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Source: Stefan Kühn

Copyright: Creative Commons 3.0

The Battle of Gravelotte on 18 August 1870 was the largest battle of the Franco-Prussian War. Named after Gravelotte, a village in Lorraine between Metz and the former French–German frontier, it was fought about 6 miles west of Metz, where on the previous day, having intercepted the French army's retreat to the west at the Battle of Mars-La-Tour, the Prussians were now closing in to complete the destruction of the French forces.

The combined German forces under King Wilhelm I were the Prussian First and Second Armies of the North German Confederation with 210 infantry battalions, 133 cavalry squadrons, and 732 heavy cannons totaling 188,332 officers and men.  The French Army of the Rhine, commanded by Marshal François Achille Bazaine, dug in along high ground with their southern left flank at the town of Rozerieulles, and their northern right flank at St. Privat.


Copyright: Creative Commons 3.0

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Lorraine, France

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