Talk:SS ranks

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Hello Matt, as a German who has studied history for many years in German and English I am surprised you translate Reich with state. Reich always means "empire". An empire is a "political unit" made up of several territories and peoples. An empire does not have to be ruled by a monarch. Hitler was Imperial Chancellor, Paul von Hindenburg Imperial President. The German Empire (2nd and third), as we understand it, existed from 1871 to 1945. Yes, the German empire was the "state of Germany" (especially after 1919), but Reich is not translated "state". All "Reichskanzler" saw themselves in the tradition of Otto von Bismarck. The German Reich existed after 1919 (= Weimar Republic was never the official name of the state). Compromise: When writing about the Deutsches Reich after 1919 we write German Reich? But anything connected to the Reich is "imperial". A Reichsführer is not state leader but imperial leader. Your opinion, please. --Crusader (talk) 16:14, 23 December 2021 (UTC)

I can only disagree. You cannot have an empire without an emperor. Do you know of one? In English, Reich is analogous to the meaning of the English word "realm". The terms Kaiserreich (literally the "realm of an emperor") and Königreich (literally the "realm of a king") are respectively used in German in reference to empires and kingdoms. In the English language the German Empires of the past were called the first and second Reich. However the second Reich ended in November 1918 with the abdication/revolution. The German Republic was a State, not an continuing empire. I have come across these discussions elsewhere and some have argued that Reich, in English, is interchangeable between Empire and State. As a published historian and lecturer I would suggest that I have never come across anyone calling Weimar Germany an "Empire". It was a State. The useage of the term Third Reich was used by snearing and insulting Allied propaganda. Matt58 (talk) 16:52, 23 December 2021 (UTC)
Yes, I know one, the Roman Empire, even in the many years as a republic. Yes, Weimar was a state, with the official name "Deutsches Reich" (German Realm?). Surely not ONLY propaganda, there is of course Arthur Moeller van den Bruck's book "Das dritte Reich" (1922). Never before have I read "Hitler was State Chancellor". Maybe we shouldn't translate Reichskanzler? --Crusader (talk) 17:15, 23 December 2021 (UTC)
In a way you have proved me correct as van den Bruck was talking about a future. He died in 1925. Obviously he was not saying that Weimar was the Third Empire (as you are) but that it was to come. If Weimar was the Third Reich then 1938-45 must be the Fourth Reich.Matt58 (talk) 12:40, 26 December 2021 (UTC)
No, Weimar was called "Deutsches Reich", German Empire or Realm, as you surely know, but it was never an empire in the sense of political might, as Moeller van den Bruck wrote. It was, as a state form, a republic. --Crusader (talk) 00:30, 29 December 2021 (UTC)