Esmond. The Lost Idol. 1895-1917: The Life And Death Of A Young Officer: Esmond Elliot 1895 - 1917 by Johnnie AstorEsmond. The Lost Idol. 1895-1917: The Life And Death Of A Young Officer: Esmond Elliot 1895 - 1917 by Johnnie Astor

Esmond. The Lost Idol. 1895-1917: The Life And Death Of A Young Officer: Esmond Elliot 1895 - 1917

byJohnnie AstorEditorAlexandra Campbell

Hardcover | November 15, 2017

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This book draws on a remarkable collection of original unpublished First World War letters, diaries and photographs, and also provides a glimpse of Eton, the Crown and the splendor of the Raj. Esmond Elliot was born in 1895. His father, the Fourth Earl of Minto, was Governor General of Canada and Viceroy of India at the turn of the Century. His mother, Mary Minto, was a woman of beauty, intelligence and great wit. Her role as Lady in Waiting to, and confidante of, Queen Mary, placed her at the heart of political and royal circles. After leaving Eton in 1914, Esmond decided to postpone his studies at Cambridge, and joined the Lothians and Border Horse Yeomanry. As ADC to Geoffrey Feilding, GOC of the Guards Division, he was exposed to the complexities of High Command and to senior Generals and important officials. However, he yearned for action and in August 1916 joined the Scots Guards, a regiment which would take him to the Front Line. During the bitter winter of 1916/17, he saw fierce fighting on the Somme, when his Battalion suffered terrible losses. He kept a diary of his experiences; direct and spontaneous, it reveals the rapid transformation and maturing of a young officer exposed to war. In preparation for the Passchendaele offensive in July 1917, Esmond led a raid across the seventy-foot wide Yser Canal, returning with vital intelligence which enabled General Feilding to order the Guards Division across the canal, in broad daylight with no artillery bombardment or covering fire, to seize the opposite bank in the early hours of 27th, four days ahead of the main assault. A week later, in command of his Company, he was killed by a sniper on the Steenbeck, aged only 22. Letters of condolence collected by his grieving family show the extent to which was admired and respected; how throughout his life he won friends and touched people's hearts with his charm, humor and unstinting kindness. A fitting tribute to Esmond appears at the end of John Buchan's biography of Lord Minto: 'His gallantry was remarkable even among gallant men, he was supremely competent in his work, and in the darkest days his debonair and gentle spirit made a light around him. Alike over his men and his brother-officers, he cast a spell. Once, when volunteers were called for a raid, only a few came forward, till it became known that Esmond was to be in command, when the whole platoon volunteered and the rest of the company. "When the war is over and these Scotsmen return to their homes," a brother officer wrote, "they will tell their people of the wonderful boy who came to them in France, and who showed them what could be achieved by goodness."' His Platoon Sergeant wrote: 'We have lost our idol for we had set him on a pedestal in our hearts. He came to us and claimed our affections so that, now he has gone, we will miss him more than words can tell.'
After leaving Eton, Lord Astor was an officer in The Life Guards and served in Malaysia, Hong Kong and Northern Ireland, in addition to fulfilling ceremonial duties in London. His grandfather was Field Marshal Earl Haig, Commander-in-Chief of the British Army on the Western Front (1915-1918) and founder of the Royal British Legion. He ...
Title:Esmond. The Lost Idol. 1895-1917: The Life And Death Of A Young Officer: Esmond Elliot 1895 - 1917Format:HardcoverDimensions:9.41 × 7.24 × 0.98 inPublished:November 15, 2017Publisher:Helion and CompanyLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1912174022

ISBN - 13:9781912174027

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