On Tuesday 14th July Dr. M. Yovanovitch, the Serbian Chargé d’Affaires at Berlin, telegraphed to Nikola Pašić, the Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister for Foreign Affairs:
The Secretary of State has told me that he could not understand the provocative attitude of the Serbian press and the attacks made by it against Austria-Hungary, who, as a Great Power, could not tolerate such proceedings.
In 1914, today was Miroslav Krleža’s 21st birthday. He was born in Zagreb, at that time part of the Austro-Hungarian empire, and had been educated for a career as an officer in Pécs and then at the Ludoviceum military academy in Budapest. In 1912, he had defected to Serbia, with a view to enrolling in the Serbian army, but he had been turned away as a suspected spy. On his return to Austro-Hungary, he was demoted in their army and served on the Eastern Front as a common soldier throughout the war. His career as a writer in his native language, Croatian, was to win him both the Herder Prize and the Laureate of the International Botev Prize.
In debate in the House of Commons on Tuesday 7th July, Captain Walter Faber was asking questions about army recruitment of the Liberal Secretary of State for War, H. H. Asquith, who was also the Prime Minister. The questions were answered by the Under-Secretary of State for War, Harold Tennant, MP for Berwickshire.
Because the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, had been married morganatically – it was forbidden for Habsburg heir to marry anyone who was not a member of one of the reigning families of Europe – Ferdinand had known that his wife could not be buried with him in the Imperial Crypt in Vienna. He had built a family tomb at his private residence, Schloss Artstetten near the Danube, so that they could be buried together. The last funeral and internment took place on Saturday 4th July: their three children were present.
On Friday 3rd July, the open coffins of Franz Ferdinand and Sophie lay in state at the Court Chapel from eight in the morning til noon. It’s reported that fifty thousand people attempted to view the bodies, but most were turned away due to the short period of time allowed.
At 4pm precisely the Emperor Franz Joseph, accompanied by Habsburg Archdukes and Archduchesses, attended a short funeral ceremony in the Court Chapel, which was conducted by Cardinal Gustav Piffl, Archbishop of Vienna.
Joseph Chamberlain died on 2nd July 1914, aged 77.
Joseph Chamberlain was a founder MP of the Liberal Unionist party, and had been Secretary of State for the Colonies under Conservative Prime Minister Arthur Balfour, from 1895 to 1903, during the Second Boer War in South Africa. In 1903 he had founded the Tariff Reform League, which campaigned to turn the whole British Empire into a tariff-free union to promote trade between the nations of the Empire. The Tariff Reform League was disbanded on the outbreak of WWI. Joseph was married twice and had two sons, both of whom entered politics: his younger son Neville was Prime Minister from 1937 to 1940.
Alberto Pollio, the chief of the Italian general staff, died early on Wednesday morning, 1st July 1914, in Turin, aged 62. He had entered the Naples military college in 1860, aged 8, and was first commissioned as a sub-lieutenant of artillery in 1870. He had written military histories of Waterloo and Custozza which had been widely translated and praised.
Lieutenant-General Pollio was an enthusiastic supporter of the Triple Alliance of 1882 between Italy, Germany, and Austria-Hungary, despite the historical enmity of the Austro-Hungarian Empire towards Italy.
On Tuesday 30th June 1914 the House of Commons had a routine sitting.
The Conservative MP for Knutsford, Alan Sykes, who had been commissioned a Deputy-Lieutenant to the Lord Lieutenant for Cheshire in 1910, rose to ask a question of the Under-Secretary of State for War about the Infantry Territorial battalions of Lancashire and Cheshire:
What percentage of the total enrolled number of officers and men of the Infantry Territorial battalions of Lancashire and Cheshire attended their annual camp this year in the Whitsuntide holidays, indicating what percentage attended for one week and what for the whole period, and giving comparative figures for the same battalions of their attendance at last year’s annual camp?
Harold Tennant, the Liberal Under-secretary of State for War, answered the Opposition question with specific percentages for 1914 and 1913, and said, when Sykes asked if the bounty of a pound had improved the attendance record:
It is impossible to give an answer yet as we have not had sufficient experience. I should not wonder if that had something to do with the result.