Adrian Carton de Wiart
- Title: Happy Odyssey
- Author: Adrian Carton de Wiart
- ISBN: 9781844155392
- Page: 346
- Format: Paperback
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Adrian Carton de Wiart s autobiography is one of the most remarkable of military memoirs He was intended for the law, but abandoned his studies at Balliol College, Oxford, in 1899 to serve as a trooper in the South African War Carton de Wiart s extraordinary military career embraced service with the Somaliland Camel Corps 1914 15 , liaison officer with Polish forces 19Adrian Carton de Wiart s autobiography is one of the most remarkable of military memoirs He was intended for the law, but abandoned his studies at Balliol College, Oxford, in 1899 to serve as a trooper in the South African War Carton de Wiart s extraordinary military career embraced service with the Somaliland Camel Corps 1914 15 , liaison officer with Polish forces 1939 , membership of the British Military Mission to Yugoslavia 1941 , a period as a prisoner of war 1941 43 , and three years as Churchill s representative to Chiang Kai shek 1943 46 Churchill was a great admirer During the Great War, besides commanding the 8th Glosters, Carton de Wiart was GOC 12 Brigade 1917 and GOC 105 Brigade April 1918 Both these commands were terminated by wounds He was wounded eight times during the war including the loss of an eye and a hand , won the VC during the Battle of the Somme, was mentioned in dispatches six times, and was the model for Brigadier Ben Ritchie Hook in the Sword of Honour trilogy of Evelyn Waugh.
Recent Comments "Happy Odyssey"
The only reason why I can think of statues not being built for this man is that there's not enough brass in the world for this man's balls. Absolutely amazing.
A remarkable memoir from a remarkable man. I was drawn to Adrian Carton de Wiart years ago when I was reading Paris 1919; there was a small mention of his love of duels and his time in Poland that caught my eye. Looking through the footnotes and bibliography, I stumbled upon some information on his life and bare bones biography. At first, I was interested in de Wiart because of his larger than life character-- I can hardly believe such a man existed, and, quite honestly, I found him hilariously [...]
What an unusual and completely fascinating read! I have not quite figured out yet why General Carton de Wiart is not more well known and why it took me so long to find out about him. His autobiography is fascinating from beginning to end and leaves you almost incredulous to the events of his life, if not for Winston Churchill's forward at the beginning!Belgium by birth, Adrian Carton de Wiart began his military career by falsifying his name and entering the British Army as a Trooper during the B [...]
"After an examination the surgeon pronounced my skull intact, ordered me a bottle of champagne and told me that by miracle a machine-gun bullet had gone straight through the back of my head without touching a vital part." [p. 76]This is one of the best books I've read this year and it is impossible to do justice to this war memoir (but I will try nevertheless). For those of you who have never heard of lieutenant general Adrian Carton de Wiart I can say that "unkillable british soldier" perhaps c [...]
OK, this is not "literature" as such, it has been written by a real soldier and it is a biography. But what a true story ! Adrian Carton de Wiart (from Belgian origin) is one of those characters that, if they would make a movie about his live, people wouldn't believe all the things he witnessed and experienced. If you're even a little interested in the late 19th and first half of the 20th century and military history, this is a must read. And if they are deciding to make a movie out of this man' [...]
Great book about a guy who truly loved what he did; a soldier always wanting to get back into the fight despite receiving serious injuries. It reads like the diary of an adventurer. The book also offers insight into the world of a gentleman officer in the British army during the late 19th and 20th centuries.
If you made up Carton de Wiart's story, no editor would publish such a fantasy. Evelyn Waugh's General Ritchie-Hook in the "Men at Arms" trilogy is based on Sir Adrian's exploits.
What an extraordinary memoir. It is the autobiography of an English/Belgian Edwardian gentleman from the Boer War to WW II. He never mentions his VC in WWI. This should be mandatory reading at West Point. It shows what an officer and a gentleman really means.
Staggering. Amazing man.
If you're not familiar with Sir Adrian Carton de Wiart, you should be. The man lived an incredible life (best summed up by the first paragraph of his entry), 1/10th of which would kill most humans. He served in three wars, survived multiple gunshot wounds, loss of an eye, a hand, survived several plane crashes, and tunneled out of a prison camp. All in a day's work for de Wiart, who keeps a good sense of humor and an exceedingly cheerful demeanor throughout. The book is very aptly named. Contra [...]
I think that one of the great things about this memoir is that there's no sense of anticlimax during the portions of his memoir that are combat free. The parts of the book recounting his "imprisonment" in Italy, his time as liason to Chiang Kai-Shek and his years in Poland are just as exciting as, say, when he yanks off the remaining fingers from his horribly shredded hand after having it mangled by a bullet in WWI. Strangely quiet on certain matters (wife and children never mentioned), yet quit [...]
This is a fascinating book about a remarkable life. Adrian Carton de Wiart was an army officer of Belgian and Irish ancestry, whose story could have been the original boys own adventure. He fought in the Boer War, WW1, WW2; was wounded many times, losing an eye and a hand, and winning the VC. He served in Africa, India, Europe, Poland and China, and met a 'who's who' of world leaders along the way.This book was written in 1950 and has no pretensions to literary merit; it is a straightforward mem [...]
If you're into this kind of thing, this is the kind of thing you'll be into. Carton de Wiart was the epitome of the British gentleman-soldier, without a proper education but possessed with an inextinguishable enthusiasm for war and adventure. Not recommended for a general audience, but if you think you'd enjoy it then you probably will.
I had never heard of the author but the book was recommended me, and I'm glad I read it. There is nary a mention of the medals won, or knighthood awarded. The account concentrates on the people the author meets, the adventures he had, and the (numerous) injuries he suffered. I wish I had a fraction of his grit and determination. Some opinions are jarring, but are very much of their time. An easy read and a good introduction for me to certain happenings during the First and Second World Wars I ha [...]
Fascinating from the first page. Discursive, conversational, amusing. Like the best storyteller you might encounter in an old regimental mess. De Wiart was Waugh's model for the eccentric and insanely brave brigadier in his war trilogy. I ran across a couple of his stories in my Oxford Book of Military Anecdotes and was able to order a nice slightly worn second printing (1950) from an English bookseller.
Carton de Wiart is a true hero of the old school, whose valour and sheer derring-do in the First World War and elsewhere put those of us generally desk-bound and daydreaming of freedom to shame. After suffering numerous life-changing wounds (loss of an eye and a hand amongst the most major), the author (by birth a Belgian aristocrat, ) has this to say of his exploits: 'Frankly I had enjoyed the war'.
Definitely worth reading, in a "car crash" type of way, to admire the absolute barminess (at least, to our modern perspective) of the man. Don't get me wrong, he was truly remarkable; I'm just glad his sort are no longer around today.
Having read this man's amazing profile, I wanted to discover more by reading his book. All his escapades are here but the book would have been enhanced by some elaboration on the circumstances in which his involvement took place.
I learner a lot about an amazing man. Can't ask for much more than that.
What a fascinating life this man led. Well worth the read if you are into history, military history.
A light, entertaining read. Definitely one of the most badass soldiers ever. Can't help but think that this was in some way an inspiration for George MacDonald Fraser's Flashman series.
This was a fascinating book about a fascinating and courageous man.
FantasticA wonderful and engaging read from a most interesting man. I could hardly put this book down as Sir Adrian captivated me with every line.
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