After 2,000 German soldiers were killed in a losing battle near the Belgian city of Ypern on November 10, 1914, the German High Command published the following misleading report:
"We made good progress yesterday in the Yser sector. West of Langemarck, young regiments charged forward singing "Deutschland, Deutschland, über alles" against the front line of enemy positions and took them. Approximately 2000 men of the French infantry and six machine guns were captured."
This is called "Der mythos von Langemarck" (the myth of Langemarck) in German.
It starts with the name: correctly it would have been "Bixschoote", but since 'Langemarck' sounds similar to 'Bismarck' ... (Langemarck was still in British and French forces.) [Look at the distance between Bixschoote and Langemarck in the map below: a huge distance regarding the situation there!!!]
The reference to the later (sic!) German national anthem suggested more patriotic feelings.
And the huge German losses in that battle weren't mentioned at all. (Actually, there were about 2,000 German dead that day, part of about 6,300 dead German soldiers in the 5 weeks of fighting near Ypern in Oct.-Nov. 1914.)
It weren't "young German voluteers" either, but unqualified older volunteers of the 44th, 45th, and 46th Reserve Infantry Division.
In English this mythic event became known as the "Massacre of Innocents," which refers to a New Testament story (Matthew 2:16-17),.
Unfortunately for Germany, the Langemarck legend was carried by bourgeois and conservative groups (their enthusiasm for war was fulfilled from the combat will for the "superior culture" of Germany).
Even more unfortunately, it later became a symbol as an anti-republican memorial day (November 9 was called "Day of the Republic" officially during the Weimar Republic). The National Socialists developed an extensive Langemarck cult. ... ... ...