Toivo Mikael Kivimäki

Toivo Mikael Kivimäki (5 June 1886 – 6 May 1968), (J.D.), was a Finnish politician of the National Progressive Party who served as the head of the department of civil law at Helsinki University 1931–1956, Prime Minister of Finland 1932–1936, and Finland's Envoy to Berlin 1940–1944.[2]

Toivo Mikael Kivimäki
Toivo Kivimäki.png
13th Prime Minister of Finland[1]
In office
14 December 1932 – 7 October 1936
PresidentPehr Evind Svinhufvud
Preceded byJuho Sunila
Succeeded byKyösti Kallio
Minister of Justice
In office
21 March 1931 – 14 December 1932
Prime MinisterJuho Sunila
Preceded byKarl Söderholm
Succeeded byHugo Malmberg
Minister of the Interior
In office
22 December 1928 – 16 August 1929
Prime MinisterOskari Mantere
Preceded byMatti Aura
Succeeded byArvo Linturi
Personal details
Born(1886-06-05)5 June 1886
Tarvasjoki, Finland
Died6 May 1968(1968-05-06) (aged 81)
Political partyNational Progressive

Early careerEdit

He was elected as member of the Parliament for terms 1922, 1924-1927 and 1929–1940. Before prime ministership, Kivimäki served as Minister of the Interior 1928-1929[3] and Minister of Justice 1931–1932.[4]

After WWIIEdit

In 1946, Kivimäki together with half-a-dozen other leading politicians were put on "war-responsibility trials" executed under pressure from the Allied victors in World War II. Kivimäki was sentenced to five years in prison after being found responsible for the Continuation War. After Finland signed the Paris Peace Treaties, 1947, and the Finno–Soviet Agreement of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance, 1948, the international situation was deemed somewhat stabilized, and Kivimäki was pardoned. He returned to his career in academia.


As with all politicians connected with the Continuation War, Kivimäki was for decades seen in a somewhat critical light. During the era of finlandization, many prominent Finns expressed themselves cautiously on such subjects in order not to disturb sensitive Allied victors of the war; a cautiousness that without doubt influenced Finland's post-war generation's understanding and views.

  • As Prime Minister, Kivimäki headed Finland's (until 1987) most long-lived cabinet, aiming at stabilizing the turbulent politics in Finland after the semi-fascist Mäntsälä Rebellion had been put down.
  • He achieved the reversal of Finland's foreign policy into a neutralist pro-Scandinavian stance, and a Swedish rapprochement, that may well have been prepared for in the most initiated circles, but that in the contemporary tense phase of the language strife in Finland was not at all easy to explain to the public opinion.
  • As an Envoy to the Third Reich, Kivimäki was in a position to observe the anti-Semitic nature of the Nazi regime and the disappearance of German Jews to concentration camps. Kivimäki succeeded in reversing Nazi Germany's anti-Finnish stance, obtaining support and favours but at the price of Finland having to form an alliance with Hitler. Finland avoided formal treaties with Nazi Germany up until the Ryti-Ribbentrop Agreement, which was signed after the fall of Viipuri in June 1944.

Several individuals and factors were critical for the Winter War and the Continuation War. Kivimäki without any doubt occupies a prominent position among pro-Axis Finnish leaders.



  1. ^ "Governments in chronological order". Finnish government (Valtioneuvosto). Retrieved 27 March 2017.
  2. ^ "Ministerikortisto". Valtioneuvosto.[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ "Council of State - Ministers of Interior". Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  4. ^ "Council of State - Ministers of Justice". Retrieved 27 December 2017.
Political offices
Preceded by
Juho Sunila
Prime Minister of Finland
Succeeded by
Kyösti Kallio
Preceded by
Karl Söderholm
Minister of Justice
Succeeded by
Hugo Malmberg
Preceded by
Matti Aura
Minister of the Interior
Succeeded by
Arvo Linturi