The Battle of Verdun was the longest and costliest battle in world history, lasting from February 21st to December 18th, 1916; almost a year. German commander-in-chief Erich von Falkenhayn decided that Germany’s archenemy was Britain, not France. But, to destroy Britain’s will, France had to be defeated. The battle was fought between French and German troops on the hills of northeastern France. The German goal was to inflict as many casualties as possible on the French. The German army succeeded, and the British launched the Battle of the Somme in July 1916 to relieve this pressure off the French. However, Germany’s own troops suffered just as many deaths. After the French strengthened their advance, the Germans were pushed back to the point of calling off the battle. It is estimated that both sides lost over 300,000 men at the Battle of Verdun, but the true figures will never be known. Watch our other videos to learn more. Get your copy of Simple History: World War I, available on Amazon now.