The Great War List

The Great War List

Captain W E Johns

Percy Toplis

Charles Lightoller

Ernest Hemingway (Nominated by )

John Francis Cecil Knight (Nominated by )

C.E.Montague (Nominated by )

Walter Tull (Nominated by )

Leslie Buswell (Nominated by )

After thinking of Harry Patch and General Arthur Currie I’ve decided to leave them for a bit and see how things develop while as they are both quite well known, in fact Harry Patch had a book written about him.

Any more nominations?


Hedd Wyn – poet

The picture is the Hedd Wyn statue at Trawsfynydd. He’s probably best described as a poet who served in the war, rather than a war poet. He was killed on the same day as the Irish poet Francis Ledwidge, who probably can be described as a war poet. I can see a lot more books ahead, as I need to correct a deficiency in my reading in this area. They are both buried in the same cemetery.

Neither of them appear on the War Poets’ Memorial in Westminster Abbey, so they are going on the list.

I’ve also thought of Edith Cavell and Captain Fryatt, but I’m not sure. Edith Cavell is very well known (she even has a car park in Peterborough named after her) and Captain Fryatt also seems pretty well commemorated for an “unknown” hero.

I may list Marie Depage, who I only knew because she was on a commemorative medal with Cavell.

And Thomas Dinesen VC. He was one of three Danes to be awarded the Victoria Cross, but the only one who tried to join the British, French and American armies before being accepted by the Canadians. He’s also the only one with a famous sister.

9 thoughts on “The Great War List

  1. flanders1914

    I would not regard Percy Toplis as a hero. He was a thug, murderer and rapist. Apparently a better than average piano player, but not a hero.(or Mutineer).

    1. quercuscommunity

      You’re absolutely right about Toplis, though I didn’t know about his piano playing, but I wasn’t looking for heroes, just interesting people.

      After all, Christie, from “Famous 1914-18” was a serial killer, Lightoller was accused of war crimes, Harry Patch was involved in a mutiny and Arthur Currie was an embezzler. If he hadn’t been a general he’d probably just have been called a thief.

  2. higgledypiggledymom

    I recognised more in the previous list (the one with AA Milne etc) than this, only got Hemingway. I do not normally read this genre, but might (ha ha) expand my horizons. Books are already falling out of nooks and crannies here, so I will live and read vicariously!

    1. quercuscommunity

      The new names didn’t achieve the celebrity of the ones in the book review . I actually had to look some of the new list up as people sent suggestions in. 🙂


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