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Letters of a SoldierLetters of a Soldier, by AnonymousThe Project Gutenberg EBook of Letters of a Soldier, by Anonymous This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give itMoreLetters of a SoldierLetters of a Soldier, by AnonymousThe Project Gutenberg EBook of Letters of a Soldier, by Anonymous This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.netTitle: Letters of a Soldier 1914-1915Author: AnonymousCommentator: A. Clutton-Brock Andr ChevrillonTranslator: V.M.Release Date: December 15, 2005 [EBook #17316]Language: EnglishCharacter set encoding: ISO-8859-1*** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK LETTERS OF A SOLDIER ***Produced by Irma Spehar, Emmy and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net (This file was produced from images generously made available by The Internet Archive/Canadian Libraries)LETTERS OF A SOLDIERYou do not know the things that are taught by him who falls. I do know.(Letter of October 15, 1914.)LETTERS OF A SOLDIER1914-1915WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY A. CLUTTON-BROCKAND A PREFACE BY ANDR CHEVRILLONAUTHORISED TRANSLATION BY V.M.LONDON CONSTABLE AND COMPANY LTD 1917Printed in Great BritainCONTENTSPAGE INTRODUCTION viiPREFACE BY ANDR CHEVRILLON 3LETTERS 33INTRODUCTIONI have been asked to write an Introduction to these letters and I do so, in spite of the fact that M. Chevrillon has already written one, because they are stranger to me, an Englishman, than they could be to him a Frenchman and it seems worth while to warn other English readers of this strangeness. But I would warn them of it only by way of a recommendation. We all hope that after the war there will be a growing intimacy between France and England, that the two countries will be closer to each other than any two countries have ever been before. But if this is to happen we must not be content with admiring each other. Mere admiration will die away indeed, some part of our present admiration of the French has come from our failure to understand them. There is a surprise in it which they cannot think flattering, and which ought never to have been. Perhaps they also have been surprised by us for it is certain that we have not known each other, and have been content with those loose general opinions about each other which are the common result of ignorance and indifference.What we need then is understanding and these letters will help us to it. They are, as we should have said before the war, very French, that is to say, very unlike what an Englishman would write to his mother, or indeed to any one. Many Englishmen, if they could have read them before the war, would have thought them almost unmanly yet the writer distinguished himself even in the French army. But perhaps unmanly is too strong a word to be put in the mouth even of an imaginary and stupid Englishman. No one, however stupid, could possibly have supposed that the writer was a coward but it might have been thought that he was utterly unfitted for war. So the Germans thought that the whole French nation, and indeed every nation but themselves, was unfitted for war, because they alone willed it, and rejoiced in the thought of it.