This biography aims to illuminate the life of the statesman who unified Germany but who also embodied everything brutal and ruthless about Prussian culture. Jonathan Steinberg draws on contemporary writings, allowing Bismarck's friends and foes to tell the story. What rises from these pages is a complex giant of a man - a hypochondriac with the constitution of an ox, a tyrant who could easily shed tears, a convert to an extreme form of evangelical Protestantism who secularized schools and introduced civil divorce. Bismarck may have been in sheer ability a intelligent man that direct a great state in modern times. But all agreed there was also something demonic, diabolical, overwhelming, beyond human attributes, in Bismarck's personality. He was a kind of malign genius who, behind the various postures, concealed an ice-cold contempt for his fellow human beings and a drive to control and rule them. In this comprehensive biography - Jonathan Steinberg aims to bring Bismarck to life, revealing the stark contrast between the 'Iron Chancellor's' unmatched political skills and his profoundly flawed human character.