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The World War I Memoir of Captain Henri de Lécluse, the Count of Trévöedal

Military History


Comrades-In-Arms is a powerful and passionate account by a French cavalry officer of daily life on the Western Front from January 1915 to August 1916. Lécluse commanded an elite cavalry unit during campaigns in Artois, Champagne, and Alsace. He regarded the men who served under him as comrades and heroes, and the memoir was written to memorialize those who had fallen in combat.

Beautifully written and extremely moving, Lécluse’s memoir consists of thirty-three individual chapters resembling short stories in form and devoted to descriptions of artillery bombardments, raids on enemy trenches, grisly atrocities, night patrols gone awry, the deaths of beloved comrades, and battlefields strewn with bodies. There are chapters devoted to rivers of mud flowing in the trenches, ruined villages, stately chateaux, descrated churches, the agonizing death of a black African soldier, a winter in Alsace, the murder of a pet bull-terrier, and fleeting moments of pleasure and escape amidst the nightmare of combat. This artful narrative will appeal to readers interested in military history and to those who enjoy beautifully written stories based on the daily lives of common soldiers.


Roy E. Sandstrom is an associate professor of history at the University of Northern Iowa. His is the author of Demystifying Wall Street: The Investor’s Guide to Stock Market Timing.

Jacques F. Dubois is assistant professor of French language and literature in the Department of Modern Languages at the University of Iowa. He is coauthor, with Michael D. Oates, of Personnages.