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A few said they couldn’t tell, but it had definitely been an angel, maybe more than one. The Angels of Mons’ story is associated with the 8th infantry brigade of the 3rd division of the British Army. In those terrible days of August heat, the powerful German right wing swung like a great fist west and southwest from the Belgian frontier and struck deep into France. See more ideas about world war i, battle, world war one. Were the Angels of Mons in World War I Real, or Mass Hysteria? Angel Sightings At The Battle Of Mons Never miss a paranormal mystery! Despite the censorship going on in Britain at the time, this battle was the first indication the British public had that defeating Germany would not be as easy as some had thought. In 2002 in a BBC Radio documentary The Making of an Urban Myth Sullivan admitted the story was a complete hoax to drum up interest in Woodchester Mansion; the footage and soldier never existed. For the public, this was a serious blow. Machen later admitted to making the story up. The woman, unconvinced, repeated the story later, and a British colonel told her simply: “Young lady, the thing happened. All the same the angel at Mons interests me. Spiritualism, Superstition and the Supernatural During the First World War. They were the 2nd Royal Scots, the 2nd Roy… Even though the British were badly overpowered and outnumbered, the Germans began to retreat once the angels arrived. It changed the world more than any other single event in history. There, on Sunday, August 23, Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien’s II Corps took on the German juggernaut along the Conde Canal. And a great many of them saw identical sights at different times and in different places. The irreducible details about the incident of the Angel of Mons seem to be that a small force of regular soldiers representing a nation with an oral tradition of combat success due to divine participation had a narrow escape against a vastly more numerous opponent at Mons in August, 1914. . A wounded gunner confirmed his story. This happened, I should think, some time in April, and the snowball of rumour that was then set rolling has been rolling ever since, growing bigger and bigger, till it is now swollen to a monstrous size. Maybe some of the stories were invented. No, he said, he was a Methodist, but he had seen St. George mounted on a white horse, leading the British into action against overwhelming odds. Mons was a battle of movement - unlike the battles that followed which involved trench warfare". Listen to ““THE ANGELS AT THE BATTLE OF MONS” #WeirdDarkness” on Spreaker. He made little money from the story then or later. The cross is located at exactly the point where a motley outfit of cooks, store men, drivers and delivery men, about 50 in all from the regiment, held up the German advance for 11 hours. Back they went in the heat and dust, occasionally turning to bloody the German corps pursuing them. Source: Skeptics back in England and America did scoff, but that was to be expected. Jan 30, 2014 - Board on The Battle of Mons, Belgium 1914 detailing what it was, what happened, Key involvement and a conclusion to the Battle. The retreat and the battle were rapidly perceived by the British public as being a key moment in the war. ; Queen Reika - Massive damage to Aliens and Zombies! As a former regular soldier, Scotsman Joe Cassells was a first-class reservist in the British Army. One man saw a glow in the darkness, a glow that became the figure of a female angel, dressed in white, with a gold band around her hair. Many of the English troops insisted that an entire regiment of white-clad, shining apparitions appeared between the two armies. Despite the censorship going on in Britain at the time, … The BEF comprised much of Britain’s tiny regular army, a minuscule force of four infantry divisions and five cavalry brigades when … Doomed to death. It was then, in a time of deadly crisis, that the Angels of Mons, of wonderful tales of heavenly help, began to appear. [7], Articles with unsourced statements from November 2014, Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Black Dossier, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Live Forever, “The Bowmen”, (also includes his Introduction). The Battle of Mons was the first major action of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) in the First World War.It was a subsidiary action of the Battle of the Frontiers, in which the Allies clashed with Germany on the French borders. Europe flamed and thundered with the red ruin of war. The Angel of Mons – a popular story about a group of angels who supposedly protected members of the British army in the Battle of Mons – is perhaps the most enduring supernatural legend of the First World War. In September 1914, two months after the outbreak of the Great War, Welsh journalist and author Arthur Machen published a short story called The Bowmen in the London Evening News. A great voice was heard to thunder over the din of battle, “Array, Array!” German prisoners taken in the action said they were bewildered that their British opponents had reverted to wearing armor and shooting arrows. But the naysayers and doubters hadn’t been there. The Angels of Mons is a legend that evolved from one writer’s skillful ability to weave ghostly stories. However it appears from examination of his original letters he wrote those entries after the war and falsified the dates. Perhaps that was what had caused these “visions,” as the newspapers called them. In David Mitchell's 2004 novel "Cloud Atlas" the character Robert Frobisher composed a piece called "Angel of Mons". © The parish magazine of All Saints, Clifton, reported that two officers had seen a troop of angels between their men and the enemy. Others said the “Angels of Mons” might have been St. Michael, since he carried a gleaming sword. It became a bestseller, and resulted in a vast series of other publications claiming to provide evidence of the Angels' existence. It was not a place the II Corps commander would have chosen to fight, but Smith-Dorrien wisely elected to make a stand rather than try to disengage and withdraw in the face of overwhelming numbers. Embed from Getty Images. Unknown to the BEF however, the French had retreated, leaving the British Army outnumbered almost three to one and vulnerable to encirclement. A careful investigation by the Society for Psychical Research in 1915 said of the first-hand testimony, "We have received none at all, and of testimony at second-hand we have none that would justify us in assuming the occurrence of any supernormal phenomenon". [citation needed]. The Battle of Mons came to be seen as a British victory against insurmountable odds, like the Battle of Agincourt. Many of the men had reached the end of their endurance; some had not eaten in 24 hours. These new publications included popular songs and artists' renderings of the angels. George for England in the good old style,” and all around the British appeared a spectral company of archers. On 29 September 1914 Welsh author Arthur Machen published a short story entitled "The Bowmen" in the London newspaper The Evening News, inspired by accounts that he had read of the fighting at Mons and an idea he had had soon after the battle. German prisoners explained that the attack was aborted because they saw strong British reinforcements coming up. “Rumours of Angels: A Legend of the First World War – Detailed Study”. [1] Machen's story was not, however, labelled as fiction and the same edition of the Evening News ran a story by a different author under the heading "Our Short Story". The brigade consisted of four infantry battalions, about 4,000 men in total. A KEY battle turned around by phantom soldiers; the … On the evening of 23 August, as night was falling, the situation was serious. The article discussed a long involved story in which Doidge was involved with an American GI and an angel seen years later in Woodchester Mansion. "[citation needed] This led Machen to suggest that the bowmen of his story had become the Angels of Mons. The priest replied[1] that Machen must be mistaken, that the "facts" of the story must be true, and that Machen had just elaborated on a true account. They were above the German line facing us. A story appeared in the North American Review in August 1915 about a soldier who had memorized the motto inscribed on the plates in a London restaurant. He must also deal with battle worn soldiers and their bizarre tales of with supernatural intervention and intrigue. They hadn’t fought against enormous odds, with comrades dying next to them, baked by a remorseless sun and drenched with rain. From a painting by W.H. They were winged like angels, and as they hovered in the gathering darkness, the Germans inexplicably halted and the British slipped away to safety. Maybe all those who said they saw a miracle were simply hallucinating, as the scoffers said. Was it hysteria, fatigue, fear, wishful thinking? As it was a time of allied problems with the Lusitania sinking, Zeppelin attacks and failure to achieve a breakthrough on the Western Front, the timing would make military sense. The retreat and the battle were rapidly perceived by the British public as being a key moment in the war. "[citation needed] A Mr. A.P. A short story based on a real-life battle became the basis for one of World War I’s most famous paranormal legends. As the Remembrance season draws near, John Phillpott visits the scene of the opening battle involving the British Army in the First World War, and relates the strange tale of the Angels of Mons. Three soldiers were interviewed separately by the vicar of a church near Keswick, in the north of England. The Battle of Mons was the first time British and German forces encountered each other in WWI. A soldier of the Cheshire Regiment saw the angels too, and watched the German cavalry horses panic and bolt before their terrifying presence. In times of peril, legends are made. During this battle more than a hundred British soldiers claim to have witnessed the vision of an angel which guided them to safety. One of the abiding legends of the Great War is of an intercession by a heavenly agent -- allegedly observed by many soldiers -- during the opening action at Mons, Belgium, part of the larger action known as the Battle of the Frontiers in August 1914. Advancing German forces were thrown back by heavily outnumbered British troops, who suffered heavy casualties and, being outflanked, were forced into rapid retreat the next day. Surrounded by the Germans who outnumbered them five to one, 4,000 Commonwealth soldiers fought their way through and were saved from certain death. To the First World War index. Cassells had lived through the first battle with the Germans, not quite at Mons, but as near as damn it; and he lived through the retreat after. In the reports and stories that followed the battle a myth arose: the ‘Angels of Mons’, heavenly beings, who appeared before the men and guided them as they retreated. Set in WWI, an army psychiatrist, stationed in London, struggles with the loss of his son in the battle of Mons. Begbie was impressed with the soldier’s transparent honesty. The “luminous cloud” between Germans and British appeared again, and the Bath Society Paper quoted an extract from an officer’s letter: “I myself saw the angels who saved our left wing from the Germans during the retreat from Mons. Well-meaning clergymen and physicians made wise and condescending remarks about hysteria, battle fatigue, and fear. Main Article Primary Sources (1) Brigadier-General John Charteris, the Chief Intelligence Officer at GHQ (5th September, 1914). The Angels of Mons is a legend of supernatural intervention during or after the Battle of Mons on 23 August 1914. The battle began at 9:00 am, when the artillery of General von Kluck’s First Army opened fire on the British positions. 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