Mons

Battle_of_Mons (Wikipedia)
Battle of Mons
Part of the Battle of the Frontiers of World War I
4th Bn Royal Fusiliers 22 August 1914.jpg
"A" Company of the 4th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment), part of 9th Brigade of 3rd Division, resting in the town square at Mons before entering the line prior to the Battle of Mons. The Royal Fusiliers faced some of the heaviest fighting in the battle and earned the first Victoria Cross of the war.
Date 23 August 1914
Location Mons, Belgium
50°27′N 03°57′E / 50.450°N 3.950°E / 50.450; 3.950Coordinates: 50°27′N 03°57′E / 50.450°N 3.950°E / 50.450; 3.950
Result Decisive German Victory
Belligerents
 United Kingdom  German Empire
Commanders and leaders
United Kingdom Sir John French
United Kingdom Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien
German Empire Alexander von Kluck
Strength
2 corps
1 cavalry division
1 cavalry brigade
total: 80,000 men and 300 guns
4 corps
3 cavalry divisions
total: 160,000 men and 600 guns
Casualties and losses
1,638 2,000

The Battle of Mons was the first major action of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) in the First World War. It was a subsidiary action of the Battle of the Frontiers, in which the Allies clashed with Germany on the French borders. At Mons, the British Army attempted to hold the line of the Mons–Condé Canal against the advancing German 1st Army. Although the British fought well and inflicted disproportionate casualties on the numerically superior Germans, they were eventually forced to retreat due both to the greater strength of the Germans and the sudden retreat of the French Fifth Army, which exposed the British right flank. Though initially planned as a simple tactical withdrawal and executed in good order, the British retreat from Mons lasted for two weeks and took the BEF to the outskirts of Paris before it counter-attacked in concert with the French, at the Battle of the Marne.

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