- Term Papers and Free Essays

World War One

Essay by 24  •  December 2, 2010  •  4,593 Words (19 Pages)  •  767 Views

Essay Preview: World War One

Report this essay
Page 1 of 19

Question and answer format of everything in world war 1

1. Machine guns: These weapons were first used in the American Civil War to devastating effect. But with World War One their effectiveness reached frightening new levels. Firing up to 600 bullets a minute (the equivalent of 250 men with rifles), Machine Guns were then deemed to be Ð''weapons of mass destruction'. Machine guns would often be grouped together to maintain a constant defensive position.

2. Artillery: These were the new and upgraded versions of cannons. Never in the history of man, where there so many cannons used in one war alone. For four years the British had been using artillery and firing 170 million shells in that time. But Germany had a plan up their sleeve. For years, German scientists were developing the biggest artillery ever known. It was call the Ð''Big Bertha'. Big Bertha was so powerful it could fire at the heart of Paris from 120 kilometres away. The cannons weren't the only things that had been improved. The shells were upgraded as well. Instead of ordinary shells, new High-explosive shells were developed. The Shells were thin casings and were filled with tiny lead pellets. This was so effective, that artillery fire killed hundreds and thousands of men. It also blew the ground, which made hiding much more difficult.

3. Gas Grenades: These were highly toxic and very effective weapons. The Germans had invented 3 main gas grenades. The first was Chlorine gas, which was used at the battle of Ypres in 1915, killing thousands. Second was Phosgene gas and third was Mustard gas. This burned the lungs of the inhaler leaving them to die in agony. Gas masks were issued to everyone in the country, but they weren't so useful and many people died.

4. Transportation: transportation greatly increased, as more troops were needed at battlefields and other places. British forces used everything from trains to lorries and even taxis. They transported 500 men in 1914; 250 taxis took the reserve troops to the Battle of Marne and thousands of lorries were used to transport troops to Verdun in 1916.

5. Communication: In 1914 both radios and telephones were the main ways of communication. These were very vital for the troops in trenches. However, that did not mean that messengers, dogs and pigeons were out of business.

6. Tanks: Tanks were known as Ð''The Chariots of God' at First, they were giant blocks of metal that could carry 1-2 personnel and travelled at about 5 kilometres per hour. But scientists and developers kept making new and improved tanks and by 1918 the Anglo-American Mark 8th could carry up to 8 men, and at the same time fire 208 shells and up to 13,000 bullets. Although these beasts were powerful, they were not so reliable. Most broke down and a good example is the battle of Amiens. The British sent 525 tanks, and after four days, only 25 were left in working order. Rolls Royce also joined in the development of these tanks, by building their own armoured car! It could travel up to 88 kilometres and had 8mm machine guns.

7. Planes: These were the new types of weapons use in advanced technological warfare. They had everything from mini scout planes to huge blimp like bombers called Zeppelins. Air warfare was not seen as important as any other type so it did not have its own category.

8. Naval Units: Naval ships were counted very important for some of the war. British specialised in Ships such as battleships, and the Germans specialised in Submarines

9. Rifles: Despite advances in machine gun, mortar and grenade technology, all remained relatively unwieldy and cumbersome in comparison to the rifle, which remained the most crucial, ever-present infantry weapon throughout World War One. The single-shot, bigger-bore rifle was the subject of extensive research and development in the latter portion of the nineteenth century, with the result that the major powers introduced new models that were small-bore, bolt-action weapons capable of firing multiple rounds from a spring-loaded clip inserted into a rifle magazine.

10. Flamethrower: The flamethrower, which brought terror to French and British soldiers when used by the German army in the early phases of the First World War in 1914 and 1915 (and which was quickly adopted by both) was by no means a particularly innovative weapon. The basic idea of a flamethrower is to spread fire by launching burning fuel. The earliest flamethrowers date as far back as the 5th century B.C. These took the form of lengthy tubes filled with burning solids (such as coal or sulphur), and which were used in the same way as blow-guns: by blowing into one end of the tube the solid material inside would be propelled towards the operator's enemies.

11. Trench Mortars: As with the grenade the mortar was yet another old weapon which found a new lease of life during World War One. A mortar is essentially a short, stumpy tube designed to fire a projectile at a steep angle (by definition higher than 45 degrees) so that it falls straight down on the enemy. From this simple description it will be immediately apparent that the mortar was ideally suited for trench warfare, hence the common application of the 'trench' prefix.

2. What is no man's land: No Man's Land is the term used by soldiers to describe the ground between the two opposing trenches. Its width along the Western Front could vary a great deal. The average distance in most sectors was about 250 yards (230 metres).

No Man's Land contained a considerable amount of barbed wire. In the areas most likely to be attacked, there were ten belts of barbed wire just before the front-line trenches. In some places the wire was more than a 100 feet (30 metres) deep.

If the area had seen a lot of action No Man's Land would be full of broken and abandoned military equipment. After an attack No Man's Land would also contain a large number of bodies. An advance across No Man's Land was always very difficult. Not only did the soldiers have to avoid being shot or blown-up, they also had to cope with barbed-wire and water-filled, shell-holes.

Soldiers were only occasionally involved in a full-scale attack across No Man's Land. However, men were sometimes ordered into No Man's Land to obtain information about the enemy. When a artillery shell had landed just in front of an enemy trench, soldiers were often ordered to take control of the shell-hole and to try and spy on the enemy.

3. How is gas used as a biological weapon in the great world war? What types of gas are used, and what are their effects? Considered uncivilized prior to World War one, the development and use of poison gas was necessitated by the requirement of wartime armies to find



Download as:   txt (26.8 Kb)   pdf (261.4 Kb)   docx (21.3 Kb)  
Continue for 18 more pages »
Only available on
Citation Generator

(2010, 12). World War One. Retrieved 12, 2010, from

"World War One" 12 2010. 2010. 12 2010 <>.

"World War One.", 12 2010. Web. 12 2010. <>.

"World War One." 12, 2010. Accessed 12, 2010.