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A Noble Woman by Ernest Protheroe

A NOBLE WOMAN

The Life-Story of EDITH CAVELL

By ERNEST PROTHEROE Author of 'In Empire's Cause.' &c., &c.

'I will give thee a crown of life.'

London THE EPWORTH PRESS J. ALFRED SHARP

_First Edition, January, 1916_ _Second Edition, September, 1916_ _Third Edition, January, 1918_ _Fourth Edition, May, 1918_

CONTENTS

CHAP. PAGE

I. INTRODUCTION 7

II. THE HEEL OF THE OPPRESSOR 17

III. THE ARREST 29

IV. SPINNING THE TOILS 37

V. THE SECRET TRIAL 44

VI. THE FIGHT FOR A LIFE 52

VII. THE BLOOD OF THE MARTYR 63

VIII. IN MEMORIAM 73

IX. BRITISH OFFICIAL REPROBATION 89

X. GERMANY'S CYNICAL DEFENCE 99

XI. JUSTICE AND SAVAGERY CONTRASTED 108

XII. PULPIT AND PEN UNITE IN DENUNCIATION 114

XIII. THE LASH OF THE WORLD'S PRESS 128

XIV. AMERICA'S VERDICT 159

XV. CONCLUSION 167

I

INTRODUCTION

Edith Louisa Cavell was born in 1866 at the country rectory of Swardeston, near Norwich, of which parish her father, the Rev. Frederick Cavell, was rector for forty years. In that pleasant sunny house the little girl passed her early days in uneventful happiness, for Swardeston had few interests apart from the obscurities of its own rural retirement.

The rector, who was a kindly man at heart, but firm to the point of sternness where his duty was concerned, ruled his home with evangelical strictness. His daughter Edith was a thoughtful child; and her unfailing consideration for others and her concern for their welfare caused her to be beloved by everybody. But the child's innate gentleness was tinged with a sense of duty remarkable in one of her years, which characteristic was the undoubted outcome of her father's precept and example.

Edith Cavell's education was as thorough as her parents could contrive; and, apart from mere scholarship, her outlook was widened by being sent to a school at Brussels.

When the Rev. Frederick Cavell died, the family removed from Swardeston to Norwich, and Edith decided to adopt the profession of nursing the sick poor. To that end on September 3, 1895, she entered the London Hospital as a probationer, and remained in that great institution for nearly five years. From the first, by her unselfish devotion to duty she endeared herself to her colleagues and patients alike. Part of the time she was staff nurse in the 'Mellish' Ward; and when the authorities sent her to Maidstone at the great outbreak of typhoid in that town, she did excellent work.


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