Now all roads lead to France and heavy is the tread
Of the living; but the dead returning lightly dance.
Edward Thomas, Roads

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The First Tank-vs.-Tank Battle

At Cachy, South of Villers-Bretonneux: The First Tank Battle Was Fought Here

In April of 1918 the Germans launched an assault against the British lines at Amiens as a follow-up to their massive Michael Offensive initiated on 21 March 1918. This led to the first tank-vs.-tank battle in history. Three British Mark IVs faced off against three German A7V tanks. Two of the three Mark IVs were "females" outfitted with only machine guns, leaving only one (equipped with 6-pounders) to engage with the German tanks, each equipped with a single front-mounted cannon and machine guns on its side. After a lengthy exchange the Mark IV disabled the lead German A7V, which was then abandoned. The remaining German tanks withdrew, and, while attempting to pursue them, the Mark IV was taken out by artillery. 

German AV7 Tank

British Mark IV Tank 



  1. Are there any AV-7s still in existence?

    1. Yes there is one in Australia. Of all places – the historians of the Australian war memorial were kind enough to show me around it. Google Memphisto.

  2. I read a few years back, when Mephisto was moved and restoration work started, that a grassroots effort had started in the EU to try and force the Australian Government to hand over the tank. Their argument was/is that more people would be able to see Mephisto if it were located at the battle site.

    I do understand their reasoning, and do agree... HOWEVER...come on (!) it's a war trophy that was achieved at a heavy cost. The Australians deserve to keep it!!!

  3. There is one at Ashford in Kent UK,full story is available on the net just type in Ashford Tank for the story

  4. Very interesting tank vs. tank. A what if, that the Germans had turned to the idea of tanks earlier and had them available at the time of Kaiserschalct(?)

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