(02.11.1859 - 17.03.1936)
place of birth: Schlitz, Osthessen (Hesse)
Prussian general officer Karl Dieffenbach commanded
the Germany's IX. Reserve Corps during the Great War. For his
actions and leadership during the Battle of Arras, General
Dieffenbach was awarded the Blue Max in April 1917.
Karl Dieffenbach was born into the home of theologian and poet
Georg Christian Dieffenbach. He entered military service in 1879 and
enjoyed a typical peacetime career progression, with training at
the Prussian Military Academy and a couple tours with Great General Staff.
At the rank of major, Dieffenbach was appointed in 1904 as commander of the
Military School at Neiße, Silesia.
Dieffenbach was a brigade commander leading up to German
mobilization in 1914, and on 2 August he lead 22nd Infantry Division
into battle at the siege of Namur. The division was soon thereafter
transferred to fight on the Eastern Front, where it remained on the
move for the ensuing months. With the 1916 Brusilov Offensive getting underway in
eastern Galicia, Dieffenbach's troops formed part of Angriffs-Gruppe
von der Marwitz. The formation withdrew between Lipa and
Styr in late July and, as they held their position, General
Dieffenbach's division incorporated two additional Austro-Hungarian
divisions to form Korps Dieffenbach.
General Dieffenbach was in charge of VIII. Army Corps from late
December 1916 to March 1917, at which point he received a transfer to
lead IX. Reserve Corps at Ypres and the Battle at Arras.
For his leadership here, Dieffenbach was awarded the Pour le Merite
in April 1917. His troops remained in action in Flanders until
demobilization in early November 1918. Generalleutnant Dieffenbach
retired from active duty in May of the following year and was brevetted
as General der Infanterie in July.