The Congress of Berlin :In the summer of 1878, Bismarck held this congress to end the Treaty of San Stefano humiliated Russia, limited the size of Bulgaria, and returned Ottoman land. Also, the Balkan states; Serbia, Montenegro, and Romania, were independent. Other Balkan areas like Bosnia and Herzegovina were under Austrian rule but not owned by them.
The Triple Alliance :In 1882, Germany, Austria-Hungary, & Italy allied after Russia ended the Three Emperor's League. They were all against France & liked the EXISTING political order. But Bismarck was still nice to Russia & he signed the Reinsurance Treaty with them to avoid a Russian-French alliance & a two-front war. But when the German Emperor William II fired Bismarck, Germany got a new foreign policy.
The Triple Entente :After Bismarck was fired and William ended the Reinsurance Treaty, Russia, France, and Britain formed a loose confederation called the Triple Entente. They were against the Triple Alliance and Europe became more inflexible and unwilling to compromise. WWI was caused during these two groups battle over the Ottoman Empire.
Militarism :a policy of aggressive military preparedness in particular, the large armies based on mass conscription and complex, inflexible plans for mobilization that most European nations had before World War I. OR as armies grew big, military leaders' (who came up with complex plans to become quickly ready for battle) influence grew. Their plans could never change.
The Black Hand :The assassination of the Austrian Archduke Francis Ferdinand and his wife Sophia in June 1914 was carried out by the Bosnian activist who worked for the Black Hand. The Black Hand was a Serbian terrorist organization dedicated to the creation of a pan Slavic kingdom.
The "blank check" :Emperor William II and his chancellor, Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg assured Austria-Hungary that they could rely on Germany's full support even if it resulted in a war against Russia. This followed Ferdinand's murder by a Serbian.
The Schlieffen Plan :The German General Alfred von Schleiffen made a plan based on the two front war against the allied Russia and France. His plan was for minimal troop deployment against Russia while most of the German army would invade W. France through Belgium. Germany declared war on France and asked Belgium if German troops could pass through their land to get to France. But the British declared war on Germany since they wanted to maintain world power.
The First Battle of the Marne :Following the failed Schleiffen Plan, the Germans crossed Belgium and stopped at the Marne River. The Germans were close to victory but the British had arrived swiftly. The British and French (under General Joseph Joffre) stopped the Germans at the First Battle of the Marne. The Germans retreated but the French were too tired to gain an advantage. The war turned into a stalemate, or a tie.
Trench warfare :After the tie of the First Battle of the Marne, the Western Front had trenches from the English Channel to Switzerland to keep both sides in the same position for 4 years. It's warfare in which the opposing forces attack and counterattack from a relatively permanent system of trenches protected by barbed wire characteristic of World War I. Life in the trenches was dirty, boring, dangerous, and full of the dead. Opposing armies went by the live and let live motto so there were no attacks during breakfast or bathroom breaks. In order to pass time, humorous magazines like the BEF Times were made.
The Battles of Tannenberg and the Masurian Lakes :The Russian army moved into E. Germany but was defeated at the