or unjustly, that his father
    regarded certain elements in his character with disapproval.
    However that may be, it is true that the people regarded Frederick
    in a different light from that in which they have come to regard
    his son. In reading the speeches of William II one is conscious
    of the fact that he is speaking from a certain eminence, that the
    Emperor never forgets that he enjoys the advantage of position.
    He has, therefore, put between himself and his people a certain
    distance which did not exist in the case of his father. The father
    treated his subjects as if he were one of them, and it is this fact
    that led them fondly to call him "_Unser Fritz_." However great the
    respect which they feel for the son, none of his subjects would
    think of bestowing any such title on William II, and, even if they
    did, it is doubtful whether he would feel in any way complimented
    thereby. He is in this respect more like his ancestor Frederick the
    Great than like his father or grandfather, and it is a striking
    fact that in all his speeches he never once mentions this somewhat
    familiar title, of which his father was proud.

God has again hung about us the pall of deepest mourning. Hardly had
the grave closed upon my ever-memorable grandfather, than his Majesty,
my dearly beloved father, was called from this earthly sojourn to
everlasting peace. The heroic energy, born of Christian humility, with
which, unmindful of his sufferings, he accomplished his royal duties
seemed to leave room for the hope that he would be spared still longer
to the Fatherland. God has willed it otherwise. To the royal sufferer
whose heart was moved by all that was great and beautiful, only a few
months were allotted in which he might display upon the throne the
noble qualities of heart and soul which have won for him the love of
his people. The virtues which adorned him and the victories which he
gained on fields of battle will be gratefully remembered as long as
German hearts beat, and undying fame will illumine his knightly figure
in the history of the Fatherland.

Called to the throne of my fathers, I have taken over the government,
looking to the King of all kings, and have vowed to God, following the
example of my father, to be a righteous and gentle prince, to foster
piety and the fear of God, to maintain peace, to further the welfare of
the country, to be a help to the poor and oppressed, and to be to the
righteous man a true protector.

If I pray God for strength to fulfil these royal duties which He has
laid upon me, I am buoyed up by that faith in the Prussian people
which a consideration of our past history confirms in me. In good
and in evil days Prussia's people have ever stood faithfully to their
kings. I, too, count upon this fidelity, which has ever been preserved
inviolable toward my fathers in all times of trial and danger; for
I am conscious that I reciprocate it whole-heartedly, as a faithful
prince of a faithful people, and that we are both equally strong in our
devotion to a common Fatherland. From this consciousness of the mutual
love which binds me to my people, I derive the confidence that God
will give me wisdom and strength to exercise my kingly office for the
welfare of the Fatherland.


  POTSDAM, June 18, 1888.


BERLIN, JUNE 25, 1888

    After the death of Frederick III the Reichstag was summoned to
    meet in extraordinary session. Most of the affiliated sovereigns
    of the German states assembled to pay homage to the youthful
    Emperor. On this occasion he made from the throne a declaration
    of policy which is interesting as showing his ideas before he was
    subjected to the pressure of events. Before he had succeeded to
    the throne it had been generally reported, possibly because of
    his known fondness for the army, that he was by nature bellicose.
    This report seriously distressed the new sovereign, and he began
    his reign with declarations, which have often been renewed since,
    that he would work for peace. He likewise outlines his foreign
    policy and expresses the hope that he may further develop friendly
    relations with Russia. In this he was to achieve but little
    success, and a few years later the agreement which bound Russia
    to observe neutrality in case Germany were involved in war was
    allowed to lapse, much to the disgust of Bismarck, who at that time
    had been superseded by Caprivi. Frederick the Great had warned
    his successors that in the future, in case Prussia wished to wage
    any war, she would first have to assure herself of the neutrality
    of Russia. Bismarck had followed this policy and had established
    it on the basis of an agreement. As the relationship to Russia
    was to be of particular consequence, it will be interesting to
    have before us an article which appeared October 26, 1896, in the
    _Hamburger Nachrichten_, recognized as expressing the views of the
    great Chancellor. It announces that already in Bismarck's time
    the wire between Berlin and St. Petersburg was cut and takes up
    certain events of the year 1890. "Up to this time," we are told,
    "both empires were fully agreed that in case one of them should be
    attacked the other would preserve a benevolent neutrality. After
    the departure of Bismarck this agreement was not renewed, and if we
    are correctly informed about events in Berlin, it was not Russia,
    piqued at the change in chancellors, but Count Caprivi who declined
    to continue this mutual assurance, while Russia was prepared to do

    Emperor William's announcement with regard to his personal
    friendship and the interests of the realm may be taken as heralding
    a new era in German foreign policy. He inaugurated what has been
    called "personal diplomacy," and felt that it was possible to
    arrange the relationships between states by personally visiting
    and conferring with other sovereigns. Shortly after his accession,
    therefore, he set out on a tour of the European capitals. Bismarck,
    who planned his foreign relations on the basis of race psychology
    and possible future clashes of interests, opposed this strenuously.
    The visit to St. Petersburg (19th to 24th of July, 1888) gave rise
    to certain unpleasant scenes and was only returned by the Czar
    in a very perfunctory manner fifteen months later (October 11,
    1889). The effect of the friendly attentions shown the Czar on this
    occasion was doubtless weakened by the fact that, less than three
    weeks later, Emperor William felt called upon to visit the Sultan,
    by whom he was most enthusiastically received in Constantinople.
    Even though the Emperor was most sincere in his desire to preserve
    friendship with Russia, events were to prove that his method of
    cultivating diplomatic relations was far less successful than
    Bismarck's way of working in silence and waiting for events.

    With regard to the internal administration of the realm, the
    problem that seemed most pressing to William II was the rapid
    growth of the Social Democratic party. This problem had already
    engaged the attention of William I and of Bismarck, who recognized
    its gravity. But here, too, the Emperor and Chancellor were
    to disagree. The former felt that he could easily master the
    situation, as may be seen from his remark to Bismarck: "Leave the
    Social Democrats to me." He was doubtless sincerely concerned for
    the welfare of the laborer and recognized in it one of the sources
    of the prosperity of the state. His policy was to be patriarchal
    and, bluntly put in Shakespearian phrase, amounted to giving them
    medicine to make them love him. But if, to change the metaphor, he
    offered them his hand in a velvet glove, they were, as may be seen
    from his speech, soon to discover that it was a hand of iron.


I greet you with deep sorrow in my heart, and I know that you grieve
with me. The recent memory of my late father's sufferings, the
astounding fact that three months after the death of his Majesty,
Emperor William I, I am called upon to mount the throne, arouses the
same feeling in the hearts of all Germans, and our grief has found a
sympathetic response in all countries of the world. Under the weight of
this sorrow, I pray God to give me strength to fulfil the high office
to which His will has called me.

As I follow this command I have before my eyes the example which
Emperor William bequeathed to his successors when, after serious wars,
he ruled with a love of peace. This same example the reign of my late
father strove to maintain in so far as he was not thwarted in his aims
by his illness and death.

I have called you together, Honored Gentlemen, in order in your
presence to announce to the German people that I am determined, as
Emperor and as King, to follow in that same path by which my late
grandfather won for himself the trust of his allies, the love of the
German people, and the kindly recognition of foreign countries. It lies
with God whether I shall be successful in this or not; but earnestly
shall I strive to that end.

The most important tasks of the German Emperor lie in the province of
establishing military and political safety for the realm from without
and in supervising the execution of the laws of the empire within. The
Constitution of the empire forms the highest of these laws. To guard
and defend it and all those rights which it secures to both of the
legislative bodies[3] of the nation and to every German citizen, as
well as those which it secures to the Emperor and to each of the states
of the union, and to the reigning princes, is the most important right
and duty of the Emperor.

[3] Bundesrat and Reichstag.

With regard to legislation in the realm, according to the Constitution
I am called upon to act more in my capacity as King of Prussia than
in that as the German Emperor; but in both it will be my aim to carry
out the work of imperial legislation in the same spirit in which my
late grandfather began it. Especially do I take to heart in its fullest
application the message published by him on November 17, 1881,[4] and
shall proceed in that spirit to bring it about that the legislation for
the working population shall make more secure the protection which,
in accordance with the principles of Christian ethics, it can afford
the weak and oppressed in the struggle for existence. I hope it may
be possible in this way more nearly to eliminate unhealthy social
distinctions, and I cherish the hope that in fostering our internal
welfare I shall receive the harmonious support of all true subjects of
the realm, without division of party.

[4] As this message of Emperor William I was practically the beginning
    of labor legislation in Germany and is several times referred
    to, its significant portion is given below. Emperor William I
    had already failed in his policy of crushing Socialism through
    drastic measures of repression. He was now to initiate a policy of
    attempting to kill it with kindness. In spite of certain admirable
    provisions, this too was to fail. The Social Democrats had learned
    from bitter experience that they did not enjoy the good-will of
    either the grandfather or the grandson, and for this reason the
    projects of social legislation were looked upon with suspicion and
    accepted without enthusiasm. The awkward and compromising nature of
    the Emperor's position is evident in the preamble.

    "Already in February of this year we expressed the conviction
    that the healing of social grievances was not to be sought
    exclusively in the repression of Social Democratic excesses, but
    also in the direct advancement of the welfare of the laborer.
    We hold it to be our royal duty to impress this matter upon the
    Reichstag, and we would look back with greater satisfaction upon
    all the achievements with which God has blessed our reign if we
    could carry away with us the conviction that we had left to the
    Fatherland new and lasting pledges of internal peace and to those
    in need of help greater security and provisions for support,
    upon which they may make rightful claim. In our attempts to this
    end we are sure of the support of all the affiliated governments
    and count upon the support of the Reichstag without distinction
    of parties. To this end a draft of a bill for the protection of
    laborers against accidents, which was presented by the affiliated
    governments in the previous session, will be reformulated in view
    of the discussions held in the Reichstag and will be offered for
    further consideration. As a supplement to it, a project will be
    brought forward which proposes a similar organization of the funds
    for laboring men's sick insurance. But those, too, who on account
    of age or infirmity are no longer able to work have just claim
    upon the community for a higher degree of governmental protection
    than it has previously been possible to accord them. To find the
    proper ways and means for making such provision is one of the most
    difficult but one of the highest tasks of any society which is
    based upon the foundations of a Christian national life. By calling
    upon the sources of this strong national life and organizing it
    into incorporated associations under state protection we hope to
    bring about the solution of problems which the state alone could
    not solve with the same success. But even in this way the goal
    cannot be reached without the employment of important means."

I hold it, however, likewise my duty to see to it that our political
and social development proceeds according to law and to meet with
firmness any attempt which aims at undermining the order of the state.

In foreign politics I am determined to keep peace with every one in
so far as in me lies. My love for the German army and my position in
it will never lead me into the temptation of robbing the country of
the benefits of peace, unless some attack upon the empire, or her
allies, forces war upon us. The army is to make our peace secure; yet
if that should, nevertheless, be threatened, the army will be able to
re-establish it with honor. And it will be able to do so by reason
of the strength which it has received from the last army bill, which
you voted unanimously. To make use of that force to wage a war of
aggression lies far from my thoughts. Germany needs no new martial
glory nor any conquest of whatever sort after she has, once for all,
established her right to exist as a single and independent nation.

Our alliance with Austria-Hungary is publicly known; I hold fast to
this in German faith not only because it is concluded but because I
perceive in this defensive alliance a basis for European balance of
power as well as a legacy from German history. The public opinion of
the entire German people supports this alliance, and it is founded
upon the European law of nations, as it prevailed undisputed until
1866. Similar historical relations, and the fact that we have similar
national needs to-day, ally us with Italy. Both nations wish to
hold fast to the blessings of peace in order to devote themselves
undisturbed to the strengthening of their newly acquired unity, to the
development of their national institutions, and to the furtherance of
their prosperity.

To my great satisfaction, our existing agreements with Austria-Hungary
and Italy permit me to foster carefully my personal friendship for
the Russian Emperor and the friendly relations which have existed for
a hundred years with the neighboring Russian Empire, a course which
accords with my own feelings as well as with the interests of Germany.

I stand as ready to serve the Fatherland in the conscientious promotion
of peace as in the care for our army and rejoice in the traditional
relations with foreign powers through which my efforts in the former
direction are being furthered.

Trusting in God and in the ability of our people to defend themselves,
I entertain the hope that for an appreciable time we may be allowed to
preserve and strengthen through peaceful labor what my two predecessors
on the throne had acquired through their efforts on the field of battle.



    The first months of the Emperor's reign were devoted largely
    to visiting the heads of the confederated German states and in
    cultivating the acquaintance of foreign rulers. His main purpose,
    as he tells us on a later occasion, was to combat the idea that it
    was his intention to enter upon a career of war.

    The workingman's insurance act, which has been referred to, was
    one of the most important legislative provisions ever made in the
    interests of labor. The cost of this insurance was distributed
    between the employer, the employed, and the state. In spite of its
    undoubted benefits, it had failed to disarm the Social Democrats,
    and the party had continued to increase. They complained that
    the proportion of the cost borne by them was too great, and, as
    they had been previously and were soon again to be treated as
    enemies, they were inclined to look upon it as a bribe. By his
    "social-political" legislation the Emperor meant to forestall the
    Socialist programme. When this well-intentioned movement failed to
    dissolve the party, which continued to increase, he was not slow to
    show his resentment.


When I greeted you for the first time, at the beginning of my reign,
you stood with me under the weight of the severe visitations which my
house and the empire have experienced in the course of the present
year. The sorrow over this loss will never be wholly extinguished
during the lifetime of the present generation, but it cannot hinder me
from following in the footsteps of my late ancestors and completely
fulfilling the demands of duty with manly vigor and fidelity.

Buoyed up by this sense of duty and assuming that this exists in you to
the same degree, I give you my greeting and bid you welcome as we again
take up our common labors.

My travels have carried me into different parts of the empire, and
everywhere I have found evidences, both on the part of my exalted
colleagues and of the people, that the princes and the population
of Germany are, with absolute trust, devoted to the empire and its
institutions and find the pledge of safety in their union. From such
testimony you have doubtless come to the conclusion, no less satisfying
to you than to me, that the organic union which now binds the empire
together has taken deep and firm rooting in the people at large. I
therefore feel the need of gratefully expressing on this occasion the
pleasure which it gives me.

It fills me with great satisfaction that, after difficult and laborious
negotiations, the inclusion of the free Hanseatic cities, Hamburg and
Bremen, into the customs union of the empire has now been realized.
I see in this the blessed fruit of our combined efforts. May the
expectations which we count upon from this extension of the empire's
customs districts be realized in fullest measure, both for the empire
and for these two most important seacoast towns!

The government of the Swiss Federation has suggested a revision of the
commercial treaty between Germany and Switzerland. Filled with the
desire of confirming the existing friendly relations between the two
countries and of extending them also into the realm of their commercial
policies, I stand ready to meet their proposal. The negotiations have
been conducted through the offices of representatives from the states
bordering upon Switzerland, and their result consists in a further
agreement through which the treaty regulations for reciprocal trade
will be extended and the exchange of industrial products will be made
easier. After its successful acceptance by the Bundesrat the agreement
will be presented to you with the proposal, in order that you may
bestow upon it your constitutional sanction.

The budget for the next fiscal year will be laid before you without
delay. The draft gives proof of the satisfactory condition of the
imperial finances. As a result of the reforms instituted in the
last few years, with your co-operation, in the way of tariffs and
internal revenues, surplus receipts may be expected, and upon this
basis we shall not only be provided with a new means of fulfilling
the inevitable obligations of the empire but it may be possible for
our constituent states to expect an increase of means for their own

I greet with joy the signs of a revival of economic activity in various
fields. Even though the pressure which bears upon the farmer is not
yet relieved, nevertheless, as I look forward to the possibility which
has lately appeared of a greater utilization of certain agricultural
products, I hope that an amelioration also of this most powerful branch
of our industrial work will be brought about.

The bill which has already been announced on the regulation of the
industrial and agricultural societies will be laid before you for your
decision. It is to be hoped that the enfranchising of associations with
limited liability which the bill proposes will prove itself beneficial
in increasing agricultural credit.

Certain shortcomings which have appeared in connection with the
insurance against sickness call for legal remedy. The necessary
preliminary investigations for this have so far progressed as to make
it possible, in all probability, to lay before you in the course of
this session an adequate presentation of the case.

As a precious legacy from my grandfather, I have taken over the problem
of carrying out the social-political legislation begun by him. I do not
allow myself to be carried away by the hope that through legal measures
the exigencies of our time and human misery can be abolished from
the world. I judge it to be a duty, however, of the executive power
to strive with all its faculties toward the mitigation of existing
industrial grievances and through organized measures to emphasize
the fact that love of our neighbor, which has its foundations in
Christianity itself, should be a recognized duty of the entire state.
The difficulties which stand in the way of the state's assisting in
the universal insurance of all workers against the dangers of age and
sickness are great; but, with God's help, they are not insurmountable.
As the result of extensive investigations a bill will be presented to
you which reveals a possible means of attaining this end.

Our settlements in Africa have imposed upon the German Empire the duty
of converting that part of the world to a Christian civilization. The
friendly government of England and her Parliament has known for a
hundred years that the fulfilment of this obligation must begin with
combating the hunting of slaves and the trade in negroes. I have,
therefore, sought and concluded an understanding with England, whose
meaning and aim you shall learn. On it depend further negotiations with
other friendly and interested governments and further proposals for the

Our relations with all foreign governments are peaceful, and my efforts
are continually directed toward cementing this peace. Our treaties
with Austria and Italy have no other aim. It is incompatible with my
Christian faith and with the duties which as Emperor I have assumed
toward the people needlessly to bring upon Germany the sorrows of a
war, even of a victorious one. In this conviction I have looked upon
it as my duty soon after I ascended the throne to greet not only my
affiliated rulers within the realm but also the friendly neighboring
sovereigns. I have sought to find an understanding with them concerning
the fulfilment of this trust which God has placed upon us, of
preserving, so far as in us lies, the peace and welfare of our people.
The confidence with which I and my policies have been received at all
the courts which I have visited leads me to hope that, with God's help,
I and my allies and my friends will succeed in preserving the peace of


BERLIN, MAY 14, 1889

    The Emperor's change of attitude toward the Socialists is evident
    from his conduct in the conflict which had arisen in the Rhenish
    and Westphalian coal districts between the miners and their
    employers. He personally received delegations from both sides. The
    miners' delegation consisted of Schröder (spokesman), Siegel, and
    Bunte. In answer to Schröder's speech, the Emperor announced:

It goes without saying that every subject, when he presents a wish or
a petition, has the ear of his Emperor. Of this I have given evidence
in that I have invited the deputation to come here and to set forth
their wishes in person. You have, however, placed yourselves in the
wrong, because your agitation is unlawful for no other reason than the
fact that the fourteen days of warning have not yet expired, after
which the workers would have been legally justified in ceasing work.
In consequence of this you are guilty of breaking a contract. It is
self-evident that this breach of contract has angered and injured the

Further, there are workers who do not wish to strike and who, either
through force or by means of threats, are hindered from continuing
their work. Also, certain of the workers have seized upon organs of
the authorities and upon property which did not belong to them and
have even, in individual cases, offered resistance to the military
force called to protect them. Finally, you wish that work should be
generally resumed again only when your combined demands shall have
been fulfilled at all the mines.

As for the demands themselves, I shall, through my government,
carefully examine them and have the results of the investigation
delivered to you through the appointed authorities. Should, however,
there occur transgressions against the public order and peace, or
should the agitation ally itself with the Social Democrats, then I
should not be in a position to reconcile your wishes with my good-will
as ruler. For, to me, every Social Democrat is synonymous with an enemy
of the realm and of the Fatherland. Should I, therefore, discover that
Social-Democratic tendencies become involved in the agitation and
instigate unlawful opposition, I will step in sternly and ruthlessly
and bring to bear all the power that I possess--and it is great.

Now go to your homes, think over what I have said, and seek to
influence your comrades to reflection. Above all, however, you must
not, under any circumstances, hinder your comrades who wish to return
to their work.


BERLIN, MAY 22, 1889

    At the time of the great spring review of this year, King Humbert
    came to Berlin to return the Emperor's visit. A state banquet was
    held, at which the Emperor proposed the following toast to the King
    of Italy:

May it please your Majesty to accept from me and my people our
heartiest thanks for the proof of the friendship which your Majesty has
given me by this visit!

My troops, likewise, are filled with grateful pride that they have been
able to conduct themselves with honor in the eyes of your Majesty, an
experienced soldier.

Full of the happy remembrance of the army manoeuvres at Rome, I raise
my glass and drink to the health of your Majesty and of her Majesty,
the Queen; to the health of your brave troops as well as to the
unchanging friendship with the house of Savoy, whose motto, "_Sempre
avanti, Savoja_," has led to the unification of the kingdom of Italy.
Long live his Majesty, King Humbert!



    On this date the Emperor was created admiral of the English fleet
    by Queen Victoria. On the same day he was present at a regatta on
    Sandown Bay, where he replied as follows to a toast offered by the
    Prince of Wales:

I prize most highly the honor which has been shown me by the Queen in
appointing me admiral of the English fleet. I sincerely rejoice to have
seen the manoeuvres of the fleet, which I consider the finest in the
world. Germany possesses an army which answers to her needs, and if the
British nation possesses a fleet sufficient for the needs of England,
this in itself will be considered by Europe in general as a weighty
factor in the maintenance of peace.



    On his mother's side, who was a princess royal of England, the
    Emperor was a grandson of Queen Victoria, to whom he paid frequent
    visits and whom he held in high regard. William II began his
    reign with cordial feelings toward his island neighbors. If the
    friendship between the two nations was never particularly close,
    the estrangement of modern times may be said to have begun in
    colonial and commercial rivalries in the last decades of the
    nineteenth century and to have been sharpened by events in China
    and especially by the Boer War. The situation became more acute
    after the Morocco incident, in 1904-5, and when on that occasion
    England sided with France she was by a large portion of the German
    people definitely aligned with their enemies. The present toast,
    which was reported in this form in the _Kreuzzeitung_ of August 9,
    1889, was received with no protest or denial. The Emperor had been
    present at the manoeuvres of 29,000 English troops at Aldershot,
    under General Sir Evelyn Wood. The toast was offered in the camp
    tent of the Duke of Cambridge, in response to one by that officer.

It gives me particular satisfaction to have appointed the Duke of
Cambridge, the commander-in-chief of the English army, as a member of
the 28th Regiment, since this same regiment had as chief at one time
our comrade at Waterloo, the Duke of Wellington.

The friendship with the English, which had been sealed in blood, my
honored grandfather maintained to the end of his life.

The British army fills me with the greatest admiration. If ever the
possibility of counting upon volunteers is doubted, I shall be in a
position to give testimony to their capacity.

At Malplaquet and at Waterloo the Prussian and British blood was shed
in a common cause.



    On the occasion of Alexander III's visit to Berlin the Emperor
    offered the following toast at the banquet in the White Room of the
    Royal Palace. It may be "considering too curiously to consider
    so," but to many there will seem to be something matter-of-fact in
    the Czar's reply, which is printed below. This friendship between
    the rulers of the two neighboring countries was, however, outwardly
    preserved up to the time of the present war, as is evident to
    those who will consult the telegrams exchanged between William and
    Nicolas on the eve of the outbreak.

I drink to the health of my honored friend, his Majesty, the Emperor of
Russia, and to the continuation of the friendship which has existed for
more than one hundred years between our houses and which, as a legacy
received from my ancestors, I am determined to foster.

    The Czar replied in French, as follows:

_Je remercie Votre Majesté de Vos bonnes paroles et je partage
entièrement les sentiments que Vous venez d'exprimer. A la santé de Sa
Majesté, l'Empereur et Roi--Hourra!_



    On visits to his English relatives the Emperor had, as a lad, made
    occasional sojourns in Great Britain, and that romantic temperament
    of which he was to give indications even in much later years was
    much impressed by the sight of English ships. He recalls the memory
    on many occasions. As will be plain later, he early conceived the
    idea and realized the necessity of a powerful fleet. As this is his
    first reference to the navy in the present volume it is interesting
    to note the attitude of humble discipleship which in the mid-years
    of the next decade is to give way to quite another conception.

I am proud of the rank which Queen Victoria has bestowed upon me. It
might be supposed that my interest in the British navy dated from my
appointment as admiral; that, however, is not so. From my earliest
youth, when as a boy I ran about on the wharves at Portsmouth, I was
much interested in British ships. My inspection of the ships to-day
has afforded me great satisfaction, and I congratulate you on their
appearance. Nelson's famous watchword is no longer necessary. They all
do their duty, and we as a young sea power follow England in order to
learn from the English navy.



MAY 6, 1890--JUNE 21, 1895


BERLIN, MAY 6, 1890

    This address to the Reichstag is of particular importance. The
    Emperor had now visited most of the sovereigns of Europe and felt
    that he had established himself. He was here definitely outlining
    a policy which he himself had framed. In that period when the
    Emperor was still Prince William, Bismarck had said: "In him there
    is something of Frederick the Great, and he is also able to become
    as despotic as Frederick the Great. What a blessing that we have
    a parliamentary government!" He had likewise prophesied that the
    Emperor would be his own chancellor, and he had discovered in
    his own case that the prophecy was a true one. In the spring of
    this year, after numerous misunderstandings, Bismarck had himself
    been forced into retirement, and henceforth his name will be
    mentioned but rarely. One of the points on which they had disagreed
    was precisely this project for labor legislation, which was,
    unfortunately, not destined to fulfil the hopes entertained by
    William II. A number of the projects here laid down were carried
    out only partially and others not at all. So, for instance, in this
    same year the Emperor had issued the following decree:

    "For the fostering of peace between employers and laborers
    legal regulations are contemplated regarding the forms in which
    the laborers shall, through representatives who possess their
    confidence, participate in the regulation of matters of common
    concern and the protection of their interests in negotiations
    with employers and with the organs of my government. By such
    institutions the laborers are to be enabled to give free and
    peaceful expression to their wishes and complaints, and the
    state authorities are to be given the opportunity of continually
    acquainting themselves with the conditions of the workers and of
    cultivating contact with the latter."

    As late as 1905 it had not been carried into execution, though
    chambers of labor have since been established which partially carry
    out this end.

    The industrial courts of which the Emperor speaks have been far
    from successful in arbitration disputes. They are established in
    all cities of over 20,000 inhabitants and consist of equal numbers
    of employers and employees. Dawson holds that unwillingness to
    mediate lies with the employers. During the year 1905, 406 courts
    acted as boards of conciliation on 350 occasions, all told, and
    in only 128 cases were they successful. Part of the failure lies
    in the fact that no wage agreements existed. Of 219 "aggressive"
    strikes in Berlin in 1905, organized by the "free" trades
    federations, 55 were for the introduction of wage agreements.

    The Emperor's disappointment at the failure of his policy to check
    the growing disaffection of the laboring classes will later be

    It is significant that in this address, though measures for the
    army are strongly urged, there is as yet no mention of the navy.


Since you have been chosen in the recent elections to work in common
with the allied governments, I bid you welcome at this the opening of
the eighth legislative session of the Reichstag. I earnestly hope that
you may succeed in finding a satisfactory solution for the important
problems of legislation which here confront you. A number of these
problems are of so pressing a nature that it did not seem possible to
defer longer the summoning of the Reichstag.

I consider as most important among them the further enlargement of the
bill concerning the protection of the laborer. The strikes which have
occurred in different parts of the country during the past year have
given me occasion to bring about an investigation of the question as
to whether our present legislation has, to the fullest extent, taken
cognizance of those wishes of the working people which are really just
and reasonable and within the state's power of regulation. The question
of first importance concerns the guarantee of Sunday as a day of rest
for the laboring man, as well as the limitation of woman and child
labor in accordance with consideration for humanity and with regard
to the natural laws of development. The governments of the affiliated
states are convinced that the proposals in this connection made by the
last Reichstag can, according to their present content, be given legal
effectiveness without harm to other interests. In this connection,
however, numerous other provisions have shown themselves unsatisfactory
and capable of improvement. To this category belong especially the
legal provisions for the protection of the laborer against danger
to his life, health, and morals, as well as the laws concerning the
announcement of regulations of labor. The prescriptions concerning
the working men's books need amplification with the aim of insuring
the respect due the older men against the increasing impertinence of
the younger laborers. The consequent changes demanded and the further
expansion of the trade regulations find their expression in a bill
which you will shortly receive.

A further proposal endeavors to secure the better regulation of the
industrial arbitration courts and, likewise, an organization of these
which shall make it possible to use them as mediators in cases of
dispute between employers and employees over the terms on which labor
shall be continued or resumed.

I trust that your willing co-operation will secure an agreement of
the law-making bodies concerning the reform laid before you and
thereby take a step forward toward the solution of our relations to
the laboring class. The more the laboring population recognizes the
serious earnestness with which the government is striving to render
their status satisfactory, so much the more will they be conscious of
the dangers which must arise from their insistence upon extravagant
and impossible demands. In the proper provision for the laborer lies
the most effective means of increasing the strength which I and my
associated rulers are called upon and willing to use in opposing with
unyielding determination any attempt to shake the provisions of the law.

Nevertheless, in the case of this reform there can be question only
of such measures as are feasible without endangering the Fatherland's
industrial activity and with it the most important vital interests of
the laborer himself. Our industry forms only one department in the
economic work of all the peoples who take part in the competition in
the market of the world. With this in mind, I have sought to bring
about an interchange of opinions on the matter, among the states
of Europe where similar economic conditions prevail, as to how far
a general recognition of the legislative problems relative to the
safety of the working man can be established and brought to pass. I
am compelled to gratefully acknowledge that these suggestions have
found favor in all states concerned and especially in those where the
same idea was already being agitated and was approaching execution.
The course of the international conference which met here fills me
with especial satisfaction. Its conclusions are the expression of a
general attitude with regard to this most important province of our
contemporary civilization. The principles there laid down will, I have
no doubt, prove a rich field which, with God's help, shall blossom to
the blessing of the workers of all countries and which will also bear
fruit in drawing all nations together.

The continued preservation of peace is ever the goal of my efforts.
I dare express the conviction that I have succeeded in securing the
confidence of all foreign governments in the good faith of this policy
of mine. Like myself and my esteemed affiliated rulers, the German
people recognize that it is the problem of the empire to preserve peace
by cultivating the alliances already concluded for our defense, and
the friendly relations now existing with all foreign powers, in order
to further prosperity and civilization. For the accomplishment of this
task, however, we need an armed force compatible with our position in
the heart of Europe. Every postponement of matters pertaining to the
army endangers the political balance of power and with it the success
of our policy directed toward maintaining peace.

Since the basis of our army organization was decided upon for a
definite period the military organization of our neighbors has been
broadened and perfected to an unforeseen degree. Indeed, we, too,
have neglected nothing in our attempt to strengthen our forces, in
so far as this was possible within the limits prescribed by the law.
Nevertheless, what we could do within these limits was so little that
we cannot postpone a consideration of the whole question without danger
to ourselves. An increase of the present peace strength and an increase
of the bodies of troops--especially for the field-artillery--must not
be longer deferred. A bill will be laid before you according to which
the necessary measures for strengthening the army will go into effect
on the 1st of October of this year.

The plan which has been instituted in West Africa toward the
suppression of the slave-trade and for the protection of the German
interests has, during the last months, made progress, thanks to the
self-sacrificing activity of our officers and officials who are
stationed there. The complete restoration of peace in those districts
may be expected very shortly. The expense thus incurred will be covered
by an additional grant.

The budget for the current fiscal year already needs a corresponding
enlargement on account of the plans referred to. Furthermore, the
increase of salary for a part of the officials of the realm, which has
long been projected and which has become ever more pressing, can no
longer be delayed. The supplementary budget which is to be submitted
to you will give you an opportunity to prove your friendly interest in
satisfying this need.

If the labors hereby imposed upon you come to a successful issue, new
and sound guarantees for the inner welfare of the Fatherland will then
have been won. May it be granted to us through common effort to achieve
this end!



    The review of the Ninth Army Corps took place in the presence of
    the Empress, Princes Henry and Albert, of Archduke Karl Stephen
    of Austria, and Count Moltke at Flensburg. It will be remembered
    that in 1864 Bismarck succeeded in enlisting Austria to aid
    Prussia in a war upon Denmark, which was at that time deprived of
    Schleswig-Holstein, the harbor of Kiel, and more than 1,000,000
    inhabitants. One of the battles of the war to which the Emperor
    refers was fought in this district. The address was made at the
    banquet following the review.

My opinion of to-day's performance of the Ninth Army Corps under the
command of your Excellency [General von Leszczynski] I have already
expressed to you and your officers.

Whoever, like myself, has for any length of time stood at the front
or partly at the front and partly as spectator has been present at
many imperial manoeuvres knows what such a parade means to an army
corps. I know very well what arduous preliminary labor is involved, the
agitation, the attention, the exertion of the troops. I know very well
how each individual officer, high or low, every soldier, rejoices in
and yet with a certain solicitude looks forward to the moment when he
shall parade before his war lord.[5]

[5] Kriegsherr.

I know from my own experience when I was still a captain what
satisfaction I felt when my adjutant could call to me that the Emperor
had nodded as the company passed by him. This is true to-day,
likewise, in the case of every officer.

I repeat to you my hearty thanks and express to you my congratulation
for the magnificent parade. This army corps which you have marshalled
before me has a bearing and discipline which I must demand
unconditionally from every army corps. I do not doubt for a moment
that the work done in preparing for a review will prove useful in the
preparation for battle.

We stand here upon historic ground, on which our armies, united with
those of Austria, jointly won a bloody victory.

I raise my glass and drink to the Ninth Army Corps in the expectation
that here and hereafter, in war as in peace, it will maintain its
famous traditions. Long live the Ninth Army Corps!



    The following address shows the Emperor in one of the little-known
    phases of his amazingly versatile career. It exhibits, likewise,
    his command of detailed knowledge in a field where we should least
    expect it and his solicitude for the welfare of faithful subjects.
    Besides his interest in the sea, he has also for many years been
    much interested in agriculture; and his estate in East Prussia
    has been in a sense an experiment station. He prides himself on
    being a pioneer and in personally supervising his domain and is
    occasionally pleased to call himself a farmer. He attended the
    meetings of the Prussian Agricultural Commission and at one of the
    sessions took part in the discussion on the means of safeguarding
    the life of the laborers.

Two points have occurred to me which I would like to ask you to
consider. It is worthy of note that during my reign there have
been brought to my attention many striking cases in which laboring
women have been killed through accidents with machinery. I receive
regularly from the Minister of Justice tabulated lists of requests[6]
for pardon, and it seems to me that there is among them a striking
number of cases of women farmhands who have met with accidents in
tending machines. As has already been said, I am not granting these
pardons as freely as formerly. It is to be noted, furthermore, that a
great difference prevails in the adjudication of the cases in which
penalties may be inflicted and in the penalties themselves. I next
inquired why these women workers--it was especially girls working with
the thrashing-machines--were killed, and it usually appeared that
the girls were caught by their dresses in the transmission pulleys
and so became entangled in them. Then I asked if there were no means
of protection there. Yes, indeed, they said, according to the police
regulations the pulleys must have a cover or a box must be put over
them, but in each of these cases this had not been attended to. There
also appeared here, on the one side, a certain indifference either on
the part of the owner or of the person who was conducting the work
concerning the life of the women in his employ and, on the other
side, an indifference on the part of the women themselves, who had
become accustomed to working near the moving parts of the machines
and to stepping over the pulleys, and finally the accident happened.
Therefore, may I ask you that in using the word "machines" these
provisions regarding power transmission be not forgotten. Many of
the machines stand in one place and the apparatus for transmission
is in another place or in the yard, and that is a chief cause of the
accidents. For every one passes through the yard, and especially if
there are children playing there, all too easily some misfortune may

[6] From employers, of course.

Let me, therefore, remark, concerning what one of the preceding
speakers has said, that I myself have come to the same conclusion as
Professor Schmoller. I believe that it is not sufficient that the
state should lay upon the worker the obligation to be careful and that
it should give him directions how to conduct himself with regard to the
machines. This cannot be carried out.

I am much more of the opinion that, if such is your desire and if it is
plain that harm has resulted from the fact that the workers move about
too carelessly, it is much better that the obligation should be put
upon the owner or upon the person commissioned to conduct the machines
and that he be required to watch over the employees more carefully.
If the owner cannot burden himself with it then he should have such
officials as would have sufficient influence with the worker to make
him be careful. We must not forget what, for the most part, such a
worker is like and what he knows of machinery. Frequently he knows only
that it cuts or that it is otherwise dangerous. A certain grip is shown
him--he must do it like this--but the rest he does not understand and
regards with indifference. Consequently regulations which concern only
or more particularly the laborer would not help, for the people would
not understand their aim and when the regulation caused them annoyance
or trouble would fail to consider it and thus render themselves liable
to accident.

I believe, therefore, that it is most important in the question of
the conduct of agricultural machinery that we should work toward
proper supervision over the laborer by the employer. When this happens
accidents will begin to diminish.

It has interested me very much to learn here that it is not the
machines but altogether different circumstances which cause most of
the accidents in agricultural operations and that particularly in
all provinces where horses are employed accidents are frequent. I am
therefore pleased that this phase of the question of protecting against
accident has also come up here and that the gentlemen are now engaged
upon it.

For the rest it has been a great pleasure to me to take part in these


BERLIN, MARCH 14, 1891

    On this occasion a deputation from Alsace-Lorraine presented a
    protest against the continuance of the _Passzwang_, a rule which
    made it impossible to leave Alsace-Lorraine except under very
    special circumstances and on receiving a pass from the imperial
    agent. The rule was particularly obnoxious, and the strictness with
    which it had been enforced was much resented, even by subjects
    favorably disposed to the empire. It was, however, merely one
    of many grievances. Since the time of the Franco-Prussian War,
    Alsace-Lorraine had been governed like a conquered province--by
    a governor appointed by, and responsible to, the Emperor alone.
    Up to this time the policy had been one of repression, save for
    a very brief period. It is possible that the Emperor might have
    been inclined to give them some relief had it not been for the
    unfortunate result of the visit of his mother to Paris. After a
    visit in London, the Empress Frederick, in February, 1891 (it
    is supposed on the advice of her son), visited Paris and, while
    there, was to ask certain of the French artists to exhibit at
    the Berlin exhibition. It had evidently been assumed that the
    time had come for a _rapprochement_. The Empress descended at
    the German embassy very quietly and had received promises from
    several artists, when her presence in Paris became known to the
    League of French Patriots and to the germanophobe Déroulède, who
    immediately started a violent agitation and demonstrations against
    Germany. The artists withdrew their promises under the pressure
    of outraged patriotic opinion, and the situation became so tense
    that the Empress was forced to depart very hastily in a manner
    that suggested flight. The incident tended to make bad feeling
    on both sides and reacted unfavorably upon the attitude of the
    empire toward the former French provinces. The difficulties of
    circulation were increased, and the regulations about passes were
    made particularly trying. These difficulties were removed in 1899,
    but the provinces continued to protest, as they were not given
    equal rights with the other German states and have not enjoyed them
    up to the present. In May, 1911, a new so-called constitution was
    given to Alsace-Lorraine. The executive power is exercised by the
    Emperor in the name of the empire; the province has three votes
    in the Bundesrat, which are so restricted that they give very
    little satisfaction to Alsace-Lorraine and are so far under the
    control of Prussia that they give considerable dissatisfaction to
    other German states. The Emperor appoints officials, including the
    _Statthalter_, or governor, and the delegates are instructed by the
    _Statthalter_ and must vote according to instructions. The votes
    do not count in any vote concerning the imperial Constitution.
    There was much protest because the new constitution did not grant
    the provinces sufficient independence. The previous Provincial
    Assembly (_Landesausschuss_) had been summarily closed on the
    9th of May, 1911. Affairs were but little improved under the new
    arrangement, and the Emperor came to Strasburg in great anger, May
    13, 1912, and made the following threatening address: "If this
    keeps up I shall knock your constitution to bits. Up to the present
    you have known me from my good side, but you can perhaps learn to
    know me from the other side also. If things do not change, we will
    make of Alsace-Lorraine a Prussian province." This speech of the
    Emperor's is not printed officially, but it was made the subject
    of an interpellation in the Reichstag on May 17, 1912, and the
    burgomaster of Strasburg admitted that the sense of the imperial
    utterance was properly given. With regard to Alsace-Lorraine, the
    Emperor has tried both kindness and severity. The Zabern incident
    proved that in neither of these policies had he succeeded in
    winning either the love or the subjection of the inhabitants.

    The following is the estimate of Dr. H. A. Gibbons on the situation
    in Alsace-Lorraine immediately before the outbreak of the European

    "One could easily fill many pages with illustrations of senseless
    persecutions, most of them of the pettiest character, but some more
    serious in nature, which Alsace and Lorraine have had to endure
    since the granting of the constitution. Newspapers, illustrated
    journals, clubs, and organizations of all kinds have been annoyed
    constantly by police interference. Their editors, artists, and
    managers have been brought frequently into court. Zislin and Hansi,
    celebrated caricaturists, have found themselves provoked to bolder
    and bolder defiances by successive condemnations and have endured
    imprisonment as well as fines. Hansi was sentenced to a year's
    imprisonment by the High Court of Leipsic only a month before
    the present war broke out and chose exile rather than a Prussian

    "The greatest effort during the past few years has been made in the
    schools to influence the minds of the growing generation against
    the '_souvenir de France_,' and to impress upon the Alsacians what
    good fortune had come to them to be born German citizens.

    "Among the boys, the influence of this teaching has been such
    that over twenty-two thousand fled from home during the period of
    1900-13 to enlist in the Foreign Legion of the French Army. The
    campaign of the German newspapers in Alsace-Lorraine and, in fact,
    throughout Germany was redoubled in 1911. Parents were warned of
    the horrible treatment accorded to the poor boys who were misguided
    enough to throw away their citizenship and go to be killed in
    Africa under the French flag. The result of this campaign was that
    the Foreign Legion received a larger number of Alsacians in 1912
    than had enlisted during a single year since 1871!

    "Among the girls, the German educational system flattered itself
    that it could completely change the sentiments of a child,
    especially in the boarding-schools. Last year the Empress of
    Germany visited a girls' school near Metz which is one of the best
    German schools in the _Reichsland_. As she was leaving she told
    the children that she wanted to give them something. What did they
    want? The answer was not sweets or cake but that they might be
    taught a _little_ French!

    "The former French provinces have been flooded with garrisons
    and have been treated just as they were forty years ago. The
    insufferable spirit of militarism and the arrogance of the
    Prussian officers in Alsacian towns have served to turn against
    the empire many thousands whom another policy might have won; for
    it must be remembered that by no means _all_ the inhabitants of
    the _Reichsland_ have been by birth and by home training French
    sympathizers. Instead of crushing out the '_souvenir de France_,'
    the Prussian civil and military officials have caused it to be born
    in many a soul which was by nature German.

    "The Prussian has never understood how to win the confidence of
    others. There has been no Rome in his political vision. As for
    conceptions of toleration, of kindness, and of love, they are
    non-existent in Prussian officialdom."

It gives me great satisfaction that the committee of the provinces
has turned to me in an important question concerning the interests of
Alsace-Lorraine. I see in this fact a valuable proof of the increasing
understanding which my good-will and my interest in the development of
your home country has begotten in the minds of its representatives.
I am also pleased to accept this assurance that the people of
Alsace-Lorraine, satisfied for the time being with the existing
political relations, spurn every interference by foreign elements and
look to the empire alone for the protection of their interests.

While I offer you my thanks for this expression of loyal sentiment, I
regret that for the present I cannot fulfil your wishes. I must confine
myself in this matter to expressing the hope that in a not too distant
future our relations may make possible the alleviation of conditions on
the western boundary. This hope will be the sooner realized the more
the people of Alsace-Lorraine are convinced of the inviolability of the
union which binds them to Germany and the more decidedly they exhibit
their resolution to remain forever faithful and immovable in their
loyalty to me and to the empire.



    Every year the Emperor is present at the swearing in of the
    recruits to the guard and to the navy. He has made innumerable
    speeches on such occasions. The present somewhat striking
    pronouncement was delivered at a time when his feeling toward the
    Socialists, who had been guilty of no particular outrage, still
    ran very high. Tolstoi saw in it the worst excesses of militarism
    and issued shortly after the following criticism of the Emperor's

    "This man expresses what all wise men know but carefully conceal.
    He says frankly that men who serve in the army serve him and his
    advantage and must be prepared for his advantage to kill their
    brothers and fathers.

    "He expresses frankly, and with the coarsest of words, all the
    horror of the crime for which the men who enter into military
    service are prepared, all that abyss of degradation which they
    reach when they promise obedience. Like a bold hypnotizer, he
    tests the degree of the hypnotized man's sleep: he puts the glowing
    iron to his body, the body sizzles and smokes, but the hypnotized
    man does not awake.

    "This miserable, ill man, who has lost his mind from the exercise
    of power, with these words offends everything which can be holy for
    a man of our time, and men--Christians, liberals, cultured men of
    our time, all of them are not only not provoked by this insult but
    do not even notice it."

    It is possible that such criticism and the resentment aroused in
    the minds of the law-abiding Socialists led him later to tone down
    his utterances, though on one subsequent occasion, again with the
    Socialists in mind, he made a somewhat similar address (March 28,


You are brought together here from all parts of the empire to fulfil
your military duty, and in this holy place have just sworn fealty to
your Emperor to your last breath. You are still too young to understand
all this. You will, however, little by little, be made familiar with
its significance. Do not imagine it too difficult, and trust in God;
occasionally also say the Lord's Prayer--that has frequently given many
a warrior fresh courage.

Children of my guard, to-day you have become incorporated into my
army; you now stand under my command and have the privilege of
wearing my uniform. Wear it honorably. Think of the famous history of
your Fatherland; remember that the German army must be armed against
the internal as well as the external foe. More and more unbelief and
discontent raise their heads in the Fatherland, and it may come to
pass that you will have to shoot down or stab your own relatives and
brothers. Then seal your loyalty with your heart's blood! And now go to
your homes and fulfil your duties.

    --(According to the _Breslauer Lokalanzeiger_ of December 8.)

    According to the _Neisser Zeitung_, the second paragraph ran as

Recruits! You have now before the consecrated servant of the Lord
and before His altar, sworn fealty to me. You are still too young to
understand the true meaning of what has just been said; but be diligent
now and follow the directions and instructions given you. You have
sworn loyalty to me; that means, children of my guard, that you are
now my soldiers, you have given yourselves up to me, body and soul;
there is for you but one enemy, and that is my enemy. In view of the
present Socialistic agitations it may come to pass that I shall command
you to shoot your own relatives, brothers, yes, parents--which God
forbid--but even then you must follow my command without a murmur.

    Entirely similar, but shorter, is a clipping from the Berlin paper
    _Das Volk_, according to the account of one who heard the speech.

You have sworn to me the oath of loyalty; that means, from now on you
know only one command, and that is my most high command; you have only
one enemy, and that is my enemy! And so I may sometime--which God
forbid--have to bid you to shoot upon your own relatives, yes, brothers
and parents--then remember your oath!


BERLIN, JULY 4, 1893

    The opposition between the Reichstag and the government reached
    a climax when the session which opened in 1886 was dissolved in
    January, 1887, because it refused to vote for the bill fixing
    the army status for the ensuing seven years. The next Reichstag,
    elected in February, voted the bill. In spite of the fact that
    the new arrangement was to have been effective until March, 1894,
    as early as the session of 1890 changes were introduced which
    fixed the peace footing at 468,983 men, exclusive of the one-year
    volunteers. In November, 1892, a new army bill was presented,
    to run for six years, fixing the peace footing at 492,068. All
    infantrymen were to serve two years. In the debates of 1887 it
    was announced that Russia was an ally of Germany. The failure to
    renew the neutrality agreement with that power and the growing
    _rapprochement_ between France and Russia seems to have been most
    in the Emperor's mind in calling for an increase. The increased
    appropriation of 1887 was covered by a tax on spirits, sugar, and
    grain. The new increase was to be met by indirect taxes, mostly on
    beer and brandy. When the Reichstag refused to vote the bill as it
    stood, it was dissolved and a new one called. The new Reichstag,
    which is here addressed, accepted the bill on July 15. As much of
    the opposition had been due to the fear of the less-favored classes
    that the increased cost would fall heavily on them through indirect
    taxes, the Chancellor assured the representatives (as the Emperor
    here indicates) that there would be no tax on beer or brandy nor
    any other necessities of life.

Since you have been called to work in common with the confederated
governments, it is my desire at the beginning of your deliberations to
greet you and bid you welcome.

The draft of the bill concerning the peace footing of the German army,
through which a strengthening of our available force would have been
achieved, was presented to the last Reichstag. To my great regret the
project did not meet with the approval of the representatives of the
people. The conviction, unanimously shared by my corulers, that in
the face of the development of the military arrangements of the other
powers this government could no longer put off such a shaping of its
military status as should guarantee its safety and its future led to
the decision to dissolve the Reichstag and, by the calling of new
representatives to attain the end recognized as necessary. Since the
proposal of this law the political situation of Europe has undergone no
change. To my great satisfaction, the relations of the empire to the
foreign states are altogether and everywhere friendly and free from
any cloud. The organized military force of Germany, however, compares
still more unfavorably with that of our neighbors than it did last
year. Since her geographical position and her historical development
impose upon Germany the duty of taking thought for a proportionately
large standing army, the further development of our defensive strength,
therefore, with regard to the progress of other countries becomes a
pressing necessity. In order to satisfy the duties constitutionally
laid upon me, it seemed to me incontrovertible that I should exercise
every existing means at my command toward the restoration of a
sufficient and effective defense of the honor of the Fatherland.

There will, therefore, be laid before you without delay a new bill
concerning the peace footing of the army. In it the wishes which
were strongly expressed during the discussion of the former bill are
taken account of, and, in accordance with this, demands made upon the
personal capacity and upon the people's ability to pay taxes have, in
so far as this could be done without endangering the end sought, been

The interest of the realm demands, especially in looking forward to the
impending expiration of the seven-year arrangement next spring, that
the bill should be decided upon with all possible despatch, in order
that this year's recruiting can be undertaken on the new basis. A delay
in carrying out this proposal would be felt for more than twenty years,
to the detriment of our defensive strength.

To make it possible for you to give your undivided attention to the
discussion of the bill, the confederated governments will refrain from
burdening the session with other important matters.

I and my honored corulers are still of the opinion that the means
necessary for the reorganization of our military equipment can be
raised properly, and without overburdening the people, in the manner
brought forward last autumn in the draft of the proposed taxation
bill. Nevertheless, the question of making good the deficit is still
the object of continued discussions. I expect that a proposal will be
set before you by the beginning of the next winter session in which is
expressed, even more strongly than in the former bill, the principle
that the providing of the necessary means must be carried out with the
utmost regard for the individual's ability to pay and with as little
draft as possible upon our power of levying taxes. Until the expiration
of the present official year the contributions from the various states
may be drawn upon to cover the excess.

Honored Sirs, we have succeeded in the difficult task of welding the
German race into a strong union. The nation honors those who have given
their possessions and their blood for this work and who have brought
the Fatherland to political and industrial prosperity--a prosperity
which is the pride and the pleasure of their contemporaries and which,
if they build in the same spirit as their fathers, will guarantee to
the generations to come the greatness and the happiness of the empire.
To protect the glorious acquisitions with which God has blessed us in
our struggle for independence is our most sacred duty. We can, however,
only fulfil such a duty toward the Fatherland by making ourselves
sufficiently strong in military power to defend ourselves, so that we
may remain a reliable guarantor of the peace of Europe. I trust that
your patriotic, self-sacrificing assistance in the pursuance of this
aim will not fail me and my honored corulers.

    The Emperor followed the formal address from the throne with the

And now, gentlemen, go forth. May our ancient God look down upon you
and bestow upon you His blessing to the end that you may bring to
successful issue an honorable work for the welfare of our Fatherland!



    On the 3d of September the Emperor, accompanied by the Crown Prince
    of Italy, paid a visit to Metz. To Burgomaster Halm's speech of
    welcome the Emperor replied as follows:

It is with a heart deeply stirred that I enter the city of Metz, and if
I could not come last year, as I wished,[7] I see, nevertheless, that
the reason for my remaining away has been rightly understood.

[7] The Emperor came to Metz ordinarily to review the Eighth and
    Sixteenth Army Corps. Because of the cholera scare, the imperial
    manoeuvres had not taken place in the previous year, 1892. The
    Emperor, who was anxious to conciliate his subjects, had taken up a
    domain in Urville.

I rejoice to see the monument to my late grandfather at length finished
and to be able to allow my troops to pass before it. Metz and my army
corps are a corner-stone in the military might of Germany, destined to
protect the peace of Germany--yes, of all Europe--and it is my firm
purpose to maintain this peace.

I thank the city of Metz for its festive welcome, and I pray you
that my thanks be made known to the citizens through an official
announcement. If I have removed my headquarters to Urville it is
because as a landholder in Lorraine I could not do otherwise, since
my subjects in this province wish to have me there. In token of my
imperial favor I extend to the burgomaster a golden chain of office
which the burgomasters of Metz shall be entitled to wear from this time
forth. It gives me especial pleasure, however, to be able to bestow
this chain upon the present burgomaster.



    Through a reorganization of the army which was to be made effective
    in the next legislative session, a large number of partial bodies
    of troops were created which were later to be increased to bring
    up the peace footing of the army from 538 whole and 173 half
    battalions to 624 whole battalions. Every two of these constitute
    a regiment and every two regiments a brigade. On the anniversary
    of the battle of Leipzig the Emperor, in the presence of a large
    number of princes, including the young King of Servia, turned
    over flags to these troops. His statement that the only pillar
    upon which the empire rested was the army was strongly resented
    by many of his loyal subjects of the empire who happened to be
    merely peaceful merchants or farmers or laborers. The Emperor was
    doubtless provoked into making the statement from the fact that
    some of his legislative policies had met with determined opposition
    on the part of representatives of the people. This he has always
    regarded as disloyalty and as boding disaster to the empire. Since
    the army's tradition for loyalty to the imperial war lord renders
    opposition here impossible, he saw in it the only salvation of the

In order that they may serve as a shining symbol of glory for the
troops, we have had the blessing of Heaven called down upon the ensigns
which I have bestowed upon every fourth battalion of my regiments, and
I now turn them over to the regimental commanders and to the regiments
themselves. This inspiring day is one whose memories move the world
and which marks an epoch in our German history. I first salute the
mausoleum of him[8] whose birthday was once wont to fill the entire
German Fatherland with jubilation, the mausoleum of him to whom it was
granted to win glorious victories under the eyes of the great, heroic
Emperor, his father, and to cover the flags which were consecrated
in 1861 with glory. They were nailed to their staffs in the rooms
in which the history of Brandenburg and Prussia is immortalized in
paintings. The monuments of the rulers and of the generals who created
the glory of Prussia have looked down upon them. These flags have now
been brought before the monument of the Prussian King who focussed
the eyes of the world upon them in years of fierce conflict and whose
last breath was a wish of blessing for his army. In the year 1861,
when my grandfather undertook the reorganization of his arms, he was
misunderstood by many and attacked by even more; nevertheless, the
future gave him his splendid justification. Just as at that time, so
now, too, distrust and discord are rife among the people. The only
pillar on which the empire rested was the army. So is it to-day! The
flags which are assembled here are destined for entire bodies of
troops, and I hope that the half battalions to which they are to-day
delivered will soon stand as entire battalions in the army of the

[8] Emperor Frederick III.

But you, gentlemen, now take over these ensigns and with them the
obligation of maintaining the tradition of devotion, of discipline
unto death, of unconditional obedience toward the war lord against
all inward and outward enemies. Even as heretofore, may the blessing
of the Most High rest upon our army, and may the watchful eyes of our
ancestors look down upon and protect Prussia's army and her flags! With
God for King and Fatherland!



    It is part of the Emperor's duty to administer the oath every
    year to the recruits for the navy as well as to the recruits for
    the guard. He is inclined to talk to them usually in very simple
    language, as here, for instance. Indeed, though they are usually
    twenty years of age, he often addresses them as the "children of my

The oath is holy, and holy is the place in which you swear it. The
altar and the crucifix bear witness to this; it means that we Germans
are Christians, that we at all times first give the glory to God in
every affair that we undertake, especially in the highest--that of
strengthening the defense of the Fatherland. You wear the uniform of
the Emperor; you are thereby preferred over other men, and take your
rank equally with your comrades of the army and navy; you receive
a special place and assume obligations. By many you will be envied
because of the uniform which you wear; hold it in honor, and do not
besmirch it; this you will accomplish best when you think of your
oath--you especially, you people of the sea, who so often have the
opportunity in your various journeyings upon the water to learn to know
the almighty power of God!

Wherein lies the secret of the fact that we have often overcome our
adversary with lesser numbers? In discipline. What is discipline?
Single-hearted co-operation, single-hearted obedience. That our ancient
forebears already clung to this ideal a single example will show: On
one occasion they were marching to war against the Romans. They had
climbed over the mountain and found themselves suddenly face to face
with the huge masses of the army. Then they realized what a difficult
moment was before them. They first prayed, giving God the glory, and
then, bound together with chains, side by side, they fell upon the
enemies and conquered them. To-day we no longer need the actual chains;
we have a powerful religion and our oath. Remain true to it, and think
of it, whether you are within the country or without. Hold your colors
high, the black, white, and red which here stand before you, and think
of your oath, think of your Emperor.


KIEL, MARCH 26, 1895

    The Emperor, as will be plain, took much satisfaction in the
    development of his navy and was to make innumerable addresses on
    these occasions. The present is a fair type of a number of the
    shorter speeches. Very soon they were to become occasions in which
    he was to broach the idea of the greater navy. The present address
    will serve to illustrate the spirit he was hoping to instil into
    this branch of the service.

As a testimony to the industry of the Fatherland, after the diligent
labors of the imperial dockyards, this vessel now stands before us
ready to be given over to its element. Thou shalt now be enrolled in
the German navy. Thou shalt serve in the protection of the Fatherland
to bring defiance and annihilation to the enemy. The names of the
ships which belong to the same class are taken from the old Germanic
sagas. Therefore thou also shalt hark back to the ancient time of our
ancestors, to the powerful divinity who was worshipped and feared by
all our German seafaring forefathers and whose mighty realm stretched
from the north even unto the south pole, in whose province the northern
battles were fought, and whence death and destruction were brought
into the land of the enemy. Thou shalt bear the name of this great and
mighty god. Mayst thou prove thyself worthy of it! So do I christen
thee with the name of _Ægir_.



    Historians of modern Germany have discussed and explained in
    various ways the causes of the retirement of Bismarck, the "Iron
    Chancellor." From the moment he became "Minister President and
    Minister of Foreign Affairs," in 1862, his hand was the hand that
    guided German policy, and his was the genius that presided over
    and shaped the unification of Germany and the building of the
    empire. It has been truly said that the biography of Bismarck is
    the history of German union. He had been born in Brandenburg and
    spent his life in the service of the Prussian Kings. It was he who
    in the dark days preceding the victories of the sixties had given
    William I heart and had prevented him from giving up his task. It
    was, therefore, a great shock to the German world to learn that,
    two years after the accession of William II, the great founder of
    German unity had been forced into retirement. There had been rumors
    of previous disagreements. The German Chancellor is responsible
    not to the Reichstag but solely to the Emperor; he takes the
    responsibility of shaping the imperial policy. It was said that
    Bismarck resented certain interference with his authority in his
    own cabinet. It is certain that he looked with disfavor on the
    Emperor's policy with regard to labor legislation. With regard to
    the attitude toward Russia there was likewise disagreement, and
    Bismarck opposed the Emperor's visit to Constantinople. But aside
    from these questions of policy, there were deep psychological
    incompatibilities. Crabbed age and romantic youth could not live
    together. Furthermore, the Emperor wished to take the credit for
    initiating and carrying through his own policies. He was not
    content to be a shadow king. Bismarck, after nearly forty years of
    service, was not willing to be a puppet chancellor. He insisted
    on the form of cabinet government decreed in 1852. The Emperor's
    disposition of mind may be gathered from the following extracts
    from a speech delivered shortly before Bismarck's retirement, and
    it should be remembered that at this time Bismarck was far from
    being an enthusiastic supporter of certain measures then taking
    shape in the mind of William II. On the 5th of March, 1890, the
    Emperor announced to the Brandenburgers: "All those who wish to
    help me in this work I bid heartily welcome, whoever they may be;
    but all those (whoever they may be) who oppose me in this work I
    shall smash to pieces" (_zerschmettern_). Bismarck was forced to
    offer his resignation two weeks later. Besides his ducal title, he
    was given the honorary title of general of cavalry, with the rank
    of field-marshal. Because of his opposition, he was treated in the
    following years with extreme coolness and occasionally as an enemy.
    The German ambassador at Vienna was instructed from Berlin, on
    the occasion of the marriage of Bismarck's son, not to accept an
    invitation to the wedding. Foreign ambassadors were informed that
    for the Emperor there were two Bismarcks: the former responsible
    servant and the present irresponsible subject. The honors given him
    were not generally honors due a great ex-chancellor, but honors
    due a military officer. "Living," said Bismarck, "they give me the
    honors of the dead." On this, his eightieth birthday, the Reichstag
    voted down the proposal that they send him their congratulations.
    The Emperor, with an exclusively military suite, however, paid him
    this visit and presented him with a sword engraved with his arms
    and with the arms of the conquered provinces, Alsace-Lorraine. In
    all probability, Bismarck felt the lack of mention of his services
    as Chancellor; his entirely diplomatic reply printed below would
    seem to indicate this.


Our whole Fatherland decks itself out to celebrate your birthday.
This day belongs to the army. Its first duty is to do honor to its
comrades, to its old officers, whose efficiency made it possible for
it to carry through the mighty deeds which found their reward in the
crowning of a regenerated Fatherland.

The military host which stands gathered here is a symbol of the whole
army, especially this regiment which has the honor of calling your
Highness its commander, and especially that standard which reminds us
of the fame of Brandenburg and Prussia, which dates from the time of
the Great Elector and is consecrated by the blood shed at Mars-la-Tour.
Your Highness will see in spirit, behind this gathering of troops, the
collected army of the entire German race in battle array to celebrate
this day with us.

In sight of this host, I come now to present to your Highness my gift.
I could find no better token than a sword, this noblest weapon of the
Germans; a symbol of that instrument which your Highness with my late
grandfather helped to shape, to sharpen, and also to wield; the symbol
of that great, powerful period of building whose mortar was blood and
iron; that weapon which is never dismayed and which, when necessary,
in the hands of kings and princes will defend against internal foes
that unity of the Fatherland which it had once conquered from the
foes without. May your Highness be good enough to notice the linking
of your arms with those of Alsace-Lorraine here engraved and feel
again all that history which found its conclusion in the events of
twenty-five years ago!

But we comrades call out: His Highness, Prince Bismarck, Duke of
Lauenburg--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!

    Bismarck replied with more pith:

Your Majesty will allow me to lay my humblest thanks at your feet. My
military position with regard to your Majesty does not permit me to
further express my feelings to your Majesty. I thank your Majesty.


KIEL, JUNE 21, 1895

    In furthering Germany's economic and industrial development, the
    building of canals has served an important function in reducing
    the cost of transportation and in making possible competition with
    other nations. Although the Emperor William Canal was an idea of
    Bismarck's, his name is not here mentioned. Emperor William II
    has taken a very lively interest in this development of inland
    waterways and has rendered a great service to the industrial
    development of his country in this regard.

In memory of Emperor William the Great, I baptize the canal "Emperor
William Canal."

    The Emperor then accompanied his three hammer strokes with the
    following words: "In the name of the Triune God, to the honor of
    Emperor William, to the blessing of Germany, and to the welfare of
    the people!"

    He proposed this toast at the banquet:

I behold with pleasure and with pride this brilliant and festive
gathering, and in the name of my honored colleagues I bid you all, the
guests of the empire, most heartily welcome. We wish to express our
inmost thanks for the interest you have taken in the completion of a
work which, begun in peace and accomplished in peace, is to-day given
over to general trade.

It is not only in our own day that the idea first existed of joining
the North and Baltic Seas by a great canal; far back in the Middle Ages
we find drafts and plans for the working out of this undertaking. In
the past century the Eider Canal was built, which, while it affords a
wonderful example of the ability of that day, still, as it was intended
only for the passage of the smaller craft, could not satisfy the
increased demands of the present day. It remained for the newly founded
German Empire to find a satisfactory solution for this great problem.

It was my immortal grandfather, his Majesty, Emperor William the
Great, who, thoroughly appreciating the significance of the canal for
increasing the national welfare and strengthening our defense, devoted
his unflagging interest to the plan for the building of an effective
waterway between the North and the Baltic Seas and for overcoming the
many obstacles which stood in the way of its accomplishment. Joyfully
and confidently the affiliated rulers of the empire, as well as the
Reichstag, followed the imperial initiative, and for eight years the
work was industriously carried on which, as it approached completion,
aroused in ever-increasing measure the public interest. What technic on
the basis of its great development has been able to accomplish, what
was possible through pride and joy in the work, what finally could be
done in promoting the welfare of the numberless workers engaged in the
task, in accordance with the principles of the humane social politics
of the empire, has been accomplished in this undertaking. Therefore the
Fatherland dare rejoice with me and my noble colleagues in the success
of this enterprise.

However, we have worked not only for our own interests. In accordance
with the great cultural mission of the German people, we open the locks
of the canal to the peaceful trading of the nations with each other,
and it will give us great satisfaction if its increasing use shall
prove not only that the intentions by which we were led are understood
but that they are becoming fruitful in increasing the welfare of the

The interest in our celebration on the part of the powers whose
representatives we see among us, and whose magnificent ships we have
to-day admired, I greet with greater joy the more I have the right to
see in it the complete justification of our efforts directed toward
the righteous maintenance of peace. Germany will also place the work
inaugurated to-day in the service of peace and will consider herself
fortunate if the Emperor William Canal strengthens and promotes in this
service for all time our friendly relations with the other powers.

I empty my glass to the friendly sovereigns and powers. Hurrah! Hurrah!



JUNE 16, 1896--MARCH 22, 1905


BERLIN, JUNE 16, 1896

    It is difficult to fix any definite date at which any new movement
    in politics may be said to have begun. Toward the close of the
    year 1894 there appear unmistakable signs of a new dispensation.
    In this year Caprivi, Bismarck's successor as Chancellor, retired
    in favor of Prince Hohenlohe. The latter appears in his new office
    for the first time in the session of the Reichstag which opened
    December 5, 1894. In that session the insufficient protection of
    Germans residing in foreign lands was repeatedly insisted upon, and
    the colonizing spirit and the agitation for a very considerable
    increase in the navy began to make themselves felt. The building
    of three new cruisers was authorized, but the plan to erect a
    dry dock at Kiel was rejected. The year 1895 was to be crowded
    with festivals celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversaries of
    the victories of the Franco-Prussian War, and there resulted a
    consequent impetus to what might be called nascent imperialism.
    This was further stimulated by outward events. In 1895 France,
    Germany, and Russia intervened between Japan and China, then at
    war. In 1897 Germany seized and then leased Kiaochow from China
    for ninety-nine years and intervened in the war between Greece and
    Turkey on behalf of the Turks. She began, therefore, to take a more
    prominent part in world politics and definitely entered upon her
    policy of expansion. The German people felt that this was rendered
    necessary by the fact that Germany had become a great industrial
    and exporting nation, whose interests demanded insistence on the
    "open-door" policy. Her rapidly increasing population (the annual
    increase was between 800,000 and 900,000) also, we are told, made
    necessary the creation of new colonies to take care of surplus
    population and to provide sustenance for those at home who were
    being drawn off into industrial pursuits.

    It should be remembered in this connection, however, that
    emigration from Germany is very far from being on the increase. It
    has diminished astonishingly since 1880. In the decade from 1880
    to 1890 the annual emigration averaged about 135,000, and in 1881
    it reached its highest point, 220,000. In the decade from 1900 to
    1910 it never in any one year ran over 37,000 and averaged about
    27,000--in other words, it had declined, in spite of the increase
    in population and in the number of colonies, to one fifth of its
    former proportions. The figures have only a relative significance.
    The annual emigration from Belgium, for instance, which has little
    more than one tenth the population of Germany, was considerably
    higher, averaging 35,000 annually for the years from 1906 to 1910.
    The annual emigration from the United Kingdom to places outside
    of Europe in the same period was approximately 532,000 annually.
    As, therefore, German emigration has in the last quarter century
    steadily declined, it may be safely inferred that the problem of
    finding colonies for her surplus population is not now, at least, a
    more pressing one for Germany than it was twenty-five years ago.

    A conscientious American student of contemporary politics has said
    quite justly that "the most vital and burning problem in the world
    to-day" is the problem of Germany's _Weltpolitik_. It is not the
    purpose of this volume to enter into questions of controversy.
    He who wishes, however, to understand Germany's position and
    the Emperor's position toward the world to-day must consider
    carefully not only the problem itself but some of its practical
    implications. In one of his bursts of enthusiasm the Emperor will
    tell us later[9] that this policy implies that no question in the
    world--no question of international politics, in other words--is to
    be decided without Germany. This would mean, strictly interpreted,
    that no transfer or change of status in colonial possessions--Cuba
    or the Philippines, for instance--no international canal, like
    Panama, could be made without her sanction. And there are those in
    Germany, like Doctor Liman, who believe that this doctrine should
    have been more rigidly maintained than had hitherto been the case.
    _A priori_, Germany is, of course, as much entitled to the right
    to pursue such a policy as any other power. Ethically, however--if
    ethics have any place in the discussion--it must be the result
    which justifies such a policy: not the results merely to the nation
    pursuing the policy but the results also to the nation or tribe at
    whose expense the policy is pursued. In the utilitarian phrase, it
    must redound to the greater good of the greater number.

    [9] "Germany's greatness makes it impossible for her to do without
        the ocean--but the ocean also proves that even in the distance,
        and on its farther side, without Germany and the German Emperor
        no great decision dare henceforth be taken." (July 3, 1900.)

    A dispassionate consideration of Prussia's treatment of her
    dependencies must convince any except the most partisan that her
    efforts here have been far less successful than those of most other
    nations, if they are not to be qualified as utter and absolute
    failures. Chancellor Caprivi had said quite justly that the worst
    blow an enemy could give him would be to force more territories in
    Africa upon him. Nevertheless, Germany has since Caprivi's time
    and at imminent risk of war acquired further African possessions.
    The attempt to colonize Africa, begun, as we have seen, by the
    Great Elector, was Germany's first venture in this field. Yet at no
    time did the Germans seem to get on well with the blacks. In the
    Emperor's speeches to the Reichstag he has spoken of his desire
    to introduce Christian customs and Christian morality among the
    negroes. Yet his attempts here were hardly successful. The Herreros
    in Southwest Africa revolted and massacred German colonists,
    sparing the Boers and English who had come before the German
    occupation. Doctor Gibbons tells us that the suppression of this
    rebellion took more than a year and cost Germany an appalling sum
    of money and many lives. But it cost the natives more. Two thirds
    of the nation of the Herreros were massacred, and, while only six
    or seven thousand were in arms, the German official report states
    that forty thousand were killed. The Germans confiscated all the
    lands of the natives. In 1906, after twenty-one years of German
    rule, there were in Southwest Africa sixteen thousand prisoners of
    war out of a total native population of thirty-one thousand. All
    the natives lived in concentration camps and were forced to work
    for the government. It may be conceded that Germany's problem here
    was a difficult one; it must also be recognized that her policy had
    been neither of advantage to the natives nor to Germany herself.

    In other cases, where the problem would seem to have been simpler,
    the results have likewise been disastrous. It is not our purpose
    to give the reasons but to state the facts. After one hundred
    and twenty-five years of incorporation into Prussia the Poles
    of East Prussia have in large part not been amalgamated and are
    still the victims of discriminatory legislation. In judging such a
    policy it is not merely a question as to whether Alsace-Lorraine,
    for instance, did or did not once belong to Germany. Morally it
    is difficult to concede to any nation the right to govern any
    population which it makes permanently unhappy. After forty-four
    years the problem of Alsace-Lorraine seemed to be very little
    nearer a solution than it was at its inception. It is a mistake
    to believe that the discontent was due principally to the fact
    that the inhabitants must transfer their allegiance from France to
    Germany. The discontent was due to the empire's refusal to give the
    population rights and status compatible with their self-respect
    as enlightened subjects of a twentieth-century government. Men of
    German as well as of French descent, and even German emigrants who
    were induced to settle in the province since 1870, took part in the
    opposition. In a recent haphazard list of the "real leaders" of
    Alsace-Lorraine, we find the following six names: Wetterlé, Preiss,
    Blumenthal, Weber, Bucher, and Theodor. Of these the last five,
    at least, are wholly or in part of German descent. Yet the most
    serious demonstration in Metz since its annexation took place in
    June, 1910. On July 25 of that same year, for the first time since
    the University of Strasburg had been re-established by the Germans,
    a professor was hissed out of his lecture-room; and, as we have
    seen, in spite of an energetic propaganda by German newspapers, in
    1912 more Alsacians enlisted in the French Foreign Legion than in
    any single year since 1871. The situation in that province has been
    already discussed in connection with the Emperor's speech of March
    14, 1891. Quite evidently, the problem there was hardly on the
    way to successful solution in August, 1914. Of course, Germany's
    success in colonizing is not the only question to be considered
    with regard to her _Weltpolitik_. It is, however, an essential

    As will be evident from subsequent addresses, it was the Emperor
    who everywhere gave the initial impulse. Whether or not he involved
    himself in contradictions here, the student must decide. To
    certain of his subjects he appeared to be doing so, and it was
    for this reason that one of his hostile critics, Doctor Liman,
    tells us in bitterness that German politics of the last twenty
    years is "a fantastic mixture of tearful longing for peace and
    an inflated desire for prestige." ("Der Kaiser," p. 317.) The
    present empire had been proclaimed on the 18th of January, 1871,
    and the anniversary marked the crowning celebration of the year.
    In his speech the Emperor announces that "The German Empire has
    become a world-empire." This may be said to provide the key to his
    subsequent policy and to mark the dawning of a new era. The address
    was delivered at a dinner held in the Royal Palace.

The present day, like the entire year in all its festivities, is
a day of grateful retrospect. It is a continued high festival of
gratitude for and in commemoration of the great departed Emperor. A
blessing rests upon the present day, and over it hovers the spirit
of him who lies in Charlottenburg,[10] and of him who sleeps in the
Friedenskirche.[11] What our fathers had hoped and what German youth
in her dreams had sung and desired it was granted to them, the two
Emperors, to achieve; working with the princes, it was granted to them
to reconquer and re-establish the German Empire. We are privileged
gratefully to enjoy its advantages; we have a right to rejoice on
the present day. Nevertheless, it is our earnest duty to maintain
what the great lords have won for us. The German Empire has become a
world-empire. Everywhere in distant quarters of the earth thousands of
our countrymen are living. German guardians, German science, German
industry are going across the sea. The value of what Germany has upon
the seas amounts to thousands of millions. It is your earnest duty,
gentlemen, to help to bind this greater German Empire firmly to our
ancestral home. The vow which I made you to-day can become truth only
if you are animated by a united patriotic spirit and grant me your
fullest support. It is my wish that, standing in closest union, you
help me to do my duty not only to my countrymen in a narrower sense
but also to the many thousands of countrymen in foreign lands. This
means that I may be able to protect them if I must. It is with this
wish, and deeply conscious of the injunction which is issued to us
all--"What you have inherited from your fathers, conquer it in order
that you may possess it"--that I raise my glass to our beloved German
Fatherland and call out: Long live the German Empire!--once again, may
it live!--and a third time, long live the Empire!

[10] Emperor William I.

[11] Emperor Frederick III.



    On the occasion of administering the oath to the naval recruits at
    Wilhelmshaven the Emperor delivered the following address:

In the sight of God and of His servants you have sworn to me the oath
of allegiance, and I expect from you that you will become good and
sturdy sailors. Keep to what you have sworn, for "one man, one word."
The soldiers of the army frequently have the occasion to show what
they have learned and what they are capable of under the eyes of their
superiors. This is not true in the navy, for many of you will be for
years in foreign waters. But you must not think that on that account my
eyes have been turned away from you.

In relation to other navies our own navy is still small, is in the
budding stage; but through our discipline we must become strong and
by it compensate for all that we lack in material strength. What is
discipline? Nothing but the unconditional subjection of our own will
to a higher will. Even if every one intends to do good, he must none
the less subordinate his intention to the good of the whole. Only
by holding together can we create a firm body that will be able to
accomplish something complete and great.



    The visit which the Czar had paid Emperor William at Breslau
    the year before (September 5, 1896) had led to unfortunate
    consequences. The Czar, in his answer to the wishes of the Emperor
    that the two empires might draw more closely together, had
    announced, according to the official report, that he was animated
    by the same traditional sentiments as his Majesty, Emperor William
    II. Certain important papers printed a reading which made it appear
    that the Czar had said that he shared the same feelings which had
    moved his father (who was notoriously anti-German). The State
    Secretary, Von Marschall, was drawn into an ugly suit as a result.
    It was stated that the Foreign Office was involved. Although this
    was not true, it left a decidedly bad impression, and several
    officials resigned.

    On the occasion of the visit of the German Emperor and Empress to
    St. Petersburg they were greeted by a most friendly address of
    welcome from the Czar, and Emperor William II was made an admiral
    of the Russian fleet. On this occasion he offered the following
    toast to the Russian Emperor and Empress:

In the name of her Majesty, the Empress, and in my own, I thank your
Majesty warmly for the hearty and magnificent reception which you have
given us and for the gracious words with which your Majesty has so
lovingly bid us welcome. At the same time, with deep feeling I would
like to lay at the feet of your Majesty my grateful acknowledgment
for the renewed and unexpected distinction which your Majesty has
conferred upon me in giving me a place in your glorious fleet. This
is a particular honor, which I appreciate at its full significance
and which is also a distinction conferred very particularly upon my
navy. In my appointment as a Russian admiral I see not only an honor
conferred upon my person but also a new evidence for the perpetuation
of the close relationship, traditional and unshakable, which exists
between our two empires. The unalterable decision of your Majesty to
preserve now and hereafter peace for your people finds in me also a
joyful echo, and wandering together in the same way we two shall strive
in concert, under the blessing of this peace, to guide the cultural
development of our peoples. My whole people is behind me, I know, as
I confidently lay this renewed pledge in the hands of your Majesty--I
shall bestow upon your Majesty my most powerful support and stand at
your side with all my heart in this great work of preserving the peace
for the nations and in directing my strength against any one who might
attempt to disturb or break this peace. I drink to the health of their
Majesties, the Emperor and the Empress! [These last words the Emperor
spoke in Russian.]



    On this date the Emperor reviewed the great parade of the Eighth
    Army Corps, under the leadership of the commanding general, the
    Grand Duke of Baden. At the dinner after the review the Emperor
    offered the following toast. The address illustrates what Doctor
    Liman calls the romanticism of the Emperor. He is easily impressed
    by his surroundings and speaks with particular animation and fervor
    on the occasions (and they are frequent) in which the memories of
    his ancestors are brought back to him:

A review in the Rhine country, what an entrancing and what a beautiful
picture! But a review on the shores of the River Rhine itself, and in
sight of the old historic city of Coblentz--how this appeals to our
hearts! The sight of the soldierly sons of the Rhine country, under the
command of your Royal Highness, has moved me to deep joy. But it moves
me with deep sadness, likewise, for the place on which we stand and the
city in which we tarry is a witness to a great time and reminds us of
great names and figures.

We, therefore, do not wish to forget that the time[12] which Emperor
William the Great spent in Coblentz was of deepest significance,
especially for us in the army. Here the work which he was called upon
to carry through came to maturity; here it was granted him in quiet
retirement to work out the organization of his army, which was often
attacked with animosity and often misunderstood but which has so
magnificently justified itself. His nation under arms has proved in
three victorious wars that he was right.

[12] 1850-7.

And now let us turn from our glance into the past to the present day.
The splendid corps which I took from the hands of a general [Vogel von
Falckenstein] whose name spelled bravery, whose conduct, chivalry,
and whose life, fidelity on the battle-field and in peace, I have now
given over to you, the grandson of the great Emperor, the son[13]
of the lofty Princess who would not be deprived of the pleasure of
appearing here to-day and, in the spirit of her great departed mother,
of celebrating and tarrying for a while with us in memories.

[13] The hereditary Grand Duke of Baden at this time was Frederick
     William, born July 9, 1857, son of the Grand Duke Frederick I and
     the Grand Duchess Louise-Marie, Princess of Prussia. The Grand
     Duchess Louise-Marie was the daughter of Emperor William I. The
     hereditary Grand Duke, who since the death of his father, in 1907,
     has been reigning Grand Duke of Baden, is therefore a grandson
     of William I and first cousin of the present Emperor, which will
     explain the somewhat unusual familiarity of the Emperor's address.

The corps has been honored by the fact that his Royal Highness, the
Duke of Cambridge, who was for a long time the highest in command of
the brave British army, has decided to appear here and to lead before
me his gallant historic regiment. I express my hearty thanks to your
Royal Highness. The corps, is indeed, highly fortunate in this. We
are privileged to greet in the noble person of your Royal Highness an
associate, a contemporary of our departed great Emperor, about whom
I know particularly that he always spoke with deepest respect and
greatest friendship of your Royal Highness, and that he always praised
your Royal Highness's military achievements.

My dear Fritz [turning to his Royal Highness, the hereditary Grand
Duke], to-day's parade does you and the corps great honor in every
respect, and we can say with a clear conscience that the sons of the
Rhineland who have marched by to-day will do their duty as completely,
and that they are as well trained and as brave as they were in the time
of the great Emperor. _It is our duty to maintain, in all its parts,
the army, the work of the great Emperor, against every influence and to
defend it against every opposition from without_, and I hope that every
general will be as faithful and as upright as you are, and that he will
strive to achieve this aim in his field with as good results as you
have done.

With this hope I raise my glass and drink to the health of the Eighth
Army Corps and its commanding general. The Eighth Army Corps! Hurrah!
Hurrah! Hurrah!



    On this day the Emperor reviewed the Eleventh Army Corps, which was
    under the command of General von Wittich, in the presence of the
    Empress and of the King and Queen of Italy. At the banquet which
    followed in the Castle of Homburg, the Emperor offered this toast:


I am happy to be able to express to you before our royal and princely
guests and to the whole army corps my heartiest congratulations on
this day. I am pleased to be able to say that the present day in its
achievements does not suffer in the least by comparison with the day
when, many years ago,[14] the corps defiled before my late grandfather,
my dear father, and the late Grand Duke. I thank his Royal Highness,
the Grand Duke, for the splendid division which he has led, and I am
pleased to see him at the head of the magnificent troops which have
done such great things under his father.

[14] September 25, 1883.

A great honor has been conferred upon the corps through the fact
that riding at the head of one of his regiments [13th Hessian Hussar
Regiment] his Majesty, King Humbert of Italy, has led it before us.

Your Majesty! My army thanks your Majesty whole-heartedly for the great
honor which has been conferred upon it. Not only my army but also the
whole German Fatherland greets in the person of your Majesty the lofty
prince, the close friend of my departed father, the faithful ally,
whose coming here shows again to us and to the world that the bond of
the triple alliance stands firm and inviolate, the triple alliance
which was founded in the interest of peace and which, as time goes on,
strikes deeper and firmer root in the consciousness of the peoples, in
order finally to bring forth greater fruit.

In deepest gratitude I bid the great Queen welcome in the name of
my people. We rejoice that she has not disdained to come here,
leaving behind her her repose and her activities dedicated to art and
literature, and that she should have graced with her fair presence this
camp of our soldiers. Her Majesty is particularly dear and precious to
us Germans, because she is like the image of the great constellation to
which her people and Fatherland look up with confidence; because the
artist, the wise man, the musician, and the student always have free
access to her, and because under the protection of her Majesty so many
a German can fulfil his life devoted to learning and so many an invalid
can go in search of his health to the beautiful sunny south.

With a whole heart I bid you both welcome, and call out with my
Eleventh Corps: Their Majesties, the King and Queen of Italy!--Hurrah!
Hurrah! Hurrah!



    On this occasion sixty-three new flags were dedicated to the newly
    formed regiments of the guard, of the First to the Eleventh and of
    the Fifteenth to the Seventeenth Army Corps. The Emperor and people
    celebrate this anniversary of the battle of Leipzig, 1813, with
    particularly patriotic demonstrations, and he almost invariably
    makes it the occasion for a military address. After the religious
    ceremony the Emperor addressed the following words to his troops:

The flags which have just now been consecrated before the altar of
God and which have received His blessing I now turn over to the new
regiments which spring from their old and proved predecessors in
accordance with the custom of our army, which forever renews itself and
its youth out of the ranks of its older and proved regiments. I do this
in a hallowed place, before the statue of the great King and before
the windows of the great Emperor. If the site is holy, so too is the
day. It is the anniversary of the great victory after which the German
people for the first time dared look forward in prospect to the dawn of
coming union and the future greatness which was conditioned thereby.
The day on which, for everlasting memory, the October fires leap from
Germany's hills is the birthday of the heroic first German Crown Prince
and of the second German Emperor.[15]

[15] Frederick III.

Out of the old and proved regiments which he led to battle and victory
the shoots have been taken for these new ones to which I now turn over
their field insignia. May Almighty God, who has ever been so faithful
and well intentioned to our Prussia and to the whole German Fatherland,
help always to maintain the vows of the thousands of German youths who
shall stream from the circles of the people to these new flags and who
before them shall swear their oath of allegiance!

I hope that in these regiments the qualities of the great Emperor will
live on--the absolutely unselfish devotion to the whole, the unreserved
sacrifice of one's own capacity, bodily as well as spiritual, for
the honor of the army and for the safety of the beloved Fatherland.
Then, I am convinced, will the foundations remain firm and intact in
these new regiments, the foundations upon which the discipline of our
army rests--bravery, sense of honor, and absolute and unconditional

This is my wish for the new regiments.



    After the administering of the oath to the recruits of the
    garrisons of Berlin, Charlottenburg, and Spandau by the
    representatives of the Evangelical and the Catholic churches, the
    Emperor took the occasion to deliver the following admonition:

To-day I greet you as soldiers of my army, as grenadiers of my guard.
With the oath to the flag you have sworn allegiance as German men,
and even before the altar of God, under the open skies, and upon His
crucifix, as good Christians must. He who is not a good Christian is
not a brave man and no Prussian soldier; and he cannot fulfil under any
circumstances what is demanded of a soldier in the Prussian army.

Your duty is not easy; it demands of you self-control and
self-abnegation, the two highest qualities of a Christian, and in
addition unconditional obedience and subordination to the will of those
who are appointed above you.

But you have examples before you out of the history of the German army.
Thousands before your time have sworn their oath and kept it. And
because they did keep it our Fatherland has become great and our army
victorious and unconquerable. Because they kept their oath, their flags
stand before you, garlanded with honor and covered with the tokens of
glory, and wherever they are shown, heads are uncovered and regiments
present arms.

In the time of your service temptation will surely draw near to many of
you. If it does approach, either with regard to your personal conduct
or with regard to your relationship as a soldier, turn it from you with
the thought of the past of your regiments; turn it from you with the
thought of your uniform, which is the uniform of your King. Whoever
offends against the uniform of the King lays himself open to the most
grievous punishments. Wear your uniform in such wise that you will
compel respect from the world and from those who oppose you.

My glorious ancestors look down upon you from the vaulted heavens. The
monuments of the Kings look down upon you and, above all, the statue of
the great Emperor. When you are discharging your service remember the
grievous times through which our Fatherland had to pass; remember them
when your labor seems heavy and bitter. Stand firm in your inviolable
faith and trust in God who never forsakes us. Then will my army and
especially my guard be equal to its task in all times, whether in peace
or war.

It is now your task to stand faithfully by me and to defend our highest
possessions, whether against enemies from without or from within, and
to obey when I command and never to forsake me.


DECEMBER 15, 1897

    In accordance with her general colonial policy, Germany had for
    some time been attempting to obtain a footing in China. Already
    in 1895 the German consul-general had arranged an agreement with
    the Chinese authorities which was to allow the establishing of
    a base at Hangchow. German explorers had examined the coast and
    had noticed the favorable situation of the harbor of Kiaochow.
    In November, 1897, two German Catholic missionaries were
    murdered. Admiral Diedrichs, who is remembered in America for
    his interference with Admiral Dewey at Manila Bay, resolved upon
    immediate action, steamed into the harbor of Kiaochow and took
    possession of the island of Tsingtao. He announced the occupation
    of the bay and of all the islands and dependencies on November
    15. An indemnity of 200,000 _taels_ was demanded, as well as the
    repayment of the expenses of the occupation, a ninety-nine year
    lease of the captive territory, and the cession of all mining
    rights and railway privileges. All this was granted, and Germany
    made good use of her privileges. At the outbreak of the European
    war the country had been developed and reclaimed to such a degree
    that Tsingtao with its buildings and forts looked like a bit of
    Prussia set into the Chinese coast.

    Through her occupation of this rich province and through the
    fact that Germany thus established a naval base opposite Japan's
    coast, she incurred the ill will of Japan. This ill will was
    later to be increased through Germany's conduct with regard to
    commerce regulations. At the time of the occupation Germany
    declared that Tsingtao was to be a port open to all the world.
    Subsequent regulations which she had made amounted to very serious
    discrimination against the commerce of other nations, especially
    that of the Japanese, which had already attained considerable
    importance. A plan was evolved in 1906 according to which Chinese
    customs duties were allowed to be collected in the colony in return
    for an annual consideration, which amounted to twenty per cent of
    the entire customs duties of the Tsingtao district. In this way,
    what she allowed China to collect from German merchants she forced
    China to pay back to her. Other merchants were, of course, likewise
    forced to pay the duties, and Germany received a considerable
    percentage of the toll. The discrimination, if not obvious, was
    very real, and the feeling of the Japanese distinctly hostile.

    Prince Henry was sent out to take command of the increased East
    Asiatic Squadron on December 16, 1897, and took command in the
    following March. On the eve of his departure a great farewell
    dinner was given him in the Royal Palace at Kiel. The Emperor spoke
    as follows:


As I rode into Kiel to-day I thought of the many times on which I had
visited this city joyfully at your side and on my ships, either to be
present at the sports or at some one of our military undertakings. On
my arrival in the city to-day an earnest and deep feeling moved me,
for I am perfectly conscious of the task which I have set before you
and of the responsibility which I bear. But I am likewise conscious
of the fact that it is my duty to build up and carry farther what my
predecessors have bequeathed to me.

The journey which you are to undertake and the task which you are to
accomplish indicate nothing new in themselves; it is merely the logical
consequence of what my departed grandfather and his great Chancellor
inaugurated politically and what our glorious father won with his sword
on the field of battle. It is nothing more than the first expression of
the newly united and newly arisen German Empire in its tasks beyond the
seas. The empire has developed so astonishingly through the extension
of its commercial interests that it is my duty to follow up the new
German Hansa and to give it the protection which it has a right to
expect from the empire and the Emperor.

Our German brothers of the church who have gone out to their quiet
work and have not spared risking their lives in order to spread and
make a home for our religion on foreign soil have placed themselves
under my protection, and it is now a question of providing support
and safety for these brothers who have been so often insulted and
oppressed. For that reason the undertaking which I intrust to you and
which you must fulfil in company with your comrades and the ships
which are already out there is really one of protection and not one
of defiance. Under the protecting banner of our German flag of war
we expect that the rights which we are justified in demanding will
be guaranteed to our commerce, to the German merchant, and to German
ships--the same right which is vouchsafed by strangers to all other

Our commerce is not new; in old times the Hanseatic League was one
of the most powerful enterprises which the world has ever seen, and
the German cities were able to build a fleet such as the sea's broad
back had never carried in earlier days, but finally it came to naught
because the one condition was lacking, namely that of an Emperor's
protection. Now things have changed; the first condition, the German
Empire, has been created; the second condition, German commerce,
flourishes and develops, and it can only develop properly and securely
if it feels itself safe under the power of the empire. Imperial power
means sea power, and sea power and imperial power are so interdependent
that the one cannot exist without the other.

As a token of this imperial sea power the squadron which has been
strengthened by your division must now take its place, with all the
comrades of the foreign fleet out there in close relationship and
on good terms of friendship, but for the purpose of protecting our
particular interests against every one who might be tempted to intrude
upon the right of the Germans. That is your task and your mission.

Make it clear to every European there, to the German merchant, and,
above all things, to the foreigner in whose country we are or with
whom we have to deal, that the German _Michel_[16] has set his shield,
decorated with the imperial eagle, firmly upon the ground. Whoever
asks him for protection will always receive it. And may our countrymen
out there cherish the firm conviction, whether they are priests or
merchants or whatever profession they follow, that the protection
of the German Empire as exemplified in the Emperor's ships will
continuously be granted them! But if any one should undertake to insult
us in our rights or to wish to harm us, then drive in with the mailed
fist and, as God wills, bind about your young brow the laurels which no
one in the entire German Empire will begrudge you!

[16] The German _Michel_ is the proverbial representative of the German
     character, as Uncle Sam is of the American or John Bull of the
     English. He is usually pictured as a simple, good-natured fellow.

In the firm conviction that you, following good examples--and, God
be praised, examples are not wanting in our house--will carry out my
thoughts and wishes, I raise my glass and drink it to your health, with
the wish for a good voyage, for a happy issue to your task, and for
a joyous return. Long live his Royal Highness, Prince Henry! Hurrah!
Hurrah! Hurrah!


POTSDAM, JUNE 16, 1898

    On the day of the tenth anniversary of his coming to the throne
    the Emperor assembled the regiments of the guard in the gardens of
    Potsdam and made them the following address:

The most important heritage which my noble grandfather and father left
me is the army, and I received it with pride and joy. To it I addressed
my first decree when I mounted the throne. As I enter into the next
decade of my reign I again address it in these words: You who are
now assembled here constitute the 1st Infantry Regiment of the guard,
in which I grew up; the Regiment of the Gardes du Corps, the most
distinguished regiment of the cavalry body-guard of the Prussian Kings;
the Hussar Regiment of the Body-Guard, which I have always commanded;
and the Cadet Corps of the Infantry Battalion, which represents the
entire army and which in Potsdam enjoys the honor of providing the
guard for the King and his house.

Perhaps never did an army suffer such severe loss as in the year 1888.
Never has an army lost in the course of a single year two such powerful
leaders crowned with laurel and honor, who were at the same time its
war lords.[17] I look back gratefully upon the years which have passed
since that time.

[17] It is interesting to note that the Emperor here himself explicitly
     makes the distinction between commander of an army, _Heerführer_,
     and war lord, _Kriegsherr_, a title which can only be bestowed
     upon the Emperor.

Seldom has so difficult a task fallen to the lot of a successor who
in a brief period had been forced to see both his grandfather and his
father carried away by death. The crown was weighed down with heavy
cares. Every one lacked confidence in me; everywhere I was falsely
judged. One alone believed in me, one alone had faith--that was the
army. And leaning upon her, trusting upon our old guard, I took up my
heavy charge, knowing well that the army was the main support of my
country, the main support of the Prussian throne, to which the decision
of God had called me. I therefore turn to you first to-day and express
to you my congratulations and my gratitude, and in these expressions I
include likewise with you all your brothers in the army. I am of the
firm conviction that, through the self-sacrificing devotion of the
officers and men in their faithful work of peace, the army during the
last ten years has been maintained in the same condition in which I
received it from my departed predecessors.

In the next ten years, faithfully bound together, let us seek further
the unconditional fulfilment of our duty in old and unremitting labor,
and may the main supports of our army remain forever intact! They are
courage, sense of honor, and unconditional, iron, blind obedience.

That is my wish which I to-day address to you and with you to the
entire army.



    After the founding of the German Empire Prince Bismarck, who
    initiated and carried through many of the policies which brought
    great prosperity to the German people, was looked upon with much
    favor and enjoyed great popularity. Emperor William II, as has
    been noted, dismissed him from his post as Imperial Chancellor in
    the second year of his reign. His attitude toward Bismarck has
    already been discussed (March 26, 1895). In most of his speeches
    which recount the progress of the empire the Emperor is strangely
    silent about this great figure in German history. When Bismarck
    died, however (July 30, 1898), the Emperor immediately interrupted
    his journey into the north and returned on the second of August to
    pay his respects at the bier of the first Imperial Chancellor in
    Friedrichsruh. On the same day he issued the following statement
    which appeared that evening in the special edition of the

    It is noticeable that on this occasion the Emperor speaks of
    his grandfather as "William the Great." His tendency to set
    his ancestors upon lofty pedestals and to praise them somewhat
    extravagantly finds expression in many of the speeches. He was
    very desirous of having his grandfather called by this title, and
    here as everywhere took the initiative. His lead, however, was not
    generally followed. When the city of Hamburg erected a monument
    to William I the pedestal was left without an inscription. This
    has been explained by the fact that they were unwilling to say,
    "William the Great," and afraid to say merely, "William I."

With my lofty peers and with the whole German people I stand in
mourning at the bier of the first Chancellor of the German Empire,
Prince Otto von Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg. We who were witnesses of
his masterly work, who looked upon him as the master of statecraft,
as the fearless champion in war as in peace, as the most devoted
son of his Fatherland and most faithful servant of his Emperor, are
deeply shaken by the demise of the man in whom the Lord God created
the implement with which to carry into effect the deathless idea of
Germany's union and greatness.

At this moment it is not fitting to recount all the deeds which the
great departed accomplished, all the cares which he bore for the
Emperor and the empire, all the successes which he won. They are too
powerful and manifold, and only history can and will engrave them upon
her brass tablets.

But I feel constrained to make some expression before the world of the
whole-hearted grief and grateful reverence which to-day fill the entire
nation and, in the name of the nation, to make a vow that what he, the
great Chancellor, built up under Emperor William the Great I shall
maintain and develop and, if need be, defend with our possessions and
our blood.

In this may the Lord God help us!

I commission you to bring to public attention this, my decree.

                                                     WILLIAM, I. R.

  To the Imperial Chancellor.




    A previous address shows that in the mind of the Emperor the idea
    of world-empire carried with it the idea of naval supremacy. In
    this period he was increasingly interested in the industrial and
    especially the naval and maritime expansion of Germany. A number of
    his speeches take up this subject; so, for instance, he was present
    at the opening of the new harbor at Stettin and delivered this

With full heart I congratulate you on your completed work. You began
with a fresh spirit of daring. You were able to begin it, thanks to the
interest of my departed grandfather, the great Emperor, who built the
iron girdle around the city. After the moment when this iron mantle
fell you could take a larger and wider point of view. You did not delay
but carried it out with real Pomeranian recklessness and obstinacy. You
have succeeded, and I am pleased that the old Pomeranian spirit has
again come to life in you and has driven you from the land upon the

Our future lies upon the water, and I am deeply convinced that this
work which you, Herr Burgomaster, have carried out with foresight
and care and energy will always be linked with your name, even after
centuries, by the grateful citizens of the city of Stettin and that
your work will always be recognized.

But I, as lord of the land and King, express my thanks to you that you
have brought the city of Stettin to such a flourishing position. I hope
and expect, yes, I might say, I demand, that she shall go on developing
at this same rate, not divided by party strife and with her glance
fixed upon the great whole, in order that she may come to a state of
development such as has never yet been achieved. That is my wish!



    On the 12th of October, 1898, the Emperor and Empress set out on
    their journey to the Holy Land, accompanied by many representatives
    of the church. In Venice they visited the Italian King and Queen
    and passed on by way of Messina and Constantinople. They reached
    Jerusalem on October 29. During his stay at Constantinople the
    Emperor obtained the rights to a piece of land, the _Dormitio
    Sanctæ Virginis_, and turned it over to the German Catholics in
    Jerusalem. On November 4 they began their return journey via
    Damascus. Though the dedication of the Church of Our Redeemer
    constituted the ostensible object of the visit, the Emperor had
    also other purposes in mind. He took the occasion to announce that
    he would protect the interests of all Germans of whatever faith.
    This is the more significant when we remember that up to this time
    the French had always been allowed to assume the duty of protecting
    the Catholics there. The Emperor likewise had in mind increasing
    his prestige in the East. One of the outward indications of the
    growing friendliness between Turkey and Germany which was then
    strengthened may be found in the fact that the building of the
    Anatolian railway was intrusted to a German company, to which was
    also granted a concession for a harbor and permission to extend the
    line through Bagdad to Bassora.

    It will be noted that the approach to Jerusalem aroused a very
    unfavorable impression in the Emperor. Nevertheless, he had
    somewhat unusual preparations made for his entrance. The old
    walls of the sacred city were breached in order to allow him to
    make his entry in imperial state. In pursuance of his policy as
    a world-emperor he attempted during his visit, as we have seen,
    both by his acts and by his speeches, to conciliate all sects and
    creeds; the Catholics through the grant of land, which likewise
    pleased the Centre or Catholic party at home; the Evangelicals
    through the dedication of a church; and the Moslems incidentally
    and through his speech nine days later at Damascus, in the course
    of which he said: "May the Sultan and may the three hundred
    million Mohammedans who are scattered over the face of the earth
    and who recognize him as their caliph be assured of the fact
    that at all times the German Emperor will be their friend!" This
    friendship of the Emperor for the Sultan was not to be clouded by
    the Armenian massacres, nor did the assassinations in Asia Minor
    evoke any protest. Indeed, we are told by a well-known foreign
    correspondent that "five days after the great massacre of August,
    1896, in Constantinople, when Turkish soldiers shot down their
    fellow citizens under the eyes of the Sultan and of the foreign
    ambassadors, William II sent to Abdul-Hamid for his birthday a
    family photograph of himself with the Empress and his children." At
    Damascus, he likewise laid a wreath upon the tomb of Saladin.

    After the service in the Evangelical Church at Bethlehem the
    Emperor gathered about him the Evangelical ministers and made them
    this address, which was reported by E. Bosse, who at that time was
    the Prussian _Kultusminister_.

If I am to give you the impressions of these last days, then I must
tell you that, above all, I am very much disappointed. I did not wish
to say that here, but after I had heard that the same thing had
happened to others also, and among them to my court chaplain, for
instance, I no longer wish to hide this from you. It may, indeed,
be that the very unfavorable approach to the city of Jerusalem has
contributed to this impression, but when one sees such conditions in
the holy places and sees how things happen there it cuts one to the

That the emanation of the love of the Creator took place here where
we are now standing is a fact of extraordinary import, and yet how
little does it correspond to what we have seen! I am, therefore, doubly
pleased to have received my first elevating impression in the Holy
Land at this service among you. The particular example of Jerusalem
warns us insistently that we must suppress as far as possible the
slight deviations in our sects, and that the Evangelical Church and the
Evangelical creed must put forward a firmly united front here in the
East. Otherwise we can accomplish nothing. We can only work through
example, through the practice and proof that the gospel is a gospel of
love in all quarters of the heavens and that it bears other fruits.

Only the life of Christians can make any impression upon the
Mohammedans. No one can criticise them if they have little respect for
the Christian name. Our churches divide against each other. Indeed,
they must be restrained from quarrelling through the external power of
arms. In the political world, under all possible pretexts we take away
from them [the Mohammedans] one piece of territory after another, for
which we have no justification, so that our influence has been much
weakened and we have fallen to a very low level.

And now it is our turn! The German Empire and the German name have now
won a consideration in the entire Ottoman Empire such as has never
existed before. It is, therefore, for us to show what the Christian
religion really is, that the practice of Christian love even toward the
Mohammedan, not through dogmas and attempts at conversion but merely
through example, is our plain duty. The Mohammedan is a very zealous
believer, so that preaching alone will not suffice. But our culture,
our institutions, the life which we live before them, the manner of our
conduct toward them, and the proof that we are united among ourselves,
these alone will have effect.

It is a kind of examination which we must pass for our Protestant
faith and our creed. Through this we must give them proof of what
Christianity is. In this way we may inspire in them an interest for
our religion and for the Christian creed. See to it that this remains



    The Church of Our Redeemer at Jerusalem was dedicated in the
    presence of the Emperor by the general superintendent and head
    court chaplain, Doctor Dryander, of Berlin. The church had been
    planned by King Frederick William IV. After the dedication there
    was a special church service, and after the prayer by the general
    superintendent the Emperor offered the following address:

God has been gracious enough to allow us to dedicate in this city,
which is holy to all Christians, and in this place, which is
consecrated by labors of true love, a house of worship which we
have built to honor the Saviour of the world. Through the building
and dedication of the Church of Our Redeemer there has now come to
successful issue a plan which my blessed predecessors cherished for
more than half a century and sought to carry out as the protectors of
the work of love which was founded here in Evangelical interests.

Through the saving power of the love which serves, all hearts should
now here be brought to the consideration of those things in which alone
the troubled human spirit may find salvation, rest, and peace here and

All Evangelical Christians, even far beyond Germany's borders, are
following our service here with closest interest and sympathy. The
delegates of the Evangelical congregation and many who share the
Evangelical faith from all parts of the world have come with us to this
place in order to be personal witnesses to the completion of this work
of faith and love through which the name of our great Lord and Saviour
is to be glorified and the kingdom of God upon earth to be advanced.

Jerusalem, the lofty city on which our feet are standing, calls to mind
memories of the great act of redemption of our Lord and Saviour. She
shows us the common labor which unites all Christians, regardless of
confessions and nations, in the apostolic faith.

The power which renewed the world through the gospel which originated
here drives us to follow Him; it warns us to look up in faith to Him
who died for us upon the cross. It warns us to be patient Christians
and to carry out the doctrine of unselfish love of our neighbor in
regard to all men. It promises us also that if we hold firm to the
true teaching of the gospel even the gates of hell shall not prevail
against our dear Evangelical Church.

It was in Jerusalem that was born the Light of the World, in whose
splendor our German people has grown great and powerful. What the
Germanic peoples have become they have become under the protection of
the cross upon Golgotha and through the practice of self-sacrificing
love of their neighbors. Just as two thousand years ago, so to-day that
call, "Peace upon earth," which voices the earnest hopes of us all,
should go forth to all the world.

Not splendor, not might, not glory, not honor, not earthly goods it
is that we seek here. We pant, beseech, and strive only for the one
highest good, the salvation of our souls, and as I now on this solemn
day here repeat the vow of my ancestors who are resting in God, "I and
my house, we will serve the Lord," so I ask you all to make the same
vow. Let every one seek according to his position and his calling to
bring it about that all those who bear the name of the crucified Lord
will live their lives under the sign of His holy name to a victory over
all the dark powers which are begotten in sin and selfishness.

May God grant that rich streams of blessing may flow back from here
into united Christendom, and that on the throne as in the hut, that
at home as abroad, trust in God, love of our fellows, patience in
affliction, and thorough labor may remain the brightest jewels of the
German people, and that the spirit of peace may permeate and hallow the
Evangelical Church more and more.

He, the God of grace, will hear our prayers; that is our expectation.
He alone is the strong and safe retreat upon which we build.

        "Did we in our own strength confide,
          Our striving would be losing;
        Were not the right man on our side,
          The man of God's own choosing.
        Dost ask who that may be?
        Christ Jesus, it is He;
        Lord Sabaoth His name,
        From age to age the same,
          And He must win the battle."[18]

[18] Luther's "Ein' Feste Burg," translated by F. H. Hedge.



    There is a particular whole-heartedness noticeable in all of the
    Emperor's speeches to his hereditary subjects, the Brandenburgers.
    He seemed to take them most fully into his confidence and expect
    from them a higher degree of loyalty and understanding. For them
    he felt a particular kinship. His personal pretensions are,
    therefore, set forth in these speeches and in those to the
    Prussians, as for instance in his Königsberg speech (August 25,
    1910) with less reserve than usual, if we may speak of reserve in
    one who shows but little and who is unusually frank and personal
    in his statements. It is for this reason that these speeches have
    occasionally been severely criticised by his South German subjects,
    as for instance by Doctor Liman in his "Der Kaiser." This address
    was delivered by the Emperor at a banquet which was given by Doctor
    von Achenbach, _Oberpräsident_ of Brandenburg Province and Minister
    of State, to the members of the Provincial Assembly. The wording
    is taken from the "_Reichsanzeiger_." The historical facts here
    referred to will be found in chapter I.


The speech which we have just heard has laid before us in small compass
and in patriotic spirit, embellished with poetic flights, the deeds of
my house and the history of our people. I think that I speak from the
heart of all of you when I say that there were two circumstances which
made it possible for my ancestors and my house to discharge their tasks
in this way. The first and prime circumstance was the fact that, above
all other princes, and even in a time when perhaps such thoughts and
feelings were not yet current, they felt and discharged the personal
responsibility of the ruler toward Heaven. The second circumstance is
the fact that they had behind them the people of the mark. Let us look
back to the time when Frederick I had been named Elector and when he
exchanged his magnificent Frankish home country for the mark, which at
that time was in a condition which we can hardly picture to ourselves
even from the description of historians. We can only understand this
exchange on the assumption that the ruler felt within himself the
call to journey to this land, which had been intrusted to him by the
imperial protection in order here to bring about a better-ordered
condition, not only for the Emperor's sake or for his own sake, but he
was convinced that the task had been given him from above.

The same conviction we shall find in all of my ancestors. Their great
battles without and the development and the making of laws within
the country have always been dictated by the thought that they were
responsible for the people given over to them and for the country which
had been intrusted to them.

Your President has been kind enough to mention our journey to Palestine
and the acts which I accomplished there. I dare say that many different
impressions of a lofty nature forced themselves upon me, and they were
partly religious, partly historical, and partly drawn from modern life,
but aside from the celebration in our church (October 31, 1898), the
loftiest and the deepest was the consciousness that I was standing on
the Mount of Olives, that I was treading upon the very place where the
greatest battle which was ever fought out upon the earth, the battle
for the salvation of mankind, had been fought out by our Saviour. This
fact moved me, as it were, on that same day to renew my oath to the
flag above that I would leave nothing untried in order to unite my
people and to push aside whatever might be able to divide it.

But as I was tarrying in the far country, and in different places where
we Germans feel so keenly the lack of dear woods and beautiful waters,
I remembered the lakes of the mark with their dark, clear waves, and
the woods of oak and of fir, and I thought to myself that, although in
Europe they sometimes looked down upon us, we are none the less much
better off in Brandenburg than in foreign countries. And when I think
of the tree and of the use we make of it and our love for the woods I
am reminded of an incident that is very interesting for us as we begin
to develop the empire.

It was after the great and noble achievements of the year 1870-1. The
troops had returned home; the tumult and the enthusiasm had subsided,
and the old work of founding and developing our newly conquered
Fatherland was now to begin. There, for the first time, the three
paladins of the great old Emperor, the great General,[19] the powerful
Chancellor,[20] and the faithful Minister of War,[21] were sitting
together at their common meal. After they had emptied the first glass
to the Lord of the Land and to the Fatherland, the Chancellor spoke and
turning to his two colleagues said: "We have now achieved everything
for which we have striven, suffered, and fought. We have reached the
highest point of which we had ever dreamed. What can there now be,
after what we have lived through, which shall interest or elevate or
inspire us?" There was a pause and then the old master of battles said
suddenly, "We can watch the tree grow," and a deep silence fell upon
the room.

[19] Moltke.

[20] Bismarck.

[21] Roon.

Yes, gentlemen! The tree which we watch growing and for which we must
care is the German imperial oak. A healthy growth is in store for it
because it stands under the protection of the people of the mark in
whose land it is rooted. It has lived through many a storm and has
often been threatened, but the stalk and the shoot which are sunk in
the sands of the mark will, God willing, endure to all eternity!

I can merely vow once again to-day to do everything for it that is in
my power! And even the journey to hallowed shrines and places will help
me in this, and I shall be better able, therefore, to protect this
tree and to watch and foster it, cutting back like a good gardener
the branches which are superfluous, and keeping watch upon and
exterminating the animals which would gnaw at its roots. I hope that
I may then see this picture. The tree will have developed gloriously
and before it the German _Michel_ will be standing, his hand upon his
sword, and looking out into the distance in order to protect it. That
peace stands firm which stands under the shield and under the sword of
the German _Michel_.

It is a magnificent thing to begin with the idea of bringing peace to
all the nations; but an error is likely to slip into our calculations.
So long as there is unregenerate sin in humanity, so long there will
be war and hatred, envy and discord, and one man will try to take
advantage of another. But the rules which govern men govern nations
also. Therefore we must see to it that we Germans, at least, stand
together like a firm block. Far beyond the seas[22] and here in Europe,
may every wave that threatens peace break upon this "_rocher de
bronze_" of the German people! But it is the mark and its inhabitants
first of all which are called upon to help me in this, and as I assume
that it is not hard for you to follow the black and white banner and
your red one,[23] so I hope that I shall be understood by you when I say
that I intend to look for aid to the mark now and hereafter, and that I
count upon its loyal support!

[22] The Spanish-American War was ended by treaty December 10, 1898.

[23] The flag of Brandenburg is a red griffin on a white field.

Therefore I raise my glass and call out: Long live Brandenburg and the
inhabitants of the mark. Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!



    On the Czar's birthday the Emperor was present at the banquet given
    in Wiesbaden, to which the Russian Ambassador, Count Osten-Sacken,
    had been invited. The Emperor proposed the following toast. On the
    same day the peace conference at The Hague had been opened and the
    Russian delegate De Staal had been elected its president. At the
    end of August, 1898, the Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs had
    issued the following communication to all the representatives of
    the powers in St. Petersburg. "The maintenance of universal peace
    and a possible reduction of the armaments which burden all nations
    in the present state of civilization is an ideal for all the world
    toward which all governments must be directed." The Czar believed
    that a conference might achieve this object, and he suggested that
    they might regulate the reduction of armaments all around and
    eliminate many of the horrors of war through the establishment of
    certain humane principles. The programme was presented by Russia on
    January 11, 1899, and the conference was called on her invitation
    for May 18 of that year.

Every year I offer my toast to the health of his Majesty, the Emperor
of Russia, with deep feeling. To-day I add to it my heartiest good
wishes for the success of the conference which owes its inception to
his Majesty's initiative.

My honored Baron, my wish includes the hope that the two tried and
experienced statesmen, his Excellency Baron de Staal and Count Münster,
may succeed in their efforts and that they may conduct the conference
on the old, established tradition which unites my house to that of
his Majesty and the German people to the Russian; and by doing so, in
accordance with the exactly similar orders which the Emperor and I have
issued, that the conference may result to the entire satisfaction of
his Majesty.

His Majesty, the Emperor Nicholas! Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!



    Kadinen is one of the Emperor's many farming estates and is
    situated in the neighborhood of Elbing, in East Prussia. It was
    here that he expressed the following sentiment:

Many things must be changed at Kadinen; especially the housing of the
laborers must be changed. Here in the east this seems still to be a
particular evil. The fine cattle stable in Kadinen is a veritable
palace compared to the homes of the laborers. We must see to it that
the pigsties are not better than the laborers' houses.



    The following noble address of the Emperor's was delivered at the
    dedication of the monument to the soldiers of the 1st Regiment of
    the Guard, who fell in the battle of St. Privat (August 18, 1870).
    In it he speaks of the splendid heroism of the French troops who
    were fighting for their Emperor. It should be remembered that the
    monument was erected in the provinces which had been conquered
    from France by Germany. At this time the Emperor had adopted a
    conciliatory attitude toward the inhabitants of these provinces.
    (See speech of March 14, 1891.) If, therefore, it may seem
    ungracious, it is nevertheless merely just to call attention to
    the fact that when he later (March 28, 1901) presented a painting
    of the battle of St. Privat to the Alexander Regiment of the Guard
    in Berlin he did not mention French heroism and speaks a different

Serious and solemn memories surround this day and make our hearts beat
high. My 1st Infantry Regiment of the Guard is represented here by
my company of the Body-Guard, by its glorious flags, and by many old
comrades who once fought and bled in this place. They are to-day to
unveil this monument to their fallen comrades. This ceremony will take
place in the presence of my youngest regiment,[24] and the troops of the
Fourteenth Army Corps, which represent the entire German army.

[24] Infantry Regiment No. 145, garrisoned at Metz.

It has been almost the only regiment which up to the present has not
been represented by a monument in this place, where so much blood was
shed, and yet it had full claim to be thus commemorated. Through its
history it is closely associated with my house, and it is called upon
to train its Princes and Kings, and may therefore be properly regarded
as a family and a house regiment. Nevertheless, my imperial grandfather
did not hesitate a moment to hazard these troops, which were so dear
to him, for the good of the Fatherland.

History teaches us how the regiment fought and bled and respected its
oath to the flag and how its conduct, its sufferings, and its losses
won the praise and the tears of the great Emperor.

With me as its oldest comrade the regiment now erects this shaft to the
memory of the heroes that rest beneath the green sod. The form of the
monument differs from that which is usually found on battle-fields.
The archangel in armor, peacefully at rest, is leaning upon his sword,
which is decorated with the proud motto of the regiment, "_Semper
talis_."[25] I therefore wish that a general significance should be
attached to this figure. It stands upon this bloody field as the
guardian of all the brave soldiers, both the French and our own, who
fell here. For bravely and heroically the French soldiers sank to their
honored graves, fighting for their Emperor and their Fatherland. And
if our flags touch each other as they are lowered before the bronze
monument and sadly rustle over the graves of our dear comrades, may
they also wave over the graves of our opponents and whisper to them
that in reverent sorrow we remember the brave dead!

[25] By an unfortunate error Penzler prints the motto as "_Semper
     talio_"--"Retaliation forever." The reading has been changed, as
     the motto of the regiment is in reality "_Semper talis_"--"Ever
     the same."

Let us look up to the Lord of Hosts and thank Him for the guidance
graciously given to our great Emperor. Let us picture to ourselves
to-day that the souls of all those who once opposed each other in
fierce conflict upon this field are now gathered about the throne of
the Supreme Judge and that, united in the everlasting peace of God,
they now look down upon us.



Many of the speeches which follow will be found to bear upon the
question of increasing the navy, and from this time forth, for various
reasons, that idea will be uppermost in the Emperor's mind. His
statement that he had, from the first, strongly urged an increase in
the navy must be accepted with certain reserves. Such increases as were
suggested were slight as compared to the programmes now to be urged,
and his speeches of that time give little evidence of any particular
insistence or disappointment at his failure in this regard. He really
begins to preach the need of the greater navy insistently in the last
years of the century, and his present statement, "Bitterly do we need
a powerful German fleet," is his sharpest pronouncement up to this
time. It takes on an added significance if we remember that it was made
nine days after the Boer ultimatum which began the Boer War had been
despatched. In this connection it is well to read the telegram sent to
President Krüger, printed with the _Daily Telegraph_ interview (October
28, 1908).

William II had in 1889 divided the admiralty and appointed a naval
officer to act as head of the organization and development of the
fleet. It was only in the late nineties, however, after the appointment
of Admiral Tirpitz, that this work began to go forward with leaps and
bounds. That German sentiment was quick to follow the lead of the
Emperor is shown by the immense enthusiasm which has made the German
Navy League (organized in 1898) so great a success. In 1907 it already
counted a million paying members, and its journal, _Die Flotte_, had a
circulation of over 370,000 copies, which is about as large as that of
nearly all other important German monthlies combined.[26] Shortly after
the disaster of Spion Kop Admiral Tirpitz spoke thus: "We do not know
what adversary we may have to face. We must therefore arm ourselves
with a view to meeting the most dangerous naval conflict possible."
The preamble to the German navy bill of 1900 reads: "Germany must have
a fleet of such strength that a war against the mightiest power would
involve risks threatening the supremacy of that power." Emperor William
protests, and there is no reason for doubting his sincerity, that this
policy of increasing the navy was not primarily directed at England. It
was necessary to protect Germany's commerce and increase her prestige.
On this point his famous interview given to the _Daily Telegraph_ is
interesting. Undoubtedly, however, this rapid increase in the navy,
which began with the navy bill of 1900 and which happened to coincide
with the events of the Boer War, did much to heighten the ill feeling
which had already begun to spring up between England and Germany. The
idea of increasing the navy met with more general support among the
people than any other policy of the Emperor's, though it called for
very decided increases in taxation. How keen was the Emperor's personal
interest in the matter we may judge from the fact that in 1897 he sent
to all the members of the Reichstag and innumerable other officials a
memorandum comparing the naval strength of Germany, France, Russia,
America, and Japan. The appropriation bill of that year calling for
240,000,000 marks was voted with a slight reduction. The sense that the
struggle for naval supremacy with England was impending made necessary
immensely larger appropriations in the bill of 1900.

[26] These are the figures given by J. Ellis Barker in "Modern Germany."



    The _Kaiser Karl der Grosse_ was launched in Hamburg on the 18th
    of October, 1899. It will be noticed that the Emperor is always
    careful to observe the anniversaries that commemorate the military
    prowess, the birthdays, and the achievements of the members of his
    house. The present date is again an anniversary of the battle of
    Leipzig, 1813. In the evening the Emperor spoke as follows at the
    banquet in the Rathaus:

It is with particular pleasure that I find myself among you again on
this historic anniversary. It always gives me new strength and vigor
when I feel around me the dashing spray and bubbling life of one of
the cities of the Hanseatic League. It was a solemn act that we have
just witnessed when we gave over to its element a new portion of the
floating defense of the Fatherland. Every one who was present must have
been impressed with the thought that the proud ship would soon be able
to take up its calling. We feel its lack, and bitterly do we need a
powerful German fleet.

Its name reminds us of the first glorious days of the old empire and
of its mighty protector. The first beginnings of Hamburg date from
that time, even though it was merely the point of departure for the
missions in the service of the powerful Emperor. Now our Fatherland
has been newly united through Emperor William the Great and is in a
position to take up its glorious outward development. And right here
in this great emporium of trade we feel the sense of power and energy
which the German people are capable of putting into their enterprises
through the fact that they are bound together and united. But here,
too, we can most readily understand how necessary it is that we should
have powerful support and that we can no longer continue without
increasing our fighting strength upon the seas.

But this feeling penetrates all too slowly into the German Fatherland,
which unfortunately wastes its strength in fruitless party strife.
I have had to watch with deep concern how slow is the progress of
interest in, and political comprehension of, the great world problems
among the German people.

If we look about us we can see how in the last few years the face of
all the world has been changed. Old world empires are disappearing
and new ones are arising. Nations have appeared among the peoples and
are taking their place in the competition--nations which previously
the layman had scarcely noticed. Events which change the whole field
of international relationships and the whole field of our national
economy, and which formerly were accomplished only in the course of
centuries, now take place in a few months. Through this fact the tasks
of the German Empire and the German people have grown greatly in extent
and demand from me and my government extraordinary and serious efforts.
They can be crowned with success only if the Germans stand behind us
firmly united and give up their party divisions. But our people must
make up their minds to make sacrifices. Above all things, it must give
up the attempt to find the highest by dividing itself more and more
sharply into parties. It must cease to put the party above the good of
the nation. It must put a check upon its old hereditary failing to make
everything the occasion of unrestrained criticism, and it must realize
the boundaries which its own vital interests draw for it. For it is
precisely these old political sins which are now being visited upon
our interests on the sea and upon our fleet. I insistently requested
and warned that it must be strengthened in the first eight years of
my reign, and if these requests had not been continually refused, and
refused in ways which heaped scorn and ridicule upon me, we would have
been able to advance our growing trade and our oversea interests far

But my hopes that the German will choose the manlier way have not yet
disappeared, for in him love of the Fatherland is great and powerful.
The October fires which to-day he lights upon the hills and by which he
celebrates the noble figure of the Emperor[27] who was born on this day
bear eloquent witness to this fact.

[27] Frederick III.

And, in fact, Emperor Frederick with his great father and his great
paladins did help to build a wonderful edifice and left it to us as the
German Empire. It stands before us in glory, as it had been yearned
for by our fathers and celebrated by our poets! Let us no longer,
therefore, as heretofore, dispute uselessly as to how the particular
rooms, halls, and apartments of this building are to look or how they
are to be furnished; but may the people, burning like these October
fires with an ideal enthusiasm, strive to follow its ideal second
Emperor, and above all things let it rejoice in the beautiful edifice
and help to protect it. Let it be proud of its greatness. Let it be
conscious of its inner worth. Let it watch every foreign state in
its development. Let it make the sacrifices which our position as a
world-power demands. Let it give up the spirit of party and stand
united and firm behind its princes and its Emperor--then only will the
German people help the Hanseatic cities in carrying out their great
work for the benefit of the Fatherland.

That is my wish to-day, and to it and the health of Hamburg I raise my



    The military New Year's celebration took place near the armory, and
    the standards of the entire Berlin garrison were for this purpose
    brought from the Royal Palace. The Empress and her younger children
    watched the celebration from the windows of the armory.

The first day of the new century sees our army, that is our people
under arms, gathered about its standards and kneeling before the Lord
of Hosts. And, indeed, if any one has particular cause for bowing down
to-day before God it is our army.

A glance at our flags will explain the reason, for they embody our
history. At the beginning of the last century what was the position of
our army? The glorious army of Frederick the Great had become ossified
and was interested only in petty and insignificant details; it was led
by generals feeble with age and no longer capable of conducting active
campaigns; its corps of officers had lost the habit of invigorating
labor; through a life of luxury and comfort and foolish exaltation of
self it had fallen asleep upon its laurels. In one word, the army was
not only no longer capable of carrying out its task, but had forgotten

The punishment of Heaven was grievous, for it was suddenly visited
upon our entire people. Cast down into the dust, Frederick's glory
vanished, and the army's standards were broken. In the seven long years
of grievous slavery God taught our people to take thought, and under
the pressure of the foot of an insolent conqueror developed the idea of
universal military service, the idea that the greatest honor lies in
dedicating our services in arms and in sacrificing our blood and our
possessions for the Fatherland. My great-grandfather gave the idea form
and life, and new laurels crowned the newly established army and her
recent flags.

But the idea of universal military service reached its full
significance only under our great departed Emperor. In spite of
opposition and lack of comprehension he quietly went to work at the
reorganization, and at the re-establishment of our army. Victorious
campaigns, nevertheless, gave his work an altogether unexpected
sanction. His spirit filled the ranks of his army, even as his trust
in God carried them on to unheard-of victories. With this, his own
creation, he brought the Germanic peoples together again and gave us
the German unity for which we had prayed. We owe it to him that, thanks
to this honor, the German Empire commands respect again and takes up
its appointed place in the council of the nations.

It is for you, gentlemen, to cherish and exemplify in the new century
the old qualities through which our forefathers gave greatness to the
army. This means that you must make few demands in daily life,[28] that
you must practise simplicity and give yourselves up unconditionally
to the royal service, that you must in ceaseless labor offer all the
powers of body and soul to the building up and development of our
troops, and, just as my grandfather labored for his land forces,
so, undeterred, I shall carry through to its completion the work of
reorganizing my navy in order that it may stand justified at the side
of my army and that through it the German Empire may also be in a
position to win outwardly the place which she has not yet attained.

[28] "To the Americans the pay of the German troops, officers and men,
     is ludicrously small. It is evident that men do not undertake
     to fit themselves to be officers, and do not struggle through
     frequent and severe examinations to remain officers, for the pay
     they receive. A lieutenant receives for the first three years $300
     a year, from the fourth to the sixth year $425, from the seventh
     to the ninth year $550, and after the twelfth year $600 a year.
     A captain receives from the first to the fourth year $850, from
     the fifth to the eighth year $1,150, and the ninth year and after
     $1,275 a year. Of one hundred officers who join, only an average
     of eight ever attain to the command of a regiment. In Bavaria and
     Würtemberg promotion is quicker by from one to three years than
     in Prussia. In Prussia promotion to _Oberleutnant_ averages 10
     years, to captain or _Rittmeister_ 15 years, to major 25 years,
     to colonel 33 years, and to general 37 years. It would not be
     altogether inhuman if these gentlemen occasionally drank a toast
     to war and pestilence."--PRICE COLLIER, "Germany and the Germans."

When both are united I hope to be in a position, firmly trusting in the
leadership of God, to carry into effect the saying of Frederick William
I: "If one wishes to decide anything in the world, it cannot be done
with the pen unless the pen is supported by the force of the sword."



    On the occasion of the return of Prince Henry from the Orient,
    whither he had been sent at the time of the troubles in Kiaochow,
    the Emperor greeted him at a dinner held in the Royal Palace in
    Berlin. The question of the imperial foreign policy, as during all
    this period, is evidently here uppermost in the Emperor's mind.


I bid you a hearty welcome to our Fatherland and our capital! Two years
ago I sent you forth to carry out your task in the far East, and could
only hope that God would give you His protection and bring the work to
a successful issue. The joyous and enthusiastic reception which all
classes in my home city, Berlin, give you is a testimony to the loving
interest which our entire people have in the completion of the task
which you had set yourself.

But this reception has a still deeper significance. It is an
unambiguous indication which proves how deeply the people have come to
understand the need of strengthening our sea power. The German people
is of one mind with its princes and its Emperor in the feeling that in
its powerful development it must set up a new boundary post and create
a great fleet which will correspond to its needs.

Just as Emperor William the Great created the weapon by whose help we
became again black, white, and red, so the German people is now lending
its efforts to forging the weapon through which, God willing and in all
eternity, both here and in foreign countries, it will remain black,
white, and red.

On your return you find a little lad[29] in the arms of your faithful
wife. As sponsor for the growth of our young fleet may you see him grow
up to full maturity under the protection of God! Hurrah!

[29] Prince Henry, born January 9, 1900.


LÜBECK, JUNE 16, 1900

    The opening of the Elbe-Trave Canal took place at Lübeck in the
    presence of the Emperor. He again took up the question of the
    development of the German Empire.

On this day I congratulate the city of Lübeck most heartily. First
of all I offer my heartiest thanks for the wonderful reception which
you prepared for me. I have seen in the attitude and the faces of the
citizens how joyously their hearts are moved to-day; for they know
that I, too, take a lively interest in all that now moves them. May
the canal which they have carried through with their irresistible
Hanseatic activity not fall short in any way of their expectations, and
I am convinced that it will not do so. You see, as you look upon the
completed work, how significant it is that a united German Empire now
exists. Its past glories Lübeck owed to the German Emperors, and its
present glory it owes to the German Empire, so I hope that everywhere
in the empire and among the people the conviction may grow that through
the re-establishment and strengthening of the German Empire we are
now called upon to carry through those old tasks which could not be
accomplished formerly and which were rendered impossible through the
unfortunate lack of union of our ancestors.

I hope that in the future, under my protection, Lübeck may continue to
develop. I could not express this hope with the same satisfaction if
I did not now stand before you joyously buoyed up by the hope that we
to-day have the prospect of at last possessing a German fleet.

An Emperor can only undertake to protect a seaport when he is in a
position with his cannon to protect her flag, even in the farthermost
corners of the world, whether it be that of Lübeck, or of Hamburg, or
of Bremen, or of Prussia.

May it be granted us to maintain peace outwardly through our fleet,
and may we succeed through the building of the necessary canals within
to simplify the problem of transportation! A blessing will certainly
always rest upon our waterways.


KIEL, JULY 3, 1900

    The ship of the line "Wittelsbach" was launched on this day. As
    the house of Wittelsbach is the reigning house of Bavaria, Prince
    Rupprecht of Bavaria was present at the christening and gave the
    boat its name. A banquet took place in the evening at the officers'
    casino. The Emperor replied to Prince Rupprecht as follows:

I thank your Royal Highness for the friendly words which you have been
good enough to address to me.

At the christening of this new ship your Royal Highness has mentioned
the support which the house of Wittelsbach has given to the German
Emperors. I would like to call attention in this connection to an
episode in the early history of our houses.

On the fields before Rome it was granted to one of the ancestors
of your Royal Highness in company with one of mine to be made the
recipient of a very unusual distinction. Mounted upon their horses
and clad in armor, in sight of the hostile squadron of knights,
they received the accolade from Emperor Henry VII. The incident is
immortalized in a picture upon my yacht _Hohenzollern_.

The descendants of those princes gave each other assistance at
Mühldorf,[30] where the Hohenzoller won the battle for Emperor Ludwig
of Bavaria. Just as at that time the houses of Wittelsbach and of
Hohenzollern fought side by side for the good of the empire, so now,
too, and in the future they will work together.

[30] Battle fought in 1322 between two competitors for the empire,
     Louis V and Frederick the Fair.

Your Royal Highness has had the opportunity to be present during these
days when we came to weighty conclusions and to be the witness of
historical moments which mark a new point in the history of our people.
Your Royal Highness has been able to convince himself how powerfully
the wave beat of the ocean knocks at the door of our people and forces
it to demand its place in the world as a great nation; drives it on, in
short, to world politics.

Germany's greatness makes it impossible for her to do without the
ocean--but the ocean also proves that even in the distance, and on its
farther side, without Germany and the German Emperor no great decision
dare henceforth be taken.[31]

[31] See the introduction to chapter IV, "The Beginning of World

I do not believe that thirty years ago our German people, under the
leadership of their princes, bled and conquered in order that they
might be shoved aside when great decisions are to be made in foreign
politics. If that could happen the idea that the German people are to
be considered as a world-power would be dead and done for, and it is
not my will that this should happen. To this end it is only my duty
and my finest privilege to use the proper and, if need be, the most
drastic means without fear of consequences. I am convinced that in this
course I have the German princes and the German people firmly behind me.

It is of great significance that precisely at this time, when Bavarians
and Würtembergers, Saxons and Prussians are going into the far East in
order to re-establish the honor of the German flag, your Royal Highness
should have accepted the honor of the _à la suite_ position to the
naval battalion. Just as the house of Wittelsbach took up arms in 1870
to fight for Germany's honor, for her union, and her imperial dignity,
so I hope that the empire may always be assured of the support of this
noble race.

As a representative of this noble house I greet your Royal Highness
with the wish that the close connection which the _à la suite_ position
to my navy now gives you will always maintain your Royal Highness's
interest for our fleet.

I drink to the health of his Royal Highness, Prince Rupprecht of
Bavaria. Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!


BREMEN, JULY 27, 1900

    Events in China touched upon in the speech delivered on December
    15, 1897, had finally brought about the Pekin crisis. Baron von
    Ketteler, the German Minister, had been shot down in the streets on
    June 20.

    The following is one of five speeches which the Emperor delivered
    on the occasion of the departure of the German troops for China.
    This particular one was delivered to the troops at Bremen in the
    presence of the Empress, Princes Eitel Friedrich and Adelbert,
    Chancellor Hohenlohe, Secretary of State von Bülow, Minister
    of War von Gossler, and Lieutenant-General von Bessel. Various
    versions of this speech exist and in many of them the harshness of
    the Emperor's expression has been toned down. We give first the
    version which was printed in the _Reichsanzeiger_, the official
    journal, and which seems to have been somewhat edited. In order
    that the reader may realize more fully the impression conveyed by
    the Emperor's farewell address to his troops, we print under it
    the account which a volunteer of the 1st East Asiatic Regiment of
    infantry sent home to his family.

Great tasks oversea have fallen to the lot of the newly arisen German
Empire, tasks far greater than many of my countrymen have expected. The
character of the German Empire makes it a duty for it to protect its
citizens no matter how far they may have penetrated into foreign lands.
The new German Empire is in a position to discharge the task which
the old Roman Empire of the German Nation could not discharge. The
instrument which makes this possible for us is our army.

In thirty years of faithful and peaceful labor it has been developed
according to the principles of my late grandfather. You too have
received your training according to these principles, and are now
called upon to give proof before the enemy whether or not you have
observed them well. Your comrades of the navy have undergone this
trial; they have shown you that the principles of our training are
good, and I am proud of the praise which has come from the mouths of
foreign leaders, in recognition of the service which your comrades out
there have given. It is now for you to do likewise.

A great task is waiting for you. You are to right the grievous wrong
which has been done. The Chinese have overthrown the law of nations;
in a way which has never been heard of in the history of the world,
they have scorned the duties of hospitality and the sanctity of the
Ambassador. This is the more revolutionary, as this crime was committed
by a nation which is proud of its very ancient culture. Preserve the
old Prussian thoroughness; show yourselves as Christians in joyfully
bearing your trials; may honor and glory follow your flags and weapons!
Give the world an example of manliness and discipline.

You know very well that you are to fight against a cunning, brave,
well-armed, and terrible enemy. If you come to grips with him, be
assured quarter will not be given, no prisoners will be taken. Use your
weapons in such a way that for a thousand years no Chinese shall dare
to look upon a German askance. Show your manliness.

The blessing of God be with you! The prayers of an entire people and my
wishes accompany you, every one. Open the way for culture once for all!

And now take up your journey! Adieu, comrades!

    We here subjoin the account of this speech as given in the letter
    of a volunteer in the 1st East Asiatic Regiment of infantry:

After the Emperor had gone down the front and had greeted separately
every battalion, every division or squadron, he pictured the present
situation in eloquent words and called attention to the fact that no
crime which so cried to Heaven had been recorded in the history of the
world, but he also set in their proper light the difficulties of the
task which we had set for ourselves and emphasized the fact that we
had before us an opponent equal in equipment and fame but ten times
superior in numbers. But, and his words ran about as follows, "you will
and must defeat him with the help of God and, indeed, in such a way
that the Chinese in thousands of years will not presume to raise his
hand against a German"; and his voice became deeply moved and powerful
as he spoke the following words: "On the strength of the oath to the
flag which you have sworn to me I demand that you give no pardon, that
no prisoners be taken, for you shall be the avengers of the abomination
which has been committed in this present time." Then followed certain
words of farewell, and the speech of the Emperor which for me and for
many others will be unforgettably closed with the phrase, "Adieu,

  [Illustration: THE EMPEROR IN 1900]



    _Limes_ was the Latin name for the boundary wall extending for
    about 300 miles from the Rhine to the Danube and separating the
    Roman Empire from the free Germanic peoples. At Saalburg, in the
    Taunus Mountains, there stood on the _Limes_ an old Roman citadel
    which was excavated and restored. The Romanized ceremony at the
    laying of the corner-stone of the Imperial Limes Museum struck
    certain German critics as somewhat theatrical. The guards had been
    drilled to clash their swords on their shields after the manner of
    the Pretorian guards, the rector of the school offered his homage
    in Latin verses, and boys whose hair had been dressed in Roman
    fashion swung their censers. The Emperor's historical references
    here about the relation of Germany to Rome are somewhat one-sided.
    It may be recalled, in connection with the Emperor's remarks about
    Augustus and his salutary influence on Germany, that in the Forest
    of Teutoburg there is a great monument to commemorate the fact that
    the united German tribes, struggling victoriously against this
    "Roman culture which fell so fruitfully upon Germany especially,"
    there annihilated the forces of the general of Augustus, Quintilius

My first thought to-day goes back in solemn gratitude to my father of
everlasting memory, Emperor Frederick III. It is to his creative will
and to his activity that Saalburg owes its restoration.

Just as in the far east of the monarchy at his bidding the powerful
stronghold, which once had implanted German culture into the east,
rearose and is now nearing completion, so, too, here in the beautiful
Taunus Mountains the old Roman citadel has arisen again like a phoenix
from its ashes. It is a testimony to the Roman power, a link in the
great chain which the legions of Rome built about the powerful empire
which, at the bidding of the Roman Emperor Cæsar Augustus alone, forced
its way upon the world and opened the whole world to that Roman
culture which fell so fruitfully upon Germany especially.

With the first blow of my hammer I therefore dedicate this stone to
the memory of Emperor Frederick III; with the second I dedicate it to
German youth, to the generations now growing up who may learn here
in this restored museum what a world-empire means; with the third
I dedicate it to our German Fatherland, to which I hope it will be
granted, through the harmonious co-operation of princes and peoples, of
its armies and its citizens, to become in the future as closely united,
as powerful, and as authoritative as once the Roman world-empire was,
and that, just as in old times they said, "_Civis romanus sum_,"
hereafter, at some time in the future, they will say: "I am a German



    The relationship of the army to the Prussian Kings here referred to
    is treated in chapter I.


To-day, at the celebration which commemorates the two-hundredth
anniversary of our taking over of the royal power of Prussia, my
thoughts are directed first of all to my army. In Prussia the King and
the army belong indissolubly together. This close personal relationship
between me and every single one of my officers and soldiers rests upon
a tradition that dates back 200 years. The spirit which from the time
of Frederick the Great has been fostered in the army by all the Kings,
the spirit of honor, of fidelity to duty, of obedience, of courage,
of chivalry has made the army what it is and what it ought to be, the
sharp, reliable weapon in the hand of her Kings for the protection and
the blessing of the Fatherland's greatness.

To serve the Fatherland at the head of the army, that is my will and
that also was the foremost wish of all my predecessors. It is to their
care that the army owes its power and the consideration which it
enjoys. For 200 years she has proven true the sentence of the great
King: "The world does not rest upon the shoulders of Atlas any more
securely than the Prussian state upon the shoulders of the army!" It
has sealed with its blood its love and gratitude for its Kings!

For all this I thank the army deeply. I thank it for the devotion which
it has unselfishly shown me and my house year in and year out, in its
unceasing service for the Fatherland. So long as this spirit binds the
army to its Kings, so long we need fear no storms; and Prussia's eagle
will proudly pursue its lofty and undeflected flight for the good of
Prussia, for the good of Germany! May God grant us this!

                                                      WILLIAM, I. R.



MARCH 28, 1901

    On the 6th of March the Emperor had been struck in the face by a
    piece of iron hurled at him by an irresponsible youth, Weiland, in
    the streets of Bremen. It was doubtless this incident coupled with
    the increasing strength of the Social Democrats that made him think
    of the possibility of an uprising and deliver the following address
    to the population of Berlin. The Social Democrats and many others
    resented his suggesting the possibility of turning the troops
    upon the citizens. We give first Penzler's more or less official
    account of the speech as it appeared in the _Kreuzzeitung_. If the
    extract which we quote from Doctor Liman's work "Der Kaiser" may be
    considered at all authentic, the speech seems to have been somewhat
    edited before publication.


To-day a new period in your history begins. May the spirit of the
memories which you leave behind you in the old barracks live on in
your new home. They are memories of beautiful days of peace and of
fierce days of conflict. Like a firm bulwark, your new barracks stand
in the neighborhood of the palace, which it is primarily your duty to
be ever ready to defend. The Emperor Alexander Regiment is called upon
in a sense to stand ready as body-guard by night and by day and, if
necessary, to risk its life and its blood for the King and his house;
and if ever again (the Emperor here called to mind the faithful bearing
of the Alexander Regiment at the time of the revolts against the King
in 1848) a time like this should reappear in this city, a time of
uprising against the King, then I am convinced the Alexander Regiment
will be able energetically to force back into bounds any impertinence
and rebelliousness against its royal master.[32]

[32] This last sentence reads as follows in Doctor Liman's work:
     "But if the city should ever again presume to rise up against
     its master then will the regiment repress with the bayonet the
     impertinence of the people toward their King." Doctor Liman states
     that it was currently reported that this sentiment had been
     expressed in phrases which were even more objectionable to the
     citizens who were standing outside the circle of soldiers.

I hope that a brilliant and beautiful existence may be in store for
the regiment in its new home, and that such an existence will be
reserved for it in the future. May it cherish above all things its
memories of its earlier leaders and its enduring relationships to
them. These memories can only be fostered through courage, fidelity,
and unconditional obedience. And if this old spirit lives on in the
regiment then must its acts always win for it the satisfaction of its
royal master.

    (After the banquet in the officers' mess the Emperor turned over to
    them a large painting of the Alexander Regiment on the evening of
    the battle of St. Privat. The official report gives the Emperor's
    speech partly in his own words and partly in summary.)

He was convinced that the officers had brought the old spirit into
their new quarters, and that they would continue to foster it. He, too,
on his side, wished to contribute something to the decoration of their
new home, and to this end had chosen an episode out of the victorious
history of the regiment, and in doing so he wished to carry out a wish
of the officers.

"In most of the pictures based upon the martial history of Prussia the
Prussian troops are represented in victorious advance when, under their
powerful shock, they are overthrowing the enemy. I thought it fitting
for once to have the Prussian toughness and endurance on the defensive
represented in the battle of a smaller body against an overwhelmingly
superior force. The picture represents how a small number from the
Alexander Regiment defended themselves with heroic spirit against an
entire brigade and finally victoriously repulsed it. My grandfather
expressed to the body-guard as a whole his gratitude for its brave
conduct in the face of the enemy and for all its heroic deeds. I am
firmly convinced that the officers of the Alexander Regiment will
always be mindful of its task, seeing that it educates soldiers for
the one moment when it is a question of sealing with their life-blood
their fidelity toward King and Fatherland. This consciousness gives
me the certainty that we shall conquer everywhere, even though we be
surrounded by enemies on all sides; for there lives a powerful ally,
the old, good God[33] in heaven, who, ever since the time of the Great
Elector and of the great King, has always been on our side."

[33] _Der alte, gute Gott._


APRIL 24, 1901

    Emperor William had himself been a student at Bonn. On this day the
    Crown Prince was matriculated at that university and in the evening
    the students held a _Festkommers_, a kind of banquet of the student
    societies, at which the Emperor appeared with the Crown Prince
    and his brother-inlay, Prince Adolph von Schaumburg-Lippe. After
    singing two student songs, the student leader of the _Kommers_,
    "Studiosus" von Alvensleben, greeted the Emperor with a speech
    of welcome. In this friendly gathering the Emperor took occasion
    to discuss the history of the empire and especially the reasons
    for the failure of the older empire because of its cosmopolitan
    character. The new empire must be based upon a recognition of the
    characteristic German traits and will be possible only through the
    whole-hearted support of the constituent states of the realm.

I do not need to emphasize or even to mention to you, my dear young
comrades, what emotions thrill my heart at finding myself again among
students in beautiful Bonn. There unrolls before my mind's eye the
glimmering picture of sunshine and happy contentment with which the
period of my own sojourn here was filled. It was the joy of living, joy
in people old and young, and, above all things, joy in the development
of the young German Empire!

It is therefore my wish at this moment, when I place my dear son among
you, that he, too, may have as happy a time as a student as was once
vouchsafed to me. And, indeed, how could it be otherwise? For Bonn,
the lovely city, is so accustomed to the presence of young men full of
life and seems by nature to have been designed to no other end. Here
the Crown Prince will find memories of his glorious grandfather who
could not forget Bonn--his kindly eyes brightened whenever the name of
the city which had become so dear to him was mentioned--memories of
his great-grandfather, the noble prince consort, the companion of that
now sanctified royal lady,[34] who always strove to maintain a peaceful
and friendly relationship between her people and ours, which are both
of German stock--memories of many another noble German prince who here
prepared himself for his later career.

[34] Queen Victoria.

But even more than that--Bonn is situated on the Rhine; it is here
that our grapes are gathered; our legends cluster about it, and every
castle, every city, speaks to us of our past. The magic of Father Rhine
will certainly exercise its power upon the Crown Prince likewise. And
when you joyfully pass the cup and sing a new song, then I hope that
your spirits may rise and enjoy the beautiful moments as becomes happy
German youths! But may the source from which you draw your joys be as
clear and pure as the golden juice of the grape, may it be deep and
constant as Father Rhine! If we look about us in the joyous Rhineland,
our history rises up before us in very palpable form. You may well
rejoice that you are young Germans, as you travel through the stretch
from Aix to Mainz, that is, from Charlemagne to the time of Germany's
splendor under Barbarossa.

But why did all this glory come to naught? Why did the German Empire
dwindle away? Because the old empire was not founded upon a strictly
national basis. The universality idea of the old Roman Empire of the
German Nation did not admit of any development in the spirit of German
nationality. The life of a nation depends upon its frontiers, upon
the personality of its people, and upon its racial traits. And so the
glory of Barbarossa had to fail, and the old imperial structure had to
fall, because through its idea of universality it hindered the process
of crystallization which might have made it a rounded and completed
nation; for the smaller units crystallized into the form of powerful
principalities and laid the foundation for new states. But through
this process their rulers unfortunately came into conflict with the
empire and the Emperor, who dreamed of universal dominion, and internal
peace was lost to the ever weakening empire. Unfortunately, at the
head of this chapter in the development of our German people we must
write the telling words of Tacitus, that great student of Germany:
"_Propter invidiam_." The princes were envious of the power of the
Emperors, just as once they were envious of the power of Arminius in
spite of his victory. The nobility was envious of the cities which had
become wealthy, and the peasant was envious of the noble. What unhappy
consequences and what grievous woes our dear and beautiful Germany had
to suffer "_propter invidiam_"! The shores of Father Rhine can tell you
long stories about this. But finally God allowed one to accomplish what
before had been impossible. Aix and Mainz are for us historic memories;
the longing to be brought together into a single nation remained in
the German breast, and Emperor William the Great, in union with his
faithful servants, achieved it. So cast your eyes from Coblentz to the
German Eck and from Rüdesheim to the Niederwald! The pictures teach and
prove to you that you are now Germans in a German land, citizens of a
definitely bounded German nation. You are here to prepare yourselves to
contribute to her future welfare and development. In its proud flower
the empire stands before you. May you be filled with joy and grateful
happiness, and may you be thrilled with the firm and manly resolve, as
Germans, to give your service to Germany, to support, strengthen, and
elevate her! The future waits for you and will need your strength;
it does not expect that you will waste it in idle cosmopolitan dreams
or enlist it in the service of selfish party tendencies, but that you
will devote it to strengthening the national idea and our own ideals.
Powerful, indeed, are the intellectual heroes which the Germanic stock,
through the grace of God, has produced, from the time of Boniface
and Walter von der Vogelweide to Goethe and Schiller; and they have
become a light and blessing to all humanity. Their influence was
exerted universally, and yet they were strictly Germans, set apart by
themselves; that is, personalities, men. We need them to-day more than
ever. May you strive to become such as they were!

But how is this to be possible, and who is to help you? Only one, our
Lord and Saviour, whose name we all bear and who has borne our sins and
redeemed us, has provided us with an example, and labored as we are to
labor. He has implanted moral earnestness in you so that the springs of
your activity may remain pure and that your aims may be lofty! The love
of father and mother, of the ancestral home and Fatherland, is rooted
in the love for Him. Then will you be provided with a charm against
temptations of every sort, above all against pride and envy, and you
can sing and say: "We Germans fear God, nothing else in this world."
Then will we stand firm and spread culture through the world, and I
shall close my eyes in peace if I see such generations growing up and
gathered about my son. Then "_Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles!_"
With this prospect in mind I call out: Long live the University of Bonn!


HAMBURG, JUNE 18, 1901

    From his childhood the Emperor has been fond of the sea. Most
    of his vacations have been taken aboard his famous yacht
    _Hohenzollern_, and almost every year he has been an enthusiastic
    spectator, and occasionally participant, in the regattas on the
    Elbe. On this occasion the steam-yacht _Prinzessin Victoria
    Luise_ was placed at his disposition by the directors of the
    Hamburg-American Line. He is using his famous phrase, "a place in
    the sun" with reference to the happy outcome of events in China,
    for on May 27 of this year China had finally accepted the terms
    of the powers. Of the 90,000 men sent by the powers, Germany had
    furnished 22,000, and the general direction of the expedition had
    been intrusted to the German general Von Waldersee. Ballin, of the
    Hamburg-American Line, had acquired 3,000 feet of water-front and
    had leased for twenty-five years most of the landings of a Chinese
    navigation company. The Emperor's speech was delivered in reply to
    one by Burgomaster Mönckeberg of Hamburg.

I offer my heartiest thanks for the eloquent address of your
Magnificence. I express to you and all comrades on the water the
pleasure which I feel that I should once more be allowed to appear
among you and take part in the races of the North German Regatta

His Magnificence, in his short and pregnant speech, gave us as good and
beautiful a picture as possible of the development of our Fatherland
during recent years in the field of water sports and of our relations
to foreign countries. It will be my sole task for the future to see
to it that the seeds which have been sown may develop in peace and

In spite of the fact that we have no such fleet as we should have, we
have conquered for ourselves a place in the sun. It will now be my task
to see to it that this place in the sun shall remain our undisputed
possession, in order that the sun's rays may fall fruitfully upon our
activity and trade in foreign parts, that our industry and agriculture
may develop within the state and our sailing sports upon the water,
for our future lies upon the water. The more Germans go out upon the
waters, whether it be in the races of regattas, whether it be in
journeys across the ocean, or in the service of the battle-flag, so
much the better will it be for us. For when the German has once learned
to direct his glance upon what is distant and great, the pettiness
which surrounds him in daily life on all sides will disappear. Whoever
wishes to have this larger and freer outlook can find no better place
than one of the Hanseatic cities. What we have learned out of the
previous history of our development amounts really to what I already
pointed out when I sent my brother to the East Asiatic station (Dec.
15, 1897). We have merely drawn the logical conclusions from the
work which was left us by Emperor William the Great, my memorable
grandfather, and the great man whose monument we have recently
unveiled.[35] These consequences lie in the fact that we are now making
our efforts to do what, in the old time, the Hanseatic cities could
not accomplish, because they lacked the vivifying and protecting power
of the empire. May it be the function of my Hansa during many years of
peace to protect and advance commerce and trade!

[35] Bismarck.

In the events which have taken place in China I see the indication that
European peace is assured for many years to come; for the achievements
of the particular contingents have brought about a mutual respect and
feeling of comradeship that can only serve the furtherance of peace.
But in this period of peace I hope that our Hanseatic cities will
flourish. Our new Hansa will open new paths and create and conquer new
markets for them.

As head of the empire I therefore rejoice over every citizen, whether
from Hamburg, Bremen, or Lübeck, who goes forth with this large outlook
and seeks new points where we can drive in the nail on which to hang
our armor. Therefore, I believe that I express the feeling of all your
hearts when I recognize gratefully that the director of this company
who has placed at our disposal the wonderful ship which bears my
daughter's name has gone forth as a courageous servant of the Hansa, in
order to make for us friendly conquests whose fruits will be gathered
by our descendants.

In the joyful hope that this enterprising Hanseatic spirit may be
spread even further, I raise my glass and ask all of those who are my
comrades upon the water to join with me in a cheer for sailing and the
Hanseatic spirit!


KIEL, JUNE 20, 1901

    Because of his activity in founding the Brandenburg fleet, a
    monument was erected to the Great Elector at Kiel. His history has
    been touched upon in chapter I. In connection with the services
    of the Dutch admirals it is interesting to note that one of the
    Emperor's heroes was the God-fearing Dutch admiral De Ruyter,
    who always offered prayers before battle. The Emperor once laid
    a wreath upon his grave, and to-day on board the battle-ships
    the Dutch prayer before going into action is often read by the
    chaplains of the navy.

    What extraordinary progress has been made in naval matters
    under the Emperor we may judge when we remember that before the
    Franco-Prussian War there were in Germany no construction bureaus
    and no wharves in which cruisers could be built. The first armored
    cruisers, _König Wilhelm_, _Kronprinz_, _Friedrich Karl_, were
    bought from England and France. In thirty years Germany has here
    achieved not only complete independence but something approaching
    very nearly to supremacy. His service in this field has been
    generally recognized. A German critic not usually favorable to the
    Emperor speaks thus: "Perhaps nowhere in the development of our
    political life does the personal activity of the Emperor stand out
    so strongly as in the building up of the German fleet. From the
    beginning he has displayed so much energy and perseverance, in
    this respect, and has so emphatically carried his will into effect
    that history will certainly credit him with a great and unique

    At the unveiling of the monument to the Great Elector, the founder
    of the German navy, the Emperor spoke as follows:

Downtrodden fields, desolate plains, razed villages, disease, poverty,
and misery; these were the conditions in the sandy mark when the
young Elector in his earliest youth was called to the throne by the
sudden death of his father. Truly, no enviable heritage; a task that
called for a man who was mature, experienced, and conversant with all
branches, and one which, even so, might have proved too difficult.

Undismayed, the young man entered upon his mission, and with wonderful
ability he succeeded in discharging it. With an iron energy, keeping
the goal which he had once set for himself ever before his eyes,
allowing nothing to turn him aside, the Elector raised up and
strengthened his country, put his people in a position to defend
themselves, freed his borders of enemies, and soon acquired for himself
such a position that the contemporary world, and even his enemies, gave
him while still living that title, "The Great," which in other cases a
grateful people only bestows after an arduous life of service upon a
departed ruler.

And this youth who grew up to powerful manhood, who had directed his
country in this work, was the first prince who called our attention to
the sea; he was the founder of the Brandenburg fleet.

If the German fleet, then, sets up a monument to him, and if her
officers and crews educate themselves and learn steadfastness of
purpose by looking at his statue, they are merely discharging their
honorable duty. God had so disposed that the Elector should pass his
youth in the Netherlands and learn to foster and appreciate labor,
industry, foreign relationships, and the advantages of trade. He
carried over into his own country what he had acquired among that
industrious and simple folk of seafarers who come from German stock. At
that time it was, indeed, a most important decision, and one which at
first his subjects and contemporaries could hardly understand.

Under his powerful will and protection, and in the hands of tried
Netherlanders, the Admiral Raule and his brother, the Brandenburg fleet
flourished. Only after the death of the Elector did his creation fall
to decay. They were not destined to harvest the fruits of their labor.
His successors in power had first to establish through battles their
rights, in order to have a voice in the world and to be allowed to
rule, undisturbed and in peace, the people within their borders. As a
result, our eyes were turned from the sea again in order that after
centuries of fierce conflict the mark and Prussia might finally be
welded together.

Thus, through the guidance of God and through the labors of the
successors of the Great Elector, the power of his house was founded
on that firm foundation and with the corner-stone which he had laid.
It was this princely power that made it possible for the house of
Hohenzollern to take up the German imperial dignity. They founded that
dynastic power which the German Emperor must have in order to be in a
position to care for and protect powerfully the welfare of the empire
everywhere and to force its opponents to respect its flag.

His monument now stands before the academy. That younger generation to
whom the future belongs, which is to cultivate the seeds that we have
sown and to reap the harvest of our labors, may now direct its gaze
toward this prince and be edified by his example.

He was God-fearing and stern, inflexibly stern toward himself and
toward others; he trusted firmly in God and allowed God to direct him,
undismayed by any reverse or by any disappointment; as a Christian, he
looked upon these merely as trials sent him from on high. In this way
the Great Elector lived his life, and this is the example which we are
to follow. The motto which made it possible for him never to lose his
hope and courage, in spite of all vexations, in spite of all reverses
and all grievous experiences and trials, was the red thread which ran
through his life and which is expressed in his phrase: "_Domine, fac me
scire viam, quam ambulem._"

May this be true also of the officers and crews of my navy! So long
as we work on this basis we can overcome, undismayed, every grievous
phase in the development of the navy and of our Fatherland which God's
providence may have in store for us. Let that be the way that you shall
go! Let that be the foundation on which my navy is built up! This will
enable you to conquer in battle and to endure all vexations until the
sun again breaks forth from the clouds.

I therefore turn over this new monument to the navy. May she protect,
cherish, and honor it, so that in the future she may develop characters
which are like his who now stands before her! Let the monument be


JULY 7, 1901

    The second son of the Emperor took up his service in the 1st
    Infantry Regiment of the Guard on the completion of his eighteenth
    year. On this occasion, in the presence of many princes, officers
    of the army, and military attachés, the Emperor turned over his son
    to the regiment with the following words:

My second son, Prince Eitel Friedrich of Prussia, having applied
himself eagerly to his studies, has now, according to the verdict of
his superiors, passed his examination with a "good." His childish
years lie behind him, and to-day he takes up the tasks of life for
which he has prepared himself--his foremost task the defense of the
Fatherland--his noblest weapon the sword, his noblest uniform the
Prussian soldier's uniform, the uniform of my 1st Infantry Regiment of
the Guard.

The qualities which the Prince has shown in the course of his youthful
development, as well as his oath, are a pledge to me that he will be
a thoroughgoing officer and a faithful servant of his Fatherland.
Particularly gifted for the military life, with a quick eye for detail,
the Prince, as soon as he has passed his examination as an officer,
will in the ranks of the regiment devote himself actively to the
service for which he longs.

Although still very youthful, he should, nevertheless, be an example
of earnestness, an example in observing all military rules, an example
above all as an officer and man. I can think of nothing more beautiful
than this, that he may be an earnest officer who turns an experienced
eye upon life, unbending as iron in everything which constitutes the
chivalry of the officer's position, stern with himself and maintaining
in strictest self-control the traditions of his house and of this great
regiment. May he go his way untroubled by voices from without, with his
eye firmly fixed upon his goal, and responsible only to his God and to
his father!

But the regiment in which I have now enrolled my second son gives me
the assurance that the young Prince will grow up in an environment,
where from all sides the glorious traditions of Prussian history in
good and evil days will be brought before him. The grenadiers of this
regiment will be fully conscious of the honor which is bestowed upon
them through the fact that once more a young Hohenzollern takes his
place under her flag.

My son, I wish you happiness of this day. Up to the present you have
given me joy, and from this time forth I hope that you will experience
joy in the life and the work which lies before you. Step into the ranks
and draw your sword!



    The family of the Hohenzollerns has possessed undoubted genius
    in many lines. Frederick the Great and the Emperor's great-uncle
    Frederick William IV were particularly gifted on the artistic
    side. The present Emperor, whose versatility is amazing, has taken
    a particular interest in things literary and artistic, and has
    himself occasionally assumed the rôle of creative artist. The
    symbolic picture, representing the coming of the "Yellow Peril,"
    which he is said to have painted for the Czar, caused much comment,
    mostly unfavorable.[36] He has, however, assumed a prominent if not
    a decisive rôle in directing sculpture, painting, and drama in his
    capital. Just as he has directed modifications in battle-ships,
    so also he has directed modifications in public buildings. As he
    is in a position to distribute rewards, his advice is frequently
    accepted without question. The following anecdote, told by a
    prominent German architect and recounted by a recent writer, may
    serve as an illustration: Drawings for a new church in Berlin were
    submitted to the Emperor for assent or correction. His Majesty,
    intending to make a marginal remark, with regard to the cross on
    the top of the steeple, put a letter for reference above the cross
    and drew a straight line from the letter down to the cross. Having
    changed his mind, he drew an X vigorously through the letter. When
    the architect received his plans again he studied carefully all
    the Emperor's corrections, but mistook the cancelled letter for a
    star. Knowing better than to ask questions, he built the church
    and put a big star on a huge iron pole above the top of the cross.
    This strange excrescence was in existence a few years ago and is
    probably still visible.

    [36] "Emperor William, one of the most comical persons of our
         time, orator, poet, musician, dramatic writer, and artist,
         and, above all, patriot, has lately painted a picture
         representing all the nations of Europe with swords, standing
         at the seashore and, at the indication of Archangel Michael,
         looking at the sitting figures of Buddha and Confucius in the
         distance. According to William's intention, this should mean
         that the nations of Europe ought to unite in order to defend
         themselves against the peril which is proceeding from there.
         He is quite right from his coarse, pagan, patriotic point of
         view, which is eighteen hundred years behind the times. The
         European nations, forgetting Christ, have in the name of their
         patriotism more and more irritated these peaceful nations and
         have taught them patriotism and war, and have now irritated
         them so much that, indeed, if Japan and China will as fully
         forget the teachings of Buddha and of Confucius as we have
         forgotten the teachings of Christ, they will soon learn the
         art of killing people (they learn these things quickly, as
         Japan has proved), and, being fearless, agile, strong, and
         populous, they will inevitably very soon make of the countries
         of Europe, if Europe does not invent something stronger than
         guns and Edison's inventions, what the countries of Europe
         are making of Africa. 'The disciple is not above his master:
         but every one that is perfect shall be as his master' (Luke

    It is a curious fact that for all the Emperor's insistence upon
    what might be called nationalism, in artistic matters at least,
    in poetry, sculpture, and the drama, he has very little sympathy
    with the modern German tendencies. Klinger and Stuck, Ludwig von
    Hofmann and Thoma have found no favor, and no attention was paid to
    Böcklin. His literary preferences will become more evident after a
    reading of his talk with Ganghofer (November 12, 1906).

    In the matter of sculpture, the achievement in which the Emperor
    takes most pride is undoubtedly the famous Siegesallee in Berlin.
    It consists of a number of monumental, heroic figures taken from
    the history of his house. The avenue, the general scheme, and the
    arrangement of many of the figures were planned by him, and the
    figures were chosen in consultation with his historiographer. The
    style is supposedly classic; there are many incidental animal
    figures, and a sphinx and the sibyl help to represent Bismarck. The
    attempt to make heroic and classic certain of the fairly mediocre
    representatives of his line, like Albrecht, Otto and John, Joachim,
    Frederick, and George William, seems to have been too difficult
    a task even for that Berlin school of sculpture, which the
    Emperor feels would bear comparison with that of the Renaissance.
    Notwithstanding his own efforts to awaken art "from the cold sleep
    of unculture," it is perhaps significant that powerful, independent
    personalities, Michelangelos in sculpture and Bismarcks in
    politics, do not seem to thrive under the Emperor's protection.

This eighteenth day of December has a certain significance in the
history of our art here in Berlin, from the fact that that revered
protector of the Muses, my late father, and my mother, who was so
gifted in the arts, dedicated on that day, fifteen years ago, the
Anthropological Museum. This was in a way the last great closing act
which my father accomplished in this direction, and I look upon it as a
special piece of good fortune that it is on precisely this day of the
year that the works for the Siegesallee could be completed.

I seize with joy the opportunity to express to you all, first, my
congratulations and, secondly, my thanks for the way and manner
in which you have helped me to carry out my original plan. The
accomplishment of the programme for the Siegesallee has required a
number of years, and it was the able historiographer of my house,
Professor Doctor Koser, who put me in a position to assign to the
gentlemen the tasks which it was possible for them to carry out.

Once we had found the historical basis, it was possible to go ahead;
and after the choice of the princes was decided upon, then the most
competent men in the way of historical research were found to help the
gentlemen in their work. In this way the groups were conceived, and,
conditioned to a certain degree by history, they gradually took form.

After this part of the work was done, then, naturally, came the
hardest question of all: Would it be possible, as I hoped, to find
enough artists in Berlin who would be in a position to give themselves
entirely to the execution of this programme?

I had in mind when I approached the solution of this problem, if I
were successful, to show to the world what I considered to be the most
advantageous method of solving an artistic question of this character.
The best way to go about it, I believe, consists not in the appointment
of commissions, not in the establishment of all possible kinds of prize
contests and competitions, but in following the old established method
which they used in classical times and also later in the Middle Ages.
In this way, the direct intercourse between the employer and the artist
offers a security for the favorable shaping of the work and for the
successful accomplishment of the task.

I am especially indebted in this particular to Professor Rheinhold
Begas in that, when I went to him with these thoughts, he made it clear
to me without further ceremony that there was absolutely no doubt but
that there were enough artists of all kinds in Berlin to carry out
such an idea without difficulty. With his help and on the basis of
friendships formed in the circle of sculptors here through visits to
exhibitions and studios I did, indeed, succeed in getting together
a staff with which to proceed in carrying out this task--a staff the
greater part of which I see gathered about me here to-day.

I believe that you will not deny that I have made the execution of the
programme developed by me as easy as possible for you. I have placed
the task before you and limited it in a general way, but for the rest
I have given you absolute freedom, not only freedom in the combination
and composition but precisely that freedom to put into it a certain
amount of yourselves--a thing that every artist must do in order to put
his own stamp upon his work; for every work of art contains within it a
kernel of the artist's own character. I believe that this experiment,
if I may call it so, through which the Siegesallee was completed, dare
be looked upon as a success.

Although interviews have been necessary between me and the artists
who were carrying out the work in order to settle every doubt and to
answer every question, no difficulties of a more serious nature have
shown themselves. I believe, therefore, that from this point of view
we can look back upon the Siegesallee with general satisfaction. You
have individually solved your problems as you saw fit, and I, on my
side, have the feeling that I have allowed you the fullest measure of
freedom and time--a thing I hold to be necessary for the artist. I have
never gone into details and have contented myself with giving merely
the direction, the impulse.

But it fills me with pride and joy to-day when I think that Berlin
stands before the whole world with a body of artists who are capable
of carrying out such a magnificent work. It proves that the Berlin
school of sculpture stands at a height such as could hardly have been
surpassed even in the time of the Renaissance. And I think every one
of you will agree, without jealousy, that the effective example of
Rheinhold Begas and his conception, based upon his knowledge of the
antique, has been a guide to many of you in the working out of this
great task.

Here, also, we could draw a parallel between the great achievements in
the art of the Middle Ages and of the Italians; since in that time,
also, the sovereign and art-loving prince who offered the commissions
to the artists at the same time found the masters, about whom a crowd
of young disciples gathered, so that a certain school was in this way
developed which was able to accomplish remarkable things.

Now, gentlemen, the Pergamon Museum has also been opened on this same
day, in Berlin. I regard that, too, as a very important portion of
our art history and as a good omen and a happy coincidence. A more
magnificent collection cannot be imagined than the abundance of beauty
which is displayed in these rooms before the eyes of the astonished

But how does art stand in the world to-day? It takes its examples and
creates out of the great sources of Mother Nature; and Nature, in spite
of her great, apparently boundless, limitless freedom, acts according
to everlasting laws which the Creator has set for Himself and which
can never be infringed upon or overstepped without endangering the
development of the world.

It is the same in art. And in looking upon the magnificent remains
from the old classic period we experience the same feeling. Here, too,
an eternal, unchanging law rules; the law of beauty and harmony--of
æsthetics. This law was expressed by the ancients in so surprising and
powerful a manner and in so complete a form that we, for all our modern
perceptions and our power of accomplishment, are proud if it can be
said of some very especially good piece of work: "That is almost as
good as if it had been done 1900 years ago."

"Almost!" Under this impression I shall ask you to take this injunction
to heart. Sculpture has for the most part remained free from the
so-called modern tendencies and influences; it still stands high
and sublime. Keep it so; do not let yourselves be led astray by the
judgment of men and by all sorts of windy doctrines to give up these
great principles upon which it is based.

An art which oversteps the laws and boundaries which I have indicated
is no longer art; it is factory work, it is trade; and that no art dare
become. Through the much-misused word "freedom" and under her flag
one often falls into indefiniteness, boundlessness, conceit. However,
he who cuts loose from the law of beauty and from the feeling for
æsthetics and harmony which, whether he can express it or not, every
man feels in his heart; he who thinks the chief thing is to turn his
thoughts in a certain direction toward a definite solution of more
technical problems, sins against the very sources of his art.

Furthermore, art must help to educate the people; it must also give the
lower classes, after their cramping exertions, the opportunity to right
themselves again through ideals. To us, the German people, great ideals
are a lasting possession, while with other peoples they have been more
or less lost. It is now the German people whose special province it
is to protect these great ideas, to foster them, to set them forth;
and to these ideas belongs the duty of giving to those classes who
tire themselves out through labor the opportunity to raise themselves
through beautiful things and to work themselves out of and above their
ordinary circles of thought.

If, however, art, as often happens nowadays, does nothing more than to
make misery even more hideous than it already is, then it sins against
the German people. The fostering of the ideal is the greatest work
of culture; and if we wish to be and to remain a pattern in this for
other peoples, then we must all work together; and if culture is to
accomplish its full task, then it must penetrate through to the very
lowest strata of the people. That it can only do if art lends a hand,
if it raises up instead of drawing down into the gutter.

As ruler, I often feel very bitter that art, through her masters,
should not be energetic enough to make a stand against such tendencies.
I do not doubt for a moment but that many an earnest but misguided
character, perhaps filled with the best intentions, is to be found
among the devotees of this tendency. The real artist needs no
advertising, no press, no connections. I do not believe that your great
examples in the realm of science, either in ancient Greece or in Italy
or in the time of the Renaissance, used any such methods as are now
often practised through the press to bring their ideas especially into
the foreground. They worked as God directed them; for the rest they
allowed the world to criticise.

And that is the way an honorable, sincere artist must act. Art which
stoops to advertising is no longer art, were it praised to the skies.
Every one, be he never so simple, has a feeling for that which is
beautiful or ugly, and it is to foster this feeling further among
the people that I have need of all of you; and that you should have
accomplished such a piece of work in the Siegesallee, I, therefore,
thank you particularly.

I may now confide something to you. The impression which the
Siegesallee makes upon foreigners is quite overwhelming; everywhere
an immense respect for German sculpture is noticeable. May you remain
standing upon these heights; may also my children and my grandchildren,
if they shall one day be granted to me, keep the same masters by their
side! Then, I am convinced, our people will be in a position to love
the beautiful and to hold high the ideal.

I raise my glass and drink to the health of all of you; and, once more,
my heartiest thanks.


APRIL 20, 1902

    A monument was erected to the famous cavalry general Von Rosenberg,
    in Hanover. After the unveiling of the monument the Emperor
    responded to Count von Waldersee's toast as follows:

To-day I greet all the cavalry of the German army. Even from his grave
the general's personality has issued so magic and so powerful an appeal
that it has called the horsemen together from all quarters of the
German Empire and from the contingents of my affiliated rulers, so that
to-day for the first time our German cavalry is gathered together in a
single great cohort.

We wish to draw a lesson from this day. As the general recognized only
his service and the call of duty, may we do likewise! The highest
reward that can come to an officer through his service in life is to
fill his position to his own complete satisfaction. Looking back over
the life of General von Rosenberg, we can compose a proverb which
should apply to us also, now and for all time: "Know your aim, and then
exert every effort." Let that be the standard for our cavalry!

So may we also create for ourselves from this simple monument a symbol
and an example. A block of granite from the mark bears the features of
the general inlaid in bronze; so may we hedge and protect that piece of
granite of our army which we call the cavalry and allow it to harden,
so that he who bites upon it may lose his teeth![37]

[37] A phrase of Frederick the Great which Count Bülow had used in the
     Reichstag January 8, 1902, in speaking of the English Colonial
     Secretary Chamberlain's attack on the German army.

With this wish I raise my glass and drink to the memory of the general,
to the German cavalry, and to its most conspicuous representative, the
General Field-Marshal, Count von Waldersee. Hurrah!


AIX, JUNE 19, 1902

    The Emperor, accepting an invitation from the city, came to Aix
    with the Empress and the Crown Prince. It was here that Charlemagne
    was probably born and here that he died. The present Rathaus was
    built upon the ruins of his palace, and it was in the so-called
    Coronation Room that the Emperor delivered his address.

In the name of her Majesty, the Empress, and in my name I thank you
particularly for the indescribably patriotic and enthusiastic reception
which has been prepared for us by all classes of the city of Aix. I
earnestly desired to visit the city of Aix, and I thank you for the
opportunity which you have given me through your invitation.

Who would not be deeply moved on such historic ground as that of Aix
by the breath and murmur of the past and of the present? Who would not
think of the providential guidance of Heaven as he looks back over the
history of the centuries which our Fatherland has lived through in its
connection with Aix?

Aix is the cradle of German imperialism, for it was here that
Charlemagne erected his throne, and the city of Aix shone in his
reflected glory. So important, so imposing was the figure of this
great German prince that from Rome the dignity of the Roman Cæsars was
bestowed upon him, and he was chosen to enter into the inheritance
of the _Imperium Romanum_--certainly a splendid recognition of the
capability of our German stock as it appeared for the first time
in history. For the Roman sceptre had fallen from the hands of the
Cæsars and their successors. Crumbling and decayed, the Roman edifice
was tottering to its fall, and only the appearance of the victorious
Germans with their virtuous dispositions made it possible to point a
new and as yet untrodden road for the history of the world. It goes
without saying that the mighty Charles, the great King of the Franks,
drew upon himself the gaze of Rome which looked to him as to its
bulwark and protector.

But the task of combining the office of Roman Emperor with the dignity
and burden of the German King was too severe. What he was able to
accomplish through his powerful personality Fate denied to his
followers; and through their desire for a world-empire, the Emperors
of the later generations lost sight of the German people and country.
They turned toward the south in order to maintain the world-empire, and
in so doing forgot the Germans. So gradually our German country and
people perished.

Just as the blossoming aloe gathers up all the strength of the plant
for this task and, striving upward, develops flower on flower and
fascinates the eye of the astonished beholder, while the plant itself
withers and its roots shrivel away, so it was with the Roman Empire of
the German Nation.

Another empire has now arisen. The German people are now blessed with
another Emperor, whom they had themselves gone out to seek. Sword in
hand, on the field of battle, the crown was won, and the flag of the
empire flutters high in the breeze once more. With the same enthusiasm
and love with which the German people held to the imperial idea has
the new empire entered into being; but the tasks are now different.
Limited from without by the boundaries of our country, it became our
duty to steel ourselves from within in preparation for the duties which
were then laid upon our people and which could not be discharged in the
Middle Ages.

And so we see the empire, although still young, growing strong within
itself from year to year, while confidence in it is becoming more and
more secure on every side. The powerful German army, however, affords
a support to the peace of Europe. In keeping with the character of
the Germans, we limit ourselves from without in order to remain free
within. Far away over the sea our speech is spreading, and far away
flows the stream of our knowledge and research. There is no work in the
realm of later research which is not written in our language, and no
thought is born of science which is not first utilized by us in order
later to be taken over by other nations. And this is that world-empire
which the German spirit strives for. If we, then, wish to discharge
adequately our further great responsibilities, we dare not forget that
the foundation on which the empire was built is based upon simplicity
and the fear of God as well as the lofty moral conceptions of our
ancestors. Heavily, indeed, was the hand of our God laid upon us at the
beginning of the previous century, and mighty was the arm of Providence
which shaped the steel and welded it in the furnace of misery until the
weapon was finished.

And so I expect of you all that, whether churchmen or laymen, you will
help me to maintain religion among the people. We must work together in
order to preserve the moral foundations and the healthy strength of the
German stock. But that can only be done if we preserve its religion,
and this is true equally of Catholics and Protestants.

I am, therefore, the more pleased to-day, to bring to the leaders of
the church who are here represented a bit of news of which I am proud
to be the bearer. Beside me stands General von Loë, a faithful servant
of his Kings. He was sent to Rome to the jubilee of the Holy Father,
and when he delivered to him my gift and my congratulations and in
private conversation had explained how things stood in our German
country the Holy Father answered him that he was happy to be able to
say that he had always thought highly of the piety of the Germans and
of the German army; he said he could even go further and commissioned
General von Loë to report the following to his Emperor: The German
Empire is the only[38] country in Europe in which training, order, and
discipline rule, in which respect for authority and reverence for
the church exist, and in which every Catholic can live freely and
undisturbed in his faith, and for this he thanked the German Emperor.

[38] The word "only" has not received official sanction, but is printed
     by Penzler.

This, gentlemen, justifies me in saying that both our churches,
standing side by side, must forever have before their eyes the idea of
strengthening and preserving the fear of God and respect for religion.
The fact that we are modern men and that we work in this or that field
makes no difference. Whoever does not base his life upon religion is

And as it is fitting on this day and in this place not merely to speak
but also to make a pledge, I hereby express my vow that I set myself
and my house, the entire empire, the entire people, and my army,
symbolically represented by this baton, under the cross and under the
protection of Him of whom the great apostle said, "Neither is there
salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given
among men whereby we must be saved," and who has said of Himself:
"Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away."

I drink to the health of the city of Aix in the firm conviction that
the words which I have spoken will here fall upon good ground, just as
I am assured from what I have seen among both the older and younger
citizens of this city that our house and our throne will in the future
likewise find firm support within their walls. Long live the city of


NOVEMBER 26, 1902

    The present speech and the one which follows it, to the working
    men in Breslau, may conveniently be taken together, as they both
    concern the Emperor's attitude toward the Socialists. Of all
    his policies, his attempt to destroy this political party has
    been least successful. It had increased from 763,000 in 1887 to
    4,250,000 in 1912, when it numbered more than twice as many voters
    as its nearest competitor, the Centre party, 1,996,000. The Emperor
    had tried to introduce repeatedly subversion acts which would have
    made for the persecution of this the largest political party in his
    empire. When, on October 13, 1895, a manufacturer was murdered in
    Mülhausen by a workman who had been repeatedly convicted of theft,
    William II telegraphed to his widow: "Another sacrifice to the
    revolutionary movement engendered by the Socialists." This hostile
    attitude was unavailing and aroused the criticism of the greatest
    German historian, Mommsen:

    "It is unfortunately true that at the present time the Social
    Democracy is the only great party which has any claim to political
    respect. It is not necessary to refer to talent. Everybody in
    Germany knows that with brains like those of Bebel it would be
    possible to furnish forth a dozen noblemen from east of the Elbe in
    a fashion that would make them shine among their peers.

    "The devotion, the self-sacrificing spirit of the Social
    Democratic masses, impresses even those who are far from sharing
    their aims. Our Liberals might well take a lesson from the
    discipline of the party." And again, only about a week after this
    speech of the Emperor's Mommsen wrote:

    "There must be an end of the superstition, as false as it is
    perfidious, that the nation is divided into parties of law and
    order on the one hand and a party of revolution on the other, and
    that it is the prime political duty of citizens belonging to the
    former category to shun the labor party as if it were in quarantine
    for the plague and to combat it as the enemy of the state."

    The Emperor has had many friends among the leaders in the
    industrial world. Alfred Krupp had stood in close relation to his
    sovereign and had been one of the founders and prime movers in
    the German Navy League, which, more than anything else, had made
    possible the realization of the imperial naval policy. The Emperor
    is altogether mistaken in ascribing the stories circulated about
    Krupp to the malignity of Social Democratic editors. Very ugly
    rumors, whether true or false, had long before this time circulated
    about this industrial leader; they could have been heard in other
    countries of Europe, especially in Italy, and most particularly in
    Tiberius's island of Capri, where he is said to have had a villa.

    The address was delivered in the waiting-room of the station at
    Essen on the day of Krupp's funeral.

I feel the need of expressing to you how deeply my heart is moved by
the death of this man. Her Majesty, the Empress and Queen, wishes me
to express to you her grief also, and she has already expressed it in
writing to Frau Krupp. I have often, with my wife, been a guest in the
Krupp house and have felt the charm of his lovable personality. Our
relations have become so well established in the course of the years
that I dare call myself a friend of the deceased and of his house.
On this account I have not wished to deny myself the privilege of
appearing here to-day at his funeral, and I hold it to be my duty to
stand at the side of the widow and daughters of my friend.

The peculiar circumstances which accompanied the sad event also make it
incumbent upon me to be here as the head of the German Empire, to hold
the shield of the German Emperor over the house and the memory of this
man. Whoever knew the deceased intimately knows with what a sensitive
and delicate nature he was endowed and that this was the one vulnerable
point through which to deal him a death-blow. He was the victim of his
unimpeachable integrity.

An event has occurred within the German countries so degrading and low
that it has aroused all hearts and must bring the blush of shame to
the cheeks of every German patriot, because of the disgrace brought
upon our entire people. The honor of a man, German to the core, who
lived only for others, who had in his mind only the welfare of the
Fatherland, but above all that of his employees, has been assailed.

This deed, with its consequences, is nothing less than murder; for
there is no difference between him who mixes a poisonous drink and
offers it to another and him who from the safe ambush of his editor's
office destroys the honorable name of a fellow man with the poisoned
arrows of his slanders and kills him through the torment of soul caused
by them.

Who was it that began this shameful attack upon our friend? Men who up
to the present have been counted as Germans, but who are now unworthy
of this name, who sprang from the classes of the German working people,
who have such a tremendous amount to thank Krupp for and of whom
thousands in the streets with tearful faces waved a last farewell to
the bier of their benefactor.

You, Krupp's workmen, have ever held faithfully to your employer and
have clung to him; gratitude is not wiped out of your hearts. With
pride I have seen everywhere abroad the name of the Fatherland honored
through the work of your hands. Men who wish to be the leaders of the
German workmen have robbed you of your dear master. It remains for you
to shield and protect him and to preserve his memory from disgrace.

I trust, therefore, that you will find the proper means of making it
clear to the body of German working men that it is important hereafter
to make it impossible for good and honorable working men to have any
community of interest or close relationship with the perpetrators of
this shameful deed; for it is the honor of the working man that has
been besmirched. Whoever will sit at the same table with these people
deliberately lays himself open to a charge of moral participation in
the crime.

I have sufficient confidence in the German laborers to believe that
they are conscious of the extreme seriousness of the present moment
and that, as German men, they will find a solution for this difficult



That the working men of Breslau have decided to come to me, their King
and father, fills me with the greatest satisfaction, for two reasons.
In the first place, you have not disappointed the expectations which I
expressed in Essen; in the second, you have helped thereby to maintain
free from reproach the memory of my late friend Krupp.

From my heart I thank the spokesman for his cordial, patriotic words.
You show thereby that an honorable attitude and a dependence upon the
King and the Fatherland are taking firm root among you. Your condition
has indeed become the object of my deepest interest and consideration,
for I observed with pride in foreign lands how the German working man
was considered above all others, and with justice. Your hearts may
exult and you may well rejoice in your work and your condition.

Led by the remarkable message[39] of the great Emperor William I, I have
improved the social legislation so that a good and secure condition of
existence has been created for the working men through old age, and
this has been accomplished often at great sacrifice to the employer.
And our Germany is the only country in which legislation relating to
the welfare of the working classes has developed to any great degree.

[39] See footnote to "First Declaration of Polity," June 25, 1888.

On the ground of the great concern which your King has for your
condition I am justified in giving you also a word of warning. For
years you and your brothers have allowed yourselves to be deluded by
the agitators of the Socialists into thinking that if you do not belong
to this party and acknowledge it no one pays any attention to you and
that you will not be in a position to obtain a hearing for your just
interests in the amelioration of your condition.

This is a gross lie and a serious error. Instead of representing you
directly, the agitators seek to stir you up against your employers,
against the other classes, against the throne, and against the church,
and have in this way taken advantage of you, terrorized you, and
flattered you in order to strengthen their own power. And to what end
is this power used? Not for furthering your welfare, but for sowing
hatred between the classes and for disseminating cowardly slanders that
respect nothing as sacred; and finally they have outraged the Almighty

As honor-loving men you cannot and dare not have anything more to do
with such people, and you must no longer be led by them. No! Send us
as representatives your friends and comrades from your own ranks, the
simple, plain man from the shop who has your confidence. Such a man
stands for your interests and your wishes, and we will gladly welcome
him as the representative of the German working classes, not as a
Social Democrat. With such representatives of the working classes, no
matter how many there may be, we will gladly work together for the good
of the people and of the country.

In this way your future will be well cared for, especially since it
naturally and closely depends upon loyalty to the King, upon respect
for law and for the state, for the honor of one's fellow men and
brothers, true to the proverb: "Fear God, love your brothers, and honor
the King."



    As a result of a lecture before the Oriental Society of Berlin, a
    very serious controversy arose in religious circles in Germany. The
    Emperor gave his opinion in the following open letter, which was
    printed in the _Grenzboten_. It is said that this very significant
    letter shows the influence of the court chaplain, Doctor Dryander.
    Certain of the ideas are, however, thoroughly characteristic of the


My telegram to you must have removed the doubts which you still
entertained regarding the conclusion of the lecture. It was perfectly
clearly understood by the audience and therefore had to stand as it
does; but I am very pleased that through your inquiry the matter of
this second lecture was again taken up, and I am glad to take this
occasion, after reading through the section again, to present my
position in a clear light.

During an evening meeting among ourselves Professor Delitzsch had the
opportunity, with her Majesty, the Empress, and General Superintendent
Dryander, to confer and discuss thoroughly for several hours, during
which I remained a passive listener. He, unfortunately, departed from
the standpoint of the thoroughgoing historian and Assyriologist and
penetrated into the region of theological and religious conclusions and
hypotheses, which were hazy and bold. When, however, he came to the
New Testament it soon became evident that I could not agree with him
in the ideas which he developed concerning the person of the Redeemer,
and I was compelled to state my own standpoint, which was diametrically
opposed to his. He does not recognize the divinity of Christ and
therefore concludes in regard to the Old Testament that it does not
refer to Him as the Messiah. Here the Assyriologist and investigating
historian ceases and the theologian with all his lights and shades
steps in. In this province I can only advise him to go very carefully,
step by step, and in any case to ventilate his theories only in
theological publications and in the circles of his colleagues and to
spare us laymen and especially the Oriental Society, before whose forum
all this is out of place. We excavate and read whatever we find and
publish it for the advancement of knowledge and history, but not in
order to help justify or combat the religious hypotheses of any one of
many learned men.

In Delitzsch's case the theologian has run away with the historian,
and the latter serves merely as a point of departure for the former.
I think it unfortunate that Delitzsch should not have stuck to his
original programme, which he developed in former years, namely, on
the basis of the discoveries of our society, to ascertain through
scientifically approved translations of the Scriptures how far these
offer an illustration of the chronicle of the people of Israel;
that is, enlightenment as to historical events, customs, and uses,
traditions, politics, legislation, etc.; in other words, how far the
undeniably highly developed Babylonian culture came into contact with
the Israelites, could work upon them, yes, even impress its stamp upon
them, and thereby accomplish, from a purely human point of view, a
sort of rehabilitation for the Babylonians, who were, according to the
Old Testament at least, a very crude, shameful, and one-sided people.
That was his original intention, at least as I understood it, and a
province very fruitful and interesting to us all, the investigation,
explanation, and exposition of which must have interested us laymen to
the highest degree and would have demanded our deepest gratitude. But
he should have stuck to this. Unfortunately, however, in his zeal he
has overshot the mark. As was to be expected, the excavations brought
to light communications which bear in a religious way upon the Old
Testament. He should have collated this material and pointed out and
explained coincidences, when such occurred, but he should have left it
to the listener to draw for himself all purely religious conclusions.
In this way his discourse would have commanded the interest and
good-will of the lay public. That, unfortunately, he has not done.
Pretending that he could explain it all on historical and purely human
grounds, he has attacked the question of revelation in a very polemical
manner and more or less denied it. That was a serious mistake, because
he touched many of his hearers in what was deepest and most sacred to
them. And whether he was right or wrong--that for the moment is all
one, since we are concerned not with a purely scientific gathering
of theologians but with laymen of all kinds and conditions--he has
overturned and rudely shaken many favorite conceptions and images
with which these people connect sacred and cherished ideas and has
ruthlessly shaken the foundation of their belief, if he has not swept
it away altogether, a thing which only a mighty genius dare be bold
enough to undertake and which the study of Assyriology alone does
not justify. Goethe also once treated this subject and pointed out
especially that one must be careful before a great, general public to
break down only "_Terminologiepagoden_" [the pagodas of terminology].
The excellent professor, in his zeal, has overlooked the principle that
it is very necessary to distinguish between what is and what is not
fitting to the place, the public, etc. As a theological specialist he
can, through the avenue of special publications, express for his circle
of colleagues his theses, hypotheses, and theories as well as his
convictions, which it would not do to express in a popular lecture or

I would like now to come back once more to my own personal standpoint
in regard to the doctrine or view of revelation, as I have often
explained it to you, my dear Hollmann, and to other gentlemen. I
distinguish between two different kinds of revelation: one a continuous
and in a manner historical revelation; the other a purely religious
one, preparing for the later appearance of the Messiah.

In the first place, let me say, there is not the slightest doubt in my
mind but that God reveals Himself, always and permanently, through the
human race which He created. He has "blown the breath of His nostrils"
into man; that is, He has given him a piece of Himself--a soul. With
fatherly love and interest He follows the development of mankind; in
order to lead and advance it further, He "reveals" Himself in this or
that great sage or priest or king, be he heathen, Jew, or Christian.
Hammurabi was one, so were Moses, Abraham, Homer, Charlemagne,
Luther, Shakespeare, Goethe, Kant, Emperor William the Great. These
He has sought out and made worthy, through His grace, to accomplish
according to His will splendid and imperishable deeds for their people
in the spiritual as well as in the physical world. How often has my
grandfather expressly said that he was only an instrument in the hand
of the Lord. The works of great spirits are given to the people by God
in order that they may imitate them and feel their way further through
the intricacies of the unexplored regions of this life. Certainly God
has "revealed" Himself in different ways at different times, according
to the condition and culture of the people, and still does so to-day.
For, as we are overcome by the greatness and power of the magnificent
nature of creation and are astounded to see in it the revealed
greatness of God, so, just as surely, do we thankfully recognize in
every really great and splendid thing which a man or a god does the
splendor of the revelation of God. He works directly upon and among us!

The second kind of revelation, the more religious, is that which
relates to the coming of our Lord. From the time of Abraham on it
is introduced slowly but prophetically--the coming of the All-wise,
the All-knowing; for mankind would otherwise have been lost. And now
begins the most wonderful phenomenon of all, the revelation of God.
The seed of Abraham and the people who developed from it regard as the
most sacred thing in the world a rigorous belief in a single God. They
must cherish it--. Separated during the Egyptian exile, the scattered
portions, welded together a second time by Moses, strove ever to hold
fast to their belief in a single God. It was the direct working of God
upon these people which allowed them to rise again. And so it continues
further down the centuries until the Messiah, who was announced and
foretold by the prophets and psalmists, finally appears. The greatest
revelation of God in the world! For He appeared in the person of His
Son; Christ is God; God in human form. He redeemed us, He inspires
us, He draws us on to follow Him, we feel His fire burning within us,
His pity strengthens us, His dissatisfaction destroys us, but His
intercession saves us. Sure of victory, building only upon His Word, we
go through work, scorn, sorrow, misery, and death, for we have in Him
the revealed Word of God and He never deceives.

That is the way I look at these questions. The Word of God has,
through Luther, become everything, especially for us Evangelicals;
and as a good theologian Delitzsch should not have forgotten that our
great Luther taught us to sing and to believe: "Ye shall let the Word
stand!" For me it goes without saying that the Old Testament contains
a great number of extracts which are of purely human origin and not
"the revealed Word of God." There are purely historical descriptions
of events of all kinds which took place in the life of the people of
Israel in the realm of political, religious, moral, and spiritual
matters. So, for instance, the giving of the law on Mount Sinai may be
looked upon as inspired by God in only a symbolical sense; for Moses
was compelled to have recourse to some means of giving new force to
old and well-known portions of the law (which were probably derived
from the Codex of Hammurabi). Otherwise he might not have been able
to unite and weld together a people whose organization had become lax
and incapable of resistance. Here the historian can perhaps construe
from the sense and the run of the words some relation to the laws of
Hammurabi, the friend of Abraham, which would perhaps be perfectly
logical; that would, however, in no way detract from the fact that God
inspired Moses to do it and in so far revealed Himself to the people of

As I see it, therefore, our good professor ought hereafter to avoid
handling and bringing forward religion, as such, in his addresses to
our society. On the other hand, he may continue unmolested to bring
forward whatever connections there may be between the religion,
customs, etc., of the Babylonians, etc., and the Old Testament. From
which I derive the following conclusions:

(a) I believe in one God, and one only.

(b) In order to teach this we need a form, especially for our children.

(c) This form has been up to the present time the Old Testament in its
present state. Through investigation, inscriptions, and excavations,
this form will certainly change materially; that does not matter, and
even the fact that much will be lost from the nimbus of the chosen
people does not matter. The kernel and the content remain ever the
same: God and His work!

Religion was never the result of science but the outpouring of the
heart and being of man in his intercourse with God.

With heartiest thanks and many greetings,

                                         Your true friend,

                                      (Signed) WILLIAM, I. R.

P. S. You may make the fullest use of these lines; whoever wants to may
read them.


DÖBERITZ, MAY 29, 1903

    After conducting the manoeuvres of the guard the Emperor dedicated
    the obelisk to Frederick the Great. The character and achievements
    of Frederick have been summarized in chapter I.

One hundred and fifty years ago, on these same fields, his Majesty,
Frederick II, who even in his lifetime was called "the Great," gathered
together a considerable part of his army in order to train and steel
it for the mighty struggles which he foresaw in spirit through his
prophetic vision. So important was this preparation for him that he did
not hesitate to trust his columns to the direction of his experienced
field-marshals. Here the great soldier King, working restlessly,
not overlooking details in his interest for the greater concerns of
history, trained his regiments for the difficult tasks of the Seven
Years' War, which was soon to set in, and created that inner bond
between himself and his soldiers which inspired them to the greatest
deeds of daring, while he infused his spirit into his generals and
so laid the foundation for the unmatched results which found their
crowning achievement in the victorious overthrow of a world in arms
united against him. Let these achievements be unforgotten; unforgotten
the names of the heroes of that great time.

Frederick's enemies derisively called his little army the "_Potsdamer
Wachtparade_" [the "Potsdam Guard's Parade"]! Well, he showed them what
he could do at the head of it! And in later times likewise the "Potsdam
Guard's Parade" fittingly showed the way to every one who tried to
cultivate too close an acquaintance with it. This obelisk of northern
granite is erected in memory of that time. A memorial to "Fredericus
Rex, the King and Hero," to be emulated by us all in working with
unabated strength to the end that we may be ready to strike in any
emergency. When in a moment the curtain shall fall, when the flags
and standards dip in greeting, swords are lowered, and presented
bayonets glisten--all this is done in honor not only of this block of
stone but of him, the great King, his generals and field-marshals;
of his great successor, William the Great, and his paladins, who now,
assembled around the Great Ally above, look down upon us; and in honor
of Prussia's glorious martial history and tradition. Attention, present


HAMBURG, JUNE 20, 1903

    The equestrian statue of Emperor William I was dedicated in
    Hamburg, June 20, 1903. The Emperor's interest in glorifying and
    occasionally even in sanctifying his ancestors is frequently
    noticeable. He has tried to assure to his grandfather the title
    of William the Great, and the Emperor's friend Ballin, of the
    Hamburg-American Line, has given this title as well as that of
    Imperator to the well-known transatlantic steamers. It is perhaps
    significant that Bismarck is not mentioned. The pedestal of this
    monument was left blank. As has been noted, rumor has it that the
    citizens of Hamburg were unwilling to bestow this title and feared
    to offend with the simpler "William I."

It has often been my task to express my thanks to great cities and
their enthusiastic citizens; never have I found it so difficult to find
the correct, pertinent, and adequate expression for what I feel and
what I have seen and experienced.

If, first of all, I may speak as grandson of the great Emperor, whose
bronze likeness the city of Hamburg has just unveiled, I would like
to give utterance to the gratitude which so stirs my heart, that the
citizens of Hamburg have been able in such a brilliant, handsome, and
noble manner to show their feeling for Germany and their gratitude to
the old hero. As his grandson, this has pleased me greatly and has
stirred me deeply.

For the rest, I cannot forbear to emphasize the truly overwhelming
reception which was accorded me here by great and small, young and old,
high and low. The many thousand faces which lighted toward me to-day
gave evidence that the greeting came from the heart and from feelings
which were deeply moved, and I beg the senate and the citizens to
accept my heartiest, sincerest, and warmest thanks and to communicate
them to the city.

Indeed, for the younger generation which stood with us about the bronze
portrait to-day the great Emperor is already a historical personage,
and the events which weave themselves about his person and the time in
which he worked are already described in history.

I believe that I am not presuming if I prophesy that some time in
future centuries the awe-inspiring figure of my grandfather will stand
forth before the German people, surrounded by at least as many legends
and as powerful and as conspicuous for all time as once the figure of
the Emperor Barbarossa was. Truly, the younger generation is accustomed
to look upon what we call the empire, together with what it has brought
us, without thinking what it has cost to arrive at this point.

And I believe we recognize the hand of Providence when we look upon
that awe-inspiring figure which stands yonder in its peaceful attitude
before the Rathaus, with its earnestness and its silent tranquillity
of old age. It was precisely, this man whom Providence sought out to
accomplish this hardest of all tasks--the uniting of the German races.
For no one could resist the charm of the personality, the simple
modesty, the winning lovableness of the lofty ruler; and so it was
permitted to him, surrounded by his powerful paladins who were devoted
to him and who worked with him, to smooth the way and reconcile the
differences; while he kept ever before his eyes the goal, the union of
the Fatherland. During a long time of peace, in quiet work his thoughts
ripened and the plans of the already gray-haired man were ready when
the mighty task came to him of once more reviving the empire. I hope
that the youth of Hamburg, when they pass this monument, will never
forget the time of preparation through which this noble ruler lived.

With justice you speak of the time of Emperor William as great and
powerful--powerful in its impulses, mighty in its flaming enthusiasm.
Gentlemen, I think that our time is also great. The tasks which were
assigned to the great Emperor have been accomplished; yet when things
for a while seem dark and the tasks which are assigned us seem too
hard we must not forget what that noble ruler endured. Let us not
forget that he lived through and remembered Jena and Tilsit, and that,
nevertheless, he never despaired of the future of the Fatherland. From
Tilsit we travelled to Versailles!

And even so is it destined to be in the future; there remain tasks for
our time also. The great Emperor with his great aides has laid the
basis, the corner-stone of the building; it is for us to build upon
it! Therefore it is my opinion and firm conviction that a great future
awaits us also, if we are but determined to make it so. Tasks are
assigned to us, and, whether they are light or heavy, we must face them
as well as we are able and enlist all our strength. Then we shall be
able to accomplish them and I am convinced that now as then the German
Empire and the German people will never lack the right sort of men.

For this reason I turn to-day to that place where formerly from the
depths of my heart I issued an earnest appeal to the German people;
and I repeat again to-day: "May it remain true to its ideals and to
itself!" Then, as the block of granite yonder bears the great Emperor,
so will the German people, true to their traditions, bear upon their
hearts and discharge with their strength the new tasks and undertakings
which come to them. May they enter with decision upon the work which
Heaven assigns them without asking whether it be easy or difficult,
without worrying as to how they shall accomplish it, provided only they
are going forward!

Raise your eyes! Lift up your heads! Look to the heights, bend your
knee before the Great Ally, who has never forsaken the Germans,
and who, if he has at times allowed them to be sorely tried and
discouraged, has again raised them from the dust. Put your hand on
your heart, direct your gaze into the distance, and from time to time
give a backward glance for memory to the old Emperor and his time,
and I am convinced that, as Hamburg is progressing in the world, so
will our Fatherland progress along the road of enlightenment, the road
of improvement, the road of practical Christianity: a blessing for
mankind, a bulwark of peace, the wonder of all countries!

I give this as my firm hope and conviction, and to this wish I empty my
glass: Long life to the city of Hamburg!--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!


MARCH 9, 1905

    It will have been noted that the Emperor usually addresses his
    recruits in very simple language. On the occasion of administering
    the oath to the naval recruits at Wilhelmshaven, he was concerned
    about explaining to them the reasons for the Japanese victory, for
    he had repeatedly told them that only a good Christian can be a
    good soldier.

    The speech was reported through a letter of one of the recruits.

The Emperor spoke, among other things, of the heroic deeds of the
Japanese and explained that they had sprung from the Japanese love
of country and children, which had begotten a splendid manliness in
the army and navy. He said that we must not conclude, however, from
the Japanese victories--the victories of a heathen over a Christian
people--that Buddha was superior to our Lord Christ. If Russia was
beaten, it was due for the most part, according to his opinion, to the
fact that Christianity in Russia was in a pretty bad way; and then,
too, there were many Christian virtues among the Japanese. A good
Christian is synonymous with a good soldier!

But Christianity is poorly off among the Germans also, and he--the
Emperor--doubted whether we Germans in case of a war would have any
special right to pray God for victory, to wrest it from Him in prayer
as Jacob did in his struggle with the angel. The Japanese were the
scourge of God just as once Attila and Napoleon were.

And so we must take care lest God should have to chastise us with such
a scourge, etc. The Emperor spoke very earnestly but very impressively
and simply, so that he could be understood by every one.


BREMEN, MARCH 22, 1905

    The following address was delivered at the Rathaus in Bremen on the
    occasion of the dedication of the monument to Emperor Frederick
    III. The Emperor here presents his views on the mission of Germany
    in much the same spirit in which it is expounded in a number of
    his addresses of this time. He has become increasingly conscious
    of her "manifest destiny" in the decade which had passed after the
    celebrations of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Franco-Prussian
    War. Germany had entered upon a period of great prosperity and had
    begun to possess the sense of latent power. The Emperor gives us
    here the purely historical reasons which have led him to refrain
    from pretensions to world-dominion. It is significant that his
    next address will be delivered at Morocco. The question naturally
    arises, what hopes or aspirations were in the minds of the audience
    before whom the Emperor made this _gran rifiuto_. It was in a time
    of insistent agitation by the Navy League and the Colonial party.


Will you allow me first, with a heart deeply moved, to perform the duty
of a son and thank you sincerely for having transmitted to me the wish
of your countrymen that I should participate in this festive day and be
present at the unveiling of the unique and splendid statue which the
free Hanseatic city of Bremen has erected to my father?

I can assure you that it stirred me deeply to-day as my eye wandered
over the masses of people to think that the former Prussian Crown
Prince, subsequently the first Crown Prince of the German Empire, and,
finally, second Hohenzollern Emperor, should be fêted in a free German
city just as though this were his home. It is a proof that his figure,
as well as that of his great and illustrious father, has become a
common possession of the entire German people.

I sincerely thank the city of Bremen that it has honored my father
and his memory in such a magnificent manner. You have created a work
of art, the like of which is not often seen in German lands. And I am
convinced that in later generations his powerful personality, which
will have become surrounded by the glamour of legend, will through this
statue be brought nearer to the hearts of the people. And I am sure
that the generations of Bremen which are to follow, from father to son,
will never forget the second Emperor, whose noble Siegfried figure led
the German army to victory and whom we have to thank for our unity.

And so, now, beautiful statues of both my father and my grandfather
stand in this loyal German city and furnish mile-stones for the history
of our Fatherland as well as for the city of Bremen.

Truly, the historical retrospect which you have been good enough to
present us shows magnificently the leadership of God and the grace
which Providence has bestowed upon our people and our country. The
portion of time which is represented by both of these two noble leaders
who stand here in bronze has, like a foundation-stone, been firmly laid
in history. It remains for later times and their generations to build
upon the foundation which these great rulers have set down.

You have had the goodness to express the thoughts which stirred you
upon a former occasion in this same place. They correspond entirely
to what I myself thought at that time. When, as a lad, I stood before
the model of the Brommy[40] ship, I bitterly felt the disgrace which
our fleet and our flag had been forced to suffer. And perhaps, since
on my mother's side a bit of sea blood flowed into my veins, this was
the thing which was to give me my cue for the manner in which I would
envisage the tasks which henceforth were to confront the empire.

[40] Bromme (called also Brommy) was a German seaman who served in
     the Greek navy and who was later placed in charge of the Naval
     Commission by the German National Assembly in 1848. He organized
     the first modern German fleet and as admiral drove off the three
     Danish ships blockading the Weser. This navy was considered merely
     a passing necessity, and in 1853 Bromme was retired, after the
     little fleet had been sold at auction.

I swore to the colors when I came to the throne, after the mighty time
of my grandfather, that, so far as in me lay, the bayonet and cannon
would have to rest, but that bayonet and cannon, however, would have
to be kept sharp and effective in order that jealousy and envy from
without should not disturb us in the development of our garden and
our beautiful house. I have made a vow, as a result of what I have
learned from history, never to strive for an empty world-dominion. For
what has become of the so-called world-empires? Alexander the Great,
Napoleon I--all the great warriors--have swum in blood and have left
subjugated peoples behind them who at the first opportunity have risen
up again and brought the empire to ruin.

The world-empire of which I have dreamed shall consist in this, that
the newly created German Empire shall first of all enjoy on all sides
the most absolute confidence as a quiet, honorable, and peaceful
neighbor; and that, if in the future they shall read in history of a
German world-empire or of a Hohenzollern world-ruler, it shall not
be founded upon acquisitions won with the sword but upon the mutual
trust of the nations who are striving for the same goals. To express
it briefly, as a great poet has said: "Limited outwardly, but with no
limits upon inward development."

You have mentioned the ships which here hang memorially from the
ceiling of this beautiful old hall. The time in which I grew up was, in
spite of the great war, not a great and glorious one for the seafaring
part of our nation. I, too, have here drawn the logical conclusions
from what my ancestors have done. In a military way much had been done
within, as was necessary; now the equipment of the navy had to be
brought forward.

I thank God that I do not have to make a desperate appeal here in this
town hall as I once did in Hamburg.[41] The fleet is built and is on
the seas; we have material for crews. The eagerness and the spirit are
the same as those which filled the officers of the Prussian army at
Hohenfriedberg, at Königgrätz, and at Sedan; and every German war-ship
which leaves the slips is one more guarantee for peace on land. We are
correspondingly more powerful as allies, and our opponents will be
correspondingly less willing to offer us any aggression.

[41] The appeal referred to is the speech delivered at Hamburg on
     October 18, 1899, with its famous "Bitterly do we need a powerful

To-day, as I scanned the citizens of Bremen, I saw the old and the
young standing next each other--the old with their medals and their
crosses, comrades in battle and in deeds under both the great leaders
whose statues stand in this city, and before them stand the youth who
shall grow up to the new empire and its tasks.

What will these tasks be? To develop steadily; to shun strife, hate,
division, and jealousy; to rejoice in the German Fatherland as it is
and not to strive after the impossible; to hold fast to the conviction
that our God would never have taken such great pains with our German
Fatherland and its people if he had not been preparing us for something
still greater.

We are the salt of the earth, but we must also be worthy to be so.
Therefore must our youth learn to give up and deny themselves what
is not good for them, to put far from them the things which have
slipped in from foreign peoples, and to preserve their morals, good
conduct, reverence, and religion. Then some day may we write over
the German people the motto on the helmet of the 1st Regiment of my
guard: "_Semper talis_"--"Ever the Same." Then we shall be looked upon
from all sides with respect and in a measure with love as a safe and
trustworthy people and can stand with our hand on our sword-hilt and
with our shield grounded before us and say: "_Tamen_, come what will."

I am sure that my words will fall upon good ground here in Bremen.
Earnestly I hope that the golden peace which up to the present with
God's help we have maintained we may preserve still further and that
under this peace Bremen may grow green, may bloom, and prosper. That is
my innermost wish. Long life to Bremen--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!



MARCH 31, 1905--NOVEMBER 17, 1906



    On the 8th of April, 1904, an _entente_ which had settled all
    outstanding questions between France and Great Britain and gave
    to Great Britain a free hand in Egypt and to France a free hand
    in Morocco was formally signed in London. The German Government
    officially declared that the settlement between France and Great
    Britain concerned only these two countries; but the Pan-German
    Society, the Colonial Society, and the Navy League began so
    insistent an agitation that the government changed its attitude
    and the Emperor here declares in no uncertain terms that what
    Germany undertakes in Morocco will be done exclusively with the
    "_sovereign_ Sultan." Germany was evidently picking a quarrel with
    France over Morocco, with or without warrant, as the case may
    be, and was trying to ascertain, it is generally believed, the
    closeness of the relationship between France and Great Britain.
    The large commercial interests of which the Emperor speaks were
    fairly negligible; though he doubtless had the right to protect it,
    Germany's yearly trade there did not amount to as much as that of
    an ordinary department store or of a fairly successful merchant.
    For the previous eight years it averaged less than half a million
    dollars annually. Her course here has usually been regarded as
    unnecessarily belligerent.

    True to his policy of personal diplomacy, the Emperor suddenly
    appeared at Tangier and while there made his speech to the German

    The whole question was taken up at the conference of Algeciras
    in 1906. Although the policy of "the open door," which protected
    Germany's commercial interests was guaranteed, the very general
    storm of protest in Germany, especially on the part of the war
    party and Navy League, showed that she had entered the contest with
    more serious intentions. World policy by aggressive interference
    had already been initiated when, in the Spanish-American War,
    the German Admiral Diedrichs started to hamper the operations of
    the American fleet at Manila. Morocco was looked upon by some,
    Doctor Liman, for instance, as a second defeat. In the Algeciras
    conference Italy sided with France and England. Italy had been
    continuing as a member of the Triple Alliance partly through fear
    that the French would annex Tripoli, which Italy desired. England
    and France had now privately agreed to give Italy a free hand. She
    sided with them and it was evident that her vital interests in the
    Triple Alliance had been considerably lessened. As England and
    Russia were also settling all their Eastern points of difference,
    Germany began to be conscious of her isolation, which had been
    largely a result of her attitude and unfortunate diplomacy.

I am pleased to make the acquaintance of the pioneers of Germany in
Morocco and to be able to tell them that they have done their duty.

Germany has great commercial interests here. I shall advance and
protect our commerce, which shows a satisfying increase, and for that
reason shall insist upon equal rights with all powers, which is only
possible through the sovereignty of the Sultan and the independence of
the country. For Germany both of these must be unquestioned, and I am,
therefore, ready to intervene for them at all times.

I hope that my visit in Tangier declares this plainly and emphatically
and that it will call forth the conviction that what Germany undertakes
in Morocco will be negotiated exclusively with the sovereign Sultan.



    On this date the Emperor and his four sons dedicated a monument
    to Frederick the Great on the site of his famous bivouac at
    Bunzelwitz. In the evening he addressed a banquet in Breslau, in
    which he took up especially the services of the Silesians to the
    crown. He particularly recalls the support they gave Frederick
    William III in 1813, at the lowest ebb of that King's fortunes.
    Divisions of patriotic volunteers, "free corps," were organized
    in the province, who, not being Prussians, could not serve in the
    Prussian line. The best known of these was that of Lützow, to which
    the poet Theodor Körner belonged. It is from one of his most famous
    war-songs that the quotation in the Emperor's speech is taken. The
    manner in which he speaks of the coronation of his grandfather
    "by the will of Heaven" and with no mention of the Constitution,
    is to be found in several of his speeches, notably the address at
    Königsberg (August 25, 1910). Most of these speeches were made in
    his hereditary provinces, Prussia, Silesia, and Brandenburg, and
    aroused considerable protest in other parts of Germany.


With a heart deeply moved, I take the opportunity to-day to speak as
sovereign Duke of Silesia to my Silesians, for the impressions which
have been showered upon me during the short time that I have been among
you are of so powerful and compelling a nature that words fail me to
express them or to find the proper form for the thanks which I would
like to communicate to my people of Silesia. I do not refer only to
yesterday's demonstrations, which surpassed, if that were possible,
the jubilations on the day of my entrance. And I do not mean only those
on the part of the old soldiers in black uniforms with their military
decorations on their breasts, who can say, "We have been present at
the time when history was made," and who dare pride themselves on
having been fellows in arms of the great Emperor and his noble son, my
father, whose heart, as is known to all of you, beat high for Silesia,
but I mean to-day, on my journey through the green Silesian country to
Bunzelwitz, Schweidnitz, and Rogau and back--everywhere I have found
the same warmth, the same glowing, burning enthusiasm. It is the old
Silesian loyalty which breaks forth and which proves the appreciation
on the part of the people for what the house of Hohenzollern has done
for them. This loyalty is rooted in ground specially consecrated
by history. For who will deny that the province of Silesia, almost
more than any other, stands in closest union with the history of
our Fatherland and of our house? And, especially, how could any one
speak of the development of Silesia without first thinking of the one
powerful figure of whom the grenadiers sang from the Rhine to the
Oder: "Fredericus Rex, our King and leader"? Wherever we look over
the plains of Silesia rise the memories of him, of the incomparable
battles through which he made Prussia a world-power, and also of the
splendid work of peace in which he sought to raise and strengthen the
sorely oppressed country. And again in later times it was precisely to
Silesia that it was reserved to send a new ray of hope to that sorely
tried Hohenzollern King, Frederick William III, when he encountered the
ardent enthusiasm of the first volunteers in Breslau, when the first
raising of troops took place here, and when the "wild, dashing Lützow
hunters" started in their career against the enemy at the Zobten. And
so it has been ever since. The sons of Silesia have fought whenever it
was a question of coming forward and sacrificing their blood for the
Fatherland. And so it may be very well said that the history of our
house is indissolubly bound up with that of Silesia, one of her most
beautiful provinces. And when we glance back over this great history we
can characterize it with the phrase which my great departed grandfather
used when, after fierce conflicts, through the will of Heaven the
imperial crown was set upon his brow: "God was with us, and His be the
honor!" And when I stop to think how the flags of the veterans passed
me with proud bearing I believe that we can apply this to the present
and thank God that He has disposed everything for the good and profit
of this province and of our house; above all, for the fact that it has
been granted us to carry out our work in peace. But if God was with
us we ought earnestly to ask the question whether we were worthy of
His help. Has every one among us also done his part by offering up his
thought, his health, and strength to carry on and develop the legacy
which was bequeathed to us by the past? If every one with his hand
upon his heart asks himself this question sincerely, many a man will
find it difficult to answer. And then, gentlemen, let us draw a lesson
from the personality of the great King and decide where it was that we
have failed in the work, where we have allowed our spirits to flag,
and where dark thoughts and fears have bewildered our minds. Away with
them! And just as the great King was never left in the lurch by the
old Ally, so our Fatherland and this beautiful province will always be
near His heart. And so out of the beautiful circle of memories and of
golden loyalty which I have here encountered, let us coin a new vow:
from this time on, through offering up our strength of soul and body,
we will devote ourselves to the task of urging our country forward,
of working for our people; and every one, according to his position,
whether high or low, will do this; and the various creeds will unite
to check unbelief; and above all things, for the future, we shall keep
our vision clear and never despair of ourselves or of our people.
The world belongs to the living, and the living are right. I cannot
endure pessimists, and whoever does not take part in the work let him
depart and, if he likes, seek out a better country. But I expect from
my Silesians that they to-day will unite in the decision to be ever
mindful of their great aims and examples, that they will follow their
Duke, especially in his work of peace for his people. In this hope,
I empty my glass to the health of the province of Silesia and of all
faithful Silesians.



    One of the men of letters whom the Emperor has been particularly
    delighted to honor and in whom he sees one of the glories of German
    literature is Doctor Ludwig Ganghofer, who is certainly not more
    than an able writer of the second rank. After a performance in the
    _Hoftheater_ in Münich the Emperor expressed the desire to see him,
    and the following conversation took place which was reported in a
    confusing combination of direct and indirect quotation.

The Emperor said that he had recently read the "Hohen Schein" and
spoke at some length about it, going over the content and thought of
the book. From the way in which he spoke about it one could see how
intensely he was occupied with one thing in particular.

What pleased him especially in the book was the optimistic tone which
pervaded it, the preaching which stimulated belief in life, and the
manner of accepting the misfortunes of existence, as well as the
trust in the future and trust in humanity. "This," said the Emperor,
"makes such an impression upon me because I am an optimist through and
through and will allow nothing to prevent me from remaining one to the
end of my days." He spoke of himself as a man full of his work and
one who believed in his tasks. He said further: "I will go forward.
I would greatly rejoice if men would understand me and would support
me in my desires." In this connection he spoke of the difficulty
every one encountered in his work on account of distrust. He again
recalled a passage from Ganghofer's "Schweigen im Walde" which had also
especially appealed to him because it had expressed his own point of
view concerning life. The passage runs: "He who distrusts, commits a
wrong against another and harms himself. It is our duty to believe that
every man is good so long as he does not give proof to the contrary."
"On this basis," said the Emperor, "I have always accepted every man
with whom I had anything to do. One may sometimes meet with unpleasant
experiences, but on that account he dare not give up. One must always
go on again with new trust in humanity and in life."

The Emperor then directed the conversation to a tablet which he had
had made and which contained, besides the above-mentioned quotation,
certain aphorisms of a like tenor from Ganghofer's novels.

These quotations appealed to him so strongly because they expressed
entirely his attitude toward life. With a good bit of optimism and a
bright and trustful outlook a man will go much further, not only in
his own personal life but in his vocation also, than he will if he
looks upon all things with a pessimistic eye; and even in politics
the case is the same. The German people certainly have a future, and
there is one word, "_Reichsverdrossenheit_" [sullenness toward imperial
destiny], which always offends him as often as he hears it. "What have
we to do with sullenness? Rather work and look forward. I work--yes,
not unwillingly--and I believe that I progress."

In connection with this word, the Emperor described the way in which
he worked every day and told how the difficulty of the many duties
and tasks which stormed in upon him often made him very weary. It
was at such times that the need overcame him to get out of harness
and see another part of the world, to become acquainted with other
men who stimulated him again. Thus, his journeys to the north always
invigorated him both mentally and physically.

The Emperor described earnestly and vividly how such a journey
gradually rested and refreshed him. In the first days there was of
course an abundance of work. Telegrams and letters came even to the
boat, and he and those about him could not leave work for long. Then it
became gradually more restful and solitary until eventually he found
complete rest and could give himself up to the glories of nature.
He then gave lively descriptions of his journeys, of the special
beauties of the fjords, and of his impression of the midnight sun. He
spoke especially of his pleasure at the simplicity and the cordiality
of the people, who responded to him so naturally. Everything that
oppressed him was cast aside for a few weeks--and yet the pleasures
which he received were begrudged him by many people. He knew that he
had always been called the "travelling Emperor," but he had always
taken it lightly and had not allowed his pleasure to be spoiled by it.
We discover friends in travelling, even in our own home. He believed
that the feeling of interdependence was strengthened in that way and
added that there were many Germans who did not know how beautiful
their own land was and how much there was to be seen in it. He always
rejoiced when he had learned to know a new portion of Germany. The
south especially seemed to him beautiful, and he was very much drawn
to it by the manner of life there. He always remembered, he said, with
particular pleasure a journey which he had made many years before to
Berchtesgaden and the beautiful days which he had been allowed to
spend in the hills behind it with his uncle, the Duke of Coburg. If
only travelling were not accompanied by so many inconveniences! It was
always necessary to take along so many paraphernalia. Often he longed
to seat himself in an automobile and go whizzing off for a few days,
to return satisfied and ready to work again. And such refreshment was
necessary in a serious calling like his own--doubly necessary because
he had to fight so much misunderstanding; it was a thankless situation,
because no one ever gave him credit for being independent. If he
succeeded in anything, then all the world asked: "Who advised him?"
If he was unsuccessful, then they said: "He did not understand it."
"What in the cases of other princes is accepted as self-evident becomes
in mine a matter of debate. And, nevertheless, the one answer is:
'Because I wish the good of the German Empire and of the German people.'

"Many times also I meet with pleasant experiences--and most often on
these very journeys which are made such a reproach to me." So the days
in Münich would remain an untroubled joy to him which he would never
forget. The warmth and heartiness in the behavior of the population
as well as the beautiful picture, gay with color, of the city in its
artistic decorations had completely charmed him.

The conversation then turned upon several questions of literature and
politics. The Emperor also related some anecdotes concerning his own
family, and here the intimacy with which he spoke was particularly
agreeable. He said merely, "my wife" and "my _Buben_" [boys]. In a
particularly sincere manner the Emperor spoke of our regents, whose
energy and self-sacrifice in such trying days he lauded, and expressed
the wish that the Great Prince might preserve us all for a long time to


NOVEMBER 17, 1906

    The policy of introducing legislation in the interest of the
    laboring classes may be said to have been inaugurated by Emperor
    William I in 1881. If one of its aims was to alleviate the
    condition of this class and to promote the welfare of Germany
    generally, another and perhaps its most important aim in Bismarck's
    eyes was to stem the growth of the Social Democratic party and
    bring about a greater sense of solidarity within the empire. In
    this latter aim of "taking the wind out of the sails" of the
    Social Democratic party it had not proved successful at the time
    of the accession of William II. He began his reign with the idea
    of making still further concessions and on this point broke
    with Bismarck. When these again failed to conciliate the Social
    Democrats, he took measures to legislate against them. He declared,
    as we have seen, on one occasion: "For me, every Social Democrat
    is synonymous with enemy of the nation and of the Fatherland."
    (May 14, 1889.) The fact that the party has continued to increase
    has always been a thorn in his side, and his attitude has been
    more or less contradictory with regard to the working classes; so
    that occasionally, as here, he seems to attempt to threaten and
    conciliate at the same time.

Twenty-five years ago to-day the late Emperor and King, William the
Great, made his memorable announcement, and I welcome the opportunity
of calling to mind with reverent gratitude this work of peace through
which my noble ancestor inaugurated new lines of legislation for
the protection of the economically weak. In obedience to his lofty
will, with the hearty approval of the allied governments and the
intelligent co-operation of the Reichstag, we succeeded in so advancing
the difficult and multifarious development of the state's labor
legislation, in the domain of sick, accident, and disability insurance,
that those deserving help in their day of need now possess a regularly
constituted legal claim. Thanks to the comprehensive acts of the
realm and of the employers as well as to their own contributions, the
laborers have hereby attained a much higher degree of security with
regard to their means of livelihood and the support of their families.
But the great and fruitful ideas in the imperial message have not
only inaugurated this condition in our own Fatherland but have served
as an epoch-making example far beyond her borders. Unfortunately,
through lasting opposition in the very quarter which believes that it
has a right to represent the interests of labor the fulfilment of the
highest aims of the imperial message is being checked and delayed.
Nevertheless, I believe that a recognition of what has been done and a
growing realization of the limits of the economically possible will in
all circles of the German people bring about its final triumph. Then
the hope of Emperor William that the laboring man's insurance would be
a lasting pledge of internal peace for the Fatherland will have been
fulfilled. With this in mind, it is my firm will that legislation in
the domain of social and political provisions should not cease, but
that it should be carried out toward the fulfilling of the highest
Christian duty with regard to the protection and the welfare of the
weak and needy. But the task proposed by the spirit of the imperial
message and its lofty framer cannot be carried out through merely legal
acts and provisions. I gladly recognize to-day that in the German
people there has never been a lack of men and women who willingly and
joyfully gave up their strength in loving service for the good of
their neighbor; and to all of those who devote themselves in unselfish
sacrifice to the great social work of our time I express my imperial

I commission you to bring this decree to general notice.

Issued to the Imperial Chancellor, Donaueschingen, November 17, 1906.

                                                    WILLIAM, I. R.



FEBRUARY 5, 1907--OCTOBER 18, 1911



    A number of scandals in army and colonial administration had been
    exposed in 1906. It will be remembered that for years back the
    Emperor had been insisting on union between the various religious
    creeds. This was perhaps due in part to a spirit of toleration,
    but to a larger extent it was due to the fact that the Centre
    party (Catholic) had for a number of years been in control. The
    Reichstag of 1906 was dissolved, ostensibly over the government's
    quarrel with the Centre party over the comparatively paltry sum of
    $2,000,000 demanded for the Southwest African colony. In reality
    the causes probably lay deeper. The late Reichstag had voted an
    insufficient sum for the navy and was beginning to object to the
    increasing taxes on the necessities of life. The Navy League was
    demanding a doubling of the German fleet. The government seemed to
    wish to undertake a more rapid policy of expansion. Mr. Barker
    is authority for the statement that leaders of the imperialistic
    agitation had gone so far as to recommend that if the Reichstag
    did not vote the credits necessary for doubling the fleet, a _coup
    d'état_ should be effected by the government and that it should
    levy the taxes and govern in case of necessity against the will of
    the Reichstag or without the Reichstag. The expansionist policy was
    strongly advocated by the Colonial party and the Navy League and
    was championed by the Chancellor. As the Social Democrats opposed
    increases in taxation, they were likewise now specially under the
    ban of official disapproval. There are usually about forty parties
    in the Reichstag. The issue was, therefore, clearly drawn between
    a policy of imperialism and a stronger insistence on world-policy,
    on the one hand, and Social Democracy and the opposition on the
    other. The Emperor and the Chancellor, particularly the latter,
    threw themselves vigorously into the campaign, and in spite
    of the support of the Centre party the Social Democrats lost
    thirty-six representatives and their representation was reduced to
    forty-three. Although the Social Democrats have to a certain point
    supported the policy of commercial expansion, their defeat here may
    be looked upon as the unconditioned triumph of imperialism.

    On the night of February 5, when it was announced that the Social
    Democrats had been defeated, a crowd gathered about the palace, and
    when the Emperor returned at about midnight from the meeting of the
    Electrical Society, where he had delivered an address, he stepped
    out on his balcony and made the following speech to the crowd:


With my whole heart I thank you for the beautiful demonstration of
homage which you have shown me. It arises from the feeling that you are
proud to have done your duty toward the Fatherland; in the phrase of
our Chancellor, you are able to ride, and you will ride down everything
that opposes us if all conditions and creeds stand together in firm
union. Do not allow this hour of celebration to end like a passing
wave of patriotic enthusiasm, but stand firmly to the path on which
you have started. I close with the words of the great poet Kleist in
his "Prince von Homburg" when old Kottwitz speaks to the Great Elector
somewhat as follows: "What do we care for the rules according to which
the enemy fights if he is beaten in the fighting? We have now learned
the art of conquering him and are filled with the desire to practise it

[42] The exact passage runs as follows, though the lines are separated
     in the play and do not occur in this order:

          "What, I pray you, do you care for the rule
          According to which the enemy fights, if only
          He goes down before you with all his flags?
          The rule that conquers him is the highest rule."

                                                  ACT V, SCENE 5.



    The following address of a general character, which represents the
    Emperor's faith in God and in Germany, was delivered at a banquet
    in the Westphalian Provincial Museum. It is somewhat similar in its
    general attitude to the one delivered about a month later at the
    unveiling of the national monument at Memel.

I wish to express to the representatives of the province whom I have
gathered about me to-day my warmest thanks for the way in which I have
everywhere been received in this beautiful country of Westphalia.
I would also like to repeat to you in the name of her Majesty, the
Empress and Queen, how disconsolate she is that it was unfortunately
not possible for her to celebrate the Westphalian days with you and to
come into personal contact with the Westphalian people.

The province of Westphalia offers an attractive picture of a state in
which it has been proved possible to reconcile historical, religious,
and industrial differences through love and loyalty for a common
Fatherland. The province is made up of several districts, of which
many have for a long time belonged to the crown of Prussia, while
many others have been but recently acquired. They, however, vie with
one another in their loyalty to our house. As I make no difference
between old and new districts, so I also make no difference between
the adherents to the Catholic and the Protestant creeds. Let them both
stand upon the foundation of Christianity and they are both bound to
be true citizens and obedient subjects. All the children of my country
stand equally near to my heart, which is devoted to the Fatherland. In
its industrial relations the province also offers a highly edifying
example. It shows that the great branches of industry do not need to
harm each other and that the welfare of the one works for the good of
the others also. The farmer diligently cultivates his red Westphalian
soil, holding fast to the traditions which have come down to him
from ages past; a sturdy character, with unyielding energy and lofty
purpose, of loyal nature, a firm foundation for our state. Therefore,
the protection of agriculture lies especially near my thoughts. Your
citizen brings his cities ever nearer to perfection; there are works
for the benefit of the public--museums and collections, hospitals and
churches. And deep in your mountains lie hidden the treasures which,
mined by the diligent hands of the brave mountain people, give to
industry the opportunity to develop itself--that industry, the pride of
the nation, wonderful in its progress, the envy of all the world. May
it be permitted to gather together further treasures for our national
wealth and to increase abroad the good reputation of the thoroughness
and excellence of German work.

In this connection I am mindful also of those laborers who, in these
vast industrial undertakings, tend the great blast-furnaces and of
those who, far from the daylight, accomplish their work with steady
hands in the leads of the mines. Consideration for them, for their
prosperity and their welfare I have taken over as a precious heritage
from my late grandfather, and it is my wish and my will, in the
province of such social regulations, to hold fast to the principles
laid down in the memorable message of Emperor William the Great.

The lovely picture of unity which the province of Westphalia presents
to the observer I would gladly see made general over our entire
Fatherland. I believe that for such a unity of all our citizens, of
all our conditions, only one means is possible, and that is religion.
Not, indeed, understood in the sense of strict theological doctrine,
but in the broader sense, practical for daily life. I must here go back
to my own experience. In the long period of my reign--it is now the
twentieth year since I came to the throne--I have had to do with many
men and I have had to endure much from them; many times unconsciously,
and unfortunately many times consciously, they have hurt me grievously.
And if at such moments I have been in danger of losing my temper and
thoughts of revenge have arisen, I have asked myself what were the
means best fitted to temper anger and increase moderation. The only
one which I have found is to say to myself: "All men are like you,
and, although they do you harm, they bear a soul born in the realms
of light above, to which we all wish to return, and through their
souls they have a part of the Creator within them." Whoever thinks
in this way will judge his fellow men mildly. If this idea of mutual
forbearance could only be spread among the German people, then the
first condition for a complete unity would be established. This can
only be accomplished if we tend toward one central ideal--the person of
our Redeemer, the Man who called us brothers, who lived as an example
for all of us--the most personal of all personalities. He still wanders
among the people, and we are all conscious of Him in our hearts. In
looking up to Him our people must find their union, and they must build
firmly upon His words, concerning which He Himself has said: "Heaven
and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away." If they
do that, then they will succeed. To such co-operation I should like
to-day to invite especially the men of Westphalia. For, as I have
before explained, in their province they have understood how to present
that charming spectacle of differences reconciled. They will also
understand me first and best. In this spirit let old and new districts,
citizens, farmers, and laborers hold together and unitedly work
together through loyalty and love for the Fatherland. Then the German
people will be the rock of granite upon which our Lord God can build
and complete his work of culture in the world. Then will the words of
the poet be fulfilled when he says: "In contact with German life, the
world will grow well again." To whosoever is ready to offer me his
hand on this I shall be most grateful and I will accept it joyfully,
no matter who or of what condition he may be. I believed that I would
be most quickly understood by the Westphalians, and therefore I have
turned to them.

I now raise my glass with the wish that God's blessing may rest upon
the red Westphalian earth and upon all its people, that I may be
permitted still longer to maintain peace in order that they may follow
their calling undisturbed. God bless Westphalia! The province of
Westphalia--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!



    In November and December, 1907, the Emperor paid a visit to
    England. On this occasion the degree of Doctor of Civil Law was
    conferred upon him by Oxford University. Ever since the Morocco
    incident, in 1905, the feeling between the two countries had been
    somewhat strained and newspapers on both sides of the channel had
    helped to foment discontent. To a group of English journalists who
    had visited Germany during the summer the Emperor gave an audience
    and addressed them as follows:


I greatly appreciate your greeting. It gives me pleasure to think that
your visit to Germany during the past summer has been so fruitful and
that you are satisfied with the welcome accorded you by my countrymen.
The power which you possess is great and extremely beneficial when it
is used as a means for strengthening the feeling of friendship among
the peoples. Your address shows that this task lies near to your
hearts. I thank you, therefore, for your appearance here to-day. I
rejoice to have seen you and hope that you will exert your influence
to foster between our two nations the friendly feelings which are so
necessary to the peace of Europe. We belong to the same race and have
the same religion. These are bonds which should be strong enough to
preserve harmony and friendship between us.



    The Emperor delivered the following address at a banquet after the
    imperial manoeuvres in Alsace-Lorraine. The general situation in
    Alsace-Lorraine has been discussed in connection with the address
    to the delegates of the _Landesausschuss_ on March 14, 1891.

I bid you, gentlemen, heartily welcome and express to you the warmest
thanks of the Empress and myself for the beautiful reception through
which, here as in Metz, the people of Alsace-Lorraine have given
so telling an expression of their love and loyalty. My heart also
bids me thank you once more for the restoration of the old castle of
Hohkönigsburg, especially the people of Lorraine for their patriotic
attitude and the donation of the charming Lorraine Room in the castle.
For more than thirty-seven years you have now been able to follow
your different callings in peace, and beautiful Alsace-Lorraine,
keeping pace with the unexpected development of the German Empire,
has in this time blossomed forth most joyously. As inhabitants of
this border-land, you naturally have the greatest interest in the
further maintenance of peace, and I rejoice to be able to express to
you my innermost conviction that the peace of Europe is in no danger.
It rests upon too firm a foundation to be easily disturbed through
instigations and slanders aroused in certain quarters by jealousy and
envy. A solid security of the first rank is afforded by the consciences
of the princes and statesmen of Europe who know themselves responsible
to God and feel for the life and prosperity of the people intrusted to
their charge. On the other hand, it is the wish and will of the people
themselves to make themselves useful in the further development of
the magnificent acquisitions of their progressive civilization and to
measure their strength in peaceful competition. And, finally, peace
will be secured and protected also through our forces on water and
on land--through the German people in arms! Proud of the unequalled
discipline and love of honor of her armies, Germany is determined,
without threatening others, to carry these to still greater heights and
so to expand as to further her own interests without either favoring
or doing harm to any one. With God's help and under the protection of
the German eagle, you can therefore follow still further your peaceful
callings and garner the fruits of your industry. May the blessing of
God rest upon your work at all times! Long life to the German province


OCTOBER 28, 1908

    Perhaps the most startling incident in the Emperor's reign and the
    most extraordinary evidence of what may be called his "personal
    diplomacy" policy was brought out by the publication of an
    interview in the _Daily Telegraph_ of London. German sympathies
    before and during the Boer War had been strongly pro-Boer. On the
    third of January, 1896, the Emperor had telegraphed to President
    Krüger: "I beg to express to you my sincere congratulations that,
    without help from foreign powers, you have succeeded with your
    own people and by your own strength in driving out the armed
    bands which attempted to disturb the peace of your country and in
    re-establishing order and in defending the independence of your
    people from attacks from outside."

    The German people had, therefore, assumed that the Emperor shared
    their friendliness toward the Boers and that the government was
    observing a policy of neutrality at least. When they learned
    that his General Staff had been called upon, and that he had
    prepared a plan of campaign against the Boers, a universal shout
    of protest was raised. The publication of this interview, which
    was designed to conciliate England, had a contrary effect upon
    Holland, and the feeling that their ruler was held down by no
    sense of responsibility was borne in forcibly upon the people.
    The matter was made the subject of innumerable controversies,
    debates in the Reichstag, and investigations. It was originally
    announced that the interview had been given to an English diplomat
    who had retired to private life. It was discovered that such was
    not the case. It had been granted to an English journalist who
    had written certain flattering articles about the Emperor. As for
    the text, it was admitted that it was substantially authentic; it
    had been shown to and had practically received the _visé_ of the
    German Foreign Office. The Emperor's Chancellor, however, had not
    seen the interview and under the storm of criticism offered his
    resignation. This the Emperor did not accept, and the Chancellor
    attempted to defend the Minister of Foreign Affairs. The Emperor
    withdrew and for a time, like Achilles, pondered in his tent. Even
    the Chancellor had to admit the Emperor's indiscretion and to
    inform his sovereign that it would be impossible to carry out any
    consistent foreign policy if the Emperor did not observe a proper
    reserve in his public and private utterances.

    Any number of projects were presented in the November debates
    of the Reichstag for changing the Constitution, to bring
    about co-operation between the Reichstag and the Emperor in
    the appointment and dismissal of Chancellors and declarations
    of war, and for introducing a law to bring about ministerial
    responsibility. Nothing came of these, however, and we shall see
    from the Königsberg speech (August 25, 1910) that the chastening
    which the Emperor had received on this occasion had no particularly
    lasting effect. Although both the interview and the telegram are
    undoubtedly authentic (the interview was published in official
    government organs in Germany, like the _Norddeutsche Allgemeine
    Zeitung_, and by the Wolff Bureau), they are not included in any
    official collection of the Emperor's utterances, and Penzler, of
    course, does not print them with the speeches. The interview as
    here given is taken from the account of the London _Times_, of
    October 29, 1908.

The Emperor, who is stated to have spoken with "impulsive and unusual
frankness," began by declaring that "Englishmen, in giving the rein
to suspicions unworthy of a great nation," were "mad as March hares."
"What more can I do," he asked, "than I have done? I declared with all
the emphasis at my command, in my speech at Guildhall, that my heart is
set upon peace and that it is one of my dearest wishes to live on the
best of terms with England.

"My task is not of the easiest. The prevailing sentiment among large
sections of the middle and lower classes of my own people is not
friendly to England. I am, therefore, so to speak, in a minority in my
own land, but it is a minority of the best elements, just as it is in
England with respect to Germany. That is another reason why I resent
your refusal to accept my pledged word that I am the friend of England."

The writer reminded his Majesty that "not England alone, but the whole
of Europe, had viewed with disapproval the recent action of Germany in
allowing the German consul to return from Tangier to Fez." His Majesty
replied, "with a gesture of impatience," that German subjects in Fez
were "crying for help and protection."

"And why not send him? Are those who charge Germany with having
stolen a march on the other powers aware that the French consular
representative had already been in Fez for several months when Doctor
Vassel set out?"

The Emperor then reverted to "the subject uppermost in his mind--his
proved friendship for England." It was commonly believed in England, he
said, that during the South African War Germany had been consistently
hostile to her. German opinion, he admitted, was hostile--"bitterly
hostile"; but not so official Germany. In fact, while other European
peoples had received and fêted the Boer delegates who came to solicit
European intervention, he alone had refused to receive them at Berlin,
"where the German people would have crowned them with flowers." His
Majesty continued:

"Again, when the struggle was at its height, the German Government
was invited by the governments of France and Russia to join with them
in calling upon England to put an end to the war. The moment had
come, they said, not only to save the Boer republics, but also to
humiliate England to the dust. What was my reply? I said that so far
from Germany joining in any concerted European action to put pressure
upon England and bring about her downfall, Germany would always keep
aloof from politics that could bring her into complications with a sea
power like England. Posterity will one day read the exact terms of the
telegram--now in the archives of Windsor Castle--in which I informed
the sovereign of England of the answer I had returned to the powers
which then sought to compass her fall. Englishmen who now insult me by
doubting my word should know what were my actions in the hour of their

These were not the only proofs which his Majesty had given of sympathy
with the British cause:

"Just at the time of your Black Week, in the December of 1899, when
disasters followed one another in rapid succession, I received a letter
from Queen Victoria, my revered grandmother, written in sorrow and
affliction, and bearing manifest traces of the anxieties which were
preying upon her mind and health. I at once returned a sympathetic
reply. Nay, I did more. I bade one of my officers procure for me as
exact an account as he could obtain of the number of combatants in
South Africa on both sides, and of the actual position of the opposing
forces. With the figures before me, I worked out what I considered to
be the best plan of campaign under the circumstances, and submitted
it to my General Staff for their criticism. Then I despatched it to
England, and that document, likewise, is among the state papers at
Windsor Castle, awaiting the serenely impartial verdict of history.
And, as a matter of curious coincidence, let me add that the plan which
I formulated ran very much on the same lines as that which was actually
adopted by Lord Roberts and carried by him into successful operation."

In conclusion, his Majesty dwelt upon the importance to Germany of a
powerful fleet. Germany must be able to protect her growing commerce
and manifold interests "in even the most distant seas." "Germany,"
he went on, "looks ahead. She must be prepared for any eventualities
in the far East. Who can foresee what may take place in the Pacific
in the days to come?" Looking to the accomplished rise of Japan and
the possible national awakening of China, he urged that "only those
powers which have great navies will be listened to with respect when
the future of the Pacific comes to be solved," and that even England
herself may welcome the existence of a German fleet "when they speak
together on the same side in the great debates of the future."



    With Prince Fürstenberg the Emperor journeyed from Donaueschingen
    to Manzell in order to be present at a flight of the dirigible
    Z-1. Count Zeppelin received the Emperor and conducted him in a
    motor-boat to the dirigible hangar. Prince Fürstenberg, Admiral
    von Müller, and General von Plessen ascended with the count. The
    Emperor did not make the flight. After the landing of the airship
    he bestowed upon Count Zeppelin the order of the Black Eagle with
    the following words:

In my name and in the name of our entire German people I heartily
congratulate your Excellency on this magnificent work which you have so
wonderfully displayed before me to-day. Our Fatherland can be proud to
possess such a son--the greatest German of the twentieth century--who
through his invention has brought us to a new point in the development
of the human race. It is not too much to say that we have to-day lived
through one of the greatest moments in the evolution of human culture.
I thank God, with all Germans, that he has considered our people worthy
to name you one of us. Might it be permitted to us all, as it has been
to you, to be able to say with pride in the evening of our life, that
we had been successful in serving our dear Fatherland so fruitfully!
As a token of my admiring recognition, which certainly all your guests
gathered here share with the entire German people, I bestow upon you
herewith my high Order of the Black Eagle. [Then followed the investing
by his Majesty and the head marshal, Prince Fürstenberg.] Now allow me,
my dear count, to bestow unofficially upon you the accolade! [Embraces
him three times.] His Excellency, Count Zeppelin, the Conqueror of the


HAMBURG, JUNE 22, 1909

    The Emperor, as an enthusiastic yachtsman, has made it a point
    to be present, as we have seen, at nearly all of the Hamburg
    regattas. As he was this year to visit the Czar in the furtherance
    of his "personal diplomacy," he had already been forced to decline
    their invitation; but finding it possible to attend at the last
    moment, he made all possible speed to arrive at Hamburg, where his
    recently constructed yacht _Meteor_ was to make her first start.
    The banquet, at which the Emperor spoke, took place on board the
    Hamburg-American Liner _Deutschland_.


I pray you accept my most cordial and heartfelt thanks for this
friendly greeting in the midst of men so well known and sympathetic
to me. It was, indeed, a severe struggle of conscience for me, placed
between my duty and my pleasure, to have to give up eventually the
pleasure of being the guest of Hamburg. But it goes without saying
that, as compared with the welfare of the realm, personal wishes must
be silent, and with a heavy heart I decided, therefore, to send word
that it would not be possible for me to be your guest and take part
in the series of sports. Happily, however, things arranged themselves
favorably. That ship which you all know, delivered to me by Vulcan, my
yacht _Hohenzollern_, has again competed with her ancient and renowned
reputation. We hurried and flew through the Baltic, and what the yacht
could not accomplish the railroad took care of; and so it was possible
for me to arrive in time for the splendid arrangements for the Hamburg
racing day and, while responding to the wishes of M. S.,[43] at the
same time to enter again that circle of men and women whom I prize
so highly. It is my duty on the present day to express my deepest
gratitude to the city of Hamburg for her warm and hearty reception,
which seems to increase from year to year, if that be possible. I must
also express my appreciation of the hospitality extended to me in the
house of your Magnificence, and also for the beautiful boat which I
have received from the hands of a Hamburg master of his craft. We have,
therefore, at last before us the proof for which I have been striving
for years--that, just as in the building of war-ships and of liners,
so too, in yacht construction, we now stand upon our own feet. It is a
worthy vessel, built with German hands, out of German materials, and
manned from stem to stern by German men. I hope that before the year is
out she will clip the waves and show herself to advantage in foreign
ports. We follow sport here, and not politics; but your Magnificence
has been good enough to touch upon points which now deeply move all
German hearts. I still hope that the sense of collective responsibility
will, in the hearts of the representatives of our people, be stronger
than party feeling, for I assume that no one among you wishes to take
upon his shoulders the responsibility of thwarting a reform which is
absolutely necessary to the Fatherland's internal and external welfare.
[Bravo!] You have followed with interest my journey to the Finnish
coast, where I was so warmly and hospitably received by his Majesty,
the Emperor of All the Russias, and by his people. I am pleased to
be in a position to give you, as representatives of the commercial
and business world, the following interpretation of the significance
of that visit, since you are particularly interested in the peaceful
shaping of the future. His Majesty, the Emperor, and myself have
agreed that our meeting is to be looked upon as an important pledge
of peace. As monarchs we consider ourselves responsible to God for
the weal and woe of our people, whom we wish to advance as far as
possible along peaceful paths and bring to fullest fruition. All
peoples need peace in order that under its protection they may devote
their undisturbed attention to the great cultural problems of their
economic and commercial development. For this reason we shall strive
as far as lies in our power to work, with the help of God, for the
furtherance and maintenance of peace. Naturally, in such a time,
sport also can be developed to the fullest degree. I therefore empty
my glass to the hospitable city of Hamburg and to my colleagues who
are here assembled. Three hurrahs for the city of Hamburg and the
Hamburg-American Line! Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!

[43] Max Schinckel, president of the Racing Club, who had invited the



    The following address was delivered at Karlsruhe by the Emperor
    after his return from Austria in 1909.

I extend to you my heartiest thanks for the friendly words of welcome
which in the name of the citizens of Karlsruhe you have offered me. I
have so often stopped here at Karlsruhe that I am no longer a stranger
among you. With you I have lived through joyful and sorrowful days.
On the present day, as you have said, I am here to inspect this
portion of our army. We Germans are a people who rejoice in weapons
and who lightly and joyfully wear our uniforms, because we know that
it preserves the peace for us in which alone our work can prosper.
The review from which I have just returned showed me the soldierly
sons of Baden, who, commanded by their distinguished sovereign, have
given me the deepest satisfaction. As long as there are wars our army
constitutes the "_rocher de bronze_" upon which peace is based. Our
army serves to protect it and to maintain the position in the world
which is rightfully ours. For this purpose also such strenuous days of
effort are devoted to its development. I am convinced that, if need
arises, with the help of God and under His protection, it will give
a fitting account of itself. I ask you, Herr Burgomaster, to be the
interpreter of my thanks and of those of her Majesty, the Empress, for
the splendid and hearty reception which the citizens of Karlsruhe have
offered us.



    It was at Königsberg that the coronation of the Emperor's
    grandfather took place, or rather, it was here that William I
    crowned himself King of Prussia. This express disclaimer of any
    responsibility to the people may be found in several speeches, but
    nowhere was the _ex me mea nata corona_ attitude more forcibly
    expressed than on this occasion. Ordinarily there had been no
    coronations in Prussia, as they were considered a useless expense.
    As the predecessor of Emperor William I had granted the people a
    constitution, William I was evidently going to insist upon his
    prerogative and did so by taking the crown unto himself and making
    his famous statement. His conduct and that of his predecessors has
    been discussed in chapter I.

My heart bids me express to the men of this province the pleasure
which her Majesty and I feel on finding ourselves again within the
borders of this beautiful country and on having been received with such
enthusiasm by the citizens of our loyal city and of the province. The
sentiment that finds expression now in Königsberg proves that it is
an entirely unique bond which joins the city and the province to our
house. And, in fact, if one looks back upon the history of the country
and of the house it becomes evident that great and important portions
are common to both. Here it was that the Great Elector, by his own
right, created himself the sovereign Duke in Prussia; here his son set
the King's crown upon his head; and the sovereign house of Brandenburg
thus became one of the European powers. Frederick William I established
here his authority as "_rocher de bronze_"; under Frederick the Great,
the province shared in the joys and sorrows of his reign. Then came
the difficult time of trial. The great soldier Emperor of the French
resided here, and after the power of Prussia had been shattered he let
both the city and the country feel his merciless hand. Here, however,
the thoughts of raising up and freeing the Fatherland were first put
into action. After Tauroggen,[44] when the old, unyielding York stirred
up the people with his flaming speeches, came the courageous decision
of the Prussian Diet to begin the work of liberation. And here my
grandfather, again, by his own right, set the Prussian crown upon his
head, once more distinctly emphasizing the fact that it was accorded
him by the will of God alone and not by parliament or by any assemblage
of the people or by popular vote, and that he thus looked upon himself
as the chosen instrument of Heaven and as such performed his duties as
regent and sovereign. And adorned with this crown, forty years ago,
he rode forth to battle to win the Emperor's crown also. Truly it
was a long way to the time of the famous telegram of the Emperor to
my late grandmother: "What a change through the providence of God!"
This picture would, however, be incomplete if I did not mention one
figure which especially in that year had occupied and gripped anew
the Prussians and, I may truly say, the whole German people. It is
not possible to think of the time of our collapse and our revival,
without remembering the figure of Queen Louise. The people of the
city of Königsberg and the province of East Prussia likewise saw this
angel in human form wandering among them and they were influenced by
her and helped her to bear her grievous ills. The noble Queen has been
described by many as going about among her subjects, and our people
hold her in grateful remembrance. But I think that one thing cannot be
sufficiently emphasized, and that is that in the general shattering of
our Fatherland, when even the statesmen and leaders of the army gave
up everything as lost, the Queen was the only one who never for one
moment doubted for the future of the Fatherland. Through her example,
through her letters, through her conversation, and through the bringing
up of her children she showed the people the way in which to find
themselves again. She showed them the way back to religion and with
it to a recognition of and a confidence in themselves. She encouraged
our people in the thought of rallying about the King again and of
winning back our freedom. And after she--a noble martyr--had faded
away and enthusiasm flamed forth in the land again and old and young
seized their weapons to drive the intruder from the country, then,
in spirit, she marched before the colors and inspired the warriors
with courage that the great work could be accomplished. What does the
noble figure of Queen Louise teach us? It teaches us that, as she once
imbued her sons with the one thought of restoring the country's honor
and of defending the Fatherland, so we men should cultivate all warlike
virtues. As in the time of the liberation young and old rallied to
the standard and gave everything they had--when even women and girls
did not spare their hair--so we must ever be prepared and keep our
equipment intact, in view of the fact that the neighboring powers have
made such astounding progress. For only upon our preparedness does our
peace rest. And what shall our wives learn from the Queen? They will
learn that the chief duty of German women lies not in the province of
meetings and club life, not in reaching out after imaginary rights so
that they may do as men do, but in the quiet work in the house and in
the family. They are to educate the younger generation, especially in
obedience and in respect toward their elders. They are to make clear
to their children and to their children's children that it is not a
question to-day of living their own life at the expense of others or
of achieving their own aims at the expense of the Fatherland, but that
they must singly and solely keep the Fatherland before their eyes and
singly and solely devote all their powers and their thoughts to the
good of the Fatherland. That is the lesson which has been bequeathed
to us by this noble figure whom the Fatherland and the citizens of
this city have so beautifully described on her simple monument as "the
good genius of the Prussian people." I cherish the hope that all of
the people of East Prussia who have gathered here will understand me
and that, as they return again to their work and their occupation,
they will think of these things. We must co-operate for the good of
the Fatherland, no matter who and where we are. And for me, too, the
conduct of this vanished Queen will be an example, as it was for
my grandfather. Looking upon myself as the instrument of the Lord,
without regard for daily opinions and intentions, I go my way, which is
devoted solely and alone to the welfare and peaceful development of the
Fatherland. But in this work I need the co-operation of every one in
the country and to this co-operation I would like to invite you also. I
empty my glass in the hope that this attitude may ever prevail in the
province of East Prussia and that it may lend me its assistance in my
labors. Long live the province of East Prussia!--Long may she prosper!

[44] In 1812 Prussia was ostensibly an ally of France. It was due to
     General York, the commander of the Prussian Auxiliaries, rather
     than to the Emperor's somewhat pusillanimous ancestor, King
     Frederick William, that Prussia was liberated from the rule of
     Napoleon. York commanded the Prussian troops who were to serve
     as auxiliaries to Napoleon. On December 30, 1812, he, on his
     own authority, concluded the convention of Tauroggen with the
     Russians by which he broke with the French and declared his corps
     neutral. The vacillating Prussian King, in spite of his country's
     humiliation, was too solicitous about maintaining his throne to
     dare venture upon any really decisive action. It was popular
     pressure far more than the King's (or even the Queen's) initiative
     which brought about the national uprising against foreign



    The active interest which the Emperor has always taken in higher
    education in Germany is evident in the following address. If he
    has given it a powerful organization he has taken from it by
    unconscious processes a large measure of its earlier freedom. The
    professorial caste has always been highly influential. During the
    Emperor's reign it has been pressed into his service. Its present
    system of organization and its connection with the government
    puts the Emperor, or at least the minister appointed by him,
    in a position to distribute rewards. It is said that there are
    practically no Social Democrats teaching in higher institutions of

    In the early years of its foundation the university of Berlin
    rendered immense services to the patriotic cause, especially
    through the work of Fichte and Schleiermacher.

To my loyal Frederick-William University, I offer greeting and
congratulations on this its hundredth anniversary!

From the day of its founding its fortunes have been intimately bound
up with those of the Prussian-German Fatherland. When my ancestor King
Frederick William III called it into existence a hundred years ago, he
did so in order to compensate the state with spiritual powers for what
she had lost in physical power. Thus the University of Berlin was born
out of the same creative genius from which sprung the regeneration of
Prussia. And this spirit, which raised up Prussian Germany and which
lived in Fichte, Schleiermacher, Savigny, and their friends, made
the university even in a few years the centre of the spiritual and
intellectual life of the Fatherland.

Truly, the University of Berlin was still far from being a _universitas
litterarum_ in the sense of William von Humboldt, but it has come ever
nearer and nearer to this ideal. A stronghold of wisdom, she has won,
far beyond the boundaries of Prussia and Germany, an international
significance. Through the exchange of teachers and students these
relations are visible externally. Through the activity which it shares
in common with the rest of the universities of the country it now forms
the "general institute of learning" which was intended at its founding.

In the meantime Humboldt's plan, which comprised besides the university
the totality of intellectual institutions, has not yet come to complete
realization, and these hours of consecration seem to me especially
fitted for preparing the way for the completion of what appeared to
him as the goal.

His great educational plan demanded, besides the academies of learning
and the university, independent institutes for research as an integral
part of the general educational organization. The founding of such
institutions has not kept pace in Prussia with the development of
the universities, and this defect, especially in our natural-science
equipment, is becoming more and more noticeable as a result of
the powerful forging ahead of the sciences. We need institutions
which reach out beyond the limits of the universities, institutions
untrammelled by aims of instruction, yet in close touch with the
academy and the university, which shall serve entirely for research.

To call such research institutes into being as soon as possible seems
to me a sacred duty of the present, and I hold it as my task, as father
of my country, to bespeak the general interest for this undertaking.
This high aim requires great expense and can be accomplished only if
all circles interested in the progress of the sciences and in the
welfare of the Fatherland are ready to co-operate in this significant
task and to make sacrifices for it. I should like, therefore, to-day
to lay upon the conscience and place before the eyes of every one the
new aim with the impressive warning: "_Tua res agitur._" I hope and
firmly trust that this work will succeed; indeed, although the plans
have been disclosed only to a limited circle, from various parts of the
country I have already received enthusiastic expressions of support and
very considerable means; between nine and ten million [marks] have been
placed at my disposal. I feel the need of expressing here in this place
my warmest thanks to these unselfish donors.

But to secure lasting support for this undertaking, it is my wish,
under my protection and my name, to found a society which shall set for
itself the task of erecting and maintaining institutions for research.
To this society I will gladly turn over the money given me for that
purpose. To see to it that the institutions so founded shall not lack
help from the state will be the care of my reign.[45]

[45] On the Emperor's initiative, the Emperor William Society for the
     furthering of the sciences was founded. It has already called into
     being two scientific institutes, the Emperor William Institute for
     Chemistry and the Emperor William Institute for Physical Chemistry
     and Electrical Chemistry. They were dedicated by the Emperor,
     October 23, 1912.

So may to-day be not only an occasion of jubilation for the University
of Berlin, but may it also signify a further step in the development of
German spiritual life!

And still one wish more I give to the university on its way into a new
century. May she, in loyal remembrance of the time of her founding,
preserve her Prussian-German character! Learning is, indeed, the common
property of the whole cultural world, and her acquisitions to-day
halt at no boundaries. And yet--as every nation must preserve its own
manner of life if it would emphasize its independent existence and its
value for the whole--may the _alma mater Berolinensis_ remain forever
conscious that she is a German university. As formerly, so may she be
for all time the seat of German manners and of German art! And may
every one who has the honor to investigate, to teach, and to study
within her walls devote himself to his task, filled with the sense for
truth and for thoroughness with the earnestness and the love for all
work which Goethe prized as the ornament of our people.

May the university further exercise her splendid privilege of fostering
true knowledge, which, as Humboldt has so well said, comes from man's
inner being to be planted again in his inner being, which creates and
reshapes character. Let her do this with that noble freedom which
sets laws unto itself and with that sense of exaltation which comes
from being the administrator of a treasure which belongs to the
whole of humanity. "_Communis hominum thesaurus situs est in magnis
veritatibus._"[46] But all truth is God's, and His spirit rests upon
every work which is grounded in and strives toward the truth. May this
spirit of truth live also in you students; may it be found in all the
workings of my dear institution of learning! Then will her age be like
her youth; she shall remain a city upon the hill, to which the peoples
make pilgrimage, and an ornament and treasure of the Fatherland.

[46] This phrase is taken from Leibnitz's dedication of the
     _Miscellanea Berolinensia_ to King Frederick I.


OCTOBER 27, 1910

    The Emperor and Empress, accompanied by the Princess Victoria
    Luise, came to Brussels in order to repay the visit which the King
    and Queen of Belgium had made to Potsdam in May, 1910. At the time
    of the visit of King Albert to Berlin the Emperor did not take part
    in the festivities, as he was suffering from a wound in the hand.
    The honors were done by the Crown Prince. The Emperor's speech at
    the banquet at the Royal Palace in Brussels calls for no comment.

The sincere words of friendship which your Majesty, in the name of her
Majesty, the Queen, has just addressed to us, the Empress, my daughter,
and me, as they sprang from warm hearts are welcomed by warm hearts.
We remember with greatest pleasure the visit which your Majesties made
to us last spring at Potsdam, and it was a welcome duty of gratitude
to return it as soon as possible. The brilliant reception prepared for
us by your Majesties and the Belgian people in this splendid capital
has stirred us to the depths and inspires us to heartier thanks in that
we see in it an expression of the close bond which unites not only our
families but our peoples. It is with friendliest sympathy that I and
all Germany follow the astounding results which have accrued to the
untiring energy of the Belgian people in all departments of trade and
industry, the crowning display of which we have seen in the brilliantly
successful World Exposition of this year. Belgian commerce embraces the
whole circle of the earth, and it is in the peaceful work of culture
that Germans and Belgians everywhere meet. Their cultivation of the
more spiritual arts fills us with similar wonder when we behold to what
a conspicuous place the poets and artists of Belgium have attained.
May the trustful and friendly feelings, to which in recent times the
relations of our governments bore such pleasing evidence, be ever more
closely preserved! From your Majesty's reign may happiness and blessing
stream forth upon your house and upon your people! It is with this
wish, which comes from the very depths of my heart, that I propose
long life to your Majesties, the King and Queen of the Belgians!



    The Emperor had been a student at the Friedrichs Gymnasium in
    Cassel, and in 1875 his parents had presented a flag to the school,
    which had now to be replaced. In turning over the new flag to the
    first man in the upper class, the Emperor took occasion to give the
    students certain advice, particularly with regard to the use of
    alcoholic beverages. His attitude here marks a decided innovation
    in Germany, and if his address is compared with the one delivered
    at Bonn (April 24, 1901), it will be seen how keenly aware he is of
    the changing tendencies of the times.

I have decided to have a new flag woven for the upper class instead of
the one which my parents bestowed when I was a student and which has
fallen a victim to time. The high school has asked to have the old one
back again; I will have it mended so that it may be hung. I wish you to
remember, through it, that from your walls and your studies a German
Emperor has gone forth.

You have been busy with the studies of antiquity. Do not lay too much
stress upon the incidents of their political life; for these relations
have so changed that they cannot be applied to the present. You may
well rejoice in many of the great figures and characters of antiquity,
but Greek culture has one special trait which no other nation has
shown. The harmony which our own time so sadly lacks, the Greek people
showed in art, in life, in their motions, in their dress, yes, even in
their systems of philosophy, and in the handling of their problems. I
especially advise you to read what Chamberlain so trenchantly says on
this point in the Introduction to his "Foundations of the Nineteenth

And then, above all, strive to know the history of your Fatherland.
Learn to know the misery of our people in the later years of the
Middle Ages, in the struggles between church and state and between the
princes, in the strife of creeds during the Thirty Years' War, when
our people were trodden down and brought into the service of foreign
peoples and dynasties with whom its interests had nothing in common,
until the final great downfall in the time of Napoleon. The year 1870
first brought us a united German state again. And if you enter upon
a political career, keep your eye upon the field as a whole, and do
not be disturbed by parties. For these shove their interests before
those of the Fatherland and often draw a curtain between you and it.
And if your political efforts threaten to bewilder you, I advise you
to withdraw from them for a time--travel or go on a walking tour--and
let Nature have her way. Then when you return you will have a clearer
vision of the real relations. If at any time the waves overwhelm you,
if the many phenomena of modern art and literature bewilder and depress
you, you can always turn to these ideals of antiquity as a means of
recovering your balance.

You are now ready to enter the university. Therefore I would like to
give you one more counsel, which you must not take lightly, for it is
to me a very serious matter. Alcohol is a great danger to our people,
which, believe me, gives me great anxiety. I have led the government
now during twenty-three years, and through the reports which pass
through my hands I know how many crimes have been committed through
alcohol. Direct your gaze for a moment to a neighboring land. The
Americans are far ahead of us in this. At their universities there they
do great things, as you may convince yourselves, since so many students
come to us from there. There, at the reunions and at the great academic
gatherings--for instance, at the inauguration of a president--no wine
is seen on the whole table; and they get along very well without it. If
you enter the university, steel your body through sport and through
fencing--a thing I would blame in no one--or through rowing; but do
not seek to make a record for yourself by seeing who can gulp down the
greatest number of intoxicating drinks. Those are customs which come
to us from another time. If you will take this attitude in the corps
and societies, I shall be grateful to you. We have other tasks now than
they had in former years and must strengthen our knowledge of national
economy and finances. For it is worth Germany's while to protect her
position in the world, especially in the world market. Therefore we
must all hold fast together.

I herewith turn the flag over to you. The _primus omnium_, so I
understand, will carry it and will consider it an honor that he is the
first one to do so.



    After a religious service for the army, the Emperor and Empress
    visited the race-course at Grossborstel. The relations between
    Germany and England were becoming strained. At the time of the
    uprising in Morocco on the twenty-first of May, 1911, the French
    general Moinier took measures, so he said, to protect Europeans
    in Morocco and later besieged certain native cities. Germany,
    pursuing her world-policy, immediately sent the gunboat _Panther_
    and later the cruiser _Berlin_ to the harbor of Agadir, and assumed
    a threatening attitude, as she had done at Tangier and as Admiral
    Diedrichs had done at Manila. When the English made it plain that
    they would support France, in accordance with the _entente_ reached
    in 1904, with regard to Morocco and Egypt, feeling between the two
    nations became tense and has remained so. The Emperor here, while
    insisting upon the place in the sun, is at the same time insisting
    on friendly competition. (See the discussion of the speech of March
    31, 1905.)


As often as her Majesty and I have the happy opportunity of coming to
Hamburg, it becomes our duty to express our gratitude for the joyful
reception and warm, heartfelt greeting which is accorded us by all
classes of the Hamburg citizens. We have felt this again to-day and are
constrained to express anew our thanks for the welcome on the part of
the city. It is an index of how close the relations have become between
the citizens of Hamburg and our house. As the highest commander of my
army, I would at the same time like to express the joy I take in the
fact that the Hanseatic cities are now about to express again their
lively interest and their love and fondness for the regiments which
bear their names. To me it is a proof that the relationship between
the garrisons and their cities is a deep and a close one, and that they
are proud to give some outward recognition for the service which their
sons have rendered in the past and for the zeal which they showed in
their work of peace.

When, yesterday, the city of Hamburg enthusiastically greeted a portion
of that army which has so long maintained peace, she did a very proper
thing, for she understands that under the protection of peace she can
devote herself to her labors. She is a world city and is situated on
one of the greatest rivers of our Fatherland, and the breath of the sea
and the wave beat of the tides come to her wharves. Just as for the
human body, it is necessary for a nation to breathe in order to live.
The breath of the body politic gives it life and strength. This breath
is commerce. Long ago the far-sighted Great Elector coined the phrase:
"Trade and navigation are the two main pillars of my state."

In the twenty-three years since I mounted the throne it has been a
pleasure to me to follow the progress which the Hanseatic cities and
especially Hamburg have achieved in their restless advance. If I do
everything that I can on my side to help the Hanseatic cities, it is a
duty that I gladly discharge.

But we need not wonder that the great increase of trade in our
newly united Fatherland has disquieted many people in the world. I,
nevertheless, believe that in the domain of commerce competition is
healthful; it is necessary in order to spur on states and nations to
new achievement. Indeed, it is the same thing with sports, as we have
seen to-day at the magnificent race-course, where before the eyes of
thousands of Hamburg's men and so many of her beautiful women the
officers of my army rode in competition. There we see one rider who in
thought has already won first prize, and on the right and on the left
the next two work up to him and it becomes an earnest contest between
the three. Then he who up to this point was at the head reaches for his
whip, not in order to strike his two rival riders but his own horse,
and he gives him the spur. In the same way competition between nations
can be fought out in peace.

The powerfully developing German fleet of war, which is distinguished
by its cult of manliness and discipline, has in the last decades been
created by the German people as a protection to trade and navigation.
It represents the will of the German people to count for something
upon the seas. This growing young fleet is particularly proud of the
interest of Hamburg's citizens. If, then, I have correctly interpreted
this expression of your enthusiasm, I believe that I dare assume that
it is your purpose to further strengthen our fleet in order that we
may be certain that no one will dare challenge the "place in the sun"
which should be rightfully ours. I, therefore, raise my glass to the
health of the Hanseatic cities, and especially to Hamburg, the greatest
of them all! The gentlemen know what I think about Hamburg and how I
feel myself bound to her. And at the risk of repeating myself I say it
again: the citizens of Hamburg and I understand each other! The city of
Hamburg--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!


AIX, OCTOBER 18, 1911

    The special fondness of the Emperor for Aix is indicated in the
    address of June 19, 1902. With his assistance the cathedral had
    been restored in this year, and a marble tablet had been set
    up in his honor. If the Emperor's father was concerned about
    restoring the splendor of the crown, it is also true that he was
    by nature one of the most liberal of the Hohenzollerns. The book
    which Frederick I gave his son to read was in all probability the
    magnificent volume, "Die Reichskleinodien" by Doctor Fr. Bock,
    published in Vienna in 1864.


You have strengthened with your friendly words of greeting the deep
impression which I received to-day as I found myself within your walls.
I thank you, the city magistrates and the citizens, most heartily
for this memorable day. I do not see how the eightieth birthday
of my father, who was all too soon taken from us, could have been
celebrated more beautifully than through the solemn unveiling of the
magnificent equestrian statue dedicated to his memory, which we owe
to the unselfish reverence of the citizens of Aix for the favorite of
the German people. I congratulate the city on this new monument, which
will serve as a bond and a joy for generations yet unborn. It will
indicate that, in spite of all the frictions and political, social,
and religious differences of our time, a firm bond of love and trust,
nevertheless, surrounds and binds together the prince and the people.

If ever a prince deserved a monument here in Aix it was my late
father. From my childhood I had occasion to observe with what interest
he devoted himself to the study of the German Emperors and of their
traditions and how deeply he was impressed by the power of their
position and the splendor of the old German imperial crown. When as a
lad I played in his room and had earned some reward through my good
behavior, he allowed me to turn the leaves of a magnificent volume in
which were represented the jewels, insignia, robes, and weapons of the
Emperors, and finally, in brilliant colors, the crown itself. How his
eyes glistened when he told stories of the coronations at Aix with
their ceremonies and banquets, of Charlemagne, of Barbarossa, and their
greatness! He always closed by saying: "That must all come again, the
power of the empire must rise, and the glitter of the Emperor's crown
must shine forth once more. Barbarossa must be freed from the tower
again!" And it was granted him by Providence to play a large part in
the accomplishment of this great work. On the bloody field of battle he
helped his honored father to win the Emperor's crown and the unity of
the German people.

Educated by my father for the high position which was one day to be
mine, I grew up in wonder and in reverence for the Emperor's crown,
which, with its burden and its responsibility, I have taken over from
him. It is a sacred jewel from which, under God's protection, many
blessings have gone forth upon the Fatherland and which has proved
itself a shield for the national honor. All Germans can look up to
it with trust, and it will show itself the stronger the more it is
surrounded and supported by loyal affection and earnest co-operation.

As my forefathers bestowed their special favor upon Aix, so with me
it has always been a pleasure to be able to show her my interest and
good wishes, within whose walls here, in the extreme western part
of the empire, German culture and German manners have found a place
fortified by a famous past and traditions many hundred years old. May
the city in the future also, with her salutary springs and beautiful
wooded hills, with her manifold industries and her far-reaching
commerce, grow, flourish, and prosper! May the citizens, through
loyalty to God, King, and Fatherland, pursue their work and enjoy the
fruits of their industry in peace! The old imperial city and her loyal
citizens--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!



FEBRUARY 7, 1912--JUNE 23, 1914



    As a result of the Morocco crisis and the increasing imminence of
    international difficulties, the war footing of the German army
    had been increased to 3,860,000 men. The navy had been steadily
    extended, and projects for further increases in both army and navy
    were to be introduced at this session of the Reichstag and to
    be granted. The question of taxation was becoming more and more
    serious. In view of the project for increased armament and higher
    taxation, Chancellor von Bethmann-Hollweg had earnestly urged all
    parties to unite against the Social Democrats. His efforts were
    not nearly so successful as had been those of Bülow in 1907. One
    hundred and ten Social Democrats were returned. It is perhaps
    significant that at this session the Reichstag voted a bill
    creating a German oil company, which was to conduct its operations
    under the supervision of the government and thus render Germany
    more independent of foreign countries in this regard.


In the name of the affiliated governments, I bid the newly elected
Reichstag welcome!

To maintain the solid framework of the empire and the order of the
state undisturbed, to increase the welfare of the people in all classes
and conditions, to protect and raise the strength and credit of the
nation is the aim of all my efforts. In this I find myself in accord
with my honored colleagues, and I cherish the conviction that you, as
the chosen representatives of the nation, will exert your best powers
in this common work.

For a generation past questions of social regulation have occupied
a prominent place in the legislation of the realm. Even at the last
session of the previous Reichstag the benefits of insurance were
extended to a large portion of the population. The same social spirit
with which the work has previously gone forward must prevail even
further. For development does not stand still.

The finances of the realm have attained a firm position. On the basis
of definitely calculated contributions from the states, we have
succeeded in establishing a balance in the imperial economy, and by
the help of the surplus which resulted we have relieved the excess of
the budget. By holding fast to the rigorous policies in vogue up to
the present, the empire will within a short time arrive at a complete
restoration of its finances.

It fills me with satisfaction when I think to what a point the free
spirit of enterprise has attained in industry and crafts, in trade,
and in commerce, and how, through the increasing perfection of its
technic, agriculture has gradually blossomed forth again. In view of
this gratifying progress, the affiliated governments will henceforth
not neglect to strengthen the foundation of our customs policy by means
of alterations and the addition of new trading regulations.

A project which will be shortly put before you is to serve for the
strengthening of the German interests in foreign countries. It
regulates dependence upon the empire and the state in such a way that
it will be easier for natives of Germany in foreign parts to remain
citizens of the empire, or, in case they have lost their imperial
rights, to recover them again.[47]

[47] This project resulted in a law promulgated by the Emperor July 22,
     1913. It has been made the subject of considerable hostile comment
     in foreign countries, as it would seem under certain conditions,
     not definitely fixed, to permit a German subject to divide his

     Article 17 of this law asserts that (German) citizenship is
     lost through the acquiring of citizenship in a foreign country.
     It, however, refers to Article 25, which makes the following

     Art. 25, Sec. 2. Citizenship [German] shall not be lost by him
     who, before acquiring citizenship in a foreign country, shall,
     on his request, have received the written permission to retain
     [German] citizenship from the proper authority in his home
     state. The German consul is to be consulted before granting this

     Art. 25, Sec. 3. The Imperial Chancellor, on a vote of the
     Bundesrat, can decree that the permission specified in Section 2,
     shall not be granted to persons who wish to acquire citizenship in
     a specified foreign state.

     On the face of it, this decree would seem to be open to the
     interpretation that it lies within the power of the German
     Bundesrat to allow a man who has ostensibly acquired citizenship
     in a foreign country to be counted as a German citizen.

The success of our work of peace at home and overseas depends upon
the empire's remaining powerful enough to stand for and protect its
national honor, its possessions, and its rightful interests in the
world at all times. On this account it is my continual duty and care
to maintain and strengthen by land and by sea the armies of the German
people, which does not lack young men capable of bearing arms. Bills to
this end are in preparation and will be laid before you together with
proposals which will provide for the increased expenditure. If, Honored
Sirs, you help to carry out this great project you will be doing the
Fatherland a great service.

We have given a new proof of our willingness to settle international
points of dispute amicably wherever this can be done in accordance with
the dignity and the interests of Germany, through the conclusion of
our agreements with France. In addition to strengthening our alliances
with the Austro-Hungarian monarchy and the kingdom of Italy, my policy
is directed toward the maintenance of friendly relationships with all
powers on the basis of mutual respect and good-will.

I trust the healthy power of the German people, and, counting upon the
support of a gracious God, I look out hopefully over the struggles of
the day toward the future of the empire. Therefore, at the beginning of
a new legislative session, I offer you, Honored Sirs, my greeting in
the hope that your activities will be exerted for the benefit of the
people and the country.


MAY 30, 1912

    The indications of particular good-will which the Emperor had
    always exhibited for the Brandenburgers and the marks of special
    favor which he had seemed to accord to them have occasionally
    aroused a certain suspicion, not to say ill will, in the minds of
    some of his South German subjects. In his hereditary provinces,
    Brandenburg and Prussia, it will be noticed that the Emperor had
    always expressed himself most freely with regard to his personal
    pretensions that he ruled by divine right alone. The two speeches
    which have been most criticised in this respect are the ones
    delivered at Breslau (February 3, 1899) and Königsberg (August 25,
    1910). They served, unfortunately, to accentuate the differences
    which existed between the subjects in various parts of the empire
    and to remind them that they had a Prussian Emperor. If certain
    portions of his audiences here acquiesced in these pretensions of
    their hereditary ruler and were somewhat proud of the particular
    confidence he vouchsafed to them, critics, and even conservative
    critics, referred to these ideas of "_Gottesgnadentum_,"
    grace-of-Godism, with touches of what was at least irony. After
    the unfortunate crisis following the _Daily Telegraph_ interview
    Chancellor von Bülow had felt constrained to request the Emperor
    "henceforward to observe, even in private interviews, that reserve
    which is indispensable both to the interests of a consistent policy
    and to the authority of the crown." As we have seen, in spite
    of the Emperor's seeming acceptance of this necessity, it had
    not modified to any particular extent the tenor of his speech at
    Königsberg in 1910. It may be that by this time (1912) he had taken
    the admonition to heart, for it will be noticed that, though we
    have the customary reference to Frederick of Hohenzollern and the
    glorification of his ancestors, and also the marks of special favor
    and trust in the Brandenburgers, we miss any mention of the theory
    of divine right.

    La Fontaine has said that it is difficult to please every one and
    his father. The Emperor must have felt this when he learned that
    certain of his subjects, nevertheless, resented that closing part
    of his speech which would seem to imply that the Franco-Prussian
    War was a sort of family affair through which the grateful
    Brandenburgers decided to present the imperial crown to their
    beloved overlord. Through such an interpretation the position and
    interests of Bavaria, for instance, became for Bavarians somewhat
    too incidental. If, then, foreign critics have drawn a distinction
    between Prussia and Germany, the distinction has, therefore, a
    certain warrant, since it seems to be made by the Emperor himself.
    The heir to the Bavarian crown took occasion to object in one of
    his speeches to the conception that the affiliated sovereigns are
    "vassals of the Emperor." That he should have gone so far would
    indicate that, in his mind at least, there was a disposition to
    make them so. He was even more emphatic in a speech delivered in
    May, 1900, before the Association for the Furtherance of Inland
    Navigation in Bavaria. "I do not see," he said, "why we, if we
    belong to the German Empire should not enjoy precisely the same
    rights and privileges as North Germany, for the German Empire was
    welded together just as much through Bavarian blood as through
    the blood of any other German stock; and for that reason we do
    not wish to be regarded as minor brothers, but as brothers with
    full rights and privileges." So, too, it is said that the King
    of Würtemberg left the Emperor's side in anger and withdrew from
    the army manoeuvres in 1894. It will be plain to any one who
    reads the Emperor's speeches that very few of them are made in
    South Germany. Münich, Leipzig, and Stuttgart have been visited
    by him less frequently than certain foreign capitals. This is due
    in part, no doubt, to the fact that the reigning sovereigns of
    these capitals do not wish to see a greater at their side. But it
    is likewise true that in most of these districts the Emperor's
    reception at the hands of the populace would be far less warm
    than that accorded to him at Breslau and Berlin; for, if the
    Emperor is warranted in expecting a particular loyalty from his
    Prussians and Brandenburgers, so, too, are the hereditary rulers of
    Bavaria, Saxony, and Würtemberg warranted in expecting a particular
    recognition at home, which must necessarily be deducted from the
    possible tribute which can be paid the Emperor, who is likewise a
    rival King and King of a province which has not always enjoyed the
    favorable consideration of South Germans.

    It was on this day, May 30, five hundred years before that the
    Burgrave Frederick VI of Hohenzollern, the later Elector Frederick
    I, entered the fortified place of Brandenburg, on the Havel. In
    commemoration of this fact, a fountain and an equestrian statue
    of the Elector by Professor Manzel were dedicated. The church of
    St. Catherine had likewise been restored and was rededicated on
    this day. After the unveiling, the Emperor proceeded to the old
    town hall, where he inscribed his name in the city's Golden Book,
    and after he had accepted the drink of honor offered him by the
    burgomaster, he delivered the following address:

I am deeply grateful to the city of Brandenburg for having thought
of inviting me to its celebration. It has been a celebration whose
importance extends far beyond the walls of Brandenburg, and I rejoice
that the Brandenburgers should have wished to have their Elector and
Margrave with them, just as it goes without saying that the Elector
is pleased when he can tarry among his Brandenburgers. The changes of
history which have swept over the German Fatherland have called forth
and laid tasks upon many a dynasty, and finally it was the dynasty of
my ancestors who first succeeded after many difficulties in laying the
corner-stone for the great work and at last in building up the work
itself--the establishment of German unity on a Brandenburger basis and
under the leadership of Prussia. We must not forget that it must have
been a difficult decision for the ruler of the land in those days and
the later Elector to undertake the task of coming into this country and
of bringing it back again to a flourishing condition. For he came from
the sunny south, which had progressed in culture and whose knighthood
at that time was also in its fullest flower of cultural development.
We have already learned from reliable lips what a frightful situation
existed at that time in the unhappy mark. And if he was successful in
re-establishing order little by little and in sowing the seeds for new
flowers, nevertheless the mark had to pass through many grievous storms
and became the arena of foreign powers and foreign lords. But at last
the Great Elector and the great King drove away the foreigners once
for all and won for the people of the mark and of Prussia the right
to live for themselves without having to see the products of their
industry and labor fall a prey to the caprices of strangers. And when
at last, through the help of God, the Prussian edifice was completed
and my grandfather, in the long period of peace, had sharpened the
sword which he must needs have in order to achieve German union, then
for a second time, on a grander scale, the same work was accomplished
which had previously been accomplished for the mark. And he succeeded
in finally forbidding the strangers to trample upon our fields and to
destroy our labor for the mere sake of following their own interests.
The German Empire and the German crown rest upon a Brandenburg basis
and a Prussian foundation. On that account we wish on this day to
remember the people of the mark and of Brandenburg and not least the
Brandenburgers who in 1870 risked their lives and all that was near and
dear to them in order to win the imperial crown for the old master. As
long as a Hohenzollern lives and as long as there are Brandenburgers
both of them will remember Constantine Alvensleben, Vionville, and the
Third Corps.[48] This was the old Brandenburger loyalty which had been
preserved through all the centuries, and I hope that this loyalty may
be the possession of the coming generations of the city of Brandenburg.
And I drink this cup in the hope that this loyalty may never be

[48] Constantine Alvensleben, commander of the Third (Brandenburg) Army
     Corps, played an important part in the battle of Vionville, on the
     16th of August, 1870. He checked the French army operating from
     Metz and held it until the arrival of reinforcements.


HAMBURG, JUNE 18, 1912

    As usual, the Emperor was present at the meeting of the North
    German Regatta Association. Since 1897 he had been absent but
    once. Certain references in his address here doubtless refer
    back to the outcome of events at Agadir. It is difficult to tell
    whether or not he is on the defensive. Whatever his qualities or
    defects, it cannot properly be said that he has often or indeed
    ever publicly weakened in a position which he had once taken. He
    has, however, occasionally shifted his ground. Criticism, instead
    of giving him pause, has usually had the effect of angering him
    and of immediately drawing his fire upon his critics. So, in
    regard to the criticism of his agrarian policy on the part of the
    Prussian land-owning nobility, he replied that "opposition on the
    part of the Prussian nobility is monstrous" [_ein Unding_]. As the
    opposition had been directed solely against certain policies and
    not against him personally, his statement implies that he expected
    the Prussian nobility to support him in all of his positions. He
    expected personal loyalty. As some of his opponents were members of
    the Prussian Landtag, it is difficult to see what would become of
    the idea of representative government in case the representatives
    of the people waived their opinions and those of their constituents
    in his favor. Some of the sharpest criticism which the Emperor
    incurred was that which followed the incidents at Tangier in 1905
    and at Agadir in 1911. In both cases what may be called the war
    party showed great resentment, and certain of the criticisms made
    by them seem to indicate that war, to them, was a consummation
    devoutly to be wished, and the failure to make war at these
    opportunities was looked upon as a defeat. The Emperor seems here
    to be insisting upon the fact that the flag has not been dishonored.

Your Magnificence will certainly allow me to thank you for the address,
which glowed with flaming patriotism and which was delivered with such
a sweep of oratory that, I am convinced, it carried away all those
here assembled. We saw from the sketch which your Magnificence has
given us how in all centuries the history of our empire and of our
people, although in general attached to the Continent, nevertheless
always stood in close relationship with the water and the sea and that
it has always been more or less influenced by it. But as you have
shown, we formerly failed in gathering together our strength. The
flourishing of the Hansa, interesting and beautiful, and for a time
powerful as it was, had to pass away, because it lacked the support
of the imperial power. Through the founding of the empire under my
grandfather all things were changed, and now the German merchant can go
his way peacefully, not under a foreign but under his own flag; he can
exercise all his capacities and be sure that, when it is necessary, the
protection of the empire will stand behind him. That is only possible
when all our powers are united under our German flag. But, as you all
know, gentlemen, the flag must wave in honor; and it dare not lightly
spread its folds to the wind nor be lightly set up where we are not
sure of being able to defend it. You will understand why I have acted
with this reserve in extending the reach of the German flag where many
perhaps would have desired and longed to see it. I have allowed myself
to be guided by an old Hanseatic proverb which stands in significant
letters over the town hall at Lübeck: "The little flag is easily tied
to the staff, but it is difficult to haul it down with honor." Now,
gentlemen, I believe that I can say without fear of contradiction that
up to the present no one has ever dared offer an indignity to our flag
so long as I have been reigning. I will promise and hold to it that
wherever you go ahead there my flag shall follow you. That is true in
great as in little things. Every man binds his flag to the staff in the
morning and hopes to conquer. Not every one is successful. In spite of
that, we rejoice that on this day of the Elbe regatta not only German
but also many boats of related and friendly peoples are present and
make the scene a picturesque one. Therefore we rejoice, and again I
whole-heartedly express the hope that sailing and water sport on the
Elbe and on the Baltic, on the inland lakes as on the sea, may grow and
prosper. We, however, who have gathered here under the flag of Hamburg,
on the beautiful ship of the Hamburg-American Line, raise our glasses
and drink to the health of the city of Hamburg and all seamen here
assembled. The city of Hamburg--Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!


BONN, OCTOBER 17, 1913

    Nineteen hundred and thirteen was a jubilee year in the history
    both of Germany and in the Emperor's reign. In the first place,
    it was the one-hundredth anniversary of the famous battle of the
    nations at Leipzig, which marked the turning of the tide in the
    fortunes of Napoleon. On innumerable occasions the Emperor, in
    the speeches already printed, has referred to this crisis in
    the affairs of Germany; he was, curiously enough, not to make
    the address on this famous occasion, for the celebration was
    to take place at Leipzig and the addresses were made by Doctor
    Clemens and by the King of Saxony. The journals noted that during
    the address of Doctor Clemens the Emperor, who was present,
    showed no enthusiasm and looked bored. The joyous occasion had
    been clouded by the unfortunate accident to the naval Zeppelin
    L-2 on the previous day. As the Emperor had succeeded to the
    throne on the fifteenth of June, 1888, the year marked also the
    completion of twenty-five years of his reign, and the week of
    June 15 had been one of continual celebration and many speeches.
    He issued innumerable pardons and conferred many titles and
    decorations, among them the title of general on his Chancellor,
    Von Bethmann-Hollweg. His many speeches were, however, for the
    most part, merely acceptances of congratulations and, aside from
    the renewed expression of his hope to maintain peace, are not
    particularly significant to the student. The sense of increased
    tension is evident everywhere and seems to have reacted upon
    him, as he does not express himself with his former enthusiasm.
    He repeats his old themes, the necessity of disregarding party
    divisions and in particular the need of holding fast to religious
    ideals and of moral regeneration.

    On the seventeenth of October, 1913, on the eve of the great
    national celebration, the naval Zeppelin L-2, shortly after
    starting on a flight from Johannisthal to Hamburg, met with a
    most distressing accident. An explosion occurred, the balloon
    caught fire and burst, and the gondola fell with its crew. The
    twenty-seven officers and men were killed. From Bonn the Emperor
    issued the following statement. The text, as well as that of the
    speech of June 23, 1914, is taken from the _Berliner Tageblatt_.

Again fate has laid a heavy hand upon my navy. The dirigible L-2 was
destroyed by an explosion, and nearly thirty brave men, among them many
of the ablest in developing this new species of warcraft, lost their
lives. Their death in the service of the Fatherland will be honorably
remembered by me and the entire German people. Our very deepest
sympathy goes out to their relatives. But grief over what has happened
will only spur us on to renewed efforts to develop this so important
aerial weapon into a reliable engine of war.

                                                    WILLIAM, I. R.


HAMBURG, JUNE 23, 1914

    The following speech is, we believe, the last one delivered by the
    Emperor before the murder of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand (June
    28), which precipitated the war. True to his custom, the Emperor is
    again at Hamburg at the regatta which usually marks the beginning
    of his summer holiday. This year his yacht _Meteor_ was to win
    the Hamburg prize. The banquet at which he ordinarily delivered
    his address was to be held on board the _Victoria Luise_, and the
    president of the association, Doctor Schröder, who made the address
    preceding the Emperor's, alluded to the disaster to the Z-1 and
    the destruction of that boat off Heligoland. He followed it with a
    discussion of Germany's progress in naval and aerial development.
    The Emperor answers with his usual compliments to Hamburg. His
    naval policy and his policy of expansion had profited the seaport
    towns particularly, and he was always a welcome guest. In the year
    of his jubilee, 1913, the Hamburg-American Line had done him the
    honor to name one of their boats the _Imperator_, and this year
    they had launched the great thirty-thousand-ton _Bismarck_. If
    his speech on this occasion shows nothing particularly new, one
    thing at least is interesting from the change which he introduces
    in Bismarck's famous statement. The Emperor himself has quoted it
    previously (April 24, 1901): "We Germans fear God, nothing else in
    the world." Here it seems to have in it a little more of defiance
    and possibly of challenge: "We Germans fear God and absolutely
    nobody and nothing else in the world."

May your Magnificence allow me to express my thanks for your friendly
words and for the picture of the past progress of important phases of
our national development! I would like to include in my expression of
thanks a heartfelt appreciation of the delightful reception which this
year, as in other years, was accorded me by the population of the city
of Hamburg. It was noticeable in the oldest citizen and in the youngest
child. I have been able to see how the hearty and close relationship
between Hamburg citizens and myself has gradually become traditional,
for it passes on from generation to generation. Your Magnificence,
has spoken of the sources which provide us with the material for the
Fatherland's activity on the seas and has cited some brilliant examples
in this line. Although I, too, have noted with pleasure how sport has
developed greatly, I would, nevertheless, like to call attention to the
fact that in one respect I believe our nation is following the right
path. We are right in attempting to bring the mass to a higher level
of development rather than to scoop out isolated great performances
from a generally lowered average. The water sports which we foster and
which have again brought us together here, have also seen a new yacht
appear under my flag, and it has been successful in winning the Hamburg
state prize, for which honor I am joyously grateful. The yacht is the
creation of a German Hanseatic shipbuilder and was built by experienced
hands at the well-known wharves of Mr. Krupp, on the water-front.
This, too, is an indication of the development of our technical skill,
which was possible only in the long period of peace which was granted
us after the stirring years of military prowess. It is a symbol of
peace which the merchant, the banker, the ship-owner needs in order
to develop, and which they have used each in his own calling to
such magnificent effect. I am sure I represent the feelings of all
those assembled here on this beautiful and well-known ship of the
Hamburg-American Line when I thank that line particularly for the great
day they recently prepared for us. As another symbol of the long period
of peace, a few days ago the _Bismarck_ left its stocks. It is the
greatest vessel now afloat. We all of us know very well that this was
no ordinary launching, both because of the size of the ship and because
of the impression and attitude of the spectators. The Hamburg-American
Line, through the building of this vessel, gave us the occasion for
a great national festival at the moment when the thirty thousand
tons glided down into the water. It was as if all the dross had been
taken out of the lives of those of us who were present, and even from
the lives of all other Germans, as we may judge from the expressions
which come to us from all parts of the country. Envy, pettiness, daily
conflicts disappeared. All hearts beat higher and remembered the great
time and the great men who wrought in it and thought of the Great
Emperor and of his Iron Chancellor. It is for us to administer further
the legacy that has come down to us. Just as in our individual efforts
and in our sports we summon up and exert all our powers to reach our
goal, so too we must do the same for our Fatherland. We must be in
a position to take to heart and to exemplify practically one of the
finest utterances coined by the Iron Chancellor. We must so live and
act that we shall at all times say with him: "We Germans fear God and
absolutely nobody and nothing else in the world." With this feeling I
raise my glass and ask you to drink with me to the city of Hamburg, the
Regatta Association, and the Hamburg-American Line--Hurrah! Hurrah!



As there is no official edition of the Emperor's recent addresses, the
following five speeches and decrees are taken from the _Frankfurter


BERLIN, JULY 31, 1914

    On the 31st of July the Emperor made the following address from the
    balcony of the Royal Palace in Berlin:

A grievous situation has come upon Germany. Envious nations on all
sides are forcing us to justified defense. They are forcing the sword
into my hand. If my attempts are not successful in bringing our
opponents to their senses and in keeping peace at the eleventh hour,
I hope that with God's help we may so use the sword that we may be
able to sheathe it again with honor. Enormous sacrifices in life and
property would be demanded from the German people by a war; but we
would show the enemy what it means to attack Germany. And now I bid
you go to the church, bow down before God and ask His help for our
brave army.



    After the order of mobilization, the Emperor made the following
    brief speech from the window of the Royal Palace:

If we must have war, all parties cease. We are only German brothers. In
times of peace this or that party has attacked me; I forgive them now
with all my heart. If our neighbors are not satisfied to leave us in
peace, then we hope and pray that our good German sword will come out
of the struggle victorious.



    The Emperor opened the special session of the Reichstag with the
    following address:


At a time big with consequences I have assembled the elected
representatives of the German people about me. For nearly half a
century we have been allowed to follow the ways of peace. The attempts
to attribute to Germany warlike intentions and to hedge in her
position in the world have often sorely tried the patience of my
people. Undeterred, my government has pursued the development of our
moral, spiritual, and economic strength as its highest aim, with all
frankness, even under provocative circumstances! The world has been
witness that during the last years, under all pressure and confusion,
we have stood in the first rank in saving the nations of Europe from
a war between the great powers. The most serious dangers to which the
events in the Balkans had given rise seemed to have been overcome--then
suddenly an abyss was opened through the murder of my friend the
Archduke Franz Ferdinand. My lofty ally, the Emperor and King Franz
Joseph, was forced to take up arms to defend the security of his empire
against dangerous machinations from a neighboring state. The Russian
empire stepped in the way of the allied monarchy following out her
just interests. Not only our duty as ally calls us to the side of
Austria-Hungary, but it is our great task to protect our own position
and the old community of culture between the two empires against the
attack of hostile forces. With a heavy heart I have had to mobilize
the army against a neighbor with whom it had fought side by side on
many a battle-field. With unfeigned sorrow I saw broken a friendship
which had been faithfully preserved by Germany. The imperial Russian
Government, yielding to the pressure of an insatiable nationalism,
has taken sides for a state which through its sanctioning of criminal
attacks has brought about the evils of this war. That France, too,
should have taken sides with our enemy could not surprise us; too often
have our attempts to come to friendlier relationships with the French
Republic failed because of her old hopes and old resentments.

Honored Gentlemen, what human insight and power could do to equip a
people for these uttermost decisions has been done with your patriotic
assistance. The hostility which has been making itself felt in the
east and in the west for a long time past has now broken out in bright
flame. The present situation is not the result of passing conflicts of
interests or of diplomatic conjunctions; it is the result of an ill
will which has been active for many years against the power and the
prosperity of the German Empire.

No lust of conquest drives us on; we are inspired by the unalterable
will to protect the place in which God has set us for ourselves and all
coming generations. From the documents which have been submitted to
you, you will see how my government and especially my Chancellor have
endeavored even to the last moment to stave off the inevitable. In a
defensive war that has been forced upon us, with a clear conscience
and a clean hand we take up the sword. I issue my call to the peoples
and stocks of the German Empire, that with their united strength they
may stand like brothers with our allies in order to defend what we
have created through the works of peace. Following the example of
our fathers, staunch and true, earnest and knightly, humble before
God, but with the joy of battle in the face of the enemy, we trust in
the Almighty to strengthen our defense and guide us to good issue.
Honored Gentlemen, the German people gathered about their princes and
leaders are to-day looking to you. Come to your decisions quickly and
unanimously. Such is my most earnest wish.



    On this date the following statement was issued to the army and

After forty-three years of peace, I call all the available forces to
arms. We must defend our most sacred possessions, the Fatherland, and
our own hearths, against ruthless attack. Enemies round about us! That
is the characteristic of the situation. We must expect a great conflict
and to make great sacrifices. I have confidence that the old warlike
spirit still lives in the German people, that powerful warlike spirit
which attacks the enemy wherever found and at whatever cost and which
has always been the fear and terror of our enemies. I have confidence
in you, you German soldiers. In every one of you there lives the eager,
unconquerable will to triumph. Every one of you knows how to die like
a hero if need be. Think of our great and glorious past. Remember that
you are Germans. God help us.

                                        (Signed) WILLIAM, I. R.

  BERLIN, August 6, 1914.



    The following proclamation was issued on the evening of this date:


Since the founding of the empire, for forty-three years it has been the
earnest aim of my ancestors and myself to maintain peace with the world
and to further our powerful advance in peace. But our opponents envy
us the fruit of our labors. In the consciousness of our responsibility
and our strength, we must endure overt and covert hostility from east
and west and from across the sea. But now they wish to humble us. They
demand that with folded arms we should watch our enemies prepare
themselves for an underhand attack. They do not wish to allow us in
loyal determination to stand by our ally, who is fighting for his
position as a great power and with whose humiliation our own power and
honor will also be lost. So the sword must decide! The enemy surprises
us while we are entirely at peace. Therefore, to arms! Any wavering,
any hesitation would be treachery to the Fatherland. We must fight for
the existence or non-existence of our empire, which our fathers lately
founded for themselves; for the existence or non-existence of German
power and German life. We shall fight to the last breath of man and
horse, and we shall continue this conflict against a world of enemies.
Germany has never yet been conquered as long as she was united. Go
forward with God, who will be with us as He was with our fathers.

                                          (Signed) WILLIAM, I. R.

  BERLIN, August 6, 1914.

Transcriber's Note

Obvious printer errors have been fixed.

Variations in spelling have been retained except in clear cases of
typographical error (see list below).

  Page xiv - Tangiers changed to Tangier

  Page 167 - unforgetable changed to unforgettably

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