Open main menu

The 1st Army (Russian: 1-я армия, romanized) was an army-level command of the Russian Imperial Army created during World War I. The First Army, commanded by General Paul von Rennenkampf, invaded East Prussia at the outbreak of war in 1914 along with the Second Army commanded by General Alexander Samsonov.[1] After declaring war on the German Empire, the Russian Empire had been able to mobilize very quickly. All Russian forces were put under the command of Grand Duke Nikolai and his Quartermaster General Yuri Danilov.

1st Army
Russian coa 1825.png
ActiveJuly 1914 – beginning of 1918
Country Russian Empire
BranchLesser Coat of Arms of Russian Empire.svg Imperial Russian Army
TypeField army
General Aleksei Brusilov
General Lavr Kornilov
General Paul von Rennenkampf

The invading forces made a determined and speedy attack on East Prussia. However, the First and Second Armies were stopped by the German Eighth Army, led by Field Marshal Paul von Hindenburg and his Chief of Staff, General Erich Ludendorff. The German and Russian armies met at Tannenberg, where the Second Army was encircled and suffered complete destruction. Both the First and Second Armies suffered terrible casualties in one of the most comprehensive German victories of World War I. The First Army also suffered defeat at the First Battle of the Masurian Lakes in September 1914, which led to Rennenkampf's dismissal and replacement by Litvinov. First Army served under Northwestern front for the remainder of the war. Litvinov was replaced by Sokovnin in April 1917. Vannovski replaced Sokovnin in July and the army's final commander, von Notbek, took over in September 1917.


Order of battle on formationEdit

Military Fronts in which the 1st Army participatedEdit



The 1st Army had the following commanders until it was demobilized in 1918.

1st Army
From Until Rank Name
19 July 1914 18 November 1914 General of the Cavalry Paul von Rennenkampf
5 December 1914 2 April 1917 General of the Cavalry Aleksandr Litvinov
12 April 1917 25 April 1917 Lieutenant General Ilya Odishelizde
22 April 1917 30 July 1917 Lieutenant General Mikhail Sokovin
31 July 1917 9 September 1917 Lieutenant General Gleb Vannovsky
9 September 1917 November 1917 Lieutenant General Vladimir von Notbek

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Patrick Murphy (6 March 2006). "The Victories and Defeats of the Russian Army: 1914". Retrieved 7 September 2012.