Portal:World War I

The World War I portal

The badly shelled main road to Bapaume.jpg

World War I (abbreviated WWI), also known as the First World War, the Great War and The War to End all Wars was a global military conflict that took place mostly in Europe between 1914 and 1918. The main combatants were the Allied Powers, led by France, the Russian Empire, the British Empire, Serbia, Belgium, and later Italy, Romania and the United States, who fought against the Central Powers: Austria-Hungary, the German Empire, Bulgaria, and the Ottoman Empire (present day Turkey).

Much of the fighting in World War I took place along the Western Front, within a system of opposing manned trenches and fortifications (separated by a "no man's land") running from the North Sea to the border of Switzerland. On the Eastern Front, the vast eastern plains and limited rail network prevented a trench warfare stalemate from developing, although the scale of the conflict was just as large. Hostilities also occurred on and under the sea and — for the first time — in the air. More than nine million soldiers died on the various battlefields, and millions more civilians perished.

The war caused the disintegration of four empires: the Austro-Hungarian, German, Ottoman, and Russian. Germany lost its overseas empire, and states such as Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia were created, or recreated, as in the cases of Lithuania and Poland. This contributed to a decisive break with the world order that had emerged after the Napoleonic Wars, which was modified by the mid-19th century’s nationalistic revolutions. The results of World War I would also be important factors in the development of World War II just over two decades later.

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The Battle of Tannenberg in 1914 was a decisive engagement between the Russian Empire and the German Empire in the first days of The Great War, fought by the Russian First and Second Armies and the German Eighth Army between August 17 and September 2, 1914. The battle resulted in the almost complete destruction of the Russian Second Army. A series of follow-up battles kept the Russians off-balance until the spring of 1915. The battle is notable particularly for a number of rapid movements of complete corps by train, allowing the single German Army to present a single front to both Russian Armies.


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Poison gas attack.jpg

The use of poison gas in World War I was a major military innovation. The gases used ranged from disabling chemicals such as tear gas and the more severe, mustard gas to killing agents like phosgene. This chemical warfare was a major component of the first global war and first total war of the 20th century. The killing capacity of gas was limited — only 3% of combat deaths were due to gas — however, the proportion of non-fatal casualties was high and gas remained one of the soldiers' greatest fears. In that it was possible to develop effective countermeasures to gas, it was unlike most other weapons of the period. Hence in the later stages of the war as the use of gas increased, in many cases its effectiveness was diminished. This widespread use of these agents of chemical warfare, and wartime advances in the composition of high explosives, gave rise to an occasionally expressed view of World War I as "the chemists' war".


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"It must be a peace without victory...Victory would mean peace forced upon the loser, a victor's terms imposed upon the vanquished. It would be accepted in humiliation, under duress, at an intolerable sacrifice, and would leave a sting, a resentment, a bitter memory upon which terms of peace would rest, not permanently, but only as upon quicksand. Only a peace between equals can last."
Woodrow Wilson, 22 January 1917

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W Beach Helles Gallipoli.jpg

The evacuation of W Beach, Helles, on 7 January, 1916.

Photo cr: Lt. Ernest Brooks.

Selected biography


Gavrilo Princip (Serbian Cyrillic: Гаврило Принцип) (pronounced (gäv´ri:lo: pri:n´tsip) (July 25, 1894 – April 28, 1918) was a Serb member of the Young Bosnia secret society who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg in Sarajevo on June 28, 1914. The event, known as the assassination in Sarajevo, prompted the Austrian action against Serbia that led to World War I. He is sometimes nicknamed "The Man That Started World War I". Having been too young at the time of the assassination (19) to face the death penalty, Princip received the maximum sentence of twenty years in prison, where he was held in harsh conditions worsened by the war. He died of tuberculosis on April 28, 1918 at Theresienstadt.


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Major topics

Theatres Main events Specific articles Participants See also

Sarajevo assassination
July Ultimatum

Main theatres:
Western Front
Eastern Front
Italian Front
Middle Eastern Theatre
Balkan Theatre
Atlantic Theatre

Other theatres:
African Theatre
Pacific Theatre

General timeline:
WWI timeline

German invasion of Belgium
Battle of Liège
Battle of Tannenberg
Invasion of Serbia
First Battle of the Marne
First Battle of Arras
Battle of Sarikamish
Mesopotamian campaign
Gallipoli Campaign
Italian Campaign
Conquest of Serbia
Battle of Verdun
Battle of the Somme
Battle of Jutland
Brusilov Offensive
Conquest of Romania
Great Arab Revolt
Capture of Baghdad
Second Battle of Arras
Battle of Passchendaele
Battle of Caporetto
Conquest of Palestine
Spring Offensive
Hundred Days Offensive
Meuse-Argonne Offensive
Armistice with Germany
Armistice with Ottoman Empire

Military engagements
Naval warfare
Air warfare
Poison gas
Trench warfare
Partition of Ottoman Empire

Civilian impact and atrocities:
Armenian Genocide
Assyrian genocide
Greek genocide

Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
Paris Peace Conference
Treaty of Versailles
Treaty of St. Germain
Treaty of Neuilly
Treaty of Trianon
Treaty of Sèvres
Treaty of Lausanne
League of Nations

Entente Powers
 Russian Empire
France French
 British Empire
  » United Kingdom United Kingdom
  » Australia Australia
  » Canada Canada
  »  India
  » New Zealand New Zealand
  »  South Africa
Kingdom of Italy Italy
Kingdom of Romania Romania
 United States
Kingdom of Serbia Serbia
Portugal Portugal
Republic of China (1912–1949) Republic of China
Empire of Japan Japan
Belgium Belgium
Greece Greece
Armenia Armenia

Central Powers
German Empire German Empire
 Ottoman Empire
Kingdom of Bulgaria Bulgaria

A war to end all wars
Female roles
Total war
Spanish flu

Contemporaneous conflicts:
First Balkan War (1912-13)
Second Balkan War (1913)
Maritz Rebellion (1914-15)
Easter Rising (1916)
Pancho Villa Expion (1916-17)
Russian Revolution (1917)
Russian Civil War (1917–21)
Finnish Civil War (1918)
North Russia Intervention (1918–19)
Greater Poland Uprising (1918–19)
Polish–Soviet War (1919-21)
Irish War of Independence also known as the Anglo-Irish War (1919–21)
Turkish War of Independence also known as the Greco-Turkish War (1919–22)
Irish Civil War (1922–23)

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From the World War I task force of the Military history WikiProject:

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Adriatic Campaign of World War IAtlantic U-boat campaign of World War IBalkans Campaign (World War I)Battle of Belleau WoodBattle of Chunuk BairBattle of Gully RavineBattle of PozièresBattle of Sari BairEastern Front (World War I)Italian Front (World War I)Robert NivelleSerbian Campaign of World War ISouth-West Africa CampaignLanding at Suvla BayMax von Boehn (General)Johannes von EbenNaval operations in the Dardanelles CampaignNaval warfare in the Merranean during World War I
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Bombardment of SamogneuxSrem offensive (1914)Otto von Lauenstein deGeorg Fuchs (General) deGötz von König deBlack Sea Campaign (World War I)Battle of Augustów (1914)Battle of the NeteBattle of MusallaBattle of Qasr-i-ShirinBattle of QomBattle of HamadanOccupation of TabrizAffair of Umm at TubalBattle of al-SamnBattle of NamacurraMakombe rebellionBarue uprising
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Asian and Pacific theatre of World War IBattle of BehobehoBattle of Cambrai (1918)Battle of CaporettoBattle of Courtrai (1918)Battle of DodomaBattle of DutumiBattle of KaheBattle of Kiawe BridgeBattle of Kibata (1916)Battle of Kibata (1917)Battle of KidodiBattle of KilosaBattle of KimbarambaBattle of Krithia VineyardBattle of LukiguraBattle of MpotonaBattle of NambanjeBattle of MahiwaBattle of MatamondoBattle of MlaliBattle of MorogoroBattle of MkalamoBattle of Mouquet FarmBattle of NarungombeBattle of the NekBattle of NjinjoOccupation of German SamoaBattle of RamadiBattle of RumboSamarrah OffensiveBattle of Scimitar HillBattle of SharqatBattle of St. Quentin CanalBattle of UteteBattle of WamiBattle of the WazzirDemilitarisationFirst Battle of Villers-BretonneuxSecond Battle of KrithiaSecond Battle of KutSecond Battle of the IsonzoThird Battle of KrithiaThird Battle of the IsonzoFifth Battle of the IsonzoSeventh Battle of the IsonzoNinth Battle of the IsonzoTenth Battle of the IsonzoOperation Marne-RheimsJoseph B. SanbornRobert Kosch de
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Schlacht in den Karpaten (Large battle in the Carpathians)

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