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  • Cited by 6
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
May 2017
Print publication year:
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Book description

This is a major new history of the British army during the Great War written by three leading military historians. Ian Beckett, Timothy Bowman and Mark Connelly survey operations on the Western Front and throughout the rest of the world as well as the army's social history, pre-war and wartime planning and strategy, the maintenance of discipline and morale and the lasting legacy of the First World War on the army's development. They assess the strengths and weaknesses of the army between 1914 and 1918, engaging with key debates around the adequacy of British generalship and whether or not there was a significant 'learning curve' in terms of the development of operational art during the course of the war. Their findings show how, despite limitations of initiative and innovation amongst the high command, the British army did succeed in developing the effective combined arms warfare necessary for victory in 1918.


'Written by three scholars at the top of their game, The British Army and the First World War is a timely analysis, an invaluable work of reference, and a stimulus for further study.'

Edward M. Spiers - University of Leeds

'The elegantly-crafted and crisply-written outcome of the combined knowledge and expertise of three renowned historians of British military culture, this book is an event in historical studies of the First World War. Both rich in scope and rigorously tight in its probing analyses and many salty judgements, it opens a commanding door on the character and conduct of the British Army, especially in the theatre of the war which mattered most - Europe.'

Bill Nasson - University of Stellenbosch, South Africa

'… a very well written, measured account of high quality. At the price, the paperback is an essential purchase.'

Source: The Society of Friends of the National Army Museum Book Review Supplement

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  • 10 - The Western Front, 1918
    pp 345-388


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