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What was the first big scale (over 50 tanks used) battle with the use of tanks in WW1?

Please note that the typical examples don't constitute good answer:

  • Battle of Flers-Courcelette (Somme) was the first use of tanks but definitely not >50.

  • Battle of Cambrai (November 1917) - which seems to be the standard answer on Google search - appears to be incorrect: as per Wiki, there were earlier battles with over 50 tanks fielded, though there were no good details/references.

  • Second Battle of Villers-Bretonneux, France (1918) is notable for being first tank-vs-tank battle, but it was mere 3 against 3 quantity-wise.

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Good question; I'd be interested in the answer to this. If I rightly recall, more than 60 tanks set out for the battle of Fleurs-Courcelette, but rather fewer than that arrived, tanks being what they were in those days. I look forward to seeing what we can find. –  Brian Hooper Dec 20 '11 at 21:50
    
Good question? You do not ask for much. What is meant by "successfull"? The question is simply senseless! –  Gangnus Jan 28 '12 at 23:17
    
The Germans didn't build many tanks during WWI so there are no examples of large tank v tank battles. The Germans built around 20 of their A7V tanks and also used around 50 captured allied tanks, but there's no record of any battle involving more than 3 German tanks as mentioned above. –  davidjwest Sep 30 '12 at 14:38

1 Answer 1

A likely candidate seems to be the Battle of Messines, which took place in June 1917. According to John F. C. Fuller in Tanks in the Great War, 1914-1918, 88 tanks were employed (p. 110). He says 40 tanks advanced with the start of the attack at dawn, and an additional 22 set out with infantry in the afternoon.

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