Ninety-Nine years ago today;
on the eleventh hour
of the eleventh day
of the eleventh month
the guns fell silent
From Great Britain and it’s colonies 744,000 were killed in combat, or were missing in action, and 1,675,000 were wounded in the Great War ~ The War to End All Wars.
If I should die,
think only this of me,
that there’s some corner of a foreign field,
That is forever England.
~ Rupert Brooke
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If I should die, think only this of me:
That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England’s, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.
And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.
by Rupert Brooke
Albert, Bazentin Ridge, Longueval, Deville Wood, High Wood, Fromelles, Pozières, Guillemont, Maurepas, Ginchy, Flers-Courcelette, Morval, Gueudecourt, Lesboeufs, Le Transloy, Thiepval, Thiepval Ridge, Ancre Heights, Hawthorn Ridge Redoubt, Grandcourt, Regina Trench.
Before the world grew mad, the Somme was a placid stream of Picardy, flowing gently through a broad and winding valley northwards to the English Channel. It watered a country of simple beauty… Then came the pestilence. ~ A.D. Gristwood
On July 1st 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme, The British Army suffered 57,470 casualties of which 19,240 were killed. During the entire battle there were 419,654 British, 202,567 French, and 465,181 German casualties.