What was the Date of the Great War?

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The Great War, also known as World War I, took place from 1914 to 1918. It was a global conflict involving many countries and resulted in significant loss of life and destruction. The war was triggered by the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, leading to a chain of events that caused major powers to declare war on each other. The conflict had a profound impact on the world, leading to the collapse of empires, the redrawing of borders, and the emergence of new political and social ideologies. Overall, the Great War was a pivotal moment in history that shaped the course of the 20th century.

In the present day, the majority of the world experiences a relatively peaceful existence. However, armed conflicts still occur in various parts of the globe. Nonetheless, most contemporary individuals have not lived through a period of extensive global warfare.

However, this was not the case a hundred years ago. The early 20th century was characterized by a worldwide dispute. In fact, it was so widespread and destructive that it became known as the Great War.

The conflict being referred to is World War I. At that time, though, no one anticipated the occurrence of a World War II. In reality, the Great War was often referred to as the War to End All Wars.

How did the Great War begin? It was preceded by disputes over foreign policies among the major powers of the world. Numerous nations began to increase their military capabilities and form alliances. Consequently, tensions escalated worldwide. Then, on June 28, 1914, an event took place that would ignite the start of the Great War. This was the day when Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated by a Serbian terrorist organization.

Shortly after, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. However, it did not end there. Austria-Hungary received support from its ally, Germany. On the other side, Russia came to Serbia’s aid. It did not take long for treaties and alliances to draw multiple nations into the conflict.

Europe became quickly divided. On one side was the Triple Alliance consisting of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy. They were at war with the Triple Entente comprising Russia, France, and Great Britain. As other countries joined in the war, the Triple Alliance was referred to as the Central Powers, while the Triple Entente became known as the Allied Forces.

The Great War was extremely bloody. It was primarily fought along two extensive fronts in eastern and western Europe. Many new types of warfare technology were introduced during World War I, including tanks and airplanes. Nevertheless, the majority of the fighting took place between soldiers in deep trenches dug into the ground.

Trench warfare was brutal. Soldiers would sometimes spend days and weeks in the trenches. They were constantly faced with the threat of death from enemy guns, grenades, and artillery fire. Additionally, they suffered from diseases and infections such as Trench Fever and Trench Foot.

In the trenches, troops conducted attacks on the opposing side by attempting to cross the section of land between the trenches. This area was known as “No Man’s Land.” Unfortunately, soldiers out in the open were easily targeted and killed by enemy fire.

The Great War resulted in an astonishing number of deaths. However, very little territory was gained or lost throughout the entirety of the conflict. Historians estimate that over 15 million people lost their lives, with more than 20 million wounded. To put this into perspective, it equates to an average of over 6,500 deaths every day of the war.

The United States joined the war in 1917 on the side of the Allied Forces. With fresh troops on their side, the Allied Forces soon pushed the Central Powers into retreat. Germany called for a cease-fire on October 3, 1918. The fighting finally came to an end with the signing of an Armistice at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month: November 11, 1918, at 11am.

The war came to an official end in 1919 when the Treaty of Versailles was signed by those involved. This treaty not only brought peace, but also established the League of Nations with the aim of preventing future wars. Unfortunately, the terms of the treaty inadvertently set the stage for World War II, which would prove to be even more widespread and devastating than the Great War.

To learn more about the Great War, you can explore the following activities with a friend or family member:

1. Put yourself in the shoes of a soldier during the Great War or even worse, imagine being a child participating in the war. Learn about the experiences of Children of the Great War and consider how you would have reacted in their situation.

2. If you’re having trouble visualizing where the trench warfare took place during the Great War, you can explore an interactive map online. Choose different regions and countries to learn more about what they were like during World War I. Share any interesting facts you discover with a friend or family member.

3. Are there any other historical wars you would like to learn about? Ask an adult friend or family member to help you research online or at your local library. Keep a list of the interesting facts you learn and enjoy the exploration.

Below are some sources you can use to further your understanding of the Great War:

– http://history1900s.about.com/od/worldwari/p/World-War-I.htm (accessed 12 May 2020)

– http://www.kidzworld.com/article/5701-overview-of-world-war-i (accessed 12 May 2020)

– https://kidskonnect.com/history/world-war-i/ (accessed 12 May 2020)

– http://www.ducksters.com/history/world_war_i/ (accessed 12 May 2020)


1. When was the Great War?

The Great War, also known as World War I, took place from 1914 to 1918. It started on July 28, 1914, when Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. The conflict quickly escalated, involving many countries around the world and ultimately leading to the formation of two major alliances: the Allies and the Central Powers. The war ended on November 11, 1918, with the signing of the Armistice of Compiègne. The Great War had a profound impact on global history, shaping the geopolitical landscape and setting the stage for future conflicts.

2. What were the main causes of the Great War?

The main causes of the Great War can be attributed to a combination of factors. These include the complex system of alliances between European nations, escalating militarism, imperialism, and the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary. The assassination, which occurred on June 28, 1914, in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, served as a catalyst for the outbreak of war. The underlying tensions and rivalries between nations, fueled by economic and territorial ambitions, contributed to the escalation of the conflict into a global war.

3. How did the Great War impact society?

The Great War had a profound impact on society, both during and after the conflict. It resulted in the loss of millions of lives and caused immense suffering. The introduction of new technologies and tactics, such as trench warfare and chemical weapons, brought about unprecedented destruction and casualties. The war also brought significant social changes, including the increased participation of women in the workforce and the suffrage movement. Additionally, the Treaty of Versailles, which ended the war, led to political and economic instability, laying the groundwork for future conflicts and shaping the course of the 20th century.

4. What were the long-term consequences of the Great War?

The long-term consequences of the Great War were far-reaching. The war led to the collapse of empires, including the Austro-Hungarian, Russian, German, and Ottoman empires. It also redrew the map of Europe and the Middle East, creating new nations and reshaping borders. The war’s aftermath gave rise to political ideologies such as communism and fascism, which would play significant roles in the following decades. Additionally, the war set the stage for World War II, as unresolved issues and grievances from the Great War fueled further conflicts. The Great War fundamentally transformed the global order, leaving a lasting impact on politics, society, and international relations.

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