Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Portents: August 1914

July 15th, 2014 by Vader

One afternoon a crowd in the Bois de Boulogne gawked at an eagle wheeling high in the sky, and debated its significance. Was this a bronze symbol of Napoleon, or the family bird of the Hohenzollerns? Instead of either it proved to be a vulture, escaped from a zoo.

–Max Hastings
Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War

Good historians know they are creating literature, not publishing scientific papers. The best historians do this with a sense of irony and mordant wit that must not be mistaken for comedy or satire.


Comments (4)
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July 15th, 2014 08:49:36

July 15, 2014

Reading this now. I am enjoying it, if one can be said to enjoy such a thing.

July 15, 2014

I’ve quite enjoyed (that word!) Hasting’s writings.

July 16, 2014

I have just got to the passage where a British officer praises his men for their stupidity, which keeps them from realizing the real danger they face, thus allowing them to fight bravely.

July 16, 2014

We’ve always been at war with Eastasia.

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