Britannia's 'Huns'

Research output: Contribution to non-peer-reviewed publicationNewspaper article


The atrocities perpetrated by German servicemen against civilians during the Great War had led commentators across Britain to interpret the conflict as a moral crusade against a particularly cruel and tyrannical enemy. This narrative of British righteousness fuelled cultural mobilisation during the war and continued to offer significant consolation, especially to the bereaved, in the years after the Armistice. The violence the Crown forces unleashed against civilians in Ireland in 1920 and 1921 undermined this narrative and, worse, seemed to dishonour the memory of the war dead. Ultimately, the war in Ireland, and the policy of reprisals in particular, presented an unacceptably direct challenge to the British people’s understanding of themselves as defenders of the vulnerable and guardians of civilisation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages28 - 39
Number of pages12
Specialist publicationHistory Today
PublisherHistory Today
Publication statusPublished - 20 Apr 2021

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