Poetry and World War One more than any other war is associated with the so-called ‘war poets’. The poems written by men such as Wilfred Owen, Siegfried Sassoon and Rupert Brooke, amongst others



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Poetry and World War One

World War One more than any other war is associated with the so-called ‘war poets’. The poems written by men such as Wilfred Owen, Siegfried Sassoon and Rupert Brooke, amongst others, is as poignant today as it was both during the war and immediately after it.

 

World War Two did not produce such a flow of poetry targeted at the lifestyle of those who fought in the war. It is probable that the sheer scale, horror and futility of World War One spurred on already gifted and talented writers who had answered their nation’s call to arms. Some, like Brookes, joined up as he was caught up in a wave of patriotism that swept through Great Britain. The overall belief was that World War One would be over by Christmas 1914 and a vast number of young men did not want to miss ‘the fun’. Their naïve outlook was quickly shattered as they arrived at the frontline and experienced trench warfare. It was the lifestyle they lived that spurred on the war poets. They put onto paper what many others thought. Sassoon wrote about the “Gate” and the men who marched through it to go and fight in the Battle of Ypres or in the battles that surrounded the town.

 

There was no standard blueprint for a war poet – even if the common perception is that they were all officers from a privileged background. This was clearly not the case. The War Poets were from a variety of backgrounds. Some such as Brookes had a very comfortable upbringing. Others such as Lance-Corporal Ledwidge came from more humble stock. Some won medals for gallantry. Others did not. The whole variety of backgrounds gives a clear idea that the impact of war in the trenches hit everyone who served there. Forbidden from writing home with any degree of accuracy/truth about the life they led, some put their thoughts into a diary that could be kept in secret. Some of these diaries survive to this day. Others put their thoughts into poems. As many of these poems rely on interpretation as opposed to being clear facts, the poets bypassed any form of military censorship that certainly would have occurred if they had simply written out their thoughts as prose.

 

The poets also came from a variety of religious backgrounds. The majority were from traditional Church of England backgrounds. Three of the more famous poets – Sassoon, Rosenberg and Frankau – were Jewish. Frankau and Sassoon were to convert to Roman Catholicism. Vera Brittain was a “sceptic”. What united them all regardless of their faiths was the fact that they all started to question the whole aspect of God – if a God existed He could never allow such horror; if He did exist, why did allow men to suffer so much? Sassoon in particular became more and more a harsh critic of the men who pushed religion onto the ranks. They made him “love religion less and less”.

 

The majority of war poets were influenced by the ‘Georgian’ poetry movement. The accepted leader of this movement was Edward Marsh who owned a poetry bookshop in London. He was also a patron of a number of young poets who were yet to make their names, as the war was some years off. The name ‘Georgian’ came from the reigning king – George. The ‘Georgian’ poets considered themselves to be modern and innovative. They had their supporters, such as T S Elliott (“they caress everything they touch”), and at the least they were seen as being more relevant than the late Victorian poets. Many of the war poets were keen readers of classic poetry from Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece. The works of Shakespeare was also popular amongst them.  

Wilfred Owen

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Wilfred Owen became one of the most famous war poets of World War One. Like so many others in the British Army, Wilfred Owen was killed in battle but his poetry remains an enduring legacy of his thoughts and emotions about the war – raging against armchairs generals but in praise of those who actually fought at the front.

 

Wilfred Owen was born on March 18th 1893 in Oswestry, Shropshire. He was the eldest of four children; he had two brothers, Harold and Colin, and a sister, Mary.

 

In 1897 the family moved to Merseyside. By 1906 the family had moved back to Shropshire when work commitments caused his father to move to Shrewsbury where he worked as an Assistant Superintendent on the railways. Owen went to a local school where he quickly demonstrated an interest in the arts, especially the poetry of Keats. He probably started writing poetry at the age of 17. He failed to gain a resident place at the Universities of London and Reading. To raise money for a correspondence course at London University, Owen worked for a year as a lay assistant to a vicar, the Reverend Herbert Wiggin, who had a parish near Reading. What Owen found most marked about his time doing this work, was the stark contrast in lifestyle between Wiggin’s and many of his parishioners. The reverend lived alone in a large vicarage while very many in the parish were poor and lived in one room hovels. It was probably at this time that Owen developed sympathy for the poor and those who had little or nothing – the underdog. This sympathy was to be shown again during his time in the army for those at the front – the pbi – poor, bloody infantry.

 

He moved to Bordeaux to teach at the Berlitz School of English. Here Owen fell under the influence of the French poet Laurent Tailhade. Owen started to experiment with unusual styles of writing poetry and came up with his ‘vowel-rhyme stunt’. He was also literally miles away from his domineering mother and his letters clearly state that for the first time, he openly enjoyed himself and took to drinking wine and smoking.

 

At the start of the war, Owen visited wounded French soldiers at a hospital at Baignères. He not only wrote about what he saw but also drew in great and graphic details the wounds he saw. In later years, his critics used this to claim that Owen had voyeuristic tendencies and that this crept into his most famous verses in the form of him exaggerating the whole pity that surrounded war in the trenches. 

 

In September 1915, Owen returned to England and signed up in the Artists’ Rifles on October 20th. By now he had convinced himself that only by fighting the ‘Bosh’ was he going to do his bit “to save the language of Keats and Shakespeare”. Owen had developed a fear that a German victory in the war would destroy the English language. He managed to join up despite being 5 feet 5 inches tall – in 1914 he would have failed the height required for military service.

 

Owen trained in London where he lodged over the ‘Poetry Bookshop’. Here he befriended its owner, Harold Munro, who encouraged Owen to develop his poetry.

 

In June 1916 he received his commission in the 5th Battalion of the Manchester Regiment and spent the rest of the year in training. Owen arrived in Étaples, France on December 30th – “in perfect spirits”. He found the men he was to lead rough, uncultured and uncouth. However, Owen found that he gained the respect of his men because he proved to be a very good shot with most infantry weapons. It was a curious combination – a man who desired to be a poet who was deadly with a rifle, machine gun and pistol.

 

Owen’s first taste of battle was in January 1917 when he and his men had to hold out for 50 hours in a flooded dug-out in No-Man’s-Land in while being heavily bombarded by German artillery – a position now identified as being near Serre Number 2 Cemetery. Owen simply referred to the area as a “sad land”. His time in this dugout undoubtedly changed Owen. He had seen his training at Étaples as a ‘laugh’ and his letters home hint at the jollity in his life while training. However, he was now “in front of the front line” with orders not to pull back under any circumstances. A German shell landed near the dugout and shrapnel hit one of his men who was on sentry duty. His poem “The Sentry” is an account of his time in the dugout.

 

In March Owen received minor injuries after falling into a cellar in the dark but was back on the front line in April. In May he was hit by a shell explosion at Savy Bank and spent several days in a railway embankment. The same explosion killed his best friend ‘Cock Robin’ and this had a devastating impact on him. When Owen was rescued his colleagues noticed that he was behaving in a strange manner and he was diagnosed with shell shock.

 

In the early years of the war, senior officers did not recognise shell shock and some men were executed for cowardice as a result. However, as the war moved on shell shock became a recognised disorder. Owen was later evacuated from the war front. In June, Owen convalesced in Craiglockhart War Hospital near Edinburgh under the supervision of Dr. A J Brock.

 

While some hospitals used electric shock therapy to treat shell shock, Brock did not. He believed in occupational therapy. Men under him did gardening, looked after animals etc. Brock encouraged Owen to write. He became editor of the hospital’s own magazine, “The Hydra”. Brock wanted Owen to rediscover his creativity. When Brock found out that Owen wrote poetry, he encouraged him to continue with this while in hospital.

 

It was while Owen was in hospital that he met Siegfried Sassoon. Sassoon read his poetry and encouraged him to continue with it. While convalescing, Owen wrote much of the poetry for which he is famous, including ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’. As a result of his friendship with Sassoon, he met and communicated with men such as Robert Graves, H G Wells and Arnold Bennett. While he seemingly got on well with these men, he did not befriend the female poet Jessie Pope, whose jingoistic poetry extolling the virtues of gloriously dying for your country was anathema to Owen. 

 

His relationship with Sassoon fundamentally changed the way he wrote poetry. Owen was in awe of Sassoon as was shown when Sassoon changed the title of one of Owen’s most famous poems. Owen had used the title “Anthem to Dead Youth” because of the finality of what so many young men could expect. On the original, Sassoon crossed out the word “Dead” and replaced it with “Doomed”. Owen accepted the change seemingly without question and the poem became “Anthem for Doomed Youth”. Sassoon also gave Owen a simple piece of advice with regards to writing poetry: “Sweat your guts out.”

 

In the spring of 1918, Owen released a short book of the poems he had written. The preface to the collection starts: “This book is not about heroes.” The preface also contains: “My subject is war and the pity of war; the poetry is in the pity.” The poems in the collection were blunt and told about warfare as it was, not sparing the reader nor glossing over the nastiness of what Owen had observed. While well received by the literary world, it would be many more years before these poems received the acclaim that they now get.

 

In June 1918 Owen was past fit and he rejoined his regiment and in August as the war was moving towards it end, he was sent to France.

 

Owen was awarded the Military Cross for bravery while in action near Amiens. His citation read:

 

For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty in the attack on the Fonsomme Line on 1st/2nd October 1918. On the company commander becoming a casualty he assumed command and showed fine leadership and resisted a heavy counter-attack. He personally manipulated a captured enemy machine gun in an isolated position and inflicted considerable losses on the enemy. Throughout he behaved most gallantly.”



 

Wilfred Owen was killed on November 4th while leading his men into battle at the Sambre-Oise Canal. His unit had been ordered to cross the canal and engage the enemy. He had been told that there should be “no retirement under any circumstances.” His unit tried to cross the canal on cork pontoons and they were cut to pieces by well dug in German machine guns.

 

Wilfred Owen is buried at the CWGC cemetery at Ors. He was 25 when he died.

 

His parents received news of his death on November 11th – Armistice Day.

 

The poems of Wilfred Owen are well known but he has not found total support from those in the same ‘profession’. Owen’s was posthumously criticised for immersing the reader in nothing but pity and some, such as Adrian Caesar, believed that all Owen did was to concentrate on the misery of war and failed to examine other aspects of warfare such as comradeship and acts of bravery. As a result, Caesar wrote that his poems had “an air of unremitting artificiality” about them. In 1936, W B Yeats deliberately omitted Owen from an entry in the ‘Oxford Book of Modern Verse’ believing that Owen only had one story to tell. Yeat’s also believed that Owen had been too concerned about his own personal advancement to make his poems truly authentic about life for soldiers in World War One. However, the anti-war movement of the early 1960’s latched onto his poems and just over 45 years after his death he found the fame his mother had so desired for him.



http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/clear.gifRupert Brooke

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Rupert Brooke was a famous poet from World War One. Brooke was for years probably the most pre-eminent war poet from that era and was feted along with the likes of Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon.

 

Rupert Brooke was born on August 3rd 1887. His father was a teacher at Rugby school and Brooke was to spend five years there. He gained a reputation for being artistic but also as someone who excelled at sport. In 1906 Brooke won a scholarship to King’s College, Cambridge. A contemporary of his at King’s, Frances Cornford, described Brooke as “a young Apollo”. He had a glittering array of friends at Cambridge – E M Forster, Virginia Woolf and Cornford. He knew Hugh Dalton and for a while dabbled in socialist politics.

 

In 1910 he stood in for his recently deceased father at Rugby. He worked at the school for a term and then returned to Cambridge to continue his work on English authors. When he was not doing this he travelled and wrote poetry.  His first collection of poems was published in December 1911, and simply called “Poems”.

 

In 1912 Brookes spent more time travelling in Europe. After recovering from a mystery illness that caused him to return to Rugby, Brookes continued his travels and went to Berlin. Here he wrote ‘The Sentimental Exile’. His friend Edward Marsh persuaded Brookes to change the title to ‘The Old Vicarage, Grantchester’ and it became his most famous pre-war poem.

 

Brooke was awarded a fellowship from King’s College in March 1913 for his dissertation on Webster. Between May 1913 and June 1914 he travelled around the world for the ‘Westminster Gazette’, which paid him £4 a time for his impressions of the various countries he visited – Canada, America, various Pacific islands and New Zealand. He wrote fifteen articles for the ‘Westminster Gazette’ and when he returned he found that his literary star shone brightly and he was very much the centre of attention in London’s literary scene.

 

However, in June war with Germany seemed inevitable. His long-term friend Edward Marsh now worked for Winston Churchill at the Admiralty. Marsh introduced Brookes to Churchill and the First Lord of the Admiralty offered to help Brookes get a commission. Brookes could not make up his mind but decided that it was his duty to do so – “If Armageddon is on, I suppose one should be there.”

 

Brookes got a commission in the Royal Naval Division – a land based unit. In late September Brookes did some training in Kent and in October, along with his platoon, he embarked for France. His unit, the Anson Battalion, Royal Naval Division, was ordered to move into Belgium to help stem the German advance on Antwerp. They came up against a flow of fleeing Belgian soldiers and refugees. Brookes and his men were temporarily based at a chateau at Vieux-Dieu. After they had moved out to some Belgian trenches, the chateau was hit by German artillery. The whole unit was ordered to withdraw and after catching a train to Ostend, they made their way back to Dover by October 9th. It had not been a particularly glorious introduction to the war.

 

The writings of Brookes at this time in the war were typically patriotic. He wrote that fighting the Germans was what God wanted him to do; he considered his previous ‘life’ of study and travelling as frivolous. In particular he felt that the Belgian people had been wronged by the German government and set out to correct this wrong.

 

Brooke’s spent the November 1914 at Blandford in Dorset. He spent his time training. When Brookes was not doing this, he wrote sonnets. Over the New Year of 1914/1915, Brookes stayed at Walmer Castle in Kent or back at Rugby. In February 1915, while recovering from a feverish cold, Brookes spent nine days recovering at 10, Downing Street.

 

On February 20th 1915, Brookes found out that his unit was bound for Gallipoli. He wrote, “I have never been so happy.” It seems that the whole idea of fighting to relieve Constantinople appealed to the romantic side in him. However, he and his men never reached Gallipoli. After various stop-offs and delays that included a visit to the Pyramids. Brookes landed at Lemnos. He fell ill and the medical staff attached to his unit diagnosed an infection caused by a mosquito bite. Despite help from a French medical team, nothing could be done for Brookes and he died on April 23rd 1915. Three days later Winston Churchill wrote in ‘The Times’:

 

He was all that one would wish England’s noblest sons to be in the days when no sacrifice but the most precious is acceptable



Siegfried Sassoon

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Siegfried Sassoon was one of the great poets from World War One. The poetry from the likes of Sassoon and Wilfred Owen seemed to many to be an apt summary of the horrors that many had experienced during the war.

 

Siegfried Sassoon was born on September 8th 1886 in Kent. Born into a reasonably well-off family, Sassoon was educated at Marlborough College and Clare College, Cambridge University where he studied Law and History. However, he left university before graduating but had discovered a love for the poetry of Tennyson and Yeats. Up until the outbreak of the war, Sassoon spent his time living a life of leisure – fox hunting, playing cricket and riding point-to-point. Encouraged by Edward Marsh to write poetry, Sassoon moved to London to immerse himself in literature. He rented out an apartment and in July 1914 met Rupert Brooke there. Though he was short of money and soon in debt, it was the type of experience that he was looking for.

 

However, the war changed all this.

 

Sassoon enlisted on August 2nd 1914. He joined the Sussex Yeomanry. However, while training he had an accident riding a horse that resulted in a badly broken right arm, which delayed his move to the front. After recovering from this, he was given a commission in the Royal Welch Fusiliers (May 1915) and as a 2nd Lieutenant he served with both the 1st and 2nd Battalions. His poetry from this time tends to be patriotic and comments on the nobler aspects of war. In later years he was to criticise these poems as being too glorifying.

 

The death of his brother at Gallipoli in November 1915 and a good friend, David Thomas in March 1916, brought home to Sassoon the full impact of war. However, rather than adopt a passive approach, the two deaths seemed to have spurred Sassoon on to what can only be described as acts of revenge. He went out on patrol in No-Man’s-Land when no patrols were planned and such acts of recklessness led to him gaining the nickname ‘Mad Jack’ from his men. Sassoon wrote about longing to meet a German patrol and attacking it with grenades and cudgels.

 

Such dangerous acts were only curbed by Sassoon being sent to the Fourth Army School at Flixécourt for four weeks. These four weeks away from the front line calmed down Sassoon. In late June 1916, he was awarded the Military Cross for his bravery and leadership in bringing back to British trenches men who had been wounded in a raid on a German trench. The death from his injuries of one of these men, Corporal O’Brien, deeply affected Sassoon who had known O’Brien for some time.

 

Sassoon played no part in the Battle of the Somme, which started on the day after he received his Military Cross. His unit was held in reserve at Kingston Road. Sassoon caught trench fever and was sent home by a sympathetic doctor who had just read about his MC in ‘The Times’. After convalescing at home, he was passed fit on December 4th and sent back to France in February 1917. However, within two days he caught German measles and spent ten days in a hospital in Rouen.    

 

Sassoon’s unit was held in reserve for the Battle of Arras but he was wounded at Tunnel Trench during the Battle of Scarpe where a German sniper shot him between the shoulders.

 

It was during this period of convalescence that the patriotism and enthusiasm that he had shown in the early years of the war started to disappear. He wrote poems that condemned senior officers and the way they ran the war. Sassoon also wrote his ‘Declaration’ in this time and sent it – a statement of wilful defiance – to his colonel. Fully expecting to be punished for this, he was only saved by Robert Graves who also served in the Welch Fusiliers. Graves managed to persuade the higher echelons of the Welch Fusiliers that rather than punish Sassoon, they should offer him support. As a result he was sent to Craiglockhart War Hospital in Scotland (which Sassoon called ‘Dottyville’) suffering from shell shock. While here Sassoon wrote a lot of poetry and also met Wilfred Owen who was also convalescing. It was Sassoon who encouraged Owen to continue with his efforts. After four months convalescing at Craiglockhart, Sassoon was deemed fit enough to return to General Service.

 

After a short spell in Palestine (January to February 1918), Sassoon was posted to France where he served on the front line. Despite being a company commander, he continued to show some of the recklessness that he had shown in 1915. Along with a corporal he attacked a German position at St. Floris and was wounded in the head (July 13th 1918). He was invalided back to England to convalesce. Sassoon was given indefinite sick leave and, despite maintaining his commission, he never went on active service again.

 

In March 1919, Sassoon resigned his commission and left the army.

 

Most of his war poems were comments on what life was like at home in England amongst those who were not experiencing the horrors of the war in France and Belgium. In particular he saved some of his greatest criticism for those who he believed were profiting from the war though a few of his poems were openly critical of those who commanded the army.

 

After the war, Sassoon spent a great deal of time writing his autobiography. The six volumes took from 1928 to 1945 to complete.

 

He died on September 1st 1967.


Act of Willful Defiance

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Appalled by the slaughter on the trenches, Siegfried Sassoon wrote his Act of Willful Defiance as a statement that he was not going to return to arms. Sassoon had gained a reputation as a poet by the time he took this decision so if such an act gained mass publicity, especially as it was titled 'Willful Defiance', it would have been a major embarrassment to the army and government. Sassoon did, in fact, put himself in danger of being court-martialled and if found guilty could have faced severe punishment. His friend and fellow officer Rober Graves persuaded the military hierarchy that Sassoon was suffering from shell-shock and he was sent to recover in Scotland where he met Wilfred Owen who was recovering in the same hospital. It was here at Craiglockheart that Sassoon urged the unknown Owen to put his heart and soul into his poems.

 

"I am making this statement as an act of willful defiance of military authority because I believe that the war is being deliberately prolonged by those who have the power to end it. I am a soldier, convinced that I am acting on behalf of soldiers. I believe that the war upon which I entered as a war of defence and liberation has now become a war of aggression and conquest. I believe that the purposes for which I and my fellow soldiers entered upon this war should have been so clearly stated as to have made it impossible to change them and that had this been done the objects which actuated us would now be attainable by negotiation.



I have seen and endured the sufferings of the troops and I can no longer be a party to prolonging these sufferings for ends which I believe to be evil and unjust. I am not protesting against the conduct of the war, but against the political errors and insincerities for which the fighting men are being sacrificed.

On behalf of those who are suffering now, I make this protest against the deception which is being practiced upon them; also I believe it may help to destroy the callous complacency with which the majority of those at home regard the continuance of agonies which they do not share and which they have not have enough imagination to realise."
Robert Graves

Robert Graves became one of the foremost poets of World War One. Graves went on to achieve even greater fame not through his poetry but as a result of his book about his war times experiences “Goodbye To All That”. Along with Siegfried Sassoon, Wilfred Owen and Rupert Brookes, Robert Graves is considered to have been one of the few poets who were capable of putting onto paper the sheer horror of trench warfare.

 

Robert Graves was born on July 28th 1895. His father, ‘A P’, was from Irish stock while his mother, Amalia (Amy), had a German family. Whereas his father was seen as being witty, light-hearted and amenable, his mother was very serious and viewed by those who knew her as lacking a sense of humour.

 

After a series of prep schools, Graves went to Charterhouse. While at this school, Graves became very influenced by a teacher there called George Mallory – the man who died in 1924 in his ascent of Mount Everest. Mallory imparted in Graves a love of literature, and poetry in particular. Graves wrote poetry for the school magazine, which he later co-edited.

 

Graves won a classical exhibition to St. John’s College, Oxford University. In his spare time he developed his poetry or, encouraged by Mallory, he developed a keen interest in climbing and mountaineering.

 

In 1914, when war was declared, Graves gained a commission in the Royal Welch Fusiliers – using his time in the Charterhouse OTC to justify this. His war experience started by looking after interned aliens at a camp in Lancaster. Though Graves wanted to go to France, his commanding officer believed that he was not yet of the right calibre to embark on such a journey having only recently come out of school. A boxing match against a hardened NCO convinced his c/o that Graves was, perhaps, now ready for war.

 

However, he was not sent until May 1915 and he served with the 2nd Welsh Regiment. Graves commanded a platoon of forty men. According to the stories told in ‘Goodbye To All That’, one of his men was a 63 years old survivor of the Boer War while several were boy soldiers aged 15. In July 1915, Graves was sent to join the Royal Welch Fusiliers at Laventie. While here, he recorded in his book that the officers in the RWF failed to take the war seriously and saw that to them it was far more important to keep up regimental traditions. These traditions Graves referred to as “childish”.

 

The first real war experience that Graves had was at the Battle of Loos. What Graves referred to as a “bloody balls-up” resulted in only five company officers from the RWF surviving. The poem ‘The Dead Fox Hunter, In Memory of Captain L. Samson’ was written about this battle.

 

In November 1915 Graves met Siegfried Sassoon at Locon, north of Cambrin. Sassoon was to write about Graves in ‘Memoirs of an Infantry Soldier’ where he appeared as David Cromlech – a man who believed everyone should know his opinion and whose appearance was ‘deplorably untidy’. Despite writing that Cromlech would grow up into a “bumptious young prig”, Sassoon greatly respected Graves. While at the front they tried to forget about the war by discussing literature, especially poetry.

 

After leave when he spent time in the hills around Harlech, Graves returned to France on June 27th 1916 with the rank of captain. He arrived too late to be involved in the first days of the Battle of the Somme. In the second week of July he moved in to the Somme battlefield – near to Mametz Wood where the 38th Welsh Division had suffered many casualties. He had to camp near to where many bodies still lay on the battlefield – “a certain cure for the lust of blood”.

 

On July 19th, Graves was severely injured at High Wood when a German shell exploded and fragments from it hit Graves in the chest. Graves was, in fact, given up for dead and he survived being buried as a war casualty when he was seen breathing while being carried to his burial. His parents even received a letter informing them of his death – one day after receiving a letter from Graves himself informing them that he was recovering from his wounds. The whole incident is recalled in the poem “Escape”.

 

The wounds Graves received at High Wood did a great deal to test his nerves. Graves was pronounced as being unfit for duty and was given time on leave. He was sent to Oxford University where he worked as an instructor in the University Officer Training Battalion.  During this time he met up with Sassoon just as the latter was publishing his “Wilful Defiance”. Graves used his contacts in the RWF to ensure that Sassoon was treated as someone with what would now be referred to as post-traumatic stress disorder. Had Graves not done this, Sassoon could have been in very serious trouble and could have faced a court martial.  

 

While Graves is best known for “Goodbye To All That”, he also wrote poetry that showed very clearly his close association to the men he led – and to those who died. In 1916, he had published “Over the Brazier” and in the following year “Fairies and Fusiliers”. After the war Graves effectively ignored these works.



 

Post-war, Graves found fame for his autobiography and for ‘I Claudius’ and ‘Claudius the God’.

 

Robert Graves died in 1985.
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