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A Swiss postcard of 'The European War' in 1914. The Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary face enemies to the east, west, and south. Germany is fighting the war it tried to avoid, battling Russia to the east and France to the west. Germany had also hoped to avoid fighting England which came to the aid of neutral (and prostrate) Belgium, and straddles the Channel. Austria-Hungary also fights on two fronts, against Russia to the east and Serbia and Montenegro to the south. Italy, the third member of the Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, declared neutrality, and looks on. Other neutral nations include Spain, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Romania, Bulgaria, and Albania. Japan enters from the east to battle Germany. The German Fleet stays close to port in the North and Baltic Seas while a German Zeppelin targets England. The Austro-Hungarian Fleet keeps watch in the Adriatic. Turkey is not represented, and entered the war at the end of October, 1914; Italy in late May, 1915.
Text:
Der Europäische Krieg
The European War
Reverse:
Kriegskarte No. 61. Verlag K. Essig, Basel
Kunstanstalt (Art Institute) Frobenius A.G. Basel

A Swiss postcard of 'The European War' in 1914. The Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary face enemies to the east, west, and south. Germany is fighting the war it tried to avoid, battling Russia to the east and France to the west. Germany had also hoped to avoid fighting England which came to the aid of neutral (and prostrate) Belgium, and straddles the Channel. Austria-Hungary also fights on two fronts, against Russia to the east and Serbia and Montenegro to the south. Italy, the third member of the Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, declared neutrality, and looks on. Other neutral nations include Spain, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Romania, Bulgaria, and Albania. Japan enters from the east to battle Germany. The German Fleet stays close to port in the North and Baltic Seas while a German Zeppelin targets England. The Austro-Hungarian Fleet keeps watch in the Adriatic. Turkey is not represented, and entered the war at the end of October, 1914; Italy in late May, 1915.

Image text

Der Europäische Krieg

The European War

Reverse:

Kriegskarte No. 61. Verlag K. Essig, Basel

Kunstanstalt (Art Institute) Frobenius A.G. Basel

Other views: Larger, Larger

Saturday, November 9, 1918

"Le 31 de mois d'Août 1914

Je partis de Deauville un peu avant minuit

Dans la petite auto de Rouveyre



Avec son chauffeur nous étions trois



Nous dîmes adieu à toute une époque

Des géants furieux se dressaient sur l'Europe

Les aigles quittaient leur aire attendant le soleil

Les poissons voraces montaient des abîmes

Les peuples accouraient pour se connaître à fond

Les morts tremblaient de peur dans leurs sombres demeures"

Quotation Context

Beginning of 'La Petite Auto' by French poet, author, and critic Guillaume Apollinaire, an artilleryman, wounded in the head by shrapnel in March 1916. Never fully recovered, he died of influenza November 9, 1918 at the height of the pandemic. The first declaration of war of World War I was that of Austria-Hungary on Serbia on July 28, 1914, a month before Apollinaire and his friend Rouveyre set out for Paris. The poem begins



The Little Car



The 31st of the month of August 1914

I left Deauville a little before midnight

In Rouveyre's little car



With his chauffeur, we were three



We said goodbye to an entire age

Furious giants stood upright over Europe

Eagles abandoned their aeries waiting for the sun

Voracious fish rose from the depths

Peoples flocked to understand each other to the core

The dead trembled from fear in their dark dwellings

Source

Calligrammes: Poems of Peace and War (1913–1916)Guillaume Apollinaire by Guillaume Apollinaire, page 104, copyright © 1980 by the Regents of the University of California, publisher: University of California Press, publication date: 2004

Tags

1918-11-09, 1918, November, La Petite Auto, 1914-08-31, poetry, poem, European war