British Attack on the German Front Line in World War I

  • The British First Army launched an attack on the German front line during World War I, with the aim of making two breaches in the German defenses.
  • The attack took place on both the southern and northern areas of the front line, but the preliminary bombardment was not as effective as expected.
  • The British suffered heavy casualties and the attack was ultimately unsuccessful in gaining significant ground.
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Two areas of the German front line, on either side of the Neuve Chapelle battlefield, were attacked by the British First Army (General Sir Douglas Haig). In the south I Corps and the Indian Corps attacked on a 2,400 yd (1.4 mi; 2.2 km) front from the Rue du Bois and IV Corps attacked in the north on a 1,500 yd (1,400 m) front opposite Fromelles. The attack was intended to make two breaches in the German defences 6,000 yd (3.4 mi; 5.5 km) apart, after which the infantry were to advance to Aubers Ridge about 3,000 yd (1.7 mi; 2.7 km) beyond. The preliminary bombardment began at 5:00 a.m. and at 5:30 a.m. became intense. Ten minutes later, the infantry attacked and surprised the German defenders, artillery fire cutting all the German telephone lines to the rear. Visibility was poor due to smoke and dust and the bombardment proved less effective than assumed; much of the British shell-fire fell short and few of the German machine-guns were destroyed. German machine-gunners and artillery began to fire at the same time and in ten minutes inflicted many casualties on the British infantry as they advanced across no man's land. The failure of the attack to gain more than a few footholds in the German first line led to a second attack at 8:00 a.m. after a forty-five-minute bombardment, which was repelled in no man's land by German defensive fire. A new attack was ordered for noon but was delayed until about 5:00 p.m. Despite a "terrific" bombardment, the German machine-gun nests were not destroyed and the machine-gunners stopped the attack with flanking-fire. To assist the French, whose attack had been more successful, another attack was ordered for 8:00 p.m. and then cancelled as it became clear that another attack could not be launched. The extent of the British defeat had not been realised, due to the difficulty of communicating with the front line. The British lost c. 11,000 casualties and German casualties had also been severe; the defensive position had been turned into a crater-field but German reserves were moved from the British front to Vimy Ridge on 12 May. Joffre and Foch met French that day to persuade him to resume the attack after the redeployment of German divisions south against the Tenth Army: French agreed to relieve a French division south of La Bassée by 15 May. Pétain proposed a combined attack on Souchez with the divisions of XXXIII and XXI corps for 12 May, which was rejected due to the exhaustion of the XXI Corps divisions. Pétain substituted a plan for three limited attacks against Carency, Bois 125, Ablain and Souchez, with similar attack in the south against Neuville. Joffre sent the III Corps to the Tenth Army as reinforcement but also had to withdraw artillery to support the British attack due at Festubert.

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>Two areas of the German ~ about 3,000 yd (1.7 mi; 2.7 km) beyond. ⇒ヌーヴ・シャペルの戦場の両側にあるドイツ軍前線の2地域が、英国第1方面軍(将軍ダグラス・ヘイグ卿)によって攻撃された。南では、第I軍団とインド軍団がルア・デュ・ボワから2,400ヤード(1.4マイル、2.2キロ)の前線で攻撃し、北では第IV軍団がフロメユの反対側の1,500ヤード(1,400 m)地点で攻撃した。この攻撃は、6,000ヤード(3.4マイル; 5.5キロ)離れたドイツ軍の防衛を2つに分断することを意図して、その後で歩兵隊が約3,000ヤード(1.7マイル; 2.7キロ)離れたオーベル・リッジに進軍することにしていた。 >The preliminary bombardment began ~ advanced across no man's land. ⇒予備爆撃は午前5時から始まり、午前5時30分に激しくなった。10分後、歩兵はドイツの防衛隊を急襲攻撃して、砲撃によりドイツ軍の後方に繋がるすべての電話回線を切断した。煙と塵のため視界は悪く、砲撃は想定よりも効果が低いことが判明した。英国軍の砲撃の多くは標的に届かず、ドイツ軍の機関銃はほとんど破壊されなかった。ドイツ軍の機関銃と大砲が同時に発砲し始めたが、英国軍の歩兵隊は中間地帯を横断中だったので10分後に多くの死傷者が出た。 >The failure of the attack to gain more than a few footholds in the German first line led to a second attack at 8:00 a.m. after a forty-five-minute bombardment, which was repelled in no man's land by German defensive fire. A new attack was ordered for noon but was delayed until about 5:00 p.m. Despite a "terrific" bombardment, the German machine-gun nests were not destroyed and the machine-gunners stopped the attack with flanking-fire. To assist the French, whose attack had been more successful, another attack was ordered for 8:00 p.m. and then cancelled as it became clear that another attack could not be launched. ⇒ドイツ軍の第一戦線への攻撃で2,3か所の足場しか獲得できなかったため、午前8時に2回目の攻撃を行うに至ったが、45分間の砲撃の後ドイツ軍守備隊の射撃によって中間地帯まで撃退されてしまった。新しい攻撃は正午にという発令であったが、それは午後5時頃まで遅れた。「素晴らしい」砲撃にもかかわらず、ドイツ軍の機関銃巣は破壊されず、(逆に)その機関銃手の側面砲火で攻撃が食い止められた。攻撃をより見事に成功させるフランス軍を支えるために、午後8時に別の攻撃が命じられたが、さらなる攻撃の開始はできそうもないことが明らかになったために、それは中止された。 >The extent of the British defeat ~ Vimy Ridge on 12 May. Joffre and Foch met French* that day to persuade him to resume the attack after the redeployment of German divisions south against the Tenth Army: French agreed to relieve a French division south of La Bassée by 15 May. ⇒英国軍の敗北の程度は、前線とのコミュニケーションが困難なために、実感されていなかった。英国軍は約11,000人の死傷者を失ったが、ドイツ軍の死傷者も深刻であった。防衛陣地は火口場に変わっていたが、ドイツ予備軍は5月12日に英国戦線からヴィミー・リッジに移された。その日、ジョフルとフォッシュが、ドイツ軍南師団による対第10方面軍の再配備後、ドイツ軍への攻撃を再開するよう説得するためにフレンチ*(=フレンチ・シャスール)と会談した。フレンチは5月15日までにラ・バセのフランス軍南師団に援軍を送ることに同意した。 *前便で「フレンチ・シャスール」とすべきところを、「フランス軍のシャスール」と誤訳していました。お詫びして訂正いたします。 >Pétain proposed a combined ~ attack due at Festubert. ⇒ペタンは、5月12日に第XXXIII軍団と第XXI軍団の数個師団によるスーシェへの複合攻撃を提案したが、第XXI軍団師団の消耗により拒否された。ペタンは、カレンシー、森林125、アブレン、スーシェに対する3回の限定攻撃の計画を、南でのヌヴィーユに対する同様の攻撃に置き換えた。ジョフルは、第III軍団を増援として第10方面軍に派遣したが、フェストゥベールでの英国の攻撃を支援するために、砲兵隊を撤退させなければならなかった。





  • 英文を日本語に翻訳してください。

    In the Second Action of Givenchy (15–16 June), IV Corps of the British First Army, attacked north-west of La Bassée with the 7th, 51st and Canadian divisions after a 60-hour bombardment, in which an attempt to alleviate an acute ammunition shortage was made by relying on artillery observation and tactical reconnaissance by reinforced RFC squadrons. No covering fire was available for the attack and the German defenders were seen to have manned the front line before the advance began. The Germans opened massed small-arms fire but were not able to prevent the British from entering the German front trench, where a bombing fight began. German infantry were well-supplied with hand grenades but the British were isolated by cross-fire along no man's land and were pushed back as they ran out of ammunition, the last troops retiring at 4:00 a.m. A new attack on 15 June, using all of the artillery ammunition left was delayed by thick mist and the difficulty in reorganising the infantry but went ahead at 4:45 p.m. and took the German front line. The advance was stopped until the line was consolidated but the British and Canadian troops who had not been pinned down in their own trenches were forced back by a German counter-attack at 8:00 p.m. after which further attacks were cancelled. The British Second Army conducted the First Attack on Bellewaarde on 16 June with the 3rd Division, which took the German first line easily at 4:15 a.m. The second and third waves rushed forward and ran into the British bombardment, which was not seen by the gunners due to the amount of mist and smoke created by the bombardment. The British still managed to reach the German second line and three German counter-attacks had only managed to push the 3rd Division back to the first line, when the British ran short of ammunition. Support from a brigade of the 14th Division to exploit the success, was delayed by German artillery-fire and fewer than two battalions of the 3rd Division managed to advance at 3:30 p.m., up a flat open slope and were repulsed with many casualties. At 6:00 p.m. the German front trench from Menin road to Railway Wood was consolidated, which was short of Bellewaarde ridge and the German observation posts along it. Joffre criticised British "inaction", which enabled the Germans to concentrate resources against the Tenth Army. The British First Army attacked in the Battle of Aubers Ridge, in support of the French offensive further south. North of La Bassée Canal, British artillery fire increased against the II Bavarian and XIX Saxon corps and at 6:00 a.m., an attack began against the 6th Bavarian Reserve Division and broke into the first line north of Fromelles. Fighting continued into the evening, when the trenches were recaptured. More British attacks occurred at Richbourg l'Avoué and at times penetrated to the German first line before being repulsed. Little ground was captured, none was held against German counter-attacks and German troops were soon sent south to reinforce the Arras front.

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    The Germans spent 23 October bombarding the old British positions and probing forward, as the Lahore Division (Lieutenant-General H. B. B. Watkis) reached Estaires, which had been made the assembly point for the Indian Corps, to be convenient to support II Corps or III Corps as necessary. The Jullundur Brigade relieved the II Cavalry Corps on 23/24 October, from the II Corps left flank at Fauquissart to the 19th Brigade at Rouges Bancs, which created a homogeneous British line from Givenchy northwards to Ypres. Opposite the Anglo-French south of the British III Corps, was part of the German XIV Corps and the VII, XIII, XIX and I Cavalry Corps. At 2:00 a.m., on 24 October, German artillery began a bombardment and just after dawn many German infantry were seen approaching the 3rd Division positions in the north. The German troops were easily visible and repulsed by artillery-fire before they reached the British front line. German attacks were suspended until dusk when an attack began south of Neuve-Chapelle on the right flank of the 3rd Division, until after midnight, eventually being repulsed, with many casualties. In the early hours of 25 October, German infantry were able to overrun some British trenches but were forced out by hand-to-hand fighting and at 11:00 a.m., the trenches were overrun again until reinforcements from the 9th Brigade forced the Germans back. On the left flank of the 3rd Division the 8th and Jullundur brigades were attacked from 9:00 p.m. on 24 October and the left flank battalion of the 8th Brigade was forced back. The flanking units fired into the area and a counter-attack at midnight by the brigade reserve battalion, managed to restore the position in costly fighting. Many German troops of the 14th and 26th divisions were killed in the attacks and several prisoners taken. By morning, the II Corps headquarters staff were relieved, that despite 13 days of battle, exhaustion and the loss of many pre-war regulars and experienced reservists, a determined German attack had been defeated. The corps front was not attacked on 25 October but German guns accurately bombarded the British positions, with assistance from observation aircraft, flying in clear weather. German infantry kept 700–900 yd (640–820 m) back, except for areas in front of the 5th Division. Some positions were evacuated during daylight hours to escape German shelling and engineers collected fence posts and wire from farmland, ready to build obstacles in front of the British positions overnight. Smith-Dorrien forecast a lull in German attacks but requested reinforcements from French who agreed, because a defeat at La Bassée would compromise offensive operations in Belgium.

  • 英文を日本語訳して下さい。

    The Hindenburg Line was unfinished on the Fifth Army front and a rapid advance through the German rearguards in the outpost villages, might make a British attack possible before the Germans were able to make the line "impregnable". The village eventually fell on 2 April, during a larger co-ordinated attack on a 10-mile (16 km) front, by the I Anzac Corps on the right flank and the 7th and 21st divisions of V Corps on the left, after four days of bombardment and wire-cutting. The British official historian, Cyril Falls, described the great difficulty in moving over devastated ground beyond the British front line. Carrying supplies and equipment over roads behind the original British front line was even worse, due to over-use, repeated freezing and thaws, the destruction of the roads beyond no man's land and demolitions behind the German front line.

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    By 26 September the ground-holding divisions had been reorganised so that the regiments were side-by-side, covering a front of about 1,000 yd (910 m) each with the battalions one-behind-the-other, the first in the front line, one in support and the third in reserve, over a depth of 3,000 yd (2,700 m). Each of the three ground-holding divisions on the Gheluvelt Plateau had an Eingreif division in support, double the ratio on 20 September. On 25 September, a German attack on the front of the 20th Division (XIV Corps) was prevented by artillery fire but on the X Corps front south of I Anzac Corps, a bigger German attack took place. Crown Prince Rupprecht had ordered the attack to recover ground on the Gheluvelt Plateau and to try to gain time for reinforcements to be brought into the battle zone to bolster the defensive system. Two regiments of the 50th Reserve Division attacked either side of the Reutelbeek, with the support of 44 field and 20 heavy batteries of artillery, four times the usual amount of artillery for one division. The attack on a 1,800-yard (1,600 m) front from the Menin road to Polygon Wood, to recapture pillboxes and shelters in the Wilhelmstellung 500 yd (460 m) away, had been due to begin at 5:15 a.m. but the barrage fell short onto the German assembly area and the German infantry had to fall back until it began to creep forward at 5:30 a.m. The German infantry managed to advance on the flanks, about 100 yd (91 m) near the Menin road and 600 yd (550 m) north of the Reutelbeek, close to Black Watch Corner, with the help of a number of observation and ground-attack aircraft and a box-barrage, which obstructed the supply of ammunition to the British defenders, before fire from the 33rd Division troops being attacked and the 15th Australian Brigade along the southern edge of Polygon wood, forced them under cover, after recapturing some of the Wilhelmstellung pillboxes near Black Watch Corner. A number of attempts to reinforce the attacking troops failed, due to British artillery observers isolating the advanced German troops with artillery barrages.

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    When the brigades attacked, they were swept by machine-gun fire from the fresh German 16th Division, which had crept forward in the dark and occupied shell-hole positions so close to the British jumping-off line, that the British barrage overshot them. The British infantry lost the barrage, which was as ineffective as elsewhere due to shells being smothered and moving too fast at 100 yd (91 m) in four minutes. The German counter-barrage arrived after a delay of seven minutes and was equally ineffective. The British destructive bombardment on German positions, was much more damaging than the creeping bombardment and caused considerable German casualties. The German pillboxes were mostly untouched and a great amount of small-arms fire from them, caused many British casualties from cross-fire and traversing fire, while positions dug into the ruins of Poelcappelle, were used to fire in enfilade against the British attackers. The British advance was stopped 100–200 yd (91–183 m) beyond the front line on the left, at the Brewery near Polcappelle, from which the troops withdrew to the jumping-off trenches to reorganise. As this retirement was seen, the survivors of other units on the left flank and in the centre conformed. On the right flank, the German defence had been far less determined and more ground could have been taken but for the failure on the left. The ground was consolidated and reinforcements were brought up between Pheasant Farm and Retour Crossroads. Prisoners reported many casualties in the German division opposite, due to it being fresh and willing to fight to hold its ground. After the fighting ended, both sides recovered wounded during a local truce. In the XIV Corps area, the 4th Division attacked with one brigade on an 800 yd (730 m) front. The limited progress of the XVIII Corps attack to the south, restricted the advance to just beyond Poelcappelle and a new line was consolidated beyond the Poelcappelle–Houthoulst road. To the north the 29th Division, had a final objective 1,650 yd (1,510 m) forward on the right and 2,500 yd (2,300 m) on the left. The attacking troops moved up the night before in torrential rain, the Newfoundland Battalion on the left flank, taking  4   1⁄2 hours, to move 6 mi (9.7 km) to the front line.

  • 英文を日本語訳して下さい。

    Two squadrons were reserved for close air support on the battlefield and low attacks on German airfields. The British planned to advance on a 17,000-yard (16,000 m) front, from St. Yves to Mt. Sorrel east to the Oosttaverne line, a maximum depth of 3,000 yards (2,700 m). Three intermediate objectives to be reached a day at a time became halts, where fresh infantry would leap-frog through to gain the ridge in one day. In the afternoon a further advance down the ridge was to be made. The attack was to be conducted by three corps of the Second Army (General Sir Herbert Plumer): II Anzac Corps in the south-east was to advance 800 yards (730 m), IX Corps in the centre was to attack on a 5,000 yards (4,600 m) front, which would taper to 2,000 yards (1,800 m) at the summit and X Corps in the north had an attack front of 1,200 yards (1,100 m). The corps planned their attacks under the supervision of the army commander, using as guides, the analyses of the Somme operations of 1916 and successful features of the attack at Arras on 9 April. Great care was taken in the planning of counter-battery fire, the artillery barrage time-table and machine-gun barrages. German artillery positions and the second (Höhen) line were not visible to British ground observers. For observation over the rear slopes of the ridge, 300 aircraft were concentrated in II Brigade RFC and eight balloons of II Kite Balloon Wing were placed 3,000–5,000 feet (910–1,520 m) behind the British front line. The Second Army artillery commander, Major-General George Franks, co-ordinated the corps artillery plans, particularly the heavy artillery arrangements to suppress German artillery, which were devised by the corps and divisional artillery commanders.

  • 英文翻訳をお願いします。

    A British outpost in the Meisennest, 500 metres (550 yd) from St. Pierre Divion, in the German front line near Thiepval, was attacked by units drawn from three German regiments, after a short artillery bombardment and recaptured. German losses were severe, as the second position had few deep dug-outs and Anglo-French artillery-fire was directed with great accuracy by observers in artillery-observation aircraft. Communication with the front-line was cut and Gruppe von Stein did not know if the line between Contalmaison and Pozières was still held; a counter-attack by two regiments was postponed.

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    The Franco-British attack on 9 May had been on a front of 16 mi (25 km) and in June three supporting attacks were planned by the French Second, Sixth and Seventh armies, along with an attack by the British near Zillebeke in Flanders. The preliminary bombardment was due to begin on 13 June and XXI Corps was to attack from the Lorette Spur towards Bois de Givenchy, XX Corps was to complete the capture of Neuville and the Labyrnthe and XXIII Corps was shifted slightly north to attack Souchez, Château Carleul, Côte 119 and Givenchy-en-Gohelle. IX Corps was moved from the northern boundary of the Tenth Army and placed between XXXIII Corps and XX Corps to take Vimy Ridge. During minor attacks in early June, the IX Corps divisions had gained little success and in one attack the infantry went to ground and refused to continue, which if repeated would leave the XXXIII Corps vulnerable to another advance into a salient. The artillery preparation was carefully observed from the front line and IX Corps troops were issued flares to signal to the artillery, who reported a highly accurate bombardment, particularly on the 5 Chemins crossroads and a derelict mill, which were the principal German defensive works opposite. On 15 June the commander of the 17th Division on the right of the IX Corps, wrote to General Curé, the corps commander, that preparations were incomplete and had not conformed to Note 5779, leaving the jumping-off trenches 200–300 metres (220–330 yd) from the German front line, rather than the 160 yd (150 m) or fewer laid down and that the infantry were already exhausted. In the rest of the Tenth Army the situation was the same, with infantry being set to hours of digging under German counter-bombardments. It was also discovering that the accuracy of French artillery-fire, was not sufficient make it effective. An attack on 13 June, by a regiment of the 70th Division on the sugar refinery, captured a small length of the German front trench, where they were bombarded by French artillery. An attack on 14 June took another short length of trench but the regiment had to be relieved by part of the 13th Division during the night of 15/16 June. Reports from the IX and XX corps on the southern flank, described accurate French artillery fire and XXI Corps on the Lorette Spur had a commanding view of German defences. Maistre the corps commander, had made artillery observation a specialist role for trained men, who kept close to the infantry to ensure efficient liaison. It was soon discovered that the Germans had put barbed wire 55 yd (50 m) in front of the front line, rather than just in front and special bombardments were fired to cut the wire, after which patrols went forward to check the results, despite German counter-bombardments. On the 43rd Division front, it was discovered that field artillery was only shifting the barbed wire around and not damaging cheveaux de frise but modern 155mm guns were used in time to create several gaps in the wire.

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    Two companies of the 47th Sikhs and the 20th and 21st Sappers and Miners attacked, as the 9th Bhopal Infantry was quickly forced under cover on the right. The attackers advanced by fire and movement over 700 yd (640 m) of flat ground, drove the Germans out of the village and reached the eastern and northern fringes. German artillery and machine-gun fire supported constant German counter-attacks, which eventually forced the Indians to retire despite the German fire, the 47th Sikhs losing 221 of 289 men and the Sappers losing 30 percent of their manpower in casualties. The 9th Bhopal Infantry also retired from a captured trench, which led to two flanking companies being overrun. During the attack the 2nd Cavalry Brigade occupied the Indian jumping-off trenches and gave covering fire during the retreat. The last cavalry reserve moved forward, to stop the German infantry debouching from Neuve-Chapelle advancing further south, until 2:00 p.m. when the last 300 men of an infantry battalion arrived. Further north the chasseurs and a British infantry battalion had advanced over much more difficult terrain and were too late to reinforce the Indian troops when their advance faltered. When the Indian troops retired, the attack was stopped and trenches west of the village were re-occupied. North of the village, the 9th Brigade was bombarded and sniped all day and but stood fast. Around 1:00 p.m. the Germans attacked south of the village, after five hours of bombardment, against the two northernmost battalions of the 13th Brigade, while other troops kept up the attack on the 2nd Cavalry Brigade and attached infantry. At 5:00 p.m. the Germans made a maximum effort along all of the attack front, advancing to within 100 yd (91 m) of the British positions in places. Exhausted troops were brought back into line to reinforce the cavalry and the German attacks diminished until 9:00 p.m., when a final attack was made in the south.[During the night the cavalry were relieved and a small salient opposite Bois du Biez relinquished to straighten the line; a patrol entered Neuve-Chapelle and found it empty but during the day German bombardments and probing attacks were received all along the line. The junction of the 13th and 14th brigades near La Quinque Rue and Festubert was attacked at about 4:00 a.m., when the Germans moved quietly forward in mist but were then caught by artillery and small-arms fire. A second attack just to the north occupied a British trench and at noon another attack was attempted after French shells were seen to drop short. This attack was also repulsed and a brief respite followed until after dark when German troops moved stealthily into the village. In the subsequent fighting they were repulsed three times. Successive attacks on the Indian Corps troops further north were mostly defeated by artillery-fire. During the day, most of the Indian Corps arrived in the area and began to relieve the remnants of II Corps overnight.

  • 英文翻訳をお願いします。

    The Battle of Arras (also known as the Second Battle of Arras) was a British offensive on the Western Front during World War I. From 9 April to 16 May 1917, British troops attacked German defences near the French city of Arras on the Western Front. There were big gains on the first day, followed by stalemate. The battle cost nearly 160,000 British and about 125,000 German casualties. For much of the war, the opposing armies on the Western Front were at a stalemate, with a continuous line of trenches stretching from the Belgian coast to the Swiss border. The Allied objective from early 1915 was to break through the German defences into the open ground beyond and engage the numerically inferior German Army in a war of movement. The British attack at Arras was part of the French Nivelle Offensive, the main part of which was to take place 50 miles (80 km) to the south. The aim of this combined operation was to end the war in forty-eight hours. At Arras the British were to divert German troops from the French front and to take the German-held high ground that dominated the plain of Douai.