What Are World War I Bayonets?


Quick Answer

A World War I bayonet is a blade, and is part of the guns that were used during World War I by most soldiers. The bayonet connects to the barrel of a battle rifle and was utilized in close combat.

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What Are World War I Bayonets?
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Full Answer

According to FirstWorldWar, the bayonet we know today as part of a battle rifle was constructed in Bayonne, France in the early 1600s and was still commonplace artillery during World War I. Most bayonets were of simple design. However, the French used a needle blade variation, and the Germans added a double row of saw teeth. The official British bayonet training manual instructed soldiers to aim their bayonets at sensitive spots on the enemy's body, such as the chest, throat and groin. However, stabbing the bayonet into the breastbone made removal of the blade difficult. Similarly, aiming the bayonet at the groin caused an excruciating wound, often causing the victim to grab the blade and attempt to pull it out. In such cases, the bayonet had to be removed from the rifle before the soldier could continue combat. An advantage of using a blade rather than a rifle or handgun in close combat is that it lessened the risk of injuring ally soldiers with bullets fired at close range.

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