Why was the Treaty of Versailles significant to WWI?

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pholland14 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Versailles Treaty was not significant to the war as much as it was significant to the postwar era. In the Versailles Treaty, Germany had to accept all of the blame for WWI and had to pay the Allies indemnities for the war. Germany had to do all of this while losing valuable industrial and agricultural districts in its east and west, while suffering massive population loss due to the war and a famine, caused by a lack of fertilizer for crops and the British naval blockade. The generals had to sign the Versailles Treaty in order to lift the starvation blockade still waged by Britain, after the Armistice was signed in November 1918, and to keep the Allies from resuming hostilities. The German leadership knew that they would suffer personally for signing the treaty, but they felt compelled to do so. As a result, the German people felt betrayed and they turned these men into scapegoats, thus leading to the rise of Hitler fifteen years later.

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Certainly, as already stated, the primary significance of the Treaty was to end the fighting of World War I.  I think that the terms that were called for in this particular treaty might also be significant.  On one hand, the victors were able to run with being able to dictate terms of German surrender.  This might be where the most unique aspects of the Treaty lie.  While the terms of the treaty were really favorable to the victors, they were perceived as punitive and intensely unfair by others, such as the Germans. In some respects, the Treaty was more significant because it did not really operate as one as much as it did an armistice.

besure77 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Treaty of Versailles was a peace treaty that did end World War I. It was signed June 28, 1919 and was a treaty that was meant specifically for Germany but not the other countries on Germany's side. They had separate treaties. It was signed at the Versailles Palace which is near Paris and this is where it get its name. Some believe that this treaty may have led to the rise of Nazi's, leading to World War II.

In addition to losing a great deal of land and money, Germany had to limit its army to 100,000 men and they lost all of their overseas possessions.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Treaty of Versailles ended World War I.  So it was not really significant to the war.  It did not affect how the war went.  It just affected how things happened after the war and it really helped to cause the Second World War.

The Treaty of Versailles was written in such a way as to be very harsh to Germany.  It punished Germany by taking away a lot of German territory and by making Germany pay a great deal of money in war reparations.  It also made Germany admit the war was all their fault even though that is not really true.

nanie-av | Student

The Treaty of Versailles was taken in 1919, where the Great Three(France, Great Britain and USA) were blaming all to Germany.