territory for political and economic expansion: term used by Hitler as a euphemism for German expansionism
Origin of LebensraumGer, literally , living space
- Additional territory deemed necessary to a nation, especially Nazi Germany, for its continued existence or economic well-being.
- Adequate space in which to live, develop, or function.
Origin of lebensraumGerman Lebens genitive sing. of Leben life ( from Middle High German) ( from Old High German lebēn ; see leip- in Indo-European roots.) Raum space ( from Middle High German roum ) ( from Old High German rūm ; see reuə- in Indo-European roots.)
A generalised use of Lebensraum.
- (in German history from the mid-nineteenth to mid-twentieth Centuries) Territories considered appropriate for German annexation, regarded as vital for the natural flourishing of the German race:
- (in early usage) an empire in the form of overseas colonies, in imitation of contemporary powers such as Britain and France.
- (in later usage) a GroÃŸdeutschland obtained through Endoeuropean expansion, usually with a focus upon Drang nach Osten, and varying in its scope from the comparatively modest annexation of the Polish Border Strip to overlordship of the European continent by the conquest of Russian lands as far as the Urals.
From the German Lebensraum (“living space"), from Lebens (“of life") (the genitive of Leben (“life")) + Raum (“space").