Revered as the epitome of German militarism and moral decency, Field Marshal Paul von Hindenburg was one of the most popular and dominant figures of the Great War and of 20th - century Germany. Alongside Erich Ludendorff he secured a crucial victory over the Russians at Tannenberg before finding fame through a number of significant victories such as the Battle of the Masurian Lakes. Many argue that beneath his powerful facade was a weak-willed man who relied heavily on the advice of others to make decisions. Nevertheless he became a cult figure in Germany and wooden statues of him were built all over the country, onto which people nailed money and cheques for war bonds. After the war ended, von Hindenburg was persuaded to run for the office of President and, thanks to his war hero status, was elected in 1925. He remained in office until his death in August 1934. His memoirs, written in the immediate aftermath of the German defeat in 1918, provide compelling insights into German strategy and are essential reading for anyone interested in the First World War. This edition has been abridged and includes a new introduction by the renowned historian, Charles Messenger.