Mad minute

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Mad minute was a pre-World War I term used by British Army riflemen during training at the Hythe School of Musketry to describe scoring a minimum of 15 hits onto a 12" round target[citation needed] at 300 yards (270 m) within one minute using a bolt-action rifle (usually a Lee-Enfield or Lee-Metford rifle). It was not uncommon during the First and Second World War for riflemen to greatly exceed this score. Many riflemen could average 30 plus shots. The record, set in 1914 by Sergeant Instructor Alfred Snoxall, was 38 hits.[1] During the Battle of Mons, there were numerous German accounts of coming up against what they believed was machine gun fire when in fact it was squads of riflemen firing at this rate.[2]

In the Vietnam War, the term was used to describe a drill involving intense automatic weapons fire, intended to flush out infiltrators or ambushes.[3]

"Mad Minute" has remained in military parlance as a term to describe any short period of intense weapons fire.[4]


  1. ^ Ian V. Hogg, The Encyclopedia of Weaponry, Sterling Publishing, New York 2006.
  2. ^ David Lomas (2012). Mons 1914: The BEF's Tactical Triumph. Osprey Publishing. p. 62. ISBN 1782004440. 
  3. ^ V24N3 - Battlefield Innovation
  4. ^