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Oxford Revise AQA GCSE History: Conflict and tension: The inter-war years, 1918–1939 Glossary

The key vocabulary you need to learn for your AQA GCSE History paper. Find all the terms and definitions you need to understand, from ‘abdicate’ to ‘veto’.

A - B (Abdicate to Big Three)

To abdicate is to give up the throne of a country.

Allies are a group of countries working together; ‘the Allies’ is a term usually used to describe Britain, France and the USA, who worked together during the two World Wars.

The Anschluss is the political union between Germany and Austria.

Antisemitic is hatred for and persecution of Jewish people as an ethnic, religious or racial group.

Appeasement is the policy of giving someone what they want in the hope of avoiding war.

An arbitration is a procedure aimed at settling disputes through use of an impartial third party.

An armistice is an initial agreement signed to stop fighting during a war; countries then work out a peace treaty.

Austro-Hungarian Empire
The Austro-Hungarian Empire was a dual monarchy of Austria and Hungary and its empire, ruled by the Habsburg dynasty from 1867–1918.

‘Big Three’
The ‘Big Three’ were the representatives of the three most powerful victorious countries, who met at the Paris Peace Conference to decide how to treat the countries that had lost the First World War; consists of Britain, France, and the USA.

C - D (Capitalist to disarmament)

A capitalist is a person who supports a political system in which people can work to make money by investing in industry.

civil servants
Civil servants are the people who work for a government.

Comintern is an abbreviation for the Communist International, an organisation controlled by the USSR and set up to spread communism.

A communist is a person who supports a left-wing political system where all property is owned by the government; all people are equal and they are paid by the government according to their needs.

Conscription is a law making it compulsory for all men of a certain age to join the armed forces, carry out military service and be available to fight at any time.

A covenant is an agreement; the Covenant of the League of Nations set up what the League was and what members could expect to happen.

To demilitarise is to remove all military (weapons and troops) from an area.

Depression is an economic state; when a country has little or no money. The Depression was a time during the 1930s when many banks and businesses failed, and millions of people lost their jobs.

A dictator is a ruler with total control over how a country is governed.

A diktat is a forced treaty; Germany called the Treaty of Versailles a ‘Diktat’ or ‘dictated peace’ because it was forced on them without any consultation.

Disarmament is the reduction or limitation of the number of weapons and/or troops a country has.

E - K (Economic sanctions to Kaiser)

economic sanctions
Economic sanctions are penalties used to punish a country by stopping trading with them.

An embargo is a government ban on trade with another nation.

A fascist is a person who supports a right-wing political system where a dictator controls people’s lives and there is a strong sense of nationalism.

Fourteen Points
The ‘Fourteen Points’ are suggestions for a peace settlement after the First World War that aimed to create fairness and peace, promoted by US President Woodrow Wilson.

freedom of the seas
Freedom of the seas is the idea that the oceans should be free for all nations to sail.

Adolf Hitler was the leader of the German Nazi Party, and dictator of Germany between 1933 and 1945.

Hyperinflation is a sudden, dramatic rise in prices.

Infrastructure is the facilities and services needed for a working society, such as energy, water and transport networks.

Isolationism is a policy in which a country does not get involved in foreign affairs.

Kaiser is the German word for ‘emperor’; the title of the German monarch.

L - O (League of Nations to Ottoman Empire)

League of Nations
The League of Nations was formed under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles; a group of countries that worked together towards global peace and cooperation.

Lebensraum is the German word for ‘living space’ and it was Hitler’s idea of seizing living space in Eastern Europe.

Locarno Treaties
The Locarno Treaties were seven agreements signed in 1925, which allowed Germany to join the League of Nations.

A mandate is a territory that was assigned by the League of Nations to another power to be governed.

Mitigation is the act of bringing people together to talk through their differences/problems.

moral condemnation
Moral condemnation is to tell someone that they are in the wrong.

Benito Mussolini was the founder of fascism, and dictator of Italy between 1922 and 1943.

Nazi Party
The Nazi Party was a far-right political party in Germany, led by Adolf Hitler.

Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman Empire was an empire of Turkish tribes in Asia Minor, dominant in the sixteenth century; replaced by the Turkish Republic in the 1920s.

P - R (Pact of Steel to Rhineland)

Pact of Steel
The Pact of Steel was an alliance, formally known as the Pact of Friendship and Alliance, made between Germany and Italy in 1939.

Paris Peace Conference
The Paris Peace Conference was a meeting held at the Palace of Versailles in France at the end of the First World War, to decide how to punish the countries that had lost the war.

Plebiscite is when the people of a country, not just politicians, vote on a matter.

Propaganda is the systematic spreading of ideas and information in order to influence people’s thinking and actions, often through the use of media such as films, radio broadcasts, and newspapers.

To ratify is to agree with; make official a treaty, contract or agreement.

Rearmament is the process of building up new stocks of weapons or replacing old weapons with new ones.

To remilitarise is to rebuild stores of weapons and troops.

Reparations are money paid as compensation to people or a country that has been harmed. Germany made reparations (payments) to some of the winning countries after the First World War, in compensation for the damage done by the fighting.

The Rhineland is an area around the River Rhine in Western Germany, bordering France.

S - V (Self-determination to veto)

Self-determination is the idea that countries should be allowed to govern themselves rather than being in an empire.

social insurance
Social insurance provides money to help people who cannot work due to an illness.

Spanish Civil War
The Spanish Civil War was a conflict between fascist Nationalists and democratic Republicans to rule Spain, 1936–39.

Joseph Stalin was the dictator of the USSR between 1924 and 1953.

Unanimous is when everyone agrees.

The USSR stands for the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, or Soviet Union: the name given to communist Russia and its dependencies.

Veto is the right to reject a proposal.