Berlin: Zentralrat, 1919. First edition. Cloth. 4to, 277pp; contemporary buckram. Pages somewhat toned; few pencil notations and marginalia; short closed tear to title page; exlibris stamp from former East German library on verso of title; extremities of covers rubbed; library label removed from base of spine, still very good. Item #203190
Original documentation from this dark moment in the history of modern Germany, the weeks of counter-revolution in Berlin that followed the murders of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg in January 1919. The councils that had been established by the 1918 revolution in the wake of Germany's disastrous defeat in the First World War were being swept aside by their own leadership. The rather hapless head of state Friedrich Ebert had allied himself with the armed forces, and, ominously, with the reactionary Freikorps militia bands commanded by Gustav Noske. It was a peculiar alliance that shortly solidified Ebert's power and set the stage for the creation of the Weimar Republic, even while simultaneously sowing the seeds of violent extremism that would emerge fully fledged in the National Socialist movement some years later. Along with a variety of nuts-and-bolts issues of procedure recorded in these stenographic minutes, are speeches and debates surrounding the bloody massacres of revolutionaries spearheaded by Noske. An important record of a fascinating, if murky, episode in modern German history.