Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Dulce et decorum est

For Armistice Day, Terry Teachout has a fascinating blogpost about an extremely rare* and very haunting audio recording (two minutes) of a gas shell bombardment in October 1918, made by a "a primitive piece of recording equipment [set up] immediately behind a unit of the Royal Garrison Artillery stationed outside Lille". The person responsible was a brave HMV sound engineer by the name of Will Gaisberg.

This is an mp3 of the recording. Somewhat disconcertingly, it's also available on iTunes - search Gas Shell Bombardment.

Mr Gaisberg inhaled some of the gas from the bombardment that he recorded, and died four months later.

*I don't know if any other audio recordings were made on the battlefield during the First World War.

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