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Terry_Reeves

King George V and the Great War

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Terry_Reeves

Book different. The author, Alexandra Churchill, was a member of this forum. From the excellent Helion stable:

 

http://tinyurl.com/y7wsggvp

 

TR

Edited by Terry_Reeves

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Gareth Davies

Hopefully the book mentions that 100 years ago today HM King George became Colonel in Chief of the Tank Corps.  

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Marilyne

I have and read her book on the Somme: 141 days and 141 lives. It's a stunning collection of stories and if "George V" meets the same expectations, I'm very much looking forward to it.

 

M.

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Captain RHW

Looks very good.  I have spent a bit of time recently looking at Edward VIII and George VI's record.  Edward admitted he hadn't earned his MC but is generally thought to have done the best he could given the restrictions on his involvement. 

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The Scorer

I've just finished reading this, and I think that it's a very good book.

 

The writing style takes a little getting used to, as it's sort of "third person", as it describes what the King did, but also describes his feelings whilst he was doing these things (I hope that makes sense, as I'm not really sure how to describe it!). It's a very detailed book, giving a lot of information about what the King did, where he did it, who he met and what he thought about it - but it all serves to illustrate how busy a person he was during the First World War, something of which I knew very little. It also goes into detail of the Royal Family's financial assistance to Funds and other good causes, which is also interesting, as it shows how wealthy they were, even allowing for the difference in the comparative value of the pound from then to now.

 

There's a lot about his relationship with his family, especially David, the Prince of Wales and later King Edward VII and Bertie, later King George VI. The former seemed to have been a constant cause of worry to the King and Queen Mary, as he simply didn't want to be the heir to the throne and only actually wanted to be in the Front Line with an active role. Bertie, on the other hand, was the opposite and did have an active role when he health allowed. There's also some very moving accounts of the illnesses of their youngest son, Prince George, who was ill for much of his life and died very young.

 

I have to disappoint Gareth D, though; there isn't a mention of the King becoming the Commander in Chief of the Tank Corps. There is, though, a piece about his visit to a Tank Factory where he spent a lot of time climbing in and around tanks and asking lots of technical questions. It's not the only time this is said in the book, but it is stressed that he understood what he was asking and also the answers he was given, no matter who complicated the subject might have been.    

 

One other aspect which is a constant theme is the King's relationship with politicians and vice versa. Some he got on very well with (Asquith) but others he doesn't seem to have had any connection with (Lloyd George). It was a constant worry to him that as a constitutional Monarch he didn't have any real say in what his government decided to do, but he reserved the right to comment on their plans and to offer advice. LG, of course, didn't want him to do either, and there are several stories of the King finding out what his government were going to do (or doing) after they'd done it.

 

I would recommend this to anyone who wants an in depth history of this period.

 

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Dai Bach y Sowldiwr

There was a great quote from the King's diaries, on the Today programme this morning , illustrating that although he lived an interesting life his diaries were incredibly dull. Whether this reflected his true personality, I don't know, but he was a keen philatelist and collector of snuff-boxes.

It said:

 

" 28th June 1914. The poor Archduke [Franz-Ferdinand] and his wife were assassinated this morning in Serbia .They were in a motor car.

Stamps after lunch.

Bed at 11:30"

 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m0001phx at about 1:39:45

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nigelcave

Assassinations were remarkably common in the couple of decades before the Great War; I think the interest in stamps shows the correct level of decorum.

 

His diary habits must have been catching. The House Diary here has, for 5th August 1914, 'Brother Buller to the Dentist, Loughborough: morning. Great Britain declares war on Germany.'

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Captain RHW

What’s obvious in hindsight isn’t always going to be obvious at the time. How many people in Britain thought the assassination of some random duke in the Balkans would lead to 750,000 British being killed? 

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Kimberley John Lindsay

Dear Captain RHW,

Quite so!

Kindest regards,

Kim.

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Michelle Young

Looking at a few reviews, bad editing, grammatical errors,  and poor proof reading are mentioned, marring the book in people's eyes. Can anyone who has read this comment please? I'm interested in the subject and might ask for it as a Yuletide gift. 

 

Many thanks 

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Martin Bennitt
1 hour ago, Michelle Young said:

Looking at a few reviews, bad editing, grammatical errors,  and poor proof reading are mentioned, marring the book in people's eyes. Can anyone who has read this comment please? I'm interested in the subject and might ask for it as a Yuletide gift. 

 

Many thanks 

 

I have not looked at this one but it doesn't surprise me. Unfortunately I have found it fairly typical of this publisher. It's just something one has to put up with, I suppose.

 

Cheers Martin B

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Chris_Baker

I have a copy of this for sale at present, should anyone be interested: 

 

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