The great German assault on Verdun opened on 21 February 1916 and the battle went on with furious attacks and counterattacks till it finally petered out on 18 December, ten months later, some two and a half months longer than the British offensives of the Somme and Third Ypres combined. After describing the origins and conduct of the battle with maps and illustrations the book takes us on a tour of the town and of various parts of the battlefield with its numerous forts. There are two itineraries, one visits the right bank of the Meuse, with the forts of DOuaum,ont, Vaux and Souville the other the left bank and the bloody and sinisterly named hill called the ‘Mort Homme’ (“dead Man’). The Verdun battlefield still has today a sombre, even eerie atmosphere where no birds seem to sing. Casualty figures differ widely, but the French Official History gives 377,000 French casualties while the German figure is 337,000.
BYGONE PILGRIMAGE. VERDUN and the Battles for its Possession An Illustrated Guide to the Battlefields 1914-1918.
Postwar Michelin guide to one of the Great War’s bloodiest and most concentrated battlefields – Verdun in 1916 – perhaps the longest battle of all time in which the French reeled under the German attack, but then fought back.