100 years ago – the event that touched off the great war

the English language leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to describing things well and on point; not quite as rough as the compound nouns that German has to offer, but a lot of times Latin does exactly what we are looking for. I am sure that my Latin teacher would be somewhat proud that i actually remember anything from Latin besides amo, amas, yeah you get the picture.

Cue the scene from Monty Python’s ‘Life of Brian – where Graham Chapman corrects John Cleese’s terrible Latin grammar.

Anyway – casus belli – means the event that provokes or incites war; or the reasons to justify war

Franz Ferdinand and Sophie

 

Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie were shot and killed on this date 100 years ago is Sarajevo. a large assassination plot was set out with the goal being that the southern provinces could break away from the Austria-Hungary empire to form Yugoslavia. Austria-Hungary placed sanctions on Serbia after the assassination, which the Serbs failed to comply with, resulting in Austria-Hungary declaring war on Serbia.

Initially the plot failed when a bomb thrown at Ferdinand hit the back of his car. Later after giving his speech the motorcade was trying to alter its route and basically came to a halt in front of one of the conspirators – Gavrilo Princip – who shot Ferdinand in the neck and Sophia in the abdomen. Both died before they could get any medical treatment.

Final moments: The Archduke and Sophie in Sarajevo moments before Gavril Princip launched his attack

The assassination group had been given cyanide to consume after the plot, but the dosage was too weak, leading to Princip being arrested. Princip was too young to receive a death sentence – so he was given the maximum he could face – 20 years. While in prison Princip contracted tuberculosis and the ravages of the disease killed him on 28 April 1918.

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