Big Bertha
   The name of the heaviest siege guns ever built alludes to the Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach works in Essen. This large howitzer bombarded Liege and Namur in 1914, but the same name was used for the 142-ton cannon that shelled Paris in 1918 from the unbelievable distance of 76 miles, safely within the German lines. Soldiers noted the resemblance between the gun and the rotund owner of the great Krupp armament empire. The designation Big Bertha was not flattering, nor was it meant to be. It is a translation of die dicke Bertha, "the fat Bertha," the name given by the Germans to their large howitzer.
   Bertha Krupp (1886-1957) took over as head of the Krupp works upon the suicide of her father, Friedrich Alfred Krupp (1854-1902). She was the sole heir to his immense fortune. In 1906 she married Gustav Bohlen und Halbach (1870-1950), whose petition for a change of name to Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach was granted.
   In reality, the belief that the cannon was a product of the famous German armament firm was mistaken. "Big Bertha" was made at the Skoda Works in Austria-Hungary.

Dictionary of eponyms. . 2013.

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  • Big Bertha — may refer to: * Big Bertha (howitzer), a heavy mortar like howitzers built and used by Germany during World War I *Big Bertha (golf club), a line of golf clubs from Callaway Golf *Big Bertha (drum), one of the world s largest bass drums *MR 0 10… …   Wikipedia

  • Big Bertha — Bertha Ber tha, n. [F. berthe, fr. Berthe, a woman s name.] A kind of collar or cape worn by ladies. [1913 Webster] {Big Bertha}, n. a large cannon used by the German army during World War I. [PJC] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Big Bertha — ist: der englische Spitzname für ein deutsches 42 cm Geschütz des Ersten Weltkrieges, siehe Dicke Bertha die erfolgreiche Driver Marke des Golfschläger Herstellers Callaway Golf ein massiv aufgebauter Ventora FE des Automobilherstellers Vauxhall… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Big Bertha — Informal. a large, long range German cannon used during World War I. * * * Either of two different sets of long range artillery produced by the Krupp works (see Thyssen Krupp Stahl) in Germany during World War I. The first were 420 mm (16.5 in.)… …   Universalium

  • big bertha — noun Usage: usually capitalized both Bs Etymology: approximate translation of German dicke Bertha, literally, fat Bertha, after Frau Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach died 1957 proprietress of the Krupp Works, Essen, Germany, where during the… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Big Bertha — /bɪg ˈbɜθə/ (say big berthuh) noun World War I Colloquial a type of howitzer used by German forces. Also, Bertha. {? named after Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, 1886–1957, proprietor of the German industrial company, Krupp, manufacturer of… …   Australian English dictionary

  • Big Bertha — noun A heavy, long range howitzer used by Germany in World War I …   Wiktionary

  • Big Bertha — World War I howitzer capable of hurling a one ton projectile nine miles. named for a member of the Krupp family …   Eponyms, nicknames, and geographical games

  • Big Bertha — nickname for the large cannons used by the Germans in World War I …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Big Bertha (drum) — Big Bertha is a bass drum used by the Longhorn Band of The University of Texas at Austin. The drum is considered by the university to be the world s largest drum. However, at 100 inches (8⅓ feet) in diameter, Rumble, the bass drum for blue… …   Wikipedia

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