Summary of the Prelude to the Second Battle of Ypres

January 1915 to 17.00 hours 22nd April 1915

In March 1915 the Commander of the German 4th Army in Flanders was considering making an attack in the Ypres sector to remove the bulge in the German Front Line formed by the Ypres Salient. This salient, or bulge in the line, was known to the German Army as the “Ypres Sack”.

Ypres Salient map showing the 3 options for the German attack on the Ypres Salient in early 1915.

Three options were under consideration for an attack:

From December 1914 a new weapon of war had been under development by the chemist Dr Fritz Haber. This was the idea that a cloud of chlorine gas could be blown on a gentle wind from the German Front Line across the enemy's trenches, forcing him to leave his positions.

The Prelude to the Battle section looks at the events leading up to the first gas cloud attack on the Western Front, launched by the German 4th Army as a trial weapon followed by an infantry attack.

Contents Page for the Prelude Section

For a list of all the pages in the sequence of events by time go to:

Contents Page for Prelude to the Second Battle of Ypres

Prelude Section

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