The First World War caused suffering on a scale that had not been seen before.
Advancements in technological and industrial sophistication wreaked unexpected devastation on armies using outmoded tactics from an earlier time.
“In Flanders Fields” is a war poem written by Canadian physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae that immortalized the poppy as a symbol of Remembrance.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
Samuel Barber’s haunting Adagio for Strings brings home the immense sadness of a world at war.
Infantry from the 2nd Battalion, Auckland Regiment, New Zealand Division in the Switch Line near Flers, taken some time in September 1916, after the Battle of Flers-Courcelette.
A ration party of the Royal Irish Rifles in a communication trench during the Battle of the Somme
A German prisoner helps British wounded make their way to a dressing station near Bernafay Wood following fighting on Bazentin Ridge, 19 July 1916, during the Battle of the Somme.
Gathering the wounded
Soldiers of an Australian 4th Division field artillery brigade on a duckboard track passing through Chateau Wood, near Hooge in the Ypres salient, 29 October 1917
British soldiers haul an 18 pdr field gun out of the mud near Zillebeke.
‘Man in the mud’ sculpture in the Australian War Memorial. Adapted from image by Nick-D.
Troops ‘going over the top’ at the start of the Battle of the Somme in 1916.
Soldiers drill in their gas masks during World War I
Men of the 12th Royal Scots wear respirators during a gas attack on a front line trench, Meteren.
British 55th (West Lancashire) Division troops blinded by tear gas await treatment 10 April 1918, part of the German offensive in Flanders.
Members of the 6th Battalion in August 1918 near Lihons during the Battle of Amiens.
Stretcher bearers struggle in mud up to their knees to carry a wounded man to safety near Boesinghe on 1 August 1917 during the Third Battle of Ypres.
‘The Response’, World War I Memorial, Barras Bridge
Wytschaete Military Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery war cross
Tyne Cot cemetery, the largest cemetery for Commonwealth forces in the world, for WW1. The ‘Cross of Sacrifice’ can be seen in the background.
Ossuary of Douaumont, Verdun, France
Lafayette Escadrille memorial in Marnes-la-Coquette, France. During World War I, it was a French Air Service squadron comprised largely of volunteer American fighter pilots
National WWI Museum and Memorial, Kansas City, Missouri
Graves in the Thiepval Anglo-French Cemetery, seen with the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, Thiepval, France.
Poppies Field in Flanders.
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The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I; Barbara W. Tuchman’s Great War Series (Modern Library 100 Best Nonfiction Books)
In this landmark, Pulitzer Prize–winning account, renowned historian Barbara W. Tuchman re-creates the first month of World War I: thirty days in the summer of 1914 that determined the course of the conflict, the century, and ultimately our present world.
“A fine demonstration that with sufficient art rather specialized history can be raised to the level of literature.”—The New York Times.
“[The Guns of August] has a vitality that transcends its narrative virtues, which are considerable, and its feel for characterizations, which is excellent.”—The Wall Street Journal.
“More dramatic than fiction . . . a magnificent narrative—beautifully organized, elegantly phrased, skillfully paced and sustained.”—Chicago Tribune.
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