WW1 Timeline — a detailed timeline of the Great War

The following WW1 timeline pages lay out the principal events of the Great War day by day with a year on each page.

It's very easy for Europeans to get the impression that the Great War was all about digging trenches and involved the British, French, Canadians, Australians, Americans and of course the Germans. Looking at the principal events of WW1 quickly shows you why this was called a 'World War'. So many countries and so many places were involved. Not only did the war take place on the ground but also at sea and in the air; it truly was a World War.

1914 Timeline 1915 Timeline 1916 Timeline 1917 Timeline 1918 Timeline

Related Reading

Book cover 1913 Before The Great War

1913: The World before the Great War (hardcover)

by Charles Emmerson

544 pages. Publisher: Bodley Head; First Edition edition (25 April 2013). ISBN-10: 1847922260; ISBN-13: 978-1847922267

Book cover The Great War by Peter Hart

The Great War: 1914-1918 (hardcover)

by Peter Hart

608 pages. Publisher: Profile Books (4 April 2013). ISBN-10: 1846682460; ISBN-13: 978-1846682469

Book cover Germany and Austria Hungary by Holger Herwig

The First World War: Germany and Austria-Hungary 1914-1918 (Modern Wars) (paperback)

by Holger Herwig

512 pages. Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic (29 Nov 1996). ISBN-10: 0340573481; ISBN-13: 978-0340573488

Book cover 1914-1918 by D Stevenson

1914-1918: The History of the First World War (paperback)

by David Stevenson

784 pages. Publisher: Penguin (25 Oct 2012). ISBN-10: 071819795X; ISBN-13: 978-0718197957

The First World War by Brocklehurst and Brook

The First World War (Usborne True Stories): In Association with the Imperial War Museum (hardcover)

by Ruth Brocklehurst and Henry Brook

Highly recommended.

WW1 Eyewitness book by DK

World War I (Eyewitness Series) (paperback)

by Dorling Kindersley

Photographs and stories about the people and their experiences of the First World War. Published by Dorling Kindersley. Re-issue edition (1 July 2011).

Book cover The First World War by John Keegan

The First World War (paperback)

by John Keegan

512 pages. Publisher: Pimlico; New edition (Nov 1999). ISBN-10: 0712666451; ISBN-13: 978-0712666459

Book cover Illustrated First World War by Hew Strachan

The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War (illustrated paperback)

by Hew Strachan

368 pages. Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks; New edition (9 Nov 2000). ISBN-10: 0192893254; ISBN-13: 978-0192893253

Book cover The Last Great War by Adrian Gregory

The Last Great War: British Society and the First World War (paperback)

by Adrian Gregory

362 pages. Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 1 edition (16 Oct 2008). ISBN-10: 0521728835; ISBN-13: 978-0521728836

Book cover British Culture 1WW by Professor Robb

British Culture and the First World War (Social History in Perspective) (paperback)

by Professor George Robbgerman

288 pages. Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (7 May 2002). ISBN-10: 0333715721; ISBN-13: 978-0333715727

Cover of Fighting on the Home Front

Fighting on the Home Front: The Legacy of Women in World War One (hardcover)

by Kate Adie

416 pages. Published by Hodder & Stoughton (26 Sep 2013). ISBN-10: 1444759671; ISBN-13: 978-1444759679

Book cover Before Endeavours Fade by Rose E B Coombs

Before Endeavours Fade

by Rose E.B. Coombs

Highly acclaimed guidebook, presenting the battlefields of the Western Front from the Belgian coast, across the fields of Flanders, over the valley of the Somme and down the line to the Argonne: all the major battlefields of the First World War - Ypres, Arras, Cambrai, Amiens, St. Quentin, Mons, Le Cateau, Reims, Verdun and St. Mihiel - are covered on easy to follow routes shown on a Michelin map.

Richard Holmes - Western Front

The Western Front

by Richard Holmes

Best known for his BBC series presentations in War Walks and War Walks II, the late Richard Holmes, acclaimed presenter and author of military history, chronicles the bloodiest days of World War I in The Western Front. This book covers everything from how the front was created and the British Army in France, to the battle of Verdun and the last Hundred Days of the war.

Related Topics

Trench remains at Newfoundland Memorial Park, 1916 Somme battlefield, France.
Newfoundland Park trenches.

WWI Education Resources for Teachers

Battles of the Western Front

Visiting the Western Front


Various sources have been used to create this timeline but a large proportion have come from a 1987 reprint of the following book first published in 1922 by His Majesty's Stationery Office (HMSO):

History of the Great War - Principal Events 1914-1918, HMSO, 1922, ISBN - 0 948 13031 8

For other specific sources used in this website see the bibliography: