Weimar: The Essence and Value of Democracy

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The 1918–19 revolution also abolished the last quasi-feudal servant statutes still in force in the countryside. These regulated the relationship between serving men or women and their masters. This relationship was an unequal one: servants had many duties, but few rights. For example, they could be dismissed without notice. If maids or farm hands did not turn up for work, their master could ask the police to round them up. Masters were also allowed to punish their servants physically.