Page 454. " was recovering from an attack of nerves, which was becoming known as shell-shock. Ria had noticed that he seemed to be holding onto himself tightly, trying not to let his hands shake, as they were wont to do. "

Shell-shocked soldiers were often considered cowards or malingerers. One doctor said that shell-shock was a "manifestation of childishness and femininity". Treatment included electro-shock therapy, hot and cold baths, massage, daily marches, athletic activities, and sometimes hypnosis. Officers were sometimes given psychoanalysis as well, especially at the famous Craiglockhart War Hospital in Scotland, which treated poets Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen.

Medical evidence showed that shell concussion could cause neurological damage - tiny hemorrhages in the brain and central nervous system. But men exhibited symptoms of shell-shock even when they had not been exposed to shell fire. In 1916, a distinction was made between those who were shell-shock wounded (W) and sick (S). Wounded was honourable.

Here is a clip that shows soldiers who were severely shell-shocked.


Page 462. " Sir Max Aitken, an odd little Canadian of great wealth and influence here. "

Sir Max Aitken - became Lord Beaverbook in 1916
Public DomainSir Max Aitken - became Lord Beaverbook in 1916
Canadian Max Aitken was a self-made millionaire by the time he moved to England at age 31. He became a British MP, and was granted a peerage in 1916, becoming Lord Beaverbrook. He is perhaps best remembered as been a powerful press baron.

Page 471. " It’s called a ‘Disappearing Propeller’ boat. ‘Dippy’ for short. "

The Disappearing Propeller Boat Company was started in Port Carling, Muskoka, in 1915, and by the early 1920s was the largest manufacturer of motorboats in Canada. This  video says it all.