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Transportation facilities in the Turkish empire and in the
army are primitive and meager, which accounts in a
measure for the tardy mobilization of the armed forces on
the outbreak of the Balkan war of 1912-1913.

With the exception of twelve field hospitals with a ca-
pacity of 500 beds, there was but little provision made for a
sanitary service ; a deficiei>cy, which, as well as many others
in the peace organization, would seriously cripple the armies
in an offensive campaign, but which might be supplied by



258 • The Great War

improvising, so long as the army stood strictly on the
defensive.

Theoretically the Turkish army organization does not
differ essentially from that of other modern armies, but
little is generally known of the actual state of the units
with the colors. That the armies in the field fell far below
the standards of European efficiency was clearly demon-
strated by the campaigns of 1912-1913. The German com-
mission of 1913 was later increased by a large number of
German officers who entered upon their work under most
favorable auspices, and, probably, with full powers to make
and mend to the limit of the resources of the empire.

The disasters in the field in recent years cannot be
charged to the quality of the man behind the gun. The
material in the ranks is good; the great deficiency is in the
character and training of the officers, and in the training of
the non-commissioned officers. The efficient training of
these leaders is a long process. Tradition plays an impor-
tant part in their creation. No people can boast of more
brilliant feats of arms than the Turks; but their brilliant
leaders belong to a dim past, and are separated from the
present generation by a long period of decadence. The
Turks had the discernment and the good fortune to secure
the assistance of a carefully selected body of the foremost
military leaders of all time, who came with a precedence
recognized around the world, but the outbreak of the Great
War interrupted their work in its very beginning. The
new Turkish army was probably not ready for an offen-
sive campaign, but it should have been equal to a stubborn
defense ; and the Turk has, even in defeat, always proved a
dangerous enemy.

A prominent Bulgarian statesman is reported to have ex-
claimed on the conclusion of the peace of Bucharest, "Call



The Armies of Turkey and Bulgaria 259

us Huns, Turks, Tartars, but not Slavs;" and yet it is by the
Slavonic element in the race that the Bulgarians are known
to the world. For when, in the seventh century, the Slavs
of the Balkan Peninsula were con(iuered by a tribe of Fin-
nish Bulbars the Slavs lost their liberty and their name, but
the Bulbars lost their nationality. The conquerors were
less numerous than their subjects and were soon absorbed
by them; and from this mingling of the two races sprang
the Bulgarians of the present day. While they are classed
as Slavs the strain of old Bulgar blood has fashioned a
people very different from the Slavs of other nations and
given them a distinct individuality among the peoples of
the earth.

In the latter half of the seventh century Asparuch, hav-
ing subdued the Slavs, founded a powerful kingdom in
Moesia, once a Roman province lying south of the Danube,
west of the Black Sea, and north of the Balkans, which
corresponds to the present day Servia and Bulgaria. The
old Bulgars were a martial race loving war for war's own
sake, and the organization of their state, an aristocracy with
a prince at its head, had a military character. Their fron-
tiers were well guarded, and no one was allowed to leave
the country. If, by chance, some one escaped, the sentinel
was put to death. Just before going into battle the chiefs
would send a trusted follower to examine each man's horse
and arms, and should fault be found with either, the delin-
cjuent promptly paid the penalty with his life. Should one
show disobedience to a commander he was visited with
barbarous punishment. Such was the character of the state
founded by the Bulgars in 679, which for centuries engaged
in perpetual warfare with the Byzantines.

Under Simeon the dominions were enlarged, the ruler
assumed the title of tsar and the church was made inde-
pendent of the patriarchate of Constantinople, the Bulgarian



260 The Great War

archbishopric being elevated to a patriarchate. On his
death in 927, the Empire, torn by internal dissensions and
attacked by the Byzantines from without, began to decline ;
but once again in the last decade of the tenth century it
was united and extended under Samuel. It was during this
period, between the death of Simeon and the accession of
Samuel, that an event took place which exerts an influence
upon the history of Bulgaria even to the present time, the
appearance of the Russians under Sviatoslaff. Called by the
Byzantine emperor against the Bulgarians, he conquered
the people but was finally driven out by his own ally, who
occupied the country and on returning to Constantinople
oflFered up the crown of the Bulgarian tsars upon the
altar of Santa Sophia. Thereupon the eastern part of
the Bulgarian Empire, the old Moesia, became a prov-
ince of the Greek Empire. There was for a time a
struggle for independence in the west, but finally in 1018
it, too, passed under the rule of the Greeks and for nearly
two centuries Bulgaria almost ceased to possess a national
history.

In 1086 two brothers, Peter and Ivan Asen threw off the
Byzantine yoke, and in spite of domestic discord and for-
eign wars a second Bulgarian Empire was founded and
extended until it touched the three seas, and threatened
Byzantium. It was not to enjoy its greatness for many
years, however. Soon, civil wars broke out and the ex-
hausted country fell an easy prey to the invader when, in
1396, Bulgaria became a Turkish province, and the church
lost its national autonomy and became dependent upon the
Greek patriarchate at Constantinople. Thus began a double
slavery for the country which lasted five centuries.

The nineteenth century was marked by many uprisings
in the Balkan Peninsula, but it was not until the revolt of
1876 had been put down with savage cruelty by the



The Armies of Turkey and Bulgaria 261

Turks that Russia came to Bulgaria's aid, and by her vic-
torious arms wrung from Turkey the peace of San Stefano
"which realized almost to the full the national aspirations
of the Bulgarian race." Here, however, the Powers of
Europe intervened, and fearing the influence of Russia,
divided the "Great Bulgaria" into three parts.

It was after this time that Russian influence bore heavily
upon the Bulgarians. The country was occupied by Rus-
sian troops and administered by Russian officials. Russian
officers surrounded the prince and filled the high positions
in the army. The Russian General Kaulbars, Minister of
War. decreed that no officer should be appointed who had
not served two years in the Russian army. Thwarted in
their efforts to establish a national army and subjected to
interference in every department of government, it was
inevitable that the Bulgarians should rebel against their
Russian patrons as fiercely as against their nominal masters
the Turks.

When in 1885 Eastern Roumelia, which had been torn
from Bulgaria by the Congress of Berlin, was reunited to
her, Bulgaria became the largest state of the Balkan group;
and when a conspiracy fostered by the Russian military
attache in Sofia forced Prince Alexander to abdicate it was
the militia of Roumelia which saved the country and estab-
lished a national regency. The election of Prince Ferdi-
nand of Saxe-Coburg, a lieutenant in the Austrian army, to
rule over Bulgaria in 1887 may be taken as the beginning
of the modern Bulgarian army, which stands to-day as the
creation of this soldier prince. Based on the laws of 1897,
1903, and 1908, the army is divided into the Active Army
with its reserve, and the Territorial Army. As in the other
armies of the continent, service is universal and compulsory
for all men able of body and sound of mind between the
ages of twenty and forty-seven, or for a period of twenty-six



262 The Great War

years. The infantryman belongs to the active army and
its reserve for twenty years, then passes into the terri-
torial army for the remaining six years of his obligatory
service. In the cavalry, the artillery, and the technical and
auxiliary services the soldier belongs for nineteen years to
the active army and seven years to the territorial forces.
Young men between the ages of seventeen and twenty-one
may be called to the colors in case of war and volun-
teers may be accepted between the ages of fourteen and
eighteen.

Service with the colors is for the infantry two years, and
for the other branches of the army three years; so that the
infantry has eighteen year-classes of reserves to draw on
while the other arms have only sixteen classes. For educa-
tional and family reasons color service may be reduced to
one year, or to six months, or, under certain conditions, the
subject may pass directly into the reserve without color
service. Those who pass directly into the reserve, however,
for whatever reason, pay an annual military tax according
to income for twenty years. Mohammedans are excused
from service on payment of an annual tax in lieu thereof,
or, in case of immigration, on payment of a sum equal to
the annual tax for ten years.

The non-commissioned officers of the army were drawn
from the schools for the reserve officers, from the Military
School in Sofia, and from the regimental and divisional
schools maintained for the training of non-commissioned
officers. About fifty per cent of the total number of non-
commissioned officers were long service men who had
taken a course in the special schools maintained for their
particular training. The importance of highly trained non-
commissioned officers was fully recognized, and in every
organization an experienced and competent officer was
intrusted with their education and training.



The Armies of Turkey and Bulgaria 263

The officers of the army were drawn from the Military
School in Sofia or by competitive examination of aspirants
from other schools. A reserve for the officers of the active
army was created by the transfer of professional officers to
the inactive list where they remained subject to call to the
colore until they were sixty years old. The Reserve Offi-
cers' Corps was made up of men who, possessing the nec-
essary educational qualifications, became, after one year's
special training, "Aspirants." The following year they had
three months' training with troops, after which they were
appointed reserve officers. The appointment of non-com-
missioned officers with not less than fifteen years' service
formed another important class of reserve officers.

The recently created School of War in Sofia provided a
three-year course for the training of captains or lieutenants
for the General Staff. The Cavalry School in Sofia trained
officers of the cavalry for squadron commanders. There
was at the same school a course for the newly-appointed
officers and for non-commissioned officers. There was also
a school of fire for the officers of all arms, with a special
machine-gun course.

The population of less than 5,000,000 furnished an annual
recruit class of about 50,000 men. Of these, 33,000 were
enrolled in 1912, of whom 6,000 belonged to the favored
class who served short periods. The remainder of the con-
tingent passed directly into the territorial forces. The
reserves of the active army were called out annually for
from two to four weeks' training. Long service non-com-
missioned officers received one month's training annually
after they passed into the reserve, and reserve officers took
two months' training annually. The territorial forces were
divided into first and second classes. The first class re-
ceived seven days' and the second class three days' training
every year.



264 The Great War

The Active Army was organized into nine infantry divi-
sions and one cavalry division. Each active division had a
reserve brigade organized in peace and the two forces
together formed the field armies. The divisions were
grouped in peace into three army inspections, which in war
became three field armies of three divisions each. The
division was made up of two brigades of infantry, each of
two regiments, two squadrons of cavalry, nine batteries of
artillery, one pioneer battalion, a half company of tech-
nical troops, bridge train, telegraph section, ammunition
column, sanitary column, supply train, and a platoon of
gendarmes. On mobilization the reserve brigade of each
division took its place beside the two active brigades, mak-
ing a division of three brigades of twenty-four battalions,
with a fighting strength of 24,000 rifles, 24 machine-guns,
200 sabers, 72 field guns, 4 field howitzers, and 12 moun-
tain rifles.

The peace strength of the cavalry was three brigades and
the guard regiment. The third brigade was broken up on
mobilization and furnished the divisional cavalry of two
squadrons for each division. The other two brigades
formed a cavalry division of 16 squadrons with a fighting
strength of 2,400 sabers and 16 machine-guns. The guard
regiment was left unassigned. The cavalry was maintained
on a war footing.

The total strength of the field armies amounted to 216
battalions, 37 squadrons, 158 batteries, and 58 machine-gun
companies, with a fighting strength of about 225,000 rifles,
6,000 sabers, 722 guns, and 232 machine-guns. The Terri-
torial army formed in war 72 battalions with a total strength
of about 50,000.

The army was uniformed throughout in blue-gray trousers
or breeches ; the infantry and artillery wore a dark brown
coat, while the coat of the cavalry was dark blue.



The Armies of Turkey and Bulgaria 265

The infantry was armed with the 8-millimeter repeating
rifle, model of 1888, and the Mannlicher rifle, model of
1895. The cavalry carried the saber and the 8-millimeter
repeating carbine, model of 1895. The rifles of the field
artillery were Schneider-Canet rapid-fire guns, model of
1903 ; the mountain artillery was armed with 7.5-centimeter
Krupp rifles, model of 1905 ; while the heavy field artillery
had both Krupp and Schneider-Canet guns.

The organization of the army, as we know it, is that of
1912, just preceding the Balkan wars. It was a strictly
modern organization and has not been changed in any
essential feature; it can, however, give no true estimate of
the strength of the army of 1915. The campaigns of the
first Balkan war were everywhere victorious for Bulgarian
arms ; it was an ideal culmination for the making of an
army which had enjoyed a period of intelligent peace
training. While in the second war Bulgaria was forced to
make peace by an overwhelming combination of her
neighbors, her army suffered no crushing defeat; it was in
no sense disorganized, the spirit of the army was unbroken.
During these two wars the entire male population of mili-
tary age was called to the colors and stood under arms for
a year. It is estimated that the strength of the armed
forces approached 400,000 men in the summer of 1913.
The field armies of 1914 numbered fifteen divisions and
three independent volunteer corps. There can be no
doubt that King Ferdinand made good use of the year
intervening between the outbreak of the Great War in
Europe and Bulgaria's entrance into the conflict to put his
army in order. In his proclamation to the army after the
Peace of Bucharest, he said, " Exhausted, but not van-
quished, we have to furl our glorious standards in order to
wait for better days." The Bulgarians are a patient, plod-
ding, persevering people, and in waiting they have been



266 The Great War

preparing to take full advantage of the first development
in the European situation which would give promise of
uniting the Bulgarian people in an empire that would
secure for them their dream of independent national exist-
ence. To this end Bulgaria should have been able to put
in the field an army of half a million men, largely veterans,
with competent leaders trained in war.



CHAPTER VIII

The Armies of the British Empire

Mililarj' retrospect: original defensive forces, — the fyrd, a general levy;
personal troops; Norman system, military tenure; scutage; contract ser-
vice. The Honorable Artillery Company. Bowmen and archery. The
first cavalry. Yeomen of the Guard. Sergeants-at-arms. The London
Trained Bands. The militia. Dispute between Charles I and Parliament.
Cromwell's army. Beginning of a Regular force. Historic background of
famous regiments: Coldstream Guards; Grenadier Guards; Life Guards;
Home Guards and others. First modern Standing Army. Standing
Army under James II. Parliamentary control. Contract enlistment. Re-
ser\e forces. Reforms after Franco-Prussian War. The Indian Army :
origin, development, and strength. The Canadian Array : origin, organi-
zation, service, and strength. Citizen armies of Australia and New Zea-
land : service, training, and number. South African citizen army : service,
training, and strength. The Expeditionary Force : Regulars, Special Re-
serve, and Territorial Army, — organization, service, strength, officers'
training, chief command, and equipment. General considerations.

In spite of the crusade of Lord Roberts, Great Britain's
famous soldier and patriot, the British army remained in
the summer of 1914 the only professional army in Europe,
as opposed to the national armies of the great continental
powers. The United Kingdom, by its insular situation,
was able, as a rule, to abstain from interference in conti-
nental affairs, and, by the supremacy of its nav)% has long
been secure from invasion and able to carry out its national
policies without maintaining armies for use on the conti-
nent. In considering the character, strength, and organi-
zation of the British army at the opening of the most
momentous crisis in the history of Great Britain a brief
history of that army's development appears not only to be

of considerable interest, but also of importance. Moreover,

267



268 The Great War

the traditions of the small British army and its varied ser-
vices are of so great influence on its morale that a short
review^ of its past, at least in so far as its origin and growth
are concerned, seems advantageous, if not indispensable.

The first defensive force of England established in the
Saxon period was, strange to say, under compulsory service,
at the call of a civil authority. Every freeman between
the ages of fifteen and sixty was bound, as one of the con-
ditions of holding land, to bear arms for his country's
defense as well as for maintaining the peace. The sheriffs of
the several shires were authorized to make the levy which
was known as the fyrd. The forces so raised could not be
used outside of their respective counties for military pur-
poses, except to meet an invasion; and in no case could
they be required to serve out of England. Additional
forces were raised by princes and earls, a sort of personal
household troops of a more permanent character, and it is
interesting to note that at the Battle of Hastings these two
classes of defenders fought together.

The next stage of military development was a system of
military tenure, instituted under William the Conqueror,
which required that barons, in consideration of their hold-
ing estates, should furnish armed knights for the king's
service for forty days each year. Owing to the violent,
oft-recurring troubles between the barons and the king
this personal service system was commuted in 1159 by
Henry H for a money payment or scutage. The old sys-
tem of levies was not abolished, however, but by this pay-
ment of scutage the hire of mercenaries for foreign wars
was facilitated, as well as a prolongation of the stipulated
feudal service for pay by those who were willing to con-
tinue to serve. In 1181 Henry H revived the fyrd, or
militia system, by the Assize of Arms; it was still further
extended under Edward I by the "Statute of Winchester."



The Armies of the British Empire 269

The feudal service became less relied on as time went on
and in the war in France under Edward III the troops of
all ranks were paid for their services. The soldiers were
chiefly raised by contract made with some prominent leader
to furnish a stipulated number of armed and equipped sol-
diers to serve for a given period at a fixed charge. Thus
for a long period contract troops were employed to serve
during war, at the close of which they were disbanded.
The professional soldier was not hard to secure in view of
his remuneration, but to ensure his service for the contract
term it became necessary to punish desertion. The first
Parliamentary Act authorizing this was enacted under the
last Lancastrian King, Henry VI, and the next under the
first of the Tudors, Henry VII.

To the reign of Henry VIII belongs the famous char-
tered organization known as the Honorable Artillery
Company. The king's charter is dated August 25, 1527,
although the claim is made that the company originated in
1087 in "an armed company" to protect the London mer-
chants against robbers. Since 1908 it has become a regi-
ment of the Territorial Force. Henry VIII shared the
English predilection for the bowman. Had not the Eng-
lish archers won eternal fame under Edward I ? And now
the ancient yeomanry vanquished the Scots at Flodden,
1513, in spite of the assumed superior French organization
of the northern foe. It is not surprising, then to find that
archery was promoted, indeed enjoined, by Parliamentary
Act requiring people to practise archery and provide
horses and arms. But the king carried military organiza-
tion further ; besides the artillery, a permanent force, the
militia or general levy, — to be used only in the home
counties, — and the mercenaries, for foreign service, were
placed on a more efficient basis, and legislative enactment
was secured providing for the improvement of the breed



270 The Great War

of horses so that a stronger cavalry force might be created.
The Yeomen of the Guard (Beefeaters) had been estab-
lished by Henry VII in 1485 and may be regarded as the
germ of the standing army of Great Britain. This body-
guard of the king, as well as the Corps of the Sergeants-at-
Arms, established under Henry VIII became a permanent
force. In the reign of Mary the old General Levy was
further readjusted, but James I caused the repeal of the
arming laws of Henry VIII and also replaced the General
Levy by Commissions of Muster under which the cele-
brated Trained Bands were organized. These consisted of
persons selected from those liable to provide arms, horses,
or soldiers. They were to serve personally in defence of
the crown and to be trained at the cost of the parishes to
which they belonged. The bill and the bow no longer
formed part of the soldier's equipment, and if the home
soldiery had but little to recommend it in the eyes of war
experts, there had grown up since the beginning of the
wars in Holland in the last quarter of the sixteenth century
a large body of English soldiers trained in the foremost
science of war.

It was during the reign of Charles I that the term
Militia came into general use. It was the army of the
people and the landowners, was under command of the
lord-lieutenants of the counties and was a popular force,
but the troops raised by the sovereign were regarded with
distrust. Thus the troops billeted on the inhabitants by
Elizabeth and, later, by Charles I, particularly the latter,
greatly irritated the people. The king made strenuous
efforts to maintain a standing army in face of parliamentary
opposition, but finally granted the Petition of Rights. It
was not a little due to his designs in a similar way that the
final breach and the Civil War occurred. This event de-
manded a remodelling of the military system and Cromwell



The Armies of the British Empire 271

adopted the method of regular enlistment, soon organized
a strong cavalry force, and his foot soldiers formed upon
the London Trained Bands were recruited with great care.
The reorganization was effected in February, 1645, and from
this time it is not uncommon to date the beginning of the
Standing Army of Great Britain. Except for a compara-
tively few impressed men, the parliamentary soldiers were
enlisted voluntarily. Finally, in 1663, the Trained Bands,
except in London, were disbanded and the Militia was
organized.

In 1660, on the Restoration of the Monarchy, Charles II



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