Of the many hard-fought battles on the Western Front, Ypres stands out as an example of almost inhuman endeavour. For four long years it was the focal point of desperate fighting. Officially there were four main battles in 1914, 1915, 1917 and 1918; these were more accurately peaks in a continuing struggle, for Ypres symbolised Belgian defiance, and the British continued to expend disproportionate resources on defending it. It never fell, although the Germans came close to its gates, and indeed its loss would have been a severe blow to morale. The Battle Book of Ypres, originally published in 1927 and now presented again as a special Centenary Edition, comprises a chronological account of the fighting in the Ypres Salient during the First World War, followed by a useful and unique alphabetical reference to the events in and around each hamlet, village or wood - names familiar to those who fought or followed the course of war all those years ago, names now once again lost in insignificance. The names given to each stage of the struggle by the Battle Nomenclature Committee are listed in the appendix. Also included is an index of formations and units, an annotated bibliography and a new Foreword by military historian Nigel Cave.