Illustrated Journal #10 (Christmas 1914)

Christmas Truce 1914

Stille Nacht by DarthFar (DeviantArt) – Translated to Silent Night

Seemingly forgotten by history, it is a little known fact that in World War I that there was an unofficial ceasefire during Christmas time. It happened along the Western Front. Soldiers dropped their arms and walked across No Man’s Land to each side exchanging gifts, foods, cards etc. What really strikes me about this is how people were willing to stop fighting and greet each other like human beings. This was before the enemy was dehumanized to the point of treating them like animals. There will never a time like this ever again in the history of war. It’s a shame too, when word broke out about this, this never occurred again in the remaining years of the war.

This shows to me how powerful Christmas truly is. It can stop a war. It can make two sides unit because they aren’t really that different from one another. The flags maybe different, but they all have the same values and feelings. It reinforces why Christmas is seen as the most wonderful time of the year.

Balance: The way the art is organized together gives this piece balance. Major events and settings are show around it: the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, the sinking of the Lusitania, soldiers going into No Man’s Land, and the destroyed city.

Color: Color is used to distinguish the center piece from the black and white pictures surrounding it. It also shows the difference between the German soldiers and British soldiers. The colors, green and red, are present to show that this it is Christmas time since those colors represent it today.

Emphasis: The center is colored because it is trying the emphasize the importance of christmas to the soldiers. They are willing to put down their arms, come together, and ignore what caused the war to begin with to celebrate the holiday.

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