Armistice Day is an annual commemoration of the end of the First World War in 1918. Public ceremonies are kept on the nearest Sunday, which is now renamed Remembrance Sunday in recognition of other conflicts.
AUSTRIA-Hungary’s attempt to snatch Serbia from the fading Ottoman Empire dragged Germany and Russia into the dispute.
Britain and France were already pledged to the support of Russia, and very soon the most devastating war in history had spread to all Europe and beyond.
The world finally wearied of war in 1918, and on November 11th that year, at eleven o’clock in the morning, the Armistice of Compiègne in France brought a halt to hostilities.
Six months later, on 28 June 1919, the Treaty of Versailles formally ended the state of war between Germany and the Allies.
Nine million combatants and seven million civilians had died. In 1919, a two-minute silence was observed in London on the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice, at the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, “a silence” said one newspaper “which was almost pain”.
A year later, King George V unveiled the Cenotaph in Whitehall as a lasting memorial to the Fallen.