All About The First World War

The Great World War for Civilisation

The 4 August 2014 marked the 100 year anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War, aka World War I or The Great War for Civilisation. A hundred years might seem like a very long time ago, but it isn't really. Your great-great grandparents were around then, and they would have lived through, and maybe even taken part in, this conflict.



Why did the war start?


Lots of history books have been written on exactly this subject. But it all boils down to the fact that Europe had split into two large families of countries. The Allies — the British Empire, France, Belgium, Russia and later, the USA — were in one family. And the Central Powers of Germany, Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria and Turkey were in the other. On 4 August 1914, Germany invaded Belgium, and so, standing by its promise to stick up for Belgium, Britain declared war on Germany. The world was at war... 

 


How long did it last?


When the First World War began that summer, most people thought it would be over by Christmas. Many believed that Britain was so powerful it could win very quickly. In fact, the First World War lasted four terrible years, not four months.


The trenches of World War I


Trench life


By the winter of 1915, the opposing sides had both dug long ditches called trenches which faced each other, in some places just 30m apart! These lines of narrow trenches stretched from the Belgian coast to Switzerland, and were known as the Western Front. Over five million British soldiers spent time living in these muddy, miserable ditches, taking it in turns to be on the Front Line — the trench closest to the enemy.

Day-to-day life there was smelly and grim. There were millions of giant rats, overflowing latrines (loos) and terrible lice infestations. Not to mention the dead bodies. Every so often, soldiers on the Front Line would be instructed to leave their trench and venture into dangerous No Man’s Land (the area between the sides) to try to push back the enemy.




A new type of war


This war was very different from conflicts of the past. For the first time, powerful new weapons and vehicles were used - at sea, on land and in the air - resulting in many people being killed or wounded. In Britain, you could sometimes hear what sounded like thunder coming across the English Channel from Europe. In fact, it was the huge boom of big guns, called artillery, being fired on the Western Front. 75% of all men who died in the First World War were killed by artillery. 

The largest battle of the First World War - the Battle of the Somme - is known as one of the bloodiest battles in history. It was fought by the French and British against the Germans on both sides of the River Somme in France, and lasted for more than five months. Over a million men were killed or wounded, and it was the first time that a tank was used in combat. 


Big guns of World War I


It's all over


On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the First World War officially ended when an agreement (known as an armistice) was signed by Germany and the Allies. This date is known as Armistice Day, and is still commemorated each year when people wear paper poppies to remember those who fought and died in conflicts around the world - the pretty red flowers were the only things that grew on the bloody battlefields of Western Europe.


Poppy - the flower that grew in on the battlefields of WWI

Sadly, by the time the First World War was over, more than 18 million people had been killed worldwide. It was hoped it would be the war to end all wars. But this wasn’t to be the case. Just 21 years later, the Second World War broke out.




Your Comments

rachelangee
very nice
Masonlira
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Brytin
Helpful
Skslslslso
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Trivett
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#1Samantha walden
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Hiroyuki
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shark 10(tyler
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superblader
thanks for the info
Reffen
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glowup234
not fun boring
glowup234
that is not fun it was boring
CatherineP010365
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Aubrey11
That is so terribly sad. Pray for all the lost souls. Amen.
Sparkling water 123
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kopi
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charan
it is totally wrong
darryl hotdogdog
the stroy was cool
Davyon
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narwal
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narwal
gymnast , plus i love baby chickens
narwal
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darryl hotdogdog
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darryl hotdogdog
lol
darryl hotdogdog
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Claysomthing
I know many things about history and years of learning ww1 i enjoy this site. it is very cool.
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Claysomthing
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darryl hotdogdog
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icycool0
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Davyon
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LilacPetal
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Davyon
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darryl hotdogdog
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LilacPetal
hi
icycool0
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LilacPetal
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alhagie
coooooooool!!!!!
saylorwinkles
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Tilly poulter
very interesting and factual
A_j
Awesome!!!!
hussein
pathetic 18 millions died because of 1 man
hussein
pathetic 18 millions died because of one man
Laarman
Nice Info
sup123
hi
2345387_bgfh
good
AA1001169
More info. I feel like this is hardly anything.
Bobby_Joe
Cool!
ksa
lol
Bily
Really cool article.
lionphant
I didn't learn about the first world war fully! But now I know much more!
Lucy age 7
Oh my cool an I the oly one who can see this!!
12345678901234567890
Cool
madison4569871230
interesting.......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
snow
cool i love the information
snow
wow
Keren
I didn't know that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Angelo1512
Really helpful
Gideon tan
Cool
Alice270769
didn't really help soz
JoJo_22
I want to learn more!
KILLER4545
MY GRANDDAD FOUGHT THERE
KILLER4545
MY GREAT GRANDPA FOUGHT IN WORLD WAR 1
LexiJean
What did they play football with ?
bob
lol
Jammer7r8
I like the plane! I wanna fly it!
sahan
amazing
Juana
Ausome!
bobby_bom
m8 this is slick
eliphant8457
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Ryan Ellis
Epic
Coolcat61
I love it
Hale
cool
lion girl
love the facts helps me with my homework
issac_newton
i a sorry for the soldiers that fought in the first world war I hope they are remembered LEST WE FORGET
Frankenstien
It is sooo sad that many soldiers in the trenches were living in conditions as bad as that. But I thank them very much for saving us,and for making our future as good as it is.
Matilda Rennie
Awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sruthelaya
That was good history.It was sad that some men and fathers died
karategirl
cool
prema108
soooooo cool
Titan
Really good history. it's good they stopped fighting for a little bit.
Dr1Dray
it must have been horribile
mel
i love history . cool
samuel
cool and cool and cooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooollllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll
huskylover
I have no clue how they could like each other for a few days and then hate each other again. I like learning about the wars
Ted
Good
Kopiop
Thanks for information!
jude
so sad
ryann
cool
asherwav
it is so cool
maisy
I've leant a lot from this website its soooo cool
A6--3
Really good. I've always wanted to know more about world war 1
giraffe11
cool
Mr_Adam1234
Can you believe it, they fought and then stopped for christmas by two days and then fought again!!!!!!!!!!!
lol
good website
amelia
This is really interesting, I love how they all stopped fighting for a day or two (the truce) and decided to get along, sing together and even play football. It shows you how friendly people can be - even your enemies!
portugal
ITS NOT VERY NICE ONE BIT, ALL I CAN SAY IS IT WILL BE REMEMBERD!
szymon
The war wasn`t a very nice time to live.
Emma
Good
Cora
Really good learning facts!
Yassy
Cool facts!
bob
awesome
#swags
SICK!!!!!
Roseberryapple
Awesome, but i am learning about the celt's it grosses me out. I do play minecraft with my brother also i play AJ but some times i dilike AJ because of the lag, boredism and mean people on AJ.
yolo
That did you know is very odd and interesting.
Billy
cool info
Billy
cool info
Santiago
They called soccer football?
Adam
This taught me a lesson, not to be enemies.
cooltim2004
They are all cool facts about the first world war.
saul
i love animal jam but mine craft is good i like this website
anne
amazballs
callum
lol
naledi
history is good you can learn new things you did not know from a long time ago
IGHOST
Very intresting facts with puciation caption and fact points
John
Very interesting
luci
Thanks for the information
AKFLOF
it was intresting
hannah
this helped alot thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jackted
I learnt a lot about World War 1 today, I was surprised 9 out of 10 people survived.
Joe22
Why stop fighting I for a day when it can be evey day
zach
it rearly helped my brain!
NGKids-fan1234
this gave me sooooo much information on world war 1
ayan
it is astonishing
chloe
my topic is ww1 and I learned new things on this website I knew a lot already someone in my family fought in ww1 and ww2
farhan
i would not like to be in the war
Dillon
helped alot
Amina
I would not like to be in war
grace
i feel sorry for the family of people who died coz they would have been real upset
12345678910
Learnt about this at school but not this much! Must have been terrible
Amrit
I wouldn't like to be in the war.
Ignatius
Can't have been nice! We should remember :)
joshua
that is about the frest would war
123PAA456
i would have hated it if i had to live in these conditions:(
turtleshell1000
cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
cooooool
These facts are AMAAAAAAAAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
gamelover67810AJ
I like the fact that actully learning about this on NG kids is fun
Ria
It was nice that they played football at Christmas and stopped fighting.
PURPLEPIGS
Awesome information and very informative!!!!!!!!!!
sethie
great. Got a project about world war 1so AWSOME!
eliz
cool
Ava
very interesting i didn't know they played football on chrismas
Raven
So informative
skyblue
cool
sophia01928374655
AMAZING
calvin
this is great
Lena
Lovely facts
aaron2254
really informative i like it

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