Arthur Ransome Wiki

'War in the Swallows and Amazons series means World War I or the First World War; initially called The Great War.

Mrs Barrable's brother Richard was in the Navy during the War (BS24).

Slater Bob tells the eager prospectors that (PP3):

  • it was a young Government chap who found that gold. Just before the war began .... Then t’newspaper wi’ t’ news reet across the front page, o’war begun and officer’s leave stopped .... But he never did come back

However when Dick tells Captain Flint of the plan and of Slater Bob’s story he dismisses it as a legend (PP33):

  • And the young man went to the war, and so his secret was lost. Why, I heard that story when I was a boy. Thirty years ago it was the South African war, and before that it was the Zulu or the Crimean, and I dare say a hundred years ago Slater Bob’s grandfather was talikng of the gold some young fellow would have mined if only he hadn’t to go off to fight Napoleon ....

Colonel Jolys is described as is a retired army officer and the hero of many wars. He is a near-contemporary of Maria Turner but a few years younger than her and aged about 55, since she describes him as reverting to the little boy of 50 years ago, referring to the Tin Trumpet Incident (PM29). Hence he would have served in the First World War rather than the many wars i.e. the minor colonial wars of Arthur Ransome's 19th-century childhood.

Ted Walker was presumably in the Royal Navy in World War I, but there is no mention made of his war service.

Lt Geoffrey Ransome (Arthur's younger brother) was killed in 1918.

World War II[]

AR wrote War in his diary on the eve of Munich (LAR). The effect of the war on Arthur Ransome and his writing is described in Signalling from Mars.

See also[]