Scheidemann, Philipp (fēˈlĭp shĪˈdəmän) [key], 1865–1939, German Social Democratic leader. A member of the Reichstag from 1898, he became (1918) secretary of state without portfolio in the cabinet formed by Maximilian, prince of Baden just before Germany's defeat in World War I. After Emperor William II had fled (Nov., 1918), Scheidemann proclaimed the German republic and served as its first chancellor. He resigned (1919) in protest over the Treaty of Versailles. With the rise of Nazism, he left Germany in 1933 and died in exile in Denmark.
See his memoirs, The Making of New Germany (tr. 1929, repr. 1970).