Moritz Ferdinand Freiherr von Bissing
(30.01.1844 - 18.04.1917)
place of birth:  Ober Bellmansdorf, Oberschlesien  (Radzimow, Pol)
Königreich Preußen:  Generalgouverneur von Belgien; Generaloberst


Generaloberst Moritz Freiherr von Bissing was a Prussian cavalry officer who returned to active duty as Imperial Germany mobilized for the Great War. He initially served as Acting Commander of VII. Army Corps at its headquarters in Münster. From November 1914 to April 1917, Freiherr von Bissing functioned as the Empire's Governor-General in the occupied Brussels, Belgium. A chronic lung ailment forced him to give up his position in mid-April 1917, however, and he succumbed to his illness the following week.

Moritz von Bissing was born into the home of wealthy landowner, also named Moritz, and Dorothea Freiin von Gall. He married his Swiss wife, Myrrha Wesendonck, in 1872. This baron from Silesia was also known to be of a mean temperament, unafraid to give even the Kaiser a piece of his mind. Their eldest son Friedrich was a noted Egyptologist. After taking part in both the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 and the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71, young cavalry lieutenant von Bissing worked his way through the ranks and as a Major was assigned duty in 1887 as Crown Prince Wilhelm's personal adjutant. When Wilhelm II assumed the throne in 1888, Bissing continued service within the Kaiser's entourage as his aide-de-camp. He later commanded VII. Army Corps in Münster and retired from active duty in 1907, living in the Rettkau area (Kreis Glogau). As a civilian, he was a member of the Prussian House of Lords (Herrenhaus) in Berlin. 

Reactivated when Germany mobilized in the summer of 1914, General der Kavallerie von Bissing was sent to his former VII. Army Corps headquarters in Münster to maintain affairs on the home front for Commanding General Karl von Einem-Rothmaler. Freiherr von Bissing was transferred in November 1914 to head the Empire's General Governorate in Belgium. Promoted to Generaloberst in December, he then set about to involve himself in the internal politics of that country through the pursuit of Flamenpolitik. This was Germany's Flemish Policy which sought the dissolution of Belgium into the separate states of Wallonia and Flanders. During this time, von Bissing also gained notoriety for signing the death warrant for British nurse Edith Cavell. Generaloberst von Bissing died on 18 April 1917 in Trois Fontaines at the age of 73. Bissing was interred at the Invaliden-Friedhof in Berlin.

 
 
Generaloberst .................... 24.12.1914
 
 
 
 

  
 
Curriculum Vitae
   
11.10.1865 Sekonde-Lieutenant
15.06.1866 Der Deutsche Krieg von 1866   (participant in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866)
19.07.1870 Deutsch-Französischer Krieg von 1870–1871   (awarded Iron Cross during Franco-Prussian War)
16.11.1871 Premier-Lieutenant
01.06.1875 Rittmeister
00.00.1882 Husaren-Regiment ,,König Wilhelm I (1. Rheinisches) Nr. 7 - Bonn
00.00.1882 Großer Generalstab - Berlin
02.06.1883 Major
00.00.1887 Adjutant des Prinzen Wilhelm - Berlin  (Personal Adjutant to Prince Wilhelm)
15.06.1888 Diensttuender Flügelladjutant Seiner Majestät des Kaisers und Königs - Berlin  (Personal Adjutant to Wilhelm II)
19.06.1888 Oberst-Lieutenant
18.02.1889 Regiment der Gardes du Corps - Potsdam  (Cdr)
23.05.1890 Oberst
17.03.1893 Generalmajor
20.05.1893 4. Garde-Kavallerie-Brigade - Potsdam  (Cdr) 
01.09.1897 29. Infanterie-Division - Freiburg im Breisgau  (Cdr, replaced Ernst von Bülow)
10.09.1897 General-Lieutenant
18.05.1901 VIl. Armeekorps - Münster  (Cdr, replaced Ernst von Bülow)
27.01.1902 General der Kavallerie
00.12.1907 zur Disposition gestellt
   
Great War
   
02.08.1914 VII. Armeekorps - Stellvertrender KG  (Acting Cdr for Karl von Einem, VII. Corps HQ in Münster)
24.11.1914 Kaiserliche Deutsche Generalgouvernement Belgien - Brüssel  (Governor General in Belgium, replaced Graf von der Goltz)
24.12.1914 Generaloberst 
14.04.1917 außer Dienst
   
   
 

06.05.1914

 

 

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