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The Germans at Thiepval (Paperback)

Military > Battlefield Guidebooks WWI > Battles & Campaigns > Somme WWI > By Year > 1914 WWI > By Year > 1915 WWI > By Year > 1916

By Jack Sheldon
Imprint: Pen & Sword Battleground
Series: Battleground: WWI
Pages: 192
ISBN: 9781844154326
Published: 15th June 2005
Last Released: 1st August 2007



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Ninety years after the Battle of the Somme was fought, visitors continue to flock in very large numbers to the massive Memorial to the Missing at Thiepval, site of a bitter three-month struggle during the summer of 1916. This book explains in detail how, from the autumn of 1914 onwards, the German defenders turned this key feature into a virtually impregnable position, from which they were able for weeks on end to repulse every attempt to capture it. Drawing on original maps, photographs and personal accounts of the German defenders, the reader is taken stage by stage through the battles for the German front line between Ovillers and Saint Pierre Divion, during the two years from September 1914 to September 1916. It explains why the British attacks of 1st July 1916 failed so catastrophically, and culminates with an account of its eventual loss at the end of September 1916.

This books takes forward in great detail, and necessity, the German angle on the defence of what was one of the most pivotal defensive positions during the Battle of the Somme. All of the various villages names front on the Somme resonate, but perhaps none more so than Thiepval. This German defensive position became an iconic symbol of the British attempts to capture the German lines during the Battle.

As we would expect from all of the Battleground Europe series, the book gives so much to both the battlefield visitor, or arm chair enthusiast. It does not fail to deliver.

Jon Sandison, Freelance

Reviewed on Roll of Honour

Roll of Honour, Michael D. Booker

One in the handy Battleground Europe series of books which provide historical accounts alongside travel guide information which enables the reader to enrich their visits to this area of the Western Front. Visitors still flock to this area where in 1916 a bitter three month struggle took place. This book explains how, from 1914 onwards, the German defenders turned this key feature into a virtual fortress. Well written & researched guide. 9/10. MM

The Great War Magazine
 Jack Sheldon

About Jack Sheldon

Jack Sheldon is now firmly established as the leading authority on the German Army in the First World War. A retired soldier he lives in France and is fully engaged researching and writing. His German Army on the Somme was a run-away success and he has built on his reputation with The German Army At Passchendael, The German Army at Cambrai,The German Army on Vimy Ridge and The German Army at Ypres 1914. He lives in France.

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