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Title: War Letters of a Public-School Boy
Author: Jones, Henry Paul Mainwaring, 1896-1917
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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[Transcriber's note: Obvious printer's errors have been corrected.
Hyphenation and accentuation have been standardised, all
other inconsistencies are as in the original. The author's spelling
has been maintained.]



WAR LETTERS

OF A

PUBLIC-SCHOOL BOY



[Illustration: Lieut. Paul Jones.

(_From a Photograph by his Brother._)]



WAR LETTERS

OF A

PUBLIC-SCHOOL BOY

BY

PAUL JONES

Lieutenant of the Tank Corps

Scholar-Elect of Balliol College, Oxford: Head of the Modern Side
and Captain of Football, Dulwich College, 1914


WITH A MEMOIR BY HIS FATHER

HARRY JONES


     _He was the very embodiment in himself of all that is best in the
     public-school spirit, the very incarnation of self-sacrifice and
     devotion._

                                                     A DULWICH MASTER.


WITH EIGHT PLATES


  CASSELL AND COMPANY, LTD
  London, New York, Toronto and Melbourne
  1918



CONTENTS


                                                        Page
  Introductory                                             1


PART I. MEMOIR

Chapter

   1.  Childhood                                           9
   2.  At Dulwich College                                 14
   3.  Football                                           28
   4.  Cricket                                            37
   5.  Editor of _The Alleynian_                          41
   6.  Public Schools and the War                         47
   7.  Tastes and Hobbies                                 52
   8.  Music                                              59
   9.  Literature and Ethics                              72
  10.  History and Politics                               85
  11.  In the Army                                        98
  12.  Personal Characteristics                          110


PART II. WAR LETTERS

  At a Home Port                                         121
  With the 9th Cavalry Brigade                           131
  With a Supply Column                                   186
  In the Somme Battlefield                               202
  With the 2nd Cavalry Brigade                           212
  With the Tank Corps                                    229


PART III

  Epilogue                                               257

  INDEX                                                  277



LIST OF PLATES


  H. P. M. Jones as 2nd Lieut. A.S.C.         _Frontispiece_

                                              _To face page_
  Paul as an Infant                                        8
  In his 6th Year                                         12
  Winning the Mile, March 27, 1915                        22
  Dulwich College First XV, 1914-15                       28
  Dulwich Modern Side XV, 1914-15                         32
  Paul Jones in his 19th Year                            110
  As a Subaltern in the A.S.C.                           120



WAR LETTERS

OF A

PUBLIC-SCHOOL BOY



INTRODUCTORY

  _These laid the world away; poured out the red
  Sweet wine of youth; gave up the years to be
      Of work and joy ...
      And those who would have been,
  Their sons, they gave, their immortality._

                                              RUPERT BROOKE.


In deciding to publish some of the letters written by the late
Lieutenant H. P. M. Jones during his twenty-seven months' service with
the British Army, accompanying them with a memoir, I was actuated by a
desire, first, to enshrine the memory of a singularly noble and
attractive personality; secondly, to describe a career which, though
tragically cut short, was yet rich in honourable achievement; thirdly,
to show the influence of the Great War on the mind of a public-school
boy of high intellectual gifts and sensitive honour, who had shone
with equal lustre as a scholar and as an athlete.

My choice of the title of this book was determined by the frequent
allusions made by my son in his war letters to his old school. He
spent six and a half years at Dulwich College. His career there was
gloriously happy and very distinguished. On the scholastic side, it
culminated in December, 1914, in the winning of a scholarship in
History and Modern Languages at Balliol College, Oxford; on the
athletic side, in his carrying off four silver cups at the Athletic
Sports in March, 1915, and tieing for the "Victor Ludorum" shield.

As a merry, light-hearted boy in his early years at Dulwich, his love
for the College was marked. It waxed with every term he spent within
its walls. After he left it, that love became a passion, sustained,
coloured and glorified by happy memories. Everybody and everything
connected with it shared in his glowing affection. Its welfare and
reputation were infinitely precious to him. Like a _leitmotif_ in a
musical composition, this love of Dulwich College recurs again and
again in his war letters. Every honour won by a Dulwich boy on the
battlefield, in scholarship or in athletics gave him exquisite
pleasure. The very last letter he wrote is irradiated with love of the
old school. When he joined the Tank Corps, stripping, as it were, for
the deadly combat, he sent to the depôt at Boulogne all his
impedimenta. But among the few cherished personal possessions that he
took with him into the zone of death were two photographs--one of the
College buildings, the other of the Playing Fields, this latter
depicting the cricket matches on Founder's Day. In death as in life
Dulwich was close to his heart.

Paul Jones was a young man of herculean strength--tall, muscular,
deep-chested and broad-shouldered. But he had one grave physical
defect. He was extremely short-sighted, had worn spectacles habitually
from his sixth year and was almost helpless without them. In fact, his
vision was not one-twelfth of normal. Much to his chagrin, his myopia
excluded him from the Infantry which he tried to enter in the spring
of 1915, and he had to put up with a Commission as a subaltern in the
Army Service Corps. His first three months in the Army were spent at a
home port, one of the chief depôts of supply for the British Army in
the field. Eagerly embracing the first chance to go abroad, he left
Southampton for Havre in the last week of July, 1915. A few days
after his arrival in France, he was appointed requisitioning officer
to the 9th Cavalry Brigade--a post for the duties of which he was
specially qualified by his excellent knowledge of the French language.
After 11 months in this employment, he was appointed to a Supply
Column, and subsequently, during the protracted battles on the Somme,
was in command of an ammunition working party. In October, 1916, he
was again appointed requisitioning officer, this time to the 2nd
Cavalry Brigade.

Though his duties were often laborious and exacting, his relative
freedom from peril and hardship while other men were facing death
every day in the trenches sorely troubled his conscience. Feeling that
he was not pulling his weight in the war and seeing no prospect of the
Cavalry going into action he resolved, at all hazards, to get into the
fighting line. After two abortive efforts to transfer from the A.S.C.,
he succeeded on the third attempt, and was appointed Lieutenant in the
Tank Corps, which he joined on 13th February, 1917. His elation at the
change was unbounded, and thenceforth his letters home sang with joy.
He took part as a Tank officer in the battle of Arras in April, and
when the great offensive was planned in Flanders he was shifted to
that sector. In the battle of 31st July, when advancing with his tank
north-east of Ypres, he was killed by a sniper's bullet. He seemed to
have had a premonition some days before that death might soon claim
him. In a letter to his brother, a Dulwich school boy, dated 27th
July, he wrote:

     Have you ever reflected on the fact that, despite the horrors of
     the war, it is at least a big thing? I mean to say that in it one
     is brought face to face with realities. The follies, selfishness,
     luxury and general pettiness of the vile commercial sort of
     existence led by nine-tenths of the people of the world in peace
     time are replaced in war by a savagery that is at least more
     honest and outspoken. Look at it this way: in peace time one just
     lives one's own little life, engaged in trivialities, worrying
     about one's own comfort, about money matters, and all that sort
     of thing--just living for one's own self. What a sordid life it
     is! In war, on the other hand, even if you do get killed, you
     only anticipate the inevitable by a few years in any case, and
     you have the satisfaction of knowing that you have "pegged out"
     in the attempt to help your country. You have, in fact, realised
     an ideal, which, as far as I can see, you very rarely do in
     ordinary life. The reason is that ordinary life runs on a
     commercial and selfish basis; if you want to "get on," as the
     saying is, you can't keep your hands clean.

     Personally, I often rejoice that the war has come my way. It has
     made me realise what a petty thing life is. I think that the war
     has given to everyone a chance to "get out of himself," as I
     might say. Of course, the other side of the picture is bound to
     occur to the imagination. But there! I have never been one to
     take the more melancholy point of view when there's a silver
     lining to the cloud.

The eagerness to subordinate self displayed in this letter was very
characteristic of its author. He was by nature altruistic, and this
propensity was intensified by his career at Dulwich and his experience
of athletics, both influences tending to merge the individual in the
whole and to subordinate self to the side. Death he had never feared,
and he dreaded it less than ever after his experience of campaigning.
His last letter shows with what serenity of mind he faced the ultimate
realities. He greeted the Unseen with a cheer.

His Commanding Officer, in a letter to us after Paul's death, wrote:

"No officer of mine was more popular. He was efficient, very keen, and
a most gallant gentleman. His crew loved him and would follow him
anywhere. He did not know what fear was."

From the crew of his Tank we received a very sympathetic letter which
among other things said:

"We all loved your son. He was the best officer in our company and
never will be replaced by one like him."

A gunner who served in the same Tank company testified his love and
admiration for our son and said that all the men would do anything for
him; even the roughest came under his spell.

A brother officer who served with Paul in the 2nd Cavalry Brigade, in
paying homage to his character, wrote: "He was a most interesting and
lovable companion and friend. He never seemed to think of himself at
all."

Among the many tributes that reached us were several from the masters,
old boys, and present boys at Dulwich College. Several of the writers
express the opinion that Paul Jones would, if he had lived, have done
great things. Mr. Gilkes, late headmaster of Dulwich, in a touching
letter, spoke of the nobility of his character and his high gifts; Mr.
Smith, the present headmaster, testified to his intellectual power,
energy and keenness; Mr. Joerg, master of the Modern Sixth, to his
sense of justice, loyalty and truth; Mr. Hope, master of the Classical
Sixth, to his high conception of duty, "his sterling qualities and
great ability." From the young man who was captain of the school when
Paul was head of the Modern Side came this testimony: "He was one of
the finest characters of my time at school; in me he inspired all the
highest feelings." One of his contemporaries in the Modern Sixth
wrote: "I owe more than I can express to your son's influence over me.
As long as I live I shall never forget him. His spirit is with me
always; for it is to him that I owe my first real insight into life."
A well-known Professor wrote: "I felt sure he was destined to do great
things; but he has done greater things; he has done the greatest
thing of all." Some of these letters are set forth in full in the
Epilogue.

Appended is a list of events in this rich and strenuous, albeit brief
life:

  Born at 6 Cloudesdale Road, Balham, May 18th, 1896.
  Entered Dulwich College, September, 1908.
  Junior Scholarship, Dulwich College, June, 1909.
  Senior Scholarship, Dulwich College, June, 1912.
  Matriculated, with honours, London University, 1911.
  Appointed Prefect at Dulwich, September, 1912.
  Secretary and Treasurer of the College Magazine, 1913-14.
  Editor of _The Alleynian_, 1914-15.
  Head of the Modern Side, 1913-15.
  Member of 1st XV, 1912-13, 1913-14, 1914-15.
  Hon. Secretary 1st XV, 1913-14.
  Captain of Football, 1914-15.
  Won a Balliol Scholarship, December, 1914.
  Tied for "Victor Ludorum" Shield, March, 1915.
  Joined the Army, April, 1915.
  Killed in Action, July 31st, 1917.

All that was mortal of Paul Jones is buried at a point west of
Zonnebeke, north-east of Ypres.



PART I

MEMOIR



[Illustration: Paul Jones as an Infant.]



CHAPTER I

CHILDHOOD

  Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
  The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star
  Hath had elsewhere its setting,
  And cometh from afar;
  Not in entire forgetfulness,
  And not in utter nakedness.
  But trailing clouds of glory do we come
  From God, Who is our home.

                   WORDSWORTH: "INTIMATIONS OF IMMORTALITY."


Henry Paul Mainwaring Jones, born in London on May 18, 1896, was the
first child of Henry and Emily Margaret Jones. His grandfather, the
late Thomas Mainwaring, was in his day a leading figure in literary
and political circles in Carmarthenshire. My own people have been
associated with that county for centuries. For our son's christening a
vessel containing water drawn from the Pool of Bethesda was sent to us
by my old friend Sir John Foster Fraser, who in the spring of that
year passed through Palestine on his journey by bicycle round the
world.

At this time I was acting editor of _The Weekly Sun_, a journal then
in high repute. Later, at Mr. T. P. O'Connor's request, I took charge
of his evening newspaper, _The Sun_. After the purchase of _The Sun_
by a Conservative proprietary I severed my connection with it, and in
January, 1897, went to reside in Plymouth, having undertaken the
managing editorship of the _Western Daily Mercury_.

We remained at Plymouth more than seven years. Paul received his early
education at the Hoe Preparatory School in that town. He was a lively
and vigorous child overflowing with health. When he was in his sixth
year we discovered that he was shortsighted--a physical defect
inherited from me. The discovery caused us acute distress. I knew from
personal experience what a handicap and an embarrassment it is to be
afflicted with myopia. Regularly thenceforward his eyes had to be
examined by oculists. For several years, in fact until he was 16, the
myopia increased in degree, but we were comforted by successive
reports of different oculists that though myopic his eyes were very
strong, and that there was not a trace of disease in them, the defect
being solely one of structure which glasses would correct.

To Paul as a boy the habitual wearing of spectacles was at first very
irksome, but in time he adapted himself to them. Even defects have
their compensations. He was naturally rash and daring, and his short
sight undoubtedly acted as a check on an impetuous temperament. He
early gave signs of unusual intelligence. His activity of body was as
remarkable as his quickness of mind. At play and at work, with his
toys as with his books, he displayed the same intensity; he could do
nothing by halves. There never was a merrier boy. His vivacity and
energy and the gaiety of his spirit brightened everybody around him.
When he bounded or raced into a room he seemed to bring with him a
flood of sunshine.

From his childhood he gave evidences of an unselfish nature and a
desire to avoid giving trouble. He had his share of childish ailments,
but always made light of them and bore discomfort with a sunny
cheerfulness; his invariable reply, if he were ill and one asked how
he fared, was "Much better; I'm all right, thanks." Marked traits in
him as a small boy were truthfulness, generosity and sensitiveness. In
a varied experience of the world I have never met anyone in whom love
of truth was more deeply ingrained. On one occasion in his twelfth
year, when he was wrestling with an arithmetical problem--the only
branch of learning that ever gave him trouble was mathematics--and I
offered to help in its solution, he rejected my proffered aid with the
indignant remark: "Dad, how could I hand this prep. in as my own if
you had helped me to do it?" His generosity of spirit was displayed in
his eagerness to share his toys and books with other children; his
sensitiveness by his acute self-reproaches if he had been unkind to
anyone or had caused pain to his mother or his nurse.

Plymouth is a fine old city, beautifully situated and steeped in
historic memories. Our home was in Carlisle Avenue, just off the Hoe,
and on that spacious front Paul spent many happy hours as a small boy.
His young eyes gazed with fascination on the warships passing in and
out of Plymouth Sound, on the great passenger steamers lying at anchor
inside the Breakwater, or steaming up or down the Channel; on the
fishing fleet, with its brown sails, setting out to reap the harvest
of the sea; and when daylight faded in the short winter days he would
watch the Eddystone light--that diamond set in the forehead of
England--flashing its warning and greeting to "those who go down to
the sea in ships and do business in great waters." Always from the Hoe
there is something to captivate the eye--the wonder and beauty of the
unresting ocean; on the Cornish side the wooded slopes and green sward
of Mount Edgcumbe; on the Devon side Staddon Height, rising bold and
sheer from the water; looking landward the picturesque mass of houses,
towers, spires, turrets that is Plymouth, and far behind the outline
of the Dartmoor Hills. On the Hoe itself one's historic memories are
stirred by the Armada memorial and the Drake statue; close at hand
is the Citadel, the snout of guns showing through its embrasures; and
near by is Sutton Pool, whence the Pilgrim Fathers set forth in the
little _Mayflower_, carrying the English language and the principles
of civil and religious liberty across the stormy Atlantic.

All these sights and scenes and historical associations had their
influence on a bright and ardent boy in these impressionable years. He
soon got to be keenly interested in the Navy, amassed a surprising
amount of information about the types, engine strength and gun-power
of the principal warships, and found delight in making models of
cruisers and torpedo-boats. The Army in those days made no appeal to
him, though he was familiar with military sights and sounds--the
ceremonious displays that take place from time to time in a garrison
town, bugles blowing, the crunch of feet on the gravel in the barrack
square, and the tramp, tramp of marching men. It was to the Navy that
his heart went out. The natural set of his mind to the Navy was
encouraged by the accident that his first school prize was Southey's
"Life of Nelson"--a book that inspired him with hero-worship for the
illustrious admiral.

[Illustration: Paul in his 6th Year.]

On Saturday afternoons, whenever weather permitted, it was my custom
to roam with Paul over the pleasant environs of Plymouth. We would
visit Plympton or Plym Bridge, Roborough Down or Ivybridge, Tavistock
or Princetown, for a tramp on Dartmoor. Or we would go by water to
Newton, Yealmpton, Salcombe, or Calstock, or cross by the ferry to
Mount Edgcumbe for Penlee Point, with its marvellous seaward view. He
was an excellent walker and a most delightful little companion, keenly
interested in all he saw, and absorbing eagerly the beauty of earth
and sea and sky. No wonder he had happy memories of the West country
and that his mind retained clear images of Plymouth, the sea, and
gracious, beautiful Devon!

In the summer of 1904 I returned to London, having accepted an
appointment on the editorial staff of the _Daily Chronicle_. Paul, who
had left his first school with high commendation, was entered in
September at Brightlands Preparatory School, Dulwich Common. There he
remained four years, during which he made rapid strides in knowledge.
His first report said: "Is very keen and has brains above the average;
conduct and work excellent; extremely quick and a splendid worker.
Doing very well in Classics, and making marvellous progress in
French." From later reports the following expressions are taken: "Keen
in the extreme, and a hard worker; a marvellously retentive memory."
"His work has been superlatively good; conduct excellent; drawing
poor; written work marred by blots and smudges." "Developing very
much; thoroughly deserves his prizes; his work is neater; composition
and geography excellent; and even in mathematics no boy has improved
more; now plays very keenly in games." "He is making splendid progress
with his Greek; gets flustered in Mathematics when difficulties
appear." Paul won numerous prizes at Brightlands for Classics,
English, French, General Knowledge, Reading, Athletics, and was almost
invariably top of his form. He left the Preparatory School after the
summer term, 1908.



CHAPTER II

AT DULWICH COLLEGE

  Ah! happy years! once more who would not be a boy?

                                     BYRON: "CHILDE HAROLD."


Our son entered Dulwich College in September, 1908, when he was twelve
years of age, and remained a member of it until March, 1915. These six
and a half years had a powerful influence on the development of his
character, which flowered beautifully in this congenial atmosphere.
The most famous school in South London, Dulwich College has a notable
history. It was founded through the munificence of Edward Alleyn,
theatre-proprietor and actor, a contemporary, an acquaintance, and
probably a friend of Shakespeare. At the inaugural dinner in
September, 1619, to celebrate the foundation of Alleyn's "College of
God's gift," an illustrious company was present, including the Lord
Chancellor, Francis Bacon, "the greatest and the meanest of mankind,"
then at the summit of his fame but soon to fall in disgrace from his
high eminence; Inigo Jones, the famous architect, who in that year was
superintending the erection of the new Banqueting Hall in Whitehall;
and other distinguished men.

Since its foundation the College has passed through many vicissitudes.
With the development of building on the estate the income rapidly
expanded in the nineteenth century. In 1857 the charity was
reorganised and the trust varied by Act of Parliament. The present
school buildings were opened in 1870. The old college--including the
chapel (containing the pious founder's tomb), almshouses and the
offices of the estate governors--remains in Dulwich Village, a very
picturesque and well-preserved structure embowered in trees. At its
rear is the celebrated Picture Gallery, the nucleus of which was a
collection of pictures originally intended to grace the palace of
Stanislaus, the last King of Poland. The new college buildings have a
delightful situation. All around them are wide stretches of green
fields; here and there pleasant hedgerows; on the slopes of Sydenham
Hill charming woodlands, some of them a veritable sanctuary for
bird-life. In the spring-time the whole neighbourhood is musical with
the song of birds, and one is often thrilled by the rich haunting note
of the cuckoo. On the fringes of the playing-fields and round about
the boarding-houses are magnificent trees--chiefly elm, beech, birch
and chestnut, more rarely oak. In short, the surroundings of the
college have a thoroughly rural aspect. It is an ideal environment for
the training of boys. There is nothing in this sylvan and pastoral
beauty to suggest that we are in a great city.

Dulwich College is both a boarding school and a day school, the
boarders numbering about 120 and the day-boys about 550. When Paul
Jones entered the college as a day-boy in 1908 the Headmaster was Mr.
A. H. Gilkes, who retired after the summer term of 1914. Our son,
therefore, had the good fortune to come under the influence for six
years of one of the greatest public-school masters of our generation.
A former colleague of mine, Mr. Henry W. Nevinson, used to speak to me
in glowing terms of Mr. Gilkes, who was a master at Shrewsbury School
when he was a boy there, and I note that the Rev. Dr. Horton in his
"Autobiography" alludes to him as "the master at Shrewsbury to whom I
owed most." Undoubtedly Mr. Gilkes's best work was done as Headmaster
of Dulwich. The College has never known a greater head. Under him the
whole place was revivified. During his reign not only did a fine moral
tone characterise the school, but there was equal enthusiasm for work
and games. Thanks to a commanding personality, in which strength,
dignity and graciousness were subtly mingled, the influence of Mr.
Gilkes pervaded the whole school from the highest to the lowest forms.
Paul quickly recognised the nobility of the "Old Man," as he was
universally known to the boys. His affection for him amounted to
veneration, and however brief the leave he had from the Army he always
found time to pay his old headmaster a visit. On his part Mr. Gilkes
had a great regard for our son, whom with sure perception he described
as "fearless, strong and capable, with a heart as soft and kind as a
heart can be."

A new boy's early days in a public school are often trying. He is in a
strange world with its own laws and customs; and at the outset he has
to endure the scrutiny of curious and often hostile eyes. Our son's
marked idiosyncrasies, sturdy independence, fastidious refinement and
passion for work, singled him out from his fellows as an original. As
boys resent any deviation from the normal, he had a rough time until
he found his feet, and the experience was repeated as he moved up to
new forms. Not a word about all this escaped his lips at home; I have
ascertained it from others. Stories reached me of personal combats
from which he usually emerged the victor, and of one prolonged fight
with an older boy that had at last to be drawn. In the end Paul won
through; his pluck and strength compelled a respect that would have
been refused to his intellectual gifts. His tormentors realised that
he was not a mere "swot," that he had fists and knew how to use them.
Animosity was also disarmed by his chivalric spirit. He began his
career at Dulwich in the Classical Lower IV. In June, 1909, he won a
Junior Scholarship, which freed him from school fees for three years,
and in 1912 a Senior Scholarship of the same nature. When he was in
the Classical Lower Fifth (1909), his form master, Mr. H. V. Doulton
reported:

"He is a boy of great promise and will make an excellent scholar. He
has marked aptitude for classical work, and success in the great
public examinations may be predicted for him with absolute
confidence." "Painstaking and anxious to do well, but rather slow,"
was the verdict of his mathematical teacher.

In the summer term, 1910, Paul changed over from the Classical to the
Modern side of the school. I was averse to the change, and his
Classical form-master dissuaded him against it. But once Paul's mind
was made up nothing would break his resolution: he had a strong and
tenacious will. His main desire in transferring to the Modern side was
to study English literature and modern languages thoroughly. He never
regretted the change. As he grew older the firmer became his
conviction that Classics were overdone in the public schools. Even in
a school responsive to the spirit of the age like Dulwich, which has
Modern, Science, and Engineering sides, the primacy still belongs to
Classics, and the captaincy of the school is rigidly confined to boys
on the Classical side. My son believed that this bias for Classics was
bad educationally. He thought the prestige given to Greek and Latin as
compared with English Literature, Science, Modern Languages and
History was simply the outcome of a pedantic scholastic tradition,
which made for narrowness not for broad culture. With him it was not a
case of making a virtue of necessity, as he had real aptitude for
Greek and Latin. But he wanted the windows of our public schools to be
cleared of mediæval cobwebs and flung wide open to the fresh breezes
of the modern world.

In the report for the last term of 1910, when he was in the Modern
Upper V, he was described as "a very capable boy with great
abilities." The next report, when he was in the Remove, complained of
his "frivolous attitude" in the Physics classes, but "otherwise he has
worked well and made good progress." In June, 1911, he passed the
Senior School Examination with honours, winning distinction in
English, French and Latin--a remarkable achievement for a boy who had
only just turned fifteen. Owing to his being under age, the London
Matriculation certificate in respect of this examination was not
forwarded until he had reached sixteen. "Considering that he is only
fifteen," wrote Mr. J. A. Joerg, his form-master, "it should be deemed
a great honour for him to have passed in the First Division; it does
him much credit." Mr. Boon, who prepared him in mathematics, testified
that Paul had "worked with interest and energy" at what was for him an
uncongenial subject. He entered the Sixth Form in September, 1911,
being then fifteen and a half years old; the form average was
seventeen years. In 1912 his reports showed that he was making
all-round progress, and was applying himself with zest to a new
subject, Logic. In the summer term, 1913, he was first in form
order--1st in English, 2nd in Latin, 3rd in French, 4th in German.
Though specialising in History, he retained his position as head of
the Modern side until he left school, with one interval in the summer
term of 1914, when he had to take second place, recovering the
headship next term. In order to have a clear road to Oxford
University, he qualified in Greek at the London Matriculation
Examination, January, 1914. During his Dulwich career he won many
prizes, most of which took the form of historical works. As will
appear later, he played as whole-heartedly in games as he worked at
his books.

History was a subject to which he was instinctively drawn, and in 1913
he began preparing definitely for an Oxford University scholarship. He
read thoroughly and covered a wide field. In addition to the
systematic study of History, he touched the fringes of philosophy and
political economy. He was helped in his studies by a very retentive
memory. One of his schoolfellows said to me, "Paul has only to read a
book once and it is for ever imprinted on his mind." Among the
historical writers whom he read during his eighteen months'
preparation were: Gibbon, Carlyle, Macaulay, Hallam, Guizot, Michelet,
Thiers, Bluntschli, Maine, Froude, Bagehot, Seeley, Maitland, Stubbs,
Gardiner, Acton, John Morley, Bryce, Dicey, Tout, Mahan, Holland Rose,
G. M. Trevelyan, Hilaire Belloc and H. W. C. Davis. Two recent books
that gave him special pleasure were Mr. G. P. Gooch's masterly
"History of Historians" and Mr. F. S. Marvin's entrancing little work
"The Living Past."

His hard reading was crowned in December, 1914, by a considerable
achievement, for he won the coveted Brakenbury Scholarship in History
and Modern Languages at Balliol College, Oxford. This scholarship,
worth £80 per annum, is tenable for four years; to it subsequently
Dulwich College added an exhibition of the annual value of £20. He was
the first Balliol scholar in history from Dulwich. Not at all
confident that he had won the Brakenbury, he went up to Oxford a
second time, while the result of the Balliol examination was still
unknown, to try for a less exacting scholarship. Happily there was no
necessity for him to undergo this second test, as he found on his
arrival at Oxford that his name had just been posted as a Brakenbury
scholar.

When he went up, in the last week in November, 1914, for examination
at Balliol College, it was his first visit to Oxford. Short as was
his stay within its precincts, it was long enough for the glamour and
beauty of the venerable university to steal into his soul; and the
spell of it remained with him as a permanent possession. In spite of
examination anxieties he had a pleasant time at Oxford, as the
following letter shows:

                                     THE OLD PARSONAGE,
                                                     OXFORD,
                                                 _December 1st_, 1914.

     Everything going as well as could be anticipated. But I don't
     expect to win the Brakenbury, so there can't be much of a
     disappointment. I have done one paper already, the
     essay--subject, "A Nation's character as expressed in its Art and
     Literature." I think I got on fairly well. The papers end by
     Thursday afternoon. I was round with all the Dulwich fellows in
     Wetenhall's rooms at Worcester College last night, and had a
     great time. Cartwright came across, and a lot of other O.A.'s.
     To-night I am dining with Gover, an old friend of mine, in hall
     at Balliol, and going on to his rooms afterwards. I am booked for
     brekker and dinner to-morrow. Dulwich is a magic name here; if
     you add "captain of football" all doors fly open to you.
     Altogether I don't feel I am up for a scholarship at all--a good
     thing, for it prevents my getting nervous.

Of the many congratulations on his success in winning a Balliol
scholarship, none granted him more than a letter from an "Old
Alleynian," who wrote:

     My very best congratters on the fresh laurel with which you have
     adorned your crown of victory. A Balliol scholarship for four
     years, and this to have been secured by the captain of a public
     school 1st XV that has won four out of its five great school
     matches! My dear Paul, you have done splendidly. I don't remember
     during my time such a happy combination of work and play.

Mr. Llewelyn Williams, K.C., M.P., himself an Oxford history scholar,
wrote: "Paul's brilliant success warmed even my old heart. Tell him
from me I hope when he is a Don he will write the History of Wales."

Paul was appointed a prefect at Dulwich in 1912. He participated in
every phase of school life and was devoted to athletics. In cricket he
was quick and adroit as a fielder, but he had no skill either as a
batsman--doubtless owing to his visual defect--or as a bowler. Very
fond of swimming, he was a regular visitor to the college swimming
bath. He had great endurance in the water, but lacked speed, and much
to his disappointment failed to get his swimming colours. His love of
swimming never waned, and in the sea he would swim long distances.
Swimming brought him an ecstasy of physical and moral exhilaration. He
could say with Byron:

  I have loved thee, Ocean! and my joy
  Of youthful sports was on thy breast to be
  Borne, like thy bubbles, onward.

Lawn tennis is discouraged at Dulwich, but Paul became adept in this
pastime, thanks to games on the lawn attached to our house. In the
whole range of athletics nothing gave him so much pleasure and
satisfaction as Rugby football. Too massive in build to be a swift
runner, and unable owing to his defective vision to give or take
"passes" with quick precision, he was not suited to the three-quarter
line; but as a forward he made a reputation second to none of his
contemporaries in public-school football. He played for the College
1st XV in three successive seasons, during which he was not once
"crocked," nor did he miss a single match. His success in football was
an illustration of how a resolute will can triumph over a hampering
physical defect.

In the autumn of 1913 he was offered a house scholarship, which would
have meant residence in one of the boarding-houses. Without
hesitation he declined what was at once an honour and a privilege,
preferring to remain a day-boy. He dearly loved his home, and his
opinion was that the advantages of public-school training were much
enhanced when combined with home life. His custom was to ride to the
College on his bicycle in the morning, stay there for dinner and
return home in the evening between 6 and 7 o'clock, the hours
following afternoon school being devoted to games, the gymnasium, or
some other form of physical training.

In 1914 he was elected Captain of the 1st XV. No distinction he ever
won--and there were many--gratified him more. In a great public school
the duties that devolve on a captain of football are laborious and
responsible. They entail many hours of work weekly, the careful
compilation of lists of players for the numerous school teams, a
vigilant oversight of training and a watchful eye for budding talent.
But Paul loved the work, and love lightens labour. He threw himself
into the duties with all the enthusiasm of his nature. The amount of
time he was devoting to football in September and October made me
doubtful of his ability to carry off a Balliol scholarship in
December. Accordingly I suggested that he might relinquish the
captaincy temporarily, say for a month, so as to allow him freedom to
concentrate on his history reading before the examination. He would
not listen to the suggestion. He said he meant to fulfil the duties of
captain to the uttermost. If this jeopardised his chances for a
scholarship he would be sorry, but whatever the cost he was not going
to fall short in his work as captain of football. In the result he
brought off the double event, winning the scholarship and leading his
team with shining success.

[Illustration: Winning the Mile, March 27, 1915.]

His athletic career culminated at the school sports on March 27,
1915, when he won the mile flat race, the half-mile, and the
steeplechase, and was awarded the silver cup for the best forward in
the 1st XV. He tied for the "Victor Ludorum" shield with his friend
S. J. Hannaford (a versatile athlete reported missing in France,
September, 1917). These successes at the sports were a dazzling
finish to Paul's school days. He bore them, like his scholastic
triumphs, very modestly, but in his heart he was proud and happy. It
was not his nature to plume himself on any achievement. Only once do
I remember his betraying pride in what he had accomplished. It is
the custom in Dulwich to inscribe on the walls of the great hall the
names of boys who distinguish themselves on entering or leaving the
Universities and the Army. In due time the ten Oxford scholars of
1914 were walled. During his first leave from the Army Paul
revisited the old school, and I recollect his telling me that the
names of those who had won scholarships at Oxford had been duly
painted in hall. "My name is placed first," he said with a smile;
adding with emphasis, "and so it ought to be."

It was his hope that his own success would give a stimulus to the
study of history at Dulwich. In 1916, when he learnt that another
Dulwich boy was thinking of preparing for a Balliol scholarship in
history, he wrote to me from France, requesting that his notes,
memoranda, essays and books should be placed at the student's
disposal. He added in reference to a matter on which I had asked his
opinion:

     The education you get from a correspondence course is of a kind
     which, while useful for acquiring a knowledge of facts, is of
     very little value in the development of that culture which is the
     first and essential element in obtaining a 'Varsity--above all, a
     Balliol--scholarship. If a boy decides to go in for a history
     scholarship, the Dulwich authorities ought to provide him with
     adequate tutorship as part of his school training. Were the boy
     to go to an outside institution, the school would lose part of
     the honour gained by the winning of the scholarship. But
     remember that no one would have the ghost of a chance for an
     Oxford scholarship on the knowledge gained from a correspondence
     course taken by itself. Finally, any honour gained by a Dulwich
     boy ought to redound to the credit of Dulwich; the school alone
     should have the credit of the achievements of its members.

From masters and boys I learnt that my son's influence was specially
marked in his last two years at the College. It was an influence that
was always thrown on the side of what was lovely, pure and of good
report. Frank, free-spirited, open-hearted, his buoyancy and his rich
capacity for laughter diffused an atmosphere of cheerfulness; his
unflagging enthusiasm stimulated interest in athletics; his love of
learning and passion for work were contagious; his high ideals of
conduct helped to set the tone in morals and manners. The qualities he
most prized in boys were courage, purity, veracity. No one loved books
more, but book-learning by itself he placed low on the list. To use
his own words: "It is character and personality that tell." Purity in
deed and thought was with him a constant aspiration. He reverenced the
body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. From the ordeal of the
difficult years between 14 and 16 he emerged like refined gold. A boy
he was

                     With rosy cheeks
  Angelical, keen eye, courageous look,
  And conscious step of purity and pride.

His serene and radiant air was witness to a soul at peace with itself.
Things coarse and impure fled from his presence. It was the union in
him of moral elevation with physical courage that explained the secret
of his remarkable influence in school.

At Dulwich the school year is full and various. In addition to the
acquisition of knowledge there is much else to engage a boy's
interest--cricket, football, fives, swimming, the gymnasium, athletic
competitions, the choir; and then those red-letter days--Founder's
Day, with its Greek, French or German play, the Prize Distribution and
the Concerts. Our son bore his share in every phase of this varied
life. He had a warm corner in his heart for the College Mission, which
maintains a home in Walworth for boys without friends or relatives and
enables them to be trained as skilled artisans. The home has
accommodation for twenty-one boys; a married couple look after the
house work, and two old Alleynians are in residence. He never failed
after he left the College to send an annual subscription anonymously
to the Mission funds. An enthusiastic lover of music, he was for years
in the College Choir, singing latterly with the basses.

At the 1913 Founder's Day celebration Paul took a subsidiary part,
that of Fitzwater, in a scene from Shakespeare's _Richard II_, on
which occasion the King was brilliantly impersonated by E. F. Clarke
(killed in action, April, 1917). On the same occasion Paul was one of
the voyageurs in the scenes from _Le Voyage de Monsieur Perrichon_,
his amusing by-play in that modest rôle sending the junior school into
roars of laughter. At the 1914 celebration of Founder's Day he took
the part of Fluellen in a scene from _Henry V_, and sustained a very
different rôle, that of Karl der Sieberite, in a scene from Schiller's
_Jungfrau von Orleans_. Reviewing the performances, _The Alleynian_
said of the former: "In this piece Jones was the comedian. He was
clumsy and not quite at home on the boards, but his Welsh was
delightful."

Of his performances as Charles VII in Schiller's play the critic
wrote:

     The scene chosen is one of the most powerful scenes in the play.
     It is that in which the King, sceptical of the divine
     inspiration of the Maid, determines to test her by substituting a
     courtier upon his throne.... When she is not only not deceived,
     but proceeds also to interpret many of the King's innermost
     thoughts, the surprise of the monarch, passing into hushed
     reverence, calls for a studied piece of careful acting. H. P. M.
     Jones sustained this part, and sustained it well. He gave it the
     dignity which it needed, and if his natural gift of physical
     stature helped him somewhat, so also did the smooth diction and
     easy repose which he had evidently been at pains to acquire.

Of the performance as a whole: "It says a very great deal for the
German in the upper part of the school, that a scene can be enacted in
which both accent and acting can reach so high a level."

The school year at Dulwich always closes with a concert at which the
music, thanks to the competent leadership of Mr. H. V. Doulton, is of
a high order. The solos of the two school songs on 19th December,
1914, were sung by H. P. M. Jones and H. Edkins, both of them Oxford
scholars who have since been killed in action. Edkins, who had a rich
baritone voice, sang the song in praise of Edward Alleyn, the pious
founder. My son, as captain of football, sang the football song, the
first and last verses of which are appended:

  Rain and wind and hidden sun,
    Wild November weather,
  Muddy field and leafless tree
    Bare of fur or feather.
  Sweeps there be who scorn the game,
    On them tons of soot fall!
  All Alleynians here declare
    Nought like Rugby football.

  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  Broken heads and bleeding shins!
    What's the cause for sorrow?
  Shut your mouth and grin the more,
    Plaster-time to-morrow.
  Young or old this shall remain
    Still your favourite story:
  Fifteen fellows fighting-full,
    Out for death or glory.

After each stanza the choir and the whole school rolled in with the
chorus, proclaiming in stentorian voices that "the Blue and Black"
(these being the Dulwich football colours) shall win the day. My wife
and I were present at this concert, and there is a vivid image before
us of our son, a tall, powerful figure in evening dress, standing on
the platform in front of the choir, his eager face now following the
conductor's bâton, now glancing at the music-score, now looking in his
forthright way at the audience. The reception that greeted him when he
stepped on to the platform must have thrilled every fibre of his
being; another rapturous outburst of cheers acclaimed him as he
retired to his place in the choir. Those cheers, loud, shrill and
clear, with that poignant note that there often is in boyish voices,
still resound in our ears. We had heard that Paul was popular at
Dulwich: we had ocular and audible testimony of it on this
unforgettable night. Those had not exaggerated who told us that he was
the hero of the school.



CHAPTER III

FOOTBALL

  Play it long and play it hard
  Till the game is ended.

                                 DULWICH FOOTBALL SONG.


The earliest reference to Paul as a footballer appears in _The
Alleynian's_ report of a match, "Boarders v. School," played on
September 25, 1912, when the School won by 32 points to 21. "Jones,"
says the reporter, "presented an awesome sight." His first appearance
in the 1st XV was against London Hospitals "A" in October. Singling
him out for honourable mention, the critic says: "Jones displayed any
amount of go." He was awarded his 1st XV colours after the match
against Bedford School at Bedford in November. In this hard-fought
game Bedford led at half-time by 15 points to 5, and 25 minutes before
the close of play the score was in Bedford's favour by 28 to 5. Then,
by a wonderful rally, Dulwich scored 23 points in almost as many
minutes, the match finally being drawn 28-28. In _The Alleynian_ for
February, 1913, Paul is thus described in the article, "First XV
Characters":

     A young, heavy and extremely energetic forward. Puts all he knows
     into his play, and is a great worker in the scrum. In the loose,
     however, a lot of his energy is somewhat misdirected, and he has
     an alarming tendency for getting off-side.

[Illustration: Dulwich College 1st XV, 1914-15, of which Paul Jones
was Captain.

_From left to right, top Row_: H. C. Jensen, M. Z. Ariffin, E. A. F.
Hawke, R. L. Paton, J. Paget, J. F. G. Schlund, J. M. Cat, G. H.
Gilkes. _Middle Row_: A. H. H. Gilligan, L. W. Franklin, H. P. M.
Jones, L. Minot, R. S. Hellier. _On Ground_: C. A. R. Hoggan, S. H.
Killick.]

In the 1913-14 season, a daily newspaper, describing the hard-fought
Sherborne _v._ Dulwich match, said: "H. P. M. Jones worked like a
Trojan for the losers, his Pillmanesque hair being seen in the
thick of everything." That season Paul had charge of the Junior games.
He had a way with small boys, and soon fired them with his own zeal.
In an article in _The Alleynian_ for December, 1913, giving counsel to
the juniors, he wrote:

     You must not gas so much on the field, but play the game as hard
     as it can be played. Except in rare circumstances, the only
     players who are to shout are the captain, the scrum-half, and the
     leader of the forwards. Forwards must learn to pack low and shove
     straight and hard. Three-quarters must remember not to run across
     too much, and never to pass the ball when standing still.

There are other useful hints. Looking upon the junior games as the
seed-bed for future crops of 1st XV players, he devoted a great deal
of time and patience to teaching the youngsters how to play. In
addition to matches with other schools and clubs, a feature of the
football season at Dulwich are the side-games. Paul played in three
seasons for the Modern Sixth and Remove, and was captain of the
victorious team in the side-contests, 1914-15. House matches of which
he was only a spectator he often reported for _The Alleynian_.

It was at a meeting of the Field Sports Board on July 28, 1914, that
Paul Jones was elected captain of the 1st XV, being proposed by A. W.
Fischer and seconded by A. E. R. Gilligan. At the same meeting R. B.
B. Jones was elected captain of the gymnasium. Fischer, Basil Jones
and my son have been killed in the War. In a report of a meeting of
the Field Sports Board held on September 29 appears the following: "H.
P. M. Jones then submitted a code of rules to regulate the management
of the school games. These were unanimously approved." In a survey of
the prospects of the 1914-15 football season which appeared in the
October _Alleynian_, Paul paid tribute to the magnificent work done
for football in Dulwich by one of the masters, Mr. W. D. Gibbon, an
old International, who joined the Army shortly after the outbreak of
war and is now Lieutenant-Colonel. Paul wrote:

     The loss of Mr. Gibbon is a staggering-blow. He it is who, more
     than anyone, has given us the very high place we hold among
     Rugby-playing schools. To lose his services is disastrous. Still,
     it would be shameful to grouse over his departure considering
     that he goes to serve his country. Rather let us congratulate him
     on his captaincy in the Worcestershires.

A reformer by temperament, my son was determined to improve the
forward play during his captaincy, as he believed that not enough
attention had been given to the forwards for several seasons at
Dulwich. It was inevitable that the War would derange the football
programme, but though there would be few club matches, the new captain
thought that the "school games" might benefit from this very lack.
Anyhow it was "a unique chance to build them up on a sound basis." He
believed in doing everything to encourage in-school football, meaning
by that the half-holiday games, the side-matches, cup matches, and
such games as Prefects v. School, Boarders v. School, the House
matches, etc. He realised that the first three XV's only include 45
boys, and that there were 600 others whose claims to consideration
were equally great. Moreover, good in-school football would produce a
succession of players for the first XV. Having all this in mind, in
his article in _The Alleynian_ he exhorted the game captains to instil
"a general keenness" and to do their duty unselfishly and
enthusiastically. His survey then proceeds:

     Now as to the teams. In the first place, let it be said at once
     that the outsides are going to be fine this year. Franklin and A.
     H. H. Gilligan, the "star" wings of last year's team, and Minôt,
     undoubtedly the best of the centres, remain to us. Franklin is
     faster than of yore, and still goes down the right touch-line
     like a miniature thunderbolt, brushing aside the opposition like
     so many flies. If he is the thunderbolt, Gilligan, on the other
     wing, is undoubtedly the "greased lightning"; we have not seen so
     fast a school wing for years, and his newly acquired swerve makes
     him all the more dangerous. Minôt has quite mastered the art of
     passing; we have rarely seen "transfers" made so accurately and
     so artistically. He can cut through when required, and altogether
     should make Gilligan a splendid partner. All these three defend
     stoutly. We are also fortunate in retaining the services of Paton
     (2nd XV) for the other centre position; he only wants a little
     more judgment to be quite first-class.

     At half, Evans and A. E. R. Gilligan have left a terrible gap.
     But again fortune is on our side, as we have in Killick (2nd XV)
     a worthy successor to the latter--very quick off the mark, and an
     excellent giver and taker of passes; while Jensen (2nd XV) shows
     promise of becoming a really "class" scrum worker. At present his
     chief fault is inaccuracy of direction, but that will soon
     vanish. Both these halves are excellent in defence. Again, Hooker
     (3rd XV) is a very useful scrum half, but slow in attack. For the
     full-back position we have that wily old veteran Ariffin (2nd
     XV), whose kicking has distinctly improved since last year. He
     tackles as well as ever. Sellick (3rd XV) is a useful back, but
     weak in defence.

     So, gentlemen, outside the scrum all is well. But what of the
     scrum itself? This, we don't deny, is going to be a difficult
     problem. It is not that there isn't plenty of good stuff. Hellier
     and Gilkes (2nd XV), Hoggan, Schlund, Cat and Fischer (all 3rd
     XV)--here is the nucleus of a fine pack, not to mention a host of
     hefty and keen fellows as yet without colours. But the difficulty
     lies in the traditions of the past. Since 1912, our forwards have
     steadily deteriorated as our backs have got better and better. It
     was always the way last year that, if we had a ground wet to any
     degree, we were as good as beaten--look at the Easter term, for
     example. Also, the helplessness of the forwards threw a lot too
     much work on the outsides. This has got to be stopped. You can't
     always get weather to suit your team's outsides. We must learn
     how to play a forward game when it's necessary. We must learn
     to screw, to wheel, to shove and to rush. We repeat, the
     individuals are there, but they have to be trained into a
     combination. The outsides are so brilliant that they can be
     trusted faithfully to fulfil the work of passing and open-side
     attack.

     Our chief efforts this year must be directed to the training of
     the forwards: (1) to play a truer forward game; (2) and not to
     forget how to attack and adopt open-side tactics when necessary.
     Once the teams have re-learnt these lessons, the games will
     automatically do so. In the days of Jordan, Mackinnon and Green
     we won as many matches by our forwards as by our outsides. It is
     fatuous to develop one division at the expense of the other. The
     outsides are going this season to receive all possible attention,
     _but so are the forwards_.

Paul carried out thoroughly the policy here foreshadowed. As a
consequence forward play at Dulwich was absolutely transformed, and
the impulse he gave to it survives to this day. Under his captaincy
the 1st XV had a brilliantly successful season, winning four out of
five of the great school matches, viz.:

  Dulwich v. Merchant Taylors; won 6 points to 5.
   "  v. Sherborne, won 39 points to 9.
   "  v. St. Paul's, lost 16 points to 28.
   "  v. Bedford, won 30 points to 16.
   "  v. Haileybury, won 36 points to 2.

With the exception of 1909-10, when Dulwich won all its school
matches, this 1914-15 record during Paul's captaincy was the best for
a dozen years. Of the football in the school generally the captain,
writing in the December _Alleynian_, said: "Such a uniform standard of
keenness has rarely been witnessed. For this I have to thank the Games
Captains most sincerely. They have done their part most loyally and
unselfishly. The next few years will prove the value of their work."

[Illustration: Dulwich Modern Side XV, 1914-15, Captained by Paul
Jones.

_From left to right, Top Row_: C. F. N. Ambrose, W. B. Jellett, B. A.
J. Mills, G. Walker, C. R. Mountain. _Second Row_, J. C. Corrie, R. W.
Mills, G. Roederwald, L. Paton, H. V. Morlock. Seated: R. L. Paton, A.
H. H. Gilligan, H. P. M. Jones, C. A. R. Hoggan, J. F. G. Schlund. _On
Ground_: L. A. Hotchkiss, R. A. Mayne.]

In a review of the 1st XV characters in _The Alleynian_ for February,
1915, appeared the following:

     H. P. M. Jones (captain) (1912-13-14-15) (12 st. 6 lb.).
     Forward.--One of the keenest captains Dulwich has ever produced.
     An untiring and zealous worker both in the game and organisation,
     from which he has produced one of the finest packs Dulwich has
     seen in recent years. He uses every ounce of his weight to
     advantage, and his knowledge of the game is beyond reproach. He
     is sound in defence, and in the open wherever the ball is you
     will find him. We shall all greatly miss him, but will remember
     that his valuable work for the forwards will mean much to the
     school in the future. (Forward Challenge Cup.)

On February 6 he had the gratification of avenging the defeat by St.
Paul's in the previous November, Dulwich this time being victorious
over the Paulines by 39 to _nil_. With this victory he regarded his
work as captain of football finished, though he played in the
side-games until March. In spite of the difficulties caused by the
war, the season had been a triumphant one. An old member of the 1st
XV, Lieut. A. E. R. Gilligan, writing from his regiment, congratulated
Paul on "the magnificent record of the team--a record which reflects
the utmost credit on its captain. Without your keenness and energy the
side would have been a poor one." Lieut. Gilligan added: "To have
beaten St. Paul's was absolutely a crowning effort. All the 'O.A.'s'
here are overjoyed at our victory. It is simply splendid, and makes up
for the defeat of last term. Best congratulations to all the gallant
team and to its victorious captain."

Paul's football enthusiasm inspired him on one occasion to attempt a
metrical description of a match between Bedford and Dulwich. The
nature of this poetical effusion may be gauged by the following
quotations:

  In November, month of drabness,
  Month of mud and month of wetness,
  Came the red-shirted Bedfordians,
  Came the lusty Midland schoolmen,
  Skilled in every wile of football,
  Swift to run, adept to collar,
  'Gainst the Blue-and-Blacks to battle.
  Know ye that this famous contest
  Has from age to age endured:
  Thirty years and more it's lasted
  'Twixt Bedfordians and Dulwich,
  'Twixt the Midlanders and Southrons.

  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  Behold the game now well in progress;
  See the dashing Dulwich outsides,
  Swift as leopards, brave as lions,
  Down the field come running strongly--
  See the fleet right-wing three-quarter
  Darting through the ranks of Bedford,
  Handing off his fierce opponents,
  Scoring now 'mid deaf'ning uproar,
  'Mid wild shouts of "Well played, Dulwich!"
  'Mid the sweetest of confusion.

He followed with close attention the exploits of the chief Rugby
clubs, especially those hailing from South Wales. His sympathies were
with Wales in the international games. These international matches
enthralled him, and he was a spectator whenever possible of those that
were played in the vicinity of London. One of his ambitions was some
day to don the scarlet jersey with the Prince of Wales's plume and
play for Wales in international contests. To achieve that distinction
and to win his football "blue" for Oxford--these were cherished
ambitions which but for the War would doubtless have been realised.

In the spring of 1915, interviewed by a London football editor, he
explained how Dulwich had built up its great football reputation. Much
of the success he attributed to the system of training.

     We do not divide the school into so many "houses," as they do
     elsewhere, but into "games." We have no fewer than eight senior
     games, which means eight groups of players, about thirty in each
     group; and these are selected so that boys of about the same age
     and weight will meet each other. When we have arranged our games,
     one of the Colours--1st XV men--is told off to coach. Sometimes
     we play as many as nine XV's in one day. With the first team we
     practise what are called "set-pieces." One day we will take the
     forwards, get the scrum properly formed, practise hooking,
     heeling and screwing. We have devoted a lot of attention to
     wheeling. We also practise hand-to-hand passing among the
     forwards.

My son held that brain as well as muscle was needed in athletics.
"Rugby football," he wrote, "tends more and more to become an ideal
combination of scientific actions. Haphazard, clumsy battering is
useless. Your footballer has to be a thinking and a reasoning factor."
He believed that games properly played are invaluable as a training in
character. "They make," he wrote, "not only for courage and
unselfishness, but also for clean living: a sportsman dare not indulge
in excesses."

Nobody could have found greater happiness in a game of football than
did Paul Jones. He revelled in a hard-fought match and seemed
impervious to knocks and bruises. One of his merits as a captain was
that he never lost heart; he would fight doggedly to the last, even
against adverse conditions. He knew, too, how to adapt his tactics
skilfully to varying conditions of play. It was an intoxicating moment
after a victory, for the boys would sweep into the field of play and
carry the captain in triumph shoulder-high from the arena. In
public-school football no animosities are left, no matter how keenly
contested the game. Victor and vanquished dine together after the
match, the best of friends, and the home team escort their visitors to
the railway station. How well I recollect Paul coming home on Saturday
evenings about eight o'clock after a victorious match; his firm, quick
step, and the eager joy that shone in his face! His mother and I
often watched the games at Dulwich, and he would go over every phase
of the play with us, inviting comments and contributing his own. He
was always severe in his condemnation of anything in the shape of
"gallery play," his constant maxim being that the player should
subordinate himself entirely to the side. It was his conviction that
unselfishness was stimulated by football. The amateur athlete, who
forgot himself in the team of which he was a part, and who played and
worked hard for the honour of the game, and without thought of
personal advantage or reward, was the god of his idolatry. Fond as he
was of sport, and highly as he appreciated it as a discipline for
character, he held that the cult of athletics could be overdone, and
that to make a business of what should only be a pastime was a grave
blunder. In an essay which he wrote on "Sport," he characterises the
professional athlete as a man who is engaged "in the vilest of
trades." "Life," he wrote, "is made up of varied interests, and man
has serious work to do in the world. Excess in sport--or in anything
else--puts the notes of the great common chord of life out of
harmony."



CHAPTER IV

CRICKET

  _Your cricketer, right English to the core,
  Still loves the man best he has licked before._

                                      TOM TAYLOR in _Punch_.


Though, as has been said, Paul had no skill in cricket, he was jealous
of the cricket reputation of the College. He knew the game thoroughly.
His cricket "Bible," if I may use the expression, was Prince
Ranjitsinhji's excellent "Jubilee Book of Cricket." He often
accompanied the 1st XI for out-of-town matches, to act as scorer or
reporter. His cricket reports in _The Alleynian_ make racy reading.
The following is taken from a picturesquely-written account of a
victory over Brighton at Brighton in May, 1914:

     When A. E. R. Gilligan appeared at the wicket things became more
     than merry. He was in fine fettle, and from the first made light
     of the bowling, hitting all round the wicket with immense vigour.
     The gem of the day was his treatment of D. S. Johnson's fifth
     over. We seem to recollect reading in our childhood a work of P.
     G. Wodehouse's, in which he remarks that "when a slow bowler
     begins to bowl fast, it is as well to be batting if you can
     manage it." Well, Johnson was--we think--originally a slow
     bowler, and he tried to bowl fast. The result was that traffic
     had to be suspended on the road running past the school. First
     Franklin--who had replaced Shirley, brilliantly caught at
     point--smote Johnson for a three. This brought Gilligan to the
     batting end, and a horse passing outside the ground nearly had
     its life cut short. The next ball just missed the railings, and
     the next almost smashed the fanlight in a house across the road.
     It was then that the police suspended the traffic. Gilligan
     finally played inside a good length ball, and was most
     unfortunately bowled when within two of his century. Hard luck!
     He had been missed twice--once, we admit, badly--but on the whole
     his smiting was admirably timed and placed. He hit three sixes
     and fifteen fours. Franklin had meanwhile been busy, and scored
     22, with three fours. Finally, Brown and Wood put on some 30
     runs, the former being not out for a useful 16, and the latter
     getting 13. Our score was 326 for eight when Gilligan declared.

Appended is a passage from his account of the match with Bedford on
June 6 (in which Dulwich were victorious by 81 runs), describing a
record achievement by A. H. H. Gilligan, one of three brothers who
distinguished themselves in athletics in Dulwich:

     A. H. H. Gilligan was now well over the 170 mark, and had
     therefore beaten the previous school record for the highest
     score. At 190, however, he just touched a short fast ball from
     Cameron, and put the ball into the hands of Dix at second slip:
     283-9-190. The innings closed for 284 in the next over, Paton
     being run out. To score 190 out of 284 is an almost superhuman
     performance. For a man who was only playing his second match this
     season it was a positively marvellous achievement. Gilligan's
     innings was a masterpiece, and at no time did he seem to be in
     the slightest degree troubled by the bowlers, yet the latter were
     distinctly good, as they proved by the fact that they got nine
     men out for 94 runs or less. Gilligan's innings included a six
     and thirty-two fours. The previous best score--against a weak
     scratch side in 1911--was 171 by C. V. Arnold. Gilligan was at
     the wickets in all only two and a quarter hours or so.

The following is from his report of the Sherborne match, which Dulwich
won handsomely:

     Had not the last few wickets been able to put on a few more runs
     all earlier efforts might have been wasted, and certainly all
     would have been altered had it not been for the amazing bowling
     of Paton. His analysis was five for 6--a wonderful achievement.
     The wicket was, indeed, to a certain extent favourable to him,
     but he was able to make the ball swing with his arm and break
     back in a fashion that was quite astounding. A. E. R. Gilligan
     worked with his usual energy and bore the brunt of the bowling.
     While he did not have the success of Paton, he bowled extremely
     well, taking four for 30. All our team fielded so well that to
     specify individuals would be unnecessary. The Sherborne team
     brought off some excellent catches, though their ground-fielding
     was not quite so good. Wheeler bowled very well, and Westlake was
     in splendid form behind the wicket. After the match there were
     the usual handshakings and so forth, and we started back for
     London at five-thirty, getting to Waterloo at about eight
     o'clock. Our visit was quite delightful, and we send our very
     best thanks to our Sherborne friends for their kindness and
     hospitality.

Of the match with St. Paul's School in July, 1914, in which Dulwich
were badly beaten, he wrote:

     We would have given much to win this match, in particular, but at
     least there is the consolation that we lost to a really great
     side which could hardly have been beaten by any school in the
     country. The St. Paul's batting was so splendidly balanced that
     every man could be sure of a 10 or 20, while Skeet and Gibb were
     always certain of really good knocks; and in bowling the wizardry
     of Pearson was in itself enough to conjure any team out.

St. Paul's knocked up 188 in their first innings. Dulwich were
disposed of for 67, largely owing to the bowling of Pearson.

     The Pauline "demon" had now got all our men into a terrible
     "funk," and the result was that wickets began to fall at both
     ends like ninepins: 44-9-3. Then came the best batting of the
     game. Gilkes joined Brown, and quickly showed that he was not the
     man to hide his head before foes, however strong. After smiting
     Roberts to the leg boundary, he did the same to the off, and with
     Brown playing his usually steady game--being particularly smart
     in short runs--the 50 and 60 soon went up. But it could not go
     on, for at 67 Brown, avoiding Scylla, fell into the jaws of
     Charybdis--in other words, keeping Pearson out, was bowled by
     Skeet: 67-10-11. His 11 was a most valuable piece of batting.
     Gilkes, with 12 not out, was top scorer on our side--except for
     Mr. Extras. He had really done extremely well, and played with a
     straight bat at everything--therefore he did not get out. A most
     plucky and useful bit of work this.

     But what of our innings as a whole? Let the heavens fall in
     confusion on us! We decline to discuss the matter. Pearson took
     five wickets for 17, Skeet three for 21, Roberts two for 13. St.
     Paul's fielded well, especially Skeet, Hayne and Gibb. It was
     Pearson's cakewalk-tango bowling that undid us. Note, however,
     that in a second innings we quite redeemed ourselves, Rowbotham
     (31 not out), Paton (29), and Brown (29 not out) playing really
     excellently. Why, oh, why! didn't we do it in the first innings?

His detailed and graphic reports were greatly appreciated by the
members of the 1st XI, and read with relish by the whole school.
Whenever opportunity offered Paul would visit the Oval for a great
cricket match. Lord's not being so accessible, he seldom went to the
M.C.C. ground. Though a poor cricketer himself, he loved the great
summer game and admired those who excelled in it.



CHAPTER V

EDITOR OF "THE ALLEYNIAN."

  _True ease in writing comes from art, not chance._

                                 POPE: "ESSAY ON CRITICISM."


To the school magazine, _The Alleynian_, which is published monthly,
Paul began contributing in 1912. His success in essays having shown
that he had facility in writing, he was asked by those in authority to
report the lectures for the magazine and help to liven up its
contents. His first contribution deals with a lantern lecture on the
"Soudan," delivered before the Science and Photographic Society by
Major Perceval on November 23, 1912. A summary of the lecture is
enlivened by such observations as these:

     A large and very distinguished audience was present. On the back
     benches in particular was a great array of Dulwich "knuts." The
     lecturer was, however, undaunted, though there can be no doubt
     that he felt much awe at the number of mighty men in his
     audience.

From the report of a lecture delivered on January 31, 1913, "The Land
of the Maori," the following quotation is made because of its
allusions to then topical events:

     The lecturer said that in New Zealand the interests of labour
     were so well safeguarded that the country is called "the
     working-man's paradise" (loud cheers), while the women there had
     votes. At this an unparalleled uproar broke out. Cheers and
     hisses were commingled in one tremendous cataclysm of sound.
     Certainly we heard shouts of "Bravo" countered by shrieks of
     "Shame." The lecturer seemed dazed by the dreadful din.

A report of the "Servants' Concert" (28th July, 1913) is in rollicking
vein:

     Success was in the air from the very start. The crush at the
     doors was like Twickenham on the day of the England v. Scotland
     match--we had almost said the Crystal Palace on Cup Final Day. It
     is evident that there is a tremendous amount of talent for the
     stage and the music-halls in the school. To hear Gill give the
     tragic history of "Tommy's Little Tube of Seccotine," or the duet
     on the touching story of "Two Little Sausages," by Savage and
     Livock, would have brought tears to the eyes of a prison warder.
     Then there were F. W. Gilligan to relate his horticultural, and
     brother A. E. R. his zoological reminiscences--works of great
     value to scientists and others. To hear Killick dilate upon the
     dangers of the new disease, the "Epidemic Rag" (which seems to be
     quite as catching as the mumps), Gill upon the risks of the
     piscatorial art, or Savage upon an original Polynesian theme,
     "Zulu Lulu," was to feel like Keats's watcher of the skies, "when
     a new planet swims into his ken." For the admirer of Spanish
     customs there was A. E. J. Inglis (O.A.) to sing, as only he can,
     the Toreador's song; while for the Cockney there was Killick to
     give, in his own inimitable fashion, that really touching little
     ballad "My Old Dutch," Ould Oireland being well catered for by
     Livock in "A Little Irish Girl." The pianoforte solos by Nalder,
     Jacob and Shirley were all excellent and thoroughly well
     appreciated, as was our old friend, "Let's have a Peal," by the
     First XI.

     And now for the "star" performance of the evening. Positively for
     one night only, the Dulwich College Dramatic Society were down to
     give us W. G. O. Gill's one-act farce, "The Lottery Ticket." This
     fairly brought down the house. It went "with a bang," as actors
     say, from the very start. The great point about it was that all
     the performers forgot that they were acting, and were so
     perfectly natural. There was not a hitch. Killick, as a withered
     old Shylock, gave a really masterly representation of ancient
     villainy. Evans was admirably suited with the rôle of a dashing
     young man-about-town. The way he took his gloves off was worth a
     fortune in itself. We felt that there must be many degrees of
     blue blood in his veins. His back-chat repartee was far better
     than that of Mr. F. E. Smith, K.C. If Gill and Waite are in the
     future ever in need of a berth they should, judging by their
     performances in this play, apply to Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree for
     parts as a dilapidated charwoman and unwashed office-boy
     respectively. The topical allusions in the play were all
     thoroughly well made and appreciated. We might suggest that it is
     not the custom "in polite circles" to open and read other
     people's telegrams, but for a hardened old reprobate like Mr.
     Grabbit we can feel no pity, while we can forgive anything to a
     Principal Boy like Mr. Knowall.

     It is an open secret that the concert was organised by Killick.
     We take this opportunity of congratulating him heartily. From
     what rumour says, we take it that the Powers-that-be are very
     pleased with the concert. So are we. It was a complete success
     from start to finish. It is to be hoped that it will become a
     regular institution, especially considering the object it has in
     view--to give pleasure to those who have not often the chance of
     it.

In 1913 he was appointed secretary and treasurer of the magazine, and
a few months later he became one of the editors. Throughout 1913 and
1914 he was the chief contributor to its pages. Reporting a lady's
lecture on Tibet (October 17, 1913), he wrote:

     But, at least, the Tibetans can teach us something--simplicity in
     ceremonies. For when Miss Kemp went to see the palace of the King
     all the decoration she saw there was a simple table and chair. A
     Tibetan kitchen was a very popular slide. In that country they
     apparently use a golf-bag to brew tea in, and cast-off bicycle
     wheels for plates. There prevails in Tibet some element of
     democracy, for Miss Kemp's cook was also a J.P., a Civil Servant,
     and held other such offices of fame. One of her assistants was a
     positive marvel--a human carpet-sweeper. If the floor was to be
     brushed he would simply roll over and over on it and clean it
     with his clothes! The Tibetans have no motor-bikes and no S. F.
     Edges, their fastest conveyance being a yâk, a species of ox,
     which moves at an average speed of two miles an hour (with the
     high gear in), and can slow down to an infinite extent. However,
     the nature of the country would make high speeds rather
     dangerous, as constantly you find yourself in danger of falling
     over precipices, down crevasses, or of being overwhelmed by
     falling boulders, for the mountain lands are covered with great
     glaciers. It was these mountain views that were especially
     magnificent. They were, for the most part, taken with
     tele-photographic lenses at a distance of fifty or sixty miles.

To the November _Alleynian_ he contributed a racy and rattling parody
of the modern sensational drama entitled _Red Blood: a Western Drama
in Two Acts_, in which the dramatis personæ are an English cowboy
(heir to a million dollars without knowing it), an Indian chief (his
friend), a wicked uncle, a murderer, and a New York detective. His
historical tastes peep out in his report of a lecture delivered 7th
November, 1913, on the famous mediæval doctor, Pareil (1510-1590).
From this report the following is extracted:

     Much interest attaches to the historic associations of Pareil's
     life. As a famous surgeon he was in constant attendance on
     figures renowned in history, personages like Coligny (who was
     murdered by the mob of Paris while recovering from an amputation
     of Pareil's), Erasmus, Servetus, Leonardo da Vinci, and Catherine
     de Medici. Like Chaucer's doctour of physik, Pareil knew well the
     works of "Olde Ypocras," Galen, Avycen, etc., the famous
     physicians whose names have come down from history, but he was no
     pedantic scholar, preferring to do his own thinking. A stout
     Protestant, his last act was to beseech the Catholic Archbishop
     of Lyons, who was holding Paris against the assaults of Henry of
     Navarre (with the result that the population of the city was
     perishing by thousands), to open the gates and save the
     inhabitants, but he beseeched in vain.

     Altogether a remarkable figure, this old Pareil. Looked at in
     perspective, and in his era, it is clear how great a man he was.
     For he, first of all men in medicine, freed the world from the
     influence of pedantic tradition, and paved the way for modern
     medical science. Then all honour to his name, for, as the Master
     put it in proposing the vote of thanks to Mr. Paget, the art of
     healing is the greatest boon which man can give to the world.

The last lecture he reported was delivered by Mr. F. M. Oldham, chief
Science Master at the College, on "Primitive Man," on 3rd April, 1914.
From this report the following extract is taken:

     Our main knowledge of man in the earliest stages of his existence
     comes from the examination of river mud. Mr. Oldham showed how
     different strata are built up by the river on its bed, and how in
     the lowest of these strata there will be found the oldest relics
     of man. In this way we are able to declare that the difference
     between the earliest man and his immediate followers lay in the
     question of polishing his flint instruments. That is to say, the
     earliest or palæolithic man had his implements unpolished; his
     successors polished them, often to a beautifully smooth surface.
     This Mr. Oldham illustrated with a series of films--your pardon,
     slides--of the arrow-heads made by palæolithic and neolithic man.
     It was a natural step, once man had learned to polish his
     instruments, and when he was advanced enough to try to form
     conceptions of beauty for himself, that he should draw or scratch
     pictures on stone. Several of these Mr. Oldham showed on the
     screen; some of them are extraordinarily well executed and show
     real artistic feeling. We would particularly mention one such
     representation of a reindeer, and another of a man stalking a
     bison.

     After the cave-dwellers' epoch comes that of huts, wood and
     bronze. Man in this stage is really but little different from
     what he is to-day. He has even the wit to construct himself
     lake-dwellings, consisting of huts placed on rafts and secured
     temporarily with large stones sunk in the lake-bed.
     Characteristic of this period are the great tolmens and monoliths
     found all over the world. Neolithic man had, indeed, sometimes
     constructed for himself a hut of stone, as Dartmoor will testify,
     but the tolmens are of quite different origin, and indicate a
     distinctly greater mental development, in that they are usually
     put up as monuments to great men or events. Of the same nature
     are the great mounds or "barrows" that abound in Ireland; inside
     there was a sort of crypt in which chiefs were buried. The
     monoliths were constructed, as doubtless the Pyramids also were,
     by rolling the great stones up an inclined bank of earth
     previously built up.

Throughout 1914 Paul was the mainstay of the magazine. The May number
contains from his pen exhaustive reports of two house matches
(football), a shrewd commentary on the Junior School Cup matches, and
a long report of a lecture. For the July number he wrote ten pages of
cricket reports, and an account of the swimming competition. He was
also responsible for the finances of the magazine, continuing to act
as secretary and treasurer. All this time he was preparing for his
Oxford scholarship. If he owed much to Dulwich, the College also owed
something to him. No boy ever worked harder for it, or consecrated
himself with more entire devotion to its welfare.



CHAPTER VI

PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND THE WAR

  _Now all the youth of England are on fire._
                                     SHAKESPEARE: "HENRY V."


To _The Alleynian_ for October, 1914, Paul contributed an editorial
article on the War that had then begun to rage in its destructive
fury. Taking the view that "this war had to come sooner or later," he
wrote:

     When one nation has a world-wide Empire embracing a fifth of the
     globe, founded on principles of absolute liberty for all whom it
     contains, and when another, built up by the force of
     circumstances on a basis of military despotism, also aspires to a
     different sort of world-power, and challenges the first nation,
     whose principles it abhors as much as its own are abhorred--in
     these circumstances it is hopeless to talk of reconciliation till
     one or the other is down. Actually, Germany's monstrous conduct
     in violating the neutrality of a small, industrious and
     inoffensive Power--a neutrality to which, be it marked, Germany
     was as much a partner as England or France--has put her
     hopelessly in the wrong with the civilised world. But that does
     not alter the fact that the War is primarily one for political
     existence. Either the despotism of Potsdam or the constitutional
     government of Westminster must survive. We, more even than Russia
     or France, are fighting for our very existence.

     Things are, indeed, very favourable to us and to our Allies.
     Through the brutal but clumsy blundering of Prussian diplomats,
     Europe has been long awaiting the conflagration; every move in
     the game has been brought out long ago. Besides, Germany
     undoubtedly counted on our domestic troubles and our pacific
     tendencies to keep us out of this conflict. They imagined France
     could easily be wiped out while Russia's vast bulk was slowly
     mobilising, and that the Russians would then be held up by the
     victorious legions pouring back from Paris. Then in, say, ten
     years they would turn on England and wipe her from the map. Our
     entrance into the War now has not only braced the whole moral
     fibre of France, Russia, Belgium and Serbia, but has strangled
     German commerce and held up her food supply by means of our
     command of the seas. Thus all the enemy plans have been thrown
     into confusion. We would be indeed foolish if we did not realise
     our position--what it means to ourselves, to Europe, and to the
     world. Having won the toss on a hard wicket, we are not going to
     put Germany in. We must fight to the death. The law is "Eat or be
     eaten."

     In these circumstances we call on Dulwich College to realise its
     duties to the State. Nothing--not work nor games--must be allowed
     to stand before the Corps till the War is over. Special drills
     and parades, extra route marches, all these must be and ought to
     be looked forward to cheerfully and willingly. The splendid
     number of recruits shows that the school is not going to fail in
     its duty here. We are not going to indulge in theories and
     jingo-patriotism, but call on you with deadly seriousness--the
     British Empire, the British principles of liberty, all are at
     stake. If we go down now we go down for ever. Germany is said to
     have called up every male between the ages of fifteen and sixty.
     If they can do that, surely we ought to be able to reply. Let
     that voluntary system which is the glory of our armies and navies
     carry us through now! We call on every one in the School to join
     the Corps at once.

Nothing was finer in the first months of the War than the rally of the
manhood of Great Britain to the call of the country in its time of
need. All classes, rich and poor, patrician and peasant, employer and
workman, were uplifted by the great occasion. Through the influence of
patriotism, the recognition by all sorts and conditions of our people
of the honourable obligation of fidelity to the pledged word of
Britain, combined with a chivalric desire to champion the cause of
weak, unoffending Belgium against the Teutonic bully--there was
released in this country a flood of noble idealism and pure emotion,
the memory of which those who lived during that spiritual awakening
will never forget. No section of the community rose more finely to the
height of the occasion than the athletes and scholars from our public
schools and universities. Nobly did they respond to the call voiced by
one of their number, R. E. Vernède (an old Pauline, now sleeping in a
soldier's grave in France):

  Lad, with the merry smile and the eyes
    Quick as the hawk's and clear as the day;
  You, who have counted the game the prize,
    Here is the game of games to play.
    Never a goal--the captains say--
  Matches the one that's needed now;
    Put the old blazer and cap away--
  England's colours await your brow.

  Man, with the square-set jaws and chin,
    Always, it seems, you have moved to your end
  Sure of yourself, intent to win
    Fame and wealth and the power to bend.
    All that you've made you're called to spend--
  All that you've sought you're asked to miss--
  What's ambition compared with this:
    That a man lay down his life for his friend?

Exulting in the response of the athletes, Paul Jones found his faith
in the value of games confirmed by this memorable rally to the Flag.
His last contribution to _The Alleynian_ was inspired by it. Shortly
after he joined the Army he wrote to the magazine a letter (published
anonymously in May, 1915) under the caption "Flannelled Fools and
Muddied Oafs." In this contribution he sings a pæan in praise of the
amateur athlete. After reminding his readers of pre-War denunciations
of "the curse of athletics," he asks, "What of athletics now?"

     At present, we see that the poor, despised athlete or
     sportsman--call him what you will--is coming to the front,
     practically and metaphorically, in a way which makes one wonder
     if, for the higher purposes of duty, athletics are not really the
     very best of all systems of training. When we look at the matter
     in the broadest light, the explanation shines forth clearly. All
     learning and all business are in the end simply and solely
     _selfish_. For example, you work hard for a scholarship at Oxford
     or Cambridge--why? So that you can obtain _for
     yourself_--(underline these words, Mr. Printer, please!)--the
     advantages of 'Varsity life and culture, and to the ultimate end
     that you may be better fitted to make _your own_ way in life. Of
     course, this is necessary, but life is always very sordid in its
     details, and the more civilised we become, the more apparent is
     that sordidity. In fact, it is only on our amateur playing-fields
     that we become really unselfish. For here we play for a team or a
     side; and for the success of that side--which success, by the
     way, is in no sense material or selfish--we are prepared to take
     all sorts of pains, to scorn delights and live laborious days. It
     is the clearest manifestation of the simple, unsophisticated man
     coming to the front and tearing aside for a brief moment the
     cloud of materialism with which civilisation has been enveloping
     him.

     Nothing but athletics has succeeded in doing this sort of work in
     England. Religion has failed, intellect has failed, art has
     failed, science has failed. It is clear why: because each of
     these has laid emphasis on man's _selfish_ side; the saving of
     _his own_ soul, the cultivation of _his own_ mind, the pleasing
     of _his own_ senses. But your sportsman joins the Colours because
     in his games he has felt the real spirit of unselfishness, and
     has become accustomed to give up all for a body to whose service
     he is sworn. Besides this, he has acquired the physical fitness
     necessary for a campaign. These facts explain the grand part
     played by sport in this War; they also explain why the amateur
     has done so enormously better than the professional.

"Let us therefore," is his injunction, "take off our hats to the
amateur athlete, who is one of the brightest figures in England
to-day. Let us indeed not forget that it is not in any sense only the
athletes who have gone, but let us remember that in proportion no
class of men has seen its duty so clearly, and done it so promptly,
in the present crisis. We suggest that this War has shown the training
of the playing-fields of the Public Schools and the 'Varsities to be
quite as good as that of the class-rooms; nay, as good? Why, far
better, if training for the path of Duty is the ideal end of
education."

Here, as always, Paul distinguished between the amateur athlete and
the professional athlete. For the latter his scorn was unmitigated,
and he could not endure Association football with its paid players. He
also loathed the betting element that defiled the Soccer game.

This letter was his last contribution to _The Alleynian_. Its
strictures are far too sweeping; it has the dogmatism and the note of
certitude to which youth is prone. But it is animated by a fine
spirit. Very characteristic is the emphasis placed in it on the ideas
of duty and unselfishness. The passion for sacrifice was in his
blood.



CHAPTER VII

TASTES AND HOBBIES

  _Variety's the very spice of life._
                                         COWPER: "THE TASK."


Many of our son's vacations were spent in Llanelly, South Wales,
where his mother's and my own kindred dwell. Llanelly is not a
beautiful town--industrial centres seldom are--but Paul loved every
aspect of it--the busy works, the spacious bay with its great
stretches of sandy beach, the green and hilly hinterland, dotted
with snug farmhouses and cheerful-looking cottages. Accompanied by
his cousin Tom, for whom he had an intense affection, and under the
guidance of his uncle, Mr. Edwin Morgan, a consulting engineer of
high repute, he visited in process of time every industrial
establishment in the neighbourhood--steel works, foundries,
engineering shops and tinplate works. His insatiable curiosity, his
desire to know the reason for everything, his alert interest in all
the processes of manufacture, were noted with smiling admiration by
managers and workmen. His last visit to Llanelly was in the summer
of 1914. We joined him there in the third week of August. Clear in
recollection is an incident that took place during our stay there.
One sunny afternoon we were out in Carmarthen Bay in a little
tug-boat and hailed a large four-masted vessel that had dropped
anchor and was awaiting a pilot. She had just arrived from Archangel
with timber. Her crew, athirst for news about the War, were most
grateful for a bundle of newspapers. Paul thrilled at this meeting
at sea with a vessel that had come direct from Russia, and he
followed with fascinated interest the conversation between the
tugboatmen and the crew of the barque. Little did any of us think
then that the War was destined to claim Paul's life!

Celtic on his mother's side and mine, he was proud of the fact that he
sprang from an "old and haughty nation, proud in arms." On many of his
school books he wrote in bold lettering: "Cymru am byth!" ("Wales for
ever!") His instinctive love of Wales was strengthened by his visits
to Llanelly and by holidays on the Welsh countryside, where, amid
romantic surroundings and far from the fret and fever of modern life,
he obtained an insight into rural ways and things. Welsh love of music
and Welsh prowess in football also appealed powerfully to him.

Like most boys he went through the usual run of hobbies: silkworms,
carpentry, stamp-collecting, photography, parlour railways.
Thoroughness was his quality even in his hobbies. He had the
note-taking habit in marked degree. Even as a small boy on a long
railway journey he would carefully record in his notebook the name of
every station through which the train passed, and then, on reaching
his destination, would work out the distances by maps and books, and
finally draw an outline showing the route with the principal stations
and junctions marked. The same passion for classifying facts made him,
as soon as he began to follow cricket closely, compile tables showing
the batting and bowling averages of the leading players. Similarly
with football. He was familiar with the record of the leading Rugby
clubs and the characteristics of the principal players.

Machinery had for him the fascination of life in motion. He would gaze
with rapture at the rhythmic movement of a flywheel and was thrilled
by the harmonious movement of cogs and eccentrics, pistons and
connecting-rods, all "singing like the morning stars for joy that they
are made." As a child visiting a printing office he used to clap his
hands with delight at the sight of "the wheels all turning." For
engines of all sorts he had a passion. At Plymouth he loved to watch
the great G.W.R. locomotives steaming into Millbay terminus, and would
often engage the driver or stoker in conversation. After our removal
to London he spent part of one vacation in an engineering shop. When
he was fifteen we bought for him a small gas-engine which was fixed in
an upper room. Clad in overalls he spent many a happy hour with this
engine, generating electricity which he used sometimes for lighting,
sometimes for driving the engine and train on his miniature railway.
Here are extracts from one of his vacation diaries:

     JANUARY, 1912

     _January 1._--Went with Mother to first night of _Nightbirds_ at
     the Lyric. Workman and Constance Driver excellent; Farkoa also
     very good.

     _January 2-5._--Busy making switchboard at home. At the
     engineering workshop I am starting on a steel rod; cutting with
     hack saw, cutting 5/16 standard Whitworth thread; grooving it.
     All this on a Drummond 3-1/2-inch lathe.

     _January 6._--Heard of 4 v. 20 a.h. accumulator for 10s. 6d. I
     must buy it. Splendid acc. it is. Finished switchboard; all
     correct; polished up meters and instruments. [Here is diagram of
     connections.]

     Evening.--At _Tales of Hoffmann_, Opera House, with Mother. Good
     performance. First and third acts excellent; second ("Barcarolle"
     act) poor. Orchestra superb. Felice Lyne, Pollock, Victoria
     Fer--artistes of great promise. Renaud a master.

     _January 7._--Wrote Economic Electric for new dynamo. Received
     letter from "Humber" recommending motor bike. I will probably buy
     one later on, or a "Triumph."

     _January 10._--Took my old accumulator to electrician. To my
     great pleasure he said there was nothing wrong, only wanted
     filling and charging.

     _January 11._--Tried my acc. on the train, running through
     switchboard; a great success. Engine runs very well. All
     switchboard connections absolutely correct; the reading when
     running: volts 3.5 to 4.25, amps. 1 to 2.5.

     _January 12._--To Bassett Lowke's and bought wagon; yellow
     colour, red lettering; splendid model.

     _January 13._--At matinée _Orpheus in the Underground_, at His
     Majesty's. Exceedingly good show. Courtice Pounds, L. Mackinder
     and Lottie Venn--all first rate; good voices and not afraid to
     use them.

     _January 15._--To Hippodrome. The feature two amazingly clever
     Chimpanzees. Leo Fall's _Eternal Waltz_ a pretty operetta.

     _January 16._--Final golf match between Dad and myself. Dad wins
     match and rubber by 1 up.

     _January 17._--Got back my P.O. bank book. Total now £6 3s.
     Discovered slight leakage at joint between the cylinder and
     combustion head of the gas engine, owing to wearing away of
     asbestos washer, so causing a very small but appreciable
     diminution of compression. Made a temporary stopping with
     vaseline.

     Evening.--Dad and I to _Tales of Hoffmann_, at the Opera House.
     This time a magnificent performance.

     _January 19._--Dynamo arrived. A beautiful machine.

     _January 20._--Went with Dad to International football match,
     England _v._ Wales, at Twickenham. Score--England, 8 points;
     Wales, _nil_. A splendid game. Wales beaten chiefly owing to
     their very poor three-quarters. Little to choose between the
     packs.

     _January 31._--Having re-started music with a good teacher, a
     pupil of Professor Hambourg, I have practised very hard on the
     piano these last few days.

In his enthusiasm for engineering he devoured books like "Engineering
Wonders of the World," "How it Works," "How it is Made," "Engineering
of To-day," "Mechanical Inventions of To-day"; also books on wireless
telegraphy and aviation. A great lover of books, he liked on off-days
to visit London bookshops and rummage their shelves. Very proud he was
of his purchases during these excursions. From time to time he would
have a run round the museums and picture galleries of London or take a
trip to Hampton Court--Wolsey's palace and William III's home--a spot
dear to him for its links with history and for the beauty of its
surroundings. He was always enthralled at the British Museum by the
Rosetta Stone--that key by means of which Champollion unlocked for the
modern world the long-hidden secret of Egypt's ancient civilisation.

A subject which he pursued keenly for a couple of years--from fifteen
to seventeen--and which held him in fascinated wonder, was Astronomy,
a branch of knowledge that happens to be strongly represented among my
books. Often on starry nights he would be a watcher of the heavens.

  Many a night from yonder ivied casement,
      Ere he went to rest,
  Did he look on great Orion, sloping
      Slowly to the west.
  Many a night he saw the Pleiads, rising
      Thro' the mellow shade,
  Glitter like a swarm of fireflies, tangled
      In a silver braid.

It has been stated that most of Paul's vacations were spent in Wales,
but in 1913 he went farther afield, accompanying his mother, his
brother and myself on a tour in Germany. He was enraptured with this,
his first visit to the Continent. On our outward journey we halted at
Brussels, in those days a bright and happy city with nothing in its
cheerful, prosperous air to suggest that in less than a year there
would descend upon it the baleful shadow of the Great War. Much in the
old Germany appealed powerfully to our son, and even of the new
Germany, with its energy and its zeal for learning, he was something
of an admirer. But he hated in modern Germany its brazen materialism
and boastful arrogance. He attributed the change in the spirit of the
German people to the hardness of their Prussian taskmasters, whose
yoke was submissively borne because of the glamour of the military
victories achieved since 1866, and the rapid growth in wealth that had
followed the attainment of German unity. He read and spoke German and
was familiar with the literature and history of the country. Two great
Germans, Goethe and Wagner, he intensely admired. It so happened that
we were at Frankfort on the centenary of Goethe's death. Paul visited
the Goethe house and spent a couple of hours examining its souvenirs
with loving interest. He liked to see the places and the houses
associated with the names or lives of great men. On our homeward
journey down the Rhine he left us at Bonn to visit the house where
Beethoven was born, joining-us subsequently at Cologne.

This holiday in the Rhineland and the Black Forest brought deep
enjoyment to him. His enthusiasm at his first sight of the Rhine was
unrestrained, and the morning after our arrival he plunged into its
waters for a swim. Professor Cramb, writing of the love of Germans for
the Rhine, quotes a letter from Treitschke, in which that fire-eating
historian said on the eve of his leaving Bonn: "To-morrow I shall see
the Rhine for the last time. The memory of that noble river will keep
my heart pure and save me from sad or evil thoughts throughout all the
days of my life." Paul in a marginal note writes: "Wonderful
attraction of the Rhine. I have felt it myself, though not a German."

He got on excellently with the German people. One Sunday afternoon,
doing the famous walk from Triberg to Hornberg, he had a long and
friendly talk with a German reservist in the latter's native tongue,
about the relations of Germany and England. Both agreed that war
between the two nations would be madness, and both dismissed it as to
the last degree improbable, but the German said significantly that he
feared the Crown Prince was a menace to peace.

In the spring of the following year (1914) Paul spent Easter week with
me in Paris. Never had I seen the French capital more beautiful or
happier-seeming than in that bright and joyous springtime. Who could
have dreamt then that war was only three months distant? Paris was a
revelation to Paul. He crowded a lot of sight-seeing into half a dozen
busy days. All that was noble or beautiful in Art as in Nature
appealed instinctively to him. I can see him now at the Louvre gazing
rapt from various angles at that glorious piece of statuary the Venus
of Milo. His knowledge of history made his visit to the glittering
palace of Louis XIV at Versailles an undiluted pleasure. Fascinated by
the genius of Napoleon, he spent a long time at the Invalides gazing
down on the sarcophagus within which the conqueror of Europe sleeps
his last sleep.

Later in the year he and two other Dulwich boys arranged to spend
three weeks of the summer vacation in the house of a professor at
Rouen. They were to have left London on the second week in August.
This hopeful project was frustrated by the rude shock of war.



CHAPTER VIII

MUSIC

  _Music is a kind of inarticulate, unfathomable speech, which leads us
  to the edge of the Infinite, and lets us for moments gaze into that._

                                                    CARLYLE.


Paul began the study of music at an early age. He had natural aptitude
for it and an unerring ear. As a little boy he used to sing with much
expression in a sweet, clear voice. He received great assistance from
his mother in his musical studies. After he had turned fifteen, music
became one of his main interests. Indeed, if we except football, it
was his master passion, and, unlike football, it could be pursued
throughout the year. Whenever his scholastic studies and his athletic
activities permitted, he would spend his leisure at the piano. With
characteristic thoroughness he studied the lives as well as the works
of the great composers. During the Grand Opera season he was a
frequent visitor to Covent Garden Theatre and the performances of the
_Nibelungen Ring_ were for him a fountain of pure delight. He was also
a regular attendant with his mother at the Queen's Hall and Albert
Hall concerts. Ballad singing did not appeal to him in the same degree
as operatic and orchestral music. Thanks to instinctive gifts and
assiduous practice he became a scholarly and an accomplished musician.
A brilliant pianist, his playing was marked by power and passion, and
the colour and glow of an intense and sensitive personality. He could
memorise the most intricate composition, and would play for hours
without a note. Music was almost a religion with him: he found in it
solace, joy, inspiration.

Above all other musicians, he reverenced Beethoven and Wagner. For
Beethoven's music, with its spiritualised emotion and divine
harmonies, his admiration knew no bounds. Of the famous symphonies he
assigned first place to that in C minor, No. 5, which he thought stood
alone in the art of musical expression, peerless and unapproachable, a
unique emanation from the soul and mind of man. "It holds us in its
grasp," wrote Wagner of this composition, "as one of the rarer
conceptions of the master, in which Passion, aroused by Pain as its
original ground-tone, raises itself upward on the stepping-stone of
conciliation and exaltation to an outburst of Joy conscious of
Victory." Paul loved to play the Fifth Symphony as well as to hear it
performed by an orchestral band. When playing it he seemed to lose
touch with earth and to be transported to celestial heights. In his
marginalia he compares the methods of expression of Shakespeare with
those of Beethoven. That able critic, the late Professor Dowden, in
some penetrating observations on Shakespeare's works, wrote:

     In the earliest plays the idea is at times hardly sufficient to
     fill out the language; in the middle plays there seems a perfect
     balance and equality between the thought and its expression; in
     the latest plays this balance is disturbed by the preponderance,
     or excess, of ideas over the means of giving them utterance.

After underlining this passage Paul made the comment: "An
extraordinary coincidence occurs to me in that the same thing happens
with Beethoven, the greatest of the absolute musicians. Anyone must
see that in the last symphony (No. 9 in D minor) he seems often at a
loss how to put his feelings into shape (or sound), as though musical
style up to his time could not express the intensity of his ideas.
Hence in this symphony there is a distinct lack of balance--a defect
which is absent from the works of his middle period (_e.g._, Symphony
No. 5 or No. 7)."

Another Beethoven work that he loved was the Third Symphony in E Flat,
with its epic opening; the mournful beauty of its funeral march, now
sad, calm, solemn like a moonless, starless night, now shining with
gleams of hope and faith; its crisp and lively scherzo; and the
triumphant finale, a veritable ecstasy of divine joy. My son as an
historical scholar found a peculiar attraction in this symphony by
reason of its association with Napoleon Buonaparte, for it was
inspired by Beethoven's belief--formed in those days when the soldier
of the Revolution was regarded as the liberator of peoples and the
enemy only of the old feudal order--that Napoleon was marked out by
destiny to realise Plato's ideal of government. One recalls how the
act of Napoleon in proclaiming himself Emperor shattered this
illusion; how Beethoven erased the fallen hero's name from the
title-page of his score, withheld the "Eroica" for a time, and then
gave it to the world in 1805 as "An Heroic Symphony composed in memory
of a great man." When Beethoven heard of Napoleon's death at St.
Helena, he said he had already composed his funeral ode 17 years
before. Of this _marche funèbre_ M. Ballaique wrote: "It owes its
incomparable grandeur to the beauty of the melodic idea and also to a
peculiarity of rhythm. At the first half of each bar there is a halt,
a pause, which seems to punctuate each station, each painful slip or
descent on the way to the illustrious tomb."

Of Wagner, Paul was a whole-hearted worshipper. He was familiar with
the myths, legends and folk-poems from which Wagner drew his themes,
and he exulted in the master's superb treatment of them. Never, he
thought, had music and ideas been more felicitously blended than by
Wagner, whatever the theme--the storm-tost soul of "the Flying
Dutchman," to whom redemption came at last through loyalty and
compassion; the conflict between sensuality and love fought out in the
arena of Tannhäuser's mind; the cosmic glories of the Ring with the
resplendent figures of Siegfried and Brunhilde; the self-dedication of
Parsifal, the Sir Percival of our Arthurian legends, whom "The sweet
vision of the Holy Grail drew from all vain-glories, rivalries and
earthly heats." Into the glowing music of Wagner my son read lessons
in renunciation, the sordidness of the lust for gold, the sublimity of
pure human love, the redemptive power of self-sacrifice. The
occasional voluptuousness of the music was so transmuted in the
alembic of his temperament that for him the sensual element was
eliminated. An incident illustrative of his devotion to Wagner is
worth recording. In the summer of 1913, during our holiday tour in
Germany, we had for part of the time our headquarters at
Assmannshausen, a smiling village sheltering snugly at the foot of
vine-clad hills on the right bank of the Rhine. That great river is at
its best at Assmannshausen; the broad current here flows swiftly over
a stony bed. Day and night one's ears are filled with the music of the
rushing waters hastening impetuously to the distant sea as though
eager to lose themselves in its infinite embrace. One evening the
guests at the hotel arranged a concert, and to our surprise--for we
knew how diffident he was--Paul, evidently moved by the _genius loci_,
volunteered to take part in it. When the time came he advanced to the
piano through the crowded room and, with an elbow resting on the
instrument, astonished the audience by a few explanatory words. He
said he was going to play the "Ride of the Valkyries," and explained
what Wagner meant to convey by that wild, stormy music. Then seating
himself at the instrument, he proceeded to play the "Ride" from
memory. His execution had a verve whose charm was irresistible. It
was a lovely summer night. Through the open windows of the
concert-room one caught glimpses of the moonlight quivering on the
waters of the swift-flowing Rhine. Nothing could be heard save the
river's melodious roar softened by distance, and this enchanting music
interpreted by one who was saturated with its spirit, both sounds
blending harmoniously like the double pipe of an ancient Greek flute
player. All of us felt the spell of the scene and the occasion.
Everyone listened tense and silent until the descending chromatic
passage at the end when the "Valkyries" vanish into space, the echo of
their laughter dies away, and the "Ride" ends in a sound like the
fluttering of wings in the distance. When Paul rose from the piano the
pent-up feelings of the audience found expression in enthusiastic
applause.

In the spring of 1913, just after he had turned 17, he wrote the
following appreciation of Wagner for the _Llanelly Star_:

     The 22nd of May, 1913, marks the centenary of an event of supreme
     importance in the annals of music. To-day just one hundred years
     ago was born at Leipzig Richard Wagner, king of the music-drama,
     who towers above all other operatic composers like some lofty
     mountain rising from the midst of a dull and featureless plain.
     Such a colossal revolution as was effected by Wagner in Art can
     hardly find a parallel in any walk of life. What, in brief, was
     the scope of Wagner's reforms? To answer this question it is
     necessary to glance at the state in which the opera stood in
     pre-Wagner days. From the days of Scarlatti the opera had
     consisted of a number of semi-detached solos, duets or choruses
     to which tunes were set. These pieces were joined up by any
     jumble of notes sung by the characters on the stage, usually with
     no artistic meaning whatsoever, known as the recitative. In a
     word, the opera was a mere ballad concert. The recitative was so
     utterly foolish and meaningless, as a rule, that men like
     Beethoven and Weber, when they composed music-dramas, abolished
     it altogether, and composed what is known as "Singspiel"--that
     is, a number of ballads connected simply by spoken words. (The
     well-known Gilbert and Sullivan operettas are really Singspiels
     in a lesser form.) Thus it is obvious that the meaning of the
     opera--that is, a drama whose significance is made more clear by
     the aid of music suitable to the situation in hand--had been
     entirely lost sight of.

     In the average French or Italian opera, or in the singspiels, all
     that matters is a number of songs, ballads or arias--call them
     what you will--entirely disconnected and quite destructive to the
     continuity that must be the essence of every drama. This
     continuity is an absolute necessity to every spoken play; imagine
     the effect if Shakespeare or Ibsen had written little pieces of
     rhyming verse joined up by any jumble of nonsensical prose!
     Neglect of this fact led every opera composer before Wagner
     astray. We can imagine a pre-Wagner composer telling his
     librettist, "Now, mind you arrange that in certain parts the
     words will allow me to put in arias or choruses." In short, the
     situation was summed up in Wagner's famous phrase, "The means of
     expression (music) has been made the end, while the end of
     expression (the drama) has been made the means." Now this state
     of affairs is clearly wrong. If there is no dramatic idea kept as
     end to work to, then what is the use of writing opera at all? Why
     not be content with song-cycles or ballads, or lieder like
     Brahms's and Schumann's?

     There are no divisions into aria and recitative in Wagner's
     operas, but dramatic continuity is retained by the voices of the
     characters singing music the succession of whose notes is
     determined by the emotional requirements of the moment.
     Meanwhile, the orchestra forms a sort of musical background by
     giving forth music which exactly suits the dramatic situation.
     The orchestra, in a word, as Wagner himself said of _Tristan und
     Isolde_, forms an emotional tide on which the voice floats like a
     boat on the waters. The essential relevance of the music to the
     dramatic situation is obtained, as a rule, by means of what are
     known as "leading motives." These form the basis of all Wagner's
     reforms. A leading motive is simply a musical phrase suggestive
     of a dramatic idea. Wagner's motives are marvellous in their
     descriptive and soul-stirring power. They seem to indicate not
     only the pith, but the utmost depths of the heart of the ideas
     which they represent. It is this that makes Wagner so very like
     Shakespeare. All can appreciate him, yet he is above all
     criticism, universal in his appeal.

     Who but Wagner could make us feel the awful tragedy of
     Siegfried's death, the calm of the primeval elements, the pompous
     yet somewhat venerable character of the Mastersingers, the agony
     of Tristan's delirium, the superb majesty of Valhalla, or the
     free, noble nature of Parsifal? Even when Wagner uses motives
     comparatively little, writing rather "freely," as in _Tristan und
     Isolde_, he always has the power of imprinting an idea with the
     utmost clearness upon our souls. He will sometimes make a slight
     change in a motive, or make a development of it, that gives us an
     entirely different psychological impression of the idea
     represented by the motive, as indicating some new aspect of it in
     which the motives are all dovetailed together into a compact
     whole that is simply marvellous. If one considers the "Ring,"
     that gigantic web of motives, and at the same time, in the words
     of that able critic, Mr. Ernest Newman, "beyond all comparison
     the biggest thing ever conceived by the mind of a musician,"
     colossal yet logical, gigantic yet compact, the power of the
     Bayreuth master will become even still more evident.

     Wagner's first work, _Rienci_, composed frankly in the blatant
     Meyerbeerian style, has no artistic significance. _The Flying
     Dutchman_ marks a great advance. _Tannhäuser_ and _Lohengrin_ are
     milestones of progress, but in all these works Wagner's full
     ideal is, generally speaking, but little perceptible. The really
     great Wagner operas are his later works, _Tristan und Isolde_,
     _Parsifal_, _Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg_, and, above all,
     that gigantic tetralogy (a complete musico-dramatic rendering of
     the Icelandic Saga put into English verse under the title of
     _Sigurd the Volsung_ by William Morris) which consists of four
     stupendous operas, _Das Rheingold_, _Die Walküre_, _Siegfried_,
     and _Gotterdämmerung_. These marvellous works, the consummation
     of the Bayreuth master's principles, undoubtedly stand with
     Beethoven's symphonies as the greatest achievements in music.

     For the rest, it may be mentioned that Wagner was in private life
     a most kindly man, albeit at times quick-tempered, a great lover
     of children and animals. His philosophy was a somewhat variable
     quantity; he fell under the influence first of Feuerbach, then of
     Schopenhauer, and to some extent possibly of Nietzsche. But
     still, throughout all his works runs the doctrine of the Free
     Individual, of which Siegfried and Parsifal are perhaps the most
     striking impersonations.

     Like Browning, Wagner believed in redemption by means of
     sacrifice. In his richness and strength Wagner typified the
     abounding vitality of the new Germany. To the Fatherland he is
     what Shakespeare is to England. One may apply to him the noble
     words Milton wrote of Shakespeare:

       "Thou in our wonder and astonishment
        Hast built thyself a livelong monument.

        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

        And so sepulchred in such pomp dost lie
        That kings for such a tomb would wish to die."

                                                 H. P. M. J.

I found among my son's papers a sketch in manuscript of Wagner's life
and work. It begins with some observations on Romanticism and
Classicism.

     Whereas in the Classical style the spirit is held in restraint by
     certain forms, in the Romantic it refuses to acknowledge these
     forms and breaks away to give the soul entirely free play. It
     necessarily follows that the Romantic style makes the wider
     appeal, for it touches chords of the heart that the Classical
     cannot. Also the Romantic is rather more definite and less purely
     intellectual than the Classical, though the ideal may be equally
     high in the one as in the other. In short, the Romantic style is
     human in its appeal, while the Classical is superhuman. The best
     examples of men great in these two forms of art are Shakespeare
     in the Romance and Milton in the Classic.

Returning to music, he thought that Bach, "immortal though many of his
works are," was fettered by his servitude to rules.

     The Classical may become too cold, may lose all connection with
     the warmth of humanity. Such a fate does Haydn seem to have met
     in many of his works. Beethoven, the mightiest classicist, also
     to some extent Mozart, saw that the soul must not hold entirely
     aloof from humanity. Hence it is that Beethoven broke
     deliberately several, though not indeed very many, of Bach's more
     enchaining rules, while Mozart, in his operas at least, had a
     large amount of Romance worked into his music. On the other hand,
     by its very nature the Romance style is occasionally apt to slip
     into what is pre-eminently Classicism.

He confutes the argument that because base things have to be expressed
in the Romantic style therefore that style degrades Art, for "base
things handled artistically excite pure emotions of anger or
indignation."

     Wagner, though he broke every rule set up by Bach, though he
     abolished all the ideas of Classicism, produced with his later
     works (_i.e._, _The Ring_, _Die Meistersinger_, _Tristan_, and
     _Parsifal_) music which reveals infinitudes of art to quite as
     great an extent as any classicist has done.... Wagner gives us
     Nature's message, Beethoven the message of the incomprehensible
     Empyrean, and it is for no one to say that the one message is any
     greater or less than the other.

Necessarily the opera must be more romantic than the symphony.
"Composers who have given the world both opera and symphony such as
Beethoven, Mozart, Weber, Spohr, Berlioz, always wrote Romantically in
their operas and Classically in their symphonies." Of the development
of opera he wrote:

     Opera was fast degenerating into a sort of collection of ballads,
     with hardly any orchestration at all, when a strong man rose to
     check these abuses. Gluck was the forerunner of the earlier
     German school of opera composers, which includes such men as
     Beethoven, Mozart, Weber and Schubert. Gluck had studied
     carefully the progress of non-operatic music since Bach's time,
     and seeing what vast strides the art had made in this direction,
     tried to bring into line with the opera its improvements. He was
     the first composer to show the immense and inestimable necessity
     of properly orchestrated music in opera. Gluck's rich scoring,
     beautiful melodies combined with dramatic connection between
     action, voice and orchestra, entirely revolutionised the opera.
     Fortunately, he had a still greater contemporary to carry on his
     reforms. Gluck has himself explained how he set out to avoid any
     concession of music to the vocal abilities of the singer; how he
     had tried to bring music to its proper function, _i.e._, to go
     side by side with the poetry of the drama--a clear forecasting of
     Wagner's own reforms.

     Whereas in Monteverde's operas the dramatic significance was
     kept, but only at the expense of the music, which had absolutely
     no signification at all, in the works of Gluck, Mozart and
     Scarlatti the musical part is elevated, but entirely at the
     expense of the dramatic idea, which is quite lost. A Mozart
     melody, rhythmic, square-cut, is as different as possible from a
     Wagner theme, for whereas the former suggests nothing the latter
     is very rich in suggestion. It is clear that Gluck and Mozart,
     though they performed an inestimable service to the musical art
     by the raising of the orchestra to its proper position with
     regard to the voice and the music, yet failed to keep in view the
     continuity of the drama in opera. Hence it was that Weber and
     Beethoven frankly abolished the recitative that joins the formal
     melodies of the arias and melodic passages and composed
     Singspiel, having their works built up of airs and melodies
     joined by spoken dialogue. Such is Weber's _Der Freischütz_ and
     such Beethoven's _Fidelio_.

After discussing Meyerbeer, Scarlatti, and Rossini, Bellini and
Donizetti, my son comes to Wagner and the revolution in music he
accomplished:

     Wagner was a man of ripe culture, who was equally familiar with
     Beethoven's symphonies, Shakespeare's dramas, Kant's philosophic
     writings and Homer's epics. All the great works of literature and
     philosophy were well known to him. Thus he brought to bear on his
     music a mind singularly well equipped in every direction. He was,
     too, essentially a Teuton, with all the German massiveness of
     conception and depth of soul. A lesser man must have fallen
     before the prospect of attempting such a colossal reform. What
     was that reform in its essentials? It was this--to compose opera
     in which the idea of the drama was made the ruling conception; to
     attain this end by a wedding of suitable poetry to music of such
     a kind as should reflect by its themes what was happening on the
     stage or in the minds of the characters. There was to be no aria
     or fixed form of ballad, but continuous melody, in which the
     voices of the characters are regarded as extra instruments of the
     orchestra, with just that element of personality included....

     To have succeeded entirely in this bold design he would have had
     to be a Shakespeare in poetry and knowledge of human nature, as
     well as a musician of equal ability. How could any one man fulfil
     both of these rôles? In the matter of the music Wagner is a very
     Shakespeare. But if we take his own writings as evidences of what
     he meant to do, then his librettos must necessarily be
     unsatisfactory. They keep the dramatic idea in sight so much as
     almost entirely to lose sight of poetic beauty. Wagner was
     pre-eminently a musician; he was not a poet, as he wished also to
     be. Whatever his poetical achievements, the main fact is
     unaltered. The dramatic idea and the musical expression are kept
     so indissolubly close by Wagner as to be one for all intents and
     purposes.

Of Wagner's treatment of the vocalist he says:

     The melody sung is modelled upon the way in which the speaking
     voice rises and falls in accordance with the feelings of the
     moment. With marvellous skill the master of Bayreuth has made the
     music sung reflect as clearly as any oration what are the
     thoughts and feelings of the character. The orchestra makes, as
     it were, a tide or ocean, over which the voice, in this manner,
     floats, now rising high on the crest of the wave, now sinking
     into the trough of the seas. Sometimes for added poignancy,
     Wagner makes the voice sing the _leitmotif_ of some idea
     connected with the idea of the moment. This is constantly
     occurring in _Die Meistersinger_.

After scornful allusions to French and Italian opera, he shows how
Wagner re-fashioned opera on new and nobler lines. Replying to those
who say "You must have lightness sometimes," he wrote:

     Yes, but never triviality. If we want lightness of touch and
     wittiness, have we not _Die Meistersinger_, the greatest comedy
     in the world, or a merry piece like Mozart's _Nozze di Figaro_?
     Here is all the wit that one wants, yet the level is kept high
     throughout. It is the same in literature. We have absurd, banal
     pieces, said to be humorous, such as _The Glad Eye_, which really
     contain not one-millionth the humour that there is in a noble
     comedy like Shakespeare's _Twelfth Night_, or _As You Like It_,
     or a Shavian play like _John Bull's Other Island_. Man is too
     great a thing ever to be of his nature low and banal. We have in
     life farce sometimes, comedy very often indeed, but never
     banality.

The essay thus concludes:

     If we have been flooded with rag-times and musical comedies, the
     fault lies in the first place with the French and Italian
     composers of the period 1790-1850. Pre-Wagner opera is as low a
     concoction as can possibly be conceived. It took all the genius
     of the great Bayreuth master to turn things back into their
     proper channel. But he has succeeded, and the old style is
     moribund. Anyone who glances over the list of living composers
     must see that they are all enormously influenced by Wagner's
     principle. The last of the old style was Massenet, and he is
     dead. We see Richard Strauss, an extreme Wagnerian, only without
     the master's full powers; Engelbert Humperdinck, who is a user of
     the _leitmotif_ and a most skilled orchestrator, though his
     motifs are not so powerful as Wagner's or even Strauss's; Pietro
     Mascagni, a Mozartean composer; Bruneau, an extreme Wagnerian;
     Glazounov and Mossourgsky have combined Wagner's ideas with
     Tschaikovsky's; Puccini at least is a very strong supporter and
     admirer of Wagner. It will thus be seen that, with the exception
     of Mascagni, Wagnerian ideas have been paid tribute to by all the
     leading opera composers of the day. In a word, the Man is here.
     Opera, as represented by Richard Wagner's music-dramas, takes its
     place on a level with the absolute music of which Beethoven's
     work is the noblest example.

Paul found keen pleasure in the Gilbert and Sullivan operas, liking
the witty libretto as much as the bright, tuneful melodies. For the
work of Cæsar Franck, a gifted Belgian musician who died on the
threshold of manhood, he had profound admiration, and was of opinion
that had he lived Franck would have taken rank with the great masters.
As was to be expected, my son had for Welsh music a strong natural
sympathy. He held that "Men of Harlech" was one of the greatest of all
battle hymns, and that "Morfa Rhuddlan," the ancient Cymric dirge, had
never been surpassed as a piece of funereal music. Some of the old
Welsh hymn tunes he regarded as unique in their wistfulness and devout
aspiration; and as for Welsh choral singing, he thought it was
matchless for richness, fire and harmony.



CHAPTER IX

LITERATURE AND ETHICS

  _Without the blessing of reading the burden of life would be
  intolerable and the riches of life reduced to the merest penury._

                                                  GLADSTONE.


  _The taste for reading stores the mind with pleasant thoughts,
  banishes ennui, fills up the unoccupied interstices and enforced
  leisures of an active life; and if it is judiciously managed it is
  one of the most powerful means of training character and
  disciplining and elevating thought. To acquire this taste in early
  life is one of the best fruits of education._

                                   LECKY: "THE MAP OF LIFE."


From his childhood Paul Jones had been a voracious and an omnivorous
reader. He read with amazing rapidity. The first book he enjoyed
whole-heartedly was Mabel Dearmer's "Noah's Ark Geography," one of the
best children's books written in the past twenty years. He read and
re-read this book as a little boy and used to talk lovingly of Kit and
his friends, Jum-Jum and the Cockyolly Bird. Alas! Kit (Mrs. Dearmer's
son Christopher) and his gifted mother have been claimed as victims by
the World War. Paul revelled in "Æsop's Fables," "Robinson Crusoe,"
"The Swiss Family Robinson," "Don Quixote," "Treasure Island," "The
Arabian Nights," "Gulliver's Travels," and classical legends. As he
grew older he passed on to "The Mabinogion," "The Pilgrim's Progress,"
Lamb's "Tales of Shakespeare," and writers like Henty, Manville Fenn,
Clark Russell, W. H. Fitchett and P. G. Wodehouse. He followed with
delight the adventures of Sherlock Holmes, whose charm never faded for
him. He made a point of reading everything written by Conan Doyle. But
he gave first place among living writers to George Bernard Shaw, and
next place to H. G. Wells. He would never miss a Shaw play. His
delight at the first performance he saw of _John Bull's Other Island_
was boisterous. He loved to read that play as well as to see it
performed. The glimpses of Ireland and the portraits of Irish
character enchanted him. Broadbent--typifying the self-complacency of
the well-meaning but Philistine Victorian who had solved to his own
satisfaction all mysteries in earth and heaven--he regarded as a
masterpiece of creative art. For Kipling his admiration was qualified;
but he loved "M'Andrews' Hymn," and often recited lines from the
"Recessional." Of the great novelists Dickens was easily his first
favourite; a long way behind came Scott, Stevenson and Jules Verne.
Dickens he knew and loved in every mood. Pickwick like Falstaff was to
him a source of perennial delight. He loved and honoured Dickens for
his rich and tender humanity, the passion of pity that suffused his
soul, the lively play of his comic fancy. Endowed with a keen sense of
humour, he read Mark Twain and W. W. Jacobs with gusto. As a
relaxation from historical studies he would sometimes devour a bluggy
story, and as he read would shout with laughter at its grotesque
out-topping of probabilities. He tried his own hand at sensational
yarns. I recall one of them, rich in gory incidents, with a villain
who is constantly leaping from a G.W.R. express to elude his pursuers.
Among his papers I found the manuscript of a detective story,
vivaciously written after the Sherlock Holmes and Watson manner.

At one time Paul liked to read Homer and Thucydides, Virgil and
Tacitus; but as soon as he was at home in the wide realm of English
literature he thrust the old classics from him, and subsequently his
hard historical reading gave him no opportunity, even if he had felt
the desire, to revert to Greek and Latin writers. But he was fully
conscious of the world's debt in culture to Greece and in law and
government to Rome. He wrote: "The influence of Greek thought, Greek
form, Greek art, is universal and eternal."

Of all names in literature he reverenced most that of Shakespeare, in
whom he saw "the spirit of the Renaissance personified," and whom he
described "as romantic, philosophic, realistic, and as varied and
impersonal as Nature." He was never weary of reading the tragedies and
historical plays. He resented any word in disparagement of
Shakespeare, and could not understand the inability of a supreme
artist like Tolstoy to appreciate his greatness. Though he has written
a noble sonnet in homage to Shakespeare's genius, Matthew Arnold once
permitted himself to say that "Homer leaves Shakespeare as far behind
as perfection leaves imperfection." Paul wrote in a marginal note,
"Bosh! to put it bluntly." He would say with Goethe, "The first page
of Shakespeare made me his for life, and when I had perused an entire
play I stood like one born blind, to whom sight by some miraculous
power had been restored in a moment." Paul and I often exchanged ideas
on Shakespeare. He was lost in wonder at Shakespeare's creative power,
his inexhaustible fertility, the universality of his range, the
perfection of his portraiture, his mastery over all moods, his cunning
artistry in the use of words, his exuberant imagery and effortless
ease. He made a pilgrimage to Stratford-on-Avon to see with his own
eyes the spots and scenes amid which Shakespeare's youth and declining
years were spent. The smiling beauty of Stratford and the rich rural
charm of its surroundings left on his mind a delightful impression
that was never erased.

Next to Shakespeare his admiration flowed out to Milton. When he went
into the battle-line he took with him only two books--his Shakespeare
and his Milton. With Milton's character he had some marked
affinities--the virginal purity of Milton's youth, his love of
learning, his hatred of all tyrannies, secular and spiritual, making a
strong appeal to the sympathies of my son. "Milton," he wrote, "is
perhaps the very grandest figure in English history." "In Milton the
spirit of Puritanism is combined with a purely Hellenic love of
beauty." "'Paradise Lost' may be regarded (1) as a reflection of the
Puritan point of view; (2) as a poem pure and simple; (3) as an epic
of the classical school."

Profound as was his admiration for "Paradise Lost," he could not
forbear smiling at Taine's quip that the Miltonic Adam is "your true
Paterfamilias, a member of the Opposition, a Whig, a Puritan, who
entered Paradise via England."

Paul extolled Pope's ingenuity and metrical felicity--he has
thoroughly annotated the "Essay on Man"--but was acutely conscious of
aridity and the absence of rapture and vision in Pope as in Dryden. He
singled out as "the finest passage in the 'Essay on Man'" the eight
lines in which Pope contrasts the majesty of the Universe with the
insignificance of man, beginning:

  Let earth unbalanced from her orbit fly,
  Planets and suns run lawless through the sky.

He had not much respect for Pope's philosophy, and, commenting on one
passage in the same poem, writes: "Pope, like many other unsound
reasoners, when his position becomes dangerous, seeks to vindicate
himself by insults."

Above all nineteenth-century poets he loved Wordsworth, the revelation
of whose richness and glory only came to him after he was seventeen.
There were no bounds to his admiration for the Wordsworth sonnets.
Many a time since the War he would recite the glorious sonnet which
proclaims that

  We must be free or die, who speak the tongue
  That Shakespeare spake, the faith and morals hold
  Which Milton held. In every thing we are sprung
  Of Earth's first blood, have titles manifest.

The magic of Keats and his adoration of beauty struck a responsive
chord in Paul's nature. Tennyson did not stir him to the depths of his
being like Wordsworth. "Ulysses," "The Revenge," and "Crossing the
Bar" were the only Tennyson poems that he cared for. In an essay
written when he was eighteen he defined poetry as "the soul of man put
into untrammelled speech, the voice of angels, the music of the
spheres." He read with critical discernment, sometimes agreeing,
sometimes disagreeing, with the author. It was his habit when reading
a book to mark passages that impressed him and make comments in the
margin. Some of his _obiter dicta_ shall be given. In judging them it
should be remembered that they were all pronounced before he was
nineteen.

     How aptly said that Dante seems to have tried to write a poem
     with a sculptor's chisel or a painter's brush.

     Froissart observes clearly, but his observation is limited to the
     world of nobles and chivalry; he ignores the life, the sufferings
     and the joys of the people.

     Ben Jonson, master of dignified declamatory drama, was the
     greatest of the post-Shakespeare school. We may justly say
     post-Shakespeare, though Jonson was nearly contemporaneous with
     the Bard of Avon, because the influence of such a man clearly
     belongs to an age in which the freedom and romantic magnificence
     of Shakespeare have been forgotten.

     Gibbon is the first of historians. The "Decline and Fall of the
     Roman Empire" runs its course like some majestic river.

     Burns is a microcosm of Scotland.

     Burke--a stainless and beautiful character. A theorist in
     practice; a practical man in theory.

     Burke's view of Rousseau was biased and unjust.

     Though contemptuous of Wordsworth, Byron himself is a romantic of
     the romanticists. He was the guiding star of rebels the world
     over.

     In the calm purity of his verse, Shelley is more classic than
     romantic. What ecstatic melody in his lyrics!

     Dickens is often mawkish and often portrays oddities; but these
     oddities do exist, especially in London (_e.g._, Sam Weller, Mrs.
     Todgers, Jo, etc.), and Dickens unearthed them for the first
     time. How his heart warms for the poor and the wretched! He is
     the great poet of London life.

     Macaulay is not a philosophic writer; but then the English genius
     is certainly non-philosophic.

     Froude in his essay on Homer says: "The authors of the Iliad and
     the Odyssey stand alone with Shakespeare far away above mankind."
     Paul's marginal note: "Add to them Milton, Goethe, the author of
     the Nibelungen-lied, Browning."

     Froude, I think, has misunderstood the Nibelungen-lied entirely.
     There is really much savagery and much glory in both the German
     and the Greek epic.

     How strange that men like Rabelais and Swift, Goldsmith and
     Dickens, who have done so much to make the world laugh,
     experienced in their own lives great unhappiness.

     Browning is always an optimist. His manliness and vigour are
     unfailing:

       I find earth not grey but rosy,
         Heaven not grim but fair of hue.
       Do I stoop? I pluck a posy.
         Do I stand and stare? All's blue.

Paul considered that Macaulay lacked ideas and vision. He liked the
lilt and swing of the Lays and Ballads, and enjoyed the Essays with
their superb colouring. Disputing Macaulay's dictum that neither
painters nor poets are helped by the advances in civilisation, science
and refinement, he wrote: "This argument disproved by the examples of
men like Shakespeare and Goethe, like Browning and Kipling. And did
not Leonardo da Vinci become a student of anatomy in order to learn
how to depict the human body properly on his canvas?"

Macaulay in his Essay on Mackintosh's "History of The Revolution"
describes the condition of England in 1678, after eighteen years of
Charles the Second's reign, in graphic words, beginning "Such was the
nation which, awaking from its rapturous trance, found itself sold to
a foreign, a despotic, a Popish court, defeated on its own seas and
rivers by a State of far inferior resources, and placed under the rule
of pandars and buffoons."

Paul's comment reads: "This superb passage is one of the most inspired
of Macaulay's utterances. Contrast with it in the same Essay the vivid
sentence beginning 'In the course of seven centuries,' in which he
pronounces a magnificent panegyric on the greatness of Britain."

He thought the music of Macaulay's prose had often a metallic sound,
and that it suffered from excess of epithet and addiction to
antithetical phrases. In pithiness of style, sureness of touch and
dispassionate judgment, he contrasted Acton as an historical writer
with Macaulay, to the latter's disadvantage. He found every page of
Acton packed with thought, every essay richly freighted with ideas.
Moreover, Acton was sternly impartial and impersonal in his judgment
of persons and in his estimate of influences. Paul wrote:

     There has never been in historical writing such inexorable logic,
     such compact phraseology, so much pith and point, as are to be
     found in Acton's Essays.

His view of Carlyle was thus expressed: "Take away his style and half
his greatness vanishes. Carlyle's works are not English in spirit, nor
have they any point of resemblance to those of any other English
writer." As for his views: "he has, alas! no love for democracy."
Carlyle's habit of apotheosising heroes and his worship of the Strong
Man made Paul pose the familiar problem: "Is the great man the
fashioner of his age, or its product?" He thought something was to be
said on both sides, and that it was impossible to lay down a positive
proposition on what he called "this terribly difficult question." But
he agreed with Guizot that "great events and great men are fixed
points and summits of historical survey." He emphasises the fact that
in his "French Revolution" Carlyle, in spite of his hero-worship,
accepts the evolutionary view of history.

Among essayists he had a special liking for Froude, Matthew Arnold and
Edmund Gosse. He often turned for refreshment to Froude's "Short
Studies," and felt the fascination of his "Erasmus." In his essay on
the Book of Job, Froude writes: "Happiness is not what we are to look
for; our place is to be true to the best which we know; to seek that
and do that." On this my son comments: "I don't hold with this idea;
for, while happiness is not the end, yet it always in its purest and
brightest form comes to the really good or great man in the
consciousness of the work he has done." Froude in his essay on
"Representative Men" enlarges on the importance of educating boys by
holding up before them the pattern of noble lives. By picturing the
career of a noble man rising above temptation and "following life
victoriously and beautifully forward," Froude thinks you will kindle a
boy's heart as no threat of punishment here or hereafter will kindle
it. On this Paul writes: "A noble plea for an education of youth far
more effective than the cursed nonsense of forbidding this or that on
penalty of hell-fire."

Matthew Arnold, whom in some moods he admired, occasionally got on
his nerves. I find this footnote on a page of "Culture and Anarchy":
"This is self-satisfied swank." On another page: "Matthew Arnold
himself often wanting in sweetness and light." On another: "Admirably
put; here I do agree with M. A." He liked Arnold's essay on "The
Function of Criticism," although he differed from some of the author's
judgments. "The French Revolution took a political, practical
character," wrote Arnold; on which my son's comment is: "Surely the
French Revolution was only one aspect of a great world-movement of
liberation! One side of it is Romanticism; another the Revolution
itself; yet another, the Industrial Revolution. No movement has ever a
character _sui generis_." On Joubert's remark: "Force and Right are
the governors of this world, Force till Right is ready," his comment
is: "A regular German theory." Paul's final note on "The Function of
Criticism" reads:

     I consider that Matthew Arnold insists too much on the
     non-practical element of criticism. After all, it is the lesson
     of life that the practical man wins in the end. When we are
     brought face to face with the realities of things--as in a war
     like the present one--all thought of art and letters simply
     vanishes. How is it that the mass of the world is always
     inartistic? How is it that the one people in the world--the
     Greeks--who built up their State on what Arnold regards as ideal
     conditions, collapsed in headlong ruin before the inartistic but
     practical Romans?

This comment illustrates one effect of the War on Paul's mind: he was
becoming less of an idealist and more of a realist.

For Mr. W. H. Hudson's "Introduction to the Study of Literature" he
had high esteem. This book he has carefully annotated. Of Mr. Hudson's
remarks on the contrast between the style of Milton and that of
Dryden, between Hooker and Defoe, he writes: "A comparison of
remarkable discernment. The difference between the Miltonic and
Drydenic styles, _i.e._, pre-1660 and post-1660, was simply due to the
change in ideas caused by the reaction against Puritanism." Agreeing
with Hudson that there is much poetry which is prosaic and much prose
which is poetical, he cites as examples: "Prose in Poetry: Pope,
Dryden, Walt Whitman. Poetry in Prose: Carlyle, Macaulay, Goethe." He
did not concur with Hudson's remark that the "full significance of
poetry can be appreciated only when it addresses us through the ear,"
and that "the silent perusal of the printed page will leave one of its
principal secrets unsurprised." Paul's comment on this:

     Too sweeping a statement. Take, for example, poets like Milton
     and Browning, where every line is fraught with some deep
     philosophic meaning and must be pondered over for some time
     before the whole of the greatness of the poetry is realised. In
     these cases reading aloud is not nearly so good as private,
     silent study.

He demurred to the proposition that while the function of Ethics is to
instruct, that of Art is to delight. "I hold," he writes, "that Art's
duty is to instruct as much as, if not more than, that of Ethics. Art
to be great must elevate and edify." Hudson wrote: "The common view
that the primitive ages of the world were ages of colossal
individualism is grotesquely unhistorical; they were, on the contrary,
ages in which group-life and group-consciousness were in the
ascendant." "Quite true," notes Paul. "See Maine's 'Ancient Law,'
where he points out that ancient history has nothing to do with the
individual but only with groups." Another annotated book is
Maeterlinck's "Wisdom and Destiny." To Maeterlinck's remark, "It is
often of better avail from the start to seek that which is highest,"
he adds: "Always, not often." He heartily subscribed to Maeterlinck's
doctrine that our attitude to life ought to be one of "gladsome,
enlightened acceptance, not a hostile, gloomy submission."

His philosophy of life was expressed in that beautiful passage in
Carlyle's essay on "Characteristics":

     Here on earth we are as soldiers fighting in a foreign land; that
     understand not the plan of the campaign and have no need to
     understand it; seeing well what is at our hand to be done, let us
     do it like soldiers, with submission, with courage, with a heroic
     joy. "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy
     might." Behind us, behind each one of us, lie 6,000 years of
     human effort, human conquest. Before us is the boundless Time,
     with its as yet uncreated and unconquered continents and
     Eldorados, which we, even we, have to conquer, to create; and
     from the bosom of Eternity there shine for us celestial guiding
     stars.

       My inheritance, how wide and fair!
       Time is my fair seed-field, of Time I'm heir.

The ethical side of Paul's character is reflected in the appended
quotations from some of his essays:

     Sacrifice is always the lot of the divine man.

     What is "to do good"? It is to think of other people.

     Joy only comes to Faust when at last he is labouring for others.
     As Wolsey puts it in _Henry VIII_: "Love thyself last," and "bear
     peace in thy right hand."

     The Epicurean idea is vile and detestable. If everyone thinks
     only of his own indulgence, how can the wherewithal for that
     indulgence be forthcoming? What is the use of man having all his
     glorious gifts of character and intellect if he does not use
     them? Why is man made so different from the animals if he is to
     be the mere slave of his passions?

     Stoicism finally degenerates into mere pessimism.

     The great defect of Puritanism was its hostility to Art; for Art
     glorifies and ennobles Life.

     "What is the final cause of the Universe?" This is the old
     problem of the philosophers. Goethe's lines leap to the mind:

       "How, when and where?
          The Gods make no reply;
        To causes give thy care,
          And cease to question why."

     Carlyle in "Heroes and Hero Worship" shows the folly of
     condemning a man for the faults noted down by the world about
     him--by those blind to the true inner secret of his life. "Who
     art thou that judgest thy fellow?"

     Naturalism is illogical because it postulates Nature without
     mind.

     If you do not place faith in humanity, what really is the use of
     any philosophy of life?

     Let us remember St. Paul's injunction, "Bear ye one another's
     burdens."

     It is a thought to make one ponder, that by far the finest Life
     of Christ was written by an agnostic, Renan.

     Action is a great joy in life.

     When prehistoric man took up a flint and laboriously beat it into
     a shape that his brain told him would be of use to him, he laid
     the foundations of all civilisation. Man's progress is the story
     of brute force laid low by Thought--which is the one really
     irresistible influence in the Universe:

       "In the world there is nothing great but Man;
        In Man there is nothing great but Mind."

     It is a perplexing reflection that there is no absolute moral
     standard. The moral law appears to vary with environment and
     according to conditions of time and place. I am reminded of
     Pope's lines:

       "Where the extreme of vice was ne'er agreed.
        Ask where's the North? At York 'tis on the Tweed;
        In Scotland, at the Orcades; and there
        At Greenland, Zembla, or the Lord knows where."

     The greater a man is in one direction, the more prone he usually
     is to weakness in another: that is why we must never condemn
     indiscriminately.

     The laws governing the Universe, so far from being mechanical
     and dead, are elements filled with Truth and Beauty.

     Materialism is fatal to the higher instincts, because it
     introduces that most sordid element--earthly pomp, circumstance
     and recompense.

     The Universe, History, Life are before us. Why should they not be
     investigated? It is not true that science leads to Atheism or
     Fatalism. What science does is to destroy that fabric of
     _Aberglaube_ or superstition which chokes and asphyxiates the
     best parts of religion. What science does is to set up a new,
     purer creed based on certainty and truth.

Of French writers Paul liked most Taine, Sainte-Beuve, and Victor
Hugo. His love of reading he took with him into the War. A box of
books returned to us with his other effects from France included "The
Meditations of Marcus Aurelius," Kant's "Critique of Pure Reason,"
Macaulay's "Essays," Saint-Simon's "Memoirs," Sainte-Beuve's
"Causeries," "The Imitation of Christ," Lecky's "History of European
Morals," and works by Goethe, Victor Hugo, Dumas the elder, Flaubert,
Maurice Barrès, and Mrs. Humphry Ward.



CHAPTER X

HISTORY AND POLITICS

  _History is philosophy teaching by examples._

                                                BOLINGBROKE.


  _The science of Politics is the one science that is deposited by the
  stream of history, like grains of gold in the sand of a river._

                                                      ACTON.


Reared in the home of a political journalist, it was natural that Paul
Jones should be attracted to public affairs. He followed with lively
curiosity the progress of the two general elections of 1910, and from
that year was an interested observer of political events. As he grew
older his bent towards politics became more pronounced. A youth
familiar with Roman, mediæval and modern history could not fail to be
fascinated by the political drama unfolding before his eyes. He
watched history in the making with the same eagerness that he read the
history of the past. The prevailing tone at Dulwich, as at most public
schools, is Conservative. Paul was a perfervid Liberal. In school and
out of school, not only did he not disguise, he gloried in his
advanced opinions. The extent of his political knowledge and the
ripeness of his views were astonishing in one so young.

From the moment he began to think for himself his sympathies flowed
out to the wage-earning classes. What he remembered and what he had
heard of his Puritan grandfather, William Jones, a grand specimen of
the Victorian artisan, who died in December, 1905, on the verge of 80,
deepened his regard for them. But his own broad and sympathetic nature
would have drawn him instinctively to their side. In his judgment it
was on and by the working-classes that the wheels of the world moved
forward. He had nothing but contempt for the sparrow-like frivolity of
fashionable Society, and was repelled from the middle classes by their
servitude to conventions, their prejudices social and political, and
their non-receptivity to ideas. He for his part must breathe an ampler
air. He was wont to speak disdainfully of the Victorian era, because,
in spite of all the advances it witnessed in the physical sciences and
of Britain's rapid growth in wealth between 1850 and 1890, it did so
little for social welfare.

For feudal magnates and the _nouveaux riches_ he had scant respect,
holding that both the aristocracy and the plutocracy had used their
political power for selfish ends. Old feudalism in some respects he
regarded as better than new Capital, for the landed aristocracy did at
least recognise some obligations to those under their sway, whereas
Capital was so concerned with its rights that it forgot altogether its
reciprocal duties. His view was that, under shelter of the
_laissez-faire_ system, with its false presumption that employers and
employed were on a parity in bargaining power, Capital had
scandalously evaded its obligations to Labour. He regarded the
conditions of life in some of our industrial districts as a grave
reproach to the nation. The lust for wealth and other unlovely aspects
of competitive commercialism were most repugnant to him. He knew that
Nature cares not a rap for equality and lavishes her gifts with a
strange caprice. But though there is inequality of natural gifts, he
thought it was the duty of the State to ensure equality of opportunity
to all its citizens. His ideal was a co-operative commonwealth, in
which the competitive spirit would be held in check by communal needs
and aims, and where every career would be opened freely to talent. In
one of his essays he deplores the fact that political economists had
fallen into the delusion of applying the laws that govern the
exchange of commodities without any variation to Labour, and leaving
out of account intangibles and imponderables like moral forces and
other expressions of the delicate and mysterious human spirit.
Political economy, he thought, would have to be recast and humanised.
"The economists," he said, "have entirely ignored the human factor."

Paul's conviction was that when the rule of enlightened democracy was
established wars would cease. "The peoples never want wars," he wrote;
"under a pure democracy wars would be impossible." Because of the
associations clustering around it the word "Imperialism" jarred on
him, but he took pride in the greatness of the free and liberal
British Empire, with its rule of law, its love of peace, its humane
ideals. He had the historical sense in highly developed degree. The
story of human progress stretched before the eye of his mind in a
series of vivid pictures. Surveying the immense and imposing fabric of
recorded events woven by the ceaseless loom of Time, he had an
unerring instinct for the shining figures, the salient characteristic,
the determining factor. Away from a library he could have written a
quite tolerable essay on any century of the Christian era. Historical
characters in whom he was specially interested were Julius Cæsar,
Octavius, Charlemagne, the Emperor Charles V, Queen Elizabeth,
Cromwell, Louis XIV, the elder Pitt, Frederick the Great, and
Napoleon; and among the non-political Roger Bacon, Erasmus, Luther,
Sir Thomas More, Isaac Newton, Faraday, and Darwin. The Elizabethan
age had for him a magnetic attraction, because of the Queen with her
enigmatical personality, marvellous statecraft and capacity for
inspiring devotion, and of the brilliant galaxy of great men,
statesmen and sailors, poets and scholars, who enriched her reign with
so much glory. Another epoch he loved to study was that of the French
Revolution. I have already referred to his habit of annotating the
books he read. From notes he made on political books and from some of
his essays I have culled the following:

     Man's tool-using power is simply a symbol of man's unique
     reasoning gifts. Its connotations may be extended to mean the
     entire intellect.

     The savage using his language with joy like a child, gives us the
     wealth of beautiful mythology about all natural objects.

     It is wonderful to think that Julius Cæsar's imperial system was
     handed right down to the nineteenth century, until one not unlike
     Cæsar himself set his foot upon its neck in 1806. But long before
     it fell the Holy Roman Empire had really ceased, in Voltaire's
     words, to be holy, or Roman, or an empire.

     Froude holds up to admiration the "serene calmness" of Tacitus,
     and says he took no side. But I ask anyone who has read the
     sarcastic remarks about Domitian and the Emperors in the
     "Agricola" whether he thinks Tacitus took no side in writing
     history.

     Nothing can alter the fact that Mohammedanism has done a vast
     amount of good. Compare Carlyle's appreciation of Mahomet with
     Gibbon's acrimonious insinuations.

     Much that is strange in human history is explained if we remember
     that aristocracies in the West were political, while in the East
     they were religious.

     Hildebrand, who boldly declared that the Church compared to the
     State was as the sun to the moon--the State only shining by light
     borrowed from the greater orb--was now on the papal throne. His
     giant intellect and tremendous personality had overawed Henry IV
     into ignominious capitulation at Canossa. With Europe at his feet
     Hildebrand cannot but have desired to assert his authority over
     the island-State across the Channel. William the Conqueror and
     Hildebrand were rarely-matched antagonists--the one determined to
     set bounds to the Pope's scheme of world-domination; the Pope
     equally determined to bend the stubborn Norman to his will. It
     was the Conqueror who won.

     The conception of the Norman Conquest has shifted from the
     grotesque over-estimate of Thierry to the under-estimate of
     Freeman and Maitland. To the moderns the Conquest is now little
     more than a change of dynasty. A juster estimate would be that
     the very change of dynasty gave the Conquest its vital
     importance.... The effects were really immense. The Conquest
     substituted for the degenerate race of Anglo-Saxon kings a virile
     dynasty able to give to England what it needed--a vigorous
     central administration--and brought the English people into the
     stream of European civilisation.

     It was the hope of Erasmus that Catholic forms could be blended
     with the Greek spirit.

     Luther's songs express the very soul of old Germany; above all,
     the great hymn "Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott."

     Though the Reformation in freeing the mind of man from
     ecclesiastical tyranny made eventually for political liberty, its
     whole tendency in England for the time being was in favour of
     absolute monarchy. Its first outcome here was to set up a secular
     monarchy, supreme in Church and State, founded on the theory of
     the divine right of kings, based on an aristocracy made loyal by
     the instinct of self-interest.

     Commerce and national wealth were at stake in the war between
     England and Spain in the sixteenth century, and not merely,
     perhaps not even mainly, religion.

     Drake was a very great sailor, but he was undoubtedly a
     buccaneer.

     Many Ministers had been sent to the block for offences far less
     rank than those of Charles I; nevertheless, his execution was
     absolutely illegal and a fatal mistake in policy.

     Few men experienced such hard treatment at the hands of fortune
     as Cromwell. In every case, save the rule of the major-generals,
     his constitutional experiments were wise, far-seeing and
     well-conceived. It was the perverse conduct of those who
     professed to be his followers that ruined all.

     There has never been a shrewder king on a throne than Charles II.

     In the popular view, James II will always be regarded as the
     tyrannical despot, the subverter of the religious and political
     institutions of England, while his brother, Charles II, will be
     looked upon as a kindly and amiable gentleman, who oppressed no
     one and treated everyone kindly. Yet in the view of the student
     of history Charles becomes the tyrant and James an honest though
     bigoted fool.

     To compare the age of Cromwell with that of Charles II is to see
     the Dorian and Lydian spirits respectively in their most
     contrasted lights.

     The difference between Richelieu and Mazarin is the difference
     between the creator and the developer.

     The political revolution of 1688 was contemporaneous with a
     revolution in physics, shown by Harvey's discovery of the
     circulation of the blood; with a revolution in astronomical
     thought, shown by Newton's "Principia"; with a small revolution
     in literature, shown by the rise of English prose; with a
     revolution in popular feeling all over the world, as shown by the
     riots against excessive taxation in France and the ejection of de
     Witt in Holland. All the different threads of life seem to run
     interwoven, and one cannot be disturbed without disturbing the
     others.

     The character of Frederick the Great was stained by many infamous
     deeds; he was in many ways unscrupulous, yet he was never petty,
     and he was devoted to his country. He was the greatest genius in
     practical reforms and in the art of war that the eighteenth
     century produced.

     Frederick the Great has had a far stronger and better influence
     on history than a selfish, callous person like Louis XIV.

     Of all the benevolent despots there is only one, Frederick the
     Great, to whom can be fitly applied what Johnson said of
     Goldsmith: "Let not his faults be remembered: he was a very great
     man."

     Under a despotism the aristocracy loses all its powers, and,
     except for the bureaucracy and "King's friends," there is no
     privileged class unless the King is a weak man and under the
     thumb of his court (e.g., contrast the France of Louis XIV with
     that of Louis XV).

     Carlyle in his "French Revolution" paints a wonderfully vivid
     picture of the idle, voluptuous noblesse of the eighteenth
     century: compare the views of de Tocqueville.

     Carlyle in his grim account of the death-bed of Louis XV writes:
     "We will pry no further into the horrors of a sinner's
     death-bed." Paul's comment: "cf. the episode of the death of
     Front-de-Boeuf in 'Ivanhoe.'"

     Lord Chesterfield saw clearly the symptoms of the coming
     Revolution in France. Only two other men in Europe foresaw that
     immense event: Goldsmith and Arthur Young. Note Gibbon's
     complacent attitude _in re_ France to illustrate the general lack
     of vision on the subject.

     Voltaire's summing up of the consequences of Turgot's fall may be
     expressed in Sir Edward Grey's phrase: "Death, disaster and
     damnation."

     If Louis XVI had been wiser and more capable, would he have
     averted the French Revolution? I think not. It is to be doubted
     whether even a strong king, after so many years of tyranny which
     had generated such hatred of the ancient regime, could have
     checked the flow of forces making for the Revolution. Apart from
     the effect of the old tyranny, new ideas of democracy were
     arising. Witness the contemporary failure of a great benevolent
     despot in Joseph II.

     There was no idea of nationality in the foreign policy of the
     younger Pitt.

     Hilaire Belloc's description of the guillotining of the
     Dantonists forms a picture among the most thrilling, enthralling
     and agonising that I know.

     Fox stands out as one of the most brilliant failures and one of
     the most ineffective geniuses in history.

     Before war broke out in 1870 the world believed in the military
     superiority of France. Only that grim trio, Bismarck, Moltke and
     Roon, knew the contrary.

     William the First, grandfather of the present Kaiser, was an
     absurdly overestimated character. He owed all his success to his
     great Ministers.

     Treitschke writes: "The territories drained by great rivers are
     usually centres of civilisation.... Our Rhine remains the king of
     all rivers, but what great thing has ever happened on the
     Danube?" Paul's comment on this:

     "I know of only three great events on the Danube. One, the
     capture of Vienna by the Turks; two, the Battle of Blenheim;
     three, the Battle of Ulm."

     The Jews are a truly extraordinary race. Though they have for
     centuries been persecuted, despised, outcast, so far from being
     crushed by their sufferings, they seem actually to have been
     toughened in fibre, and to-day they exercise a commanding
     influence in the world.

     England's geographical position does not fit her for the rôle of
     a Continental Power. Her home is on the sea; her empire
     world-wide.

     Each race, each nation, has its own characteristics, its own
     peculiar type of civilisation. Attempts to destroy these inherent
     qualities have time and time again been baffled--as the examples
     of the Jews, Poland and Alsace-Lorraine clearly demonstrate....
     As Treitschke puts it: "The idea of a world-State is odious. The
     whole content of civilisation cannot be realised in a single
     State. Every people has the right to believe that certain powers
     of the Divine Reason display themselves in it at their highest."

     Patriotism may indeed be but a larger form of selfishness, but it
     is a larger form. It does involve devotion to others. As long as
     men are men, it is so unlikely as almost to be impossible that
     patriotism will ever be replaced by cosmopolitanism.

     A great point in favour of the rule of democracy is its
     character-building power.

     It is customary in a certain class of society to abuse
     trade-unionism. People talk of the tyranny of trade-unionism; it
     would be as easy, perhaps more justifiable, to talk of the
     tyranny of Capital. The trade union has its counterpart in what
     are termed the "upper classes." For example, the British Medical
     Association is nothing but a trade union under another name. The
     trade union is an absolute necessity to the worker in modern
     society.

     _Laissez-faire_ has advantages up to a point; State control has
     advantages up to a point. The most successful nation will be that
     one which succeeds in making a judicious mixture of the two
     systems.

     The Englishman in his devil-may-care way does not trouble to
     persecute or oppress; his tolerant spirit, aided by the splendid
     devotion of a few great men, has, in the words of Seeley, built
     up a glorious free Empire "in a fit of absence of mind."

     You will never make the English people idealistic, but you will
     never conquer them on that very account.

     While the German talks and dreams of world-Empire, the Englishman
     smiles, puts his pipe in his mouth and goes off to found it by
     accident.

     The modern system of diplomacy is as vile as anything can be.
     Even in England it is the negation of popular government.

     Man's duty to his neighbour ought to be observed as well as the
     harsh and pitiless laws of trade and competition.

     The social conditions of our industrial towns to-day are a
     standing indictment of the _laissez-faire_ system.

     The great warrior is no more important than the humble toiler.

     Gladstone's finance was governed by the determination to spend as
     little as possible. It does not seem to be so good as that of
     Lloyd George, viz., to be prepared to spend a great deal provided
     you are sure it is for the benefit of the people.

     On a remark of Dr. Sarolea's _in re_ the alleged inherent
     antagonism between Europe and America on the one side and Asia
     and Africa on the other: "Absurd! If we are to be good Europeans
     we must first of all be good world citizens. The Asiatic is as
     much our brother as is the Belgian or the American."

     It is not the case that England has checked Germany's Colonial
     development. Germany has herself to blame--herself and destiny.
     But I must say that Germany had to some extent right on her side
     in the Morocco dispute.

     The Germans ignore the fact that wherever we British go we throw
     our ports open to the commerce of the world.

In the autumn of 1914 my son read General von Bernhardi's book,
"Germany and the Next War." In his notes on this book he drew
attention to Bernhardi's frequent self-contradictions and his false
philosophy. From these notes the following excerpts are taken:

     Here Bernhardi flatly contradicts the biological argument he uses
     earlier in the chapter. Biology knows nothing of States; it sees
     only human beings.

     Look at the intimate connection between Darwinism and the
     political and economic views of the Individualist Radicals of the
     mid-Victorian era.

     Bernhardi assumes that mere material existence is always to be
     man's destiny. But the perpetuation of existence beyond the
     immediate present cannot be guided by the instinct of grabbing.

     The modern theory is that good and bad as abstract considerations
     do not exist, but that they are what experience shows to be best
     for us in the end. The animal knows this subconsciously; man
     consciously to a certain extent.

     Emphatically No; mere brute force is not the law of the universe.

     Bernhardi may as well talk of conquering the moon as of
     conquering the U.S.A.

     Man's true development consists above all in the negation of his
     selfish elements for the good of humanity.

     Bernhardi's proposition, "Only the State which strives after an
     enlarged sphere of influence can create the conditions under
     which mankind develops into the most splendid perfection," Paul
     counters by asking: "How does this theory fit in with the case of
     the Greeks, who, politically so weak, were yet intellectually so
     great that to-day, after 2,000 years, their influence in Europe
     is as great as ever? Which would you rather have been, tiny
     Greece or vast Persia?"

On Bernhardi's remark: "No excuse for revolutionary agitation in
Germany now exists."

     No excuse? When the people have no power at all, and can at any
     moment be led to the slaughter by a pack of Junkers--"all for the
     good of the State"; in other words, to give the military caste
     more wealth and dignity. In a few years Bernhardi will see
     whether the people have any cause for revolution or not.

     The Germany of philosophy, poetry and song will rescue the German
     people from the abyss into which the War Lords have plunged them.

     Germany was indeed unfortunate in entering the world as a great
     Power so late. But she will not make any progress by perpetually
     brandishing a sword before Europe.

     I do think that Prussia's policy in the past was largely
     determined by her geographical situation.

     The Entente with France was the price we paid for Egypt. Germany
     never entered our thoughts at all.

     On Bernhardi's allusion to India, Paul wrote: "Curiously enough,
     the very day I read this I heard in the House of Commons the
     wonderful story of the gifts presented to the British Government
     for war purposes by the Indian princes. Such a passionate
     outburst of loyalty has never been equalled. This gratitude and
     devotion we have won not by the rule of force, but by that of
     justice and kindness."

In regard to Bernhardi's prediction that our self-governing Dominions
would separate from the British Empire:

     Our policy toward them nobly justified. Now in our time of need
     the Colonies have flown to our side.

     God help civilisation when the Bernhardis set to work on it!

     Strange that people so far apart as Bernhardi and we Socialists
     should yet be at one on this question of checking selfish
     individualism by measures of State Socialism.

A frequent visitor to the Lobby and Press Gallery of the House of
Commons, my son was known to many members of Parliament and political
journalists. Thanks to his free, affable manner, he was on terms of
cordial regard with several of the attendants and police-constables on
duty in and about the House of Commons. His last visit to the Press
Gallery was in May, 1916. He was stirred by the life and movement of
the House and enjoyed a good Parliamentary debate, but he had a
feeling that politicians were apt to mistake illusions for realities
and to think that words could take the place of deeds.

In the last three years of his life, though his democratic sympathies
never waned, some of his opinions underwent a change. He was
disappointed at the indifference of the masses of the people to their
own interests, at their low standard of taste, at the ease with which
they could be exploited by charlatans. I remember his telling me once,
in 1915, _apropos_ of the blatancy of some noisy patriots: "I now
realise for the first time what Dr. Johnson meant when he wrote,
'Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.'" He disliked the
squalor of the political game and the glibness of tongue and tenuity
of thought of the mere politician. A generous-minded youth of high
ideals, he had not learnt to make allowances for political human
nature, or for the fact that the mass of mankind are necessarily
occupied with _petits soins_ and apt to be dulled by the mechanical
routine of their daily lives. Latterly he often told me that, after
all, there was a great deal to be said for the rule of the enlightened
autocrat. "But," he said, "the mischief is that you can't guarantee a
succession of enlightened autocrats; so we must make the best of the
rule of the majority." The backwardness of England in education used
to make him wring his hands. To lack of education he attributed the
tawdriness and vulgarity of popular taste. I thought my own political
and social views were advanced: to Paul I was little better than a
Whig with a veneration for Mr. Gladstone. He had a bold,
forward-looking mind, and was in favour of root-and-branch changes. He
was only 21 when he died, and his views on social and political
questions would doubtless have been modified in one direction or
another had he lived. But his passion for liberty of thought and
action and his deep sympathy with the unprivileged multitude would
have remained, for these things were inherent in his character. He
would have said with Ibsen: "I want to awaken the democracy to its
true task--of making all the people noblemen by freeing their wills
and purifying their minds."

Literature, athletics, music, politics did not exhaust the interests
of this strong and eager mind. He was a good chess-player, and
followed with lively curiosity the new developments in mechanics and
aviation. Very fond of dogs, between him and our little fox-terrier
there was a tie of deep affection. As indicative of the catholicity of
his tastes I may mention that, going over his papers after his death,
I discovered in the same drawer a manuscript appreciation of Wagner,
"Football Hints," memoranda on "Pascal and Descartes on Method," and
the outline of an essay on "The Norman Conquest and its Effects."



CHAPTER XI

IN THE ARMY

  _Ever the faith endures,
    England, my England:
  "Take and break us, we are yours,"
    England, my own._

                                               W. E. HENLEY.


In the first flush of enthusiasm for the War in 1914 Paul wanted to
join the Public Schools Battalion, but I induced him to postpone doing
so, pointing out that he had been preparing hard for an Oxford
Scholarship, and that there would be ample time for him to join the
Army after the examination early in December. My reasons were
reinforced by his own desire to carry out his duties as Captain of
Football. After winning the Balliol Scholarship, and with the
knowledge that the number of recruits for the Army at that time was
far in excess of the provision of equipment, he was persuaded to stay
at Dulwich College till the end of the football season. But he became
very restless in the early months of 1915. He had never cared for
military exercises, much preferring free athletics, but in 1914 he had
joined the O.T.C. at the College. He assiduously applied himself to
drill and took part in many marches and several field-days. Meanwhile
he followed every phase of the War with fascinated interest. He read
all the War books he could get and began a War diary, which he entered
up every week-end, giving a succinct account of the War's progress on
land and sea and in the air. This diary he continued until he entered
the Army, and at his request I have kept it up since.

From copious entries by my son under the dates named the appended
excerpts are taken. They indicate with what intelligence and
comprehension he followed every phase of the War.

     _August 18, 1914._--The British Expeditionary Force has landed
     safely in France: embarkation, transportation and debarkation
     carried out with great precision and without a single casualty.
     Our men have made a magnificent impression on the French people
     by their athletic demeanour, cheerfulness and orderly discipline.
     Their arrival a source of great moral strength to France.

     The Belgian King and Staff have left Brussels for Antwerp.

     _August 30._--News filtering through of the retreat from Mons.
     After the battle of Charleroi and the collapse of the French on
     our right, the British troops fought stubbornly, but had to fall
     back before enormous forces of the enemy, which sought to
     annihilate them by sheer weight of numbers. In most difficult
     circumstances the ten days' retreat was carried out with
     wonderful skill.

     _September 3 and 4._--The Germans now within forty miles of
     Paris. Note, however, these important considerations: (1) The
     German losses are terrific; (2) the whole Allied forces are
     absolutely intact and in good order. The situation is very
     different from that of 1870, when the French field armies were
     destroyed before the war had been in progress a month.

     The French Government has quitted Paris for Bordeaux.

     _September 14-16._--It is now evident that the battle of the
     Marne was a great victory for the Franco-British forces. On
     September 6 the German advance southwards reached its extreme
     points at Coulommiers and Provins. This movement was covered by a
     large flanking force west of the Ourcq watching the outer Paris
     defences. The southward movement left the enemy's right wing in a
     dangerous position, as the Creil-Senlis-Compiègne line, by which
     the Germans had advanced, had been evacuated. The Allies attacked
     this wing in front and flank on September 8, and a French Army
     was hurried from Paris to attend to the flanking force. The
     frontal attack carried out by French and British. The enemy
     retreated skilfully to the line of the Ourcq, and from here tried
     to crush the French by a counter-attack. This failed utterly,
     and the enemy right wing-fell back over the Marne on September
     10, pursued by the French and the British. Large captures of
     German prisoners and guns.

     _September 16._--Official report of the Belgian Commission on
     German atrocities too awful to read. The horrible things done by
     the Kaiser's brutal soldiery in Belgium must remove every vestige
     of respect for the Germans.

     _September 19-21._--Conflict on the Aisne continues. No decisive
     advantage to either side: both armies now strongly entrenched.

     _September 29-Oct. 2._--The pater came in very gloomy one night
     this week saying he had got information that could not be
     published to the effect that Antwerp must fall in a few days, and
     that the military situation in Belgium is as bad as it can be.

     _October 12-15._--Ostend evacuated by the Belgian Government,
     which has moved to Havre. Germans have occupied Ghent and Bruges
     and are attempting a sweeping cavalry movement to and along the
     coast. This coincident with an infantry advance on Calais, which
     was skilfully checked by a British force that had lain concealed
     near Ypres.

     _October 18._--German troops in Belgium are now in contact with
     von Kluck's army; that is, they are on the right of the force
     that invaded France, roughly on a line drawn from a point a few
     miles north of Lille to Ostend. The Allies still occupy part of
     Belgium including Fleurbaix, Ypres and the surrounding portion of
     the right bank of the Lys. It was feared that the German force
     liberated by the fall of Antwerp would be able to combine with
     von Kluck, so as to effect a great turning movement on the
     Allies' left. Thanks, however, to the excellent railways in
     north-east France, skilful disposition of British and French
     forces, and the stubborn courage of our troops, this danger was
     averted. We have not only checked the movement, but have
     ourselves advanced, and the Allies' line to the sea is secure.

     _November 15-22._--Lord Roberts died of pneumonia. He breathed
     his last at St. Omer in sound of the guns. He had gone to France
     to greet his beloved Indian soldiers. A fitting end for this
     really great man.

     _December 13-20._--On Wednesday morning, December 16, German
     warships bombarded Scarborough and Hartlepool. This incident of
     no military value, but (1) it is a distinct "buck-up" for the
     Germans, as no hostile shots had struck any part of English soil
     before since the days of de Ruyter; (2) it may arouse unpleasant
     misgivings among unthinking people as to the functions and
     efficiency of our Navy. A tip-and-run bombardment only possible
     because the Germans can concentrate on any selected point of our
     coast, whereas we have to guard its whole length. Scarborough an
     undefended town, and the bombardment a gross breach of
     international law; but we are getting used now to that sort of
     thing.

     England has formally taken over Egypt, which hitherto had only
     been in our occupation, Turkey's suzerainty being recognised. The
     old Khedive, who is absent from the country and intriguing with
     the enemy, deposed, and Hussein Ali appointed Sultan.

     _December 20-27._--Full story of the Falkland Islands victory now
     published. This swift, clean and sure naval stroke appears to
     have been planned from London by Sir John Fisher, the First Sea
     Lord. Von Spee, the German Admiral, with his two sons and other
     officers, went down on the _Scharnhorst_, refusing to surrender.

     _January 3, 1915._--A rather blunt note from the U.S.A.
     complaining that American merchant vessels have been stopped and
     searched by our warships without justification, that serious
     delays have been caused, and that American commercial interests
     have suffered. Specific instances quoted, and freedom of American
     ships from molestation in the future demanded. It is the old
     question of the right of search come up again.

     _January 17-24._--On Tuesday the famous Zeppelins made their
     first appearance on the English scene. Several of the airships
     appeared over Yarmouth, King's Lynn, Sheringham, and Sandringham.
     Many bombs dropped, but absolutely no military damage; total
     result, a number of innocent people killed and injured. This
     marvellous achievement said to have given vast joy to Berlin.
     Well, they are easily pleased. The destructive power of the Zepps
     has been greatly overrated.

     _February, 1-8._--Early in the week von Tirpitz avowed Germany's
     intention to torpedo or otherwise destroy every British ship on
     the sea, whether a vessel of war or a merchant trader--this to
     be done without warning. Our Admiralty countered this declaration
     by announcing their intention of using neutral flags for
     non-combatant British vessels--a permissible _ruse de guerre_.
     Thus the _Lusitania_ has set sail from New York flying the
     American flag. "Diamond cut diamond" with a vengeance!

     _February 8-14._--U.S.A. warn Germany that any attack on a vessel
     flying the American flag before it is ascertained whether the
     flag is or is not fictitious will be "viewed as a serious
     matter."

     _February 14-21._--The Germans have gained an immense victory
     over the Russians along a front extending from the Niemen to the
     Bzura, and Warsaw is as much in danger of capture as Paris was
     last September. With marvellous accuracy and skill Hindenburg
     seized the opportunity of using his railways in East Prussia to
     outflank the Russians on both sides. One fact stands out clear in
     the war--the British are the only troops who have as yet held
     their ground against the Germans. Of what use are our Allies?

     _March 14-20._--Neuve Chapelle battle not the success for us that
     the first reports suggested. I fear some disagreeable facts are
     being concealed. The reticence imposed by the Censor is
     deplorable. We have suffered heavy casualties in winning a sector
     of two miles wide by one mile long: our gains disproportionate to
     our losses. We ought to have shaken the German position right up
     to Lille.

     _March 21-28._--Fall of Przemysl to the Russians after a siege of
     203 days. The garrison that surrendered comprised nine Generals,
     ninety-three superior officers, 2,500 subalterns and officials,
     117,000 rank and file. This great success frees a large Russian
     force for active work elsewhere.

     Our Commander-in-Chief in France, Sir John French, in his last
     communiqué talks of a protracted war and warns us against
     over-sanguineness. "The protraction of the war depends entirely
     upon the supply of men and munitions. Should these be
     unsatisfactory the war will be accordingly prolonged."

     In Alsace the French have captured the position of
     Hartmannsweilerkopf; they have penetrated twelve miles into
     German territory.

     _March 29-April 4._--The Dardanelles operations are fizzling out
     in melancholy fashion. Owing to the fact that we began the naval
     bombardment before our land forces had arrived, the Turks have
     been able to repair nearly all the damage. However, now that Ian
     Hamilton has arrived to direct operations in Gallipoli, things
     ought to begin to move.

     _April 5-12._--The French have gained a position which overlooks
     and commands the whole of the Woevre Plain; they are now fighting
     like demons. This district (Lorraine) is very near to the French
     heart. The first substantial advance that the French have made
     since the battle of the Marne.

     No official news of any value from the British front (the Censor
     is hard at work), but for the last six days our casualties have
     been terrible. It is maddening to see this long catalogue of
     brave men killed or wounded and yet to have all information
     withheld.

     The Americans, having fallen out for a short time with us, are
     now quarrelling with the Germans, the cause being a very insolent
     message to the White House from the German Ambassador. In frantic
     tones Count Bernstorff demands that America shall cease to supply
     munitions of war to England and her Allies, his object being to
     neutralise the effect of our sea-power.

Paul joined the Army on April 15, 1915, within a month of his 19th
birthday. His application for a commission in the Infantry was refused
point-blank because of his defective vision. The War Office
authorities, much impressed by his school and athletic record, had
requested him to undergo a special examination by an oculist; and on
receipt of the oculist's report showing how extreme was his short
sight, wrote to me on March 26, "It is quite impossible to think of
passing him for a commission, as his sight is so very much below the
necessary standard." Subsequently at an interview at the War Office he
admitted that if his spectacles were lost or broken he would be
helpless; but he said he would equip himself with several pairs to
provide against such emergencies. It was pointed out to him that in
wet weather rain-spots on the lenses of his glasses would obscure his
vision.

"I am willing to take the risk," was his reply.

"Yes," came the rejoinder, "but as an officer you would be
jeopardising other lives and not merely your own."

He was constrained to admit the force of this reasoning. Nevertheless,
his rejection for the Infantry was a grievous disappointment to him.

Eventually he obtained a commission in the Army Service Corps. He was
very proud to don the King's uniform. On April 15 he reported himself
for duty at a home port which is the principal centre of supply for
our armies abroad. There he remained for over three months. As his
nature was in taking up any work, he got absorbed in his new duties,
and, I am informed, executed them with the utmost efficiency. To keep
himself physically fit he gave some of his leisure to golf and to long
walks, some days tramping twenty miles and more. Looking forward
impatiently to the prospect of going abroad, he used to worry himself
by the thought that he, an athlete, had no more useful work to do than
to superintend the unloading of railway trucks and the loading of
vessels and seeing that supplies were up to specification. At
Whitsuntide his mother, brother and I spent a week-end in the vicinity
of the port where he was employed. One day we visited a little country
town, where he had arranged to join us after his duty was done. Near
to the town was a huge camp, also a hospital for wounded soldiers. We
met Paul on his arrival by train and walked with him to the hotel. On
the way he was kept busy acknowledging the salutes of soldiers who
passed us. At tea he was grave and preoccupied--for him a most unusual
mood. I rallied him on it, and asked whether he was in trouble with
his C.O.

"Certainly not," was his reply, "I get on excellently with the
Colonel."

Then a moment or two later he exclaimed with emotion, "Dad, I simply
can't stand it."

"Stand what!" I exclaimed.

"I can't stand receiving the salutes of men who have fought or are
going out to fight while I spend my time about wharves and
warehouses."

As he spoke his eyes filled with tears. To appease him was not easy.
This outburst was indicative of something more than a fugitive mood.

To his intense delight he received orders to go abroad a couple of
months later. On July 27, 1915, he left England for France, in which
country and Flanders the next two years of his life were to be spent.
His first appointment abroad was that of Requisitioning Officer to the
9th Cavalry Brigade of the 1st Cavalry Division--a Brigade that took
part in the severe fighting of the early months of the War and was now
waiting eagerly for a fresh opportunity to display its prowess. Our
Cavalry officers are a distinct type, with traditions and modes of
life and thought of their own. Paul, to whom nothing human was alien,
studied them with keen curiosity. He found them gay-hearted,
chivalrous gentlemen, and soon shared their enthusiasm for horses. His
experiences with the 9th Brigade are described in his letters. The
psychology of the French peasantry and tradespeople with whom he came
into contact also vastly interested him. It was very responsible work
he had to do for a lad of 19, but he did it ably and zealously. He
liked the work for its variety; it involved a great deal of riding on
horseback and much motoring, and gave opportunities for practising his
French.

Yet from time to time he heard voices from the trenches calling him.
He was always contrasting his lot with the hardships that were being
patiently endured in the front line by, as he would say, "better men
than myself." He received his promotion to lieutenant in the spring
of 1916. His pleasure at that step upward was soon dashed by his
appointment to a Supply Column. This "grocery work," as he
characterised it, was most distasteful to him; he thought of throwing
up his commission and trying to enlist as a private, but finally
decided to seek a commission in the Royal Field Artillery. After two
unhappy months in the Supply Column he was appointed in command of an
ammunition working-party at an advanced railhead in the Somme
battlefield. How he enjoyed this work his letters will show. It
involved, however, the hanging up of his application for transfer to
the R.F.A. In October, 1916, he was appointed Requisitioning Officer
to the 2nd Cavalry Brigade. He rejoiced at his escape from the
inglorious, albeit necessary, work of the Supply Column, and was soon
at home with his new comrades.

As time went on, it became more and more evident that our cavalry
would not have much opportunity in the War. The enforced inaction
preyed upon Paul's spirits, and in December he determined to do his
utmost to exchange into a unit in the front line. In his application
for transfer he put his preferences in this order: 1st, Infantry; 2nd,
M.G.C., heavies; 3rd, Artillery. The authorities, realising that his
extreme short sight disqualified him for the Infantry, assigned him to
the Tank Corps, which he joined on February 13, 1917.

Paul's delight at the change of employment was unbounded. His letters
from the time he joined the Tank Corps sing with happiness. Having
pushed all obstacles aside in order to walk the sacrificial road, he
found great gladness in breasting its steeps. A singular change is
discernible in his letters in the last seven months of his life. No
longer was there any reference in them to political affairs at home or
to international events. He who used to follow the progress of the
world with so much intentness had not a word to say about the change
in the Premiership of Great Britain, or any comment to offer on such
momentous events as the overthrow of the Tsardom in Russia, and the
entry into the war of the United States of America. He was either too
absorbed in his new duties to continue his old habit of observation
and comment, or else his gaze was now turned otherwhere, and he was
following the gleam.

A few weeks before his death I wrote to him suggesting that, as he was
then twenty-one, a joint banking account in his name and my own might
now be transferred to him so that he would have the money under his
own control. His reply was: "I have a large number of serious
questions, coupled with much hard work, engrossing my attention at
present and would prefer to leave all subsidiary matters severely
alone." This letter was a sign, and not the only one, that he was
liberating himself from mundane ties.

Brother officers have told me of my son's happiness in the Tank Corps.
His youthful love of engines had returned in full measure. For his
Tank--a "male," carrying Lewis guns and two six-pounders--he had a
positive affection, and would spend hours pottering about it after his
crew had knocked off for the day. Captain Gates, M.C., who had charge
of the section to which Paul's Tank belonged and who was wounded in
the battle in which my son was killed, came to see us in London in
September. From him we had a full account of the last three months of
Paul's life. Among other things, Captain Gates spoke of his _joie de
vivre_, infectious gaiety, hearty appetite, liberal contributions to
the mess funds. Paul, he said, was the life and soul of the section.
When they were out of the battle-line he used to begin his day by a
plunge in the adjacent river. He would come into breakfast looking
radiant, and even then was ready for a frolic. "Some of us would be a
bit down at times," said Captain Gates, "but Paul never. He was
always merry. He had immense strength. In frolicsome moods he would
lift a brother officer in his arms like a child, hold him helpless,
and then drop him gently on the ground; but it took three or four of
us to get him down. To see him come down a village in his Tank was a
sight; his gaiety was so great, and he had a shout or a greeting for
every passer-by. A braver boy I have never met; he was quite calm and
unruffled under shell-fire. If anything, he was too keen. He always
wanted to be in the danger zone, and was most eager to get into
personal touch with the Boches. I told Major Haslam that whenever Paul
would be in battle it would be a case of the V.C. or death; for him
there could be no medium course. On the morning of 31st July, when he
was thrilling at the prospect of the coming attack, I said to him
before we set out: 'Now, don't be too rash; remember that the lives of
your crew are in your keeping.' Unfortunately he was killed quite
early in the fight by a sniper's bullet. His death cast a gloom over
the whole company. In our own mess we shall miss him dreadfully."

On New Year's Day, 1918, Gunner Phillips, of "C" Battalion, Tank
Corps, called at our house in London, and told us a great deal about
Paul from the standpoint of the men in the battalion. Mr. Phillips, a
young craftsman of high intelligence, spoke with intense affection of
our son, whom he knew almost from the first day Paul joined the Tanks.
He said: "Lieutenant Paul Jones was sociable and most considerate. He
was a grand officer and treated his men like brothers. He would never
ask the men to do what he would not do himself. The result was that we
would all have done anything for him. There are a few rough chaps in
our battalion--men who know the guard-room--but even these yielded
gladly to his influence, and liked him very much. No officer in the
battalion was so loved and respected by the men. One day last summer,
when a number of Tanks had assembled in a wood, our whereabouts were
discovered by the Germans, who at daybreak simply peppered the place
with shells. The order was given to go to the dug-outs. Lieut. Jones,
aroused from sleep, came out half-dressed, but he was as cool as if he
was on parade, and insisted on every man going into the dug-outs
before he himself would take shelter. His merry spirits made him a
great favourite with us all. My own relations with him were
particularly cordial, because I was a Welshman and an athlete."

It was comforting to have these accounts at first-hand of our son's
unalloyed happiness in the last seven months of his life. Countless
brave men, gifted and simple, eminent and obscure, have sacrificed
their lives in this War, none with more complete self-surrender than
Paul Jones. In War as in Peace, he bore himself like Wordsworth's
"Happy Warrior."

  Whose powers shed round him in the common strife,
  Or mild concerns of ordinary life,
  A constant influence, a peculiar grace;
  But who, if he be called upon to face
  Some awful moment to which Heaven has joined
  Great issues, good or bad for humankind,
  Is happy as a Lover; and attired
  With sudden brightness, like a man inspired.

  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  Whom neither shape of danger can dismay,
  Nor thought of tender happiness betray,
  Who, not content that former Worth stand fast,
  Looks forward, persevering to the last,
  From well to better, daily self-surpast:
  Who, whether praise of him must walk the earth
  For ever, and to noble deeds give birth,
  Or he must fall, to sleep without his fame
  And leave a dead, unprofitable name--
  Finds comfort in himself and in his cause:
  And while the mortal mist is gathering, draws
  His breath in confidence of Heaven's applause.



CHAPTER XII

PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS

  _Heaven doth with us as we with torches do,
  Not light them for themselves._
                         SHAKESPEARE: "MEASURE FOR MEASURE."


          _Man he loved
  As man; and, to the mean and the obscure
  And all the homely in their homely works,
  Transferred a courtesy which had no air
  Of condescension....
                  A kind of radiant joy
  Diffused around him._
                                  WORDSWORTH: "THE PRELUDE."


Paul Jones was a prodigious worker. What he accomplished in his brief
life is proof that he did not waste his time. He had an abnormal
capacity for prolonged exertion, whether at work or at play. Such was
the vigour of his physical frame that he was usually fresh even at the
end of a hard-fought game of football. In fact, he hardly knew what
physical fatigue was; and only once, when he was suffering from a
chill, and had to sit for his senior scholarship examination, do I
recollect his exhibiting any sign of mental fag. He found rest in
change of employment. Athletic exercises were a natural antidote to
his strenuous intellectual work; and music lifted him into the region
of pure emotion and soothed his soul with the concord of sweet sounds.

[Illustration: Paul Jones in his 19th Year.]

Though he had read widely and reflected much on human life and
destiny, he wore his culture as lightly as a flower. Even after he had
left college, he retained the sunny outlook, the gladsomeness and the
bloom of boyhood. Wherever he went he carried with him an
atmosphere of joy. Fresh ingenuousness and glowing enthusiasm were
part of his charm. There was a rich vein of the romantic in his
character, but the cast of his mind was philosophical. He had no
patience with superficiality masquerading as wisdom, and was quick to
detect a fallacy in reasoning. A shining trait in him was
truthfulness. He would never compromise or palter with the truth,
either by way of suppression, or exaggeration, or casuistical
refinement. What Carlyle said of John Sterling applied with remarkable
exactitude to Paul Jones: "True above all one may call him; a man of
perfect veracity in thought, word and deed; there was no guile or
baseness anywhere found in him. Transparent as crystal, he could not
hide anything sinister if such there had been to hide."

Affectations in speech or manner, and what schoolboys call "side" or
"swank," he abhorred. His free-ranging mind loved to explore and
inquire, and he would not be hindered from questionings by the weight of
any convention, or the force of any authority. He obeyed Emerson's
maxim: "Speak as you think; be what you are." From the vice of envy he
was entirely free. His generous spirit loved to praise others, and he
was rather prone to self-depreciation. A lenient judge of the actions of
other individuals, he was a stern and exacting critic of his own. He had
a lofty sense of his personal duty and responsibility; and if ever, or
in anything, he fell short of his self-prescribed standard he would, so
to say, whip himself with cords. From his boyhood he was distinguished
by an extreme conscientiousness. "His chastity of honour felt a stain
like a wound." To him conscience was to be reverenced and obeyed as
"God's most intimate presence in the soul, and His most perfect image in
the world." He had a passionate hatred of injustice, and the very
thought of cruelty to human beings or to dumb animals made him aflame
with anger. A master or a games captain who allowed himself to be
influenced by favouritism he despised. Naturally quick-tempered and
impatient, he tried hard to curb these propensities, not always with
success; but if he had wounded or wronged anybody, he was eager to
atone. Quiet and self-contained in strange company, he was joyous and
witty among kindred souls. His manners were cordial and considerate.
Servants--how he hated the name!--adored him, and he was always at ease
among the working-classes. He was essentially a man's man. To women his
attitude was reverential, but he was shy and embarrassed in young
feminine society. He used to say apologetically, "I have no small talk,"
and from the vacuity of the average drawing-room chatter he would
silently steal away.

For religious dogmas he cared nothing, but he bowed in reverent homage
before the Christ. From some marginal notes he has made on Froude's
essay on Newman's "Grammar of Assent," I take these quotations: "After
all, what matter what our dogmas if we really follow the example of
great teachers like Christ, who had nothing to do with creeds or
ritual?" "Every man should be his own priest." The Sermon on the Mount
was his religion. One of his favourite Scriptural texts was the
familiar one from the Epistle of St. James (i, 27): "Pure religion and
undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless
and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the
world."

Froude in one of his essays writes of the necessity for a campaign
against administrative incapacity, against swindling and cheating,
against drunkenness and uncleanliness, against hunger, squalor and
misery. "Hear, hear," is Paul's comment; "this should be England's
war." His tastes were extremely simple. He disliked luxurious modes
of living, and really enjoyed roughing it. During his twenty-seven
months in the Army he never uttered a complaint as to the conditions;
discomfort and hardship seemed only to heighten his cheerfulness. He
was a non-smoker, and virtually a teetotaller, but in France, when
pure drinking water was unobtainable, he used to take wine at dinner.
Though he set no store on money, he was so frugal in habit and spent
so little on himself that he always had money at his command. Giving
was a joy to him. Blest with perfect health, he was not absent from
duty through indisposition for a single day in his two years'
campaigning.

Paul had in eminent degree the gift of personality. There was
something magnetic about him, and in any company he compelled
attention. His whole being conveyed an impression of exuberant energy.
Strength of will, serenity and good temper were expressed in his
countenance. Wherever he went he attracted responsibility to himself.
Sometimes the burden assigned to him was uncongenial; none the less,
he would shoulder it manfully.

Except for the defect of short sight he was a splendid example of the
_mens sana in corpore sano_. On one occasion, in 1911, returning from
a visit to Canterbury Cathedral, we had as fellow-passenger in the
train a medical practitioner of the old school with whom my wife and I
had an agreeable conversation. I noted that from time to time he was
closely observing Paul, then a boy of fifteen. Presently he asked him
to stand up, passed his hands over his back and shoulders, tapped his
chest, and noted his big bare knees. "Heavens!" exclaimed the old
doctor, "what a magnificent boy! He will grow to be a glorious man. I
have never seen such physique or such vitality." This expert opinion
was borne out by our son's physical growth in the next three years.
Athletic exercises assisted in the development of a physique that was
naturally strong. In his nineteenth year he was six feet in height,
and measured thirty-nine inches round the chest. He had exceptionally
broad shoulders. Not an ounce of superfluous flesh weighed on the
sinewy, supple frame. There was about him the fragrance, radiant
vitality and ease of poise that are characteristic of the athlete in
the pink of condition.

Though moulded on a big scale, he was very alert in movement, and had
an easy swinging carriage. The head was large, hair rich and abundant,
complexion fair, the face round and full, forehead high and spacious,
cheeks ruddy with the glow of health, the mouth firm and kind,
revealing when he smiled a perfect set of teeth; the aspect bold and
noble; grey eyes shone like stars behind his gold-rimmed glasses. A
smile of enchanting sweetness often played about the strong, handsome
face. His voice had a caressing note; his laugh was loud, hearty and
musical. Thanks to his abounding health, neither appetite nor sleep
ever failed him. He had only to place his head on the pillow and sleep
came to him on the instant, and he would not stir for eight or nine
hours. As an infant he often slept twenty hours a day. This precious
gift of sleep remained with him to the end; and in a letter to me in
June, 1917, he humorously remarked that though not far away at the
time, he slept undisturbed by the earth-rending explosion that
preceded our capture of the Messines Ridge. His outstanding
characteristic was massiveness--he was massive in physique, in
intellect, in character. He had the ingenuous simplicity that is often
associated with a big physical frame. In him a modest, unpretending
nature was linked to a great soul. In judgment he was very sagacious,
and for all his idealism there was a shrewd practical side to him. A
boyish zest remained to the last one of his principal characteristics.

In the winter of 1916 we moved into a new house which my wife planned
with special regard to the tastes of our two boys. Alas for these fond
plannings! Paul never saw our new home, never worked in the pleasant
library arranged specially for him, never entered the cosy little room
garnished with his athletic trophies and adorned with those engravings
of Beethoven and Wagner which he so much loved. His last visit home
was in May, 1916. He declined leave at the end of 1916 from a fear
that if he took it he might lose the opportunity of transferring from
the A.S.C. The same spirit of devotion made him, when he was appointed
to the Tank Corps, elect to be trained in France, instead of coming to
England. I think that at last he almost dreaded taking leave lest a
visit home might weaken his resolve to walk the sacrificial road. It
was only after his death that we learnt from his brother officers in
the 2nd Cavalry Brigade that he had often told them he was convinced
he would not survive the War. That conviction seemed only to
strengthen his determination to get into the fighting-line. A voice
within told him his place was in the heart of the combat and he obeyed
its monition with joyful alacrity. From the time he joined the Tank
Corps a sort of divine content filled his soul.

Paul found and gave great happiness in his own home. Never moody or
despondent, his sunny disposition made him like a glory in the house.
He enjoyed nothing better than a frolic with his younger brother, of
whom he was devotedly fond. A racy and witty talker, he loved an
argument. Many a verbal joust he and I had together. Our views did not
always concur. We differed in opinion on many matters, including our
estimates of eminent men, alive and dead. For example, my son did not
share my contempt for Rousseau; nor could I share his admiration for
Frederick the Great and Napoleon, those ruffians of genius who wrought
so much evil in the world. Paul, however, adored men of action, and he
forgot the crimes and moral defects of Napoleon and Frederick in
contemplating the splendour of their achievements. Austere though his
own morals were, he nevertheless held that a man capable of great
service to the State ought not to be debarred from performing it by
his religious opinions or the lack of them, or by the nature of his
private life. He felt that you must take genius on its own terms.

What Paul was to his mother and to me I dare not write. Let it suffice
to say that no parents were ever blessed with a richer treasure. His
love for us flowed through the channel of his being like a river
singing on its way. How proud we were of his nobility of soul, his
heroic temper, his many triumphs! Young as he was we found in him a
firm stay and a sure support, and we felt ourselves more secure in
life under the shelter of his strong and radiant personality. We had
cherished high, and I hope not unworthy, hopes of his future--hopes
which, but for the War, would assuredly have been fulfilled. He had
not settled in his mind what profession he would adopt. Law attracted
him once, then repelled him; and I strongly dissuaded him from
Journalism. Politics had a fascination for him, but in no
circumstances would he have become a professional politician, and he
had resolved to earn an income independently. I am inclined to think
that eventually he would have become a professor and a writer of
history. Though it was a quality of his nature to do thoroughly
whatever he put his hand to, he was not ambitious in the ordinary
sense. He had no lust either for riches or fame. Duty, Honour,
Service--these were his watchwords. His desire was to make his life
worthy and gracious, and to use it in the service of humanity. That
ideal he realised. If he had lived to old age he could not have made a
greater thing of his life. Out of the warp and woof given to him by
the Creator he has woven a noble and beautiful pattern. Words cannot
express what his loss means to us. God alone knows the desolation of
our hearts. But Paul has left us glorious and inspiring memories and
we know he has gone to his reward. We feel, too, that though absent
from us in the body, he is with us in the spirit. His mother and I,
after the first stunning effect of our grief was passing, compared
notes about our inner experiences, and we found that the image of our
beloved son in our eyes was the same: Paul looking divinely happy,
standing before us with that enchanting smile we knew so well, and
cheerily enjoining us to "Carry on; carry on!"

  Our love involves the love before;
  Our love is vaster passion now;
  Tho' mix'd with God and Nature thou,
  We seem to love thee more and more.

  Far off thou art, but ever nigh;
  We have thee still and we rejoice;
  We prosper, circled with thy voice;
  We shall not lose thee tho' we die.

A few weeks after Paul was killed I opened a volume of Froude's "Short
Studies." Our son's early death lends significance and pathos to
passages he has marked in this book. Froude, in the essay on
"England's Forgotten Worthies," speaking of honoured old
age--"beautiful as the slow-dropping mellow autumn of a rich glorious
summer"--says: "It is beautiful, but not the most beautiful." Then
comes the following sentence which Paul has heavily underscored:

     There is another life, hard, rough, and thorny, trodden with
     bleeding feet and aching brow; the life of which the Cross is the
     symbol; a battle which no peace follows this side of the grave;
     which the grave gapes to finish before the victory is won;
     and--strange that it should be so--this is the highest life of
     man.

Our son has written on the margin, "The best kind of life that of
constant struggle." Froude goes on to refer to the work in the
sixteenth century of the servants of England, whose life was a long
battle, either with the elements or with men, and who passed away
content when God had nothing more to bid them do. The following
passages are again underlined:

     They did not complain, and why should we complain for them?... An
     honourable death had no terrors for them.

     "Seeing," in Humphrey Gilbert's own brave words, "that death is
     inevitable and the fame of virtue is immortal, wherefore in this
     behalf _mutare vel timere sperno_."

Paul's marginal note to this is, "Compare Browning's 'Prospice.'" I
turn to "Prospice" and I read:

  For the journey is done and the summit attained,
            And the barriers fall,
  Though a battle's to fight ere the guerdon be gained,
            The reward of it all.
  I was ever a fighter, so--one fight more,
            The best and the last!
  I would hate that death bandaged my eyes, and forbore,
            And bade me creep past.
  No! let me taste the whole of it, fare like my peers
            The heroes of old,
  Bear the brunt, in a minute pay glad life's arrears
            Of pain, darkness and cold.

            . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

            And with God be the rest!



PART II

WAR LETTERS



[Illustration: Paul as a Subaltern in the A.S.C.

(From a Photograph by his Brother)]



AT A HOME PORT


From April 15, 1915, to July 26 in the same year Second Lieutenant H.
P. M. Jones was employed at a home port which was, and is, one of the
principal centres of supply for the British Expeditionary Force. He
was glad of the opportunity of obtaining an insight into the methods
of supplying the British Army in the field, and was impressed with the
thoroughness, efficiency, and businesslike promptitude of the Army
Service Corps. He took the earliest chance of quitting this routine
work and applying for service abroad.

                                                _May 15th_, 1915.

     You London folk seem to have been having high times with the
     enemy aliens. It is quite startling and quite pleasant to see
     English people roused to do things at last. I see from the photos
     in the papers that the rioting was done for a great part by men
     of fighting age who ought to be in the Army. It stands to reason
     that it is always the dregs of the population who show their
     patriotism by this sort of behaviour. Still, it is refreshing to
     see someone taking some sort of action. Everybody here is cursing
     the Government for its remissness with regard to Germans and
     Austrians resident in this country. There are exceptions, such as
     Germans who have absorbed the British spirit, but, generally
     speaking, Germans, even if naturalised, must retain their
     patriotic feelings towards their Fatherland, and the patriotic
     German is, of course, England's enemy. Therefore he will try his
     best to do us all the harm he can.

     Personally I think we ought to take stern action in regard to the
     internment of all Germans in this country. My argument is not
     based on trivial ideas of retaliation or punishment, but it is
     based on facts such as the following: (_a_) I am a Britisher,
     Britain is fighting; so I fight for Britain and wish to see her
     everywhere victorious: (_b_) In Nature the strongest survive and
     the weaker go to the wall, and in this war Britain must prove
     herself either the stronger or the weaker: (_c_) Our policy must
     be guided by the idea of proving ourselves the stronger in deeds,
     not words--not by talk of justice or right, because invariable
     universal abstract standards of justice and right never existed,
     and never will exist, in this world. The ideal never was anything
     but a dream--that is why the poet can never be a politician, and
     vice versa. We must not let sentimental considerations stand
     between us and victory. Sounds just like a German talking,
     doesn't it? Yes, I do agree with the German point of view--except
     as regards frightfulness, which is really folly and does not
     achieve its end--but I transfer the point of view to England. Why
     should England allow any rival to stand in her way? In any case,
     are we not the world's greatest political people and the best
     colonisers? Leave the realms of Art to the other nations if you
     like--England never will be artistic, I fear--but Art is not
     politics. Politics--I mean primarily foreign policy--signifies
     the adaptation of a nation to environment of time, place and
     circumstance, and it is that which is the ruling fact of life.

     I am now quite converted to the doctrine of facts. Though
     passionately idealistic in many respects, I realise that the
     _Facts_ of life are in cruel but deadly opposition to the
     _Ideals_ of life, and that while the Ideal remains a dream the
     cruel Fact remains the reality.

     This pseudo-philosophy arises from my having read Arnold
     Bennett's article in to-day's _Daily News_, and also from a
     perusal of Hudson's "Herbert Spencer." Bennett is just an
     idealist, but in dealing with those cruel realities of which I
     have spoken, he seems to me a child. Any attempt to dissociate
     the acts of the German Government from the views of the German
     people--in other words to assume that a great part of the latter
     want peace--is absurd. Look at France in 1870. When the Second
     Empire was overthrown and the Third Republic set up in its place,
     did the Republicans seek peace? No, they proceeded to prosecute
     the war to the utmost and tried to drive the invader off the soil
     of France. And even if in this war a succession of defeats should
     overthrow the German Kaiser and his Government, do you think the
     Germans would submit forthwith, and throw themselves on the mercy
     of the Allies? No, they will fight to the last man, woman and
     child to prevent the Rhine being crossed. So we should realise
     that, for our own safety's sake, we must reduce the German
     military forces to a position of helplessness--in fact, utterly
     destroy them, if we are to have any settlement. It is Germany or
     ourselves; and till one or the other is up or down, the war will
     go on.

     To crush the Germans we must put every ounce into the struggle.
     Are we doing so? I cannot think it when I see Parliament taking
     such a disgraceful line on the question of drink. Small wonder
     that Lloyd George exclaims, "What an ignoble spectacle the House
     of Commons presents now!" I had thought the British Parliament to
     be a great and potent institution. Now I think it is a
     convocation of old apple women. What we want is a Cromwell or a
     Napoleon to knock together the heads of political parties and
     declare, "No more drink." What will history say when it is
     recorded that in the midst of this great struggle the British
     people refused to give up the drink that was poisoning their
     lives and hindering the work of the nation, and that the
     influence of a few brewers and capitalists was sufficient to
     prevent any serious reform being passed in that House which is
     supposed to be the people's representative?

     As for the recent anti-German riots, they seem to me to have been
     organised by those slack loafing elements of the population who
     lounge about refusing to enlist. Still, I suppose this is a
     necessary product of our type of national civilisation. Yet that
     system--the English or insular, I call it--has done, as it will
     do, marvels. So perhaps all is for the best, but I am grieved
     beyond measure at the collapse of L. G.'s scheme for drastic
     treatment of the drink evil. He at least is a man.

     Do you realise what a fine part amateur sportsmen are playing in
     this war? I really doubt if there will be many great athletes
     left if things go on as they are doing. On the same day I read
     that Poulton-Palmer and R. A. Lloyd are gone. Only last year, I
     remember seeing those two as Captains of England and Ireland
     respectively, shaking hands with each other and with the King at
     the great Rugby Football match at Twickenham. I see news is to
     hand also of the death in action of A. F. Wilding, a great
     athlete who neither drank nor smoked. So in three days we have
     lost the most brilliant and versatile centre three-quarter in
     Poulton, the cleverest drop-kick in the world in Lloyd, and the
     world's champion tennis-player in Wilding!


                                                _June 6th, 1915._

     Lloyd George in his two last speeches has said more than anyone
     else during the war. He is an extraordinary man, and at his
     greatest when rallying the workers. I see that the Tory Press is
     enthusiastic about him, and also about Winston Churchill's speech
     of yesterday. L. G.'s remark that "conscription is not
     undemocratic" has set a new train of thought stirring in this
     country. Up to now, in the view of the average Englishman,
     democracy and conscription had been set at opposite poles.
     Personally I am not exactly a democrat, an aristocrat, a
     monarchist, a socialist, or a constitutionalist, but a sort of
     combination of them all, and a firm believer in the Will to Power
     and in the Strong Man. But the point is that England certainly
     inclines to democracy--meaning by democracy _laissez-faire_.
     Hence what is needed in a crisis like this is to bring into
     operation a system which, while partaking of a democratic nature,
     and so not being repugnant to the national type (as developed by
     geography, circumstance and history) may yet bring into play the
     advantages of military training and national organisation. If you
     can persuade the stolid Englishman to adopt a sort of
     semi-voluntary military system, which is voluntary or appears so
     to him, yet puts him under discipline, well then you have an
     ideal system for England to win this war by. Of course, there is
     an alternative scheme, namely, for some man of outstanding
     personality to come along and say, "Look here, I am master, and
     by my force of character I will compel you to bow to a system
     which I know to be good for you and which will in the end benefit
     you." Lloyd George might be even such a man--a Cæsar, a
     Charlemagne, a Cromwell, or a Napoleon.

     But I confess that this amazing English race is hard to bend,
     even when a man of outstanding personality arises. Did not Oliver
     himself--a superman if ever there was one--fail in his efforts to
     make better those whom he ruled? Still, as Goethe says,
     "Personality makes the man," and perhaps even in England a great
     man might force our stubborn nation to his will. But I confess I
     doubt it. Besides, I fear the system would break down as soon as
     the immediate need for it had vanished. We must have regard to
     the evolution of our type of race-species when trying to frame
     measures for its advance to victory over another type of
     race-species, for the simple reason that, if we do not, the
     system we are trying to set up will remain in the air, and never
     come to anything until the people have become sufficiently
     educated in our way of thinking to accept such a scheme. It seems
     to me that you could never make a British Army on a German model,
     or a German Army on a British model, because of the difference
     between the types of the two nations--the only exception being
     where you have a superman with a wonderful mind and personality
     to plan the pattern and enforce its adoption.

     Our problem in England is to organise the very individualistic
     British race without letting them imagine that they are being
     organised. This sounds like the problem about the irresistible
     force up against the insurmountable obstacle. But seriously if
     you have followed my train of thought you will agree with me that
     what is wanted is to frame a system of military service and
     national organisation which yet conforms to the national
     predilection in favour of _laissez-faire_. This would not be so
     difficult if there were two or three centuries to do it in; the
     difficulty is that we must do it at once. Perhaps it is
     impossible; perhaps the influence of our insular environment will
     be too strong ever to allow a general military system to grow up
     here--I don't know, but I hope not. Anyway, it is Lloyd George to
     whom we look to turn the wheels, because he has personality and
     that almost uncanny Celtic gift of seeing into the future.

     Is it not clear that the Germans have developed to the full a
     system of organisation in harmony with their national character?
     Geography has rendered necessary to them a certain type of
     national policy, and I consider their methods were the only
     possible ones for them, though they badly needed a clever
     diplomatist to deceive Europe in these latter years. Now
     Bismarck, if he had lived until to-day, would probably have
     secured for Germany a leading place, not by directly fighting
     England--who is, of course, the natural rival of Germany--the old
     story of the first and the second boy in the class--but by
     embroiling her at some suitable moment with other Powers. Then,
     when all would have been weakened by the war, Germany would step
     in and take the spoils. Fortunately for us the Prussian is a
     thoroughly bad diplomatist; and he has preferred open force to
     policy. Last year the Germans really played their cards
     astoundingly badly. Did we? Well, in one sense, yes, in that we
     failed to have a force ready to give the Germans a swift blow as
     soon as they ventured on an invasion of Belgium. On the other
     hand, no, because Edward Grey, acting openly, and in accordance
     with British traditions, yet succeeded by some extraordinary
     means in duping our enemies and making them rush into a war never
     expecting that we would participate in it. By accident Grey
     blundered into a marvellous stroke of diplomacy. Of course, we
     know that all his actions were governed by an honest desire to
     preserve peace, but the facts show that he really deceived the
     Germans more than Machiavelli would have done. (The Prussian, in
     the average, is very prone to misunderstand his enemy.) The
     Germans thought we would not come in; we did come in, just when
     they were not expecting it; in effect, that was a master-stroke.
     Where we failed was that we were not ourselves ready with an
     adequate force. Though we strangled German commerce at sea and
     helped to save France, we were deficient in many elements of an
     army, and are still woefully so. That is the natural result of
     insularity.

     Now if through the folly of Ministers we lose this great chance
     of settling with our rival, we shall be cutting our own throats.
     You see, I have led you, by a devious path, back to the old
     problem--the necessity for organising England to win this war and
     to establish her national type as supreme. We must take any and
     every step necessary to set this great nation of ours even higher
     than it stands now. Some nation must be political leader of the
     international polity; why not England, whose extraordinary
     colonising and governing ability is so well known? I am tired to
     death of talk about "crushing militarism" and of wild dreams of
     "a union of small States." If you want to see the latter process
     in operation, look at the normal state of the Balkans! States may
     have all the "rights" in the world, but if they are not strong
     enough in a political and military sense, they will never be able
     to maintain them. Since England--great and wise nation that she
     is!--has the sense to use her power benignantly, what harm would
     there be if she were to assert it over weaker national organisms,
     as man has done over the beasts? This would certainly not be
     possible without repeated wars. Subject nations may be treated as
     easily and as freely as you like when under our sway, but they
     must be conquered first, and we must keep our power over them
     even though it is hidden.

     But I am dreaming myself now, for there is nothing eternal in
     Nature except conflict and change; and as our Empire grew, so, I
     fear, it must some day decay. Evolution is no respecter of
     persons. Anyway it is our duty to postpone that day of decline as
     long as we can. In my view England's claims are above all others.
     Our Allies are just so much use to us as we can make of them.
     They, too, have their national ambitions and interests, and, of
     course, if these clashed with ours, they would go off on their
     own. I blame them not at all. It is as well, however, to be
     prepared for contingencies. For example, four or five sparrows
     will combine to attack a larger bird which has a piece of bread.
     As soon as they get the bread the sparrows themselves begin to
     squabble for its possession; and perhaps two or three will set on
     the one that has hold of it and force him to give it up. Such is
     Nature--a theatre of vast, unceasing conflict. Men and nations
     all come under the great immutable law.


                                               _July 19th, 1915._

     This coal strike in South Wales is a baffling business. As usual,
     English lack of system is to blame. The Government ought to have
     taken over all the mines, as they did the railways, right at the
     start of the war. But _laissez-faire_ said "No." Now see the
     result. Undoubtedly men, employers and Government are all to
     blame--the Government for not organising the system and failing
     to stop the increased profits of the owners due to the rise in
     prices; the owners for taking those profits and making all sorts
     of unkept promises during the past year about meeting the men to
     discuss what should be done with war profits; and the men because
     they are imperilling the whole fate of the Navy for the sake of a
     few more pence a day, and for failing to show that generosity of
     spirit which they ought to exhibit in a national crisis like
     this. What gives the lie to those critics who denounce the
     unpatriotic conduct of the miners is the astounding proportion of
     recruits from the affected areas, and the fact that thousands of
     strikers have sons, brothers and other relatives in the trenches.
     The whole thing is almost a judgment on English haphazard
     methods, though I know those methods are only the product of our
     insular position. After all, we fought Napoleon with almost a
     revolution going on in Ireland. And do you remember the Six Acts?
     So history repeats itself.

     The Germans are still astounding the world. This move on Russia
     will, I think, be ranked by military historians in the future as
     one of the most immense things in the story of the war--a
     parallel, but on a far larger scale, with the French and our own
     advance from the Marne to the Aisne. Unfortunately, I am afraid
     the Germans will be more successful than we were on that
     occasion--for we only drove them back 20 or 30 miles, but the
     Germans now seem to be menacing two great cities, half a dozen
     first-class fortresses, and four vital railway lines. There is no
     doubt that they, at least, are not playing at war. And to think
     that it should be Wales that may be half-crippling the Navy when
     we are matched with such a foe! If the Navy fails, then Heaven
     help us! I don't think we can lose even now, but I doubt now if
     Germany can lose. It may be 1793-1815 over again!

     Don't imagine that economics end war. Nations can easily do
     without trade if they will. To win a war, in ninety-nine cases
     out of a hundred, you have to beat the enemy's forces decisively
     in the field and put large bodies of his troops permanently out
     of action, or capture important tracts of territory such as corn
     land or mining districts, without which he cannot wage the war.
     Nothing has done us more harm than all this talk about
     "attrition." People say, "Oh, it's all right, we can strangle
     Germany by means of our Navy, and only time is wanted." As a
     matter of fact, Germany is so well prepared by environment,
     history, and her own endeavours for such a war that were Berlin
     itself in our hands, I would not like to say we should have won.
     Berlin has in the past been entered by the enemy, and yet the
     Germans have defeated their foes. Look at Frederick the Great--he
     won his wars with half his own country in the enemy's hands. Make
     no mistake, we shall have to cut the German Army to pieces if we
     are to win. And we shall not succeed, at least not for any
     practical purpose, unless we put every man into his right place
     to win the war. We want the shell-makers at home, the soldiers in
     the field, the mere politician on the scrap-heap, and capable men
     at the head of affairs. There must be no more of this muddling
     War Office policy, no more of this defective control of vital
     industries and these scandalous deficiencies in equipment.


WITH THE 9th CAVALRY BRIGADE

On July 27, 1915, Paul Jones left Waterloo Station for service abroad.
Shortly after his arrival in France he was ordered to proceed to the
Headquarters of the 9th Cavalry Brigade (1st Cavalry Division), having
been appointed Requisitioning Officer to the Brigade. His thorough
knowledge of French was the determining factor in securing him this
appointment, a very responsible one for a youth of 19.

                                              _August 5th, 1915._

     At length a chance to write a letter home. I seem to have been
     travelling for weeks, and I had no time for anything but hasty
     postcards. My address may not convey much geographically, but I
     will take the risk of saying that I am very far up country,
     and--which of course pleases me immensely--not many miles from
     the real Front. My work involves a great deal of French
     conversation and much riding and motoring. I am, in fact, a
     Requisitioning Officer, a title which almost explains itself.

     The journey up from the base seemed absolutely endless, but was
     never lacking in interest, so much was there to see. The glorious
     spirits of our men would be a lesson to the Jeremiahs at home.
     Never had I expected, never could I believe possible, that such a
     wonderfully jovial spirit could prevail among men going to
     certain danger and hardship and possible death. I saw a lot of
     Welshmen on the way, and wherever one met them they were singing
     in those gloriously rich Welsh voices.

     How kind-hearted our soldiers are I realised on my journey up.
     Frequently alongside the railway line were groups of French
     kiddies shouting, "Souvenirs!" "Souvenirs!" In response our
     fellows were chucking out to them from the train all sorts of
     things, bully beef, bread, biscuits, etc., and laughing and
     chatting at the windows. What a diversity of tongues and accents
     among our soldiers! Cockney, Lancashire, Scotch, Welsh and West
     Country were easily recognisable. For cheerfulness and kindness
     you will never match the British Tommy.

     I don't see so very much difference between the new and the old
     France, except for the greater number of uniforms; the same gay
     old café-life goes on as always.

     Only four out of the fifteen A.S.C. officers who left London on
     Monday last came up-country, and I was one of the four. Eureka!
     also Banzai! There ought to be a chance of some excitement,
     anyhow. I am in glorious health and spirits and feel very pleased
     with life. Isn't it fine that my desire to be really close to the
     thick of things should be so fully gratified? Tell Hal I had two
     delightful swims at the base.


                                              _August 9th, 1915._

     My mare is temporarily _hors de combat_ with a cut on the hock.
     This is a nuisance, as I have now to rely on the hospitality of
     other officers in lending me either their horses or their
     motor-cars, or, alternatively, go about on a push-bike when I
     have to travel far afield, which happens almost daily. Before the
     week is out I am expecting to go right up into the firing-line.
     One is astounded at the off-hand manner in which officers who
     have been in the trenches take the most hair-raising adventures.
     An artillery officer was telling us to-day with the utmost
     sang-froid of the difficulty he and his comrades had in eating
     their dinner when poison-gas was blowing about. The gas made
     their eyes water to such a degree that everybody at the mess
     seemed to be weeping bitterly. He also told us that for a long
     time they had had no need of réveillé, as the Boches had a habit
     of dropping a Jack Johnson near by every morning at 6.15
     punctually. In the short time I have been out here I have been
     struck with the glorious English coolness and the steadfast
     refusal to get flurried that marks all our tribe.

     In our relations with the inhabitants of the countryside we show
     consideration and strict honesty. Every bit of damage done is
     compensated, every blade of grass is paid for, although
     necessarily we have first to investigate the validity of claims
     for damage. The whole thing is very characteristic of British
     integrity. I am going very strong and gradually getting the hang
     of my work, which is decidedly interesting.

     We had a remarkable concert the other night. The whole
     thing--stage, paints, wigs, orchestra, curtains, scenery,
     everything--was got up by the 1st Cavalry Division Supply Column,
     and most of the performers were A.S.C. men. The most popular
     vocalist turned up on his own, however, viz. Captain the Maclean,
     of Lochbuie (of the 19th Hussars), who is quite an artist in his
     way. This gay, debonair Scotsman is simply worshipped by the men.
     One of the latter (himself holding the D.C.M. and the French
     Médaille Militaire for conspicuous bravery at Landrecies) told me
     Maclean was the bravest man he had ever seen; he is always at the
     head of a rush whether on horseback or on foot, and invariably
     goes into action with a hunting-crop.

     A French Territorial Infantry Regiment marched into the town
     yesterday. They all wore the new grey uniform that is superseding
     the red trousers and blue tunics of the old days. Quite an
     interesting spectacle! But for sheer beauty you should see our
     cavalry on the move. A wonderful sight, I assure you, even
     without all the gay accoutrements of the Military Tournament. In
     fact, to my mind, the field-dress makes the affair even more
     impressive. The horses are simply beauties, and every one of them
     is in perfect condition.

     I have met an old Bedfordian among the cavalry. We have had many
     a chat comparing notes as to the past, especially in regard to
     the fierce-fought struggles of old between Bedford and the
     Blue-and-Blacks. We hope to get some sort of Rugger up when the
     winter comes, though of course a very great proportion of the
     cavalry officers are men from Eton, Harrow, Winchester and other
     schools where, I regret to say, the game of games is not played!
     They will have to be taught.


                                             _August 13th, 1915._

     A lot of cavalry men are up trench-digging and I have had my
     first experience of being up really close to the firing-line. It
     doesn't take one long to get from here to the thick of things,
     and we were soon apprised of the fact by heavy and ponderous
     crashes. Just above us a British aeroplane was winging its flight
     towards the German lines. Presently one saw small flashes of
     flame in the air all around it, followed by curious little puffs
     of smoke; then came the sound of exploding shells; you know that
     light travels faster than sound. The Boches were potting at the
     'plane. However, the British airman was easily able to clear
     away. After this, a Taube came in our direction and our artillery
     was having pots at it. Pursued by two British 'planes the Taube
     turned tail and skedaddled, passing exactly over our car. I
     wonder it didn't buzz a bomb at us, for the road was crowded with
     cars, lorries, waggons, and columns of marching soldiers. But it
     didn't, and went off as fast as it could lick.

     We soon reached a village which, during the previous day, had
     been subjected to a mild bombardment. The results even of a few
     shells were staggering. A large number of the houses and the
     village church were shattered into atoms; nothing left but heaps
     of bricks, with here and there a wall standing amid the débris.
     To me it was a remarkable spectacle, though my companions assured
     me that this village was in a positively palatial condition
     compared to other places farther up. Just as we reached the
     troops we were destined for, an appalling crash rent the air, and
     went echoing away like a peal of thunder. It was the British
     heavy artillery at work, though we couldn't see any batteries.
     Meanwhile the Boches were aiming at our aeroplanes which were
     flying above us continually. Amid all this our fellows were quite
     unmoved, and an exciting game of Soccer was in progress, every
     successful effort being cheered to the echo by the soldier
     spectators. And that, mind, though only last night the Boches put
     twenty-eight of our men out of action not far from this very
     spot, landing three shells on top of them at midnight, killing
     one and wounding twenty-seven others, not to mention several
     horses.

     Our route now lay along a road roughly parallel to the
     firing-lines, and only a few miles behind them. We passed several
     camps, where all sorts of regiments were quartered. Then we came
     to quite a big town, which was packed with lorries and field
     ambulances, and with columns of British soldiers, always
     cheerful, though in many cases much fatigued. Finally we came
     back to our quarters. To me the whole experience was most
     interesting and exciting, and I am eagerly looking forward to a
     repetition of it. Next time I shall go right up to the real
     centre of things. It is great to be so near the scrapping, and I
     only hope a chance of real fighting does come my way. Anyhow, I
     am ready to do my duty, whatever it may be.

     Well, the Germans have got that Petrograd-Warsaw railway.
     Apparently some people anticipate an advance on Petrograd itself.
     The war is assuming a phase very like that of the Napoleonic
     struggles. I hope 1812 repeats itself, but candidly I don't think
     that the Boches will put their heads into the lion's mouth by
     risking an advance into Russia with winter coming on.


     TO HIS BROTHER

                                             _August 18th, 1915._

     I am very busy, but my work is becoming more and more
     interesting, and I am about in the open air almost all the time.
     To-day I have had a twenty-mile horse-ride. My little mare ran
     like clockwork. She is a gem of a horse. I am hoping also to get
     some motor driving. There is no speed limit here. Talk about
     express trains! No; Rugby football is not much appreciated by the
     9th Brigade. Cavalry officers swear by polo. To see them play a
     polo match is a sheer delight, for they are the best horsemen in
     the world.

     Many men of our Cavalry Division are at present employed in
     making a reserve line of trenches some distance behind the real
     article. Our own brigade is digging vigorously in the grounds of
     a fine old château. The Supply Officer and I, as his understudy,
     go up continually in a car conveying special supplies and to do
     various other duties. The château grounds are well within enemy
     gun range, and most of the neighbouring buildings have been blown
     to atoms. Yesterday the first news that greeted us from the
     trench-diggers was that they had been bombarded that morning by
     gas shells, among other pleasant surprises. While we were
     pursuing our duties I heard a boom, followed by a long, sighing
     screech, then a violent crash about fifty yards off. It was a
     German shell. Another and yet another followed. Suddenly an
     R.A.M.C. man came running up to fetch a stretcher--someone had
     been knocked out. As the nearest man at hand I joined him in
     carrying the stretcher, and we doubled our fastest for the trees
     where the first shot had pitched. We found that an R.A.M.C. man
     had been struck above the ankle by a piece of shrapnel. The wound
     was small, but deep and ugly, and the leg was broken. The poor
     chap was in terrible pain. We conveyed him as carefully as we
     could to the field ambulance. There had been other casualties
     hereabouts in the morning.

     More and more shells, and then a lull. After this exhibition of
     afternoon hate, we took tea with some officers of the 15th
     Hussars in a tent in the château grounds. It was a delicious
     meal, and was not interrupted, though enemy shells from time to
     time shot over our heads and exploded some distance away in the
     woods behind. The ineffectiveness of the enemy shelling was
     greeted every time there was an explosion by cat-calls, shouts
     and whistling on the part of our imperturbable soldiers. Then the
     enemy diverted his guns to a village through which our return
     road ran. On our approaching this place we found our way barred
     by military policemen, who informed us the traffic was
     temporarily held up, and that we would have to seek our
     destination by another and a more devious route. Looking back,
     one is amused at the nonchalance of this tea in the open with the
     Hussar officers, while German missiles were shooting over our
     heads and crashing to earth a couple of hundred yards away. Had
     the enemy shortened the range we should all have gone up among
     the little birds.

     Did you see that splendid joke in _Punch_--an old man talking to
     a very badly wounded Irish soldier swathed in bandages from head
     to foot? The former says, "This is a terrible war, isn't it, my
     man?" Pat replies, "Yes, sorr, it is that; a rale tirrible war.
     But faith! 'tis better than no war at all." Capital, and so
     deliciously Irish!


                                             _August 23rd, 1915._

     Excessively busy days these--out sometimes from nine in the
     morning till about ten at night, often missing meals perforce. A
     few days back I was in the city whose name practically sums up
     the character of British fighting--Ypres. Never have I seen such
     a picture of desolation. Not a house standing; only skeletons of
     buildings, shattered walls, and gaping window openings, from
     which all vestige of glass has long since disappeared. The Church
     and the Cloth Hall are simply piles of débris. To walk along the
     streets is like a kind of nightmare, even when the Boches are not
     indulging in a spell of hate against the place. Talk of
     Pompeii--why, this puts it quite among the "also-rans." What a
     pathetic spectacle to see a whole city in ruins! Stupefaction and
     sadness at the wholesale destruction is my impression of this
     melancholy ruin of an historic town.

     Having seen my rations delivered to our regiments, I and my
     companions (two Hussar officers) visited a battery of 5-inch
     howitzers at work not far off, through the medium of a friendly
     Artillery officer. Their headquarters have been amazingly lucky
     in not being hit up to date. They told us that there was going to
     be great "strafing" that night, that the Boches were very good
     gunners, but that they and the French sometimes became
     quarrelsome and loosed off at each other like fury for a short
     time, both sides doing very little real damage. As we were
     chatting a long whistle-blast betokened the presence of a Taube,
     and our companions quickly dragged us out of sight into a
     dug-out, lest the enemy airman should spot men about and send
     back the range. You must understand that the guns are so
     concealed that it is almost impossible to see them even when you
     know where they are located. After the aerial visitor cleared
     off, we had a great tea, with all the ground about us shaking to
     the reverberation of the battery discharges. Presently a
     long-drawn-out screech in the distance, and a fearful crash in
     the middle distance. "That's Percy again!" said the Artillery
     officer. We found that "Percy" is the name for a German
     17-incher, which frequently drops shells ten miles behind our
     lines. The smallest crater made by his shells would accommodate a
     locomotive engine with ease. "Percy" is no doubt "some gun," as
     the Yankees would say. It was a curious sensation to walk about
     the fields with shells from both sides flying over one's head.
     Some gas shells had been discharged that day, and the air in
     places was quite heavy with the odour of them--not unpleasant to
     smell, but most mephitic, and apt to make your eyes water.

     Whom do you think I met on the main road up to-day? None other
     than Reggie Lloyd, who was one of my best pals at Dulwich. Our
     car was moving very fast and overtook his. I stopped and jumped
     out, and we exchanged a firm handshake and a few words before we
     had to be moving on again "in the cause of duty." He is a second
     lieutenant in the R.E., and looked thundering fit. To-day I saw
     him again. On this occasion he was moving about fifty miles an
     hour on a motor-bike, and we only had time for a hand-wave as
     we passed. What a thrill to meet an old pal like that out here in
     the fire zone!


                                             _August 28th, 1915._

     To go up the road from here to the firing-line is a great
     experience. You see, as you pass along, all the multifarious
     items of army organisation--long lines of lorries, horsed-wagons,
     limbers, guns, columns of marching men, motor-cars by the score,
     French soldiers, British soldiers, aeroplanes spinning merrily
     overhead--truly a wonderful spectacle. You have no conception of
     the abominable state of the main roads out here. The _pavé_ road,
     peculiar to these parts, is always a bone-shaker at the best of
     times, but now, after the passage of so much heavy traffic, it is
     simply appalling. A curious feature is the extraordinary
     straightness of the main roads, down which you can literally see
     for miles. The by-roads, on the other hand, seem to abound in
     right-angled turns, and it is not an easy matter to drive a car
     along at any considerable rate of speed.

     My knowledge of French has come in very useful indeed, but for
     these outlying country districts a knowledge of Flemish would be
     even more valuable. Many persons about here speak not one word of
     French, and Flemish is almost always used by the people _en
     famille_. It is a kind of mixture of low German and middle
     English. I can usually get at people's meanings, and even make
     them understand mine, by a jargon embracing sometimes words from
     Chaucer and sometimes a little German. Listening to the language
     when spoken one is reminded of rather nasal Welsh. There is a
     distinct resemblance between the general sound of Welsh and
     Flemish in conversation.

     These parts constitute one of the most Catholic districts in
     Europe; the people are quite as devout as those of the south of
     Ireland. Wherever you go on the roads you are confronted with
     shrines--little structures with an altar, holy images, etc., that
     can be seen through a glass window barred across with slender
     pieces of iron. Above the door is an admonition urging the
     passer-by to stop and say an "Ave" or a "Pater." All the
     dedications to saints and the Virgin are in Latin. For example,
     this is a very common heading for a shrine, "_Ave, Maria, gratiæ
     plena._" I have also seen shrines dedicated to some of those old
     chaps that Dad is so interested in--Antony of Padua, Francis of
     Assisi, etc. All over the place you meet, stuck in boxes with
     glass fronts and mounted on poles, tiny waxen images of various
     saints, or Christ on the Cross, the Virgin Mary, etc., etc. When
     a native comes to one of these shrines or images, he pulls off
     his hat, crosses himself, repeats a prayer, and passes on,
     probably confident that his sins are forgiven. Everybody goes to
     Mass at the church of his commune at seven o'clock each morning,
     and often in the evening as well--on Sunday about three times.
     Church spires are about the only landmarks in this very flat and
     rather uninteresting country. The towers vary between the square
     and the spire. The church itself is always large and quite
     imposing. You don't see churches of anything like the same size
     in English villages of corresponding population. A common sight
     as you ride along these roads is to see the curé, dressed in a
     long black surtout and a huge wide-brimmed hat just like "Don
     Bartola," the music-master in the opera of _Il Barbiere de
     Siviglia_. The curé gravely salutes you as you pass by, "Bon
     jour, mon ami!"

     I am billeted with very decent folk, extremely devout Catholics.
     The old man is the secretary to the Mayor. He spends his spare
     time learning English, and can read an English newspaper quite
     well. My room is of the kind I like--plain, with two huge windows
     opening like folding-doors, and only a tiny carpet to attract the
     dust; the rest clean, bare boards. In the room are two waxen
     images, one of the Virgin and Child, and one of Christ carrying a
     child in His arms; also a waxen model in a case of glass of the
     Virgin and Child, besides no fewer than three crucifixes. This is
     only characteristic of the whole village: every room I've seen
     hereabouts seems crowded with images. There are lots of these
     images, chipped and smashed, lying about the streets of Ypres. I
     suppose where you are at present [Scotland] everybody is a
     Presbyterian and very much against all ritual. There is at least
     this resemblance between Scot and Flemish: they both call the
     church "kirk" or "kerque." It is rather amusing to think that,
     according to the ideas of some English Churchmen, both Scottish
     Presbyterian and Flemish Catholic are lost for ever; while the
     Baptist of Llanelly is equally convinced that all three of them
     are; and each imagines the other to be hopelessly wrong. The war
     has this advantage: that it cuts athwart of all such ridiculous
     distinctions--for have we not among the Allies English Churchmen
     and Nonconformists, Catholics, Mohammedans, Hindus and secular
     Frenchmen, all fighting on the one side against another side
     which includes Catholics, Protestants and Mohammedans? I say what
     matter what a man believes if he does his duty?

     The last two or three days I have spent in more or less local
     work, meaning by that districts within about ten miles of
     headquarters. I have been in the saddle all day, from 9 _A.M._ to
     7 _P.M._, the only interval being for lunch. Riding is glorious
     sport. I don't think I shall ever be able to live without a horse
     in the future. I have been using here one of my own mares, and
     a fine charger belonging to a 9th Lancer employed at H.Q. (you
     remember it was this regiment that made the famous charge at Le
     Cateau back in October). It is a glorious steed this, full of
     "devil," and a bit bad-tempered. My own big mare is a rather
     quiet horse, very good at trotting long distances; my other one
     is smaller but more fiery. I prefer to ride whenever possible a
     horse that really takes some managing.


                                           _September 8th, 1915._

     I am glad you are invigorated and pleased with your trip to the
     land of Burns and Harry Lauder. The Scottish Highlands are the
     exact opposite of these flat plains. Never in my life have I seen
     a district so absolutely level as this. There are but three hills
     in these parts, and these are the only landmarks for miles and
     miles. Otherwise every road is like every other, every field and
     every clump of trees the same. The roads are all either dead
     straight or, in the case of side roads, full of right-angle
     bends. There is nothing of that sinuous curving which
     characterises English country roads. As you get nearer the
     firing-line the roads become worse owing to the passage of Army
     traffic, till finally they end up in mere broad tracks full of
     holes and humps. When the weather is bad the mud is
     appalling--even the Dulwich footer-ground variety comes a bad
     second--added to which there is, in the case of main roads, the
     nuisance of a most unlevel _pavé_, which, it is true, keeps free
     from mud, but to travel along which in a motor-car is torture.
     The way the Army lorries go bumping along--many of them old
     motor-buses with the top parts discarded--is stupendous. It is a
     strange sight occasionally to see approaching you a real
     motor-bus, painted grey and full of Tommies. I almost stopped
     one the other day, near the fire zone, and asked to be taken to
     Oxford Circus; it all seemed so familiar.

     The news from Russia isn't very inspiriting. It looks as if Riga
     and Rovno will follow in the wake of Warsaw and Novo-Georgievsk.
     Not that the mere capture of a town means anything in itself, but
     the Boches must be getting a store of ammunition and guns through
     their successes. Still, it might be that 1812 would repeat
     itself, though I fear the Germans have studied history too well
     to fall into the pit that destroyed Napoleon. _Nous verrons._

     I went down the other day to an advanced Field Supply Depôt. I
     often think of the steady flow of goods across the Channel from
     the home port where I began my Army experience, and the vastness
     of the silent work behind the scenes that is needed to keep the
     Army going. You would be amazed to find how little is known even
     in the A.S.C. itself of that which I have been privileged to see.
     It has a spice of romance about it, this moving of vast stores
     from England to the trenches. Out here one gets fresh bread and
     meat regularly. There are also ample supplies of preserved meat.
     As for "bully" beef, it is rare good stuff, and I am by no means
     averse from the hard Army biscuit.

     It is the chief part of my duties to make local purchases or
     requisitions of goods as they are needed. Local resources are
     always used to the utmost, though G.H.Q. is careful to insist on
     all goods being duly paid for, or an official requisition-note
     being handed to the seller. You will realise that in this sort of
     work I get a lot of practice in French. The French spoken in
     these parts is very thick, quite different from the metallic
     French of Paris.

     I am told that when we are moving in the field, cavalry go twice
     as fast as any other branch of the Service. When we begin to
     move, my job will be really most exciting and interesting, as I
     shall have to be right on ahead with a store of supplies, bought,
     requisitioned, or obtained somehow, to keep things going till the
     ordinary service of lorries and horsed wagons adapts itself to
     the new conditions. Whatever happens I hope to see some sport.

     I get on excellently with the cavalry officers. They have a
     bright charm of their own and are absolutely fearless. Most of
     them are descendants of the old English and Scottish chivalry.
     They are intensely Conservative in opinion, not over
     intellectual, but men with fine traditions and noble instincts.
     They have a passion for horses and all things equine.


                                          _September 16th, 1915._

     So you have had an experience of the Zepps. I am glad London bore
     it philosophically. I never imagined that it would be possible
     seriously to perturb the people of England by this species of
     frightfulness. As Dad puts it, "Curiosity quite mastered every
     sense of fear," but if the Zepps. are to continue paying visits
     to our suburb, you may have to evacuate 198 and dig yourselves in
     in the garden with communicating trenches leading from your
     dug-outs to Croxted Road and Herne Hill.

     It is splendid how our fellows keep rolling up to fight, for,
     believe me, the war is no joke out here. Very few people who have
     been out think it's all a death-or-glory sort of business. On the
     contrary, it is a steady and persistent strain, a strain under
     which the strongest nerves are apt to give way after a time--I am
     talking, of course, of the trenches. When the cavalry go into
     action as cavalry, they are bound to suffer fearfully, being so
     exposed, but there's no doubt that they will do their job, and
     put a still greater number of the Boches out of action. This is a
     war in which there is nothing picturesque or romantic. It takes
     all the cheerfulness of the British Tommy to overmaster the
     grinding strain of trench warfare, though as man is by nature a
     fighter, he presently begins to throw off the trammels of
     civilisation and live _à la naturelle_. The British soldier has
     done marvels in this war. Nothing but his irrepressible spirits
     and lion-hearted courage would have held up this great host of
     Boches armed with new and strange implements of war and with
     every weapon known to science.


                                          _September 18th, 1915._

     In an interval of relaxation, our division gave a Horse Show
     to-day. To these cavalrymen, horses are as meat and drink, almost
     the one topic of their conversation, at once their delight and
     their business. A lot of notabilities from various places in
     France came up to see the Show. It was the most magnificent
     display of horseflesh I have ever seen. It was held in a large
     open field. The programme included competitions for officers' and
     troopers' horses (light and heavy), driving for the limbers of
     the regiment, work by machine-gun sections, races, jumping,
     turn-out of A.S.C. wagons, and what-not. A wonderful display was
     that of the officers' chargers, in which the long line of
     competitors rode, trotted and galloped past the General who was
     judging. Some of the men's horses were also very good, and really
     ran the officers' chargers close for merit. The first three
     prize-winners would be worth a clear £450 apiece. To describe the
     efficiency of the wagon-driving, the smartness of their turn-out,
     the quickness and neatness of all their manoeuvres, is beyond me.
     There was no lance or sword play. The whole business had been
     arranged to see that everything was as efficient as possible, and
     to promote a spirit of healthy rivalry among the different
     regiments. It was an extraordinary spectacle, not fifteen miles
     from the firing-line, with the big guns booming in one's ears the
     whole time--very characteristic of the Englishman's love of sport
     and its value to the nation. This is one of the things that the
     Boches never can, or will be able to, understand. They cannot
     realise how these "mad English" can forget the War when in the
     middle of it, and when any minute their "sport" might be
     interrupted by a "Jack Johnson." I was with our Brigade
     Veterinary Officer, who, of course, is an equine expert. It was a
     treat to hear him telling off the points of the magnificent
     chargers passing in front of us, pawing the ground and snorting,
     full of dash and fire. To me the whole affair had a profound
     interest. I have never enjoyed myself more, and really its
     psychological significance was immense.

On the morning of 25th September, 1915, the 1st and 4th Corps of the
British Army delivered an attack on the enemy line between La Bassée
Canal on the north and a point opposite the village of Grenay on the
south. There were subsidiary simultaneous attacks east of Ypres by the
5th Corps, and north of the La Bassée Canal by the 3rd and the Indian
Corps. Our main attack was made in co-operation with the French
offensive on our right. The British Cavalry Corps was posted in the
neighbourhood of St. Pol and Bailleul-les-Pernes, in readiness to
co-operate with the French Cavalry in pushing home any success which
might be attained by the combined offensive.

                                          _September 23rd, 1915._

     I am about to leave on an official mission, the nature of which I
     cannot disclose to you for the time being. My kit has had to be
     sent away, and I am only equipped with things I can carry about
     me or in my saddle-wallets on the horses. Revolver, haversack,
     official books, map-case and respirator are slung about my body.
     It is fine to be independent of trunks. Last night I bivouacked
     in a field, and one day I was quartered in a mining village which
     before the war must have been a busy place. It reminded me very
     much of the outskirts of Llanelly. I am feeling better in health
     and spirits than ever before.

     An article by a Liberal M.P. that appeared recently in the _Daily
     Chronicle_ annoyed me very much. Previously I had imagined the
     writer to be rather a sportsman and a game fighter; but his
     insulting references in this article to the "good fellows" in the
     trenches, who are "excellent in their time and place," etc.,
     simply set my teeth on edge. I know full well that the type of
     thing that he calls "a voice from the trenches" is only an
     exploitation of sensational newspapers, as Tommy never by any
     chance in my experience of him talks of subjects like
     conscription. But the sheer cruelty of this M.P.'s patronising
     talk of the men who are dying by thousands to keep him and his
     kind safe at home absolutely surpasses everything. The suggestion
     that the man at the Front knows less of how to run wars than
     M.P.s who have, in all probability, never seen a drop of blood
     shed or a gun fired in anger in their lives, is, on the face of
     it, ludicrous. We have heard a lot about the Army not interfering
     in politics. Well and good; but let the politicians cease to
     meddle with military affairs, unless, of course, it is manifest
     that the most sacred civil rights of the people are being
     sacrificed to a caucus of officers, like those who tried to hold
     up the Home Rule Bill.

     To-day a big detachment of German prisoners was brought into the
     village. They were well dressed and equipped, and in reasonably
     good spirits.


                                             _October 3rd, 1915._

     Life continues to use me well, though in the last week or two I
     have been all-ends up with work. I have usually managed to keep
     fairly dry, but the weather is awful, and despite mackintoshes
     and greatcoats galore, I have been absolutely soaked on more than
     one occasion, especially one night about four days back, when I
     had to sleep in the open on a heath in pouring rain, and with a
     bitter wind blowing. However, one thinks but little of that sort
     of thing when campaigning, and I have never been better in
     health.

     I wish I could describe to you some of the scenes I witnessed
     during the past week, above all, on that never-to-be-forgotten
     day before the great attack was made. We found ourselves moving
     along the same road as the Guards--Grenadiers, Scots, and
     Welsh--who were going up to the attack (the Welsh Guards had
     never been in action before, having only recently been
     constituted, but I hear they did great things). Never had I seen
     such a sight as that evening before the attack. On one side of
     the road our cavalry, on the other the Guardsmen, all moving
     forward to the accompaniment of the sound of guns booming
     sullenly ahead. We halted for a time beside a detachment of Life
     Guards, among whom I recognised an old Alleynian named Kemp, whom
     I had not seen since last October. We had a few minutes' pleasant
     conversation before passing on with our respective columns.

     A day or two ago I was to have gone right up to the battlefield
     with supplies, but a sudden change in orders made it impossible.
     However, a number of our lot were up there. They tell me it was a
     fearful scene--the ground littered with corpses, and all the
     débris of a battlefield scattered around. I was bitterly
     disappointed at not getting right up, but duty is duty, and I
     had orders to do other things. We all hope that the day of the
     great move forward has now begun to dawn, but there's no doubt it
     will be a devil of a job, as the Boches are fighting like hell to
     regain the lost ground. All yesterday, last night and this
     morning the guns have been rumbling away with more than usual
     vigour.

     One day last week I visited a soldiers' cemetery; it was chiefly
     used for men who have died of wounds at a casualty clearing
     station near by. A most mournful and yet most impressive
     spectacle it was. As I returned I saw long strings of ambulances
     coming down from the Front--a sight that spoke eloquently of the
     toll that this war is taking of our best. I note you say that the
     new Welsh Division will be going out presently, either to France
     or to the Dardanelles. I hope that they will prove worthy of the
     great name that the Welsh have made for themselves in this war.
     Yesterday I chatted with a Welshman from Pontypridd, a Regular in
     the First South Wales Borderers. He had been out here right from
     the very start, had been twice wounded, and, except for one
     convalescent period of a fortnight, had had no leave at all.
     Chris Fowkes, who was wounded some time back, was in the same
     company as this sturdy Welshman.[1]

         [Footnote 1: Fowkes was a contemporary of Paul's at Dulwich.]


                                             _October 6th, 1915._

     The general impression here now is that the advance is proving a
     very tough proposition. The casualty list is of colossal
     dimensions. All the signs point to a long war.

     A French interpreter is attached to each battalion of British
     infantry, or regiment of cavalry, with a liaison officer, or
     interpreter officer, attached to each brigade in addition.
     Personally, I have never found any need for an interpreter's
     services. I am able to make almost any of my requirements
     comprehensible to the inhabitants, and I think I may describe
     myself as being really fluent in French by this time. It is
     perfectly amazing how few of our people can talk any other
     language than their own.

     That was a piquant incident at the College as described by Hal. A
     little dash of unconventionality like that is wanted in Dulwich
     and in all Public Schools. They, like other national
     institutions, are terribly prone to get into a groove. Though
     that groove be a good one, yet an occasional lift out of it can
     do no harm. But there's no doubt about it that, conservative
     though they may be, our Public Schools have done marvellously in
     this war. The system has proved its value ten thousand times
     over, and never so much as on these gory plains of Flanders and
     the hilly crags of Gallipoli. Of late the officer casualties have
     been fearful, and most of them these days seem to be killed, not
     wounded.

     So Bulgaria seems determined to come in against us. If this means
     that Roumania and Greece join us, I don't see why the Germans
     should be so keen on enlisting the Bulgars on their side. Funny,
     isn't it, how all Europe is falling into the whirlpool of war?
     Every one of the little States finds that the war is a chance for
     it to get something out of someone else--hence its decision to
     join in. I hope our Government won't go sending big forces out to
     Albania or Salonika, or such places, unless and until they are
     sure it would be to England's benefit. For the life of me, I
     can't see why we should carry these footling little nations on
     our shoulders. All they do is to turn on you as soon as your back
     is turned, as _vide_ the Bulgars themselves. The end of it all is
     that everyone is scrapping against someone else for some selfish
     aim, and the main object and high ideals for which we entered
     the war are wholly forgotten.

     I cannot describe to you the muddy conditions out here. Mud lies
     inches thick on the roads, and is kept damp and slimy by the
     continual passage of limbers, horses, guns, wagons and
     lorries--the final result being a veritable swamp. The other day
     a man of the 19th Hussars was watering two horses when he got
     himself and the two animals hopelessly bogged beside the pond in
     a swamp which he mistook for dry ground. Eventually we tugged him
     and the two horses out with ropes. They were all soaked with
     slime and mud from head to foot. As for the infantrymen, when
     they come out of the trenches, they are caked in mud all over. In
     these parts mud is the great feature of the war.


                                            _October 11th, 1915._

     I continue to be very busy. You must understand that it is my job
     to supplement the ordinary supplies that come up on the Supply
     Column from the railway with supplies obtained locally. These
     latter are frequently as essential as the former. Especially is
     this the case with cavalry, who are naturally apt, when moving,
     to get separated from their supplies, owing to the rapidity of
     their progress. Then comes the Requisitioning Officer's real
     task. That is not to say that this is the only case in which he
     has to work. On the contrary, the work is absolutely continuous.
     The men always want all sorts of things that the Supply Column
     does not provide, and it is up to me to get those things, and
     what is more, in most cases, to transport them also. I am in
     charge of a number of wagons, limbers, etc., to carry out this
     latter job, and I am responsible for the care and transport of
     the ordinary supplies for our Brigade Headquarters after they
     leave the Supply Column. I have also to do the following jobs:
     (1) Distribute pay to the large number of A.S.C. men attached to
     Headquarters; (2) when we are in billets, to see to the billeting
     arrangements for the brigade, and adjust the relations between
     the troops and whatever inhabitants there may be.

     You must not imagine that there are no inhabitants in these
     districts. On the contrary, it is my experience that people cling
     to their homes and lead their ordinary lives right up into the
     fire zone. Our authorities take the greatest care not to offend
     the inhabitants. Let me give you an illustration. Recently we
     were at a small village, now quite blown to atoms, and considered
     a hot spot even out here, and which really has no inhabitants.
     Well, on the occasion of entrenching operations our chaps found
     it necessary to take some doors from ruined houses. They wanted
     the timber for planks for trench supports and dug-outs. Though
     all the inhabitants had fled or been killed long before, and the
     village was little better than a dust-heap, yet a solemn and
     portentous court of inquiry was held on those doors: were we
     justified in taking them, and should payment be made for them to
     the old inhabitants or their representatives? Eventually it was
     decided that, as the doors were taken to help to make trenches,
     they might be considered as destroyed by a _fait de guerre_,
     which, I believe, corresponds to an "act of God" in the civil
     courts, and payment ought not therefore to be made for the doors.
     It was, however, pointed out that if the said doors had been used
     to make a road, not a trench, they would not be _faits de
     guerre_, and in such case payment would have had to be made to
     the Mayor of the destroyed commune!

     "Business as usual" is the motto they try to live up to
     throughout these parts, and every effort is made to persuade
     people that the war is only a sort of accident. Money remains
     money, and there are people selling and buying right up to
     places where many lives are lost every day. The position is
     really almost that described in a _Bystander_ cartoon, depicting
     a peasant standing above a line of our trenches amid a hell of
     shot and bursting shrapnel, and saying, "Messieurs, I am
     desolated to trouble you, but I must request you to fight in my
     other field, as I plough this one to-day." By the way, _The
     Bystander_ has succeeded, as no other paper save perhaps _Punch_
     has done, in catching the atmosphere that exists out here.

     I assure you that just behind the firing-line people are minting
     money out of our occupation. Not only do they get paid regularly
     if British troops are billeted on them, but they can name their
     own prices for milk, beer, eggs, etc., and all those other things
     that Tommy is anxious for, and for which he can afford to pay. He
     is, I think, paid three times as much as either the French or the
     Boche soldiers. True, I have met some pitiful cases of
     refugeeism, but to a very large number of people in Northern
     France the war is nothing but somewhat of a nuisance. Of course,
     where they do feel it is in their own terrible casualty lists. I
     have known family after family in the little villages who have
     lost one or two sons. In many communes one finds that the Mayor
     has been killed while serving at the front, and a deputy acts in
     his stead. The Mayor of the place where we are now stationed has
     three sons fighting, one at Verdun. I had an agreeable chat a few
     days back with the local schoolmaster, who was home on short
     leave from the trenches.

     It is curious that only _The Bystander_ and _Punch_ should have
     succeeded in catching the atmosphere of "Somewhere in France."
     Many of the war correspondents, brilliantly though they write,
     have missed it altogether. John Buchan is not so bad, when he
     writes soberly, but he will let his imagination run away with
     him. Talking of writers, what a delightful thing was that article
     of Zangwill's in the _Daily Chronicle_ on "The Perils of Walking
     in War-time"! Its brilliant satire, firm grasp of facts, lively
     humour and racy style quite took my fancy.

     I have had some interesting chats with some of the old soldiers
     in our division about Mons, the Marne and the Aisne, and all
     "those brave days of old." One chap, now acting as a clerk at
     Headquarters, wears the ribbons of the D.C.M. and French Médaille
     Militaire for swimming a river (on the retreat from Mons) amid a
     tempest of shot and shell, and giving warning to a party of our
     people on the other side who were in the greatest danger of being
     surrounded--and quite oblivious of the fact--by the Boches who
     had forced the passage of a bridge some way off. This brave
     fellow led his menaced comrades to another bridge, and so enabled
     them all to get clear.

     The Supply Officer of one of our brigades is F. P. Knox, a
     Dulwich man, who captained the old school at cricket back in 1895
     or so and I believe led Oxford to victory after that. His brother
     you may know--N. A. Knox, the famous fast bowler.

     I was horrified to see in a recent casualty list among the killed
     the name of Second Lieutenant H. O. Beer. I remember him as a
     rather clever, quiet, inoffensive, distinctly popular fellow in
     Doulton's House. He left at the end of July, 1914, without
     getting any colours, but after doing quite well in all games. He
     won a Junior Scholarship, but failed to get a Senior. He was made
     a School Prefect in September, 1913, and you will see him in the
     very middle of the back row of the photo of the Prefects that we
     have--a markedly good-looking fellow, with light hair brushed
     across his forehead. What a wealth of tragedy and yet also of
     honour is expressed in the last line of his obituary notice in
     _The Times_--"He fell leading his platoon, aged twenty years."
     Only yesterday, as it were, we were at school together--I
     remember handing him off with great vigour on the football
     field--and now! It was just the same with poor Reynolds[2] and
     Bray.[3] But I mustn't go on in this strain.

         [Footnote 2: James Reynolds, head of the Modern Side for two
         years. The first Dulwich boy to take the London B.A. degree
         while still at school. Born, 1893. Killed in action in
         Belgium, May 2nd, 1915, while serving with the London Rifle
         Brigade.]

         [Footnote 3: Frederick W. Bray, only son of Mr. W. Bray, West
         Norwood. One of the keenest members of the O.A.F.C. Quitting
         his engineering studies, he joined the 1st Surrey Rifles at
         the outbreak of war. Born, August 26th, 1895. Killed, May
         25th, 1915.]


                                            _October 15th, 1915._

     The Balkan business is a startling knockout for those enthusiasts
     who see in the development of small States salvation for the
     world! If people would only accept the fact that this is a
     material world they would not be surprised at the situation.
     Myself, I consider that our diplomacy has failed, probably
     because it did not offer tempting enough bribes to Bulgaria and
     Greece. No matter; what is the fate of a few tuppenny-ha'penny
     Balkan States, who have never done a thing worth doing, beside
     that of the British Empire! Why should we always play the
     philanthropic idiot towards all these wretched little nations? As
     if any of them--or anyone else, for that matter, in international
     politics--knows the meaning of the word gratitude! However
     righteous our policy may have been, it doesn't seem to have
     worked in South-East Europe, and the Boches appear to have got
     home first there. I don't think it is so much a triumph for their
     diplomacy as a judgment on the blundering stupidity of ours. But
     when all's said and done, the alliance or hostility of a few
     Bulgars, Greeks or Roumanians doesn't count for so much, anyhow.
     "Come the three corners of the world in arms, and we shall shock
     them. Naught shall make us rue, if England to herself do rest but
     true."

     Have you seen the obituary notices of Captain Osmond Williams,[4]
     of the Welsh Guards? His funeral took place not half a mile from
     the spot where we were at the time. The 19th Hussars was once his
     old regiment, and as he was simply idolised by the men, crowds of
     them went to the burial. He had a most romantic career--a career
     that might have stepped out of the pages of Scott or Dumas.

         [Footnote 4: Son of Sir Osmond Williams, Bart., formerly M.P.
         for Montgomeryshire. Served in the South African War, and in
         his day was regarded as the most brilliant cavalry subaltern
         in the British Army. A severe accident in the hunting-field
         compelled him to leave the Army. When war broke out in 1914
         he offered his services to the War Office, but was rejected
         because physically unfit. He then enlisted as a private
         soldier, and by repeated acts of gallantry in the field won
         his captaincy.]

     Yesterday I played Soccer for Headquarters against the 15th
     Hussars. We beat them 2 to 1. However, I can't work up any
     enthusiasm for Soccer. Oh! for a real game of Rugger. Still, the
     Tommies--the English ones, at least--think Soccer the only game,
     so one must cut one's cloth to one's opportunities. It is
     something to get a game of any sort out here. Is the October
     number of _The Alleynian_ out yet? I hope they keep their war
     list up to date. Our Roll of Honour is as good as anybody's, and
     should be carefully attended to.


                                            _October 20th, 1915._

     Whom do you think I met the other day leading a column of motor
     lorries up to our brigade H.Q.? No less a person than G. P. S.
     Clark, the centre three-quarter who scored that wonderful try
     against Haileybury in my first year in the team--running and
     feinting his way through right from his own line. He is a motor
     expert, and has been gazetted to the M.T. branch of the A.S.C.

     Is there any chance of my getting the post of A.D.C. to a Welsh
     brigadier? If the Welsh division is due out presently it would be
     rather a good job. But if it involved my coming back to England
     for any length of time I wouldn't take it. I am perfectly
     satisfied with my present work, but still would very much like to
     become a real combatant. Against the defect of short sight I can
     put the following points:

      (a) Three months of Active Service, almost invariably in the
      neighbourhood of the firing-line; on several occasions right up
      in it.

      (b) I have always been attached to the Headquarters of a Cavalry
      Brigade, have been in the closest contact with the Brigade
      Staff, and have taken my orders from the Staff Captain direct--a
      very large proportion of those orders about real Staff work.

      (c) I have now a real linguistic fluency in French; pretty
      useful German also.

      (d) I have been acting under the supervision of a Supply
      Officer, whose work I do when he is away, and I know the system
      of transport and supply backwards.

      (e) I have a thorough knowledge of how to make up supplies by
      requisition and purchase on the countryside.

      (f) On the march I move at the head of the limbers which form
      the Cavalry Divisional train, and am second in command of them
      all, so I know something about that branch of work, too.

      (g) I am quite a useful horseman.

     You may say on reading the above list of virtues that a glass
     case is the right place for me, but I know to the full that if
     one wants one of these "knutty" jobs one has to represent oneself
     as a sort of little tin god. Now don't imagine that I am
     dissatisfied with my present job. I am more than pleased with it;
     still I am very keen to become a fighting soldier.


                                            _October 25th, 1915._

     My present quarters are in a mill. I have a fine large room, also
     first-rate stabling for my horses. Brigade Headquarters are in
     one of those magnificent châteaux that are dotted over this part
     of France. A gorgeous place it must have been in time of peace,
     and so it is now except that it is beginning to show signs of
     war-wear and constant use.

     I am very bucked with life. All that we would like now would be a
     stupendous advance. This nibbling policy is all very well, but it
     doesn't suit cavalry.

     My horses have just been clipped. It is the customary thing at
     this time of year, as horses' coats get very thick, and in
     consequence they sweat heavily when on the march. The effect of
     clipping is curious in the extreme, as the animal no longer
     appears of its original colour, but of the colour of its skin,
     i.e., mouse-grey. My mare was originally chestnut; now she is a
     dark grey. Horses are much happier with their thick coats off.
     The hair will have grown again in a couple of weeks, but it won't
     be thick for some time. My mare is a grand horse for steady,
     continuous work, also quite a good galloper. I had a gallop for
     two furlongs or so the other day with the Staff Captain and the
     A.D.C., each mounted on a crack cavalry charger. My mare came in
     with the first of them, and had more left in her at the end than
     either of the others.

     There is no greater mistake than to suppose that the function of
     the horse has vanished in modern war. On the contrary, even in
     the transport, horses are quite as much used as motors. Horse
     transport is not confined to roads, and can pass much more easily
     than motor vehicles over rough ground. When you get up near the
     front, where the roads are badly cut up, horse transport is not
     only desirable but essential. Of course, the motor is absolutely
     invaluable for speedy transport. But on the whole one can say
     that, except for motor-buses, which sometimes take the men right
     up close to the trenches, and except for the ammunition park--a
     collection of powerful and very speedy lorries loaded up with
     munitions, which has always to be in readiness to dash up to the
     front in view of an emergency--except in these cases, it is safe
     to say that motor transport ends some miles from the actual
     fighting-line, and all the remaining transport is horsed. True,
     motor-cars containing Generals on inspection, Supply officers,
     etc., go all over the place, often right up behind the
     firing-line. Also there are the motor machine-gun cars, and the
     armoured cars, which are fighting units proper. But don't for
     goodness' sake imagine that the horse is done with in modern war
     because of the advent of the motor.

     What the motor has done is to alter the whole face of things
     because of the extraordinary rapidity with which it enables you
     to fling troops or supplies up to the Front or transport them
     from point to point. But for the effective use of motor vehicles
     you need pretty good roads. You will remember how in the earlier
     months of the War, ourselves, the Germans and the French effected
     big troop movements simply by motor transport. You will recall
     the occasion on which the French flung a force across the suburbs
     of Paris and attacked the Boches on the right, thus beginning the
     movement known as the Battle of the Marne. Then there was the
     occasion when Hindenburg attacked the Russians in October, 1914,
     feinting at their left and striking at their right at Tannenberg
     with a force of armoured cars, cavalry, and infantry conveyed in
     motors. Neither of these movements could have been achieved
     before the advent of motor transport. As this war progresses, the
     need for really capable and cool-headed motor drivers will
     steadily increase. But it will be none the less invaluable to
     know how to manage a horse--whether to ride it, drive a wagon, or
     ride-and-drive in a limber. One of our limber horses is a grey
     captured from the Germans last year. He is a very good worker and
     doesn't seem to mind being a prisoner in the least.

     I must tell you of a funny incident. That night when we were
     sleeping on the heath, which I referred to in a previous letter
     (p. 149), our Medical Officer was awakened at 2 A.M. by a frantic
     signaller, that is, one of the R.E. motor-cycle dispatch riders.
     It was pouring rain at the time and bitterly cold. The signaller
     solemnly handed the M.O. an envelope marked "Urgent and Special."
     The M.O. opened it, his mind full of visions of men mortally
     stricken awaiting immediate attention and of other tragic things.
     Judge his astonishment when he found inside the following note
     from his O.C.: "Kindly render your monthly inoculation return to
     Headquarters before the end of the week." What the M.O. said is
     unprintable, as this return had already been sent in, and, in any
     case, is just a formality of no importance to anybody.

     My affection for the British soldier deepens the more I know of
     him. To a student of human nature it is an everlasting joy to get
     Tommy to tell you his experiences in his own inimitable language,
     interspersed with all sorts of gory adjectives. It is so
     different from and better than the sort of thing you read in the
     Society papers. Human nature as it really is comes out strongly
     in these splendid men at the Front. A talk with Tommy is of
     intense interest to a chap as keen as I am on psychology.


                                            _November 5th, 1915._

     Still much occupied; out almost all day and every day, either on
     horseback or in a motor. Much interest has been displayed in
     these parts in the visit of the King. I have passed the château
     where he is staying almost every day this past week.

     The district where we are now quartered is filled with refugees,
     among them some orphans from Loos. Some people about here have
     been terribly hit by the war, but some are reaping enormous
     profits out of it. Such is the caprice of fortune. All over this
     neighbourhood you see the names of Life Guards, Royal Horse
     Guards, Grenadiers, etc., carved on doors and panels. We are
     close to a large town which is an important point in the scheme
     of things.

     Events seem to be taking a remarkable turn. Who, at the start of
     the war, would have thought that we would have been able to land
     a military force in the Balkan Peninsula? It is really a
     remarkable position all round. Asquith's speech was frank if
     nothing else. There appears to have been discord in the Cabinet,
     so now we are about to have something like a "Committee of Public
     Safety." Marvellous race, the English! Lord Derby seems to be an
     outstanding personality just now. Have you noticed how each month
     of the war is marked by some new phase of public opinion?
     Optimism, pessimism, spies, Zeppelins, economy, pink forms,
     voluntaryism, conscription, munitions--each of these has been for
     a time the centre of public interest, and each has swiftly fallen
     from its pedestal to be replaced by some other phase. Curiously
     enough, the talk at home has not been influenced in any direct
     way by the real progress of the war, but by the effect on the
     popular imagination of trivial incidents, magnified out of all
     proportion by sensational journals. The war goes on,
     nevertheless, showing that the great British spirit is something
     far too strong and deep to be really influenced by the caprices
     of public opinion.

     It is amusing to see how the views of certain newspapers vary
     from month to month, and even more diverting to observe how all
     the amateur strategists claim that they had really predicted
     every phase of the military operations. Believe me, however, the
     war has been and is quite different from any ideas entertained in
     regard to it in the early weeks and months. It is a blend of
     grotesque incongruities that would be humorous were not one side
     of them so tragic and terrible. No one here seems to know
     anything definite about what is going on. One has considerable
     local knowledge but very little general information. Probably the
     latter is impossible to get in this sort of mix-up--the scale on
     which the war is being waged is so vast.

     You will see roughly from Sir John French's latest dispatch the
     part played by the cavalry in the advance of 25th September-5th
     October. You will not, of course, be able to glean much of what
     actually happened, but I can tell you we had a most interesting
     time.

     How tiresome is the tosh written in the papers and spoken in
     Parliament about the war! One wonders if it would not be a good
     plan to shut up Parliament for a time, though I suppose it is a
     good thing to have a place where men can vent their foolish
     thoughts. But I am thoroughly weary of "Statements by the Prime
     Minister" which state nothing, and of mere denunciations by Sir
     Arthur Markham and Sir Edward Carson; also of the shrieking of
     the Yellow Press, the wishy-washiness of the Liberal Press and
     the _Spectator_, the impenetrable Conservatism of the _Morning
     Post_, and the noisy sensationalism of the Bottomley--Austin
     Harrison crew. Thank goodness the strong broad stream of British
     spirit runs deeper and is much purer than would appear from this
     froth and scum on the surface.

     Recently it has been a period of Catholic festivals about here.
     Some days there have been processions and bell-ringing from morn
     to eve. The other day was the Fête des Morts, and lately there
     was the French All Saints' Day. It is a singular sensation to
     hear the chime of church bells blending with the thudding of the
     guns.


                                           _November 18th, 1915._

     Yesterday I rode twenty-five miles. A delightful experience it
     was, too;--in crisp winter weather and with the surrounding
     country covered with snow. It has become very cold of late, but I
     am fond of cold weather, especially when it keeps dry. Assigned
     some special work by the Staff Captain, I had permission to move
     when and how I liked, instead of accompanying the Column as I
     usually do. The result was that I was able to join up with the
     Veterinary section attached to the brigade. We moved at our own
     pace, resting our horses where we wanted to and giving them a
     good drink and feed _en route_, instead of jogging on
     monotonously with the Column. Our horses were thoroughly fit and
     full of life when we reached our destination, and good for
     another twenty-five miles if necessary. You would not believe how
     much horses benefit from care and attention as to food and rest.
     The time you lose in watering, resting and feeding, you can
     always more than make up through the consequent freshness of
     your animals. Obviously, when speed is absolutely vital, you
     can't choose your time to rest the horses. For example: on those
     never-to-be-forgotten days, 23-26 September last, we used to move
     at a rapid trot for hours on end--for the expectation then was
     that the Boche line might be broken. This latest "trek" had not
     the urgency or the wild excitement of that, and we were able to
     take our own time.

     I had a ripping game of Rugger a few days back, playing for the
     19th Hussars against the Bedford Yeomanry. The latter, who
     included some old Bedford School boys, beat us, though only by
     one point. I played forward in the first half of the game, and
     scrum-half in the second. It _was_ a treat to handle a Rugby ball
     again!

     Things are becoming rather mixed in English politics, what with
     Asquith's contradictory statements about conscription, Carson
     resigning and Winston flinging up politics for the Army. His
     resignation is creditable to Winston, and at a moment like this
     he would naturally want to do his bit at the Front. Everybody in
     the cavalry that I have spoken to considers him a good sportsman.
     Myself, I regard Churchill as a man with a real touch of genius.

     The Haldane controversy seems to have started afresh. How
     terrible is the ingratitude of the masses! If Haldane had done no
     more than create the Territorials and the Officers' Training
     Corps he would have had an everlasting claim to fame; but when
     one considers also his creation of the General Staff, and his
     arrangements for mobilising, equipping, transporting and
     supplying the B.E.F.--well, one begins to realise that the man is
     a Colossus. And yet the wretched Jingoes continue to bespatter
     him with mud, and I suppose the nation in the mass regards him as
     a species of highly-educated spy! But perhaps the majority of
     the people have never heard of him--Charlie Chaplin is a far more
     living personality to most of them, I make no doubt.

     I referred in a recent letter (p. 162), to the fluctuating phases
     of opinion in England in regard to the war. A new phase would
     appear now to have arisen and taken the place of the Lord Derby
     boom. This new phase is one of criticism of past military and
     naval operations--Neuve Chapelle, Loos, Suvla Bay, the Narrows,
     Antwerp, etc. etc., all of which are being discussed with equal
     zest and ignorance. Mark my words, there will soon be a new phase
     or an old one will recur.


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                           _November 23rd, 1915._

     I am so sorry Dulwich got done down by Bedford. Of all our
     matches, that is the one we are most keen on winning. Still, we
     can't expect to win always, and we have not lost to Bedford for
     three years till now. I had perhaps the unique experience of
     being in a team which never lost a Bedford match. In 1912-13,
     when I got my colours, we drew 28 points all; in 1913-14 we won,
     16 to 15; and last year, 32 to 16. Well, I would have given
     anything for the School to have got home a fourth time against
     old Bedford, but it was not to be.

     The sudden drop in temperature during the last fortnight has
     affected most people here. I have escaped without any sort of
     cold, though nine-tenths of the officers and men have been down
     with chills.

     My mare has developed a devil of a temper of late, and bites and
     kicks like anything--a sign of exuberant vigour. Fortunately she
     gets on well with my other horse, and they don't "strafe" each
     other in the stable. To get horses in the same stable on good
     terms with each other is largely a question of feeding them at
     the same time. My second horse, which my servant rides when we
     are on the move, is a jolly little chestnut, very strong and
     hardy, with a magnificent long tail. I ride him and the mare on
     alternate days. Horses are ridiculous creatures. They will eat
     all sorts of things, even wood, mud, and pieces of coal, as if
     from sheer cussedness. It can't be because they are hungry, as
     they get plenty to eat in the way of oats, hay, dry clover, etc.
     Sometimes, as if from devilment, they will roll in the mud a few
     minutes after they have been nicely groomed. Some of our
     regiments have a lot of mules, which are given to fearful
     brayings--a sound which is a cross between a horse's whinny, a
     donkey's hee-haw and an elephant's trumpeting. Mules bite and
     kick each other continually, but they will do any amount of work
     when so inclined.


                                           _November 29th, 1915._

     I see that the Welshmen are coming out. May they strafe the
     Boches to the wide! I hope the Cymry will prove themselves worthy
     successors to Owain Glyndwr and all the other grand old chiefs
     who have given us such a name in arms. Times have changed, and
     to-day, instead of smiting your foe with a club or a sword, you
     "strafe" him with gas-shells and machine-guns. The old way was
     the best, but the natural instinct of all things animate to fight
     remains, as it always will remain.

     We have received some of _The Times'_ broad-sheets. I don't
     exactly know whether they are good or not. It is undoubtedly a
     benefit to have "bits" from great writers to skim over when you
     haven't the time, or the inclination, to wade through a volume.
     On the other hand, it is intensely aggravating to experience the
     feeling of incompleteness that naturally results from having your
     reading suddenly cut off.


                                            _December 3rd, 1915._

     The other day I was ordered to visit a certain battery in the
     firing-line. No one had a ghost of an idea as to their present
     location, but I discovered where their supplies were being drawn
     from--a spot two miles from the line, which was being "strafed"
     daily. Off I went to this place in my car, but nobody there knew
     a thing about the people I wanted, so I had to go up to the
     railway station and crave the loan of a telephone. After a great
     deal of bother I got on to some genial soul who knew where the
     Brigade Headquarters were of the lot I was after. He told me
     where they had gone to, but whether they were still there or not
     he didn't know. Anyhow, it was a clue. So, like Pillingshot (in
     P. G.'s story), I worked on it.

     After consulting my maps, and chatting with dozens of military
     police, interpreters, etc., I took my car forward by a certain
     road. By this time it was pitch dark, except for star shells and
     gun flashes. The road was crammed with traffic. We took a wrong
     turning, and eventually found ourselves on an apology for a road
     that ended in a swamp full of shell-holes, and had to retrace our
     steps gingerly. After blundering about in the dark for some time
     we struck the village we were looking for, a hopeless sort of
     place crammed with Scotsmen, all exceedingly grimy, but gay and
     cheerful. In one house the men were waltzing to the strains of a
     mouth-organ, though the boom of the guns was shaking the house
     every second or so.

     Having reached the Headquarters I was in quest of, I ascertained
     from them that the battery with which I had business to do was
     now at a spot two miles away down a main road which was the scene
     of such desperate fighting not long back. The O.C. strongly
     advised me not to take the car down there, as if I did "it was
     likely that the car would stop some pieces of metal." There was
     nothing for it but to walk down the road leading to the recently
     captured village. It was very dark, but star-shells, with their
     weird green light, would illuminate the countryside every five
     minutes or so. In the darkness one could vaguely discern the
     shape of the first-line transport wagons taking up rations to the
     trenches, and small columns of silently marching men, and now and
     then a motor lorry belonging to some ammunition park. Presently,
     after what seemed an interminable walk, I found the battery, who
     themselves had only just arrived, and executed my job in a
     half-ruined house. To get back to my car I borrowed a horse and
     rode part of the way with a number of led horses, which, having
     brought up the guns, were going back to the wagon line.

     On getting to my car I decided that my best road to return would
     be to go straight along into a certain large town, instead of the
     route we'd come by. As we spun along a voice from the darkness
     hailed us: "Have you room for an officer?" We at once pulled up
     and told him to jump in. Poor devil! he was almost in a state of
     collapse and talked wildly. He had been six months in the
     trenches, and had just come out of them in a half-hysterical
     state. I had to speak to him pretty firmly before he could pull
     himself together. We took him to his destination, and he was most
     grateful for the lift.

     It was an uncanny experience, this wandering about in the
     darkness in desolate regions a few hundred yards from the
     trenches. In this grim struggle there is none of the glory and
     pomp of war as exhibited in the days of old, when rival armies
     met amid the blare of trumpets and the waving of standards. The
     pageantry of war is gone. We have now war in all its fierceness,
     grime and cold-bloodedness without any picturesque glamour or
     romance. Can you wonder that in such conditions civilised human
     nature out here swiftly changes and is replaced by elemental
     savagery?

In December, 1915, Paul Jones had short leave, and spent six days at
home. He took advantage of the opportunity to have a game of football
on the familiar arena in Dulwich, playing for the Old Alleynians
against the College 1st XV.

                                           _December 21st, 1915._

     All well after a pleasant crossing. The blundering authorities
     kept us and three other leave trains six hours in ---- station,
     no one being allowed to leave the platform! We eventually reached
     ---- at 7 P.M. The two first men I met on the boat were old
     Dulwich boys, W. J. Barnard and Bobby Dicke. Barnard is a
     field-gunner, and Dicke is in the 1st Royal Fusiliers. I also met
     another O.A., named Corsan, who is captain in Barnard's battery.
     How well I remember ragging with him in choir practices! We had a
     thrilling chat over old times. Both Barnard and Corsan went
     through the Battle of Loos. On reaching France we found there was
     no means of getting to our respective destinations until next
     morning, so we all dined together with a couple of other subs.,
     one in the K.R.R.s, a mere boy in appearance but a veteran in
     experience. How delightful to meet old pals, and what splendid
     fellows these old public-school men are!

     Everything is very festive about here just now. Officers and men
     are making ready to pass Christmas in the old-fashioned way.


                                           _December 28th, 1915._

     We had a very jolly Christmas. The revellings have, in fact, only
     just begun to subside. Our Brigade Major spent his Christmas in
     the trenches along with his brother, a V.C. In that part of the
     line there was a truce for a quarter of an hour on Christmas Day,
     and a number of Englishmen and Germans jumped out and started
     talking together. A German gave one of our men a Christmas tree
     about two feet high as a souvenir. It is of the usual variety,
     covered with tinsel and adorned with glass balls.


                                             _January 4th, 1916._

     I was indescribably grieved to read of the death of
     Nightingale.[5] Himself an O.A., he was in the Modern Sixth about
     1900. He was a master at the dear old school from 1907, or
     thereabouts. I regarded him as one of my best friends among the
     masters. The year I took on the captaincy of the Junior School
     "footer," he gave me immense help as master in charge of the
     Junior School games. But really cricket was his game; he was a
     splendid bat on his day, a useful slow bowler and a fine
     fieldsman. He was such an enthusiast for cricket that he would
     take any and every chance of playing, no matter whether against
     the 1st XI or against the Junior School. In character he was
     extremely simple and unaffected--not a great scholar, but a
     shrewd thinker with a serviceable knowledge of history and
     literature, and a fine taste in reading. Personally he was one of
     the kindest of men and so easy to get on with. Though in no sense
     a professional soldier, yet from a strong feeling of duty he
     joined right at the start as a private in, I believe, the Rifle
     Brigade, with whom he served many months in France. He then got a
     commission in the 7th Lincolns, with whom he was serving when
     killed.

         [Footnote 5: Lieutenant F. L. Nightingale. Born, 1881. Killed
         in action in France, December 19th, 1915. A master at
         Dulwich, 1906-1914. A man of ripe culture and a splendid
         cricketer.]

     Here was a man who threw up all to take up soldiering, not
     because he had the military instinct, but from sheer patriotism
     and sense of duty. It was just like him--at school he would
     always put himself out to play in a game if a team was a man
     short. He was always called "Nighty" by the boys. Can you wonder,
     with the example of such a man before me, that I should be
     longing to get into the Infantry? Heavens! A man would not be a
     man who did not feel as I feel about this matter.

     Well, Sir John Simon has resigned. Rather a pity that such a
     career should be cut short. Still, at best he was a mere
     politician, and to tell you the truth I don't like politicians
     much. All the same, I do think Simon did some valuable work as
     Home Secretary, and earlier as Attorney-General.

     For once the British Government appears to have acted with
     vigour--I mean by occupying Salonika and telling the Greeks
     politely to "hop it." Result, the Greeks have hopped it. How much
     more simple and effective this than to jaw about "the rights of
     neutrals," the "sanctity of small nations," etc., etc.! No! take
     a strong line in this world, and you're more likely to get what
     you want than by cajolery.


                                            _January 26th, 1916._

     One day last week I mounted my horse at 2.15 P.M. and rode in a
     south-easterly direction. For the first couple of miles things
     were as usual--crowds of soldiers about, of course, and lots of
     transport on the move. One village I found populated half by
     civilians and half by troops. Thereafter the country becomes
     barer and grimmer, and the fields for the most part are
     uncultivated--in itself a remarkable thing in France. The next
     village I came to bore signs of having been shelled, but was
     still habitable. Originally it must have been quite a pleasant
     little place. Not many of the native inhabitants remained, and
     the houses for the most part were filled with Scotsmen and
     sappers.

     Passing on, with the roar of the guns getting more and more
     distinct, we come to a place that leaves no manner of doubt that
     there is a war on. There are graves by the roadside, and
     shell-holes. Lines of trenches and coils of barbed wire arrest
     your attention. Now there comes into view the battered remnant of
     what was once a busy mining village. The great slag-heap towers
     up on our right hand, its sides scarred and smashed by
     shell-fire. Not a house is left standing. There are only
     shattered walls and heaps of bricks. Over all hangs that curious
     odour one gets at the Front--a sort of combined smell of burning
     and decay. A grotesque effect is produced by a signboard hanging
     outside a ruined tenement and bearing the words: "Delattre,
     Débitant," or, in other words, "Delattre's Inn." On the right a
     gunner is standing on what was once a house roof, hacking away at
     the beams with a pickaxe; he is getting firewood, no doubt.
     Solemnly a general service wagon rolls by, carrying a load of
     fuel, and a limber crashes past at a trot. A little single-line
     railway from the colliery crosses the road, and even now there
     are standing on it two or three trucks, strange to say quite
     intact. The machinery at the pit-head is all smashed, bent and
     broken. You are impressed with the strange, eerie silence, when
     suddenly there is an earth-shaking crash. One of our heavies has
     been fired. You hear the shell whirring away on its journey of
     destruction, and finally a faint, far-distant crash, perhaps
     marking the end of a dozen men, five or ten miles off.

     Resuming my journey I reached another village, where the
     destruction had been simply terrible, surpassing even that of
     Ypres. This village bears a name famous in the annals of British
     arms, for it was from here that the Guards charged on that
     memorable day, September 25th. I saw a line of old trenches just
     behind the village, and rode over to examine them. Perhaps it was
     from this very line that our men advanced. I tried to picture to
     myself what it must have been like--valour, endurance, turmoil,
     destruction, death, a great forward rush by brave men that spent
     itself, and fizzled out just on the eve of triumph. Why?

     On the left there was a large cemetery. Many of the crosses had
     soldiers' caps hung on them, and in one case the man was
     evidently a Catholic, for crucifix and image had been taken down
     from a post on the roadside and laid on the grave. I tried to
     find if there was any trace of the names of two O.A.s who fell in
     this battle, Crabbe and Beer, but failed to discover either name.

     It was now getting late, so I retraced my steps and cantered
     homewards. In this war-scarred region I actually met an old
     French farmer driving his horse and trap along the road leading
     towards the trenches just as if there was no war raging; and near
     the one habitable house of the district small boys were playing
     merrily, while their parents were calling them in and scolding
     them in shrill voices. In some ruined houses were yet more
     Scotsmen, most ubiquitous of peoples. I halted to chat with an
     old military policeman who used to be with the 9th Cavalry
     Brigade. Then home. A very interesting afternoon's work, which
     gave one a real insight into "the conduct and results of war" as
     waged in these cynical days.

     During another visit I paid to this desolate region there was a
     "strafe" of some magnitude on. As I rode I could hear the long
     whistling and heavy crump of high explosives that the enemy were
     dropping into a village about a mile to the left, and could see
     the flame and smoke of the explosion. Our own guns soon began to
     chime in. It was quite a cheerful little show, what with the
     long-drawn whining of approaching Boche shells, the crash of
     explosions, the thud of our guns replying, and the weird,
     fluttering noise of our shells going over. Presently the gun duel
     became more and more violent. The fearful crashes of our
     "heavies," the groans, shrieks and whines of the shells on their
     message of death, the tremendous thuds of Boche explosions, and
     the whistling hum of shrapnel pieces flying around--all this made
     up a pandemonium of noise. My further progress along this road
     was barred by a thud amongst some ruined houses about a hundred
     yards in front of me, showing that the "strafe" was veering round
     to my direction. Deviating from this road I met some old
     acquaintances in the Gunners, and had tea with them in their
     dug-out, my horse being put up in what in pre-war days had been
     somebody's sitting-room. I cantered home at dusk. All this
     evening there has been a "hate" on--the sky alive with
     gun-flashes and lit up by star-shells, and the air resounding
     with bangings and thuddings.


                                            _February 1st, 1916._

     Hereabouts we seem now to be doing ten times as much "strafing"
     as the Boches. This afternoon I saw at fifty yards' distance some
     60-pounders (the old "Long-Toms") being fired. First, there would
     come a flash of flame from the muzzle, followed by an
     ear-splitting bang. Then the whole gun seemed to hurl itself
     bodily forward and slide back into position again. Meanwhile you
     could hear the shell tearing its way through the air with the
     curious shuddering, or fluttering, noise that shells make in
     transit.

     Riding north the other day I came to a place where the only
     sounds that could be heard were the intermittent crackle of
     rifle-fire mingling with the shrill tones of a woman haggling
     over the price of bread with an old chap who had driven out with
     his pony and cart from an adjacent town to sell his goods. The
     roof of the woman's house had mostly vanished and some of the
     walls were non-existent, being replaced by sandbags. A notice
     proclaimed that there was coffee and milk for sale within. Is it
     not extraordinary to encounter this sort of thing right up in the
     battle zone? It shows how human nature can adapt itself to the
     most uncustomary things. I suppose we should be the same--stick
     to the old home so long as there was a brick left standing.

     I ran across an O.A., named Tatnell, who holds a commission in
     the Motor Machine Gun Corps. He told me he had met lots of O.A.s
     out here. Some of the fellows he mentioned are mere boys of
     seventeen and eighteen still. One of them, Williams, I remember
     last year as a drummer in the Corps. Honestly, the old school has
     done splendidly. Every one of the fellows I used to know from the
     age of seventeen onwards is serving, and they were all serving
     long before there was any talk of Derby schemes.


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                           _February 10th, 1916._

     I went into the trenches a few days back--not in the front line,
     but as far as Brigade Headquarters, which is a sort of series of
     caverns in the ground, and is approached by a long communication
     trench. Nothing much was happening; and, anyway, this particular
     trench is so deep that there is nothing to be seen save a strip
     of sky above your head. In a few places you can get out and stand
     on the open ground without much danger. The spectacle is
     curious--practically nothing visible to indicate that there is a
     war on. No soldiers in sight, only a lot of shell-holes and
     barbed wire, and a general sense of desolation, with an
     occasional crack of a rifle bullet, the whistle and crash of
     Boche shells and the bang of our own guns from just behind.

     I suppose that the Army class at Dulwich are hot favourites this
     year for the Form Cup, and the Engineers for the Side. Our star
     on the Modern Side has, I fear, waned. I shall never forget that
     final Side match last year, when, with a team much the weaker on
     paper, we (the Modern Side, captained by Paul Jones) snatched a
     victory by sheer tactics. It was the best game, or rather, one of
     the four best games, I remember--the other three being the
     Bedford match in 1913, when A. H. Gilligan shone so brilliantly;
     the famous 28-28 draw at Bedford in 1912; and the Haileybury
     match of the same year. In every one of these games the football
     reached a high standard, and the result was a pretty fair
     indication of the run of the play, except perhaps in the second
     game, in which it was the personal brilliance of the Gilligans
     and Evans that snatched an almost lost game out of the fire.
     Great Scott! What wouldn't I give to be starting my school career
     again? Make the most of your school days, my son, for you'll
     never have such a time again!


                                               _March 2nd, 1916._

     A few days ago I went up to see Elias--Captain T. Elias,
     son-in-law of Dr. MacNamara, M.P.--and had tea with "C" Company,
     1st London Welsh. To my amazement I discovered that Percy
     Davies--now Major Davies, son of Mr. David Davies, Mayor of
     Swansea, 1917, and editor of the _South Wales Daily Post_--was in
     the same village at the time. So I went along to his mess; we
     were overjoyed to meet one another. He introduced me to his
     messmates, a ripping set of chaps, who included Sir Alfred Mond's
     son, and one Parry, whose brother played for Dulwich, inside to
     Harold Gilligan, in Evans's year. Amazing coincidences, what? At
     the invitation of these fellows I went with them to a concert
     they had got up in the village. It was quite the best show of its
     kind I have seen out here, and there are lots of concert-parties
     in these parts. The Welsh have a gift of music that is peculiar
     to them alone. There was some first-rate singing at the concert;
     and a private soldier--a Tommy, mark you!--played Liszt's "No. 2
     Rhapsody" and Schubert's "Marche Militaire" almost flawlessly.
     And the way the audience appreciated it! Then we had some
     first-rate comic work--really refined, not cheap and coarse--by a
     man whom I am sure I've seen at Llandrindod. Altogether it was a
     first-rate show--by miles the most interesting, intellectual,
     refined and capable performance I've seen out here.

     They have shows of various kinds every night of the week--boxing
     contests, trials by jury, concerts, etc. What enterprise and
     intelligence our countrymen have! Percy Davies himself looks
     after the boxing, and he made quite a telling little speech in
     announcing his plans for the coming week. Mond is a good chap,
     very jovial, boyish and unsophisticated. In fact, all these
     fellows are of the very best, and of outstanding intelligence.
     Would that I were with them! I was struck by the remarkable
     difference between these officers and the cavalry officers with
     whom I am in daily association. Each type is wholly admirable in
     its own way, but they have not many characteristics in common.


                                              _April 14th, 1916._

     I derive great pleasure and interest from watching the methods of
     these French peasants with their horses. It is nothing short of
     marvellous. They never groom their horses and never clean the
     harness or bits, yet the horses keep fit as fiddles and look
     really well too. Their intelligence is extraordinary. Almost
     every night I see the old chap, at whose farm I keep my own
     horses, come in with four or five horses from ploughing--riding
     on one, not in the orthodox fashion, _i.e._, astride, but with
     both legs hanging over the horse's near side, something like
     ladies' style of riding, but without saddle, braces, or stirrups.
     He is leading no fewer than four other horses on one rein--a
     remarkable thing in itself. When he gets into his farmyard he
     slides off and gives some sort of a weird shout that sounds like
     "Ooee-ee-ee!" The moment the horses hear this off they go to the
     pond in one corner of the yard and drink their fill.

     Meanwhile the farmer has gone into his house. Presently he
     reappears at the door and utters something like "Oy-eh!" He may
     be fifty yards from his horses and never goes near them, but as
     soon as they hear this call they leave the pond and troop off
     into their stable, where each horse takes up his own place and
     stands still there ready to be tethered. They all know exactly
     where to stand, and the old chap unharnesses them, hangs up the
     harness for use next day, chucks a few handfuls of oats into the
     manger, shoves some hay into the rack, and leaves them for the
     night. He never troubles about drying their legs and hoofs after
     their immersion in the pond. Probably if you treated one of our
     horses in that fashion he would be likely to get a "cracked heel"
     and go lame. But these French farm horses never seem to mind in
     the least. Well, one lives and learns. Our grooms are vastly
     amused at these methods of horse-managing. The baffling thing is
     the wonderful health enjoyed by the French horses. It is very
     rare for any of them to go lame or sick, or even lose condition
     despite their--to us--extraordinary _mode de vivre_.


                                              _April 27th, 1916._

     I see that poor Kitter[6] has been killed. It is too horrible;
     first Nightingale, now Kittermaster. At Dulwich Kitter was always
     looked upon as a prototype of K. of K. He was a very silent man,
     who nevertheless took a very real interest in the affairs of the
     school, his form, and his "House." He knew a lot about military
     tactics, and his chief hobby was the Corps, for which he worked
     and slaved in school-time and out. He taught us fellows more
     about military discipline and training than you could get from
     months of study. He was always having little field-days, extra
     drills, and so forth, and while any movements were on he was
     always explaining and talking to you, showing why this, and why
     that, and so forth. He had a fund of dry humour. One of the best
     men at Dulwich, I always thought! Poor chap! Well, well!

         [Footnote 6: Captain Arthur N. C. Kittermaster. Born, 1871.
         Killed in action in Mesopotamia, April 5th, 1916. A master at
         Dulwich, 1896-1915. An accomplished scholar and athlete, who
         was C.O. of the Dulwich O.T.C.]

In May, 1916, Paul came home on leave. He spent a very enjoyable week
in London and had the satisfaction of meeting many old College
friends. On 12th May I saw him off by the 8.10 A.M. train from
Victoria. There is a clear picture of him in my mind's eye standing on
the platform before taking his seat in the waiting train, cheerily
greeting this friend and that, conspicuous in the throng of officers
by his massive physique. He looked the incarnation of young manly
vigour, courage and hope, and there was about him a fresh and
fragrant air like the atmosphere of that delicious spring morning. The
future is mercifully veiled from man. Little did either of us think
when saying farewell, clasping hands and gazing lovingly into each
other's eyes, that we would never meet again on this earth.

                                                _May 15th, 1916._

     Had a pleasant crossing to France. I dined in an hotel with a
     gunner lieutenant, who in civil life was a Professor of
     Literature, a charming and cultured man. We discussed some of our
     respective pet theories on Art and Life, the Novel and the Drama,
     etc., and found many points of agreement.

     Well! it was a great leave. There is no countryside to compare
     with the English. If you had lived among the flats of Flanders
     you would find the tamest English scenery beautiful. Not that we
     are situated at present in unbeautiful surroundings. In fact, the
     downs about here are very pleasant, and there are many trees in
     the valleys; but give me the English countryside. Then there is
     London! Dear old London! to me the one town in the world. Our own
     home, too, with its happy blend of urban and rural. And then the
     old school----! Yes, it was a great leave, there can be no
     possible doubt about it. Would that it had been twice as long!

     On arrival at our quarters I found my horses very well. They are
     looking perfectly beautiful just now, their coats shining, smooth
     and glossy like silk. My big one really blazes on a sunny day,
     and my cob is not far behind him. I shall have a very busy time
     in the next ten days, arranging for a supply of about 30 tons a
     week of green fodder to be purchased in weekly instalments in the
     neighbouring countryside. All the troops are going to bivouac in
     the fields shortly, as they always do this time of the year,
     remaining under canvas until September, or even October if the
     weather permits.


                                                _May 18th, 1916._

     Thanks so much for the "Shakespeare"; it was exactly what I
     wanted. I am making a careful study of the Bard's works again,
     and with an enthusiasm that has not one whit abated; rather it
     has augmented. I only wish it had been possible to see some of
     his plays whilst on leave.

     What a superman Shakespeare was! The interest of his plays is
     absolutely perennial. Perhaps the most extraordinary feature of
     his work is the astonishing consistency of the characters in his
     _dramatis personæ_. His characters invariably behave exactly as
     people of that type would and do behave in real life. Thus we
     have the illusion that the characters conceived by his mighty
     imagination are themselves real. He has hit with marvellous
     accuracy on the points in human nature that are common to almost
     all ages, and, _mutatis mutandis_, his plays could be staged in
     the nineteenth or twentieth century without losing any of their
     power.

     Men of the type of Hamlet are doubtless rare, yet we all know the
     sort of genius who is so much a genius that he is incapable of
     action and does nothing but reflect. Hamlet seems meant to show
     how vain it is to be merely a philosopher in this world. Hamlet
     is always pondering, thinking of the abstract rights and wrongs
     of the case. In the result, though he does eventually avenge his
     father's murder, his introspection and vacillation have led to
     the death of himself and no fewer than three other innocent
     persons--Ophelia, Polonius and Laertes. Yet Hamlet was at least
     twice as brainy as the rest of them, and he was also a good
     sportsman; for instance, he refuses to kill Claudius when he
     finds him at a disadvantage--that is, when Claudius is praying.

     To me the lesson of the play seems to be this--the only policy
     that really works in this world is to "go in and get the goods,"
     as the Canadians say. The philosopher usually causes more trouble
     than his philosophy is worth. It is the old lesson of the
     Girondins and Jacobins over again. No one doubts which of them
     had the purer and loftier ideals. Equally no one doubts that the
     Girondins, despite all this, were hopelessly outmanoeuvred by the
     practical Jacobins, who had not a tithe of their brains.

     To change the subject, I have been getting a lot of swimming
     lately. At a big cement works in a neighbouring town there is an
     enormous pond in a quarry. The water is about 15 feet deep all
     round and not at all stagnant, and there is a splendid place for
     diving. Yesterday I was down at a neighbouring seaport on
     business and got a delightful swim in the sea. A swim means to me
     almost as much as a Rugby match. I am going down to the
     cement-works pool every day, and whenever possible I shall have a
     swim in the sea. The weather just at present is wonderful, the
     sunshine simply glorious. Do not imagine that I am neglecting my
     work. In fact, I have been tremendously busy buying and arranging
     for green fodder for about 2,000 horses at the rate of 4 lbs. per
     horse per diem. By to-morrow noon I shall have contracts
     concluded to keep the brigade supplied until further orders.


                                                _May 21st, 1916._

     Thanks so much for congratulatory messages. It certainly was
     gratifying to get the second pip, and a particularly pleasant
     coincidence that it should be gazetted on May 18th [his
     birthday].

     The weather in "this pleasant land of France" remains wonderful.
     The sun is really shining. In the height of summer I have never
     known more beautiful weather. This, on the whole, is a
     picturesque part of France, and everything looks at its best just
     now. The lanes and wooded downs here might be in Surrey.

     I was seven hours in the saddle yesterday. The General himself
     commented the other day on the splendid condition of my horses.
     They certainly are looking extraordinarily well.


                                                _May 28th, 1916._

     I note that Winston Churchill suggested in the House of Commons
     the other day that the Cavalry should be turned into Infantry.
     With due respect to him, I think that he is all wrong. Whenever
     the "Push" comes, cavalry will be not only desirable, but
     absolutely and vitally essential. The day of cavalry charges may
     have gone, but I agree with Conan Doyle that "the time will never
     come when a brave and a capable man who is mounted will be
     useless to his comrades." You might, indeed, mount them in motor
     cars, but a man with a horse has three times the freedom and the
     scope for scouting and independent action that a man has who is
     brought up in a motor and then dumped to shift for himself. I
     entirely agree with Churchill, nevertheless, about the large
     number of able-bodied men employed behind the fighting-lines. I
     only wish I were in the trenches myself, I can tell you. My
     rejection for the Infantry was a bitter blow!

     Everybody here is grieved at the death in action of Captain
     Platt, ---- Hussars, attached Coldstream Guards. I knew him quite
     well, and we were great friends. He was a chivalrous gentleman,
     and very clever intellectually, quite a bit of a poet in his way.


                                                _June 2nd, 1916._

     We are now in bivouacs in a big field. I have rigged up a
     first-rate tent, made out of cart-cover, with a sort of enclosed
     dressing-room for washing, etc., attached. We've got a fine
     mess-tent, 30 feet long by 20 feet wide, made out of
     wagon-sheetings. It is not only much more pleasant, but a good
     deal cheaper, to live in the open like this.

     So Churchill has once again leapt to the fore as a critic of the
     Army. Mind, I have a lot of sympathy with some of his arguments,
     but in general this last speech seemed to me mere wild and
     whirling words. I note that L. G. now appears in the rôle of
     Conciliator-in-General to Ireland. If anyone can settle this
     miserable Irish question, he will.

     The war drags wearily along on its monotonous course. Are you
     reading Conan Doyle's review in the _Strand_ of the early stages
     of the war? The style is not so good as John Buchan's, and
     perhaps he is inclined to miss the broad issues of the conflict.
     But for details, and for pictures of incidents that go to make up
     war, Conan Doyle's narrative is very good indeed. The story of
     the heroic fight of "L" Battery R.H.A. at Le Cateau, when the
     whole battery was wiped out save for an odd man or two, is
     admirably told. War was war in those days, not like this
     earthworm war that has replaced it. Still, no doubt the trench
     phase will not last for ever.


                                                _June 9th, 1916._

     The school cricket XI seems to have been doing badly. It was
     undoubtedly hard lines to go under by only four runs to Bedford,
     but our bad season is only a tribute to the patriotism of the
     school, for I can see from the names of the eleven that we have
     no one playing over the age of 17. Our system of training the
     young idea in cricket is very much inferior to the training for
     footer. The consequence is that in Dulwich cricket a young team
     is probably destined for disaster, whereas I know from experience
     that whenever we've had a young footer team it has had quite as
     much success as teams exclusively composed of fellows in their
     last year at school.

     To speak of bigger matters, it seems to me impossible as yet to
     put together any connected story of the Battle of Jutland. The
     only facts that seem certain are that both sides lost heavily
     (the Boches worse than ours, I expect), and that British
     superiority on the seas, and consequently the maintenance of the
     blockade, remains _in statu quo antea_. I am quite prepared to
     find, when the true facts come out, that it was a deathless story
     of heroism on the British part, and that in a fight with a foe
     about six times his strength Beatty covered himself with glory.

     Lord Kitchener's death was terribly tragic. There ought to be
     stringent inquiries as to the ways and means by which the Boches
     were enabled to sink H.M.S. _Hampshire_. On the other hand, I can
     see that it is possible that the whole thing was a woefully
     unfortunate accident. To have one's name coupled with
     "Kitchener's Army"--a title alone which should pass K.'s name
     down to posterity--is no small honour.


WITH A SUPPLY COLUMN

In June Lieut. Paul Jones, much to his chagrin, was transferred from
the 9th Cavalry Brigade to the Divisional Supply Column. His letters
will show how much he resented this change. (Certain words and
figures omitted from the following letter are the result of excisions
made by the Press Bureau censorship. They do not appear to have been
made on any intelligible principle.)

                                               _June 12th, 1916._

     I have been transferred from my old post of Requisitioning
     Officer to Supply Officer, Cavalry Division Supply Column. I am
     frankly and absolutely fed-up with this change! They tell me it
     is promotion. Well, as I told my colonel, promotion of that kind
     was not what I wanted. I loved my old job with its facilities for
     exercising my French, and its comparative variety. Now I am
     dignified with a job whose main element is seeing to the rations
     being loaded on to the motor lorries that feed the division. I
     have not even a chance of exercising my special faculty--that of
     speaking French. I told my colonel I didn't want the job and
     beseeched him to leave me with my brigade. He was adamant. My
     late General wrote a personal letter to the A.S.C. colonel,
     urging in the strongest terms that I should be left with the
     brigade. Even to his appeal the only answer vouchsafed was: "The
     change is equivalent to a promotion for the officer," and it is
     "necessary for the satisfactory rationing of the division." The
     colonel told me he was moving me (1) because I was good at
     figures--me!; (2) because I was hard-working. They don't seem to
     realise that, if what they said was true, I would have been a far
     greater asset as a Requisitioning Officer. Oh, it does drive me
     wild!

     We had a brilliantly successful Divisional Horse Show last
     Saturday. It proved a real triumph for the ---- Hussars of our
     brigade--to my mind the best cavalry regiment in the Army. They
     romped home easy firsts for the cup presented by the G.O.C. to
     the regiment that got the greatest number of points in the
     competitions. The classes for heavy and light chargers brought
     out some magnificent horses. The well-known C.O. of the ----
     Hussars was very much in evidence in all these classes. He is a
     striking personality. With his hard, shrewd, red face, his
     wonderfully thin legs, light-coloured breeches, beautifully-cut
     tunic and high hat cocked over his left ear, he looked the
     personification of the cavalry officer as we read about him in
     novels. It would seem as though these cavalry officers had been
     fashioned by nature to sit on a horse. I suppose it is heredity.
     Certainly they are all of a type.

     An interesting unofficial incident was provided by a man in the
     4th Dragoon Guards producing a fine bay horse which he wagered 30
     to 1 against any officer riding. It was a real American
     buck-jumper. This challenge was enough for the dare-devil
     subalterns of the ---- Hussars, and one of them, Beach-Hay, a
     splendid horseman, promptly closed with the offer. For twenty
     minutes or so he tried to mount, without succeeding; finally he
     muffled the horse's head in a cloak and got on his back. Then he
     dug his spurs in and set off at a gallop over the wide plain
     where the show was being held. All went well for some time until
     suddenly, without any warning, the horse put his feet together,
     arched his back, and leapt several feet into the air, at the same
     time turning to the left sharply. This the horse repeated several
     times, up hill, down hill, sideways. How Beach-Hay managed to
     keep his seat no one could tell; it was marvellous the way he
     stuck on. At last the spirited animal contrived to get the rider
     well forward on his neck, and then Hay slipped off and the horse
     was away over the plain at full gallop, riderless. He was chased
     and caught at last after a long run. Then up stepped a wily old
     trooper of the 5th Dragoon Guards who used to be a jockey. He saw
     that the horse was now tired out and got on his back without
     difficulty, and as the animal by this time was utterly fagged, he
     found little trouble in keeping his seat. All the honours,
     however, belonged to the young subaltern.

     Did you see that wonderful record of R. B. B. Jones[7] of
     Dulwich? He shot no fewer than fifteen Boches in a scrap in the
     craters on the Vimy Ridge before himself being killed. I remember
     him more than well--a short, sturdy fellow, a very good shot, and
     an excellent diver and gymnast. He did not go in much for cricket
     or for football. Poor chap! Yet such a death, I think, is far
     more to be coveted than an ignoble life far from danger and risk.
     I often think of those lines of Adam Lindsay Gordon:

       No game was ever yet worth a rap for a rational man to play,
       Into which no accident, no mishap, could possibly find its way.

         [Footnote 7: R. B. B. Jones. Born, 1897. Killed, May 21st,
         1916. In the shooting VII, 1913-14; captain of gymnasium,
         1914. Lieutenant, Loyal North Lancashires. His heroic bravery
         on the Vimy Ridge recognised by bestowal of a posthumous
         V.C.]


                                               _June 16th, 1916._

     I have had another fit of the blues over this wretched transfer.
     Why should it be given to all the fellows I know to be in the
     thick of real fighting--a life which anyone should be proud to
     live--while to me, aged twenty, standing six feet, about forty
     inches round the chest, Rugby footballer, swimmer, fluent French
     speaker, and Balliol scholar, it is given to load up rations?
     Loathing this Supply work, I have already applied for a transfer
     to the Horse Transport Section. Oh! that I had only obeyed the
     dictates of my own conscience and enlisted in the H.A.C. at the
     start of the war, instead of staying on at school to get a
     paltry scholarship which the odds are 10 to 1 on my never being
     able to use! What I pray for is a job in which the following
     elements are constantly present: (1) hard work; (2) real brain
     work, employing, if possible, my knowledge of languages; (3)
     constant danger, or, at least, the constant chance of it; (4) if
     possible, horses to ride. For such a job I would willingly give
     ten years of my life.


                                               _June 22nd, 1916._

     I am glad to say that I'm not finding my new job so absolutely
     hopeless as I expected. It is in many ways not at all
     uninteresting to be attached to a Supply Column. After a long
     time with men whose one interest in life is horses, I now find
     myself with men who eat, drink, live and breathe motors. My
     experience has already taught me that England has a splendid
     system of mechanical transport. Our column numbers no fewer than
     150 lorries, 6 motor-cars, and 20 motor-bikes, and about 600
     personnel, not to speak of a big travelling workshop and two or
     three break-down lorries. When you consider that this is merely
     the means of supplying one single division, you will faintly
     realise what a part mechanical transport plays in this war. There
     is no horse-train to a cavalry division, and the lorries deliver
     rations direct to the regimental quartermasters, so you stand a
     good chance of seeing all the fun if with the M.T. My duty is to
     make arrangements for translating the ration figures rendered
     daily to me by the Cavalry Brigades into terms of meat, bread,
     biscuit, forage, etc., and arrange for these to be loaded at
     railhead on to the lorries; then, in company with the M.T.
     officer of the day, to take these rations up to the units, at the
     same time obtaining the next day's feeding strength from the
     Brigade Supply Officers.

     This particular M.T. column delivered rations in the front line
     trenches back in 1914, and once a portion of it was captured by
     the Boches and recaptured by the 18th Hussars.

     The M.T. officers are a very efficient lot, and know their job
     from A to Z. Among them is Captain Hugh Vivian, a member of the
     famous firm of Vivian & Son, of Swansea and Landore, so near to
     our ancestral home. He is O.C. to the section of lorries to which
     I am attached--a most intellectual man of charming manners, who
     has travelled all over Europe and speaks French and German
     fluently. He is one of the ablest men I have met in the Army and
     I find him one of the best of fellows. He may have to leave us
     shortly, because his thorough knowledge of the metal trades has
     marked him out to the authorities as a man invaluable for the
     production of munitions at home.

     You have to be with a Supply Column in order to get some idea of
     the vast quantities of food that are sent up daily to the Front.
     Never have I seen such quantities--innumerable quarters of meat,
     tons of bully, crates of biscuits, and cheese, butter, jam,
     sugar, tea galore. When you remember that all this food has been
     transported across the Channel, and much of it previously
     imported from foreign countries into England, you begin to
     comprehend the value of sea-power.

     I am told that the Cavalry Brigade have had to fix up a special
     interpreter to assist in the requisitioning work since my
     departure! "Verbum sat sapienti"! Why the authorities should give
     a man nearly a year's training in one job and then shift him to
     something else, without reference to his faculties, experience,
     or wishes, I simply can't tell. Still, there it is, and we must
     assume that they know best.

       *       *       *       *       *

     Early in July began the great battles of the Somme, when our New
     Army displayed before an admiring world its magnificent fighting
     qualities.


                                                _July 9th, 1916._

     Things have been moving "a few" (as the Yanks say) on this front,
     haven't they? Let no one, however, delude himself with the belief
     that the business can be done in five minutes. Things in general
     in this war have a habit of moving slowly; also the enemy is
     undoubtedly well defended. Some of his dug-outs are 30 and 40
     feet deep, with machine-guns on electric hoists, etc. The wily
     Boche has not wasted his time during his twenty odd months on
     this front. But what a relief it is to get back to action after
     so many months of sitting still!

     I have seen numbers of wounded go through the various railheads.
     These cases were comparatively light wounds, the serious cases
     being removed by motor ambulance. But many of the gallant chaps I
     saw seemed in considerable pain. They were sent off in batches as
     soon as possible to a seaport, the returning supply trains being
     utilised for this purpose. Every one was in an incredible state
     of grime. It is the griminess of modern warfare that strikes me
     as its most characteristic feature.

     For a whole fortnight I have lived, moved and had my being in a
     motor-lorry. I found it quite comfortable, though it was not
     inside the body of the vehicle that I had my dwelling. You see
     the lorries are almost always full of rations ready for delivery;
     so I slept in the driver's seat, and found it quite tolerable. It
     is just like the driver's seat on a motor-bus; in fact, many of
     the lorries are old London General omnibuses converted.
     Personally, I never wish for anything better, least of all on
     active service. There was a cushion and I had my blanket bag.
     What more could a man want?

     The Ulster Division did remarkably well in the recent fighting. I
     am not surprised, for I saw them training in England, and was
     impressed by their toughness--hard-bitten, short, powerfully
     built men, who took things very seriously.

     I can't tell you with what joy and pride I learnt that Lloyd
     George had been made Minister for War! I regard him as the
     outstanding personality of the age. Granted that he is sometimes
     rash, granted that he does not always master the details of the
     problem he is dealing with, granted that he sometimes propounds
     schemes before they are ripe; yet against that place (1) his
     wonderful personality, (2) his boundless vitality and energy, (3)
     his heartfelt sympathy for the downtrodden ones of the world, (4)
     his wonderful ideas and ideals, (5) his quickness of
     intelligence, (6) his ardent patriotism, (7) his remarkable
     powers of oratory, and (8) his almost uncanny gift of seeing into
     the future--and you have a man whose superior it would indeed be
     hard to find. Nietzsche would have welcomed him as his superman
     incarnate! I have never wavered in my admiration for L. G. Even
     when he was in hot water over Marconis, I stuck to him. Anyhow,
     was there ever a man who was absolutely perfect? Let us, for
     Heaven's sake, judge a man on his great points, and not "crab the
     goods" by always emphasising his weaknesses. Lloyd George is the
     man whom the Germans have more cause to fear than all the rest of
     the Cabinet or any of our authorities, civil or military.


                                               _July 17th, 1916._

     In that mysterious quarter known as the back of the Front the
     motor-lorry is omnipresent, especially at a time like this.
     Wherever you go you see motor-lorries carrying food, ammunition,
     telegraphic appliances, barbed wire, gas cylinders, clothing,
     coal; in short, every sort and kind of article necessary to the
     service of an army in the field. Sometimes they are even used to
     carry up troops and to bring down wounded. During the Loos push,
     for instance, this column was hurriedly requisitioned to take up
     a Yorkshire battalion to the Hohenzollern Redoubt.

     I was much interested in Kittermaster's last letter published in
     _The Alleynian_--a very characteristic bit of writing. There were
     very few fellows or masters either who ever got at Kitter's inner
     nature. He was always somewhat of a mystery to most people. This
     was accentuated by his taciturn temperament, his rather distant
     manner, and short, brusque way of speaking. But he certainly was
     one of the very best masters I can remember at Dulwich, and of
     the Corps he was a wonderful O.C. There have been many tributes
     to Kitter, but I scarcely think that people have done full
     justice in the obituary notices to Nightingale, the other Dulwich
     master who has given his life in the war--a sterling chap if ever
     there was one.

     So Howard,[8] as well as R. B. B. Jones, now figures in the death
     roll! It seems but yesterday that we three were ragging together
     in the swimming baths, of which both these chaps were great
     habitués.

         [Footnote 8: C. C. Howard. Born, 1897. Killed, May 23rd,
         1916. Held an exhibition in science at Trinity College,
         Cambridge. Lieutenant, Loyal North Lancashires.]

     I am very sad, too, at the death of A. W. Fischer.[9] He and I
     got our 1st XV colours together in Killick's year, and were the
     best of friends throughout his last two years at school. He was a
     smallish, active forward of the Irish type, a splendid hard
     worker all through the game. He and I never on any occasion got
     crocked, and we played in every 1st XV match for two consecutive
     seasons, 1912-1914. He was a shrewd fellow, too, and well read,
     particularly in the classics. He had a very deep, rich voice, and
     used to do well every time in the competition for the Anstie
     Memorial Reading Prize. As a soldier he would have been almost
     ideal, as he was a rare good leader, and a devil-may-care chap
     who feared nothing. It is inexpressibly sad that he should have
     been taken away thus. And I haven't even seen him since we parted
     at the end of the summer term, 1914, just before this holocaust
     started. We shook hands on saying "Good-bye" on the cricket
     ground, he proceeding towards the school buildings, and I towards
     the pavilion. He was to have gone to Cambridge the ensuing
     October, and we had been talking of his chances of a "Blue," and
     if we would be able to play against each other in the coming
     season. But what use to raise up the vanished ghosts of the past?
     It only makes the tragedy more heart-breaking. It is up to us to
     see that these lives have not been laid down in vain.

         [Footnote 9: A. W. Fischer. Born, 1895. Died of wounds, May
         12th, 1916. In the 1st XV, 1912-13-14. Held the Tancred
         Studentship for Classics and Science at Caius College,
         Cambridge. Lieutenant, Devonshire Regiment.]


                                               _July 25th, 1916._

     I was up yesterday in the region where we won ground from the
     Germans, seeing to a dump of rations. The chief impression I
     brought away with me was one of all-pervading dust. I have
     witnessed a few scenes of destruction in my time out here, but
     nothing to match a certain village in this area. Vermelles was
     bad enough, but this place is even worse. Everything in it has
     been razed to the ground. Except for an occasional square foot of
     masonry protruding out of the earth, there is nothing to suggest
     that there was ever a village here at all. In one old German
     trench I saw a cross with the following words written on it:
     "Hier liegen zwei Franz. Krieger," which interpreted would be:
     "Here lie two French warriors," a tribute by the enemy to two
     Frenchmen buried here earlier in the war before we took over this
     portion of the line.

     Alas! another old pal of mine has been killed, namely W. J.
     Henderson,[10] a captain of the Loyal North Lancashires. In the
     old days at Dulwich he did well in football. He got into the 2nd
     XV under Evans, and frequently played for the 1st XV. He was also
     decidedly clever, and won a classical scholarship at Oxford. The
     war is taking a frightful toll of the best of our race.

         [Footnote 10: Captain W. J. Henderson, M.C. Born, 1895.
         Killed in action, July 6th, 1916. A senior classical scholar
         at Dulwich. Won a classical scholarship at Corpus Christi
         College, Oxford. Joined the Army, September, 1914.]


                                               _July 27th, 1916._

     I should like to have your permission to apply for a transfer to
     the Royal Field Artillery. The procedure will be quite simple. I
     will send in my application to the O.C., who will forward it with
     the Medical Officer's health certificate to the higher A.S.C.
     authorities; then it will go forward in the usual course. If the
     people in charge think my record satisfactory and my eyesight
     good enough they will take me. I want to give the authorities a
     chance to take or refuse me for a really combatant corps. In this
     way, whether refused or accepted, I shall have satisfied my
     conscience. After all, the doctor will state on the medical
     certificate exactly what my vision is. So there will be no
     question of trying to deceive the authorities. They will have
     before them all the facts _re_ my record and my eyesight. If they
     then refuse me, well and good. I shall accept the inevitable. If
     they take me, so much the better. I have had several chats with
     the Officer Commanding the Supply Column on the subject, and
     explained to him that I was utterly fed up with grocery work.

     The scenes I have witnessed during and since this great
     attack--the Somme battles--have confirmed my resolution to go
     into the fighting line. You who have not seen the horrors of a
     modern campaign cannot possibly know the feelings of a young man
     who, while the real business of war is going on at his very elbow
     (for we are not far from the centre of things), and who is
     longing to be in the thick of the fighting, is yet condemned to
     look after groceries and do work which a woman could do probably
     a great deal better.

     Oh! it is awful. And all this, mind you, with the knowledge that
     all the chaps one used to know are in the thick of it.

     To sum up, I recognise that I have a serious physical defect. I
     shall not attempt to conceal it from the authorities; it would be
     wrong to do so. But I have also many physical, and I think some
     mental, advantages over the average man. Moreover, I am young and
     exceptionally strong. I give you my word of honour that in making
     my application I shall not conceal the facts about my short
     sight. Having lodged my application for transfer, it will be for
     the authorities to say whether they will take me or leave me.
     Please, please, give your approval to my putting in such an
     application. Occasions come to every man when he has to make up
     his mind for himself and by himself--as I did about my move to
     the Modern side of Dulwich. Was that a failure?


                                              _August 8th, 1916._

     I am more thankful than I can say to have your permission to
     apply for transfer to the R.F.A. Since I wrote to you a circular
     has come from G.H.Q. stating that officers for the artillery are
     wanted urgently. They propose to send home two hundred officers a
     month till further notice for training at the Artillery School. I
     want, if possible, to avoid going home to train. I would like to
     go through my training course here, but I fear beggars can't be
     choosers, and in the case of a highly technical arm like the
     gunners the training may have to be done in England. Everybody
     with us is feeling restive; the inaction that prevails is getting
     beyond a joke.

     As for the A.S.C., I consider that my particular branch of the
     service is overstocked. In itself the mere fact of the work not
     appealing to me (though I absolutely loathe it) would not be
     decisive. It is because I am convinced that I could do better
     work in other directions that I am longing for a transfer. Even
     the transport side of the A.S.C. I would not object to. It is the
     Supply, or grocery, side that I loathe. Had I remained in the
     post of Requisitioning Officer, with its variety of work and the
     possibility of exercising my linguistic gifts, I would have been
     moderately content. But in my heart and soul I have always longed
     for the rough-and-tumble of war as for a football match. What I
     have seen of the war out here has not frightened me in the least,
     but rather made me keener than ever to take part in the fighting.
     It is all very well to be an "organiser of victory," but it does
     not appeal to me, even if I had the particular type of mind
     necessary for success at it. But I am not a good business man,
     and the details of business bore me stiff. On the other hand, it
     is my passionate desire to share the hardships and dangers of
     this war.

     It is not only my own desire and my own temperament that
     influence me, but the example of others. I pick up my newspaper
     to-day, and what do I see? Why, that a fellow that sat in the
     same form-room as I did two years back has won the V.C., paying,
     it is true, with his life for the honour. But what a glorious
     end! I mean, of course, my namesake, Basil Jones, the first
     Dulwich V.C., of whose achievement one can scarcely speak without
     a lump in the throat. Likewise I see my friend S. H. Killick, to
     whom I gave football colours, has been wounded. And think of the
     men who have fallen! Men of the stamp of Julian Grenfell, D. O.
     Barnett,[11] Rupert Brooke, Roland Philipps, R. G. Garvin, and W.
     J. Henderson have not hesitated to give up for their country all
     the brilliant gifts of character and intellect with which they
     would have enriched England had it not been for the war. The
     effect on me is as a trumpet call. All the old Welsh fighting
     blood comes surging up in me and makes me say, "Short sight or no
     short sight, I _will_ prove my manhood!" If it should be my fate
     to get popped off--well, it is we younger men without dependants
     whose duty it is to take the risk. You will get some inkling of
     my feeling when you read in Garvin's father's article how his
     son, when sent off to the Divisional H.Q., lost all his spirits
     and begged to be sent back to the old battalion, and how, when he
     did get back to it, "his letters recovered their old clear tone."
     How well I can understand that!

         [Footnote 11: Lieutenant D. O. Barnett, killed in action,
         1916, was a distinguished scholar and athlete at St. Paul's
         School. His career there presents a striking similarity to
         that of Paul Jones at Dulwich. Both won junior and senior
         scholarships; both ended their school career by winning a
         Balliol scholarship; both shone in athletics; Barnett was
         captain of St. Paul's School; Paul Jones was head of the
         Modern Side at Dulwich.]

     My application for a transfer to the R.F.A. has now gone in. If I
     am refused I shall be broken-hearted, but my conscience will be
     clear. If I am accepted, it will be the happiest day of my life.

     A few words now about some personal experiences. At a certain
     village not far from here are a number of Boche prisoners. Every
     day they go out to shovel refuse into army wagons, and then
     unload these wagons elsewhere on to refuse heaps. It is a daily
     occurrence to see a Boche mount up on the box beside the English
     driver, and off they go--if the Boche can speak English--chatting
     merrily as if there had never been a war. I have even seen Tommy
     hand over the reins to his captive, who cheerfully takes them and
     drives the wagon to its destination, while the real driver sits
     back with folded arms. That will show you how far the British
     soldier cultivates the worship of Hate. It is small incidents of
     this kind, unofficial and even illegal though they may be, that
     make one realise the true secret of Britain's greatness--her
     magnanimity and her kindliness.


                                             _August 14th, 1916._

     The Dulwich Army List makes very interesting reading, though I
     notice some omissions and errors in it. Everyone seems to be
     doing something. It is as good a record as that of any other
     school or institution of any kind in the country. I have not yet
     had any news about my move to the Gunners, but the application
     has only been in a comparatively short time, and these things
     have to take their course. I know that my application was duly
     forwarded and recommended by my C.O. to the Divisional
     authorities. I shall be very much surprised if I don't get the
     transfer. By Jove! if I only can. You cannot imagine anyone being
     so fed up with anything as I am with my present job. Loathing is
     not the word for the feeling with which I regard it.

     I am reading Burke on the French Revolution. It is brilliant
     writing, to be sure, but Burke is too biased and has not complete
     knowledge of his subject. You would think from the way he writes
     that the "Ancien Régime" was an ideal system of government which
     brought to France nothing but prosperity! Had he possessed the
     knowledge of Arthur Young, who had examined social and economic
     conditions in France with piercing eyes, he would doubtless have
     modified his views. Moreover, Burke forgets the maxim he himself
     laid down in his speeches on the American Revolution--that large
     masses of men do not, as a rule, rebel without some reason for so
     doing. It seems to me that Burke's heart and his inborn
     prejudices have run away with his head. Though he scoffs at
     people who try to work out systems of government on the lines of
     idealism, yet his own views are often purely idealistic,
     especially on the subject of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, whom
     he apparently regarded as a pair of demigods!

     The style of the book is splendidly oratorical, sometimes too
     much so, but there are passages in it which it would be difficult
     to match even in the splendid realm of English prose--for
     example, his great panegyric on the State. On England, too, he is
     very fine. Many people to-day might do worse than read his
     defence of the British Constitution, though I personally disagree
     with some points in his argument. One sentence from this passage
     might be addressed to our Allies very appropriately
     to-day--"Because half a dozen grasshoppers under a fern make the
     field ring with their importunate chink, whilst thousands of
     great cattle reposing beneath the shadow of the British oak chew
     the cud and are silent, pray do not imagine that those who make
     the noise are the only inhabitants of the field."

     Unfortunately the British people do bear a strong resemblance to
     great cattle, and it requires a Lloyd George to awaken the
     sleeping animals and galvanise them into movement.

     Recently I got hold of a volume of de Musset. There is some
     beautiful verse in it, especially the "Ode to Lamartine," in
     which he has a great tribute to Byron.

     Could you send me out the programme of the coming Promenade
     Concert season? I would give anything to hear Wagner and
     Beethoven once more. My allegiance to these giants, as to
     Shakespeare and Milton, grows stronger every day. The appalling
     tawdry trash that passes for music nowadays, and the degradation
     of art and literature which seems to be the feature of the
     twentieth century, intensify my loyalty to great musicians and
     noble writers. What is the cause of this decadence? There is
     surely enough inspiration for genius in this colossal war, when
     every day the spirit of man is winning new triumphs and deeds of
     extraordinary heroism are being performed.


IN THE SOMME BATTLEFIELD

In August, 1916, Paul Jones was relieved of his uncongenial duties
with the Supply Column and appointed to command an ammunition
working-party located at an advanced railhead in the terrain of the
Somme battles.

                                             _August 21st, 1916._

     I am delighted to tell you that I have been temporarily posted to
     a job of real interest and responsibility, having been given the
     command of a working-party composed of infantry, artillery, and
     A.S.C. men, whose function it is to load and unload ammunition at
     an important railhead not far from the Front. We are about 150 in
     all, and a very happy family. We live in tents and work under the
     orders of the Railhead Ordnance authorities. There is a vast
     amount of work, and it goes on continuously, at present from 4
     A.M. to 9 P.M. daily, and sometimes throughout the night as well.
     It is a revelation to see the immense quantities of explosives,
     etc., that are sent up. I have nothing further to report about
     the R.F.A. transfer, but my C.O. has assured me that if my
     application is not successful I shall be able to return shortly
     to the Cavalry Brigade in my old capacity as Requisitioning
     Officer.

     This working ammunition-party of which I am in command is located
     in a little town well in the swirl of war, with the guns booming
     in the near distance most of the day and night. The "unit under
     my command," to put it in official language, lives in a field by
     the railhead. We have a pair of first-rate sergeants (R.H.A. and
     Infantry) and various very sound A.S.C. n.c.o.s in charge.
     Everything goes merrily as a wedding-bell. A gunner officer looks
     after the administrative welfare, pay, etc., of the artillerymen,
     but the discipline and command of the unit as a whole devolve on
     yours truly.

     Next door to us across the line there is a concentration camp of
     Boche prisoners. They work on the railway all day shovelling
     stones in and out of trucks and lorries. To the eternal credit of
     England the treatment the prisoners receive, the food supplied to
     them, and the conditions under which they live are all of the
     very best. They have their being in tents within a barbed wire
     enclosure, not too crowded, and have excellent washing facilities
     (hot baths once a week), good food and conveniences for its
     preparation, including huge camp kettles for cooking--in short,
     every comfort possible. The work they do is hard, but no harder
     than that many of our own fellows have to do in the normal course
     of events. The considerate way in which our prisoners are treated
     is a great tribute to British chivalry. An old French soldier,
     watching them one day in their camp, said to me: "Vous les
     traitez trop bien ces salots." I replied: "Oui, mais c'est comme
     ça que l'Angleterre fait la guerre--avec les mains toujours
     propres."

     I was grieved to hear of the death of Lieutenant Ivor Rees, of
     Llanelly. He was a great friend of Arthur and Tom. It is awful,
     there is no doubt about it, the sacrifice of these lives cut
     short in their prime, but they are not wasted; of that I am
     convinced. Besides:

       One crowded hour of glorious life
       Is worth an age without a name.

     Lloyd George's Eisteddfod speech was very stirring. I like that
     phrase, "The blinds of Britain are not drawn down." I see the
     papers are discussing Ministerial changes. I hope whatever
     happens that Lloyd George will remain at the War Office--it is
     the place where his personality is wanted. I am reading two
     interesting French books: Émile Faguet's "Short History of French
     Literature" and Dumas' "Vingt Ans Après." I wish you would send
     me Kant's "Critique of Pure Reason," or one of Hegel's books.
     This evening I listened to Beethoven's "Egmont" overture--what a
     glorious work it is! Keep your eye for me on any books dealing
     with Beethoven or the immortal Richard.


                                           _September 2nd, 1916._

     I am still in command of the ammunition working-party, and,
     entailing as it does real work and responsibility, am enjoying it
     hugely. All our men seem very happy. Their rations and living
     conditions are excellent. We have our own canteen, which does a
     great trade. It is a bad day if the canteen fails to take 250
     francs, although it is open only from 12 to 2 and from 6 to 8 as
     per regulations.

     We get our stuff from the nearest branch of the Expeditionary
     Force canteens, a military unit which does a colossal business at
     the back of the Front. It has depôts almost as large as those of
     the A.S.C. A sergeant-major of the nearest branch of the E.F.C.
     tells me that they calculate that at one depôt they take more
     money in a day than Harrod's Stores do in a week. The place is
     chock-a-block from morning to night, and outside there is always
     waiting a string of lorries, mess-carts, wagons, limbers, from
     all over the place. The part played by the E.F.C. in the war is
     by no means unimportant. It is a regular military unit, with
     officers, n.c.o.s and men (in khaki, of course), run under the
     authority of the War Office and subject to military law. Profits
     on sales go to the purchase of fresh stock, and I believe, in
     part, to the Military Canteens Fund at the War Office. The whole
     thing is run by the Director of Supply and Transport at the W.O.,
     and is commanded out here by an A.S.C. major. It is difficult not
     to make profits on canteens; even in our comparatively small one,
     we constantly find ourselves saddled with more money than is
     required, and this although the prices charged to the men are the
     lowest possible. One great merit of the canteens is that they
     prevent the men from being "rooked" by unscrupulous civilians,
     who, I regret to say, are to be found in force in some of these
     French towns and villages.

     The military canteen movement on its present huge scale has only
     been possible to us because of (1) the comparatively high rates
     of pay in the British Army; (2) the command of the sea, making
     transport from England simple and easy; (3) the inexhaustible
     reservoirs of supply and manufacture that exist within the
     British Empire. There can be no doubt about it that the path of
     the British soldier in this war has been made as easy as it is
     possible to make it--an incalculable advantage to a nation that
     has had to create a great voluntary Army in a comparatively short
     space of time. Whatever faults the military authorities may have
     committed in other directions, they have kept steadily in view
     the Napoleonic maxim, "An army moves on its stomach."

     The Boche prisoners round about here work energetically. They
     must, I fancy, be amazed themselves at the manner in which they
     are treated--the abundance of food, the entire absence of rancour
     on our part, and the general conditions under which they work and
     live. Actually, they get their Sunday afternoons off. Some of
     them have been given a little plot of land close to the
     internment camp, where they are busy gardening in their leisure
     time. In the camp they have all sorts of work-tables and tools,
     and you often see some of them doing carpentering after their
     day's work is done. The prisoners stroll about the camp and its
     environs at will, and the men on guard are continually chatting
     and joking with them. The ration of the prisoners includes fresh
     meat and bread every day, and a supply of tobacco and cigarettes
     once a week. It is much to the credit of Britain that her
     captives in war should be treated with so much generosity. Don't
     let the Government abandon this policy of broad magnanimity
     because of the noisy clamour of armchair reprisalists at home. By
     the way, these Boche prisoners observe the rules of discipline
     even in their captivity, and when British or French officers pass
     by they stand respectfully to attention. Most of the prisoners
     are big chaps.

     If you have not read it, let me recommend to you a book by John
     Buchan called "The Thirty-nine Steps." To my mind it is the
     cleverest detective story I have read since the exploits of
     Sherlock Holmes. It is in a way a sort of enlarged version of an
     earlier story by Buchan that appeared in _Blackwood's Magazine_
     called the "Power House." As in the "Power House," the chief
     villain is merely hinted at; he is only fully revealed in the
     last page. Throughout the rest of the story he is one of those
     genial, cheery old men who are always puffing cigars and drinking
     whisky. The incidents take place in England and are connected
     with a series of events that precipitated the present war. I
     enjoyed the book and admired the ingenuity with which the plot is
     worked out. The writing is vigorous and there is no sloppy
     sentimentality.


                                           _September 6th, 1916._

     Yesterday my working party had orders suddenly to shift its
     quarters to a spot farther up the line. Having struck camp we
     started off about 2 P.M. in motor char-à-bancs and lorries. After
     about two hours' plunging about in roads that were like quagmires
     we arrived at our destination, a newly formed railhead, not far
     from the battle line. It is situated on a sort of plateau. The
     surrounding country is thick with guns. In the past twelve hours
     there has been a terrific bombardment, the guns booming
     incessantly. Even Loos, which wasn't so bad while it lasted,
     pales into insignificance in comparison. At night the sky reminds
     one of the Crystal Palace firework show in its palmiest days. It
     is a fine place this from the point of view of health, being high
     up and open to the fresh air and the sunshine. I am feeling
     absolutely splendid both in health and spirits. It is a treat to
     be up where things are happening.


                                          _September 12th, 1916._

     Pursuant to orders from the Division, I marched my party up to
     join another working party that is engaged on duty whose scope
     extends as far as the most recently gained ground. We are
     quartered along with a lot of cavalry at a point in the area
     captured, and are just in front of our big guns. The country all
     around is a veritable abomination of desolation. Its surface is
     intersected at innumerable points with ditches, in which much
     splendid English blood has flowed. Here and there, looking very
     forlorn, are stark and blasted stumps that used to be woods.
     Above and around the ceaseless voice of the guns fills the air
     with its clamour. Steel helmets and gas helmets are the standing
     order for us when on duty.

     Whom do you think I met this morning to my great delight? No less
     a person than Peaker,[12] now an officer of the K.R.R.s. He was
     just back from a certain spot in the line, where his lot had
     "gone over" with good results. The story of his experiences
     occasioned heartburnings to myself as regards the part I've been
     playing in the war behind the battle line. He had recently met
     Cartwright, G. T. K. Clarke, and the elder Dawson--all old
     Alleynians, who have had the privilege of participating in the
     "push." On the advice of the Divisional A.A. and Q.M.G., I am
     reluctantly leaving over the question of transfer to the R.F.A.
     till things get more settled. At present I am away from the
     Division, and it is difficult, almost impossible in fact, for me
     to arrange the interviews with the Medical and Artillery
     authorities that are necessary as a preliminary to transfer.
     Still, as I am getting plenty of interesting work at my present
     job I don't mind waiting.

         [Footnote 12: Captain A. P. Peaker, M.C., of the K.R.R. (son
         of Mr. F. Peaker, of the _Morning Post_), who was a
         contemporary of Paul Jones's at Dulwich, and won an Oxford
         classical exhibition in December, 1914.]


                                          _September 14th, 1916._

     Last night I was detailed to go up with a working party engaged
     in operations on the very site of the last great battle. The
     whole business took place under cover of darkness. After an hour
     and a half's trudging, up hill and down dale, we got to the
     allotted spot and began our work. The night was alive with
     noises--ear-splitting reports of big guns, the shrieks and
     whistles of shells in transit, and the rat-tat-tat of
     machine-guns. Now and again the darkness would be illuminated by
     the glare of star-shells. I think I mentioned to you before the
     mournful desolation of this war-scarred countryside--land without
     grass, without trees, without houses, nothing more now than a
     wilderness, with yawning shell craters innumerable, and here and
     there blackened and branchless stumps that used to be trees. We
     were near the site of a village famous in the annals of British
     arms. A single brick of that village would be worth its weight in
     gold as a souvenir. As we worked in the darkness the air was
     polluted by a horrible stench, and as soon as one's eyes got
     accustomed to the gloom there became visible silent twisted forms
     that used to be men. But enough; I dare not tell you of the
     ghastly scenes on that historic battlefield; it would give you
     nightmare for weeks to come if I did.

     Out here one gets into a callous state, in which these things,
     while unpleasant, are scarcely noticed in the whirl and confusion
     of events. Personally at the time, in traversing this
     battlefield, I was slightly horrified at first, but chiefly
     conscious only of the frightful odour of mortality. It is on
     thinking the thing over in retrospect and with cold blood that
     the real sense of horror begins to creep into one's soul. Such
     is the so-called "ennobling influence of war"! As I went over
     this grim battlefield, with all its tragic sights, I reflected
     bitterly on the triumph of twentieth-century civilisation.

     Our work occupied us about five hours, and we trekked for home
     before dawn. Through the night there was movement and
     activity--ration parties, walking wounded, stretcher-bearers,
     reliefs, all moving silently in the darkness like so many
     phantoms. I have picked up a number of souvenirs from the old
     Boche trenches, including a Boche steel helmet, with a shrapnel
     hole in the side as big as a crown-piece. Its wearer must have
     "gone West" instanter.


                                          _September 21st, 1916._

     In the last few days two other officers and myself have been in
     charge of working parties. Starting out at 8 A.M., it is our
     habit to proceed on foot to places distant anything up to three
     and four miles, returning in the late afternoon. Yesterday we got
     to our destination about 9 A.M., and found the Boche "crumping"
     with fair regularity the vicinity of an apology for a road.
     Though little more than a muddy track, and only recently captured
     by us, this road is full of traffic most hours of the day. The
     "Hun" knows this and acts accordingly. As we were marching gaily
     up about 9 A.M. he began a "strafe" of the district with pretty
     heavy shells at intervals of a couple of minutes. Suddenly came a
     bang about thirty yards in front of us on the road, and he put a
     beautiful shot almost under the wheels of a lorry, digging a huge
     crater in the road, into which the crumpled-up chassis subsided
     with a crash. Fortunately the driver was not there, or for him it
     would have been a case of "kingdom come." I was at the head of
     our lot, along with my friend Lieutenant Gardner. We considered
     what we should do--whether to push straight through to our
     destination, which was not two hundred yards away, to wait where
     we were, or split up into small parties. We arranged that he
     should lead on, while I would wait to see all the column pass and
     hurry up stragglers. Gardner had not got farther than fifty yards
     when a six-incher came plonk within a few yards of him. Luckily
     he and all his lot had time to prostrate themselves, and there
     were no casualties. I was gathering the remainder of the party,
     when whew! crash! and I felt a terrific detonation at my very
     elbow, and for a moment was stunned and deafened. A Boche shell
     had pitched not five yards behind me. How I was not blown to
     smithereens will always be a marvel to me. As I staggered about
     under the shock of the explosion I could feel bits of steel and
     earth pattering on my helmet like rain. After the first momentary
     shock I was in full possession of my wits, and I quickly realised
     that, for the moment at least, I had lost all sense of hearing in
     my right ear. But this was a small price to pay for the escape.
     Such a miracle would assuredly never happen again. A few hours
     later I had regained a good deal of hearing power, but it is not
     right yet. Experts, however, tell me that this effect will pass
     off in time. A fragment of the shell passed through the right
     sleeve of my heavy overcoat. I am glad to say we had no
     casualties at all, though the enemy kept on dropping heavy stuff
     round about us all day.

     Well, cheer-oh! I am keeping as fit as a horse. My appetite, I
     regret to say, gets bigger every day.


                                          _September 27th, 1916._

     Our working party having finished its duties, I have now been
     appointed Requisitioning Officer to the 2nd Cavalry Brigade.
     This is much better than that horrible job with the Supply
     Column. The war news is splendid, but some glorious men have
     "gone West." We are paying a big price for victory. The death of
     Raymond Asquith is a great tragedy. A brilliant life
     extinguished, one that gave promise of great things. I had a
     shock to-day on reading in the paper that my old friend H.
     Edkins,[13] who took a Junior Scholarship at Dulwich in the same
     year as I did, is reported among the missing. He was an able and
     gifted fellow. Do you remember how well he sang at the school
     concert in December, 1914? With all my heart I hope he's all
     right. I wish you would get for me Professor Moulton's book, "The
     Analytic Study of Literature."

         [Footnote 13: Lieutenant Harrison Edkins, 1st Surrey Rifles.
         Born, July 5th, 1896. Killed, September 15th, 1916. At
         Dulwich he was captain of fives; Editor of _The Alleynian_,
         1915. In December, 1914, he won the Charles Oldham Classical
         Scholarship at Corpus Christi College, Oxford.]


WITH THE 2nd CAVALRY BRIGADE

                                             _October 3rd, 1916._

     Here I am a Requisitioning Officer again, this time for another
     Cavalry Brigade. I was sorry not to get back to my old comrades.
     Still, it is a change to work with new regiments. This Cavalry
     Brigade is a famous body of troops. To it belongs the honour of
     having been the first lot of Britishers in action in the war.
     While I like my duties, I am beginning to feel restive, and am
     longing to get back to the real battle zone. What think you of
     our new war machines? [Tanks were first employed on September 15,
     1916.--_Editor._] I have had many opportunities of studying them
     on the move. One would scarcely believe it possible they could
     go over ground such as I have seen them comfortably traverse. No
     obstacle seems insurmountable to them. They are quaint-looking
     things, but, in spite of the Press correspondents, they are no
     more like to, or suggestive of, primeval monsters than a cow
     resembles a chaff-cutter.

     Ireland is an enigma and no mistake. The man who settles the
     Irish problem will go down to history. The difficulty would
     appear to be to effect any _rapprochement_ of the English and
     Irish national points of view, these having been determined by
     the different environments of the two races. In national life as
     in nature the law of natural selection operates.

     I rejoice to say that I've got two horses again, one a big brown
     horse, very strong and a hard worker, the other a powerful bay
     mare. Neither is particularly good-looking, but I've learnt from
     experience that soundness and strength in a horse are more to be
     desired than good looks, especially when campaigning. It is
     seldom that you can combine all the qualities. Breed and blood
     tell in horses. A well-bred horse will outlast a common one,
     because it tries harder. What you want is a judicious mixture of
     breed and strength. My two horses are pretty well-bred and have
     great strength, and always try hard; so I'm pretty well off, I
     reckon.

     I observe that those blighted Zeppelins have been about England
     again. But really the Zepp. is a colossal failure, whether you
     regard it from the point of view of doing military injury, or
     damage likely in any way to help Germany in the war, such as
     impairing the morale of the British people. The best reply to the
     Zepps. is being given day and night on the Somme, where hundreds
     of thousands of Boches must at present be wishing they had never
     been born. I am surprised they have stuck our bombardment as they
     have done, but I am bound to say that the Boche is by no means a
     coward.

     I am at present deeply immersed in Kant's "Critique of Pure
     Reason." It is a great work, and not by any means one to be read
     in a hurry. Every line is charged full with deep thinking. It
     appeals to me intensely. Kant's was a gigantic mind.


                                            _November 3rd, 1916._

     Our Cavalry Brigade has been on the move for some time. In these
     circumstances I am always busily employed. Every day that we move
     I go on with the brigade advance parties, go round the billets
     that the troops are going to occupy, and make all arrangements
     with the French inhabitants for a plentiful supply of fuel, straw
     and forage to be available for the troops when they arrive. The
     weather recently has been the reverse of clement. The first
     stages of the move were accomplished in pitiless rain, the more
     recent ones in weather fairly dry, but bitterly cold. Not that
     vicissitudes of weather worry me. I never enjoy life so much as
     when I'm fully occupied with hard work like that I am now doing,
     which is really useful and responsible.

     The question of Ireland remains a perplexing one. We have two
     Irishmen in our mess, one a Unionist, the other a Nationalist.
     The impression one gets from them at least is the hopelessness of
     our being ever able to settle the Irish problem. It is largely,
     of course, a question of temperament. The Ulsterman with us is
     all for the "strong hand" policy, but I pointed out to him the
     absurdity of our adopting Prussian tactics, especially at this
     moment. He agreed, but steadfastly maintained that, judging
     purely from results, Balfour was the best Chief Secretary Ireland
     has ever had. He frankly admitted that Carson made himself liable
     to be tried for high treason at the time of the Larne gunrunning.
     He also agreed with me that to administer an irritant to a man
     recovering from brain fever is a very risky policy. In fact, we
     came round to the old conclusion in which, to quote "Rasselas,"
     "nothing is concluded." It is a thousand pities that so able,
     attractive and intelligent a race as the Irish should have such
     an accursedly impossible temperament. It is the unimaginative,
     easygoing, supremely practical Englishman who is the ideal
     governor in this foolish world, not the hot-headed idealist.


                                           _November 10th, 1916._

     I am starting off to-day on rather a big, albeit safe job,
     namely, purchasing all the hay and straw in a certain area on
     behalf of the Cavalry Division. It is an important commission and
     will take me about a week to execute.

     We have arrived at another stagnant period in the war. That was a
     happy definition of it as "long spells of acute boredom
     punctuated by short spells of acute fear."

     What brilliant soldiers the French are! It amazes me that they
     should be able to "strafe" the Boches so constantly, and at
     points where one would least expect them to. The recapture of
     Douaumont was, in my opinion, one of the best bits of work in the
     war. Of course, the French Army is superbly generalled, and it
     has a military tradition second to none in the world. A nation
     that can boast of men like Vauban, Turenne, Condé, Soult,
     Masséna, Ney, and Macdonald (I don't mention Napoleon, because he
     was not really a Frenchman at all) has a glorious military
     tradition worth living up to.

     On the other hand, I cannot withhold praise from the wonderful
     organisation of the Boches. The way in which they repeatedly take
     the bull by the horns and attack the encircling ring of their
     enemies at some new point is extraordinary. Where on earth did
     they find men for their Rumanian campaign? There can be no doubt
     that they are a very stiff foe to beat, and they are not easily
     "rattled" by failures or defeats. But it is undeniable that they
     were badly "rattled" on the Somme. British achievements there
     enable one to look with great hope to the future, when our full
     strength will be in the field. Man for man the German soldier is
     no match for the British Tommy.

     I was amazed to read in the papers that the Dulwich 1st XV have
     been beaten by Merchant Taylors'. If that really happened, then
     truly it is a case of "Ichabod," and "The glory is departed from
     Israel."


                                           _November 17th, 1916._

     I am still detached temporarily from Headquarters, travelling
     about in a motor-car for the purpose of securing local supplies
     of forage and straw in the area about to be occupied by the
     Cavalry Division. It is very interesting work, with a large human
     element in it; but one has difficulty in getting these French
     farmers and dealers to agree to our prices for their commodities.
     Almost always they want much more for them than is prescribed in
     our schedule of official prices. Taking note of all refusals to
     sell to us, because our prices are too low, I have to-day applied
     for permission to requisition the goods in these cases--that is,
     to take the stuff over compulsorily, handing to the owner a note
     entitling him to draw so much money from the British Requisition
     Office, the amount being settled by us and not by the farmer or
     dealer. That is the way the French Military authorities do
     things. They, of course, are dealing with their own people. It is
     different with us, and French farmers and peasants think they are
     entitled to exact all they can from the English. The French
     authorities, acting through their A.S.C. or the local mayors,
     periodically call on the communes to supply them with so much
     forage, straw and other commodities. These quantities have to be
     supplied _nolens volens_ and at prices fixed by the French Army.
     I can see ourselves being forced reluctantly to adopt the same
     procedure, at least in some cases, though it is much more
     pleasant for both parties when we can buy amicably and pay cash
     on the spot.

     A number of the farmers with whom I had to deal recently are
     "permissionaires"--they get pretty regular leave in the French
     Army. The peasant stock of the North of France has a knack of
     producing good fighting men--they are an unromantic race, but
     amazingly industrious, shrewd, and very tough.

     My car-driver is a Welshman from Pontypridd. He is one of the
     best drivers I've struck out here and a first-rate fellow to
     boot. He has played a lot of Rugby, having turned out several
     times on the wing for Cardiff. He is quite young, not much older
     than myself. Like most Welshmen, he has literary tastes, and has
     a real gift for reciting poetry.

     _The Alleynian_ duly to hand. Its monthly War record for the old
     school makes splendid, albeit mournful reading. How poignant to
     read the record in dates of Edkins's life: "Born, 1896; left
     school, September, 1915; killed in action, 1916." Judging from
     the official account, Frank Hillier[14] must have done great work
     in earning the Military Cross. I see also that K. R. Potter has
     got the M.C. He is one of the most brilliant men Dulwich has
     produced. He was one of the two men to win a Balliol Scholarship
     in Classics in the second of those historic two years when we got
     two in each year--a record equalled by few schools and beaten by
     none. J. S. Mann, who took a Balliol Scholarship at the same
     time as Potter, has been wounded in the trenches.

         [Footnote 14: Lieutenant F. N. Hillier, M.C., R.F.A., son of
         Mr. F. J. Hillier, of the _Daily News_. Educated at Dulwich.]

     Deep was my grief to read of the death in action of R. F.
     Mackinnon,[15] M.C., one of the finest forwards and captains who
     has ever worn the blue-and-black jersey. He was captain of the
     first fifteen in my first year at the school, 1908-9, in which we
     had a pack of forwards of strong physique and whole-hearted
     courage. Arthur Gilligan, who was in the same battalion as
     Mackinnon, told me he was absolutely without fear, and was
     continually working up little "strafes" of the Boches on his own.

         [Footnote 15: Lieutenant Ronald F. Mackinnon, M.C. Born,
         October 23rd, 1889. Killed, October 21st, 1916. Was in the
         Dulwich 1st XV for three seasons, and captain of football
         1908-9; a member of the gymnasium XVI in 1907-8, and won the
         Swimming Challenge Shield in 1908.]


                                           _November 22nd, 1916._

     I have been up to the neck in work, having temporarily to do what
     is really three men's work--Brigade Supply Officer, Brigade
     Requisitioning Officer, and Divisional Forage Purchasing
     Officer--the last a newly-created post under the direction of the
     Corps H.Q. It is no joke personally arranging the payments for
     all the forage in an area fifteen square miles by ten. To-day I
     found it impossible to continue and do the work efficiently
     without assistance. It is not so much the getting the forage as
     the amount of accounting that is involved. I fear I am a poor
     accountant at best, and the figuring involved in the new scheme
     (there are five enormous Army forms to fill up weekly, in
     addition to the ordinary business side of the transactions) has
     been taxing my energies and has taken up my time long after
     working hours. Major Knox, Senior Supply Officer of the Division
     (an old Dulwich man, at one time the Oxford Cricket Captain, and
     a splendid fellow to boot), spent about six hours to-day with me
     in completely checking our available resources. The fact is that
     the hay ration from England has been very considerably reduced
     for some reason, and we have to make up the deficiency out here,
     permission having been obtained from the French authorities to
     purchase and requisition in various Army areas. This permission
     was for a long time withheld, as the French wanted the local
     supplies for their own troops.

     I am finding the War a boring business; the glamour has decidedly
     worn off. Oh, if we could but get through the Boche lines! As
     things are at present, there is no thrill and not much scope for
     initiative. It is just a sordid affair of mud, shell-holes,
     corpses, grime and filth. Even in billets the thing remains
     intensely dull and uninspiring. One just lives, eats, drinks,
     sleeps, and all apparently to no purpose. The monotony is
     excessive. My chief function in life seems to be the filling up
     of endless Army forms. I thoroughly sympathise with the recent
     protest from military men in the _Spectator_ about the "Military
     Babu," who is occupying an ever larger and larger place in the
     life of the Army. There will be a revolt one of these days
     against the fatuity of this eternal filling up of forms for no
     conceivable purpose.

     It is not only myself, but many of my comrades who are bored by
     the War. To my mind there are only four really interesting
     branches in the Army: (1) Flying Corps; (2) Heavy Artillery; (3)
     Tanks, and (4) Intelligence. It must be intense reaction against
     the drab monotony of life at the Front that is responsible for
     the outbreak of frivolity that is said to have been the leading
     characteristic of life in London and elsewhere of late. The
     Englishman doesn't like thinking; if he did, he would not be the
     splendid fighting man that he is.

     In literature taste had gone to the dogs long before the War, and
     it seems to me that the War has hastened it on its downward path.
     It does seem to me a tragic pity that no great and inspiring work
     has sprung to birth in England from the contemplation of what the
     men of British race have achieved in this War, enduring such
     depressing conditions with so much fortitude and doing such
     glorious deeds whenever there is a chance for action.


                                           _November 29th, 1916._

     More boredom and an incredible amount of figuring, until I loathe
     the very sight of pencil and paper. Thanks for parcels. Everyone
     is so kind that it afflicts me with a sense of shame. Not that
     any amount of gifts is too lavish for the brave men in the
     trenches, but for "peace soldiers," like yours truly, it is very
     different. I am at present living in a beautiful château at a
     perfectly safe distance from the Front, in very pleasant country,
     with a motor-car and two horses at my disposal and every
     conceivable luxury. And then one is asked about the hardships
     that one endures! It really is too absurd. I am by no means the
     only one who feels like this, but I do think it is worse for a
     Celtic temperament than for an Anglo-Saxon one.

     At last there seems to be a chance of escape from this luxurious
     life, for a circular has just come to hand from the O.C., A.S.C.,
     of the Division, intimating that a number of transfers per month
     from the A.S.C. to really fighting units has been sanctioned by
     the War Office, together with a form to be filled up by officers
     desiring to transfer. Of course, I am putting my name down. I am
     deliberating whether to go for Infantry, Artillery, or
     Machine-Gun Corps.


                                            _December 8th, 1916._

     I was medically examined yesterday, and passed fit for general
     service. To-day I filled in the application form, applying for
     (1) Infantry, (2) M.G.C., (3) Royal Artillery. You will doubtless
     want my reasons for this step. (1) It is obvious that they need
     Infantry officers most. It is, therefore, clearly the duty of
     every fit officer to offer his services for the Infantry. I have
     been passed fit by an entirely impartial medical officer, after a
     searching medical examination; therefore it is my duty to go. (2)
     From the personal point of view I have long been most
     dissatisfied with the part I am playing in the War, and I jump at
     the chance of a transfer.

     I don't pretend to be doing the "young hero" stunt. I am not out
     for glory. I have probably seen far more of the War as it really
     is than any other A.S.C. officer in the Division. I know the War
     for the dull, sordid, murderous thing that it is. I don't expect
     for a minute to enjoy the trenches. But anything is better than
     this horrible inaction when all the chaps one knows are
     undergoing frightful hardships and dangers. For a long time the
     argument of physical incapacity weighed with me. I was forced to
     admit that if, on account of defective eyesight, I was not sound
     for Infantry work, it was better that I should stick to a job for
     which I was fit than do badly one for which I was not fit. But I
     have now been passed fit for general service, and this being so I
     would be a craven to hold back from the fighting-line.

     If we are to win this War it will only be through gigantic
     efforts and great sacrifices. It is the chief virtue of the
     public-school system that it teaches one to make sacrifices
     willingly for the sake of _esprit de corps_. Well, clearly, if
     the public-school men hold back, the others will not follow.
     Germany at present [the Germans had recently overrun Rumania] is
     in the best situation--speaking politically--she has been in
     since those dramatic days of the advance on Paris. The British
     effort is only just beginning to bear fruit, and we are called on
     to strain every nerve in our national body to counteract the
     superb organisation of the Boches. That can only be done by
     getting the right man in the right job. Men with special
     qualifications must be given the chance to exercise them. All
     A.S.C. officers should be business men; they could perfectly well
     also be men over military age, as the work demands none of the
     qualifications of youth. For a young chap like myself, without
     any special qualification or training, but full of keenness, with
     good physique and just out of a public school, the trenches are
     emphatically the place.

     Well, anyway, there it is. My application is in, and I am now
     just waiting for G.H.Q. to accept me for the Infantry. I should
     not be surprised if I am back home at Christmas in order to
     train. An excellent recommendation from my C.O. accompanied my
     transfer papers. I also had a satisfactory interview with the
     Major-General commanding the Division, who, I believe, added his
     own recommendation.


                                           _December 20th, 1916._

     I can't tell you how relieved I was to get the Pater's last
     letter, and to feel that we see the matter in the same light. It
     lifted a weight from my mind, as I will frankly admit that I was
     much worried, torn one way by my conscience and another by the
     fear that my action would cause displeasure and grief at home.
     Now, with the Pater's letter in my possession, I can go ahead
     with a light heart. There can be absolutely no question that I've
     done the right thing. It is a mere coincidence that my personal
     feelings have long tended in the same direction. I saw the path
     of duty before me absolutely clear. Up to date I have never "let
     you down," and I don't think I shall do so this time.

     By the way, in my transfer papers, I have expressly stipulated
     for a temporary commission, as I have no idea at all of becoming
     a Regular.


                                             _January 1st, 1917._

     Hearty wishes for a happy New Year, wishes which always seem to
     me more serious than the greetings that pass at Christmas time.
     With most people Christmas is a purely festive season, but with
     the end of the old year comes the necessity of looking forward to
     a new period--perhaps to be joyful, perhaps otherwise; anyway, a
     period on which it is necessary to enter as far as possible with
     confidence. From the general point of view that is not an easy
     matter as things stand. I am bound to say I am getting
     pessimistic about the War. The chief trouble is the total lack of
     action that characterises it. This grovelling in ditches is a
     rotten, foolish business in many ways--though to me sitting in
     comfort and safety behind the lines is a great deal worse.

     We passed a pleasant Christmas. I had dinner and tea with the men
     of the Brigade Headquarters--the former one of the most pleasant
     functions I have ever attended. I much prefer a ceremony of this
     kind along with Demos to the "Tedious pomp ... and grooms
     besmeared with gold" that Milton denounces so scathingly.

     I am sorry the Dulwich 1st XV didn't have a very good season. To
     judge from the photos in the _Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic_,
     the forwards don't know how to pack. One of the "scrum"
     photographs is one of the best illustrations of how not to pack
     that I have ever struck. It seems to me that there has been a
     lack of training. But what I do remark with joy is the care that
     has been taken with the games. All will be well with the school
     if the games are keen.

     I have just been reading the first book that I've found that
     absolutely gets the atmosphere of the Western Front--namely, "The
     Red Horizon," by Patrick McGill, the navvy poet. It really is
     great. He doesn't spare the horror of the thing one iota, but it
     "gets one right." "Sapper" has a good picture of the fighting
     man, but a very bad one of the Front. McGill has got a pretty
     good one of the man and a superb one of the Front. He describes
     to a "T" one's sensations under shell-fire.


                                            _January 11th, 1917._

     Congratulate me! I am, as I have every reason to believe, on the
     verge of the most stupendous good fortune that has ever yet come
     my way. Last night I got a wire ordering me to present myself at
     Headquarters, Heavy M.G.C., for interview with the
     Colonel-in-charge. Well, I went up for my interview this morning,
     and was tested for vision by the Colonel with my glasses on.
     Finally he told me that he was going to recommend me for the
     Tanks, which means that the thing is as good as settled. I had
     not dared to hope for such luck, owing to the fact of my not
     having any special qualification. However, my usual marvellous
     good fortune seems not to have deserted me. It means just this,
     that I am going to be a member of the most modern and most
     interesting branch of the service. So great is my delight that I
     scarcely know whether I am standing on my head or my heels. The
     transfer will, I fear, prevent my coming home on leave for a
     time. Anyway, it's more than possible that I shall come back to
     England to train. I hope not, for despite my earnest
     desire--more than you can ever guess--to see you all again, I
     think it is far better to remain on active service, if possible,
     when on duty.

     I've been pretty busy with my brigade work recently, though to
     nothing like the degree of November and the first fortnight of
     December. One meets strange types of humanity on this sort of
     duty. You can divide the countryfolk round these parts into three
     lots: (_a_) The farmers--on the whole honest, but decidedly
     avaricious; the French farmer's one fear in life is that his
     neighbour across the way is being paid at a higher price than he
     himself. (_b_) The average merchant, who is on the lookout for
     making a bit in all sorts of illegal ways, such as cheating us by
     underweight. (_c_) The honest middlemen, who, I regret to say,
     are few and far between. As far as possible we always try to deal
     with the farmers direct, as they are fairly honest, though very
     obstinate. An honest middleman is very useful, but there are not
     many of him. Business difficulties are increased by the
     extraordinary accent in which the country people hereabouts talk.
     Sometimes even French interpreters find themselves at a loss. I
     am getting into it famously, and can even speak with the local
     accent myself, to a certain extent.

     Did you see that my old colleague, E. C. Cartwright, has got the
     M.C.? His reports of 1st XV matches in Evans's year were the
     feature of _The Alleynian_, as were poor Edkins's reports in the
     year of my own captaincy. Also J. P. Jordan, another O.A., well
     known to me, has won the M.C.

     I am delighted that the Old Man (Mr. A. H. Gilkes) has received
     the living of St. Mary Magdalene at Oxford. He could, I am sure,
     have never had an appointment more to his tastes--barring,
     indeed, his mastership at his beloved Dulwich. As a headmaster
     he was a gigantic character; of that there can be no doubt
     whatever.


                                            _January 28th, 1917._

     No news yet of my application for transfer. But people "in the
     know" tell me that it is only a question of time. The document
     having been approved and recommended by all the necessary
     authorities is, I presume, now wandering through the multifarious
     ramifications of the maze of Army offices, but I am told it will
     soon filter down. One thing that pleases me is an assurance that
     the A.S.C. authorities, whatever may have happened in the past,
     are not this time blocking my transfer. From your knowledge of my
     weaknesses, you will no doubt have guessed that I'm on pins these
     days--the period of waiting for the result of an exam., even if
     you think you've passed, is always a trying one. It is especially
     so for me on account of my absurdly impatient temperament. I fear
     that leave is out of the question till the transfer is settled
     one way or the other.

     The cold weather now prevalent must add yet a fresh discomfort to
     those that are being endured by our men in the trenches. I cannot
     recollect a cold spell of such severity continuing for so long a
     time. We had a heavy snowfall a fortnight back, and since then
     there has been incessant and exceptionally hard frost. The roads
     in places are wellnigh impassable owing to frozen snow. Going
     down one steep hill to-day in our motor-car we all but turned
     completely over, as at a curve in the road the car-wheels,
     instead of answering to the steering gear, skidded on the frozen
     surface, and the car swung completely round on its axis,
     finishing by facing the opposite way to that in which we were
     travelling. Where the roads are not very slippery they are as
     hard as iron. A curious result is that you have a thick dust
     raised over a snow-covered landscape and in bitterly cold
     weather!

     I was much interested in the Balliol College pamphlet and the
     Master's accompanying letter. Balliol appears to have done even
     more than its part in the War. Did you see that the Brakenbury
     Scholarship in History for 1916 was taken by a chap from Gresham
     School, Holt? I often wonder whether I shall ever go up to
     Oxford. Almost needless to say, to go there would be the crowning
     joy of my life, but I cannot help thinking that circumstances
     will render it impossible. Still, we will hope for the best. One
     thing I mean to do after the War is to learn Russian thoroughly
     and to visit Russia. I am not at all sure that travelling is not
     the best of all Universities. The great disadvantage of a
     'Varsity is the insularity of mind which it is apt to breed. Its
     rigid observance of ancient customs, its cult of "form," the fact
     that it is the almost exclusive monopoly of the rich, the
     aristocracy and the upper middle-class; above all, its contempt
     for the learning of modern times and studied disregard of modern
     languages--all these features help to make the 'Varsity as
     insular as the most insular of all English national institutions.
     On the other hand, by its genuine intellectuality, by its cult of
     the beautiful and the abstract, by its scorn of the sordid
     business side of modern civilisation, by its enthusiasm for
     athletics and by its traditions of duty and of patriotism, the
     'Varsity remains, to my mind, one of the most healthful
     influences in modern British life.

     Talking of English insularity, it is curious to note how the
     Englishman makes his progress abroad. He is so insular that
     instead of learning the language and adopting the customs of the
     country he is in, he makes the indigenous population adopt his!
     He does not, for example, know much French, but he has evolved a
     sort of patois--much nearer English than French--that enables the
     inhabitants to understand him and comprehend what he wants.

     I have recently been reading another of John Buchan's, called
     "Greenmantle." If you haven't read it, get it. It is just as good
     as Buchan's other books, rich in mystery and scintillating with
     adventure. It deals with this War and the experiences of Richard
     Hannay (whom you will recollect as the hero of the "Thirty-nine
     Steps," and who has since become a Major and got wounded at Loos)
     in his efforts, eventually crowned with success, to crush a
     German plot--this plot being the working up of a "Jehad," or Holy
     War among the Mohammedans, and so provoking a rising of Islam
     against the British. A thoroughly live story, told with great
     spirit.

     I have also read H. G. Wells's war novel, "Mr. Britling Sees It
     Through." It is undeniably clever, though not to my mind up to
     the level of Wells's very best. It rather gives the impression in
     parts of having been written by the mile and then lengths cut off
     as required. He has one very good touch, the realisation of the
     impersonal and indiscriminate nature of the War: it claims as
     victims both Mr. Britling's own son and the young German who had
     been living with them before the War. The book concludes with a
     letter from Britling to the German boy's father, attempting to
     find some way out of the blackness. As usual with Wells, the best
     feature of the novel is the way in which he expresses the point
     of view of the average man. He has the trick of recording
     reflections in a sort of staccato style, with gaps here and
     there--just the way that one does think. There is some rot in the
     book, but on the whole it is very good and well worth reading.

     Recently I have been attending a Veterinary Course--lectures and
     practical demonstration; most fascinating it is, I can assure
     you.


WITH THE TANK CORPS

On February 13, 1917, Paul Jones joined the M.G.C.H.B., in other words
the Tank Corps. His joy at this transfer was unbounded. Nothing could
be in sharper contrast than the letters he wrote after joining the
Tank Corps and those penned during the preceding three months, when
the enforced inactivity of the cavalry and the nature of his own
routine work preyed on his spirits and made him exclaim with Ulysses:

  How dull it is to pause, to make an end,
  To rust unburnish'd, not to shine in use,
  As though to breathe were Life!

                                           _February 13th, 1917._

     When I came in from my morning's work yesterday what should I
     find but a telegram instructing me to report at the earliest
     possible moment to Headquarters, Heavy M.G.C., for duty on
     transfer! These things usually come with a rush after one has
     been kept waiting a long time in suspense. I spent the rest of
     the day in bringing my accounts and papers up to date, and this
     morning came across in the motor to my destination. Is it not
     splendid? My luck has never yet failed to stand me in good stead.
     I won't deny, nevertheless, that it was a severe wrench parting
     from the old Cavalry Division after twenty months of service with
     it. I had formed many friendships there, among both officers and
     men, and it cost me many a pang to bid them good-bye. All
     partings from old associations are hard to bear even when the
     parting leads up, as in my case, to the fulfilment of one's
     greatest ambition. My delight knows no bounds at my new
     appointment. I really am asking myself whether I am awake or not.
     It almost seems too good to be true.

     I am writing this letter in my new mess which is in a Neissen
     hut. For the present I remain Lieutenant A.S.C.--till the period
     of probation is past. But that's no matter, for the acme of my
     military ambitions is now attained. My new messmates are almost
     all ex-infantry men, many of whom, most in fact, are here
     learning their new job. Strangely enough, I am the third Senior
     Lieutenant in the company, and in point of active service, with
     my twenty months in France, I stand well in front of almost all
     of them. The O.C. of the company, stroke of good luck for me, is
     an old Hussar officer and ex-member of the Cavalry Brigade which
     I have just quitted. It was a joy to meet him again. I was able
     to give him a lot of news about his old pals.

     All the fellows in the new mess are amazed that I have been
     without leave since the beginning of May, 1916. I must not set my
     leave before my work, however. I have already started my new
     labours. Altogether I am in luck all round. I verily believe I am
     the luckiest man in the B.E.F. to-day. Congratulate me! You will
     be interested to know that an old Dulwich boy, Ambrose, to whom I
     gave 2nd XV Colours in my year of football captaincy, is in the
     same battalion, but I have not met him yet.


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                           _February 17th, 1917._

     I am getting on splendidly. I can't tell you how bucked I am with
     life. It was my third shot to get out of the "great Department,"
     and not only did I succeed in this, but I have obtained that
     which I had most desired. I had really hardly dared to hope that
     I should succeed in getting into the Tank Corps. There are a lot
     of Rugger men among the officers here, including an O.A.,
     Ambrose, who was one of the best of the 2nd XV forwards in 1914.
     In our company is a splendid fellow called Hedderwick, who played
     for Loretto and was tried for Cambridge; and a man called
     Saillard, who was the Haileybury full-back in that match when
     they beat us at Haileybury by 32 to 12 in Evans's year. You may
     recollect Saillard getting laid out in the second half,
     Haileybury continuing without a full-back--with very sound
     judgment as it turned out, for this enabled them to play us off
     our legs in the scrum and control the game with eight forwards to
     seven, and we never got the ball to give to our eight outsides.
     To sum up, I am in most congenial society and enjoying life
     hugely.

     Naturally, I am working pretty hard, learning my new job. I am
     determined to make good at it, and I have the conviction that,
     with hard work and concentration, a man with education behind him
     can succeed in pretty well anything that he likes. Leave may come
     in the near future, provided the authorities consider I have made
     sufficient progress in my new studies; but I have a lot to learn,
     and it is not my desire to go on leave before I have mastered at
     least the elements of my new job--very much the reverse, in fact.


                                           _February 20th, 1917._

     Am having a grand time--up to my eyes in oil, grease and mud from
     8 A.M. to 5 P.M. I am finding my old hobby of engineering of the
     greatest value, and my enthusiasm for seeing "the wheels go
     round" has returned in all its old force. Even the gas-engine and
     dynamo of famous (or infamous) memory are proving most
     serviceable to me through the experience I acquired with
     them--demonstrating again how useful the most _recherché_ of
     ideas, occupations or hobbies may become. No knowledge is to be
     despised.

     The only fly in the ointment is that an exam. is due for me in a
     week's time or so--as you know, impending exams. fill me with
     terror. I have such an accursedly active imagination that I find
     it impossible to banish from my head the thought, "What if I
     fail?" I've always been afflicted with this, though I am bound to
     say that when it came to the point it did not, as far as might be
     judged by results, affect my actual performances. But I am,
     nevertheless, in a chronic state of what the B.E.F. calls "wind
     up" on account of this exam. I am so eager to do well that the
     mere thought of failing is abhorrent. I am inclined to ascribe
     these feelings at bottom to egotism.

     There is quite a number of South Welshmen in our lot out here,
     including some men from Llanelly. There are also a lot of
     Scotsmen among the officers, fellows of broad speech and dry
     humour to whom I am much drawn.

     You haven't hit on a book on some musical subject for me, have
     you? I would much like a work dealing with Wagner or Beethoven.
     It is music that I miss more than anything in the intellectual
     line. Shall we ever hear the "Ring" again, I wonder? Anyway, it
     was one of the supreme experiences of my life to have heard it
     conducted by Nikisch. I regard the "Ring" as one of the world's
     artistic masterpieces. It is conceived on a scale of unparalleled
     grandeur, and must be thought of as an organised whole.

     I miss the "Proms" and the Sunday Concerts, too--both have done a
     real national service in popularising the greatest music.


                                           _February 28th, 1917._

     In the language of Tommy, I am "in the pink" and getting on
     first-rate. Am delighted to say I passed well in that
     examination, being marked "very good indeed." I got more than 90
     per cent. of marks. I never dared to hope for such success. It
     would be absurd to deny that I am hugely bucked at the result,
     but I had had a pretty strenuous training for the exam. I am
     still engaged in learning, but now in a different department,
     though of equal interest, and I am glad to say that no
     examination is involved this time.

     Last Sunday we had a real first-rate game of Rugger--not very
     scientific as far as passing and outside play were concerned, but
     a great struggle forward. My own side had a couple of splendid
     Scottish forwards against it, and I had a great deal of defence
     to do, falling on the ball, etc. The final was 6-3 against us,
     but one glaring offside try was allowed to our
     opponents--accidentally, of course, as the referee's view was
     unfortunately obstructed at the time. It was a grand game to play
     in, though I was not in the best of training--one's first game
     for fourteen months is usually apt to be a bit of a strain, and I
     hadn't played since I turned out for the O.A.'s at Dulwich in
     December, 1915. It was simply great, worth living years for, to
     touch a Rugger ball again.


                                              _March 17th, 1917._

     These days for me are crammed full of work, 8.30 A.M. to 6 or 7
     P.M. as a general rule. I am enjoying life hugely, however. To me
     hard work has always been preferable to slack times, and I like
     going at high pressure. Besides, this is such a grand job that
     the work is a sheer pleasure. By Jove! if you only knew how much
     happier I am these days than in any period during the twenty odd
     months I had spent previously playing at soldiers in the "Grub
     Department." It amazes me that I could have been so long
     contented with work like that of the A.S.C. Well, anyway, those
     days are over and done with, and a new and brighter era has been
     ushered in. As a rule, I am now almost always in an incredible
     state of grease and oil and grime, which, remembering my old
     propensities, you will know delights me. The old gas-engine at
     home was nothing to it. I have had to set aside a special suit
     for daily use, as even with overalls on there is not sufficient
     protection against grease, oil, petrol and mud. I cannot tell you
     how supremely happy I am in my work.

     Ambrose returned to his company from a course of instruction last
     week, and he came across immediately to see me. We discussed old
     times and old friends with great gusto. There are two other
     Dulwich men in the battalion whom I never knew well, as they were
     fairly senior fellows when I was only a kid, though I distinctly
     remember both. Their names are Trimingham and Sewell. They were
     in what was in those days Treadgold's House.

     I am sending back by the same post a pair of spectacles which got
     broken recently. Will you please get them repaired? I still have
     four sound pairs, but I always like to keep up the set of five
     with which I started in the War.

     The breaking of the great frost created appalling conditions on
     this countryside, which for some time was an absolute quagmire.
     Even now things are pretty bad, though the weather improves
     daily.


                                              _March 20th, 1917._

     Well, the Boche has retreated on the Somme, as most people
     anticipated he would, though few imagined he would make such a
     considerable withdrawal. He is a cute customer, of that there is
     no doubt. He never does a thing without having a reason. Yet
     there have been occasions in the War when he has entirely
     misjudged the situation. Take Ypres and Verdun for example. This
     retirement on the Somme is clever, though it may tell on the
     morale of his men. On the other hand, the Boche relies, and
     always has relied, much more on discipline than on morale for
     keeping his army together. He has never developed _esprit de
     corps_ as it has been developed in our army, or the French, but
     there's no denying that his discipline is something pretty
     considerable. That discipline, as far as can be gauged, has as
     its foundation a very efficient system of N.C.O.'s. His officers
     are intelligent, but nothing to write home about, but his
     N.C.O.'s are unquestionably very good. I have myself witnessed
     their influence among gangs of prisoners we have taken.

     It must necessarily come about in the course of a War that
     situations arise when _esprit de corps_ is equivalent to, and
     even produces, discipline. That is where brother Boche fails to
     rise to the occasion. I am not of those who think the Boche a
     coward, but undoubtedly an unexpected situation very often plays
     the very deuce with both his courage and his organisation. In his
     plans he allows for most possibilities, but he is nonplussed when
     the situation does not turn out exactly as it should on paper.
     Again, man for man, he loses "guts" in tight corners, because of
     this same lack of initiative. It is perhaps a temperamental
     failing. There have been moments in this War when only his
     incapacity to deal with a suddenly-developed situation has stood
     between him and stupendous success. He has assumed, let us say,
     that by all the rules of War the enemy must have reserves
     available, and has therefore ceased his attack until such time as
     he could muster his forces to meet the counter-attack by these
     imagined reserve troops, when actually his enemy had no reserves
     at all. Conversely, he has assumed on many occasions that his
     enemy must, by all the rules of War, be battered into pulp or
     asphyxiated, and that he has only to advance over the bodies of
     his foes to win an overwhelming victory; yet somehow or other
     from out of the indescribable débris and havoc wrought by his
     artillery or gas, arise survivors who, though half-dead, yet have
     enough life and pluck to hold him back.

     Take as illustrations either the second battle of Ypres or
     Verdun. In the first case, after the first surprise gas attack a
     rent about a mile and a half wide had been torn in the Allied
     line. Against a vast number of German troops there was opposed
     only one single division of what Bernhardi contemptuously termed
     "Colonial Militia," namely, the Canadians. For quite a long time
     there were no other troops of ours (save a few oddments) in the
     vicinity. The Boche had five miles or so to get to "Wipers." Of
     these he covered just about two, and even that ground was only
     what he gained in the first surprise of his gas attack. Between
     him and the Channel coast there still stretched a khaki line. The
     same sort of situation was repeated several times during the
     second battle of Ypres (though the odds were never so great as in
     these first April days), yet the result was always the same.

     Take Verdun again. For me this prolonged battle has a strange
     fascination. There is something more terrible and primitive about
     it than about any other struggle of the War. It was a sort of
     death-grip between two antagonistic military conceptions.

     (_The remainder of this letter never came to hand._)


                                              _March 31st, 1917._

     It must be a singular experience for our troops on the Somme to
     miss enemy artillery fire, trench mortars, grenades, etc., from
     the scheme of things. What a huge relief to the Infantry to have
     a pause from the eternal "Whew-w-w-w-Crash" of the high
     explosives! I fear, nevertheless, that the British infantrymen
     will soon resume acquaintance with them, for the War isn't over
     by a long chalk yet. Meanwhile, however, the sight of an at
     present comparatively unblemished countryside must be a great joy
     to men sick of the howling wilderness created on the ground that
     has been contended for since July, 1916. I know those Somme
     battlefields--every square yard of soil honeycombed with
     shell-holes, all traces of verdure vanished, trees reduced to
     withered skeletons, blasted forests, fragments of houses, with
     the poor human dead rotting all around. Verily a nightmare
     country.

     You may have remarked in the last _Alleynian_ a poem called the
     "Infantryman," by Captain E. F. Clarke. It appeared first in
     _Punch_ some time ago and has had a great vogue. When I read it
     first, before I knew who the author was, I was greatly taken with
     this poem. I now see from _The Alleynian_ that it is the work of
     an O.A., a chap whom I held in high regard, namely, Eric Clarke,
     whom you cannot fail to remember as King Richard II in the
     Founder's Day Play, 1913--his superb acting in that rôle was
     greatly admired. It was he who was to a large extent responsible
     for my undertaking the editorship of _The Alleynian_. He was my
     immediate predecessor in the job.

     The poem appeals powerfully to me. To use the words of a Canadian
     poet, R. W. Service, "it hits me right." It has a swing about it,
     it has ideas, it has atmosphere. Pervading it through and through
     is the atmosphere of this Western Front. I have often told you
     that I had yet to meet the man who could convey that atmosphere
     in story, book or article. Clarke's poem (along with
     Bairnsfather's pictures) is one of the very first pieces I have
     read that really gets this atmosphere. The verse is not
     particularly polished, but it has life and force. Its simplicity
     adds to its effectiveness. Such an expression as "the sodden
     khaki's stench" lives in the memory, for it appeals directly to
     the soldier's recollection of his experiences--that odour the
     infantryman must have noticed dozens of times in the wet dawn,
     when he was waiting to go "over the top." Clarke has undoubtedly
     made a name for himself by the poem. Decidedly he has lived up to
     the high reputation he had at school. It looks as if he will make
     a name in literature. [See p. 240, text and footnote].

     These days I am tremendously busy and revelling in it, as the
     work is so completely congenial. I am muddier and greasier than
     at any other period of my existence, and gloriously happy withal.

     A corporal in our Company lives in the Herne Hill district, and
     in civil life was a tram conductor for the L.C.C. on the Norwood
     section. He has been out here two years, and won the Military
     Medal for gallantry on the Somme. Very interesting to meet one of
     the "dim millions" from one's own neighbourhood in this fashion,
     _n'est ce pas_?

In April Paul Jones, as a Tank Officer, took part in the battle of
Arras.

                                              _April 24th, 1917._

     I am splendidly well and enjoying life hugely. If my letters for
     the past three weeks have been few and far between, you must put
     it down to War activities. It would be ridiculous to try to
     conceal the fact that my movements of late have, to a certain
     extent, been connected with the great "stunt" now in progress.
     For me the past three weeks or so have been a period full of
     incident and rich in variety--quite and by far the best period
     of my life up to date. There have been certain rotten incidents
     that have worried me at times; but, on the whole, I have been far
     happier during that period than at any other time since joining
     the Army. Thank goodness! I shall at length be able to hold up my
     head among other Dulwich men and not be forced to admit with
     shame that in this War I only played a safe, comfortable,
     luxurious part in the A.S.C. No! those wretched days are over and
     done with. Even now, I have a far easier time than thousands of
     fellows in the Infantry.

     I have referred to certain rotten incidents. The worst of these
     was the death in action of one of my best friends in the Company.
     This chap was a young Scotsman named Tarbet. We had been thrown
     very much together and became warm friends. On April 9 Tarbet was
     killed by a sniper about 11 A.M. while out in the open
     reconnoitring the approach to the Boche second line. I came along
     to relieve him an hour later, and practically fell over his dead
     body--a very bad moment, I assure you. Another of our section
     officers was wounded in the face about the same time by shrapnel.
     I myself had rather a close shave, as I was alongside another man
     at the time he was hit in the head by a shrapnel bullet. I
     scarcely realised the explosion until I saw the poor fellow
     wounded.

     On the whole, that day was an absolute picnic. The only trouble
     was that the Boche ran back too fast in our particular sector for
     us to inflict all the damage on him that we would have liked to
     have done. Such, however, has not been the case everywhere since.
     He is fighting desperately hard now.

     Two more O.A.'s killed in action--Gerald Gill[16] and Eric
     Clarke.[17] Gill took his colours in cricket, gym, and football.
     His impersonation of M. Perrichon in the French play on Founder's
     Day, 1913, was very clever and entertaining. I am also much
     grieved at Clarke's death. He was shaping for a brilliant career.
     It's just awful this sacrifice of the best of our young men.

         [Footnote 16: Lieutenant W. G. O. Gill. Born, May 26th, 1895.
         Killed in Palestine, March 27th, 1917. He was in the cricket
         XI, 1913, football XV, 1913-14, and in the gymnasium XI,
         1912-13.]

         [Footnote 17: Captain E. F. Clarke. Born, April 1st, 1894.
         Killed, April 9th, 1917. Editor of _The Alleynian_,
         1911-12-13. Went up to Oxford in 1913 with a classical
         scholarship at Corpus Christi College.]


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                              _April 29th, 1917._

     Circumstances are making my letter-writing increasingly
     difficult. It is rather a case of "but that I am forbid I could a
     tale unfold," etc. I suppose holidays are on just now. I want to
     tell you that I am confidently looking forward to your winning a
     great success in the forthcoming Matriculation. By Jove! it
     doesn't seem such a long time since I was in for that exam.
     myself. In my day we were able to take it at the school, now I
     believe you have to go up to London University. _Eheu fugaces!_

     The more I see of life the more convinced I am of the greatness
     of the old school. Wherever you meet a Dulwich man out here,
     you'll find he bears a reputation for gallantry, for character,
     for hard work and for what may be termed "the public-school
     spirit" in its best form. Our Roll of Honour and the literally
     amazing list of decorations bear this out. Of my own old
     colleagues, there is not one who has not either been hit (alas!
     killed in many cases) or received some decoration, or both; and
     that, mark you, though we are not what is known as an "Army
     School" like Eton, Cheltenham, or Wellington. Ambrose, the O.A.
     in our battalion, has recently accomplished some wonderful
     things, and is sure to receive a high decoration. Yet one more
     up for the school!

     Did you see that Scottie is now an Acting-Lieutenant-Colonel,
     with a D.S.O. and the M.C.? That is _some_ achievement, if you
     like! C. N. Lowe, the famous footballer, has been wounded. He had
     transferred to the Flying Corps out of the A.S.C. Doherty, who
     used also to be in the "Grub Department," has now got a Company
     in the Infantry. You see, it isn't in the nature of a Dulwich man
     to be leading a life of ease when other men are fighting.

     I have been having a great time of late. Work of surpassing
     interest, a certain amount of excitement, and a knowledge that
     one was more or less directly participating in the winning of the
     War--what more can the heart of man desire? If only poor old
     Tarbet hadn't been killed--he was a dear pal of mine,--there
     wouldn't be a cloud on the horizon. Don't let the Mater and Pater
     get the wind up about my personal safety. At present I am quite
     safe; besides, I have wonderful luck. I was only saved by a
     miracle from being blown into the air last September on the
     Somme. I may get home on leave in the near future.


                                                 _May 4th, 1917._

     I rejoice to say that Ambrose has received the D.S.O. for that
     achievement referred to in my last letter. He more than deserves
     it. He had a most terrible experience. The D.S.O. for a subaltern
     is one of the very highest honours that the Army has to bestow.
     We are all very bucked about it, especially the O.A. section of
     the battalion.

     How anomalous the War has become--the world's great Land Power
     striving to strike its decisive blow at sea, while the great Sea
     Power is endeavouring to strike its decisive blow on land! This
     double paradox will give much food for reflection to future
     historians. I am coming to the conclusion that without a complete
     knowledge of the facts it is well-nigh impossible to derive
     accurate deductions from History. It seems to me you can make
     History prove anything. To understand History in all its
     significance, one must be familiar also with literature,
     languages and science.

     Talking of science, do you see that some modern scientists are
     throwing doubt on the original theory of Evolution? They admit
     the possibility of the modification of species through natural
     selection, but they dispute the theory that any broad change
     takes place in the genera of organisms. They do not even admit
     the possibility of the atrophy, through long disuse, of organs of
     which the animal no longer has need. They are forced to admit
     that many species and genera have become extinct--so much is
     proved by the skeletons of prehistoric beasts found from time to
     time under the earth's surface. But what they dispute is that
     there is any connection between those beasts and living animals.
     They say, for instance, that as far back as we have records, we
     find the horse practically the same, organically speaking, as he
     is to-day. They cast doubt, that is, on the theory that the horse
     is descended from the pterodactyl.

     It is an interesting point, though there appears to be no
     _essential_ difference between this new school and the
     thoroughgoing evolutionists; for both admit the principle of the
     survival of the fittest. To me the new school's conception seems
     to be grotesque. According to them, the world was originally full
     of an enormous number of animals, organisms and what not, of
     which some have up to date survived, and whose numbers will
     decrease until only a few certain types, or perhaps one certain
     type, will be left subsisting. That is a view that I cannot
     accept. But, of course, Nature has many checks on the
     propagation and the multiplication of species. Natural conditions
     do not permit of the existence of too many species or
     sub-species. But it is clear that there are types, call them
     genera, species, or what you will, that have, by virtue of some
     inherent fitness and flexibility of adaptation, survived and
     mastered other types.

     The theory or principle of Natural Selection can also be applied
     to nations. As far back as we have any record, man was much the
     same sort of being as he is to-day. The genus, in fact, has not
     changed. It is now established that in the long distant past
     there was one great Aryan race in Central Asia, which has split
     up since then into the peoples and nations of modern Europe,
     India, Arabia, and so forth. Biologically speaking, these peoples
     have all some traits in common, but environment has wrought great
     changes and has created species. Between these species there are
     great differences, so great indeed that various of them are
     to-day engaged in a good old intertribal war.

     But has the genus Man always borne the same sort of
     characteristics as those that distinguish him to-day? Or, on the
     other hand, is he descended from a kangaroo-rat through the long
     lineage of the pithecanthropus, the ape-man, the man-ape, and so
     forth? And why stop at the kangaroo-rat--the first mammal to
     bring forth its young alive? Why not continue his lineage right
     back to the original bi-cellular organism--protoplasm? If these
     are our humble beginnings, what a progression to Man, so "noble
     in reason, infinite in faculty"!

     Speculations about the development of life are very fascinating.
     I hold very strongly to belief in the survival of the fittest.
     Accepting this theory, you can explain most of the apparent
     inconsistencies that exist in the world. But I must admit that
     there is at least a possibility that genera are not changed by
     environment, time or circumstances. Perhaps they exist until they
     become unfit, when they vanish. The genus may remain in existence
     as a permanency till it ceases to become fit to survive, but the
     species most certainly alters. The only point in dispute is,
     therefore: do genera become altered by environment, etc.? Or do
     they exist unaltered till they become unfit, when they just
     vanish from this sublunary scene? However this may be, the broad
     principle of natural selection seems to me to be unshakably
     established.


                                                _May 20th, 1917._

     I was absolutely taken aback by the news of Felix Cohn's[18]
     death. It seems almost incredible to me, even at this moment. It
     was only a few days ago that we met out here. He had then been
     "over the top" and was in high spirits. He was a sincere fellow
     and played his part like a man. I do take off my hat to the
     Infantry. No one in England realises what we all owe to them;
     marvellous men they are. How they endure what they do, Heaven
     only knows. If you see Mr. Cohn, please express to him my deepest
     sympathy, or rather, send me his address and I will write to him.

         [Footnote 18: Second Lieutenant Felix A. Cohn, East Surrey
         Regiment. Born, August 31st, 1896. Killed, May 3rd, 1917. Was
         in the Modern Sixth at Dulwich with Paul Jones. Son of Mr.
         August Cohn, barrister.]

     We of the Tank Corps are having a pleasant and peaceful time in
     billets these days. Nature hereabouts is beginning to put on her
     best dress. It is _some_ contrast between the vivid green foliage
     that one sees about here and the blasted trees and
     shell-shattered areas of the fighting zone. Only one thing
     indicating the living force of nature did I remark in that dreary
     countryside. This was the piping of a few birds now and again in
     the most unlikely places. Bar that, the battle zone is a blasted
     area, where the only difference between the seasons is noted by a
     change of temperature and the transformation of mud into dust.
     Meanwhile, I am having a very good time in billets; but I am
     looking forward eagerly to a real scrap with the Boche.

     Thanks so much for the "Perfect Wagnerite." It is a treat to read
     about the "Ring" once more. I would give much to be able to hear
     it again.


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                                _May 25th, 1917._

     Just a line to wish you the best of luck in the Matric, and to
     express the hope that you will do really well. Put in all the
     work you can right up to within twenty-four hours of the start of
     the exam. and then take one day right off duty altogether. I am
     certain you will do us all infinite credit.

     As to the Pater's remark that my recent letters have lacked
     detail, this is mainly due to the Censorship regulations, which I
     personally like to observe in the spirit as well as in the
     letter. Besides, a careless remark may be misconstrued, and it is
     difficult to say one thing without disclosing others that ought
     not to be revealed. Then there is the other consideration, that
     if I write fully you may perhaps get the "wind up" about my
     personal safety.

     As regards photographs of myself, the regulations as to the
     possession of cameras are very stringent, and I really haven't
     the time or the inclination to go and get snapped by a civilian
     photographer out here. Again, _entre nous_, I regard photographs
     as trivialities--above all, those abominations "photos from the
     Front." A man who is really at the Front has neither time nor
     occasion to have photographs taken. No, if we must worry, let us
     worry first about the things that _do_ matter.

     I am frightfully sorry about the death of Felix Cohn. He was very
     cheerful when I saw him. We met twice in a certain large town
     which has of late figured prominently in the communiqués. Our
     talk was of Dulwich, the cases of Roederwald and Gropius, of
     Wagner and music; and, of course, of the War itself. He had then
     been "over the top" once, on the same day that I was. Felix said
     that he had had an easy time, as his lot took about seven lines
     of trenches in an hour. He had done considerable work as a
     translator of German documents and in the examination of captured
     Germans. I feel sincere sympathy for Mr. Cohn, but there is
     little use in words of condolence in the case of such tragedies.
     It is the price of the game.

     To a large extent, the Pater's deductions about the work in Tanks
     on hot days are correct. Still, you can wear practically what you
     like when on duty, so one works in a shirt, shorts, puttees and
     boots. Although we are for the time being out of the battle line,
     I am really very busy; there is no slacking in the H.B.M.G.C.;
     but I am enjoying life hugely.

     I manage to get a good deal of bathing these days, as there is a
     beautiful little river about a stone's throw away from our
     billets. By the way, I hope you are continuing as keen as ever on
     your swimming. As to leave, it has again vanished into the limbo
     of futurity. I am not particularly sorry. Leave is such a
     fleeting joy. Just as one is beginning to get into the way of
     things at home one has to go back again to the Front. I would
     much prefer to get the War completely over than get leave. After
     all, in my present job I am not worried by monotony, and I find
     the work of absorbing interest. Moreover, I have many friends in
     this battalion, and, above all, in our own Company, which
     contains some really splendid fellows. What I miss most is music.


                                               _June 10th, 1917._

     There are few opportunities of writing, and the busy period is
     likely to last for a space, so I fear my correspondence for some
     time to come will be but scanty. Our northern push has been a
     first-rate success. The simultaneous explosion of those mines on
     the Messines Ridge must have created a terrific din, though I
     myself never heard a sound, being at the time wrapped in the
     sleep of the just.

     I do hope things are going well in the old school, but I fear
     that in existing conditions it is a difficult period for all
     public schools. Owing to the War, boys leave so much younger now,
     and you do not have fellows of eighteen and nineteen to set the
     tone; and at that age they have unquestionably a far greater
     sense of responsibility than at sixteen or seventeen, or, I
     imagine, in the first years at the 'Varsity after leaving school.
     Ian Hay says somewhere that a senior boy at a public school is a
     far more serious and responsible being than an undergraduate. As
     there are no senior boys, it is more than ever incumbent upon the
     masters to keep up the _esprit de corps_ of the school, and to
     help maintain the old standards in work and games.

     Talking of masters, I much liked that poem entitled the
     "House-Master" in a recent number of _Punch_. It is just the case
     of Kittermaster, Nightingale, or Scottie, isn't it? I pray and
     trust that Dulwich in these difficult days will maintain its fine
     traditions. The welfare of the school is a very precious thing to
     me. I am inclined to think that my own six and a half years
     (1908-15) at Dulwich were about the time of its Augustan era.
     Among other things, this period included the year of the two
     Balliol scholars, the year of the crack "footer" team that never
     lost a match, and it was marked by a consistent average of
     first-class XV's throughout. It produced five "blues" and
     internationals, and would have produced many other "blues," and
     perhaps internationals, had it not been for the War--Evans, for
     example, as half-back, and Franklin or either of the Gilligans as
     three-quarters. It was also the period of A. E. R. Gilligan,
     unquestionably the finest all-round public-school athlete of the
     past decade; the period of the gymnastic records; of the sports
     records; with a consistent average of scholarships and other
     educational distinctions, such as Reynolds's B.A., direct from
     the school. Finally, this period was marked by a general spirit
     of keenness and industry, both in work and games, throughout the
     school. It was truly a glorious time. Oh, to have it all over
     again!


                                               _June 18th, 1917._

     For over three weeks we have been working at exceptionally high
     pressure. Chief interest now centres in Flanders. Our branch did
     wonderfully well there, though the Boche apparently didn't offer
     serious resistance anywhere. I was inexpressibly shocked to hear
     of the death of that chivalrous Irishman, Willie Redmond. The
     fact that he was carried off the battlefield in an Ulster
     ambulance was a most touching episode, and should go far to
     reconcile the mutually antagonistic Irish parties. Such an
     incident is one of the compensations of War--few enough though
     they may be, Heaven knows! As it drags on, the War is becoming
     more and more mechanical. It is now like one enormous engine,
     with multitudinous cogwheels, each of which plays its part.


                                                _July 4th, 1917._

     Looking at the Casualty Lists recording the death of so many
     brave men, and thinking of the grief in the homes, one feels that
     this War lies heavy on the world like a black horror. And yet I
     find myself ever more irresistibly (albeit wholly against my will
     and wishes) forced to the conclusion that War is a part of the
     order of things. Did you read the Russian Socialists' manifesto
     on the War? While, on the one hand, they ascribed responsibility
     for it to the capitalist classes in the warring countries, yet
     they admitted that Russia's withdrawal from the War would put the
     Boche section of capitalists in an advantageous position, and so
     decided to continue it. In other words, they admit that Democracy
     is powerless to avert War.

     To my thinking, all History is made up of a series of movements
     like the swinging of a pendulum, from democracy (often via
     oligarchy) to imperialism, and from imperialism back to
     democracy. It seems to me that there is only one effective method
     of ensuring world-peace. It was the method of the Romans, by
     which one nation having fought its way to a position of
     undisputed and indisputable supremacy, imposed its will on the
     other nations of the world, and established the "Pax Romana."
     Similar efforts made by great men have proved a disastrous
     failure in the long run, though after meeting with temporary
     success. Rome's universal dominion did not endure long, and
     Napoleon's domination of the Continent was very brief. England
     seems to have almost succeeded up to date in her attempt to
     establish a "Pax Romana," for she gave order and peace to a large
     part of the world. England builded better than she knew, for many
     of the wise things she did were done under protest and from her
     devotion to the _laissez-faire_ system. But this stupendous
     conflict shows that the "Pax Britannica" has not succeeded in
     averting wars.

     I have heard it maintained that Karl Marx's theory is the
     solution of the question, namely, to ignore national boundaries
     and establish what he called "class-consciousness" among the
     wage-earners of the world. That is to say, Marx proposed to
     replace national consciousness--viz., the family, race or tribal
     consciousness that exists under the name of patriotism--by
     class-consciousness--viz., the consciousness of the workers in
     all countries that their interests are identical, the idea being
     that with the realisation of the unity of the workers wars would
     cease. To this theory there are, it seems to me, two fatal
     objections: (1) Even if this class-consciousness, or
     international solidarity of the workers, could be brought about,
     yet you would soon have the old division into capital and labour
     growing up again, through the ordinary laws of natural selection
     and because of the unequal capacity of different men to make
     their way in the world. (2) To my mind, the tribal instinct is
     much too strong to give way to a class-consciousness that ignores
     national boundaries and national rivalries.

     Broadly speaking, the division of the world into nations is a
     natural division; and recent research all goes to confirm the
     theory that man never has "made good" as an individual. He begins
     his existence as a member of a family and of an association of
     families--thrown together (_a_) by kinship of blood or likeness
     of type; (_b_) by environment; (_c_) by chance or circumstance
     (as a rule for the purpose of self-protection). It is these
     enlarged families that are what we call to-day nations. I cannot
     see that it would be possible to replace the great and, on the
     whole, ennobling sentiment of patriotism by a broad international
     trades-unionism, which is practically what Marx proposes. And
     given the world as it is and animal and human nature what they
     are, I don't see how to prevent the interests of nations
     clashing. Ethically speaking, the trouble is that existence is a
     selfish thing. Stamp out competition--which, when you think of
     it, is not very far removed from war on a small scale--and
     experience shows that you stamp out the incentive to work and to
     progress. It is a melancholy conclusion to come to, but it's
     better to look facts in the face than to shirk them.

     I had the experience the other day of visiting a portion of the
     country where the old battle front used to be, for two and a half
     years, before the Boches withdrew to their Hindenburg line. This
     section of ground is miles from the present front line, in fact
     you can only hear the guns rumbling in the distance. This whole
     countryside is a ruined waste--villages destroyed, weeds
     overgrowing everything; and no inhabitants except troops. It was
     strange to walk over the old trench systems and the broad green
     band between them (still thickly strewn with barbed wire) that
     used to be No Man's Land. One thought of the Englishmen,
     Frenchmen and Germans who sat for so long in those trenches,
     peering at each other furtively from time to time, each doing all
     he could to kill the enemy, and from time to time raiding one
     another's lines. I examined the deep, well-ordered Boche
     trenches. All dug-outs and practically everything of military
     value they had destroyed prior to their departure, but a few
     concrete and steel emplacements and snipers' posts still
     remained--beautifully made and all in commanding positions. The
     destruction of the villages, farms and lands by the Germans on
     their retirement was absolutely systematic--not a house or a
     structure of any kind left standing. This area depressed one much
     more than the ordinary zone near the lines, because it was all so
     deathly empty and so weirdly silent, like the ghost of some
     prehistoric world. Up in the battle line you have at any rate
     life and activity--but here nothing at all, simply destruction
     and a silent desert. I noticed in this area a French Military
     Cemetery with names dating back to 1914!

     I am keeping splendidly well and am absolutely happy. By far the
     happiest time of my life since leaving school has been the past
     six months. My brother officers are a grand lot of fellows. Our
     own section of the Company is commanded by a young captain with
     the M.C., who has spent most of his life in the Colonies--a
     first-rate man he is. There are four other officers besides
     myself, all of them splendid comrades, especially one who was
     along with me in the old days back in April and whom I am proud
     to consider a bosom pal--a little Irishman, called O'Connor. He
     and I and poor old Jock Tarbet had always been the greatest of
     friends since my arrival in the Company. Alas! there are now only
     two of us left.


     TO HIS BROTHER.

                                               _July 27th, 1917._

     I was charmed to get a letter from you to-day and to hear that
     things are progressing so well. It certainly was bad luck for you
     in the diving competition. However, better luck next time! I was
     delighted to get the _Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News_
     with the photographs of the Dulwich College O.T.C. How it does
     warm my heart to see even a photograph of the old College and its
     surroundings! I note that, barring Scottie and poor Kitter, there
     isn't much change in the officers of the Corps. What excellent
     fellows they are! Give my love to them all.

     Many thanks for the last parcel containing among many acceptable
     things a Gaboriau detective novel. I was very anxious to read
     this and compare it with good old Sherlock Holmes, whom I still
     worship as much as ever.

     I have just completed two full continuous years of service in
     this country. Well, cheer-oh, old boy! Best luck and much love to
     you all!

     _P.S._--Have you ever reflected on the fact that, despite the
     horrors of the war, it is at least a big thing? I mean to say
     that in it one is brought face to face with realities. The
     follies, selfishness, luxury and general pettiness of the vile
     commercial sort of existence led by nine-tenths of the people of
     the world in peace-time are replaced in war by a savagery that is
     at least more honest and outspoken. Look at it this way: in
     peace-time one just lives one's own little life, engaged in
     trivialities, worrying about one's own comfort, about money
     matters, and all that sort of thing--just living for one's own
     self. What a sordid life it is! In war, on the other hand, even
     if you do get killed you only anticipate the inevitable by a few
     years in any case, and you have the satisfaction of knowing that
     you have "pegged out" in the attempt to help your country. You
     have, in fact, realised an ideal, which, as far as I can see, you
     very rarely do in ordinary life. The reason is that ordinary life
     runs on a commercial and selfish basis; if you want to "get on,"
     as the saying is, you can't keep your hands clean.

     Personally, I often rejoice that the War has come my way. It has
     made me realise what a petty thing life is. I think that the War
     has given to everyone a chance to "get out of himself," as I
     might say. Of course, the other side of the picture is bound to
     occur to the imagination. But there! I have never been one to
     take the more melancholy point of view when there's a silver
     lining in the cloud.

     Certainly, speaking for myself, I can say that I have never in
     all my life experienced such a wild exhilaration as on the
     commencement of a big stunt, like the last April one for example.
     The excitement for the last half-hour or so before it is like
     nothing on earth. The only thing that compares with it are the
     few minutes before the start of a big school match. Well,
     cheer-oh!

This was our son's last letter. A few days later came a field postcard
from him, bearing date July 30, the day before the battle in which he
was killed. After that, silence--a silence that will remain unbroken
this side of the grave.



PART III

EPILOGUE



EPILOGUE

  _The day's high work is over and done,
   And these no more will need the sun:
       Blow, you bugles of England, blow!_

  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  _That her Name like a sun among stars might glow
   Till the dusk of time with honour and worth:
   That, stung by the lust and the pain of battle,
   The One Race ever might starkly spread
   And the One Flag eagle it overhead!
   In a rapture of wrath and faith and pride,
   Thus they felt it and thus they died._

  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

      _Blow, you bugles of England, blow!_

                              W. E. HENLEY: "THE LAST POST."


The circumstances in which Lieutenant H. P. M. Jones met his death are
described in the following letters sent to me by Major Haslam, his
commanding officer, and Corporal Jenkins, the N.C.O. in his Tank:

                                              _August 2nd, 1917._

     Your son went into action with his Tank, together with the
     remainder of the company, in the early morning of July 31st. He
     was killed by a bullet whilst advancing. From the evidence of his
     crew I gather he was unconscious for a short time, then died
     peacefully. I knew your son before he joined the Tanks. We were
     both in the 2nd Cavalry Brigade together. I was delighted when he
     joined my company. No officer of mine was more popular. He was
     efficient, very keen, and a most gallant gentleman. His crew
     loved him and would follow him anywhere. Such men as he are few
     and far between. I am certain he didn't know what fear was.
     Please accept the sympathy of the whole company and myself in
     your great loss. We shall ever honour his memory.

                                                 J. C. HASLAM (MAJOR),
                                 No. 7 Compy., "C" Battn., Tank Corps.

Corporal D. C. Jenkins wrote:

     I have been asked by your son's crew to write to you, as I was
     his N.C.O. in the Tank. Your son, Lieut. H. P. M. Jones, was shot
     by a sniper. The bullet passed through the port-hole and entered
     your son's brain. Death was almost instantaneous. I and
     Lance-Corporal Millward, his driver, did all we could for your
     son, but he was beyond human help. His death is deeply felt not
     only by his own crew, but by the whole section. His crew miss him
     very much. It was a treat to have him on parade with us, as he
     was so jolly. We all loved him. Fate was against us to lose your
     son. He was the best officer in our company, and never will be
     replaced by one like him. I and the rest of the crew hope that
     you will accept our deepest sympathy in your sorrow.

Paul Jones had touched life at so many points--Dulwich College, the
athletic world, the Army, journalism, the House of Commons, and
Wales--that the news of his death caused grief in far-extending
circles. Of the hundreds of letters of condolence that reached us I
propose to reproduce a few here. They are unvarying in their testimony
to his idealism, his personal charm and the nobility of his nature.
Extracts from his last letter, published in the _Daily Chronicle_, the
_Western Mail_, Cardiff, and _Public Opinion_, attracted considerable
attention.

       *       *       *       *       *

Lieutenant Jack Donaldson, who, as an A.S.C. officer, was attached to
the 2nd Cavalry Brigade in the winter of 1916-17, wrote:

                                             OFFICERS' MESS,
                                                   HARROWBY CAMP,
                                                             GRANTHAM.
                                              _August 6th, 1917._

     It was with the very deepest sorrow that I read in to-day's paper
     of the death of your son in action. As you know, he worked under
     me throughout the greater part of last winter. He was the first
     subaltern, if I may so express it, I ever had, for he worked
     under me though he was actually senior in point of rank. He was
     also the best and most loyal one I could wish for. Far more than
     that, he was a most interesting and lovable companion and friend.
     In fact, when he left us the gap created in our mess was one that
     became more noticeable every day. Intellectually, he was a great
     loss to us, for his interests were extremely broad and his views
     original. But far more than that, there was a sort of bigness
     about him. He was an idealist, and the rarer sort, the sort that
     carries its theories into practice.

     We all laughed at him and at some of the things he did and the
     scruples he had, but in our hearts I think we all honoured and
     loved him for them. For without forcing it in any way upon others
     he himself followed a code of honour that differed from, and was
     stricter than, that of the world around him. He was quixotic,
     especially in anything to do with money, and often to his own
     personal loss. I think we were all the better for having known
     him. He seemed hardly to think of himself at all.

     No man I ever met was more censorious of his own actions, or more
     obstinate in his defence of any principle or theory he was
     advocating in argument, no matter how hare-brained it might seem.
     We used to spend hours arguing over anything, from free-will to
     the "loose-head." I knew, of course, how much he disliked the
     class of work (requisitioning of local supplies) he was doing for
     me, though no one could have worked harder and few have done it
     better; but the commercialism of it was abhorrent to him. It was
     his duty to drive a hard bargain and to be one too many for a
     knave, and while he did his best to fulfil it he disliked the
     task.

     I took him down on his first interview for the Tanks, and again
     on his transfer; and though I had no share in getting him the
     latter, I don't know that I should regret it if I had. For I saw
     him several times afterwards. I had a couple of joy-rides in his
     land-ship, and I and all others who met him could not but remark
     how happy he was. After the Arras show I believe he was simply
     radiant. He has died the death he would have chosen and in a good
     cause. Many a time he said to me that he was sure he would never
     survive the war, and that he did not, for himself, greatly care,
     for he was not built for a mercenary age. We may be sure that all
     is well with him where he lies.

     I last saw him at Poperinghe about a month ago. He was full of
     spirits then, though under unpleasant enough conditions. Since
     then my transfer, applied for at the same time as his, has come
     through. I was so looking forward to another meeting with him
     later in France.

From Captain Maurice Drucquer, barrister-at-law, now serving in the
A.S.C.:

     I want to tell you how grieved I was to hear of the loss of your
     son. He received his commission the same day as I did, and we
     were posted to the same station. I only enjoyed his company for
     three months, as he was sent abroad. During that short period he
     had endeared himself to all of us, his brother officers, though
     we were many years his senior in age. What appealed to me most in
     Paul was the combination in him of boyhood and manhood. There was
     not the slightest attempt at pretence, not the slightest sign of
     precociousness, no desire to ape the tone or the airs of those
     among whom he worked. On another side of his character he was in
     every respect a man. He tackled all problems of a serious nature
     with a grasp of the subject which might well be the envy of a
     thoughtful man. One could not enter into conversation with him
     without at once perceiving that he must have given much thought
     and study to the everyday affairs of life. His knowledge of
     literature was great, and one was surprised, even abashed, at his
     store. His hours off duty were spent well and wisely. A certain
     period was always given to healthy exercise, and then would come,
     almost as a matter of course, hours of fruitful reading. The
     affectionate part of his nature came out in his relations with
     the people with whom he lodged. He earned the affection of the
     whole household, and the lady of the house has often told me that
     she loved him like her own sons. I saw much in Paul that I cannot
     put into writing, and I think he had the spirit to see certain
     truths which we see all too dimly.

Mr. George Smith, M.A., Headmaster of Dulwich College since the autumn
of 1914, writes:

     It was with deep regret that I learned of Paul's death, and I
     feel most sincerely for you all in your great sorrow. As you
     know, I was brought very closely into touch with him as soon as I
     came to Dulwich. He was the captain of the XV and of the football
     of the College during my first year; and I relied on him mainly
     for the organising and inspiring of the games. There his energy
     and keenness were invaluable to us. Then, as a prefect, he used
     to bring his essays every week; and I was greatly impressed by
     his intellectual power and promise. I remember how full his
     essays were of matter; how ready he was to grasp and to originate
     new ideas; how vividly and emphatically he expressed himself. We
     looked forward to a brilliant and useful career for him. But it
     was not to be. It is very hard to lose him. But he has done his
     duty; and he leaves behind him a memory that we of the old school
     must especially cherish and honour.

The Reverend A. H. Gilkes, Vicar of St. Mary Magdalene, Oxford,
formerly Headmaster of Dulwich College, in a touching tribute to the
"noble character of your brave, dear and able son," said: "I
sympathise with you fully and deeply. It means little, I know, to you
in your trouble, but I trust it means something, that your son was so
much loved and admired, and is so sadly missed by so many. He was
fearless, strong and capable, and his heart was as soft and kind as a
heart can be. I thought that he would do great things; and indeed, sad
though it is, I do not know that he could have done a greater."

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. J. A. Joerg, principal of the Modern Side, Dulwich College, a
gentleman of German antecedents, for whom my son had a high and an
unalterable regard, wrote:

     It was with the greatest horror that I read of the fall in action
     of your hero-son Paul. I read his noble character during the many
     years he was with me, and I recognised and admired the great
     sense of justice and duty and loyalty that were such prominent
     features with him. His deep gratitude for anything that was done
     for him will always be remembered by me. He was a noble boy. I
     shall always reverence his memory.

Mr. P. Hope, Classical master at Dulwich, to whom Paul owed much when
studying English literature, and whom he always recalled with
affection, sent me a pen-picture of my son limned with insight and
love:

                                             _August 18th, 1917._

     I have heard with deep sorrow and distress of the death of your
     dear son, H. P. M. Jones, killed in action. Your son was never in
     the Classical Sixth at Dulwich College, and so was not directly a
     pupil of mine. But he often came to me for advice and help, and
     we often talked together about many things. I always cherished a
     real regard and admiration for him and his sterling qualities and
     great ability. He was a most kind-hearted and generous-minded
     boy, one who had the best interests of the school at heart, one
     who never spared himself if he could in any way render a service
     to his team or to the school as a whole; one who could be relied
     on to act loyally, faithfully and conscientiously in all that he
     did; one who would place duty before all other considerations. He
     was an indefatigable worker, a boy of great power and promise,
     and, so far as we could prophesy, was sure to achieve a high and
     distinguished position for himself in the world later on. He was
     greatly beloved by the boys, his own school-fellows, and honoured
     and respected by all his masters.

     I well remember how he gave up hour after hour of his own time
     out of school to the training of the XV; how he would throw
     himself heart and soul into the heavy work connected with the
     organisation of the school football and games generally, and how
     he would do all in his power to make things happier and easier
     for the boys with whose welfare he was entrusted. He was indeed,
     as he grew older, just one of those men whom we could least of
     all spare in these days, the very embodiment in himself of all
     that is best in the public-school spirit, the very incarnation of
     self-sacrifice and devotion. I cannot tell you how much we shall
     miss him at the College among the Old Boys. There is no name or
     memory that we shall hold more dear than that of your much-loved
     son. He has died, even as he lived, in fulfilment of the high
     ideal which he set before him, and there could be no nobler or
     more glorious death.

     Though our loss is great, yours is unspeakably greater. Our
     hearts go out to you in reverent sympathy. As we think of the
     dear ones who have made the great sacrifice for us, it is hard to
     fix our thoughts on the contemplation of their shining example,
     to find satisfaction in the assurance that their memory and their
     inspiration can never die. It is so human and so natural that we
     should miss them in their actual presence in our midst; and
     their absence leaves such a hideous gap in our lives which
     nothing can ever fill. But maybe as the days go by we shall
     understand more clearly the real value of their sacrifice and
     their life and death.

       "Salute the sacred dead,
        Who went and who return not--
            Say not so!
        We rather seem the dead
            That stayed behind."

     Your son was a truly good, simple-hearted, modest, gallant man:
     he has contributed his part to the making of the new world which
     we all pray will follow after the war--the new rule of
     righteousness and peace. He shall not be without his reward; and
     you, too, who have taught him from childhood and filled his mind
     with your own ideals, may remember him with pride as having
     fulfilled the highest aspirations which you had formed for him.

Mr. E. H. Gropius, who was captain of the school in 1914, when my son
was at the head of the Modern Side, writes:

     Paul was a friend of mine long before he reached the brilliant
     position he held when he left Dulwich. During his last two terms
     I got to know him still better and to admire him more, not only
     for his intellectual and athletic brilliance, but for his solid
     qualities, his strength of character and sound judgment. He was
     one of the best footer captains we have had, and he never once
     put his own personal feelings before the good of the school. As
     for in-school footer, he absolutely reformed it. Not that footer
     is the most important thing in a man's life. But if a man can
     play as he did, he must be a sportsman; and Paul died as he
     lived, a great sportsman. He could quite easily have kept in the
     A.S.C., but he preferred to do more. It is men like he was that
     we need most, but even if he is not with us his memory is. His
     influence at school was enormous; to all who knew him that
     influence will remain a powerful factor in their lives. Though
     we had hoped to be up in Oxford together, it could not be. Had he
     gone up his genius would certainly have made its mark.

     When I think of my last year and the great times we had at
     Dulwich, it seems impossible that I shan't see Paul again. He was
     absolutely one of the best, the very best. But I am sure he would
     not wish us to be over-miserable on his account. His last letter
     gives a perfect picture of his mind and character. I really
     believe that he did welcome the war, not as a war, but because it
     gave him, as well as others, the chance of seeing things in their
     true light.... When I saw Mrs. Bamkin a few weeks ago we talked
     very intimately about Paul. She knew him only through her own boy
     who was killed in July, 1915, and through what other fellows and
     myself had said--and we came to the conclusion that Paul's was
     one of the finest characters of my time at school.... He inspired
     in me all the highest feelings. His example will help us on and
     he will live among us still.

A young German, Mr. Gerald Roederwald, a fellow-student with my son in
the Modern Sixth, wrote:

     I did not think that Paul would ever be able to get into the
     firing-line at all, but it was just like him to seek the thick of
     danger. Reading his last letter it seemed to me just as though we
     were still at school together in the midst of an argument. Often
     have I thought of "H. P. M." as we used to call him at school. We
     all liked him. What a career his would surely have been! It was
     an accepted tradition amongst us that old "H. P. M." would one
     day astonish the world. Those who knew him well derived great
     benefit from his cultured mind. I myself owe more than I can
     express to your son's influence over me. No one who came near him
     could help coming under the spell of his personality. His
     remarkable intellectual gifts made us feel that he was our
     superior. Not only that, his great stature seemed to be the
     essence of his whole being. I mean that everything about him was
     on a large scale. Nature had gifted him with a generous, open
     mind, which was incapable of taking in anything that was small or
     mean. Whenever Paul spoke to me his eyes seemed to probe into the
     depths of my whole being. As long as I live I shall never forget
     him. His spirit is with me always, for it is to him that I owe my
     first real insight into Life.

From Mr. Raymond T. Young, Felsted School:

     I knew Paul as a small boy at Brightlands ten years ago. He was
     in my form and had already begun to show great promise
     intellectually and as a sound and splendid boy. Afterwards I came
     across him when he played such a fine game for the Dulwich Rugger
     side. Had he been spared, I quite think he would have taken a
     "Blue" at forward for Oxford. You must comfort yourselves with
     the constant thought that you have given for England one whose
     whole life was as perfect and true as it was full of promise of
     great things; and also you must be very proud of having had so
     much to give.

The Master of Balliol (Mr. Arthur L. Smith), writing on 21st August,
1917, said:

     In sending you the official condolences of the college on the
     death of your brilliant son, I should like also to express
     personally my own feelings of the very successful career that was
     open to him at Oxford, which, like so many of our best young
     scholars, he gave up without a moment's hesitation to serve his
     country and the world in this great crisis. Such a change is
     surely not all loss if we could see things in their true
     proportion and in their realities; but meantime the loss must
     indeed be severe to you, because you must have been justly proud
     of him on so many grounds. I remember how he struck me in the
     scholarship examination by the excellent way in which he put some
     very vigorous good sense, particularly on the subject of the
     character of Oliver Cromwell; and I see that my notes refer to
     him as "showing much vivacity of expression," "sound reading,"
     "strong mental grasp and excellent arrangement and method." He
     also made "a most pleasing and favourable impression in 'viva
     voce.'" He would have been a very leading and, in the best sense,
     popular man in the college. His last letter is one of the finest
     even of the many fine letters that have been written under such
     circumstances during the last few years.

A high official at the War Office wrote:

     In this great and cruel crisis I have had before me many things
     which have evoked the deepest sympathy of my heart; but I know of
     nothing which has distressed me more than the sad blow which you
     have received. Your son's whole life and his outlook on life
     appealed to me in a remarkable way. There was nothing mean or
     small in his physical form or his mental equipment; and his fine,
     strong joy of life, and his love for the everlasting ideals made
     an impression on my mind which will not readily be erased. It is
     not so well known as it should be how manfully he overcame every
     obstacle to make himself the most perfect defender of his country
     and how ardently he strove with a hero's heart to place his
     glorious gifts upon the altar of his country. He was all that the
     most exacting paternal standards could demand. Now that his sun
     has gone down while it is yet day, with all its brilliant past
     and all its brilliant prospects, I join with your many friends in
     the sincere and heartfelt hope that the courage, consolation and
     pride which come to those who have "nurtured the brave to do
     brave things" may be yours in largest measure in your hour of
     sore trial.

From Mr. Lionel Jones, Science headmaster, Birmingham Technical
School:

     I believe ours was the first house Paul visited, and I have
     followed his career with interest and with, indeed, a sense of
     pride. We had expected him to do great things; yet he has done
     greater, for his last letter shows he had grasped the inner
     meanings of Life and Death more clearly than we do, and was
     content to sink the lesser in the greater Being.

From Mr. Hugh Spender, Parliamentary correspondent of the _Westminster
Gazette_:

     I had the privilege of meeting your son, and I shall always carry
     a very lively recollection of him. He was so modest that I did
     not realise what a distinguished college career he had had. But
     he impressed me very vividly with the strength of his
     personality, remarkable in one so young. There was an air of
     radiant gaiety about him which sprang from a pure heart and a
     lofty purpose. I realised that he must have had a very great
     influence for good. This thought must be a great consolation to
     you in your grief. Here was a life "sans peur et sans reproche,"
     a light to brighten the footsteps of every man who knew of him.

A well-known Professor, himself a Balliol history scholar, wrote:

     I only met your son once, but I liked him much, and from the time
     he got the Brakenbury the promise of his future career at Balliol
     had a very special interest for me. I felt sure he was destined
     to do great things. It is tragic to know that that destiny will
     now never be realised; but he has done greater things; he has
     done the greatest thing of all. That he should have joined the
     Army so early and pressed for transfer to the machine-gun
     corps--a unit which occupies posts of the greatest danger, and is
     required to hold them at all costs and against all odds--makes
     his achievement all the more memorable. Your sorrow must indeed
     be great, and almost intolerable, but the thought of such a high
     and fearless devotion will, I trust, do something to assuage it.

From Mr. William Hill, an old journalistic friend of mine:

     Yesterday morning I read with regret profound, on account of the
     nation's loss as well as your own, the report of the death of
     your gallant son. Yesterday evening in a volume by
     Watterson--which incidentally contains a sketch of the Captain
     Paul Jones of history, depicted as a brilliant young man, with
     charms of person and graces of manner--I read in an appreciation
     of Abraham Lincoln a letter written by the great President to a
     sorely-bereaved mother, which I feel it to be a duty and an
     honour to recite in part to you in this hour. Lincoln wrote:

       "I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine which
       should attempt to beguile you from a loss so overwhelming. But
       I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be
       found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray
       that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your
       bereavement and leave you only the cherished memory of the
       loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have
       laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of Freedom."

     In Your Own Case, Lieut. Paul Jones, In The Form Of His Last
     Letter And By The Testimony Of His Major, Has Left A Legacy Of
     Protest And Aspiration And Example Which I Ardently Trust And
     Believe Will Reinforce Powerfully The Spirit Of Regeneration, So
     Long Belated, That Is Already Beginning To Influence Materially
     The Britain Of Our Immediate Future. Sealed By The Sacrifice Of
     His Life, The Note Of A Saner And Purer National Life Set In His
     Letter By Your Son Will, Ere Half The Century Is Past, Give Us, I
     Am Confident, A Stronger And Mightier Britain.

From Mrs. Denbigh Jones, Llanelly:

     "Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?" That has
     been the ideal of these brave young souls. From one great joy to
     another your glorious boy led you on. He lived and moved with an
     intensity and a fullness beyond our slow dreams, as if rushing to
     consume everything in life worth reaching and learning in the
     given time. The intoxication of life which possessed him will
     shine for ever in your memory, as it was not of earth. He scaled
     the topmost crags of duty, and now his young voice still calls to
     us "far up the heights."

My son's nurse, for whom he had a warm and abiding affection, married
Mr. W. W. Jones, of Llanelly, who wrote:

     On behalf of my wife, his devoted and loving nurse Nan, and
     myself, we extend to you our most heartfelt and sincere sympathy
     in this great catastrophe of your lives through the death in
     action of your dear son Paul, whilst fighting for the rights of
     justice, humanity and freedom. He died like the hero he was. My
     wife was greatly distressed and painfully grieved when she learnt
     of the cruel loss you have sustained. Paul's name was a household
     word in our home. She always spoke of him as such a noble,
     unselfish and virtuous boy, good in spirit, great of heart. It is
     hard that he should be taken, his life already so rich in
     achievements and with its promise of a brilliant and golden
     future. By his death it is not only you, his parents, who will
     suffer; but Paul, being in himself a great democrat--which in
     these days we can ill afford to lose--the democracies of the
     world will suffer by the loss of such a gallant and noble
     gentleman.

From a man of letters:

     Thinking of your great sorrow over the loss of that splendid boy
     of yours, there came to my mind that passage in _Macbeth_ where
     Ross tells old Siward:

       "Your son, my lord, has paid a soldier's debt;
        He only lived but till he was a man;
        The which no sooner had his prowess confirmed
        In the unshrinking station where he fought,
        But like a man he died.
       SIWARD: Had he his hurts before?
       ROSS: Ay, on the front.
       SIWARD: Why, then, God's soldier be he!"

From the editor of a London daily newspaper:

     It is infinitely tragic to hear day by day of this waste of the
     life of brilliant young men who were the hope of the future. And
     yet we must not say that it is waste. If we say that, then there
     is no mitigation of the sorrow. The price is appalling, but we
     must believe that it is being paid for a treasure the world
     cannot live without; and if that treasure is won, your sorrow
     will at least be assuaged by the thought that it is not in vain,
     and that what you have lost the world has gained.

From a friend and colleague on the _Daily Chronicle_:

     My wife idolised Paul for his lovableness and nobility. The
     vision we had of him in his splendid youth has been made
     unforgettable by his glorious sacrifice.

From a Welsh editor:

     The memory of Paul's rare and great qualities and the definite
     promise he gave of a very brilliant career will ever remain
     fragrantly in your hearts and in those of your friends who had
     the happiness to know him.

From an Irish editor:

     I was impressed no less by his unaffected modesty than by his
     evident ability and high character. Many as have been the
     brilliant young lives lost in this war, there can have been but
     few which carried such high promise as his.

From a Scottish journalist:

     The Greeks summed up human virtue in a phrase which can hardly be
     bettered--[Greek: kalos kai agathos]. In the promise of his life,
     and even more in the grandeur of his death, your son was [Greek:
     kalos kai agathos].

From a Dulwich schoolboy:

     I can say nothing beyond this, that I feel certain Dulwich will
     not forget.

From his uncle, Mr. Brinley R. Jones, Llanelly:

     What pride to have reared such a son and to know that he felt
     that the greatest thing in life was to lay all on the altar of
     his country! And to think of the gallant band whom he has
     joined--W. G. C. Gladstone, Rupert Brooke, Raymond Asquith,
     Donald Hankey, and many more.

       "And ofttime cometh our wise Lord God,
            Master of every trade,
        And tells them tales of His daily toil,
            Of Edens newly made;
        And they rise to their feet as He passes by,
            Gentlemen unafraid."

     The tears came to my eyes, tears of joy and pride, when I read
     the extract from Paul's wonderful letter to Hal. We had looked
     forward to Paul serving England in his life--great service for
     which his transcendent gifts seemed to mark him out. It has been
     ordained, however, that his service is by way of Calvary. We can
     only wonder what it all means.

A colleague of mine in the Press Gallery wrote:

     He was a fine fellow and you had good reason to be proud of him.
     I was greatly struck by his last letter. It breathes a splendid
     spirit and reminds me of a passage in my favourite essay in
     Stevenson: "In the hot fit of life, a-tip-toe on the highest
     point of being, he passes at a bound on to the other side."

An old friend who knew Paul well and whose two sons were educated at
Dulwich College wrote:

     I grieve beyond measure at the passing of so noble-hearted a man.
     He, like others who have gone down in this horrible war, was of
     the very flower of our race--he even more than most of them; and
     the nation's loss is great, too. There are consolations even in
     such an affliction as yours; and the highest consolation of all
     must be that Paul willingly laid down his life for his
     fellow-men.

From Major David Davies, M.P., Llandinam:

     Your gallant son's death brings to my mind a verse of Adam
     Lindsay Gordon's:

       "Many seek for peace and riches, length of days and life of ease;
        I have sought for one thing, which is fairer unto me than these;
        Often, too, I've heard the story, in my boyhood, of the doom
        Which the fates assigned me--Glory, coupled with an early tomb."

     Your son has covered himself with imperishable glory, though his
     promising young life has suddenly been cut off. Is it too much to
     hope that those great principles for which he fought so nobly
     will at last become the heritage of the whole world? He and those
     who have fallen with him will then have created a new earth, in
     which shall dwell peace and righteousness. I firmly believe it
     will be so; but it is up to us who are left behind to see to it
     that all the heroic sacrifices have not been made in vain, and
     that the "new order" will be worthy of those ideals which were
     cherished by the men who laid down their lives for them.

Of the many messages that reached us, none touched a deeper chord than
the following:

                                              _7th August, 1917._

     I would like to convey to you my condolences in the loss of your
     son, Lieut. H. P. M. Jones. Although a stranger, I am moved to do
     this after reading in to-day's _Daily Chronicle_ the account of
     his career and those noble words he wrote in his letter home just
     before his death. I and those around me felt, "Here was a fine
     man and one the country could ill afford to lose." May it be some
     comfort to you in your grief, that your boy's death made at least
     one man say to himself: "I will try to be a better
     man."--ANONYMOUS.

A young Welsh musician wrote:

     I cannot express how intensely I feel for you in your great
     sorrow at the death of Paul. Of surpassing intellect and noble
     ideals, he would have been invaluable to the country in the near
     future. I feel sure it must be a source of great pride and
     comfort to you that he made the supreme sacrifice in such a
     courageous way, so becoming to his noble soul. He will live for
     all time in my mind as the very essence of honour and idealism.

"That was a wonderful letter," writes a newspaper proprietor. "I have
read nothing finer. It brought tears to my eyes, but it made me proud
of my race."

       *       *       *       *       *

The athletic editor of a London newspaper, who is an authority on
public-school athletics, wrote:

     In your son's death we have lost a model sportsman. I will long
     remember him, as will Dulwich and the young giants of the school
     he so splendidly led.

From an official of the House of Commons:

     I have prayed earnestly that there may be comfort in your
     mourning, and in due time a binding-up of hearts so sorely
     broken. The record of his school life, vivid with success and
     leadership and, best of all, whole-hearted in its purity, wrung
     my heart as I thought of what had been lost to us. But I believe
     he has passed on to other service.

"A life nobly lived and nobly died--the ideal"--such was the comment
of an old colleague of mine, who has himself since lost a promising
soldier son. "I venture to say," he added, "that his noble letter,
written almost on the eve of his death, will carry healing to
thousands and thousands of sorely-stricken hearts in these sad times.
It should be printed in letters of gold."

       *       *       *       *       *

"Be sure," wrote an old Cardiff friend, "in all your sorrow that He
who fashioned your boy so well and equipped him so fully, still has
him in His own kind care and keeping; and that when you 'carry on,'
bearing your load bravely, your dear boy will be nearer to you than
you often think, in some splendid service, too."

       *       *       *       *       *

"It is such noble sacrifices as your son's," wrote a well-known M.P.,
"that almost alone redeem the horror of this world-wide catastrophe."

       *       *       *       *       *

From M. Marsillac, London correspondent of _Le Journal_ (Paris):

     What a truly magnificent spirit was shown in that letter of your
     son! Indeed, we who remain behind are more to be pitied than
     those who go forth into Eternal Peace by such a noble and
     luminous road.

Mr. Alexander Mackintosh, its Parliamentary correspondent, writing in
the _British Weekly_, said:

     Lieutenant Paul Jones, as an occasional visitor, was familiar to
     the Press Gallery. Oxford has lost another young man of unusual
     gifts, a scholar and an athlete, as modest as he was brave, and
     the Gallery has a sense of personal loss. Yet it bids his father
     say, in the beautiful apostrophe which Rustum puts into the mouth
     of the snow-headed Zal:

       "O son! I weep thee not too sore,
        For willingly, I know, thou met'st thine end!"

Mr. Arnold White ("Vanoc") in the _Referee_ for August 12, 1917:

     Just before his death Lieutenant Paul Jones wrote a letter which
     deserves record on imperishable bronze. This young officer has
     given a new lustre to the name of Paul Jones.

Messages of condolence were received from the King and Queen, the
Prime Minister, Cabinet and ex-Cabinet Ministers, the Army Council,
members of both Houses of Parliament, clergymen, London and provincial
pressmen, scholars, soldiers, labour-leaders, newspaper and
journalistic societies and political associations. Letters came not
only from the four countries of the United Kingdom, but also from
France, Palestine, South Africa, India and Canada. These sympathetic
expressions from far and near, from the exalted and the humble, prove,
if proof were needed, that the memory of brave soldiers like Paul
Jones, who have sacrificed their lives in a great cause, is cherished
with gratitude and reverence by their countrymen.

  They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old;
  Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
  At the going down of the sun and in the morning
  We will remember them.



INDEX


  Acton, Lord, 78

  Alleyn, Edward, 14

  _Alleynian, The_, 25, 29, 41 _et seq._

  Alleynians, Old:
    Ambrose, 231, 240
    Barnard, W. J., 170
    Beer, H. O., 155
    Bray, F. W., 156
    Cartwright, E. C., 20, 225
    Clark, G. P. S., 157
    Clarke, E. F., 25, 237
    Cohn, F. A., 244
    Corsan, 170
    Crabbe, 174
    Dawson, 208
    Dicke, R., 170
    Doherty, 241
    Edkins, H., 26, 213, 217
    Evans, W. E., 248
    Fischer, A. W., 29, 194
    Gill, W. G. O., 240
    Gilligan, A. E. R., 29, 39, 248
    Gilligan, A. H. H., 38, 177
    Gover, 20
    Gropius, E. H., 246, 264
    Hannaford, S. J., 23
    Henderson, W. J., 196
    Hillier, F. N., 217
    Howard, C. C., 194
    Jones, Basil, 29, 189, 199
    Jordan, J. P., 225
    Kemp, 149
    Killick, S. H., 199
    Knox, F. P., 155
    Lloyd, R., 139
    Lowe, C. N., 241
    Mackinnon, R. F., 218
    Mann, J. S., 218
    Peaker, A. P., 208
    Potter, K. R., 217
    Reynolds, J., 248
    Roederwald, G., 246, 265
    Sewell, 234
    Tatnell, 176
    Trimingham, 234
    Wetenhall, 20

  America and the War, 101, 103

  Antoinette, Marie, 201

  Army Service Corps, 104, 144, 187, 191, 198

  Arnold, Matthew, 80

  Asquith, H. H., 162, 165

  Asquith, Raymond, 212

  Athletes and the War, 49, 50, 124

  Athletics:
    Cricket, 37 _et seq._
    Football, 21, 28, 177, 186, 223, 233
    Lawn tennis, 21
    Running, 22
    Swimming, 21, 183, 246
    "Victor Ludorum," 23


  Bacon, Francis, 14

  Balkan States, 151, 156

  Barnett, D. O., 199

  Balliol College, Oxford, 1, 19, 23, 227
    Master of, 227, 266

  Bennett, Arnold, 123

  Bernhardi, General, 93, 236

  Brakenbury scholarship, 19, 227

  British Empire, 87, 93, 122

  Brooke, Rupert, 199

  Browning, 77, 81, 118

  Brussels, 56

  Buchan, John, 154, 185, 202, 228

  Burke, 76, 201

  Burns, 76

  Byron, 21, 77, 203


  Cæsar, Julius, 87, 88, 125

  Canteen, Expeditionary Force, 205

  Capital and Labour, 86, 250

  Carlyle, 79, 82, 91, 111

  Cavalry, British, 105, 136, 145, 163, 188, 219

  Charles I. and II., 89, 90

  _Chronicle, Daily_, 13, 148

  Churchill, Winston, 165, 184

  Commercialism, 50, 93, 253

  Conquest, Norman, 89

  Cromwell, 89, 125


  Dante, 76

  Dardanelles operations, 102

  Democracy, 87, 96, 125, 249

  Dickens, Charles, 73, 77

  Donaldson, Jack, 258

  Doyle, Conan, 72, 185

  Drake, 89

  Dulwich College, 1, 14, 24, 240, 247, 252

  Dulwich Masters:
    Boon, F. C, 18
    Doulton, H. V., 17, 26
    Gibbon, W. D., 30, 241
    Gilkes, A. H., 15, 225, 261
    Hope, P., 262
    Joerg, J. A., 18, 262
    Kittermaster, A. N. C., 180, 194, 247
    Nightingale, F. L., 171, 194, 247
    Oldham, F. M., 45
    Smith, George, 261


  Education, English, 96
    Classics in our public schools, 17
    English Universities, 227
    Public schools and the War, 151

  Elizabeth, Queen, 87

  Engineering, 54, 55, 234

  English qualities, 93, 122, 125, 200, 203, 206

  Epicureanism, 82

  Erasmus, 44, 79, 89

  Evolution, 94, 122, 128, 243


  Flanders, 140, 143, 181

  Founder's Day at Dulwich, 25

  Fox, 91

  France, 99, 131

  Frederick the Great, 90, 116, 118

  French farmers, 179, 217, 225

  French generalship, 215

  Froude, 77, 79, 88, 112, 117


  Garvin, R. G., 199

  George, D. Lloyd, 93, 123, 193, 204

  Germany, 56, 93, 123, 130
    Her diplomacy, 127
    Her methods in war, 100, 235

  Gibbon, 76, 88, 91

  Girondins, the, 183

  Gladstone, 93

  Goethe, 57, 74, 83, 125

  Goldsmith, 77, 90

  Greece, Ancient, 94

  Grey, Sir Edward, 91, 127


  Haldane, Lord, 165

  Hamlet, 182

  Haslam, J. C., 108, 258

  Hay, Ian, 247

  Hildebrand, 88

  Hindenburg, 102, 161

  History, 19, 87, 242

  Homer, 73, 77

  Horses, about, 136, 159, 164, 181, 188, 213

  House of Commons, 95, 123, 163

  Hudson, W. H., 80


  India and the War, 95

  Ireland, 129, 185, 214


  Jews, the, 92

  Johnson, Dr., 90, 96

  Jonson, Ben, 76


  Kant, 214

  Keats, 76

  Kipling, Rudyard, 73

  Kitchener, Lord, 186


  "Laissez-faire" system, 92, 125, 129

  Leonardo da Vinci, 44

  Llanelly, 52, 232

  Louis XIV, 58, 87, 90

  Louis XV, 91

  Louis XVI, 91, 201

  Luther, 89


  Macaulay, 77

  Maeterlinck, 81

  Mainwaring, Thomas, 9

  Marx, Karl, 249

  McGill, Patrick, 224

  Milton, 75, 81, 202, 223

  Morocco, 93

  Morris, William, 65

  Music:
    Beethoven, 57, 60, 67, 204, 232
    Classical and Romantic, 66
    Gluck, 67
    Mozart, 67, 68
    Nikisch, 232
    Opera, development of, 64, 67
    Wagner, 61 _et seq._, 115, 232, 245, 246


  Napoleon, 58, 61, 116, 125, 136, 249

  Navy, British, 12, 130
    Battle of Jutland, 186
    Falklands Islands battle, 101

  Norman Conquest, 89


  Oxford, 19, 20, 227


  Paris, 58

  Patriotism, 92, 250

  Pax Britannica, 249

  Pax Romana, 249

  Pitt, the younger, 91

  Plymouth, 9, 11

  Political economy, 87

  Politicians and the War, 148, 163, 172

  Pope, 75

  Prisoners, German, 203

  Public schools, influence of, 48, 151

  Punch and the War, 138, 154

  Puritanism, 82


  Redmond, W. H. K., 248

  Rees, Ivor, 204

  Reformation, the, 89

  Revolution, the French, 80, 91

  Rhine, the, 57, 63, 91, 123

  Roberts, Lord, 100

  Rousseau, 77


  Schools:
    Bedford, 32, 38, 134, 166, 185
    Haileybury, 32, 231
    Merchant Taylors', 32, 216
    Sherborne, 32, 38
    St. Paul's, 33, 39

  Shakespeare, 60, 69, 70, 74, 182, 202

  Shaw, G. B., 70, 73

  Simon, Sir John, 172

  Socialism, State, 95

  Socialists and the War, 249

  Soldier, the British, 132, 148, 161

  Somme battlefields, 203, 237

  _Spectator_, 164, 219

  Stoicism, 82


  Tacitus, 73, 88

  Taine, 75, 84

  Tirpitz, 101

  Trade Unionism, 92

  Treitschke, 57, 91, 92


  Vernède, R. E., 49

  Vivian, Hugh, 191


  Wales, 53

  War, the:
    A nocturnal adventure, 168
    An off-day at the front, 173
    Diary of, 99 _et seq._
    Its causes and objects, 47
    Loss of ideal aims, 152
    Motor transport, 160, 190, 194
    Night on a battlefield, 209
    Our treatment of prisoners, 206
    Requisitioning officer's duties, 131, 152, 158, 218
    Tank Corps, 106, 229, 239
    The horse in war, 160, 184
    Verdun, 236
    Ypres, 138, 236
    Zeppelins, 101, 145, 213

  Wells, H. G., 73, 228

  Welsh coal strike, 129

  Welsh football, 34

  Welsh music, 71

  Welsh soldiers, 150, 167, 177, 178

  Wordsworth, 75, 109

  Working-classes, the, 85, 92, 250


  Young, Arthur, 91, 201


  Zangwill, I., 155


Printed by Cassell & Company, Limited. La Belle Sauvage, London, E.C.4

F 15.418.





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