During the First World War, the town of Ypres in western Belgium was the scene of fierce fighting. There were five Battles of Ypres:
- First Battle of Ypres (19 October - 22 November 1914)
- Second Battle of Ypres (22 April - 15 May 1915)
- Third Battle of Ypres, a.k.a. the Battle of Passchendaele (31 July - 6 November 1917)
- Fourth Battle of Ypres, a.k.a. the Battle of the Lys (9 - 29 April 1918)
- Fifth Battle of Ypres (28 September - 2 October 1918)
Casualties in these gruelling battles were extremely high. The figure given here of 70% losses for 40 yards of gain is an exaggeration, but only just.