28.04.

1918: The Death of the Assassin who Set Off World War I

1918: The Death of the Assassin who Set Off World War I
Photo Credit To Wikipedia commons/ Gavrilo Princip, seated in the middle of the first row, on trial on 5 December 1914

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 28 April 1918
  • Few people today are aware of the final fate of the famous Gavrilo Princip after he committed the fateful assassination in Sarajevo in 1914. It is interesting, for example, that Gavrilo Princip was only 19 years old at the time of the assassination.

The famous assassin Gavrilo Princip, who assassinated Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie in Sarajevo in 1914, died on this day.

This event led to the outbreak of the World War I. It is interesting that Gavrilo Princip was only 19 years old at the time of the assassination.

Gavrilo Princip was, of course, arrested by the police right at the scene. He and his associates were tried during that same year. Since Gavrilo Princip had not yet come of age under the law (adulthood legally started at 21 years of age), he could not be sentenced to death. Instead, he received the maximum sentence for his age – 20 years in prison.

Princip was imprisoned in Terezin fortress in the Czech Republic. This was a strong fortress built in the 18th century, which was named after Empress Maria Theresa. At the time of Austro-Hungarian Empire, political enemies such as Russophiles from Galicia and Bukovina (Eastern Europe) were imprisoned there.

Gavrilo Princip was kept in poor conditions, so that he contracted tuberculosis, and his weight dropped to only 40 kg. He died on this day in 1918, while World War I, which was caused by his shots, was still raging in Europe. He was only 23 years old at the time of his death.

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