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Journal, 17 Nov. 1915-13 Mar. 1916

Reference Code: GBR/0012/MS Add.9852/1/4

Scope and Contents

The volume is a ruled notebook and mainly comprises diary entries.

Significant entries include: /5r. descriptions of the journey to France and to base camp at Etaples; /5v. the march to Festubert; Robert Graves /6r and his poetry /7r; / 7r-8r. the march to Bourecq, with descriptions of his fellow soldiers; /8r. his wish for 'a genuine taste of the horrors'; descriptions of Bourecq /9r, Montagne /9v and the Somme Valley /13v; /17v. a brigade field day between Lincheux and Fricourt; /21r. his appointment as Transport Officer; /21v. a visit to Amiens; /23v. the march to Morlancourt; /27v. his battalion at the Front Line near Fricourt; /28r. notice of leave taken in England; /36r. impressions on leaving Southampton.

The volume also includes:

- notes from military briefing meetings: /29r-31v.

- drafts of poetry: /13r. 'A Child's Faith', later called 'A Poet's Faith' or 'Simpleton'; /13v. 'A Man's Faith', later called 'Brothers'; /14v. 'The Prince of Peace', later called 'The Prince of Wounds'; /15v. 'Testament'; /17v. 'To Victory'; /19v. 'Druids'; /20r. 'January'; /20v. 'Glory: 1916'; /25r 'In the Pink'; /25v. 'Love' and 'The Rainbow'; /26r. 'The Silver Stems'; and 'Falling Asleep'; /26v-27r. 'Pastoral'.

- a sketch of a man leaning on a table, largely erased: /3r.

- lists of members of his ?battalion: /38r.

- quotations: /4v. Walter de la Mare's 'Music' and Gordon Bottomley's 'Remorse' and 'Youth'; poems by Robert Graves: /32r. 'Willaree'; /32v. 'The Morning before the Battle'; /33r. 'On Finding myself a Soldier'; /33v. 'Ghost Music'; /34r. 'In the Wilderness'; and /34v. 'The Face of the Heavens'.

- acquaintances' contact details: /1v-4r; /39v-40r.

N.B. Sassoon wrote from both ends of this notebook; from ff. /32r-40v entries resume from the opposite end. Enclosures are to be found in a separate envelope. The foliation is the archivist's.


  • Creation: 17 Nov. 1915-13 Mar. 1916


Conditions Governing Access

This notebook and its enclosures have been digitised and can be viewed in full on the Cambridge Digital Library. The original items are currently unavailable for consultation due to their poor physical condition.


1 volume(s) (1 volume (small 16mo, maroon morocco, front pocket, 40 ff.); 1 envelope paper) : paper

1 envelope(s) (1 volume (small 16mo, maroon morocco, front pocket, 40 ff.); 1 envelope paper)

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Fragile: binding is cracked and loose.

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
West Road
Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom