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From very early in the War propaganda was widespread in Britain. Lurid and exaggerated accounts of German atrocities were reported from August 1914 to encourage enlistment.

The execution of Edith Cavell was a great propaganda coup for the British. There was public outrage. A quiet, good looking British woman, the respectable and devout daughter of a clergyman, in a profession devoted to the care of others in the tradition of Florence Nightingale and who nursed both German and Allied troops alike, executed.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote
“Everybody must feel disgusted at the barbarous actions of the German soldiery in murdering this great and glorious specimen of womanhood.”

Irritated that American diplomacy was ignored, the American Press was just as angry and horrified over Edith’s execution and the feeling spread internationally.
It was conveniently overlooked that in this time of harsh punishments, German women had been executed in France for spying.

Edith Cavell became a symbol at a time when such imagery was desperately required to provide impetus to the war effort. This was done so successfully that she remains one of the most famous figures of the War and continues to be commemorated around the world.

It is interesting to note that in all the depictions of her execution, she is wearing her nurses uniform, something that one of her co-defendants suggested would have saved her from the death sentence if she had worn it at her trial. 
bullet pointEdith Cavell
bullet pointThe Early Years of Edith Cavell
bullet pointEarly Nursing Years
bullet pointWork in Belgium
bullet pointWar Time Activities
bullet pointWho Needed To Escape?
bullet pointWhy Was Edith Cavell Shot?
bullet pointWas Edith Cavell Also A Spy?
bullet pointPROPAGANDA
bullet pointEdith's Death and Army Recruitment
bullet pointEdith’s Character and Motivations
bullet point Edith Cavell Commemorated
bullet point Edith Cavell And The Royal Norfolk Regiment
bullet point Films, Plays, Poems & Songs
bullet point The Collection
bullet point Medals
bullet point The Regiment in The First World War
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