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The Origins of the First World War: Diplomatic and Military Documents (Documents in Modern History) Paperback – 20 Jun 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press; annotated edition edition (20 Jun. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0719074215
  • ISBN-13: 978-0719074219
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 3.6 x 13.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 327,648 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

At last a documentary collection with newly discovered documents on the origins of the First World War. A fine choice of key documents vital to understanding the many remaining controversies on the war's origins. -- Professor John Keiger. Annika Mombauer has provided historians with a veritable feast of new diplomatic and military documents on the origins of the Great War. While some hardy staples from past collections remain, she has combed private archives, explored government collections, and included military as well as diplomatic documents to produce a volume that will surprise even the most diligent researcher who has worked on this topic. Her succinct narrative links the documents together without forcing the reader to any interpretation of the complex issues that surround an explanation of why war in the summer of 1914. Crisply edited, with a useful introduction to the interwar document wars, this volume will help teachers, researchers, and political scientists as they seek to understand the slide to war a century ago. -- Professor Samuel R. Williamson, Jr.. Annika Mombauer's document collection will be essential reading for students of the origins of the First World War. Mombauer has trawled the archives for new and unfamiliar texts that shed fresh light on the events that brought war to Europe in 1914. The book reconstructs a sequence of key episodes, offering a three-dimensional view of the European pre-war crisis and allowing readers to compare a range of national perspectives. With its eloquent introduction and commentaries, this judicious, elegantly translated and lucidly structured collection is an important new reference work. --Professor Christopher Clark.

About the Author

Annika Mombauer is a Senior Lecturer in Modern European History at the Open University

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By DB Kaufman on 14 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr Mombauer has written an excellent sourcebook on the origins of the First World War. Comprehensive, superbly edited and annotated, this is perfect for students as well as teachers looking to gain a fully rounded picture of why Europe went to war in 1914. As a university lecturer, this has enabled me to effectively teach a course on the war's origins through the voices of those who made the decisions, allowing students to read a variety of evidence in order to come to their own conclusions. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By David on 5 Oct. 2013
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This is an essential collection of Primary Source material, particularly for anyone about to undertake the Open University module A327: War, Peace, Modernity, but equally, will be of great interest to anyone wishing to understand more about the attitudes and decisions that were being made by diplomats and military personnel in relation to the 'July Crisis' of 1914. Mombauer is a historian, author, and translator of extraordinary skill. Highly recommended reading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan F. Vernon on 15 April 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A thorough study of key documents that provides any historian with the means to make up their own minds about the origins of the First World War.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mrs H on 13 Jun. 2014
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The receiver of this gift likes this book as it contains original documents to evidence the issues. Well liked gift for someone exploring ww1.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
For Scholars, a must-have documentary reference 15 July 2013
By ReasonableGuy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Whether you're a professional or amateur historian, or a librarian trying to decide whether to add this title to your shelves, this book is a resource worth having. Editor Annika Mombauer has assembled, translated, and organized a total of 428 documents including letters, diary entries, minutes, reports, diplomatic traffic, etc.. Each is dated and appears in chronological order. The earliest dates to 16 April 1911. The latest to 6 August 1914.

The book is divided in two parts, each of which is provided with an useful introduction by the editor, which may help the reader to place the documents contained therein in historical context. Part I consists of 102 documents which precede the June 28th assassination. The remainder, in Part II, covers the period from the assassination through the decision to dispatch the BEF. The editor provides a brief statement identifying each document and its significance. In some instances, there are additional cross-referencing footnotes to other sources. Provenance of the document is provided both with the document, and in an appendix. Abbreviations used in certain sources are listed. There is a glossary of names and positions. Bottom line... Very well done!

On the off chance that the editor or publisher happens to read this review, I have one suggestion. The "Look Inside" function is tailor made for a work like this. One of the biggest questions a prospective buyer is likely to have regarding this book is precisely what documents are included. You could easily provide this info by setting up the "Look Inside" feature so that the customer can view the appendix with its list of documents.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Excellent contribution to the subject 27 July 2013
By Richard Poole - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is an enormously useful book fully deserving five stars. In addition to the information it provides it is well organised and Annika Mombauer gives helpful, easy to read, introductions to the main sections and provides summaries of the story behind the original documents.

Just one problem! In several places she refers to Russian partial mobilisation being ordered/begun on (Sunday) the 26 July, p163, p306, the document apparently supporting this date being (246) Paleologue to Bienvenu-Martin

I am involved with wwwdotwhostartedwwonedotcom and I am studying this closely. All other sources, (Jannen, Ponting, Albertini, Turner, etc. etc. ) have the Tsar agreeing on Saturday the 25th July that Russian Partial mobilisation may be ordered if Sazonov judges it necessary (e.g. the Austrians invade Serbia).

The only order put into effect that day was for the Period Preparatory for War to be implemented, and it was General, not Partial, covering European Russian, the German as well as Austrian borders. This order might not have gone out until the early hours of Sunday the 26th. Otherwise no mobilisation orders were issued that day.

No mobilisation order was given until Wednesday evening, the 29 July, (after the Austrians had declared war on Serbia) when the Tsar first approved General mobilisation but then within the hour because of a message from the Kaiser changed his mind and ordered Partial mobilisation.

Any comments on this please?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great approach to the origins of the First World War 7 Jun. 2014
By Norm Frink - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book which contains hundreds of actual diplomatic and military documents (many of them with newly improved English translations by the author) as well as selections from diaries and memories that are crucial to understanding the origins of the war. Coupled with the documents are some generally incisive commentary by Professor Mombauer. The only thing I don't understand about the book are some odd gaps in the historiography of the origins of the war that is given and its excessive respect for the recent revisionists authors Clark and McMeekin with whom Professor Mombauer obviously disagrees. Nevertheless anyone who is interested in the origins of the First World War needs to have this book.
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