On This Day – 11 November – Armistice of 11 November 1918

The Armistice of 11 November 1918 was the armistice signed at Le Francport near Compiègne that ended fighting on land, sea and air in World War I between the Allies and their last remaining opponent, Germany. Previous armistices had been agreed with Bulgaria, the Ottoman Empire and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Also known as the Armistice of Compiègne from the place where it was signed at 5:45 a.m. by the Allied Supreme Commander, French Marshal Ferdinand Foch, it came into force at 11:00 a.m. Paris time on 11 November 1918 and marked a victory for the Allies and a defeat for Germany, although not formally a surrender.

The actual terms, largely written by Foch, included the cessation of hostilities, the withdrawal of German forces to behind the Rhine, Allied occupation of the Rhineland and bridgeheads further east, the preservation of infrastructure, the surrender of aircraft, warships, and military materiel, the release of Allied prisoners of war and interned civilians, eventual reparations, no release of German prisoners and no relaxation of the naval blockade of Germany. Although the armistice ended the fighting on the Western Front, it had to be prolonged three times until the Treaty of Versailles, which was signed on 28 June 1919, took effect on 10 January 1920.

Fighting continued up to 11 o’clock, with 2,738 men dying on the last day of the war.

Photograph taken after reaching agreement for the armistice that ended World War I. This is Ferdinand Foch’s own railway carriage in the Forest of Compiègne. Foch’s chief of staff Maxime Weygand is second from left. Third from the left is the senior British representative, Sir Rosslyn Wemyss. Foch is second from the right. On the right is Admiral George Hope.

Published by Jörgen Hartogs

I offer tours in Dutch, Flemish, German and English in Ireland , Wales and Scotland. I also offer walking tours in Adare, Newcastle West, Limerick, Ballingarry, Rathkeale and other towns and cities. I'm a fully qualified, Fáilte Ireland certified, guide and a full ATGI (Association of approved Tour guides of Ireland) and ITGA (Independent Tour Guides of Ireland) member.

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