In the turbulent history of modern Germany the name of Moltke has stood for military power and also enduring moral strength. At every major crisis in more than a century of German history the von Moltke family has played a critical role. The history of the family is thus a way of perceiving and assessing the history of modern Germany. For the Germany of the von Moltkes was also the Germany of Bismarck and Hitler, Wagner and Strauss, Nietzsche, Mann, and Brecht. Friedrich's vivid and knowledgeable style makes this an absorbing historical chronicle full of characters and events on a broad canvas along with personal histories, anecdotes, and gossip within and without the corridors of power.