A la gloire de la France et de Verdun


At Verdun even the pretence of rationality failed. The slaughter was so hideous that even a trench system could not survive In the town, tourists inspect the memorials. One monument shows French soldiers forming a human wall of comradeship against the enemy. In another, France is personified as a medieval knight; resting on a sword, he dominates a steep flight of steps built into the old ramparts. There is another view of reality. Near the railway station, Rodin’s statue shows a winged Victory as neither calm nor triumphant, but demented by rage and horror. Her legs are tangled in a dead soldier and she shrieks for survival.

I’ve borrowed the words of Donald Horne in this The Great Museum for the presentation of this memorial of Verdun, located near the railway station. This memorial was offered by Holland, a country which remained neutral during the Great War.

rodin

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