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Book Description

The extract below is only a part of the archive. For full description please contact me. Letter from Arbuthnot to his uncle, the Duke of Atholl. Dated Aug 6th [19]16 [7 pages] '...The censorship nowadays is very rigorous and we are not allowed to say anything at all of our movements which makes letter writing uncommonly difficult. ....have stupidly strained my knee so have had to go sick for a few days which is a cursed nuisance...I like the life very much tho' of course it is a bit monotonous....the three months I have been out here seems like three years so many are the different impressions. To start with I was doing the ordinary company work, but since then they have switched me on to the job of intelligence officer & I run my own tiny little show which consists of observation work, sniping & if ever we get them them to open fighting, scouting....It's quite amusing and I can wander about on my own...I had quite a nice morning 'Hun shooting' a little time ago. We discovered a good place where one could get them crossing two open spaces about 30 yards across from one of their trenches. It was about 900 yards away & we were very well concealed. I lay up myself with a telescopic sight & my pipe & a man with a telescope to observe. It was d-d funny. When I started they were strolling across after a very short time they got a bit quicker, then they ran then crawled & after an hour or two there wasn't a beast on the ground. I think I hit two in about 30 shots. Doesn't sound good shooting but about 5 secs to pick up your object & shoot at 900 yards aint easy. One of them I think was 'out' all right. He dropped like a stone. The other I regret to say was only 'haunched'. He was crossing with a tin of water to a sort of covered trench & I fired just to as he was a yard or two from the opening. He dropped the tin, stuck his stomach out clapped his hand to his backside & shot into cover like a rabbit with a ferret at his tail. It was a good fat backside too! ..... with any luck it can't be so very long now. There are many signs, I think, of the acuteness they are feeling the pressure. The Hun is a determined devil & a brave man but they are getting squeezed more and more as every month goes by & if they last until next Spring it's about the utmost limit I believe. Still I fancy that the end won't come until we have beaten them from the military standpoint so much must depend on this autumn. .... This trench warfare - at least the ordinary routine of it is rather rot. You never see the enemy except occasionally in a glass & it's just shelling at intervals during the day & night varied by machine guns. You don't see the chap that hits you & never know when a shell isn't going to arrive. Conversely you don't know what damage you do yourself as a rule. The organisation of food transport etc is wonderful. We all live very well & trench rather tends to 'fat' than otherwise. Often it is difficult to get much exercise. How on earth are well going to settle down again to ordinary existence I can't think.
Author Gerald Arbuthnot
Date 1916
Binding no binding
Publisher n/a
Illustrator n/a
Condition VG
Pages multiple

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