In July 1916, the Franco-British forces launched a powerful offensive the Somme, as much to breach the German front line as to lieve the French at Verdun. Here was to begin an enormous battle that many have described as a "bloodbath : Which forces were involved in the fighting ? How did the battle unfold ? What were the ensuing results and consequences of this battle ? This guide provides the reader with a comprehensive overview of this key event in the Great War.