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Fighting France, from Dunkerque to Belfort

Fighting France, from Dunkerque to Belfort by Edith Wharton
By: (1862-1937)

American novelist Edith Wharton was living in Paris when World War I broke out in 1914. She obtained permission to visit sites behind the lines, including hospitals, ravaged villages, and trenches. Fighting France records her travels along the front in 1914 and 1915, and celebrates the indomitable spirit of the French people.

First Page:

FIGHTING FRANCE

FROM DUNKERQUE TO BELPORT

BY EDITH WHARTON

NEW YORK: MCMXV

CONTENTS

THE LOOK OF PARIS IN ARGONNE IN LORRAINE AND THE VOSGES IN THE NORTH IN ALSACE THE TONE OF FRANCE

THE LOOK OF PARIS

(AUGUST, 1914 FEBUARY, 1915)

I

AUGUST

On the 30th of July, 1914, motoring north from Poitiers, we had lunched somewhere by the roadside under apple trees on the edge of a field. Other fields stretched away on our right and left to a border of woodland and a village steeple. All around was noonday quiet, and the sober disciplined landscape which the traveller's memory is apt to evoke as distinctively French. Sometimes, even to accustomed eyes, these ruled off fields and compact grey villages seem merely flat and tame; at other moments the sensitive imagination sees in every thrifty sod and even furrow the ceaseless vigilant attachment of generations faithful to the soil. The particular bit of landscape before us spoke in all its lines of that attachment. The air seemed full of the long murmur of human effort, the rhythm of oft repeated tasks, the serenity of the scene smiled away the war rumours which had hung on us since morning... Continue reading book >>


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