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One Morning in Sarajevo: 28 June 1914


by David James Smith

Zweibund - the Dual Alliance - Germany and Austria-Hungary united, were the core of the Central Powers, and here join hands. The bars of Germany's flag border the top left, and those of the Habsburg Austrian Empire and ruling house the bottom right.
Text:
Schulter an Schulter
Untrennbar vereint
in Freud und in Leid!'

Shoulder to shoulder
Inseparably united 
in joy and in sorrow!

Zweibund - the Dual Alliance - Germany and Austria-Hungary united, were the core of the Central Powers, and here join hands. The bars of Germany's flag border the top left, and those of the Habsburg Austrian Empire and ruling house the bottom right.

The story of the successful plot that killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie told in a plodding style until the events overtake the author. The author traces the paths of the assassin Gavrilo Princip, his fellow plotters and would-be assassins, those who sheltered, fed and armed them on the way to and in Sarajevo, and their victims.

Princip longed for a Bosnia free of Austria-Hungary and a "union of south Slavs". He brought a determination his co-conspirators lacked to his grim task.

Nedjo Kerovic threw a bomb that bounced from the rear of the Archduke's auto into the street before exploding, injuring two in the following car and seven bystanders. The entourage continued to City Hall where the Lord Mayor welcomed the Archduke and the Austrian governor General Oskar Potiorek took responsibility for his safety.

The Archduke insisted on visiting the wounded in hospital, a change of plans his driver missed or misunderstood. In turning the wrong way and stopping to backup, he put the Archduke and his wife directly before Princip.

In life, the Archduke had married beneath his station. The Austrian court let neither him nor his wife forget it. In death, the court continued to treat them shabbily, uninviting heads of state from the funeral to be replaced by ambassadors.

Austria-Hungary brought twenty-five to trial, acquitting nine, sentencing three to be hung, and the rest to prison sentences of three to twenty years.

Publisher: Phoenix, an Imprint of Orion Books, Ltd., 2009

Copyright: David James Smith 2008