Skip to main content

Browning Automatic Rifle

Browning Automatic Rifle. Responding to the need to counter massed German machine guns in World War I, renowned American arms inventor John M. Browning developed his Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) in 1918. This was a 16‐pound, gas‐operated weapon that fired .30‐caliber bullets from a twenty‐round detachable box magazine. The BAR had a selector switch that allowed the user to fire individual shots or in a fully automatic mode that would empty the magazine in about two seconds. The muzzle tended to rise during automatic fire, making it difficult to stay on target. Sustained automatic fire also tended to overheat the barrel.

Various firms produced some 85,000 BARs during World War I. By World War II, modifications had increased its weight to almost 20 pounds, but it remained in use as the principal squad automatic weapon of the U.S. Army during World War II and Korea. Some indigenous forces on both sides during the Vietnam War also used these weapons.

Bibliography

Joseph E. Smith and and W. H. B. Smith , Small Arms of the World, 9th rev. ed., 1969.
Ian V. Hogg and and John Weeks , Military Small Arms of the 20th Century, 4th rev. ed., 1981.

James M. McCaffrey

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Browning Automatic Rifle." The Oxford Companion to American Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. 15 Dec. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Browning Automatic Rifle." The Oxford Companion to American Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 15, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/browning-automatic-rifle

"Browning Automatic Rifle." The Oxford Companion to American Military History. . Retrieved December 15, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/browning-automatic-rifle

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.