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German Hand & Rifle Grenades
Bulletin No. 59, March 7, 1944
[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from a U.S. wartime publication on enemy ordnance. As with all wartime material, the text may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the original contents. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]


The grenades used by the German Army may be categorized as follows:


1. High Explosive Grenades.

a. Anti-personnel grenades--these are of the "offensive" type; that is, they have a thin metal casing with a high proportion of explosive filler. Being of this type, they depend upon the blast effect, instead of the fragmentation of the case as in the "defensive" types used by other countries.

b. Anti-tank grenades--these are larger than the anti-personnel grenades and make use of the shaped charge to increase the penetrating power of the grenade.

2. Chemical Grenades.

a. Smoke grenades--these are either adaptations of the anti-personnel grenades or frangible grenades in which the filler is contained in a glass bottle.

b. Gas Grenades.

c. Smoke signals--those may be either thrown or placed on the ground.


1. Rifle propelled--there are two attachments which may be fitted to the standard infantry rifle for firing these grenades: a cup discharger and a spigot discharger.

a. High Explosives.

(1) Anti-personnel grenades.

(2) Anti-tank grenades.

b. Propaganda grenades.

2. Pistol propelled--these grenades are fired from either the standard signal pistol or from the signal pistol modified by the addition of rifling and a sight.

a. High Explosives.

b. Chemical Grenades.

(1) Smoke grenades.

(2) Signal grenades.


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