St George’s Day 1915

This morning the weather in the Aegean was fine and clear. Admiral de Robeck therefore ordered the smaller craft in the harbour of Mudros to move to Tenedos — the first step towards assembling the fleet for landings at Gallipoli on 25th.  The French force and the Royal Naval Division were already at Skyros.

This afternoon, Sub Lieutenant Rupert Brooke of the RND died of sepsis in a French hospital ship off Skyros and was buried by his friends at 11.00 p.m. in an olive grove high on the island. The news soon spread at home. George Calderon had done his best to help Brooke get his curtain-raiser Lithuania performed, Brooke had written to him about it from Canada in 1913, and perhaps after Brooke’s return via Tahiti George and he had discussed their respective experiences of the island.

Today Francis, the twenty-two-year-old son of George’s close friend Sir Henry Newbolt, was wounded at Ypres and sent back to Britain with severe shell shock. He was with the 3rd Battalion Ox and Bucks and had written to George on 6 December 1914. Doubtless George soon heard the news on the regimental grapevine. He had known Francis and his sister Celia since they were children.

Next entry: 24 April 1915


About Patrick Miles

I am a writer who specialises in Anton Chekhov and is writing a biography of George Calderon.
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