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Flaming onions

From The Great War 1914-1918

Flaming onions: A colloquial name for a German anti-aircraft projectile. It had the appearance, on igniting, of a string of fire-balls, and was shot up to set fire to an attacking aeroplane. The name was suggested by the row of onions carried by the Breton street onion sellers, who go round hawking onions in English towns. The device, describes an officer, consisted of "about ten balls of fire, shot from some kind of rocket-gun. You can see them coming all the way from the ground, and they travel fast, too fast to make it possible to dodge them. The effect of these balls of fire reaching for you is most terrifying." [1]

References / notes

  1. Edward Fraser and John Gibbons (1925). Soldier and Sailor Words and Phrases. Routledge, London p.95.
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