Nazi Germany is widely called the Third Reich. But what were the First and Second Reich then?

  • 2
    I love the title :)
    – Russell
    Commented Apr 2, 2012 at 16:25
  • sorry, answer on wikipedia in a couple of clicks. voted close Commented Jul 31, 2013 at 9:09

1 Answer 1


I remembered talking about this in a history class but couldn't quite remember what the first two Reichs were. A quick search on Wikipedia redirects the first to the Holy Roman Empire (962 to 1806) and the second to the brief German Empire (1871 to 1918). Between the second and third is the Weimar Republic (1918 to 1933).

  • The German Empire is even split into two different eras from 1871 to 1918; the Bismarckian and Wilhelmine. Commented Oct 13, 2011 at 23:26
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    Yes, the Nazis regarded the Weimar Republic as a transition time before the empire was "reborn". The idea of recovering to full glory was very popular in the post-WWI Germany. Commented Oct 14, 2011 at 5:28
  • 10
    I don't want to knock this answer, for you're not doing anything wrong, but the question really shouldn't exist. It's as trivial a general-reference question as you get! It's like free rep points for whomever can look up Wikipedia the quickest. To be fair, my quibble is that this SE site doesn't offer an option to close as GR, unlike some others.
    – Noldorin
    Commented Oct 15, 2011 at 3:06
  • @Noldorin, I totally understand. I figured I may as well answer it, but it is pretty simplistic. And a quick Google search will cough up results.
    – Artemis
    Commented Oct 20, 2011 at 12:46
  • @Artemis: Fair enough. It's answered now. I just envy the easy rep points heh. :-)
    – Noldorin
    Commented Oct 20, 2011 at 16:17

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