World War I also have been known as the First World War or the Great War originated in Europe on July 28, 1914, and lasted till November 11, 1918. It is one of the largest wars in the history of the world in which more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million European people, were mobilised. The war cost lives of over 9 million combatants and 7 million civilians. Get the IAS Mains Syllabus in PDF.
The war was one of the most brutal and deadliest conflicts that happened in the history of the world. The war changed the political scenario of the world and paved way for number of revolutions in many of the involved nations .The war was between the two groups: Allies and Central Powers. The Allies included Triple Entente: Britain, France and Russia whereas the Central Power included Germany and Austria-Hungary. Catch up on IAS Mains News
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There were 4 main causes of World War I namely militarism, imperialism, alliances and nationalism. The World War I was a direct consequence of these 4 causes, however, it was triggered by when the Austrian archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated by a Bosnian revolutionary “Gavrilo Princip”.
The two were assassinated on June 28, 1914, and the world war I began immediately after this event in August 1914. The main causes are elaborated below:
Militarism: It is one of the main causes of the war . World War I was an "arms race" of Britain, France and Germany. The countries were competing for die-hard to build the largest armies and navies. The “arms race” was taken so seriously that between the year 1870 and 1914, the size of the army was more than double in all of the major powers, besides the United States of America and Great Britain.
Alliances: Many other countries that were not affected originally were compelled to join the war. As the alliances of each country added up, the war grew to overshadow the entire world.
Imperialism: Imperialism refers to the gathering of colonies. In the 1890s, many of the countries that did not many colonies started to make more colonies. This led to worldwide competition for land. There was a great conflict between the old Imperialist countries (Britain and France) and the newly formed imperialist countries (Ger-many). This conflict paved way for the war.
Nationalism: Nationalism refers to having pride in one's own. The nationalists believe that their nation is better than other countries. The spirit of nationalism was used as a fuel the war by the involved powers.
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There were two groups involved in the war. Group 1 were the Allies comprising the nations Serbia, Britain, Russia, France, Belgium, USA, Portugal, Romania etc. Group 2 were the Central Powers involving the countries: Austria-Hungary, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Bulgaria etc.
On June 28, 1919, Germany signed a treaty with its Allies i.e. the Triple Entente) at Versailles, near Paris. The treaty concluded 14 points.
Following treaties were signed after the WWI: -
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