Che Great War EDITORS H. W. WILSON J. A. HAMMERTON EDITORIAL§ J S m X Y/ER often the editors receive letters from readers of The Great War asking if it is possible to state definitely the number of volumes in which the work will be completed. Now this is a question to which they are not in so good a position to reply as— let us say— the Kaiser might b !Thee end of the war must clearly bethe determining factor in the completion of our pictorial history of it. There is however reason to believe without falling into undue optimism that sOmetime next year will seethe glad termination of the tremendous conflict. Ji Complete History /"^UR editorial policy has been designed to maintain the narrative as closely as possible to the issuing of the official data of the chief events so that we maybe able to bring our history to completion very speedily after the declaration of peace. Moreover the recent alteration of the number of parts to the volume whereby twenty now constitute a volume instead of sixteen as formerly will have the effect of keeping the whole work within easily manageable dimensions. A NUMBER of readers have suggested the making and supplying of a book-case to contain the complete work. This is a matter that is having the attention of the publishers and later on it is quite possible they maybe in a position to make some very attractive offer to The Great War subscribers but at present when prices of all materials are so inflated and there is so great a scarcity of labour it is not practicable to make any definite announcement. Official Photographs \GREAT change has taken place in the pictorial recording of events since the earlier numbers of The Great W a rand the attention of our subscribers is directed to the fact that many of our issues are now illustrated in large part from official photographs, made available not only by the British Government, but also by the Canadian Government and the war- record departments of the French Italian Belgian, and Serbian Governments. A T the beginning of the war it will be remembered, numerous beautiful and thrillingly interesting photographs were speedily. obtainable by means of the various agencies which the pictorial press was able to establish then came a time when the authorities seemed to look with disfavour on eveiy attempt to give pictorial expression to events that were happening at the Front and our editorial efforts in that direction were greatly hampered. The French Government with much better sense than our own as to the importance of making public these pictorial records was the first to establish an official department for the express purpose of supplying photographs of actual war scenes undertaken official direction. 'C'OR some months now our own War Office has very effectively carried out an arrangement whereby the services of the most expert photographers who previously worked for private agencies have now been secured for the official photographic record and an abundance of interesting pictorial documents is now at the service of those of us whose work it is to record the progress of the war. One result of this arrangement has been considerably to enhance the pictorial value of The Great W a rand in some of our forthcoming numbers we shall be able to illustrate our chapters entirely from official sources. The Jutland Numbers T theN present number we begin Mr. Edward Wright’s brilliant narrative of “The Closing Victories ”at Verdun which will be concluded in Part 115. Mr. Wright, by the way in conjunction with Mr. H. W. Wilson has now completed avery remarkable and authoritative historical account of the great Jutland Battle. This splendid narrative we shall begin in our next part and a large number of most interesting and illuminating charts and diagrams have been prepared for Tit. canT safely be said that our readers will find in this record of the Jutland Battle— which by the way is divided into five different chapters— the finest historical account that is likely to be obtainable for many years to come. Mr. Edward Wright is also busily engaged on the narrative of the great Somme battles, which of course will be effectively illustrated by the wonderful official photographs that have been everywhere seen in the famous film. Backward Glances A SOMEWHAT curious criticism was received by the editors the other day from a reader who complained that he did not like our publishing certain chapters in The Great War which took him back unexpectedly to 1914. There is only one possible- way to present a history of such a complicated period of time as that which the war is covering and that is by carrying forward the various streams of narrative independently and whenever necessary in order correctly to appraise events of recent occurrence to recount the earlier steps of the war thus establishing in the readers mind a sense of their relative importance. T J T STORY is not merely the recording of events from day today. That is moreno than the work of an uninspired annalist. No history that ever was written went forward from year to year without ever a glance backward. In an early number of The Great War we shall again be turning back to 1914 or earlier when Mr. Robert Machrays next contribution upon which he is busily engaged at present appears. It will trace the origin of Rumanias attitude to the war and show clearly why she eventually marched with the Allies. The Editors The Great War. Part 114
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