Seventh battle of the Isonzo, 14-17 September 1916

The seventh battle of the Isonzo was the first of three short-lived offensives launched on the Isonzo front in the autumn of 1916. The sixth battle, in August, had produced a clear Italian victory, and the capture of Gorizia, on the eastern bank of the Isonzo.

The seventh battle was launched by the Italian Third Army of fourteen divisions, supported by 966 guns and 584 mortars. They faced the Austrian Fifth Army, with 101 battalions (the rough equivalent of eight Austro-Hungarian divisions), supported by 409 guns.

The Italian attack was preceded by an artillery bombardment that included some poisoned gas. At 9.00 a.m. the Italians attacked along a six mile front. The initial attack made some progress, but most of the ground taken on the first day was recovered by the Austrians by the end of the second day.

On 16 September the Italians captured San Grado di Merna, before on 17 September General Cadorna cancelled the offensive. The Italians suffered 17,000 casualties during the four day battle, while capturing 4,500 POWs. The fighting would begin against on 10 October (Eighth battle of the Isonzo).

Caporetto and the Isonzo Campaign, The Italian Front 1915-1918, John Macdonald with Zeljko Cimprié. An excellent study of the First World War on the Italian front, focusing on the twelve battles of the Isonzo, one of the most costly campaigns of the entire war. A good background to the campaign is followed by useful accounts of each of the battles, something quite difficult to find. [read full review]
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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (31 August 2007), Seventh battle of the Isonzo, 14-17 September 1916 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/battles_isonzo7.html

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