15cm Schwere Feldhaubitz M1893

The 15cm schwere Feldhaubitz M1893 was the first German heavy howitzer to be light enough to serve with the field armies. It was obsolete at the outbreak of the First World War, but still saw service.

Trials of the M1893 began in 1891, and it was accepted for service in May 1893. It was a powerful weapon for its time, firing a heavy 42kg shell that could do a great deal of damage to fortifications, but it had no barrel recoil system and no traverse. Although it did have some advanced features for the period, including the use of new Krupp nickel steel alloys and it could be used with a hydraulic buffer tube to absorb some of the recoil when used in a fixed location, but despite this does look very old fashioned.

It was light enough to be pulled by a team of six horses. It was used to equip the heavy howitzer batteries of the Fussartillerie, with each battery getting four howitzers.

The army still had 870 of these weapons on hand at the outbreak of the First World War, and although they were obsolete, they saw combat with the veteran reserve Fussartillerie battalions. 


15cm Schwere Feldhaubitz M1893



Barrel Length

1,620mm (L/10.8)

Weight for transport


Weight in action



0 to 65 degrees


0 degrees

Shell Weight


Muzzle Velocity

280 m/sec

Maximum Range

6,050m shell with impact fuze
5,700m shell with time fuze

Rate of Fire

2 round/ min

German Artillery 1914-1918, Wolfgang Fleischer. Covers over 100 guns used by the German Army and shore detachments of the Navy during the First World War, a conflict largely dominated by artillery. Each one gets a brief description, a set of technical stats and a good picture. Shows the wide range of gun types and sizes used by the Germans during the First World War, and the way in which they evolved to deal with the unexpected challenges of trench warfare. [read full review]
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Books on the First World War | Subject Index: First World War

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (16 January 2018), 15cm Schwere Feldhaubitz M1893 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_15cm_schwere_feldhaubitz_M1893.html.html

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