1918: November 11
After hostilities were brought to an end on the Eastern Front, with the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk in March 1918, Bulgaria ended its participation in the war on September 30 of the same year. Jaded and no longer capable of supporting the cost of war, the Ottoman Empire and Austria-Hungary concluded an armistice a month later, on October 30 and November 3.
The most symbolic armistice came into effect at the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, when a German delegation met with Allied Supreme Commander Foch in a railway carriage outside Compiègne, 65 kilometres north-east of Paris. The terms of the agreement required the Germans to evacuate German-occupied territories within two weeks. Allied forces were to occupy the east bank of the Rhine within a month.
The armistice was renewed each month until the signing of the peace Treaty in Versailles the following year. The Treaty, which deprived Germany of 13% of its 1914 territory and limited the German army to a maximum of 100,000 men, was considered excessively punitive and humiliating within the country.
The First World War left nine million soldiers dead and 21 million wounded. Each belligerent country lost nearly a million lives and at least six million civilians died from disease, exposure or starvation.