| Click for the Finfacts Ireland Portal Homepage |

Finfacts Business News Centre

 Irish Economy
 EU Economy
 US Economy
 UK Economy
 Global Economy
 Asia Economy

Finfacts changes from 2015


How to use our RSS feed

Follow Finfacts on Twitter

Web Finfacts

See Search Box lower down this column for searches of Finfacts news pages. Where there may be the odd special character missing from an older page, it's a problem that developed when Interactive Tools upgraded to a new content management system.


Finfacts is Ireland's leading business information site and you are in its business news section.


Finfacts Homepage

Irish Share Prices

Euribor Daily Rates

Global Cost of Living

Irish Tax - Income/Corporate




Content Management by interactivetools.com.

News : EU Economy Last Updated: Feb 10, 2015 - 3:04 PM

Centenary of gunshots that ended 43 years of fragile European peace
By Michael Hennigan, Finfacts founder and editor
Jun 27, 2014 - 7:15 AM

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, with his wife Sophie, leaving Sarajevo's City Hall, just minutes before their assassinations, June 28, 1914 Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Saturday is the centenary of two gunshots that ended 43 years of a fragile European peace, triggering two cataclysmic wars on the Continent.

June 28, 1914 in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina, it was St. Vitus Day - - an important day for Bosnian Serbs, as it was a commemoration of the Battle of Kosovo in 1389 where the Serbs were defeated by Turkey.

Bosnia-Herzegovina had been annexed by the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1908 following its seizure in the 1870's from the fading Ottoman Empire.

Bosnian Serbs as in the 1990s wished to unite with Serbia and on St Vitus Day seven conspirators were prepared to assassinate the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the throne, on his way to the City Hall with his wife Sophie.

A grenade hit the Archduke's car which was second in a  motorcade and following his visit to the City Hall, the Archduke decided to visit a hospital to check on the victims of the grenade attack.

The lead car took a wrong turn and the Archduke's car braked. Nineteen-year old Gavrilo Princip stepped forward and fired two shots which killed the royal couple.

The Austro-Hungarian Empire declared war on Serbia and within weeks with the tangle of alliances that had developed from the unification of Germany in 1871, the five great powers in Europe: United Kingdom, Germany, France, Russia and the Austro-Hungarian Empire, were at war.

By 1918 14m lives - - 5m civilians and 9m military - -  had been sacrificed and another 7m troops were permanently disabled.

"The great powers of our time," Otto von Bismarck, the German chancellor, told a Russian diplomat in 1879, "are like travellers unknown to each other, whom chance has brought together in a carriage. They watch each other and when one of them puts his hand into his pocket, his neighbour gets ready his own revolver, in order to be able to fire the first shot."

James J. Sheehan, a Stanford University historian, said in his book Where have all the soldiers gone?, that between the Peace of Westphalia 1648 when the structures of the nation state in Europe were recognised, "and 1789, the European powers had fought forty-eight wars, some of them, like the Seven Years' War in the mid-eighteenth century, lasting several years and stretching around the world. Between 1815 and 1914, there were only five wars in Europe involving two great powers; all of them were limited in time and space, and only one of them involved more than two major states.

From the end of the Franco- Prussian War in 1871 until the outbreak of the Great War in 1914, the European states were at peace with one another. This was the longest period without war in European history until it was surpassed toward the end of the twentieth century."

Related Articles

© Copyright 2015 by Finfacts.ie

Top of Page

EU Economy
Latest Headlines
Spain's strong recovery to slow in the next few years
Italy's Mezzogiorno is Achilles' heel of Euro Area - lowest birth rate since 1862
Euro Area GDP grows at weak 0.3% in Q2 2015
German GDP up 0.4% in Q2 2015; France's GDP stagnates
Germany's Surplus: Lots of critics; Credible solutions scarce
Euro Area industrial production dips in June and May after a flat April
Greece faces two years of recession according to EU officials
High EU youth unemployment rate not as bad as it seems
Eurozone retail PMI surges to highest since January 2011
ECB monetary policy still tight for Southern Europe
German exports fell in June — surplus at record; Exports up 13.7% year-on-year
Eurozone manufacturing sector continued to expand in July
Weak euro unlikely to have significant impact on Euro Area growth
Is Euro Area Ireland's top trading partner?: EU28 is overwhelmingly UK's
German car firms boost exports from Spain, UK, Portugal, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania
Flash Eurozone manufacturing/ services PMI close to four-year high despite Greek crisis
Krugman calls euro a Roach Motel; Hotel California gets 1-star grade
Greece & Euro Crisis: July 2015 articles from Finfacts
Greece and other poor countries in Euro Area will not become rich
Euro Area manufacturing/ services PMI hits four-year high in June
Western European car market: Recovery continues
Greece could become a failed state like Venezuela
Multinational companies pay on average 30% less tax than domestic competitors in EU
EU's list of 30 tax havens omits the biggest 4 in Europe
China to invest in Juncker's European investment fund
Greek talks collapse; Game theorists gambling with future — Germany's vice-chancellor
German exports and industrial production in strong rises in April
Tackling Inequality: Scandinavian countries have the most successful welfare systems in Europe
Eurozone unemployment fell by 130,000 in April 2015 — down 849,000 in 12 months
Eurozone service sector business activity slowed during May
German 2015 GDP forecast cut; Jobless level at 24-year low
Eurozone manufacturing in modest acceleration in May
FDI into Europe at record in 2014; UK on top: Germany location for future investment
Eurozone economy loses growth momentum; Jobs growth rises
Athens leak suggests Juncker has plan for Greece
Draghi will not end QE early but warns of risks
Eurozone grows faster than US and UK in Q1 2015
German GDP at slower pace, France faster in Q1 2015
Germany may cut income tax; Germans still shun risky investments
Germany had record exports and imports in March 2015