4th Division

The 4th Australian Division was formed in Egypt in February 1916 as part of the scheme to split and duplicate the AIF. The 4th Infantry Brigade was transferred form the New Zealand and Australian Division, while the 12th and 13th Brigades were formed by duplicating the 4th and 3rd Australian Brigades respectively. Delays incurred because the 4th Division had to form its own artillery units from scratch meant that the division did not cross to France until June 1916. Once there, it entered the line near Armentieres towards the end of the month. Charles Bean wrote that on the Western Front the 4th Division earned itself a reputation for hard fighting, and that it had the "least polish" but the "most numerous war-scars" of all the Australian divisions. The 4th Division's original commander was a British officer, Major General H. Vaughan Cox. He was succeeded in January 1917 by an Australian, Major General William Holmes. When Holmes was killed by an artillery salvo in June, Major General Ewen Sinclair-Maclagan took command, and retained it until the end of the war.