Who was Adolf Hitler?

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Adolf Hitler Bio

There is no other man in the entire history of mankind comparable to Adolf Hitler for the crimes against humanity. He gave birth to Nazism, and systematically annihilated 6 million Jews and 5 million non-Aryans in the Holocaust. Hitler started World War II. An estimated 50 million people were killed during World War II.

Adolf Hitler was the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party popularly called Nazi Party. He ruled Germany as the leader and chancellor of the Reich (Führer und Reichskanzler) from 1934 to 1945. He was born in Austria, in April 20, 1889 and committed suicide in a bunker in Berlin, in April 30, 1945.

Hitler was World War I veteran. He joined the German Workers' Party in 1919, and became party leader in 1921. He was imprisoned for the attempted coup in 1923. After his release in 1924, he began to speak of Pan-Germanism, anti-Semitism, and anti-Communism. When he became the Chancellor of Germany in 1933, he transformed the Weimar Republic into the Third Reich. Third Reich, according to Nazism, is a single-party dictatorship.

Hitler re-armed Germany and attacked Poland in September 1939, which was the beginning of World War II. By 1941, he and his allies had occupied most of Europe and North Africa. However, in 1943, he began to lose war in many fronts. During the last days of war, Germany was attacked in two fronts by Russia’s Red army and Allied Forces. Hitler committed suicide with his recently married wife Eva Braun.

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Nazi Swastika, created by Vinaya
Nazi Swastika, created by Vinaya

Adolf Hitler’s Childhood

Adolf Hitler was born in Ranshofen, a small village in Austria. Hitler's father, Alois Hitler was an illegitimate child, and he bore surname of his mother Maria Anna Schicklgruber. When he was 39, Alois took Hitler as his surname.

Alois Hitler and Klara Polzl had six children, and Hitler was the fourth child. Hitler’s older three siblings died in infancy thus he became the oldest child in the family. Hitler was three, when his parents moved to Passau, Germany, where he acquired Bavarian dialect. In 1895, Hitler’s father acquired a small landholding at Hafeld, and began farming bees. Hitler was sent to a nearby school. He took singing lessons, and sang in church choir.

Hitler’s brother died in 1900. Bereavement changed Hitler from confident and intelligent student, to a sad and isolated boy.

Since his childhood, Hitler was obsessed with German nationalism. He preferred to use German greeting "Heil", and sang the German anthem instead of the Austrian Imperial anthem.

Since his childhood, there was a constant conflict between Hitler and his father, and it rose high when Alois forced Hitler to make a career in the customs bureau like him. Contrarily, Hitler had other things in his mind, he wanted to study painting. Alois died in 1903, and a year later Hitler enrolled at the Realschule in Steyr. In 1905, Hitler passed the final exams and left for Vienna. He worked as a casual laborer and artist selling his watercolors. Hitler’s mother died in 1907.

Hitler was rejected from the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna in 1907 and then again in 1908. By 1910, he had no money and had to live in a house for poor working men.

Hitler in World War I. First row, left
Hitler in World War I. First row, left | Source
Hitler and Mussolini
Hitler and Mussolini | Source
Victims of Nazi Terror in the Darnitsa concentration camp, Kiev, Ukraine
Victims of Nazi Terror in the Darnitsa concentration camp, Kiev, Ukraine | Source

The Rise of Adolf Hitler

Hitler moved to Munich in 1913. He had found his father picture book on war when he was a child, since then he was always fascinated by warfare. World War I gave him an opportunity to explore other possibilities in his life. As a German soldier, he was rewarded the Iron Cross, Second Class, in 1914, and the Iron Cross, First Class, in 1918.

In 1919, Hitler joined German Workers' Party in Munich as an army political agent. When he became the head of party's propaganda in 1920, he left the army and devoted himself in politics. In the same year German Workers' Party was renamed the National-sozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (Nazi).

With his energetic leadership and the ability to speak fearlessly, Hitler gained prominence within the Nazi party. He believed in militant tactics. However, his attempt to seize power failed in 1923. He was imprisoned for nine months.

After he was released from prison, Hitler was forbidden to speak publicly, but he wrote for nationalist newspapers. By 1926, Hitler had strengthened his position in the party. In 1929 Germany was in Great Depression because of war reparations, which provided a fertile ground for Nazi Party and Hitler’s radical ideas. Hitler made an alliance with Alfred Hugenberg in 1930. Hugenberg’s newspaper helped Hitler to reach every segment of the German society. He was able to draw support from businessman who wanted to use their money to establish a strong right-wing government. With his arguments that Germany will rise from the ashes, Hitler attracted the lower middleclass and the unemployed.

In 1928 national election, Nazi party had secured only 2.6 percent of the votes, however, in 1930 it rose to more than 18 percent, becoming the second largest party in Germany. In 1932, Hitler garnered 36.8 percent of the votes in presidential election. He became the Chancellor of Germany on January 30, 1933, Hitler.

The Reichstag fire, on February 27, 1933 gave Hitler an excuse to proclaim emergency rule. He was able to get consent for elections from President Hindenburg. Nazi Party secured 43.9 percent of the votes in the elections held on March 5. On March 23, 1933, a bill was passed which gave absolute powers to Hitler. When President Hindenburg died on August 2, 1934, presidency was merged with chancellorship. Hitler became the supreme leader and chancellor of Germany (Führer und Reichskanzler)

1926-1927 edition of Mein Kampf
1926-1927 edition of Mein Kampf | Source

Adolf Hitler Facts

Hitler believed in superiority of German people, which according to him belonged to Aryan race. He had even tried to “breed” blue-eyed golden haired people in his “labs”

Adolf Hitler was an artist and an excellent orator.

Hitler believed only strong people have rights to survive and the week must perish.

He was a vegetarian.

Adolf Hitler was Time Magazine’s Person of the Year in 1939.

Books by Adolf Hitler

Mein Kampf

In 1923, Adolf Hitler was imprisoned for his failed attempt of a coup. He dictated Mein Kampf while in prison. The first volume of Mein Kampf was published in 1925 and second volume appeared in 1926.

The first part of Mein Kampf is a brief account of Hitler’s early life and the beginning of his political career. In the second part, Hitler elaborates his beliefs on political system, nationalism, the state, and the citizen. He writes about his hatred of Communism, Judaism, federalism, and trade organizations. Hitler also explains the origins of his anti-Semitism and militarism. Hitler writes Germany must first re-arm, and form alliances with Fascist Italy and the British Empire, then must go to war against France and eastern European countries.

When Mein Kampf was published, it became a best seller. Before Hitler became chancellor, he had already made 1.2 million Reichsmarks from the royalties. By the end of war, 10 million copies of Mein Kampf were sold or distributed.

Mein Kampf is sold openly in India, Sweden, Turkey, Canada, France, United States, United Kingdom, Austria, Nepal and Poland. One hundred thousand copies of Mein Kampf were sold in Turkey in just two months, in 2005. In the United States, 15,000 copies of Mein Kampf are sold every year.

Selling Mein Kampf in China, Argentina, the Netherlands and Russia is illegal.

Mein Kampf is also available on public domains.

Zweites Buch: Sequel of Mein Kampf

Hitler had also written another book, which he never made public. The manuscript known as Zweites Buch (Second Book) was discovered in 1945. It was published in Germany in 1961, and the English edition appeared in 1962, in New York. The 2003 edition of Zweites Buch is titled Hitler's Second Book: The Unpublished Sequel to Mein Kampf.

Charlie Chaplin as Adenoid Hynkel, the indirect portrayal of Hitler in The Great Dictator
Charlie Chaplin as Adenoid Hynkel, the indirect portrayal of Hitler in The Great Dictator | Source

Adolf Hitler in Movies

The Great Dictator (1940)

Charlie Chaplin was one of the few public figures to castigate Hitler. In The Great Dictator, Charlie Chaplin caricatures Hitler and his policies. The Great Dictator was Charlie Chaplin’s first talking film. In his iconic double roles, Chaplin plays a Jewish Barber and a dictator. In the climax of the film, the barber is mistaken as the dictator. Adenoid Hynkel, the indirect portrayal of Hitler, is not only a brutal dictator but also a comic character. Hitler had banned this film in Germany, however, it is said he watched it privately.

Downfall (2004)

Downfall is a German film which depicts the last 10 days of Hitler’s life: lost war, marriage with Eva Braun and suicide. It was directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel and nominated for Best Foreign Language Film in Academy Awards, and won BBC Four World Cinema competition in 2005. According to the critics, Bruno Ganz as Adolf Hitler is the best portrayal of Adolf Hitler on screen. Some people have criticized the film for portrayal of Hitler as a man and raised a debate such as “are we allowed to show the monster as a human being?"

Hitler: The Rise of Evil (2003)

Hitler: The Rise of Evil is a 179 minutes film directed by Christian Duguay and portrays Hitler’s complete life. The film gives comprehensive account of Hitler’s poor childhood in Austria, a soldier in First World War, a Nazi leader, his complicated affair with Eva Braun, his perception of German people, and failed attempts of assassinations.

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Comments 23 comments

Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal Author

Thelma,

I have read Mein Kampf. Hitler wrote this book before be became Chancellor. Thanks for sharing your story.

Cheers


Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma Alberts 3 years ago from Germany

Well done Vinaya! This is another awesome hub you created and well researched, too. I did not have to read this but I was curious if I still have something to know about this killer and so I read until the end.

I did not know that Mein Kampf is still sold outside Germany. You know, a few years ago I have found an old edition of this book in the flea market in Germany, but I did not dare to buy it. It was only 50 cent. What a pity I could have sold it for thousand €.

Thanks for sharing. Thumbs up!


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal Author

Hi Rahul,

Thanks for stopping by. I'm glad that you were able to learn something new from this hub.


rahul0324 profile image

rahul0324 3 years ago from Gurgaon, India

A very exhaustive .. and detailed information about the worlds most Callous Dictator...

I learned many new facts ... thanks to your article


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

Thanks for enlightening me on the topic, most interesting facts here.


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal Author

@safiq ali, thanks for suggestion. Actually, I'm reading a lot on Hindu symbols, and want to write about my readings.

@nightnight, thanks

@always exploring, perhaps you are right, he became monster because he was rejected by the society in the beginning.

@Angel, thanks for always leaving a sweet message. I have taken interest on Hitler since childhood. He reminds me how a man first fools the entire world, and then becomes a monster.


Angelme566 profile image

Angelme566 3 years ago

Wow ! A 5 star hub again , this can be a hub for a day again ! So well researched work , very broad and loaded ! I loved reading this hub from start to finish. My great friend used to tell me about Adolf for it was his idol and this hub broaden more my knowledge about Hitler. Hitler is history and will live forever in all generations. Thanks for posting this one , thanks for the effort ! Voted up and will be shared !


always exploring profile image

always exploring 3 years ago from Southern Illinois

I read somewhere that he loved painting and considered himself an artist, when he was refused entry into the art academy is when he became bitter. I hope you write more about him..Thank you again for bringing valued articles.


nightnight profile image

nightnight 3 years ago from UK

Really detailed bio. Voted up!


safiq ali patel profile image

safiq ali patel 3 years ago from United States Of America

@ Vinaye You could write a hub on what the Swastika means in Hindu Culture. I'd be interested in reading the hub to find out more...


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal Author

@Billy, your interpretation on Hitler is really interesting. Thanks for sharing your view.

@ImKarn, I find Hitler's character interesting because he is a perfect example about how a man can fool the entire world. The western world noticed how dangerous Hitler was only when he attacked Poland. Thanks for sharing your opinion.

@Mhatter, thanks for sharing youe experience.

@fpherj, I believe every generation has to learn about Hitler so that no Hitler is produced again. Thanks for reading and commenting.

@mckbirdbks, I believe Hitler cannot be compared with any tyrant, he is unmatched in human history.

@radha, you are very true about the presence of nazi beliefs in our societies. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

@tillsontitan, thanks for reading closely and leaving very engaging comment. Hitler fooled the entire Germany, even the America was fascinated by Hitler for a while.

@always exploring, Hitler has also been my subject of interest since I was young. Thanks for appreciating my work.

@Gypsy Rose, I'm glad that you found this interesting.

@nisargmetha, I'm glad that I was able to give everything you wanted to know about Hitler.

@ausfanani, that's very true. Thanks for stopping by.

@safiq, Swastika is actually Hindu symbol, which Hitler used as his emblem.


safiq ali patel profile image

safiq ali patel 3 years ago from United States Of America

Vinayah G. Great hub. Some interesting detail here for people who want to know more about Adolf Hitler.

You mention that some of Hitler's publications are still available in India. I noticed that in rural India some people still display a sign that looks like Swastika over their doors. In India they say the symbol is a sign of luck and karma...


agusfanani profile image

agusfanani 3 years ago from Indonesia

A very interesting story. There are lessons from Hitler's leadership that the world must learn.


nisargmehta profile image

nisargmehta 3 years ago from SURAT, Gujarat, India

It is Awesome..!!! Very detailed and yet organized..!!! Almost everything I wanted to know about Herr Fuhrer.. Thank you.. [Smiles]


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 3 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Thanks for this very interesting and fascinating hub. Great videos. Lots I didn't know. Passing this on.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 3 years ago from Southern Illinois

I have always had a keen interest in Adolf Hitler..The book, ' The rise and fall of Adolf Hitler ' is a book about his life and is very chilling, such an evil man. How could people just walk past a dead body lying on the street? Thank you for your research. You are a great writer..


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 3 years ago from New York

This is a remarkable hub Vinaya. You have included so much information. Perhaps Hitler's early childhood and beginnings of a slightly twisted personality...the death of his brother causing his withdrawal, his conflict with his father and his obsession with German Nationalism....would have been looked at in a better society?

Sadly, the German people thought he was a god. They weren't aware (or closed their eyes) to what he was doing but thought he was good for Germany (I heard this first-hand from a German citizen under his rule who later moved to the US.)

Well done! Voted up, awesome, and interesting.


radhapriestess profile image

radhapriestess 3 years ago from Minneapolis, MN

Thank for you showing us a little more about Hitler, the man himself. It is good to study a terrorist like him to see what happened to him to make him the way he was. He was without family it seems when he came to power. He was unemployed and desparate, too. Recent studies on terrorists are interesting. They say the common demoninator is they are unemployed and in desparate straights. One wonders what would have happened if he had been accepted as an artist. Would we have avoided a terrible war? I took a course in college on Hitler's Germany. The nazi philosophy is, unfortunately, still very much with us. I remember as a college student seeing them around. They put their marks on synongogues, etc.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 3 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Vinaya, this is a departure from your usual subjects. Hitler was one of the worst criminals in history. Thanks for your efforts in bringing some facts to light.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Vinaya.....An intriguing and well-researched body of work on A. Hitler....Extremely in-depth background, of so much I did not know about this man.

His very name strikes fear and horror, to this day. Pure Evil, is all I think, when I hear his name and remember his reign of terror.

You did a superb job on this, Vinaya...UP+++


Mhatter99 profile image

Mhatter99 3 years ago from San Francisco

Thank you for this. My mother was a product of Hitler's brainwashing machine. It was amazing/unreal.


ImKarn23 profile image

ImKarn23 3 years ago

Excellent collection of facts about hitler's life and times..The second world war has always held interest for me - on too many levels to count - one of which being psychological..

i ordered mein kampf and waited 6 weeks to get it - read bits and pieces of it and after about a year -- actually threw it away! There wasn't a night that went by that i didn't feel...spooked...dirty even...in the end - i threw a book out for the first and only time..

btw - there were a shitload more killed than 11 million!

Hitler and others like him (and those that feared him) managed to eliminate closer to 30 million - about 20 million in gypsies, ukrainians, poles.czechs..the sick, the physically or mentally impaired or infirm, the weak, the old...etc, etc..anything that didn't fit into his idea of 'the master race' - which - if given opportunity - the scope would have narrowed and narrowed - and narrowed again..

Thank god he made the strategic error of dividing his troops and invading russia in the wintertime cause - up till then....


billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

Great bio Vinaya! Hitler was the wrong man at the right time. When the country needed a leader, and was desperate, they chose evil. Fascinating time in history.

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