Diary for Monday, May 1, 1916:
Ireland, Easter Rising – REBELLION ENDS: British casualties 521, rebels 58, civilian 736; 16 rebel leaders shot (until May 8), 79 jailed.
Britain: RFP (retail food price) up 6% to 55%. During May War Propaganda Bureau forms special pictorial section with painter Muirhead Bone first of 90 war artists. Sassoon’s first war poetry (The Old Huntsman) published.
Germany: Liebknecht arrested in 10,000 Berlin workers anti-war protest. During May the 1917 conscript class called up gradually (until August), 15 months early.
Holland: During May Mata Hari recruited as German agent, sails for Spain on May 24.
Spain: During May French agent and war widow Marthe Richer begins work as German Madrid Naval attaché’s lover.
German reverses east of Ypres and north of Albert (Somme). British trench newspaper parodies ‘How to Win the War’ ideas.
Verdun: Nivelle succeeds Petain in command, boasts ‘We have the formula’. Latter to head French Centre Army Group. French take trenches southeast of Fort Douaumont. 40 French divisions have fought since start of battle against 26 German divisions (no relief of formations, only replacements of men).
During May French Captain Andre Laffargue publishes pamphlet on revolutionary infiltration tactics for infantry (Germans apparently capture a copy).
Italian Front: During May French begin sending 250 MGs per month to Italy.
Rhodesia: 1st Native Regiment formed, leaves for East Africa on July 18.
Channel: Vice-Admiral Ronarc’h becomes French C-in-C for duration of War.
Adriatic: During May first Italian MAS motor launches (299 built) enter service (ordered April 1915). 47 Japanese fishing boats bought in 1916 for escort role. 4 Italian battleships now based at Valona, Albania.
Mediterranean: In May Admiral Haus promoted Austria’s first and only Grand Admiral (c. May 28). U-boats sink 37 ships or 72,072t in Mediterranean out of grand total of 119,381t.
Germany: First of 24 All-type coastal torpedo-boat/minesweepers commissioned for Flanders operations (6 finished at Antwerp).
France: First flight of French Spad S7 fighter (140-hp Hispano-Suiza V8 engine). Caquot (French) introduces the classic kite (observation) barrage balloon.
Britain: MG synchronized to fire through the propeller arc introduced into Royal Flying Corps squadron service (1 1/2-Strutters’ of No 70 Squadron).
Britain: During May British Grave Registration units formed in Egypt, Salonika, Mesopotamia and East Africa.