The Sword of Deborah

First-hand impressions of the British Women's Army in France

Published: 1919
Language: English
Wordcount: 27,697 / 83 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 87.6
LoC Categories: UA, HQ
Downloads: 561
Added to site: 2010.10.25 29360

This little book was written at the request of the Ministry of Information in March of 1918; it was only released for publication—in spite of the need for haste in its compiling which had been impressed on me, and with which I had complied—shortly before Christmas. Hence it may seem somewhat after the fair. But it appears to me that people should still be told about the workers of the war and what they did, even now when we are all struggling back into our chiffons—perhaps more now than ever. For we should not forget, and how should we remember if we have never known?

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They are secret charts, the figures on which, if a man is shown them, he must never disclose, and those figures, when you read them, bring a contraction at once of pity and of pride to the heart. For, on these great charts, that are mapped out into squares and look exactly like temperature charts at a hospital, are drawn curves, like the curves that show the fever of a patient. Up in jagged mountains, down into merciful valleys, goes the line, and at every point there is a number, and that number is the number of the wounded who were brought down from the trenches on such a day. Here, on these charts, is a complete record, in curves, of the rate of the war. Every peak is an offensive, every valley a comparative lull.

Sheet after sheet, all with those carefully-drawn numbered curves zigzagging across them, all showing the very temperature of War....

With this difference--that on these sheets there is no "normal." War is abnormal, and there is not a point of these charts where, when the line touch

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