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World War I's defining weapon for many, Germany's MG 08 machine gun won a formidable reputation on battlefields from Tannenberg to the Somme, while its more mobile successor, the MG 08/15, played a central role in the revolutionary developments in infantry tactics that characterized the last months of the conflict. Even in the 1940s, the two weapons would be pressed into service with German forces fighting in a new world war.
Drawing upon eyewitness battlefield reports, this absorbing study assesses the technical performance and combat record of these redoubtable and influential German machine guns, as well as their strengths and limitations in a variety of battlefield roles.
Dr. Stephen Bull, the curator of military history and archaeology for Lancashire museums, also consults for the University of Oxford on WWI projects. He is the author of several Osprey titles.
Johnny Shumate is a freelance illustrator living in Nashville, Tennessee, whose greatest influences are Angus McBride, Don Toiani, and Édouard Detaille.