Wilhelm II, German Emperor

Wilhelm II, German Emperor

Emperor and King of Prussia
Born Jan 27, 1859
Hometown Prussia
Died Jun 4, 1941
Death Place Netherlands
Other Names Frederick Wilhelm...

Wilhelm II or William II was the last German Emperor (Kaiser) and King of Prussia, ruling the German Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia from 15 June 1888 to 9 November 1918. He was a grandson of the British Queen Victoria and related to many monarchs and princes of Europe. Crowned in 1888, he dismissed the Chancellor, Prince Otto von Bismarck, in 1890 and launched Germany on a bellicose "New Course" in foreign affairs that culminated in his support for Austria-Hungary in the crisis of July 1914 that led to World War I. Bombastic and impetuous, he sometimes made tactless pronouncements on sensitive topics without consulting his ministers, and allowed his generals to dictate policy during World War I with little regard for the civilian government. An ineffective war leader, he lost the support of the army, abdicated in November 1918, and fled to exile in the Netherlands.… Read More

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1859 Birth Wilhelm was born on 27 January 1859 at the Crown Prince's Palace in Berlin to Prince Frederick William of Prussia (the future Frederick III) and his wife, Victoria, Princess Royal, the eldest daughter of Britain's Queen Victoria. … Read More
1861 2 Years Old He was the first grandchild of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, but more importantly, as the first son of the Crown Prince of Prussia, Wilhelm was from 1861 second in the line of succession to Prussia, and also, after 1871, to the newly created German Empire, which, according to the constitution of the German Empire, was ruled by the Prussian King. … Read More
1863 4 Years Old In 1863 Wilhelm was taken to England to be present at the wedding of his Uncle Bertie, (later King Edward VII), and Princess Alexandra of Denmark. … Read More


1877 18 Years Old As a teenager he was educated at Kassel at the Friedrichsgymnasium. In January 1877, Wilhelm finished high school and on his eighteenth birthday received as a present from his grandmother, Queen Victoria, the Order of the Garter. … Read More


1880 - 1882 3 More Events
1884 25 Years Old Beginning in 1884, Bismarck began advocating that Kaiser Wilhelm send his grandson on various diplomatic missions, a privilege denied to the Crown Prince. … Read More
1886 27 Years Old In 1886, also, thanks to Herbert von Bismarck, the son of the Chancellor, Prince Wilhelm began to be trained twice a week at the Foreign Ministry.
1887 28 Years Old One privilege was denied to Prince Wilhelm: to represent Germany at his maternal grandmother, Queen Victoria's, Golden Jubilee Celebrations in London in 1887.
1888 29 Years Old 1 More Event
The German Emperor Wilhelm I died in Berlin on 9 March 1888, and Prince Wilhelm's father was proclaimed Emperor as Frederick III. … Read More


…  In an outburst in April 1889, Wilhelm angrily implied that "an English doctor killed my father, and an English doctor crippled my arm – which is the fault of my mother", who allowed no German physicians to attend to herself or her immediate family.
1890 31 Years Old 1 More Event
The final split between monarch and statesman occurred soon after an attempt by Bismarck to implement a far-reaching anti-Socialist law in early 1890. … Read More
1896 37 Years Old …  There were a number of notorious examples, such as the Kruger telegram of 1896 in which Wilhelm congratulated President Paul Kruger of the Transvaal Republic on the suppression of the British Jameson Raid, thus alienating British public opinion. … Read More


1900 41 Years Old 1 More Event
Following the dismissal of Hohenlohe in 1900, Wilhelm appointed the man whom he regarded as "his own Bismarck", Bernhard von Bülow. … Read More
1901 42 Years Old Despite his poor relations with his English relatives, nevertheless, when he received news that Queen Victoria was dying at Osborne House in January 1901, Wilhelm traveled to England and was at her bedside when she died and remained for the funeral.
1905 46 Years Old One of Wilhelm's diplomatic blunders sparked the Moroccan Crisis of 1905, when he made a spectacular visit to Tangier, in Morocco. … Read More


1910 51 Years Old He also was present at the funeral of King Edward VII in 1910.
1913 54 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1913, Wilhelm hosted a lavish wedding in Berlin for his only daughter, Victoria Louise. … Read More
…  During the War of 1914 to 1918, he became the central target of British anti-German propaganda and the personification of a hated enemy.
1917 58 Years Old Upon hearing in July 1917 that his cousin George V had changed the name of the British royal house to Windsor, Wilhelm remarked that he planned to see Shakespeare's play The Merry Wives of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. The Kaiser's support collapsed completely in October–November 1918 in the army, in the civilian government, and in German public opinion, as President Woodrow Wilson made clear the Kaiser could no longer be a party to peace negotiations.
That year also saw Wilhelm sickened during the worldwide 1918 flu pandemic, though he survived.


1919 60 Years Old …  Upon the conclusion of the Treaty of Versailles in early 1919, Article 227 expressly provided for the prosecution of Wilhelm "for a supreme offence against international morality and the sanctity of treaties", but Queen Wilhelmina and the Dutch government refused to extradite him, despite appeals from the Allies. … Read More
1920 61 Years Old He purchased a country house in the municipality of Doorn, known as Huis Doorn and moved in on 15 May 1920. … Read More
1922 63 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1922, Wilhelm published the first volume of his memoirs—a very slim volume that insisted he was not guilty of initiating the Great War, and defended his conduct throughout his reign, especially in matters of foreign policy. … Read More
1938 79 Years Old Hearing of the murder of the wife of former Chancellor Schleicher, he said "We have ceased to live under the rule of law and everyone must be prepared for the possibility that the Nazis will push their way in and put them up against the wall!" Wilhelm was also appalled at the Kristallnacht of 9–10 November 1938, saying "I have just made my views clear to Auwi fourth son in the presence of his brothers. … Read More
1939 80 Years Old In the wake of the German victory over Poland in September 1939, Wilhelm's adjutant, General von Dommes, wrote on his behalf to Hitler, stating that the House of Hohenzollern "remained loyal" and noted that nine Prussian Princes (one son and eight grandchildren) were stationed at the front, concluding "because of the special circumstances that require residence in a neutral foreign country, His Majesty must personally decline to make the aforementioned comment. … Read More
Wilhelm greatly admired the success which Hitler was able to achieve in the opening months of the Second World War, and personally sent a congratulatory telegram when the Netherlands surrendered in May 1940: "My Fuhrer, I congratulate you and hope that under your marvellous leadership the German monarchy will be restored completely." … Read More
1941 82 Years Old Wilhelm died of a pulmonary embolus in Doorn, Netherlands, on 3 June 1941, aged 82, just weeks before the German invasion of the Soviet Union. … Read More
Original Authors of this text are noted on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilhelm_II,_German_Emperor.
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