Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim

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Baron Hans von Wangenheim

Hans, Baron von Wangenheim (1859–1915) was a diplomat for Imperial Germany.


Hans von Wangenheim was a German noble born in Gotha. In 1902 he married Johanna von Spitzemberg (1877-1960), the daughter of Carl, Baron von Spitzemberg.

He served abroad as

He died in service in Constantinople.


With the outbreak of the Great War Wangenheim was instrumental in securing the entry of the Ottoman Empire into the war as part of the Central Powers. Wangenheim oversaw Max von Oppenheim's successful attempt to get the Ottoman Caliph to declare Jihad against the Triple Entente.[1] During the time of Armenian Genocide there were accusations of German complicity and question's were raised as to Wangenheim's position of 'non-intervention'; the American Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire Henry Morgenthau in his book Ambassador Morgenthau's Story (1918) would virulently criticise Wangenheim's role.[2] In an interview with an American journalist, Wangenheim stated: "I do not blame the Turks for what they are doing to the Armenians...They are entirely justified".[3]

Also in Turkey at that time was the socialist revolutionary, arms dealer, and German agent Alexander Parvus. Wangenheim sent Parvus to Berlin in March 1915 endorsing Parvus' plan that Germany back the Bolsheviks against the Russian Empire.[4]

Russian Statesman Sergey Sazonov regarded Wangenheim as "the most successful of the German fighting diplomatists".[5]


Regarding personal names: Freiherr is a former title (translated as Baron), which is now legally a part of the last name. The feminine forms are Freifrau and Freiin.


  1. ^ Hopkirk, Peter On Secret Service East of Constantinople Oxford University Press (1994) p55-56
  2. ^ Huberta von Voss (editor) Portraits of Hope: Armenians in the Contemporary World Berghahn Books (2007) p48
  3. ^ Balkakian, Peter The Burning Tigris, New York: HarperCollins, 2003 page 285.
  4. ^ Barry Rubin and Wolfgang Schwanitz Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East Yale University Press (2014) p37
  5. ^ Sazonov, Serge Fateful Years 1909-1916 (1928) p228