In 1919, John Maynard Keynes participated in the negotiations of World War I's armistice at the Versailles Peace Conference. A senior Treasury official with the British delegation, Keynes strongly disagreed with terms of reparation imposed on Germany, arguing that German impoverishment would threaten all of Europe. Indeed, the imposition of an economic burden that Germany could not pay led to the dismantling of the European market, famine, social unrest, and, ultimately, to World War II. The Economic Consequences of the Peace became an instant best-seller upon its initial publication, its controversial issues transforming Keynes into an overnight celebrity. Its real impact occurred several years later, when the wisdom of Keynes' reasoning was recognized at the close of World War II. The United States and Great Britain followed his advice and undertook an ambitious rebuilding program that paved the way for a solid democratic base in Germany, Italy, and Japan. In addition to its excellent economic analysis of reparations, this volume presents an insightful analysis of the Versailles conference's Council of Four (Georges Clemenceau of France, Prime Minister Lloyd George of Britain, President Woodrow Wilson of the United States, and Vittorio Orlando of Italy). A prophetic view of the European marketplace in the early twentieth century by a brilliant economist, this volume represents a much-studied landmark of economic theory.