Image of a copy of The Treaty of Peace, hardcover copy Source: Treaty of Versailles, Wikimedia.

The armistice ended the actual fighting of World War I, but the war did not end until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. The Treaty of Versailles was the name given to the treaty hammered out by the Big Four at Paris between the Allies and Germany. Additional treaties were also written for peace between the Allies and the other Central Powers through the year 1920.

Video segment. Assistance may be required. Pay close attention while watching the following video about the Treaty of Versailles.

Source: World War I- Treaty of Versailles, watch Mojo, YouTube


Interactive exercise. Assistance may be required. Each of the Big Four members is in the photo below. Click on name of each leader and drag it to the appropriate goal.


Answer the following questions in your notes.

  1. Did all members of the Big Four have the same goals for the treaty? Make note of any similarities or differences.
  2. Do you believe that Wilson's Fourteen Points can satisfy all of the goals of each of the Big Four? Explain your answer.
  3. Did the varying goals of the Big Four leaders strengthen or weaken the treaty? Explain your answer.
: Image of several men both seated and standing around a long table. Those seated are signing papers. The high walls above them are covered with mirrors. Source: William Orpen-The signing of peace of in the Hall of Mirrors, Wikimedia.

On June 28, 1919,when the Allies met in Versailles to formulate the treaty to end World War I with Germany and Austria-Hungary, most of Wilson's Fourteen Points were rejected by the leaders of England and France. Wilson was disappointed to learn that England, France, and Italy were mostly interested in regaining what they had lost and gaining more by punishing Germany. Germany was even more disappointed to learn that Wilson's peace plan did not apply to them.

Interactive exercise. Assistance may be required. Here is a breakdown of the components of the Treaty of Versailles. Click on each component to learn more about the agreements made at the signing of the Treaty of Versailles.

Photo of six German delegates standing around a large table that has several stacks of papers.

Source: Versailles deutsche Verhandlungedelegation, Wikipedia

This is a photo of the German delegates who participated in negotiations of the Treaty of Versailles.

President Wilson's plan for a just world peace was accepted by Germany in its entirety, but the leaders of Italy, France and Great Britain refused to give up their goals for retribution against Germany. Thus, many of its tenets were sacrificed at the peace conference.


Imagine that you are a German citizen and you have just learned about the terms of the Treaty of Versailles. In your notes, write a letter to the members of the German delegates to address the following questions.

  1. Did Germany get a just peace? Would it be a lasting one? Why or why not?
  2. How could these terms affect Germany's economy? Considering your answer to that question, what feelings would a German citizen have in regard to payment of reparations? Why?
  3. Consider the military restrictions. How would these help a "strongman" such as Hitler to gain power in Germany?