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28 Apocalyptic Pictures From The Front Lines Of World War I

From 1914 to 1918, civilization was locked in a horrific world war, a conflict that would leave over 17 million dead and some 7.5 million displaced.

Last updated on April 6, 2017, at 5:04 p.m. ET

Posted on April 6, 2017, at 5:04 p.m. ET

An American soldier shakes hands with a child as troops parade through the streets of London before leaving for the front lines in 1917.
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An American soldier shakes hands with a child as troops parade through the streets of London before leaving for the front lines in 1917.

A group of American soldiers along the Western Front fire a 37-mm gun at the German position in France on April 3, 1918.
Bettmann / Bettmann Archive

A group of American soldiers along the Western Front fire a 37-mm gun at the German position in France on April 3, 1918.

Bettmann / Bettmann Archive

Breaking through the Hindenburg line in the Argonne, an American soldier snapped this picture of an abandoned trench and a lone skeleton at its entrance, circa 1917.

A firefight takes place on the banks of Poland's Dunajec river in this hand-colored lantern slide from around 1914.
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A firefight takes place on the banks of Poland's Dunajec river in this hand-colored lantern slide from around 1914.

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German soldiers in gas masks fire an anti-aircraft gun against incoming low-flying airplanes in 1916.
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German soldiers in gas masks fire an anti-aircraft gun against incoming low-flying airplanes in 1916.

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Left: An unidentified soldier shows off the latest advances in body armor, circa 1915. Right: A German cavalryman wearing a gas mask and carrying a long spear highlights the collision of two different ages of war.

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A victim's dismembered hand lies on a battlefield in the north of France, 1916.

A French section of machine gunners takes position in the ruins during the battle of the Aisne in 1917.
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A French section of machine gunners takes position in the ruins during the battle of the Aisne in 1917.

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British searchlights reveal a colossal German zeppelin quietly looming in the night sky during a bombing raid in 1916.
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British searchlights reveal a colossal German zeppelin quietly looming in the night sky during a bombing raid in 1916.

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Left: British SE-5s are locked in aerial combat with German Fokker D7s, circa 1915. Right: A German soldier parachutes from an observation balloon after it had been destroyed by enemy action in 1918.

British soldiers with bayonets fight in the trenches on the Western Front of Cambrai in 1917.
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British soldiers with bayonets fight in the trenches on the Western Front of Cambrai in 1917.

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Boyer / Roger Viollet / Getty Images

A wounded soldier is photographed with and without a facial prosthesis in 1914.

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A fort in Przemysl, Poland, is shown in complete ruins after an enemy bombardment, circa 1915.
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A fort in Przemysl, Poland, is shown in complete ruins after an enemy bombardment, circa 1915.

A British tank advances on the Western Front in 1917.
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A British tank advances on the Western Front in 1917.

French troops with bayonets and primitive gas masks prepare for combat in the second Battle of Ypres in 1915.
Hulton Archive / Getty Images

French troops with bayonets and primitive gas masks prepare for combat in the second Battle of Ypres in 1915.

A Vickers machine gun team from Britain's Machine Gun Corps use PH anti-gas helmets to protect themselves from chemical weapons near Ovillers, during the Battle of the Somme in 1916.
Iwm / Getty Images

A Vickers machine gun team from Britain's Machine Gun Corps use PH anti-gas helmets to protect themselves from chemical weapons near Ovillers, during the Battle of the Somme in 1916.

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A sergeant of a Royal Engineers signals section puts a note into the cylinder attached to the collar of a messenger dog in August 1918.
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A sergeant of a Royal Engineers signals section puts a note into the cylinder attached to the collar of a messenger dog in August 1918.

French troops take cover from shellfire during the Battle of Verdun in 1916.
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French troops take cover from shellfire during the Battle of Verdun in 1916.

A group of soldiers inspect the aftermath of an artillery strike on horse-drawn German ambulances in 1915.
Hulton Archive / Getty Images

A group of soldiers inspect the aftermath of an artillery strike on horse-drawn German ambulances in 1915.

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Left: British soldiers blinded by chlorine gas are led through a military encampment in 1918. Right: A wounded American soldier receives first aid at Varennes-en-Argonne in September 1918.

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Medical workers bandage the wounded in a Belgian military camp hospital, circa 1916.
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Medical workers bandage the wounded in a Belgian military camp hospital, circa 1916.

Servicemen attend the mass funeral in Cobh, Ireland, of the victims of the Lusitania disaster during 1915. The Cunard liner was torpedoed by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland and sank, killing 1,198 people aboard.
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Servicemen attend the mass funeral in Cobh, Ireland, of the victims of the Lusitania disaster during 1915. The Cunard liner was torpedoed by a German submarine off the coast of Ireland and sank, killing 1,198 people aboard.

A service is held in Hoboken, New Jersey, for American soldiers who died on the battlefields of France, circa 1920.
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A service is held in Hoboken, New Jersey, for American soldiers who died on the battlefields of France, circa 1920.

Supporting troops of the 1st Australian Division walk on a duckboard track near Hooge, in the Ypres Sector, in October 1917.
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Supporting troops of the 1st Australian Division walk on a duckboard track near Hooge, in the Ypres Sector, in October 1917.

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