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A major work by our greatest military historian, acclaimed as the definitive history of the First World War, the conflict that shaped the twentieth century.

The First World War created the modern world.

It destroyed a century of relative peace and prosperity and saw a continent at the height of its success descend into slaughter.

It unleashed both the demons of the twentieth century - political hatred, military destruction and mass death - and the ideas which continue to shape our world today: mdoernism in the arts, new approaches to psychology and medecine, and radical ideas about economics and society.

John Keegan's definitive account unforgettably portrays the unfolding military conflict on land, sea and in the air. But at its heart, too, is the terrible cost of this conflict's ferocity - the loss which remains personal and individual despite its unparalleled scale.


A splendid achievement. Many years of research, distilled with craft and conveyed in meticulous prose, make this the definitive book on the Great War… An enthralling and often very moving account of one of the great tragedies of modern history

Good Book Guide

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback


    January 15, 2014

    Bodley Head

    512 pages

    RRP $45.00

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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    August 31, 2011

    Vintage Digital

    512 pages

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Also by John Keegan

The Price Of Admiralty
The American Civil War
Intelligence In War
The Face Of Battle
A History Of Warfare
Six Armies In Normandy
Battle At Sea
The Iraq War
First World War
The Mask of Command
War And Our World
The Second World War
The Battle For History


Heroes of Hamel
Fromelles and Pozières
Young Hitler
Princesses Behaving Badly
Australians on the Western Front 1918 Volume I
Origin Story
The Square And The Tower
The Art of War: Popular Penguins
A Broken World
The Last 100 Days
24 Hours at the Somme
The Great War
Elsie and Mairi Go to War
Wilful Murder: The Sinking Of The Lusitania
The Second World War
Stealth Raiders
Antiques Roadshow: World War I in 100 Family Treasures
A Volunteer Nurse on the Western Front