Nazi Germany is the common English name for the period in German history from 1933 to 1945, when Germany was under the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler through the Nazi Party (NSDAP). Under Hitler's rule, Germany was transformed into a totalitarian state in which the Nazi Party controlled nearly all aspects of life. The official name of the state was Deutsches Reich ("German Reich") from 1933 to 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich ("Great-German Reich") from 1943 to 1945. The period is also known under the names the Third Reich (Drittes Reich, meaning "Third Realm" or "Third Empire", with the Holy Roman Empire and the German Empire being the first two) and the National Socialist Period (Zeit des Nationalsozialismus, abbreviated as NS-Zeit, literally "Time of National Socialism"). The Nazi regime ended after the Allied Powers defeated Germany in May 1945, ending World War II in Europe. Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany by the President of the Weimar Republic Paul von Hindenburg on 30 January 1933. The Nazi Party then began to eliminate all political opposition and consolidate its power. Hindenburg died on 2 August 1934 and Hitler became dictator of Germany by merging the offices and powers of the Chancellery and Presidency. A national referendum held 19 August 1934 confirmed Hitler as sole Führer (leader) of Germany. All power was centralised in Hitler's person and his word became above all laws.
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