School News – Christmas 1916

SUMMER TERM, 1916.

Monday, July 10th – We heard that Margaret Stevens-Guille had passed Responsions, and that Jessie Flemming had gained a 1st in History at Oxford.
Miss Douglas proposed that we, as a School, should join the War Savings Association (see special notice).
Monday, July 17th, was the date of the first performance of the Pageant of Empire for the League of Honour and a few other friends, July 18th and 19th for all who paid one shilling, and on Tuesday afternoon for wounded soldiers from both hospitals in Salisbury. The proceeds on the two “paying nights” amounted to 28l. 11s. 5d. for the Star and Garter Home for totally disabled soldiers and sailors.
July 24th. The School Concert took place.
July 25th. The March Playing Tournament was held. Seventeen girls entered, and Lilian King was the best. – Miss Westlake and Miss Gillian judged.
In the morning Miss Mixer’s classes gave a very delightful Rhythm Exhibition, to which several parents came.
Wednesday, July 26th. Mark Reading.
Miss Douglas told us that Yvonne Leys is to be head of the School. The names of some of the Forms have been altered. Rules containing some differences in the clothes’ list were read.
Cloak Room Marks. Sp. VI., Matric. VI., Extra V. and Lower VB, had not lost a mark, and share the picture.
Form Room Marks. Sp. VI., Lower VI., Matric. VI., Upper V. Lower IV., and Ill., share the cup, with no marks lost.
Finished Books. Sp. VA was best with 74 per cent., Lower VI. being second with 73 per cent.
Tennis brooches were won by: E. Hudson, V. Leys, M. Howes, P. Wood.
Cricket XI. colours by: D. Collier, H. Capel, K. Sargeaunt, 0. Tregelles, and Y. Leys.
Red Girdles. E. Banham, E. Birney, J. Douglas, N. Maude, P. Newharm, A. Paton, L Pears, H. Poynton, N. Preece, and H. Richards.
Juniors. R. Aldworth, P. Collins, N. Cooper, D. Leys, E. Palgrave, D. Richardson, L. Taylor.
Form Competition. The Senior Cup was won by Upper VI., and the Junior Picture by Form 11.
Milking Badges, given by Captain C. Bathurst, M.P., were presented to the 50 girls who had been through the course, and were certified as efficient by the Instructor. The Badges are of solid silver, about the size of a shilling, but thicker. They bear on one side a cow’s head in relief, with the motto “Pro Patria,” and on the reverse “Milking Test, Godolphin School, Passed by …,” leaving space for each girl to have her name engraved in the middle.
Miss Douglas then spoke of those leaving. The following are the names:­
School House. D. Collier, H. Elam, P. George.
Fawcett House. M. Stevens-Guille, D. Hinxman, W. Poynton, S. Yorke, C. Wilton, N. Cooper.
St. Margaret’s. L. King. D. Harvey-Jones, H. Toms, D. Caton, L. Gunner.
Nelson. B. Bridbe, 0. Tregelles, M. Wood.
New Forest. J. Dennison, B. Niven, M. Campin, I. Pears.
Sarum. H. Williams, V. Joscelyne, H. Brough, H. de Behr, b. Keble, E. Taunton, H. van der Meersch, M. Hardy, H. Swindells.
Lilian King, as head of the School, had a special clap. As Miss Douglas said, we shall miss her very much indeed, for she has given her very best to the School.
The special message which Miss Douglas had for those who were leaving was thee word “Vocation” = call. Some may have a very definite vocation, either to be doctors, or nurses, or to work at any other profession. But the call need not necessarily be away from home, only it will be one to SERVICE. Therefore be ready to answer it, even though it be to humble and trivial duties.
It is hard to say “Goodbye,” but if we all keep that word before us, you who go, and we who stay there will be unity among us, for it is not the shape of our work that matters, but the spirit of it. If we do it “with our might,” then we shall all be ONE.

AUTUMN TERM, 1916.
September 19th. Miss Douglas greeted us at Prayer-time, hoping that everyone felt fresh and ready for work. Speaking of the tone of the School, and for the need of it to go forward, for it can never stand still, she said: “We feel a special need for inspiration this term, having lost so many at the top of the School. This brings a respon­sibility to each one of us, for all can help to make the spirit of the School true and right. I am sure that Yvonne Leys will try to be a really good leader, and that the whole School will back her up.”
We heard that the Susan Esther Wordsworth Scholarship had been equally divided between Margaret Stevens-Guille and Vera Joscelyne.
The new girls this Term are:­
School House: Frances Pinckney, Upper IV.
St. Margaret’s: Decima Dome, Lower VA; Betty Du Buisson, Lower VB; Pearl Malony, Upper IV.; Faith Denny, Lower IV.
Nelson: Mary Cartwright, Upper VB; Kathleen Bridge, Special Parallel; Margery Sargeaunt, Lower IV. (from Sarum).
Fawcett: Vera Greene, Lower VI.; Natalie Lewarne, Upper VB; May Ashford, from Glenside, and Lucy Lock. Lower VA; Margaret Roseveare and Cicely Squire, Lower Vii.; Margaret Stow, Upper IV.
New Forest: Nora Cox, Lower VB.; Mary Trafford, Stephanie Chennells, Lucille Gossage, and Mary Panting, Upper IV.; Margaret Walker, and Molly Shawyer, Lower IV.; Celia Fraser, from Sarum House, II.
Sarum House: Frances Aitken and Judith Buckle, Upper IV. ; Mary Shorland, Lower IV. ; Margaret Symington and Margaret Cochrane, II.; Mary Griffin, Betty Luckham, and Muriel Arnold, from Kindergarten, and Constance Holford, I.
Janet Dennison, who learnt with Miss Ward, gained her L.R.A.M. diploma. She left in the Summer Term, and had been working for it here. It is the first time that a girl has gained this honour from our School.
September 25th. Miss Douglas told us the very sad news that Miss Grace Bagnall is leaving at the end of this Term. It is impossible to say how much we shall all miss her, but she thinks it right that she should go and live with her sisters.
Miss Douglas read a letter from Mr. Veasey, telling her of the sudden death of Mr. Pheasant, the Vicar of St. Andrew’s, Peckham, the part of the Mission which we help specially.
September 27th. Lady Hulse very kindly has given us a picture of the King. It is a beautiful one, and is to go in our gallery of notable people.
September 30th. Commem. Saturday. (See special notice.)
October 4th. We went to see the “Somme Battle Pictures,” which were marvellously vivid, and very interesting.
October 16th. Preparation for the National Mission. (See special notice.)
October 22nd. Miss Tovey, of the Church of England Zenana Society, very kindly came to give us an address on China.
October 27th. The National Mission Day for the whole School. (See special notice.)
October 30th. Miss Jones came to stay, and as Miss Hancock and Miss Steer were away she took part of their work, and was on the Staff till their return.

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Garden Club – Christmas 1916

SUMMER PRIZES.

I. M. Holmes – D. Hinxman – M. Sun
K. Newsom – P.  Du Buisson – B. Medlicott
W. Poynton – B. Buxton

II. J. Chapman N. – N. Randall
P. Clarke – J. Hinxman – C. Harrison
B. Fagge – F. Fagge

III. W. Wort – E. Hudson – P. Word
C. Mackworth – P. Purmewan – M. Rose
H. Elworthy – H. Toms.

Mrs. Leys’ picture, which has formerly been held by the owners of the best cultivated garden, will now be presented every term to the House which gains the highest average of marks for its gardens. It was won last term by Fawcett House.

GARDENING POEM COMPETITION.

Twenty poems were sent in this year, and the Cup has been won by Mary Dalston. The three best poems are printed.

A GARDEN DREAM.

He-led me through the gate of age-old stone,
We stood in sunlight, but I felt the cool
Sweet shadow we had left. Then down the path
Whose red tiles lay so primly ‘twixt the beds
Of fragrant lavender. And still lie led.
The scent of roses (crimson ones) was there,
Although the bushes were a wide lawn’s space
Behind. At last he paused, I, too and stayed.
We laid us down upon the glad green turf,
Our thoughts went upward through the chinks of blue
Between the copper-beech leaves;  then I spoke:
“Who art thou?” and he said, “Ye know me not?”
“The scent of roses, and the gateway’s shade,
The greenness of the grass, and hum of bees,
The tint of flowers silvered by the dew,
The hush of dawn, and evening’s golden peace
The Spirit of this garden; this am I.
The little children know me.”
-Then I awoke.

ULYSSES (Mary Dalston).

GARDENING POEM
(Lines supposed to be written by a prisoner of war in Germany.)

Midsummer’s Night! Oh would I were
Now at home, in the garden there,
For, down the gravelled walks I know
The Pinks and red Carnations grow,
And the Roses, the Roses are in bloom,
Their fragrance piercing through the gloom
Of a summer night. The Willows too,
Are bending low, as Willows do.
To kiss the silent stream below,
Whose sad mysterious waters flow
Silently thence. There ‘neath the gaze
Of the pure pale stars and the golden haze
Of a harvest moon-there, there would I lie
And scan the inscrutable sweep of sky.

Around me comrades sweat and snore
As we herd together on the floor
But I am longing to be there,
Out of this hot and noisome air,
To lie on the mossy river bank
And smell the dewy earth, and dank
Scents of the stream, and see
On the other side of the lawn from me
The lilies shimmering tall and white,
Like silver stars on a frosty night.
And hear the night wind sob in the trees
And sometimes shrilling down the breeze
The Piper’s sweet unearthly notes.
Would I might watch when softly floats
The morning o’er the rim of night,
And scan in the magic misty light
Each pansy’s bright uplifted face.
Then rise, and soft begin to pace
Familiar walks, beside the seas
Of glowing bloom and shrubs and trees.
Oh! on a night like this I’d squander
All that I have, once more to wander
At home, at home in the garden there
Where all is cool and fresh and fair,
In the silent splendid night that brings
So many mystic glorious things.
Around me comrades sweat and snore
Herded like cattle on the floor.

M. B. M.

A GARDEN DREAM

‘Twas in the summer-time – the month of June
When filled was all my garden with delight
And ev’ry living thing raised some sweet tune
Of thankful happiness by day and night
That as I sat among my roses fair
Lulled by the drowsy humming of the bees,
It seemed as though a voice was speaking there
Amid the flow’rs; ’twas just as if the breeze
Had whispered; and the words I heard were these:-

Long, long ago, when Time was young,
Of purest white all roses were;
No prickles from their smooth stems sprung
They were the fairest of the fair.

But one, most fair of all her race,
Each day became more proud and vain
That she possessed such beauteous grace,
And sought o’er all the flow’rs to reign.

The Master the Flowers came,
And standing by the Rose’s side
He spake; for with much grief and shame
He saw, as all, her grievous pride.

“Why keepest thou not my Commands?
Why hastthou not Humility?
Thy beauty is not thine. My Hands
Yea mine, have made and fashioned thee.

“For this thy sin – wear evermore
Sharp thorns upon thy stems and leaves.
Like those that once for all I bore­
Repent – I pardon her that grieves.”

The Rose with shame bent low her head,
And o’er her face there came a flush;
Humbled – was she; remorse and dread
Both did her haughty spirit crush.

Long years have come and passed away,
But every rose her thorns still wears
In mem’ry of that far-off day
Of pride, of pardon, and of tears.

The soft voice ceased, and all was quiet and still,
Except a gentle rustling ‘mid the leaves;
The sun was sinking fast behind the hill,
And swallows flew to nests beneath the eaves.
The night fell fast, and darkness spread her veil
The fleeting hours of day grew less and less;
The whisp’ring roses knew who told that tale,
But I – I knew not – I could only guess.

DOROTHY PERKINS,

Games – Christmas 1916

CRICKET:

July 1st Fawcett beat Sarum on 1st innings by 13 runs.
Sarum: J. Carter 29 runs, V. Leys 15, D. Fanner 10.
Fawcett: M. Holmes 27, J. Chapman 18, U. Armitage 11.
St Margaret’s beat School by 19 runs.
St. Margaret’s: D. Harvey Jones 17, H. Capel 17 and 32, H. Toms 11.
School: C. Mackworth 19, D. Collier 11, P. George 12; C. Fletcher 16.
Nelson beat New Forest by 93 runs.
New Forest: M. Sinclair 28 runs.
Nelson: 0. Tregelles 30, G. Taylor 19, M. Chalcroft 2.5, M. Eppstein 20, N. Northeroft 19, P. Seal 10.
July 13th Fawcett beat New Forest by 239 runs on 1st innings.
Fawcett: P. Clarke 146, D. Hinsman 31, J. Chapman 30, M. Holmes 22.
New Forest: K. Still 11, J. Dennison 11.
School beat Sarum by 11 runs.
School: H. Elam 15, P. George 15, C. Fletcher 10, D. Collier 12, N. Clive Smith 10.
Nelson beat St. Margaret’s by 55 runs.
Nelson: G. Taylor 26, S. Wotton 17 and 10.
St. Margaret’s: H. Elworthy 16.

Nelson won all their Matches and therefore the Cup. Their fielding was very good. Fawcett came in a good second, and had the two Houses met it would have been an even match.

Phyllis Clarke (Fawcett) won the Running Cup with an average of 53 runs. Other good averages were M. Holmes (Fawcett) 25, who made consistently good scores. D. Collier (School) 26, G. Taylor (Nelson) 19.

The result of the matches was as follows:
­Nelson won 4 matches.
Fawcett won 3
School won 2
St. Margaret’s won 2
New Forest  won 1
Sarum won 0

Throwing Competition:
Senior winner, Eleanor Lea 57yds. 2ft. 13ins.
Junior winner, May Ashford 44yds. 1ft.

AUTUMN TERM

LACROSSE. We have begun our season without many of our best players, and we are missing them very much.

The new Captains are,
School: Eva. Hudson.
Sarum: Dorothy Turner.
St. Margaret’s: Hilda Elworthy
Nelson: Nancy Northcroft.
Fawcett: Nora Randall.
New Forest: Madge Glynn.

In the 1st round of the Lacrosse Tournament School beat New Forest by 6 goals to 5, Sarum beat St. Margaret’s by 9 goals to 3, Fawcett beat Nelson by 5 goals to 3. On the whole these matches were quite good. The teams played together and seemed to realise that strength lies in combination, and we hope for still greater improve­ment as the matches continue.

You cannot expect to play well until you can use your crosse properly, and thoroughly understand the game.

MILDRED P. WESTLAKE.

SUMMER TERM, 1916

TENNIS. The Cup was won by School, who won 4 rounds. Fawcett was a very close second, Sarum 2 rounds, possibly 3, Nelson and St. Margaret’s 2 rounds, New Forest 1 round.

The 2nd Sixes:
Fawcett won 4 rounds.
Sarum won 3
St. Margaret’s won 3
Nelson won 3
School won2
New Forest won 0

The Staff Match v, the Godolphin produced far better games than last year.

Staff Six.                                                   Godolphin Six.

Miss Pinckney                                           H. Elam
Miss C. Ashford                                        E. Hudson
Mr. Douglas                                                 Y. Leys
Miss Westlake                                           V. Leys
Miss Parson                                                 H. Capel
Mrs. Hewson                                              0. Treaelles

9 matches to 0 matches.

The match was much better than the score indicates as, although the Staff were very short of practice, they had very strong additions to their team in Mr. E. Douglas and in Mrs. Hewson.. The Godolphin did extremely well in winning a set off Mrs. Hewson and Miss Parson in three cases. The match began at 2.15 but did not finish till nearly six o’clock, owing to rather long intervals for tea and rest, and to the two long matches which ran into three sets and vantage games.

The American Tournament, divided into four divisions, were won by :-­

1st Division M. Sim – P Clarke
2nd J. Hinxman – H. Phillimore
3rd M. Thursby – M. Sinclair
4th J G. Farnfield – M. Figgis.

The Championship was won by E. Hudson after some very close matches with H. Elam in the semi-final 2-6, 6-2, 6-1, and in the final against Vera Leys. These two matches produced the best tennis that has been played so far by the School. I hope now the whole School has realized that good style will take anybody to the top of the School far quicker and far more easily than a self-taught bad style can ever do. Vera Leys, at the age of 14 could hardly have been in the final unless she had, from the beginning, always tried to play in the correct way.

The Second Sixteen Championship was won very easily by Mabel Sim, who only lost six games during her easy progress through her four matches. Another instance of the triumph of an easy graceful style over every other sort of style.

VIOLET M. PINCKNEY.

Mental Exercise for the Holidays – Christmas 1916

My grandfather is twice as old as my grandmother was when my grandfather was half as old as he is at present. If they both live, in ten years time their joint ages will make 160 years. What are the present ages of the old couple?

Here is a problem about which people do not always agree. A rope is passed over a smooth pulley, and two monkeys of equal weight are hanging one at each end of the rope. One monkey climbs up his end, while the other remains hanging. Which will get to the top first?

A Literary Club Contribution – Christmas 1916

TIME.

His feet upon the time-enduring hills,
His head amid the glory of the stars,
He stands, unchangeable, yet ever new­
The ruler, and the law by which we live.
From the great distance came he when earth first
Was made; and when earth is not, then will turn,
Merge, and be submerged in the great
Beyond Where time and all things wend – Eternity.

M. DALSTON, Upper V.

The Red Cross Matinee – Summer 1916

You asked me to send you a short account of the Special Red Cross Matinee, which was given on May 2nd, at Drury Lane, during the Shakespeare Tercentenary Festival.
Mr. Ben Greet’s Company with whom I have been working all the winter at the Royal Victoria Hall, more generally known as the “Old Vic,” were asked to represent the “Winter’s Tale” episode in the Pagent of Shakespeare’s Plays, which followed the command performance of “Julius Caesar.”
It is difficult to say which were the most interesting to gaze at, the performers or the audience.
The King and Queen were present, and number of the Royal family, and those theatrical celebrities, who were not on the stage were certainly in the stalls.
The whole play of Julius Caesar was given at the special request of the Queen; and the crowd scenes, in which we all took part, were thrilling, led by Gerald du Maurier and A. E. George, on the immense stage of the “Lane,” with the most beautiful Roman scenery.
There was much consternation when Caesar’s ghost could not be found for his appearance in the Tent scene: but a little later on the truant ghost was led forward by Sir George Alexander, who explained, to the delight of all, that the delay had been caused by the King having just conferred the honour of knighthood on Mr. Benson, and the ceremony had taken longer than they expected, as no sword could be found, until someone thought of the “property room,” were one of shining “theatrical steel” was discovered.
The staging for the Pageant, which followed “Julius Caesar” was wonderful. In a few moments, by means of the machinery under the stage, which is just like the engine-room of some enormous ship, the whole stage was turned into a huge black staircase, each step having a black and white check border. Large, grey pillars filled in the wings, and the heavy, grey curtains at the back, through which the figures appeared, made a most effective setting.
Eight plays were chosen, “Romeo and Juliet”, “The Merchant of Venice”, “The Merry Wives of Windsor”, “Much Ado About Nothing”, “As You Like It”, “Twelfth Night”, “Coriolanus” and “The Winter’s Tale”.
The figures moved quickly down the staircase, a few minutes being allowed to each episode for a little grouping and movement, and as one story reached the footlights at the bottom of the staircase, and then vanished right underneath the stage, the herald of the next episode appeared through the top curtains.
The most interesting of the characters were the “Volumnia” in the “Coriolanus” episode, of Miss Genevieve Ward, who at 83 has returned to the stage in the cause of War charity, and is now working hard at His Majesty’s. The “Hermione” of Miss Mary Anderson in the “Winter’s Tale”, and above all the ”Portia” of Miss Ellen Terry, still with all the charm that is hers alone, in the “Merchant of Venice” episode, which was arranged by her daughter, Miss Edith Craig.
Last of all the curtains at the top of the staircase were drawn, and a bust of Shakespeare was seen, with Ellen Terry and Genevieve Ward standing on either side, representing Comedy and Tragedy. All the performers then grouped themselves on either side of the staircase, while the leading actresses walked up the centre, to the music of Elgar’s “Pomp and Circumstance,” and placed laurel wreaths round the statue. Then Miss Muriel Foster sang “God Save the King”, and the front curtains came down, and we realised that it was long past six o’clock, and we were awfully hungry.
But afterwards it was delightful to realise that one bad taken part, not only in an historic performance, but that one had helped to contribute over £3000 to the Red Cross Funds, to which all the profits of the day were given.
Yours affectionately,

MURIEL DE CASTRO.

School News – Summer 1916

Thursday, May 4th, School re-opened. After greetings Miss Douglas, gave out that next holidays will begin on July 27th, mark reading being on July 26th, and that half-term would begin on June 16th. She also said that nice subscriptions had been brought back towards the Star and Garter Home for totally disabled soldiers. Three hundred Schools have now joined the Patriotic Union, and between us we hope to raise £2000.

At the Arts and Crafts Exhibition, held at Wilton, Muriel Box won the cup for the doll which she had dressed. She was at the head of the Junior Section. As the cup can only be held in Wiltshire, it is to be kept at Fawcett House, although Muriel has left.
As we met together this year directly after Easter, Miss Douglas gave us an Easter motto for the term: “Therefore let us keep the Feast.”
Friday, May 6th, The School went to see a most interesting cinematograph, showing splendid pictures of the Navy and of the “New Army” in training.
Thursday, May 10th, A new plan has been arranged for Thursday afternoons. Preparation is from 2 to 4, and after that we are free to go for house, form or natural history expeditions.
Wednesday, May 17th Canon Sowter came to say goodbye to us before going to Ireland. He took our Intercession Service and then spoke a few words.
Wednesday, May 24th, Empire Day. (See special notice.)
May 29th, Lady Hulse spent the day at the School, and in the afternoon saw some of the Boarding Houses and the games.
Thursday, May 25th, Miss Eastgate, helped by some of the Music Mistresses, planned a “Shakespeare Afternoon.” and arranged the following delightful programme for it:

PROGRAMME.
Overture “Coriolanus” Beethoven.
Reading “Coriolanus”
“Julius Caesar.”
Song “Who is Sylvia?” Shubert.
”Two Gentlemen of Verona.”
Song “O Willow Willow” Music of Shakespeare’s time.
“Othello.”
Reading “Richard II.”
Song “Sigh no more, ladies ” Stevens.
“ Love’s Labour’s Lost.”
Song “It was a lover and his lass” Thomas Morley.
”As You Like It.”
Reading “Merchant of Venice ”
Song “Orpheus with his Lute” Sullivan.
Henry VIII.
Reading “Macbeth”
Song “Where the bee sucks” Arne
”The Tempest.”
Reading “Midsummer Nights Dream”
Overture “Midsummer Night’s Dream” Mendelssohn.

Wednesday, May 31st, Stephen Graham came to tell us about Russia.
Thursday. June 1st, Ascension Day. We went as usual to the 8 o’clock Celebration at St. Martin’s. The younger ones had their Ascension Day Service with Miss Lucy at 10 o’clock. We went to Wishford by the 12.45 train. We had a perfectly lovely afternoon at Grovely, and though the weather was rather unsettled, we had hardly any rain until we were on our way home. We ended the day with a little service at School, at which we sang our hymn for Spring.
Monday, June 5th, We rejoiced that the big Naval battle was so great a victory, though it has cost so many their lives.
Tuesday, June 6th, We heard the terrible news that H.M.S, “Hampshire” had been sunk, and that Lord Kitchener and his Staff, who were on their way to Russia, had gone down with her.
Wednesday. June 7th, Miss Douglas said that we would sing the Ascension Day hymn, and she read the Ascension Day collect, which was particularly appropriate at the moment, when the Strengthening comfort of the Holy Spirit was so greatly needed. In speaking of the death of Lord Kitchener, she said:
“We meet to pay a tribute to a very great Englishman, a tribute of grief, and a tribute of pride, to his life and Work, a tribute, too, of sympathy with our King and with very single soldier in the Regular Army and in Kitchener’s own Army. Whether we think of Kitchener as the one who vindicated in Egypt the work of the soldier saint, or as Chief of the Staff of the Forces in South Africa, or as Commander-in-Chief in India, we recognise the greatness of a life wholly given to the service of his, country in the performance of duty”.
Special prayers were then said in commemoration of Kitchener and of the valiant men who had fought and died in the Battle of Jutland.
Thursday, June 8th, Miss Douglas said that although we had not sent any representatives to the United Girls’ Schools’ Service in Southwark, we must remember it, and we had special prayers, thinking particularly of the Mission.
Whit-Sunday, June 11th, We went In the Memorial Service to Lord Kitchener hold at the Cathedral.
Friday, June 16th, Half-Tem holiday, made longer this Year by Friday morning being given in honour of Vera Joscelyne having won a scholarship to Oxford.
All those who did not go away went to Nelson House, where Miss Powell very kindly came to help Miss Edith. Needless to say, they had a most splendid time, and, of course, enjoyed themselves thoroughly.

Address Given on Empire Day – Summer 1916

By H. M. BAGNALL
Let me remind you first why this day, May 24th, was chosen for the Festival of the Empire. It was Queen Victoria’s birthday, and when she died it was chosen that she might be commemorated always with the Empire which grew to such greatness in her long and wonderful reign. The Colonies had long kept it with enthusiasm as Victoria Day; slowly we have risen to the appeal to join them in making it a yearly Commemoration of the Empire. This year, 1916, for the first time, even the Government is keeping it, and the flag is to fly on all Government buildings.
Salisbury has kept it several times, before the war broke out, but last year it was not kept, on account of the war. Why, then, keep it this year? Just because we have a clearer sense of the tremendous emergency, and we know we must rally every ounce of will and faith and hope to carry through what we have undertaken. Our great Poet of the Empire, Rudyard Kipling, sends us a message this morning.
“When Germany challenged us nearly two years ago to uphold with our lives the ideals by which we professed to live, we accepted the challenge, not out of madness, nor for glory or for gain, but to make good those professions. Since then the Allies and our Empire have fought that they may be free, and all earth may be free, from the intolerable domination of German ideals.
“We did not foresee the size of the task when it opened. We do not flinch from it now the long months have Schooled us to full knowledge, and have tempered us nationally and individually to meet it. The nations within the Empire have created, maintained, and reinforced from their best the great armies they devote without question to this issue. They have emerged, one by one, as Powers clothed with power through discipline and sacrifice, strong for good by their bitter knowledge of the evil they are meeting, and wise in the purchasable wisdom of actual achievement.
“Knowing as nations what it is we fight for, realising as men and women the resolve that has been added to us by what each has endured, we go forward now under the proud banner of our grief’s and losses to greater effort, greater endurance, and, if need be, heavier sacrifice, equal sponsors for the deliverance of mankind.”
There it is. The whole British Empire knows to-day that it is in for a struggle of life or death; that we must stand shoulder to shoulder, all the world round-our men in the front line, we women and girls supporting them by every means at any cost.
And our rallying flag is The Flag that is flying all round the world to-day: the Flag that
“Has braved a thousand years
The battle and the breeze”
The flag of LIBERTY – shown BY the blue of the sea and the air, the freest things we know: and the flag of LAW – the law of self-restraint for the sake of the liberty of others: for the red and white Crosses lie over the blue.
It is so delightful that our School motto means just those two things’ for which our Empire stands – “Franc,” that is free, “Leal”, that is Loyal, law-abiding.
How glad we feel when we see our flag flying to-day, that it does not display an Eagle, Mighty and relentless, keen and terrible. a bird of prey!
And how inexpressibly sad it would be to have a motto like that of the poor misguided men who have caused such bloodshed in Ireland! “Sinn Fein” – “ourselves alone,” what a hopeless and ill-omened war-cry!
But our Flag displays the Cross, and the Cross is “I” crossed out, myself ignored. It is life poured out, first by the Great Captain of our Salvation, then by all who have followed in His train – St. George of England, St. Andrew, St. Patrick, St. David, and all the noble host of heroes and heroines who have given their lives, down to those whom we ourselves have known and loved.
This is what our Empire has to stand for as a province in the Kingdom of Christ – sacrifice for the cause of brotherhood and union. The arms of the crosses of our flag stretch to all points of the compass, and they all meet in one centre. Our Empire stands to bring “more life and fuller” for all peoples, and our flag is a perpetual reminder that that can only come through sacrifice.
In the stirring words at the end of a leading article in to-day’s Daily Telegraphy, “let us not forget that there come great crises in the lives of individuals and of States in which it is rood to be alive. The sacrifice may be heavy, but the privilege is greater still – the privilege of showing ourselves men, the sacred trust which is put into our hands of saving not only ourselves, but humanity at large. Empire Day is a time for high resolves, for unflinching courage, for obstinate endurance, for all those virtues which, giving us a foremost place in the records of civilisation, fortify our stability and safeguard our future.”
That, then, is the call of Empire Day. In the Market-place down below you will stannd with some 2000 other boys and girls – most of them so much poorer than you in the things that make life easy and jolly, and, as we say, “worth having” to you, and yet they too are giving for the great cause their fathers and brothers. Lots of them are saving their pennies by going without sweets, or giving up a visit to the Pictures, which is the gretest pleasure they have. There is no question of “classes” in this war
“Groom fights like noble, squire like knight,
As fearlessly and well,”
and we stand or fall together, we here at home, our men at the front, and our fellow Britons over seas too.
The flag we shall salute in the Market-place was sent to the children of Salisbury by the children of an Australian Salisbury, and a flag which Godolphin helped to send has been flying to-day at a school in New Zealand. We are one to-day in sacrifice under the flag of Liberty and Right; and as we salute it let us renew our vows to be worthy of it – remembering those other great words of Kipling:
“No easy hopes or lies
Shall bring us to our goal,
But iron sacrifice
Of body, will, and soul,
There is but one task for all,
For each one life to give.
Who stands if Freedom fall?
Who dies if England live?”