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Thursday, 23 December 2010

Diary Entry - 23rd December, 1915

After breakfast, there was the usual inspection of men, but there were also some rifles and bandoliers to be inspected. The rifles were all in good order, but there was one short in C subsection, and also two men with five rounds of ammunition short. As usual, the attached men were a very disreputable, unshaven crowd, and I dressed them down and told Nott to give them plenty of work in fatigues. Peerless, the attached subaltern, was out with me all day, and we got on well together, and I showed him all I could. There was not much shooting in the morning, but in the afternoon we were kept busy, as Suttie and Captain Freeman were down in the trenches. The latter was being shown round. In the evening I partook of that delightful luxury, a bath, and the water was beautifully hot. After dinner, I was disturbed from my book by a call of the telephone saying that the left section were in action, having been called upon for support by the Infantry. I was not on duty but was called upon to go out and superintend the shooting.


  1. Ugh ... that final verb grates.

    Considering the conditions, disreputable and unshaven may have been par for the course.

    But this proves that ammunition was accounted for even back then.

  2. And yet, once those things slip, discipline may follow soon after.
    Re 'shooting' and all the other hair-raising aspects,'Autre temps, autres moeurs' has to be always kept in mind, I think.

  3. Yes,I do try to keep that in mind, but find it hard on occasion.

    Yes, other times, but why did they not have 'our sensibilities'? Perhaps we only have them upon their shoulders? I wonder.

    But it is like considering a natural disaster in China or Haiti. So many people lose a child that we in our safe loungerooms might be tempted to think that they do not grieve as we might, should we lose a child.

    Had their opponents been deliberately dehumanised to such an extent, that they could shoot at them as wild rabbits and feel slight moral compunction. This is just thoughts about war in general, not picking on EWM in particular.

  4. We are looking into the past - it is almost as strange as looking at our lives might be for them, I imagine.