3d pan white

Huge bell in a German support trench

Church bell in a German trench, Messines Ridge, Belgium, 1917. The image is dominated by and intricately carved and inscribed church bell. The bell is lying in the bottom of a muddy trench. The trench is a scene of devastation and chaos.


This photograph was taken after the Battle of Messines Ridge (June 1917), commanded by General Plumer (1857-1932), was a successful relief of German pressure on the French Army. The Battle of Messines Ridge was won by the Allies. British soldiers dug under the German's trenches and blew them up with TNT.


[Original reads: ' GREAT BATTLE OF MESSINES RIDGE. Huge bell in a German support trench. There is no village church within miles.']



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Taken circa 1918