Friday, November 12, 2010

Pictures and Text to Supplement Mr. Darcy's Angel of Mercy

Hospital at Le Touquet
w/covered chandeliers in casino
Here are a few pictures that might help people visualize some of the people and places mentioned in my story. (Click on title, Mr. Darcy's Angel of Mercy, in the sidebar to read the story.)

One of the most famous of the Voluntary Aid Detachments (VAD) of World War I was Vera Brittain, who wrote Testament of Youth. As Paul Delany wrote in Literature Criticism: When Vera Brittain's Testament of Youth was published in 1933 it struck a deep chord among those in England who felt, as she did, that their youth had been 'smashed up' by the Great War. Nearly a million men of their generation lay buried in Flanders and Gallipoli; many of those who remained felt condemned to hollow lives, haunted by loss and grief. They believed that those sacrificed had been men of special grace, the irreplaceable flower of the nation's youth; and they blamed the post-war decline of Britain on their absence. The survivors—guilty, perhaps, simply of having survived—were left to bear the burden of a disappointing and mediocre peace.

In the early days of the war, the Duchess of Westminster, who was married to the wealthiest peer in the realm, the Duke of Westminster, Bendor Grosvenor, outfitted a hospital in the casino at LeTouquet. She is pictured below with her Irish wolfhound and is surrounded by her nurses and VADs.

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