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The Unknown Warrior

20 November 2020

November 19th, 1920.

THE scenes witnessed in Whitehall and in the neighbourhood of Westminster Abbey on the days following the anniversary of the Armistice were the outcome of one of those spontaneous actions whose results can never be foreseen. As though by carefully planned, concerted action, men and women from all parts of London and many more from the provinces joined in pilgrimage to the Cenotaph and to the open grave of the Unknown Warrior. To see the thousands of the bereaved, many of them poorly clad, standing for hours in the queues which had their tails incredibly far off, and moving slowly and almost noiselessly in the chill mist of a November morning, was to be touched, with a pathos that no ordered ceremonial, however perfect, could evoke. . .

We expressed the hope last week that the phrase “For King and Country” on the tomb of the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey might be amended. We mention it again because the matter is urgent and because we are confident that thousands of our fellow-countrymen are directly interested in public acknowledgment being made of their own lost ones having died for God as well as for king and country. . . Our appeal, then, is to the Dean of Westminster to take whatever are the proper steps to remedy the only defect in an otherwise perfect realization of a nation’s wide longing.


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