" a mixture of chloroform and putrefaction "
Putrefaction is the decomposition of organic matter, particularly proteins. The three general characteristics of putrefaction are the discoloration of the tissues, the evolution of gases in the tissues, and the liquefaction of tissues. Often the decaying body ruptures to release the foul-smelling gases.
" the hunt for copper driving bands "
WWI shells with copper driving bands - Credit: historicair
A driving band is a band of soft metal around the base of a shell or bullet. When the weapon is fired, the band forms a seal with the rifling of the gun barrel so that the gases propelling it forward do not escape.
" the light, piping whistle of the low spreading daisy cutters "
"Daisy cutter" bombs had fuses designed to detonate just before they hit the ground, in order to increase blast radius and shrapnel velocity. They were first used in 1918, when the Germans attacked an airfield of the Royal Air Force at Bertangles.
Such fuses are still in use today.
" another goes to the dressing station "
Dressing stations were located on or close to the battlefield, and provided basic medical treatment to wounded soldiers. The most serious cases were then sent on to hospital.
" La guerre-grand malheur-pauvres garcon- "
'La guerre' means war
'grand malheur' means misfortune
'Pauvres garçon' means poor boy