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Remembered Today:

Xmas Truce 1914 Querry


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Is it true that the Germans had the British rations of M & V {Meat and Vegtables} while the British on the other hand got the German Beer and tobacco? Did the British get the better trade? :):P

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In their book Christmas Truce: the Western Front December 1914, Malcolm Brown and Shirley Seaton mention numerous accounts of food and other items being exchanged. Here is one extract:

When morning came everyone climbed out of their trenches. Both sides shook hands with each other, briefly made peace and exchanged gifts. We were given corned beef, tea and cigarettes, etc, which the English had a-plenty. They for their part were mad about our cigars.

So wrote the German soldier who described his Christmas in the trenches as seeming like a fairy tale. Up and down No Man's Land men bearing gifts to the enemy, with bully beef, Maconochie's stew, Tickler's jam, cake, biscuits, chocolate, tea, cigarettes, rum and Christmas puddings offered by the British, and cigars, sweets, nuts, chocolates, sausages, sauerkraut, coffee, cognac, schnapps and even wine offered by the Germans. (p.99, 1984 edition)

The book also contains comments about the quality of the exchanged goods, although I'm sure those thoughts were a secondary consideration for most men who were probably happy to get a short respite from the tedious and dangerous conditions of trench life.

Chris

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