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Alexander von Krobatin

alexander krobatin
Alexander Freiherr von Krobatin 12 September 1849 – 28 September 1933 was an Austrian Field Marshal and Imperial Minister for War between 1912 and 19171


  • 1 Early life
  • 2 Imperial War Minister
  • 3 Field Commander
  • 4 Retirement
  • 5 Service record
  • 6 Notes
  • 7 Sources

Early lifeedit

Born in Olmütz Olomouc,2 Moravia, Krobatin graduated from the Artillery Academy in 1869 before spending a number of years studying the place of artillery in late 19th century warfare He served as an instructor at the Technical Military Academy from 1877 to 1882 and recognized as an expert in munitions, he was appointed to the War Ministry in 1896 where he successful worked as a head of department and as chief of a section while also promoted to the rank of Major General in 19003

Imperial War Ministeredit

A close associate of the army chief of staff Conrad Hötzendorf, Krobatin was appointed Imperial Minister for War in 1912 and as an integral member of the "war party" gave his full backing to the hawkish element in the military in their calls for an immediate attack on Serbia following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and the July Ultimatum3 With the outbreak of war, Krobatin was responsible for the task of harnessing the economies of industrial Austria and agrarian Hungary to ensure the now mobilised military was supplied with vital arms and munitions as well as increasing industrial efficiency to meet the needs of a state with a large cohort of its industrial population no longer available for industrial and food production given their enlistment for war4 According to a number of sources, Krobatin struggled in his task for the first two years of the war, and although he never really threatened to harness the economy efficiently, he succeeded in tripling the level of artillery available at divisional level3

One of the first commanders to be raised to the newly created rank of Generaloberst in February 1916,5 Krobatin was responsible for dealing with the crisis caused by Romania's entry into the war on the side of the Entente and the sudden cutting off of resources particularly grain and petroleum that Romania's declaration of war brought In Crown council on September 9, 1916, Krobatin sought backing for a proposal which would have allowed the army unrestricted powers to seize foodstuffs and punish hoarders, but this was vetoed by Chancellor Karl Stürgkh and Premier Istvan Tisza Though occupied Serbia was eventually to produce more grain than Romania, food supplies to soldiers in the field remained a persistent and crucial worry to those at the higher echelons of the War Ministry5

Field Commanderedit

With Conrad's dismissal in March 1917, Krobatin was left isolated in the Crown Council and he was relieved of his tenure over the war ministry in April to be handed command of the Tenth army1 It was as a field commander that Krobatin was most successful Following his role at the Battle of Caporetto in October 1917, during which his force captured two Italian divisions, he was promoted to Field Marshal on November 5, 1917 Redeployed to form part of Archduke Josef's strike force in Tyrol, Krobatin was given command of the entire Tyrol sector following the failure of the Piave Offensive and the Archduke's flight from the front in the face of mutinies on October 26, 19184


Following the rejection of his offer of an armistice to the Italians on October 31, the battered remains of his armies were overrun at Vittorio Veneto a few days latter3

Krobatin retired immediately after the close of the war and was never again to hold a commission He was an Honorary Doctor of Technical Science at the Vienna Technical Institute, Honorary President of the Kaiser Karl War Welfare Fund, and an honorary member of the "Viribus Unitis" Vienna Riding Association5 Krobatin died in Vienna in 1933

Service recordedit

von Krobatin left in 1915
  • 1865 - Attends Artillerieakademie until 1869
  • 1869 - Promoted to Leutnant
  • 1873 - Promoted to Oberleutnant
  • 1879 - Promoted to Hauptmann 2 Kl
  • 1882 - Promoted to Hauptmann 1 Kl
  • 1877 - Attends the Technisch Militarisch Akademie until 1885
  • 1885 - Truppendienst until 1890
  • 1889 - Promoted to Major
  • 1890 - Head of the Artillery Kadett Schule until 1895
  • 1892 - Promoted to Oberstleutnant
  • 1895 - Promoted to Oberst
  • 1895 - Commander of Korps Artillery Regiment 1
  • 1896 - Head of 7 Section of the RKM until 1904
  • 1900 - Promoted to Generalmajor
  • 1904 - Sections Chief im RKM until 1912
  • 1905 - Promoted to Feldmarschalleutnant
  • 1910 - Promoted to Feldzeugmeister
  • 1912 - kuk Minister of war until April 1917
  • 1916 - Promoted to Generaloberst
  • 1917 - Commands X Army until October 1918
  • 1917 - Promoted to Feldmarschall
  • 1918 - Commands Heeresgruppe Tirol until November 1918 5


Regarding personal names: Freiherr is a former title translated as Baron, which is now legally a part of the last name The feminine forms are Freifrau and Freiin


  1. ^ a b Pope, S & Wheal, EA1995: The Macmillan Dictionary of the First World War Macmillan: London
  2. ^ "ALEXANDER KROBATIN, FREIHERR VON" Classic Encyclopaedia Retrieved 2008-06-01 
  3. ^ a b c d "Alexander von Krobatin" Who's Who of the first world war Archived from the original on 12 May 2008 Retrieved 2008-06-01 
  4. ^ a b Pope, S & Wheal, EA 1995: The Macmillan Dictionary of the First World War Macmillan: London
  5. ^ a b c d "Alexander Freiherr von Krobatin" Austrian Commanders Archived from the original on 2009-10-25 Retrieved 2008-06-01 
Military offices
Preceded by
Moritz Ritter Auffenberg von Komarów
Imperial & Royal Minister for War
Succeeded by
Rudolf Stöger-Steiner Edler von Steinstätten

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