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Encyclopedia > First Australian Imperial Force

This article is part of the
ANZAC series.
Military History

Australia | New Zealand Image File history File links Australian_Army_Rising_Sun_Badge_1904. ... The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (popularly abbreviated as ANZAC) was originally an army corps of Australian and New Zealand troops who fought in World War I at Gallipoli against the Turks. ...

Expeditionary Forces

AIF | NZEF The New Zealand Expeditionary Force (NZEF) was the title of the military force sent from New Zealand to fight for Britain in World War I. Upon the outbreak of war, New Zealand immediately offered to provide two brigades — one of infantry and one of mounted troops — a total of 8...

Corps

ANZAC | I Anzac | II Anzac
Australian | Desert Mounted The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps was a First World War army corps of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force that was formed in Egypt in 1915 and operated during the Battle of Gallipoli. ... The I Anzac Corps was an Australian and New Zealand World War I army corps formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the reorganization of the Australian Imperial Force following the evacuation of Gallipoli in November 1915. ... The II Anzac Corps was an Australian and New Zealand First World War army corps formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the reorganization of the Australian Imperial Force following the evacuation of Gallipoli in November 1915. ... The Desert Mounted Corps was a World War I Allied army corps that operated in the Middle East (Sinai and Palestine) during 1917 and 1918. ...

Divisions

Aus 1st | 2nd | 3rd | 4th | 5th
NZ & Aus | New Zealand
Anzac Mounted | Aus Mounted The Australian 1st Division was formed in August 1914, at the outbreak of the First World War, as part of the Australian Imperial Force. ... The Australian 2nd Division was formed from reinforcements training in Egypt on July 10, 1915 as part of the Australian Imperial Force to fight in World War I. It fought at France where it was the last Australian division to see combat. ... The Australian 3rd Division was a World War I infantry division formed in Australia in March 1916 and which began to arrive in England in July at which time General John Monash was appointed as the commander. ... The Australian 4th Division was formed in the First World War during the expansion of the Australian Imperial Force infantry brigades in February 1916. ... The Australian 5th Division was formed in February 1916, during the First World War as part of the expansion of the Australian Imperial Force infantry brigades. ... The New Zealand and Australian Division was formed at the start of the Battle of Gallipoli as a composite division under the command of New Zealand general Alexander Godley. ... The New Zealand Division was a World War I division formed in Egypt in January 1916 following the evacuation of Gallipoli. ... The Anzac Mounted Division was a mounted infantry (light horse) division formed in March Egypt during World War I following the Battle of Gallipoli when the Australian and New Zealand mounted regiments returned from fighting as infantry. ... The Australian Mounted Division was a mounted infantry (light horse) division formed in Egypt during World War I. When the British forces in the Middle East expanded in late 1916, a second mounted division was created called the Imperial Mounted Division. ...


The First Australian Imperial Force (1st AIF) was the main expeditionary force of the Australian Army during World War I. It was formed from August 15, 1914, following Britain's declaration of war on Germany. Known at the time as the AIF, it is today referred to as the 1st AIF to distinguish from the 2nd AIF which was raised during World War II. The 1st AIF included the Australian Flying Corps, which was later renamed the Royal Australian Air Force. The Australian Army is Australias military land force. ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... is the 227th day of the year (228th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ... The Second Australian Imperial Force (2nd AIF) was the name given to the volunteer units of the Australian Army in World War II. The 2nd AIF was formed, from 1939 onwards, to fight overseas: most army units were Militia (reserve) units and under Australian law at the time, Militia troops... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) is the Air Force branch of the Australian Defence Force. ...

Contents

History

The 1st AIF was a purely volunteer force for the duration of the war. In Australia, two referendums on conscription were defeated, thereby preserving the volunteer status but stretching the AIF's reserves towards the end of the war. A total of 331,814 Australians were sent overseas to serve as part of the AIF, which represented 13% of the white male population. Of these, 18% (61,859) were killed. The casualty rate (killed or wounded) was 64%. About 2,100 women served with the 1st AIF, mainly as nurses. Close to 20% of those who served in the 1st AIF had been born in the United Kingdom but all enlistments had to occur in Australia (there were a few exceptions). As a volunteer force, all units were demobilized at the end of the war. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Elections Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A referendum (plural: referendums or referenda) or plebiscite (from Latin plebiscita, originally a decree of the Concilium Plebis) is a direct vote in which an entire electorate is asked to either accept or reject a particular proposal. ... This article is about the occupation. ...


Originally the Australian government pledged to supply 20,000 men organised as one infantry division and one light horse brigade plus supporting units. By the end of the war, the 1st AIF comprised 5 infantry divisions and the most part of 2 mounted divisions. The 1st AIF was predominantly a fighting force — the proportion of combat troops to non-combatants (medical, logistical, etc.) was exceeded only by the New Zealand Expeditionary Force. Symbol of the Polish 1st Legions Infantry Division in NATO code A division is a large military unit or formation usually consisting of around ten to twenty thousand soldiers. ... The Australian Light Horse in Palestine during World War I The Australian Light Horse soldiers were mounted infantry who served during the Second Boer War and World War I. The Light Horse differed from cavalry in that they usually fought dismounted, using their horses as transport to the battlefield and... In military science a brigade is a military unit that is part of a division and includes regiments (where that level exists), or (in modern armies) is composed of several battalions (typically two to four) and directly attached supporting units. ... The New Zealand Expeditionary Force (NZEF) was the title of the military force sent from New Zealand to fight for Britain in World War I. Upon the outbreak of war, New Zealand immediately offered to provide two brigades — one of infantry and one of mounted troops — a total of 8...


When originally formed in 1914, the AIF was commanded by General William Bridges, who also assumed command of the infantry division. After Bridges' death at Gallipoli in May, 1915, command transferred by default to General William Birdwood, commander of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. Birdwood was officially confirmed as commander of the AIF on September 14, 1916, while also commanding the I Anzac Corps. Major General Sir William Throsby Bridges (February 18, 1861-May 18, 1915) served with Australian forces during World War I, and was the first Australian to reach the rank of General. ... William Riddell Birdwood, 1st Baron Birdwood (13 September 1865 - 17 May 1951) was a World War I general who is best known as the commander of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) during the Battle of Gallipoli in 1915. ... The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps was a First World War army corps of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force that was formed in Egypt in 1915 and operated during the Battle of Gallipoli. ... is the 257th day of the year (258th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The I Anzac Corps was an Australian and New Zealand World War I army corps formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the reorganization of the Australian Imperial Force following the evacuation of Gallipoli in November 1915. ...


After the war finished, all AIF units went into camp and began the process of demobilisation. The exceptions were No. 4 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps and 3rd Australian Casualty Clearing Station, which participated in the occupation of the Rhineland. The 7th Light Horse Regiment was sent to occupy the Gallipoli peninsula, along with a New Zealand regiment. In general, while the British appreciated the fighting qualities of the Australian soldiers, they were not considered docile enough to act as an occupying garrison, and so no Australian infantry were called upon. There were 92,000 soldiers in France and a further 60,000 in England, 17,000 in the Middle East plus nurses in Salonica and India, all to be transported home. By May 1919, the last troops were out of France, 70,000 now encamped on Salisbury Plain. By September, only 10,000 remained. General John Monash , the senior Australian commander, was repatriated on December 26, 1919. The last transport organized to repatriate the troops was the H.T Naldera, which departed London on April 13, 1920. The 1st AIF officially ceased to exist on April 21, 1921 and on July 1, 1921 the military hospitals in Australia passed into civilian hands. The RAAF Roundel is based on that of the British Royal Air Force, with the central circle replaced by a Kangaroo, a symbol of Australia. ... The Rhineland (Rheinland in German) is the general name for the land on both sides of the river Rhine in the west of Germany. ... A map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East The Middle East is a region comprising the lands around the southern and eastern parts of the Mediterranean Sea, a territory that extends from the eastern Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf. ... The White Tower The Arch of Galerius Map showing the Thessaloníki prefecture Thessaloníki (Θεσσαλονίκη) is the second-largest city of Greece and is the principal city and the capital of the Greek region of Macedonia. ... Year 1919 (MCMXIX) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar). ... This article is about the plateau in southern England; Salisbury Plain is also an area on South Georgia Island. ... Sir John Monash General Sir John Monash, GCMG, KCB, VD (27 June 1865 – 8 October 1931), Australian military commander of the First World War, was born in Melbourne, Victoria, to parents of Prussian-Jewish origin (the family name was originally spelled Monasch). ... is the 360th day of the year (361st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1919 (MCMXIX) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar). ... is the 103rd day of the year (104th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1920 (MCMXX) was a leap year starting on Thursday. ... is the 111th day of the year (112th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1921 (MCMXXI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar). ... is the 182nd day of the year (183rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1921 (MCMXXI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar). ...


Infantry Divisions

11th Battalion posing on the Great Pyramid of Giza, 1915.
11th Battalion posing on the Great Pyramid of Giza, 1915.
Australian light horsemen
Australian light horsemen

Each division comprised three infantry brigades and each brigade contained four battalions. A battalion contained about 1000 men. Download high resolution version (800x783, 235 KB)Group portrait of the Australian 11th (Western Australia) Battalion, 3rd Infantry Brigade, Australian Imperial Force posing on the Great Pyramid of Giza in early 1915, prior to the landing at Gallipoli. ... Download high resolution version (800x783, 235 KB)Group portrait of the Australian 11th (Western Australia) Battalion, 3rd Infantry Brigade, Australian Imperial Force posing on the Great Pyramid of Giza in early 1915, prior to the landing at Gallipoli. ... The Great Pyramid of Giza is the oldest and largest of the three pyramids in the Giza Necropolis bordering what is now Cairo, Egypt in Africa, and is the only remaining member of the Seven Wonders of the World. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1200x1325, 288 KB) Australian light horsemen riding waler horses. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1200x1325, 288 KB) Australian light horsemen riding waler horses. ... The Australian 1st Division was formed in August 1914, at the outbreak of the First World War, as part of the Australian Imperial Force. ... The Australian 2nd Division was formed from reinforcements training in Egypt on July 10, 1915 as part of the Australian Imperial Force to fight in World War I. It fought at France where it was the last Australian division to see combat. ... The Australian 3rd Division was a World War I infantry division formed in Australia in March 1916 and which began to arrive in England in July at which time General John Monash was appointed as the commander. ... The Australian 4th Division was formed in the First World War during the expansion of the Australian Imperial Force infantry brigades in February 1916. ... The Australian 5th Division was formed in February 1916, during the First World War as part of the expansion of the Australian Imperial Force infantry brigades. ... The New Zealand and Australian Division was formed at the start of the Battle of Gallipoli as a composite division under the command of New Zealand general Alexander Godley. ... Symbol of the Polish 1st Legions Infantry Division in NATO code A division is a large military unit or formation usually consisting of around ten to twenty thousand soldiers. ... Infantry of the Royal Irish Rifles during the Battle of the Somme in World War I. Infantry are soldiers who fight primarily on foot with small arms in organized military units, though they may be transported to the battlefield by horses, ships, automobiles, skis, bicycles, or other means. ... In military science a brigade is a military unit that is part of a division and includes regiments (where that level exists), or (in modern armies) is composed of several battalions (typically two to four) and directly attached supporting units. ... Symbol of the Austrian 14th Armoured Battalion in NATO military graphic symbols A battalion is a military unit usually consisting of between two and six companies and typically commanded by a Lieutenant Colonel. ...


At the start of the Battle of Gallipoli the AIF had four infantry brigades with the first three making up the 1st Division. The 4th Brigade was joined with the sole New Zealand infantry brigade to form the New Zealand and Australian Division. The 2nd Division had been formed in Egypt in 1915 and wasmkjgfgnfdgcrhg underwent a major expansion. The 3rd Division was formed in Australia and sent to France. The original infantry brigades (1st to 4th) were split in half to create 16 new battalions to form another four brigades of infantry. These new brigades (12th to 15th) were used to form the 4th and 5th Divisions. This ensured the battalions of the two new divisions had a core of experienced soldiers. Combatants British Empire Australia British India Newfoundland New Zealand United Kingdom France Senegal  Ottoman Empire Commanders Sir Ian Hamilton Lord Kitchener John de Robeck Otto von Sanders, Mustafa Kemal Strength 5 divisions (initial) 16 divisions (final) 6 divisions (initial) 15 divisions (final) Casualties 182,000 251,309 The Battle of... Year 1915 (MCMXV) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Thursday[1] of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...


A 6th Division commenced forming in England in February 1917 but was never deployed to France and was broken up in September of that year. 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ...


The Australian infantry did not have regiments in the British sense, only battalions identified by ordinal number (1st to 60th). Each battalion originated from a geographical region. New South Wales and Victoria, the most populous states, filled their own battalions (and even whole brigades) while the "Outer States" often combined to assemble a battalion. These regional associations remained throughout the war and each battalion developed its own strong regimental identity. British regiment A regiment is a military unit, consisting of a variable number of battalions - commanded by a colonel. ... In set theory, ordinal, ordinal number, and transfinite ordinal number refer to a type of number introduced by Georg Cantor in 1897, to accommodate infinite sequences and to classify sets with certain kinds of order structures on them. ... Slogan or Nickname: First State, Premier State Motto(s): Orta Recens Quam Pura Nites (Newly Risen, How Brightly You Shine) Other Australian states and territories Capital Sydney Government Constitutional monarchy Governor Professor Marie Bashir Premier Morris Iemma (ALP) Federal representation  - House seats 50  - Senate seats 12 Gross State Product (2004... Motto: Peace and Prosperity Other Australian states and territories Capital Melbourne Governor HE Mr John Landy Premier Steve Bracks (ALP) Area 237,629 km² (6th)  - Land 227,416 km²  - Water 10,213 km² (4. ...


In the manpower crisis following the Third Battle of Ypres, in which the five divisions sustained 38,000 casualties, there were plans to follow the British reorganisation and reduce all brigades from four battalions to three. In the British regimental system this was traumatic enough; however, the regimental identity survived the disbanding of a single battalion. In the Australian system, disbanding a battalion meant the extinction of the unit. In September 1918, when the call was made to disband eight battalions, there followed a series of "mutinies over disbandment" where the ranks refused to report to their new battalions. In the AIF, mutiny was one of two charges that carried the death penalty, the other being desertion to the enemy. Instead of being charged with mutiny, the instigators were charged as being AWOL and the doomed battalions were eventually permitted to remain together for the forthcoming battle, following which the survivors voluntarily disbanded. Passchendaele village, before and after the Battle of Passchendaele The Battle of Passchendaele, otherwise known as the Third Battle of Ypres, was one of the major battles of World War I, fought by British, ANZAC, and Canadian soldiers against the German army near Ypres (Ieper in Flemish) in West Flanders... A regiment is a military unit, larger than a company and smaller than a division. ... 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... Mutiny is the act of conspiring to disobey an order that a group of similarly-situated individuals (typically members of the military; or the crew of any ship, even if they are civilians) are legally obliged to obey. ... Capital punishment, or the death penalty, is the execution of a convicted criminal by the state as punishment for crimes known as capital crimes or capital offences. ... AWOL (pronounced a-wall) is an acronym for the United States and other armed forces expression Absent WithOut Leave or Absence Without Official Leave. The United States Marine Corps and the United States Navy use the term Unauthorized Absence (UA) instead. ...


Mounted Divisions

Each division comprised three mounted light horse brigades. The Anzac Mounted Division was so named becaused it contained the one mounted brigade from New Zealand — the New Zealand Mounted Rifles Brigade. Likewise the Australian Mounted Division was originally named the Imperial Mounted Division because it contained the British 5th Mounted (Yeomanry) Brigade. The Anzac Mounted Division was a mounted infantry (light horse) division formed in March Egypt during World War I following the Battle of Gallipoli when the Australian and New Zealand mounted regiments returned from fighting as infantry. ... The Australian Mounted Division was a mounted infantry (light horse) division formed in Egypt during World War I. When the British forces in the Middle East expanded in late 1916, a second mounted division was created called the Imperial Mounted Division. ... The Australian Light Horse in Palestine during World War I The Australian Light Horse soldiers were mounted infantry who served during the Second Boer War and World War I. The Light Horse differed from cavalry in that they usually fought dismounted, using their horses as transport to the battlefield and... The Anzac Mounted Division was a mounted infantry (light horse) division formed in March Egypt during World War I following the Battle of Gallipoli when the Australian and New Zealand mounted regiments returned from fighting as infantry. ... The New Zealand Mounted Rifles Brigade consisted of over time of 4 units of mounted infantry and fought in World War One and World War Two. ... In the 1790s, the threat of invasion of England was high, with the French Revolution and the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte. ...


Army Corps

The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps was a First World War army corps of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force that was formed in Egypt in 1915 and operated during the Battle of Gallipoli. ... The I Anzac Corps was an Australian and New Zealand World War I army corps formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the reorganization of the Australian Imperial Force following the evacuation of Gallipoli in November 1915. ... The II Anzac Corps was an Australian and New Zealand First World War army corps formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the reorganization of the Australian Imperial Force following the evacuation of Gallipoli in November 1915. ... The Australian Corps was a World War I army corps that contained all five Australian infantry divisions serving on the British army in France. ... The Australian Army Medical Corps (AAMC) first served under that name in the Boer War. ... The Desert Mounted Corps was a World War I Allied army corps that operated in the Middle East (Sinai and Palestine) during 1917 and 1918. ...

See also

An Australian Imperial Forces cricket team played a number of first-class matches shortly after the First World War. ... A dental officer of the 34th Australian Dental Unit working at an advanced post in France in June 1918 The First Australian Imperial Force was one of the first military forces to care for soldiers teeth. ...

External links

  • First AIF Order of Battle 1914-1918
  • The AIF Project - Comprehensive database listing all servicemen of the 1st AIF

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