Fields of Battle - Lands of Peace 1914 1918

Front cover image

Michael St Maur Sheil, foreword by Professor Sir Hew Strachan

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Edition Lammerhuber
Territory: World excluding Germany, Switzerland, Austria, France, & Belgium
Size: 305 mm x 295 mm
Pages: 264
Illustrations: 153 colour

RRP £55.00

  • This book shows, in fascinating images, how time and nature have transformed places of horror and killing of the First World War into landscapes of beauty and tranquillity
  • A celebration of the life of Professor Richard Holmes CBE, TD, JP 1946-2011, historian, raconteur and battlefield guide and dedicated to the countless men he admired so much: the men of all nations, doing their duty - the ordinary soldier
  • This book is a parable of wars in general and reveals their futility
  • Accompanying exhibitions include:June 1 - July 5 2016, The Guildhall, City of London, UK, July 18 - Aug 30 2016, Belfast City Hall, UK

This book is a photographic odyssey through the lands of the First World War. For more than ten years the photographer travelled from the dust of the Namib deserts to the frozen heights of the Vosges to create a unique collection of imagesthat document how time and nature have transformed these places of horror and killing into landscapes of great beauty and tranquillity... If anyone wants the reason for these photographs then they need look no further than the thoughts of a veteran leaving the shattered fields of the Somme who wrote: "No, they would not be lonely, I saw that bare country before me... the miles and miles of torn earth... the litter, the dead trees. But the country would come back to life, the grass would grow again, the wild flowers return. They would lie still and at peace below the singing larks, beside the serenely flowing rivers. They could not feel lonely, they would have one another. And... though we were going home and leaving them behind, we belonged to them, and they would be a part of us for ever." (P. J. Campbell).

Contents: Frontier battles; Flanders; Nord-Pas-de-Calais; Picardy; Oise-Aisne; Champagne-Ardenne; Lorraine; Alsace; The Masurian Lakes; Italy; Thessaloniki; Gallipoli; Africa; Beersheba.

Text in English, French, and Spanish.

After reading Geography at Oxford University, Michael St Maur Sheil began his career in photojournalism covering 'The Troubles' in Northern Ireland in 1970 and entered into a career-long association with the New York picture agency Black Star. Since then he has worked in over 60 countries and in 2001 he received a World Press Photo Award for his work on child trafficking in West Africa. In 2005, in conjunction with the late Professor Richard Holmes, he began documenting the battlefields of the First World War as they are today. The resultant work has been widely exhibited and in 2014 his exhibition Fields of Battle - Lands of Peace 14-18 was seen by over four million people during its display in Le Jardin du Luxembourg in Paris and St James's Park in London. In 2015 the Turkish government commissioned him to create a special exhibition for the Gallipoli centenary commemoration. In addition to being an accredited member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, he is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Member of the British Commission for Military History. When he is not getting lost on a muddy battlefield he lives with his wife Janet in Oxfordshire.

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