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Leo von Caprivi

Leo Graf (Count) von Caprivi (February 24, 1831 - February 6, 1899 was a German soldier and statesman, who succeeded Otto von Bismarck as Chancellor of Germany, serving between 1890 and 1894.

Caprivi entered the army in 1849, and served in the wars of 1866 and 1870, the latter as a corps chief of staff. From 1883 to 1888 he served as Chief of the Admiralty, a position in which he showed significant administrative talent, leading to him being appointed chancellor by Wilhelm II upon Bismarck's dismissal in 1890.

Caprivi's administration was marked by the "New Course" in both foreign and domestic policy, with moves towards conciliation of the Social Democrats on the domestic front, and towards a pro-British foreign policy, exemplified by the Zanzibar treaty of July 1890, in which the British ceded the island of Heligoland to Germany in exchange for control of Zanzibar. This led to animosity from the colonialist parties, while his free trading policies led to opposition from conservative agrarian protectionists. He also managed to get the Caprivi Strip added to German South West Africa, which linked that territory with the Zambezi River.

In 1892, following a legislative defeat on an educational bill, Caprivi was dismissed as Prussiann Minister-President and replaced by Count Botho von Eulenburg, leading to an untenable division of powers between the Chancellor and the Prussian premier, ultimately leading to the dismissal of both in 1894 and their succession by Prince Chlodwig of Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst.

Chancellor of Germany
Preceded by:
Otto von Bismarck
1890 - 1894 Followed by:
Prince Hohenlohe
Prime Minister of Prussia
Preceded by:
'''Otto von Bismarck
1890 - 1892 Followed by:
'''Count Eulenberg