From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Führer, meaning "leader" or "guide" in German, was a title granted by German Chancellor Adolf Hitler to himself by law following the death of Reichspräsident Paul von Hindenburg (president of the German Reich; Reich = empire) in 1934. The new position, fully named Führer und Reichskanzler (Leader and Reich Chancellor), formally made Hitler Germany's Head of State as well as Head of government (see also Gleichschaltung). It is modeled after its Italian equivalent 'il Duce', used by Benito Mussolini.
Hitler cultivated a personality cult about his role as leader, and was generally known as just Der Führer (The Leader). One of Hitler's most-repeated political slogans was "Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer" ("One people, one country, one leader").
Due to its excessive use in Nazi Germany, the term Führer has understandably gone out of fashion in modern Germany. The term Anführer, which means the same as Führer, is now mostly being used as a literal translation of "leader", while Führer itself is only used in composites, e.g. Lokführer or Zugführer (train driver), Bergführer (mountain guide), Führerschein (drivers licence), etc.
Other meanings: captain (e. g. team captain), guide (see above), headman, leader