1914 Join Now! The British Empire Goes to War

To mark the centenary of the First World War, the Pays de Meaux Museum of the Great War is highlighting the role of British troops during the first months of the conflict. For the first time, British and French historians have drawn up a report on the situation of the Empire in 1914, and its engagement alongside France and Russia. From the landing of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) on French shores to the complex relations between general staffs, from the call for volunteers to the arrival of the first Indian troops, from the Irish question to the Christmas truce, and from the soldier's equipment to the specifics of artillery...the themes broached offer a general view of the Tommies' presence on the Western Front. Analyses of the emblematic battles of Mons, the Marne and Ypres help us to gain a very close understanding of the organization of the British army, an army which would have to adapt and evolve - just like the others involved - as the war developed into a stalemate. By focusing on the period from August to December 1914, this publication fills a historiographical gap, for very little has been made known about the role of British troops in the war's early days, even though they were fundamental to the Empire's ever greater involvement, on all fronts, until 1918.