Military Wiki
High Command of Coastal Defence
Stab eines Armeeoberkommandos.svg
Flag of the Staff of an Armee Oberkommando (1871–1918)
Active 15 April 1916 - 1 November 1918
Country  German Empire
Type Army
Engagements World War I

High Command of Coastal Defence (German language: Küstenverteidigung) was an army level command of the German Army in World War I. It served in Germany throughout its existence.


The High Command of Coastal Defence was set up on 14 April 1916, with Headquarters in Hamburg, to guard against the possibility of an attack on the German coast (North Sea or Baltic Sea) or mainland Denmark. Its task was to maintain the coastal defences in a state of combat readiness, and to assemble a defensive army if needed.[1] To this end, it took command of all Deputy[2] Corps Commanders bordering the sea (I Corps District, II Corps District, IX Corps District, X Corps District) and XVII Corps District. From September 1916, it also commanded those bordering the Netherlands (VII Corps District and VIII Corps District).

On 18 September 1918, the post of Supreme Commander was discontinued; on 1 November 1918, the High Command was taken off active status and was dissolved on 24 January 1919.


High Command of Coastal Defence had the following commanders during its existence:[3]

High Command of Coastal Defence
From Commander Previously Subsequently
15 April 1916 Generaloberst Ludwig von Falkenhausen Armee-Abteilung Falkenhausen 6th Army
29 August 1916 Generaloberst Josias von Heeringen 7th Army
19 September 1918 No commander


  • Armee-Abteilung or Army Detachment in the sense of "something detached from an Army". It is not under the command of an Army so is in itself a small Army.[4]
  • Armee-Gruppe or Army Group in the sense of a group within an Army and under its command, generally formed as a temporary measure for a specific task.
  • Heeresgruppe or Army Group in the sense of a number of armies under a single commander.


  1. Cron 2002, p. 82
  2. Cron 2002, p. 262 As the peacetime Corps Commanders were mobilised in August 1914, they each left behind a Deputy. The Deputy Corps Commanders (not to be confused with Reserve Corps Commanders) were responsible for keeping the peace in their area, maintain order and morale, and in procuring, training and despatching recruits to the field army.
  3. Cron 2002, p. 400
  4. Cron 2002, p. 84


  • Cron, Hermann (2002). Imperial German Army 1914-18: Organisation, Structure, Orders-of-Battle [first published: 1937]. Helion & Co. ISBN 1-874622-70-1. 
  • Ellis, John; Cox, Michael (1993). The World War I Databook. Aurum Press Ltd. ISBN 1-85410-766-6. 

This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).