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Experiences of the Great War


When the First World War broke out, most of Europe's youth were excited by the prospect of a glorious adventure that would be 'over by Christmas'.

However, by Christmas 1914, not only was the war not over but most of the first wave of British troops were dead or wounded.

The new kind of warfare, with its machine guns, heavy artillery, barbed wire, and poison gas, led to casualties on a scale previously unknown, and General Douglas Haig's diaries show that he was much preoccupied with the logistics of dealing with the dead and wounded.

Other experiences