Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Medals for the murdered nurse, Edith Cavell

Edith Cavell was a British nurse who was working in Belgium when the Great War began. When she helped allied soldiers to escape from German-occupied territory, the Germans took a dim view of it. She was tried by a military court and sentenced to be shot by firing squad.

She was then, with Teutonic inevitability, shot by firing squad. Well, by October 1915, the Germans had shot so many innocent people in Belgium that shooting a genuinely guilty one seemed quite reasonable. The rest of the world couldn't bring themselves to agree, and Germany took one more step towards pariah-dom.

The medal on the left of the picture is the Maidstone Medal, given Nurse Cavell for her service in helping to halt an outbreak of typhoid in Kent, the worst ever in Britain. The second medal Noble Readers will recognize from a previous blog as the French Legion d'honneur. The medal on the right is the Belgian Civic Cross First Class.

By the way, her name is usually mis-stressed - ca-VELL. It should be CA-vel, as in "travel."

Interested in reading more about WW1?   Click here to get a copy of my latest novel, 
The Deadly Playground, 1914 http://smarturl.it/DPAmazon

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