Handbook of German History

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The Handbook of German History is also called "der Gebhardt " after its founding editor Bruno Gebhardt . Started in 1891, the 10th, completely new edition has been published since 2001. The demanding manual is understandable, with restrictions, also for historical laypeople; Last but not least, it is aimed at students of history for an initial professional orientation.


Bruno Gebhardt (1858–1905) was a German-Jewish secondary school teacher of Wielkopolska origin who worked in Berlin. He wanted to give his colleagues a practical handbook on the most important dates and developments in German history. With a German history that was as "complete as possible and that corresponded to the current state of science [...] he wanted to gain the participation of the educated rather than the specialist [...] and contribute to the knowledge of German history." from which patriotic sentiments and political maturity grow. ”The two-volume manual was first published in 1891/92 as a collaboration between eleven grammar school teachers, librarians and archivists.

The 2nd edition is from 1901, published by Ferdinand Hirsch (1843–1915), Aloys Meister (1866–1925) and Robert Holtzmann (1873–1946), who at that time began to involve more and more university teachers. The 3rd edition is from 1906, the 4th from 1910 and the 5th from 1913.

From the 6th edition (1922/23 in three volumes) under Aloys Meister, the contributions were written by university professors, and the previously more political history was enriched by social history. The 7th edition from 1930 under Robert Holtzmann again consisted of two volumes.

The 8th and 9th edition: the Gebhardt under Herbert Grundmann 1954–1970

The medievalist Herbert Grundmann completely restructured the work. The 8th edition came out 1954-1960 in four volumes by the Stuttgart Union-Verlag .

The 9th edition was continued until the events of 1949/50. It was published in four volumes between 1970 and 1976 by Union Verlag and Klett Verlag. The fourth volume was divided into two parts. The editor was again Herbert Grundmann. Between 1973 and 1980 a 22-volume paperback edition of this edition was published by dtv. Reprints of the 9th edition appeared until 1999.

The 9th edition still has a certain justification as a compendium of the history of events, the 10th edition takes a different approach.

Single volumes of the 8th edition

The 8th edition consisted of four volumes:

  • Volume 1: Herbert Grundmann, Friedrich Baethgen (Ed.): Early and Middle Ages , 1954.
  • Volume 2: Herbert Grundmann, Max Braubach (Ed.): From the Reformation to the End of Absolutism , 1955.
  • Volume 3: Herbert Grundmann, Karl Erich Born (eds.): From the French Revolution to the First World War , 1960.
  • Volume 4: Karl Dietrich Erdmann (Ed.): The Age of World Wars , 1959.

Individual volumes of the 9th edition

The 9th edition (1970–1973) divided the fourth volume into:

  • Volume 1: The First World War, the Weimar Republic , 1973.
  • Volume 2: Germany under the rule of National Socialism 1933–1939. The second World War. The end of the empire and the emergence of the Republic of Austria, the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic , 1973.

A paperback edition of this edition was published by dtv:

  • Volume 1: Ernst Wahle : Prehistory and Early History in Central Europe , 9th edition 1999.
  • Volume 2: Heinz Löwe : Germany in the Franconian Empire , 11th edition 1999.
  • Volume 3: Josef Fleckenstein , Marie Luise Bulst-Thiele : Founding and Rise of the German Empire , 10th edition 1999.
  • Volume 4: Karl Jordan : Investiture Controversy and the Early Staufer Period 1056–1197 , 10th edition 1999.
  • Volume 5: Herbert Grundmann: Wahlkönigtum, Territorialpolitik and Ostbewegung in the 13th and 14th centuries: 1198–1378 , 10th edition 1999.
  • Volume 6: Friedrich Baethgen: Schism and Council Time, Reich Reform and Habsburg Rise , 8th edition 1999.
  • Volume 7: Karl Bosl : State, Society, Economy in the German Middle Ages , 10th edition 1999.
  • Volume 8: Walther Peter Fuchs : The Age of the Reformation , 10th edition 1999.
  • Volume 9: Ernst Walter Zeeden : The Age of Faith Struggles: 1555–1648 , 9th edition 1999.
  • Volume 10: Max Braubach: From the Peace of Westphalia to the French Revolution , 9th edition 1999.
  • Volume 11: Gerhard Oestreich : Constitutional History from the End of the Middle Ages to the End of the Old Empire , 8th edition 1999.
  • Volume 12: Wilhelm Treue : Economy, Society and Technology in Germany from the 16th to the 18th Century , 7th edition 1999.
  • Volume 13: Walter Schlesinger , Friedrich Uhlhorn : The German Territories , 7th edition 1999.
  • Volume 14: Max Braubach: From the French Revolution to the Congress of Vienna , 11th edition 1999.
  • Volume 15: Theodor Schieder : From the German Confederation to the German Empire: 1815–1871 , 16th edition 1999.
  • Volume 16: Karl Erich Born: From the founding of the Reich to the First World War , 16th edition 1999.
  • Volume 17: Wilhelm Treue : Society, Economy and Technology in Germany in the 19th Century , 11th Edition 1999.
  • Volume 18: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: The First World War , 11th edition 1999.
  • Volume 19: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: The Weimar Republic , 13th edition 1999.
  • Volume 20: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: Germany under the rule of National Socialism. 1933-1939 , 11th edition 1999.
  • Volume 21: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: The Second World War , 9th edition 1999.
  • Volume 22: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: The end of the Reich and the emergence of the Republic of Austria, the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic , 9th edition 1999.

The 10th edition since 2001

The 10th edition is published by Klett-Cotta Verlag and is yet another new concept, with different authors than the 8th / 9th. Edition. The editors are four professors: the medievalist Alfred Haverkamp , the early modernist Wolfgang Reinhard , the social historian Jürgen Kocka and the contemporary historian Wolfgang Benz . A distinction is made between four epochs:

  • Volumes 1 to 8: Late Antiquity to the End of the Middle Ages (editor Alfred Haverkamp)
  • Volumes 9 to 12: Early Modern Times to the End of the Old Empire 1495–1806 (Editor Wolfgang Reinhard)
  • Volumes 13 to 17: 19th century 1806–1918 (editor Jürgen Kocka)
  • Volumes 18 to 23: 20th Century 1918–2000 (Editor Wolfgang Benz)

Together with a general final volume, which also contains the complete register, there will be 24 volumes (as of March 21, 2007). The preface says that the handbook should present German history in its regional diversity and in the European context and integrate the sub-disciplines. The state of German historical research should be shown to a broad audience. The editors also say in their foreword:

“Unlike earlier editions, the new Gebhardt integrates political, social, cultural and economic history with equal weight instead of placing the history of politics in the center of attention. The new Gebhardt differs more clearly than previous editions from a mere chronicle of German history. He is committed to analytical approaches, explicitly asks questions, and makes offers for further interpretation. He gathers the secured knowledge and reports on valid interpretations. But it also denotes gaps in the state of research, identifies what is questionable, confronts controversies and points out open problems. "

part 1

Alfred Haverkamp: Perspectives of the Middle Ages ; Friedrich Prinz : European Foundations of German History, 4. – 8. Century . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2004, 672 pages, ISBN 3-608-60001-9 .

Harm von Seggern reviews the first volume of the new “Gebhardt” for the quarterly journal for social and economic history . He states that the science of history has "changed profoundly" since the publication of the 9th edition, "the primacy of the history of state, politics and events" has given way to "an understanding of a multidisciplinary history in which developments in many fields of society have been made The present volume, which consists of two parts, is committed to this concept. While Haverkamp discusses the “general periodization of the Middle Ages” in the first part, problematizes central terms and finally gives a “necessarily short source-history plan”, Friedrich Prinz provides an “overall presentation” of the European foundations of German history between the 4th and 8th centuries. The reviewer praised the “extremely reader-friendly” format of the volume and judged: “Both Haverkamp's introduction and Prinz's overall presentation are impressive because of their formal and content-related balance”.

Volume 2

Rudolf Schieffer : The time of the Carolingian empire, 714-887 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2005, 239 pages, ISBN 3-608-60002-7 .

In the Süddeutsche Zeitung , Christian Jostmann writes about the book: “The student who wants to prepare for an exam, the doctoral student who has to repeat the material of the course, as well as the historically interested layperson receive a clearly legible manual that is concise but reliable introduces the history not only of the Eastern Carolingian Empire. "

Volume 3

Hagen Keller , Gerd Althoff : The time of the late Carolingians and the Ottonians. Crises and Consolidations 888–1024 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2008, 475 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60003-2 .

The reviewer Wolfgang Huschner refers in the historical journal to a reinterpretation of the history of the Ottonian empire, which has taken place in the "last two decades". This “new interpretation” was significantly influenced by the two authors of the present volume. As a result, it was possible to finally overcome the "national state-determined view of the 19th and 20th centuries", according to which at the beginning of German history there was a glamorous Ottonian Empire. In contrast, the presentation by Keller and Althoff makes it clear that the rulers of the 10th century did not see themselves as kings or even emperors "of the Germans", but strived for the "Roman imperial dignity".

Volume 4

Hanna Vollrath : The realm of the Salians - living worlds and creative forces 1024–1125 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2020, approx. 400 pages (in preparation).

Volume 5

Alfred Haverkamp: Twelfth Century 1125–1198 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2003, 319 pages, ISBN 3-608-60005-1 .

According to Tobias Weller ( H-Soz-u-Kult ), Haverkamp attaches great importance to structural history in the performing part; only nine of twenty chapters are devoted to political history in the narrower sense, in contrast to the 9th edition, which is more event-related. Haverkamp, ​​a competent expert on the subject, incorporated the latest literature. His presentation is of necessity highly concentrated and is therefore aimed more at readers with prior knowledge than at those who are looking for an initial orientation. The reviewer praises the careful editing.

Volume 6

Wolfgang Stürner : Thirteenth Century 1198–1273 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2007, 446 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60006-3 .

The reviewer Martin Kaufhold praised the volume in a review for the German Archive for Research into the Middle Ages . The author Wolfgang Stürner moves “on safe ground. As a well-known expert on the history of Frederick II, he is very familiar with a large part of the material. His knowledge and his always balanced judgment give the volume a well-founded character. "Stürner presented a" differentiated and plausible picture of the conditions he describes. "The reviewer critically mentions the lack of consideration of the rural population.

Volume 7a

Michael Menzel : The time of drafts (1273-1347) . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2012, 332 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60007-0 .

Thomas Jeschke emphasizes in the journal for historical research “that we are dealing with a successful handbook of German history from 1273 to 1347.” Menzel presented “a clearly conceived, easily readable and knowledgeable book ... with the title 'Handbuch 'completely fair'. He manages to "make the important connections understandable even for the layperson." Compared to the older editions of "Gebhardt", the reviewer registered a "paradigm shift". The classic history of politics and events, which still dominated in the 9th edition, only takes up about a third of the space in this volume. "The rest is dedicated to the socio-cultural context in a broad sense."

Volume 7b

Christian Hesse : Synthesis and Awakening (1346–1410) . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2017, 348 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60072-8 .

In the journal for historical research, the Swiss historian Gabriela Signori praises the author's remarkable “care”: “Each section has been thoroughly researched; The latest research results are expertly summarized on a few pages, and this in a pleasantly readable style. ”She finds the“ dominance of the history of politics and events ”and the“ narrowing ”on German history as problematic:“ A comparison with England, France and Italy would have made it clear that society was in a tremendous process of transformation that ... is reflected in the countless fights for participation that can be observed across Europe. "

"History is closely following the publication of the volumes of the 10th, completely revised edition of the 'Gebhardt - Handbuch der deutschen Geschichte'", writes Sabine von Heusinger in her review for the historical magazine . From their point of view, Christian Hesse has presented “a convincing volume”: “Topics of recent research such as written form, cooperatives or Jews have found their way into the volume as well as research on civil unrest as examples of conflict resolution.” The focus of the volume is clearly on the political history, while the areas of economy, society, culture and church are given less space. In the end, the reviewer wishes the "volume many readers".

Volume 8

Hartmut Boockmann , Heinrich Dormeier : Councils, church and imperial reform 1410–1495 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2005, 319 pages, ISBN 3-608-60008-6 .

Martina Hartmann refers to the work of Dormeiers, who had to update and correct an older manuscript by Boockmann, who died in 1998. The result is an "easily readable, sometimes exciting and well-structured presentation". Because of its abundance of further literature, the volume is of interest to specialists, but does not lose sight of the students either. For example, it explains why the invention of paper rather than the printing press was more important at first. Boockmann depicts the situation of the late medieval clergy with great empathy and clears up old prejudices.

Detlev Mares writes that Boockmann draws “the picture of prudent rulers” (like Friedrich III.) Who acted skillfully and not without success, and that the late medieval crisis cannot simply be spoken of in economic history. “Continuity instead of a crisis-ridden end of the Middle Ages”, Boockmann stated, also with the thoroughly examined cultural developments. It seemed ironic that Boockmann's “masterfully precisely formulated section” ended the Middle Ages in the new Gebhardt, because Boockmann undercut the epoch scabbard around 1500.

Volume 9

Wolfgang Reinhard : Problems of German History 1495–1806; Imperial reform and Reformation 1495–1555 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2001, 435 pages, ISBN 3-608-60009-4 .

Bernd Roeck in Die Zeit thinks that Gebhardt only delivers “historical home-style cooking” and falls far short of the self-imposed claims. In his opinion, volumes 9 and 10 (1495–1648) lack topics such as cultural transfers, mentalities or “the social memory of Germans”, and women are also neglected. “The reader can expect a 16th century without the art of Arcimboldo and the other Mannerists with their cryptic messages, a Thirty Years War without Gryphius, even without Grimmelshausen”.

Volume 10

Maximilian Lanzinner : Confessional Age 1555–1618 ; Gerhard Schormann : Thirty Years War 1618–1648 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2001, 370 pages, ISBN 3-608-60010-8 .

In the online review journal Sehepunkte , the Frenchman Christophe Duhamelle is impressed by Gebhardt, “this unique monument of German historical research”, and he praises the “tight density” and the precision. What is striking about Lanzinner's portrayal is the reassessment of the Old Kingdom and its institutions. In general, Duhamelle thinks it is good that the early modern era, neglected in the previous Gebhardt, is given more space, which is also reflected in the development of the chairs since then. The reviewer is more critical of what he believes is “massive emphasis on denominational and political issues”, which he attributes to Lanzinner's argument with Leopold von Ranke: “Anyone who wrestles with Ranke is on the same battlefield.” But he confesses to Lanzinner admitted that one cannot encompass everything in a concise synthesis. But she discussed a lot, "and in a very pleasant and clear way".

Helga Schnabel-Schüle (PERFORM on Sehepunkte ) does not believe that the band with its many unexplained technical terms (especially in the first part) is really accessible to a wide audience. Other readers would also find it difficult to understand terms such as “ Flacian -minded imperial estates ”, “ East Elbian castle streets” or “ Piast dukes of Silesia ”. She also criticizes the fact that on the one hand the “Sources and Literature”, with over fifty pages, takes up too much space with a total of 280 pages of text, but on the other hand the selection of literature is sometimes incomprehensible. The points of criticism are not to be blamed on the authors, but on the design of the manual. In the presentation of the state of research on the early modern period, the series “ Oldenbourg Floor Plan of History ” and “ Encyclopedia of German History ” are superior, in terms of general comprehensibility above all the series “The Reich and the Germans” from the Siedler Verlag.

Heinz Duchhardt (PERFORM on Sehepunkte ) also finds that at least Schormann's contribution lacks a number of titles in literature, and Schormann does not, for example, go into the Russian-Polish-Swedish components of the Thirty Years' War. Duchhardt liked the way in which research is discussed in its tendencies and deficits in the volume, here too Lanzinner offers more than Schormann. The reviewer would like a little more cultural and art history, a little more illumination of marginalized groups and a “more knowledge-guiding red thread”. The value of the volume lies in the reliability of the facts and the processing of the state of research.

Volume 11

Johannes Burkhardt : Completion and reorientation of the early modern empire 1648–1763 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2006, 563 pages, ISBN 3-608-60011-6 .

For the reviewer Alexander Schunka , the "Gebhardt" is the "mother of all manuals". Volume 11 offers "a history of the empire primarily as a representation of its institutions, the course of events and institutional communication, each enriched with research opinions," writes Schunka in H-Soz-Kult . Burkhardt's book is “first and foremost a brilliantly written historical narrative.” Even if “some passages are not always completely free of misunderstandings”, the author succeeds “in giving his readers even the most wooden constructions of the empire such as district associations or the renovation of the Kurkolleg as exciting phenomena and to captivate the reader with battles, but also with apparently confusing things like the Bavarian alliance policy around 1700. "

Volume 12

Walter Demel : Reich, reforms and social change 1763–1806 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2005, 448 pages, ISBN 3-608-60012-4 .

The "Gebhardt" is "one of the flagships of German history," writes Matthias Schnettger in the historical journal . Demel's contribution reflects “the shift in emphasis in historical research away from political and towards social and cultural history”. In his volume, Demel has “thoroughly evaluated a wealth of special investigations” and presented “a text that is both dense and very legible”, the reviewer says.

Volume 13

Jürgen Kocka : The long 19th century . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2002, 187 pages, ISBN 3-608-60013-2 .

Nils Freytag ( Sehepunkte ) considers Kocka to be the best connoisseur of the epoch, who has always been able to confidently and confidently present “the fundamental driving forces of the century” in the core sections of the volume, “without getting entangled in detailed problems”. But he thinks that Kocka tailored his remarks too much to Prussia-Germany. The strengths of the volume lie in the social and economic history passages, the reader should not expect more detailed cultural and political history explanations. However, since previous knowledge is required, other works are initially recommended to new students.

Volume 14

Helmut Berding , Hans-Werner Hahn : Reforms, Restoration and Revolution 1806 to 1848/49 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2010, 712 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60014-8 .

Andreas Fahrmeir praises the book in the historical magazine for its "reliability and encyclopedic breadth". The volume succeeds in "combining the transfer of established knowledge and setting new accents" in an "ideal way". In conclusion, the reviewer wrote: "One can only hope that current and future generations of students will overcome their fears of longer books and that their knowledge of Germany in the early 19th century will also, if not primarily, be drawn from this 'Gebhardt'."

Volume 15

Friedrich Lenger : Industrial Revolution and National State Foundation 1849–1870 / 71 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2003, 451 pages, ISBN 3-608-60015-9 .

Christian Jansen ( Sehepunkte ) believes that the editors Haverkamp, ​​Reinhard, Kocka and Benz stand for a “methodologically reflective, theoretically informed social history that has left behind the conservative-nationalist orientation” of an older German historical scholarship. Accordingly, their claim to integrate social, cultural and economic history is high. That was successful in the present volume, the history of politics only begins on page 257. Lenger's strengths lie in the area of ​​economic history, where he is “easy to understand and innovative at the same time”. On the other hand, the remaining parts fell off. The reviewer calls the structure there conventional and uninspiring, and in some cases the older national liberal interpretation that excuses Bismarck has been adopted. On the other hand, the chapter on education, science and culture was successful, but the ethnic minorities were neglected. The easy-to-read overview is particularly recommended for students, despite some overly special formulations. Finally, he complains of a “typically German ban on images (no cards, no caricatures, no art)”.

Volume 16

Volker Berghahn : The Empire 1871–1914 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2006, 486 pages, ISBN 3-608-60016-7 .

Frank Becker ( Sehepunkte ) sees the newly designed volume more as a reader than a reference work. Despite all the compactness and factual saturation, the presentation should be formulated pleasantly. The author, who teaches in New York, clearly benefits from the Anglo-Saxon school. The integration of political history and social history is innovative in the structure of the volume. Politics is even taking second place. The wide range of topics is also promising. The image that Berghahn draws of the empire is, however, still that of an authoritarian state with little differentiation, with the Reichstag as a pseudo-democratic fig leaf. One had “unfortunately the impression that the editor and author could not resist the temptation to use the new edition of 'Gebhardt' after the long struggles of their youth against the prevailing political-historical paradigm, to use the approaches and positions of critical social history with the same stubbornness to canonize the seventies. "

Volume 17

Wolfgang Mommsen : The great catastrophe in Germany. The First World War 1914–1918 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2002, 188 pages, ISBN 3-608-60017-5 .

Wilfried Rudloff in the online review journal Sehepunkte suspects a greater competitive situation for the 10th edition of the Gebhardt than for its predecessors, since there are more different overall representations than before and "the demands on an integrative performance" have increased. On the volume on the First World War by Wolfgang Mommsen, Rudloff praises how Mommsen confidently pulls the strings of research together on just 150 pages. In addition to other causes that would have made the war inevitable, Mommsen still mentions the controversial social-imperialism thesis: the elites sought refuge in war in order to avoid domestic political and social reforms.

In H-Soz-u-Kult , Jost Dülffer first points out that the imperialism researcher Wolfgang J. Mommsen was one of the rediscoverers of the First World War as a topic in recent history. The Gebhardt volume gives a good overview, includes pre- and post-history as well as the international situation, but also takes the military and war technology seriously. In a key chapter, Mommsen included German society; the broader statements about the cultural elites, including the two large churches, were new. "Overall, the presentation breathes the spirit of the juste milieus of the German historical scholarship of this generation of historians", but controversies have "largely given way to a balancing view that largely overcomes old trench warfare [...]". In addition to the clear and straightforward diction, Dülffer also praises Mommsen's "ability to learn [!] And the ability to integrate". Incidentally, Dülffer finds the price of the tape too high for students.

Volume 18

Wolfgang Benz , Ursula Büttner : The departure into the modern age - the 20th century. Weimar - the overwhelmed republic 1918–1933 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2010, 812 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60018-6 .

Volume 18 opens the last part of "Gebhardt" (Volume 18-23), which deals with the 20th century since the end of the First World War. The volume consists of two texts: Wolfgang Benz initially provides an overview of German history in the “Century of Ideologies” on 133 pages under the title “The Departure into Modernity”. Ursula Büttner's account of the Weimar Republic forms the main part of the book on 470 pages. The judgment of the reviewer Andreas Rödder in the historical journal is inconsistent. While he is critical of the introduction of Benz because of its “thematic, moralizing and national narrowing”, he praises Büttner's treatise on Weimar as “a systematic, reflective, prudent and balanced presentation”.

Volume 19

Michael Grüttner : The Third Reich 1933–1939 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2014, 606 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60019-3 .

Bernward Dörner writes in the Zeitschrift für Geschichtswwissenschaft that Grüttner's book offers an "excellent overview of the most diverse fields of Nazi society." Grüttner explains "plausibly" how the Nazi regime was able to achieve a "high level of acceptance among the population", but at the same time distances himself from more far-reaching positions that characterize the regime as a "dictatorship of consent with a majority" ( Götz Aly ). Dörner also finds Grüttner's thesis “convincing” that the Holocaust “not as a plan, but as an option” was already present in Hitler's thinking during the pre-war period. On the other hand, the section on the Reichstag fire is “less well balanced” . Dörner is critical of Grüttner's statement that the Hitler Youth “forcibly” recruited its members from a certain point in time. Finally, it says: “The excellent synthesis will help researchers, students, teachers and the historically interested public as they come to terms with the Nazi era. You can't expect more from a manual. "

Joachim Scholtyseck praises the presentation of the "peace years" of the Nazi regime by Grüttner in the historical magazine as "all around" convincing. Scholtyseck emphasizes that “the individual chapters also offer new insights again and again for those who believe they are well acquainted with the history of the years 1933 to 1939, be it on foreign policy, on the economy, on religion and church politics, or on gender relations . "The book is an" excellent "compendium," which confidently leads through the almost unmistakable literature to the years after Hitler came to power. Gebhardt's high standard of summarizing and reflecting on the state of German historical research and writing is being fulfilled in an exemplary manner. "

Volume 20

Dieter Pohl : The Holocaust 1933-1945. National Socialist Racial Policy , in preparation.

Volume 21

Rolf-Dieter Müller : The Second World War 1939-1945 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2004, 503 pages, ISBN 3-608-60021-3 .

Dieter Pohl ( Sehepunkte ) considers the expert Müller predestined for the challenge of “integrating the global implications of the war into a manual for German history” and at the same time leaving the rule structure of the Nazi state and the murder of the Jews to other volumes. Müller reinterprets the greatest battle of the war, the conflict at Kursk; The 1944 landing in Normandy, not Moscow or Stalingrad, is at the center of the German defeat. Müller finally let the war phase 1943–1945 come into its own. The history of war society takes up enough space, but remains pale. However, Pohl clearly criticizes some statements such as the one that the Soviet rule of eastern Poland from 1939 onwards was more brutal from the start than the German rule in western Poland. The number of Polish victims in the Warsaw uprising was too low, and that of victims of French revenge after the liberation was too high. "Müller's attempt to make corrections to the now dominant narrative of war history was therefore not entirely successful." (See also Soviet war crimes in World War II , Allied war crimes in World War II #France ).

Volume 22

Wolfgang Benz, Michael F. Scholz : Germany under Allied occupation 1945-1949. The GDR 1949–1990 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2009, 686 pages, ISBN 978-3-608-60022-3 .

Dierk Hoffmann ( Sehepunkte ) assesses the two texts published in this volume differently. Wolfgang Benz's contribution about the post-war years under Allied occupation is mainly based on older publications by the author and offers "little new". In contrast, Michael F. Scholz presented “an overall convincing account of the history of the GDR. It offers a differentiated picture of the East German state and has largely taken into account the research literature. "

Volume 23

Edgar Wolfrum : The Federal Republic of Germany 1949–1990 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2005, 696 pages, ISBN 3-608-60023-X .

Konrad H. Jarausch ( H-Soz-u-Kult ) sees Gebhardt as a “master narrative in a plural landscape of interpretation”. On volume 23, he criticized the editors' decision not to have the volume begin until 1949 (because of volume 22). In addition, GDR history was better integrated into this volume than looking at the division of Germany. The GDR history is unfortunately largely hidden. Jarausch's strengths include the wide range of topics (including the “third industrial revolution” and pop music) and the “clear, fluent presentation”. From the point of view of the manual character, however, the reviewer criticizes some pleasing, exaggerated formulations: The RAF allegedly had no support from the population, whereas Wolfrum spoke shortly afterwards of the sympathetic scene. The claim that Jimmy Carter's human rights policy was wrong is probably due to the influence of Helmut Schmidt's memoirs. Overall, however, the volume with its informative presentation offers students a good introduction.

Volume 24

Alfred Haverkamp, ​​Wolfgang Reinhard, Jürgen Kocka, Wolfgang Benz (eds.): Germany since 1990; General register: names and places; Attachments: Maps, family tables etc. , editing: Rolf Häfele, in preparation.

Overall appreciation and criticism

The Gebhardt, both in the 9th and 10th edition, is intended for a wide audience, but requires a lot of prior knowledge for historical laypeople and sometimes uses a lot of technical terms. In addition, according to some reviews, some areas were not given sufficient attention. However, the general technical, traditional quality of Gebhardt is usually recognized. Several reviewers point to the solid external design of the 10th edition, which drives up the price and thus does not suit the target group of students. Since the number of manuals and overview presentations on German history has increased since the 9th edition was published in 1970, it will be more difficult for the 10th edition to assert itself.


Web links

Wikisource: Handbook of German History  - Sources and full texts


  1. Bruno Gebhardt (Ed.): Handbook of German History , Volume 1: From primeval times to the Reformation. Stuttgart et al. 1891, pp. III – IV.
  2. See: Karl Dietrich Erdmann: The First World War (= Gebhardt , 9th edition, Volume 18), Stuttgart 1982 (1973), p. 242; Herbert Grundmann: Foreword . In: Gebhardt. Handbook of German History , 9th edition, Volume 1, Stuttgart 1970, pp. VII – VIII.
  3. See: Herbert Grundmann: Foreword . In: Gebhardt. Handbook of German History , 9th edition, Volume 1, Stuttgart 1970, p. VIII.
  4. 1st edition 1974: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag , last (6th) edition 1986.
  5. ^ Handbook of German History / Bruno Gebhardt. Edited by Herbert Grundmann. In: AGGB catalog. Retrieved November 28, 2019 .
  6. See the bibliographical data, including those not yet published volumes, the publisher's website .
  7. See the publisher's website .
  8. Review in: Vierteljahrschrift für Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte , Volume 93 (2006), no. 2, pp. 205 f.
  9. ^ Review by Christian Jostmann in: Süddeutsche Zeitung from August 9, 2005
  10. Review in: Historische Zeitschrift , Volume 289 (2009), Issue 2, p. 439 f.
  11. Tobias Weller: Review of: Haverkamp, ​​Alfred: Zwölftes Jahrhundert. 1125-1198. Stuttgart 2003 . In: H-Soz-u-Kult , March 20, 2003, http://hsozkult.geschichte.hu-berlin.de/rezensions/2003-2-167 .
  12. ^ Martin Kaufhold: Review of Wolfgang Stürner: Thirteenth Century 1198–1273. Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 2007. In: German Archive for Research into the Middle Ages , Vol. 64 (2008), pp. 276–277, online .
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  14. Review in: Zeitschrift für Historische Forschung 45 (2018), Issue 2, pp. 336 f.
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  16. ^ Concilium medii aevi , 2006 .
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  20. Helga Schnabel-Schüle: Review of: Wolfgang Reinhard (Ed.): Gebhardt. Handbook of German History. Volume 10: Maximilian Lanzinner: Confessional Age 1555-1618. Gerhard Schormann: Thirty Years War 1618–1648, 10th, completely revised. Ed., Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2001 . In: PERFORM 3 (2002), No. 12, http://www.sehepunkte.de/2002/12/2194.html .
  21. ^ Heinz Duchhardt: Review of: Wolfgang Reinhard (Hrsg.): Gebhardt. Handbook of German History. Volume 10: Maximilian Lanzinner: Confessional Age 1555-1618. Gerhard Schormann: Thirty Years War 1618–1648, 10th, completely revised. Ed., Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2001 . In: PERFORM 3 (2002), No. 12, http://www.sehepunkte.de/2002/12/2198.html .
  22. Alexander Schunka: Review of: Burkhardt, Johannes: Completion and reorientation of the early modern empire 1648–1763. Stuttgart 2006. In: H-Soz-Kult , October 28, 2008, < https://www.hsozkult.de/publicationreview/id/rezbuecher-9039 >.
  23. Review in: Historische Zeitschrift , Volume 295 (2012), pp. 201–203.
  24. ^ Nils Freytag: Review of: Jürgen Kocka: The long 19th century. Work, Nation and Civil Society, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2002 . In: sehepunkte 4 (2004), No. 5 [15. May 2004], http://www.sehepunkte.historicum.net/2004/05/6198.html .
  25. Review in: Historische Zeitschrift , Volume 291 (2010), pp. 821–823.
  26. Christian Jansen: Review of: Friedrich Lenger: Industrial Revolution and National State Foundation. (1849–1870s), Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2003 . In: sehepunkte 4 (2004), No. 5 [15. May 2004], http://www.sehepunkte.de/2004/05/2288.html .
  27. ^ Frank Becker: Review of: Volker Berghahn: Das Kaiserreich 1871–1914. Industrial society, bourgeois culture and the authoritarian state, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2003 . In: sehepunkte 4 (2004), No. 5, [15. May 2004], http://www.sehepunkte.de/2004/05/5078.html .
  28. Wilfried Rudloff: Review of: Wolfgang J. Mommsen: Die Urkatastrophe Deutschlands. The First World War 1914–1918 , Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2002. In: sehepunkte 4 (2004), No. 7/8, [15. July 2004], http://www.sehepunkte.de/2004/07/6594.html .
  29. Jost Dülffer: Review of: Mommsen, Wolfgang J .: Die Urkatastrophe Deutschlands. The First World War 1914–1918. Stuttgart 2002 . In: H-Soz-u-Kult , August 18, 2004, http://hsozkult.geschichte.hu-berlin.de/rezensions/2004-3-105 .
  30. Review in: Historische Zeitschrift , Volume 295 (2012), Issue 1, pp. 239–242.
  31. Bernward Dörner: Review of: Michael Grüttner: The Third Reich 1933–1939, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2014 . In: Zeitschrift für Geschichtswwissenschaft 2015, pp. 907–909.
  32. Joachim Scholtyseck in: Historische Zeitschrift , Volume 303 (2016), pp. 911–913.
  33. Dieter Pohl: Review of: Rolf-Dieter Müller: The Last German War 1939-1945, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2005 . In: sehepunkte 5 (2005), No. 4 [15. April 2005], http://www.sehepunkte.de/2005/04/8302.html .
  34. ^ Dierk Hoffmann: Review of: Wolfgang Benz / Michael F. Scholz: Gebhardt. Handbook of German History. Volume 22: Germany under Allied occupation 1945–1949, The GDR 1949–1990, Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta 2009 . In: sehepunkte 10 (2010), No. 10 [15. October 2010], http://www.sehepunkte.de/2010/10/16996.html .
  35. Konrad H. Jarausch: Review of: Wolfrum, Edgar: Die geslückte Demokratie. History of the Federal Republic of Germany from its beginnings to the present. Stuttgart 2006 . In: H-Soz-u-Kult , June 1, 2006, http://hsozkult.geschichte.hu-berlin.de/rezensions/2006-2-152 .