March 1, 2020

March 1913 - Chronicles Of The Year Before The Great War

Reclining Nude by Gustav Klimt

March 1913. Last few days of the Winter Season. The Fed (aka Federal Reserve Bank) is founded. Funnily enough, this is a private venture, independent of Congress despite Congress having created it, and some of its biggest shareholders and members of this new system are "the banking houses Rothschild, Lazard, Warburg, Lehmann, Rockefellers Chase Manhattan and Goldman Sachs."

On the old continent, Gustav Klimt still paints in his studio. He likes to do so naked under his apron, "so that he can take it off quickly when desire overwhelms him and the pose of one of his models becomes too seductive for the man inside the painter." Virginia Woolf sends her first book, The Voyage Out, to her publisher (it will not be very successful when it comes out).

It is in March 1913, also, that Harry Graff Kessler meets the English queen at a big dinner hosted at the German Embassy in London. Queen Consort Mary, according to Kessler, "'looked reasonably good, in silver brocade with a crown of diamonds and big turquoise stones.'  Otherwise she was rather a trial: 'I couldn't leave her standing on her own, and she couldn't find a way out of the conversation, and you have to keep winding the poor thing up like a run-down watch, but that only works for thirty seconds at a time.' Incidentally, as he confides to his diary, there is no threat of war, or so he has heard: 'The European situation  has been completely reversed for a year and a half. The Russians and the French are forced to be peaceful, as they can no longer rely on England's support.'"

Source: Florian Illies's 1913 - The Year Before The Storm


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