Books: More Blood, Less Iron

BISMARCK by Werner Richter. 420 pages. Putnam. $6.95.

He was a chub-cheeked country boy, with sly blue eyes, reddish-blond hair and a face, as he described it, "like a young girl with a bit of a moustache." Such was the appearance of the greatest German of his time. Otto von Bismarck made Prussia dominant in Germany and Germany dominant in Europe. He has inspired a shelf of biographies but remains essentially a riddle. Was he a selfless hero or a scheming tyrant?

Bismarck was quite a bit of both but, above all, a much misjudged figure, argues Werner Richter, a German biographer who...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!