Great War Theatre

Examiner of Plays' Summary:

This 'play of the times' is a strongly written war play. Its peculiarity is that the chief character is a German with chivalry and humanity in him. He is von Einz, the Commandant of a British Prisoners of War camp in Belgium. The Military Governor of the district is Prince Eitel von Lowensturm Walderdeck, a brute. The Germans capture 25 British nurses with their 'administrator', Irene Meville, daughter of General Melville. Von Einz behaves like a gentleman and does what he can for them, and it is evident that he is falling in love with Irene and she with him, Prince Eitel behaving like a typical Hun. Then a German female spy is shot in Paris and the Germans, who have threatened to shoot Irene if this happens, are going to do so. But von Einz, with the assistance of a British officer prisoner, suggests to us how to stop it, and as a result we intimate that Prince Eitel's son (a prisoner of war) will be shot in reprisal. This makes Eitel give way and Irene is released, but von Einz is dismissed and sent to the Front to die. In Act II we are at a prisoner's camp in England of which General Melville is Commander. Von Einz arrives as a prisoner. Irene confesses her love for him but he recognises the barrier of race, begs to be left alone, and shoots himself with the General's revolver. I see no harm in suggesting in a play that we might threaten such reprisals. There is some violence in the treatment of Irene but it is necessary to the play and does not go very far. On p.10 a British Officer, overwrought, addresses von Einz (whom he misunderstands) as a 'bloody Hun', but I think it would be ridiculous to cut this out: in this place the word might certainly have its literal meaning. Recommended for licence. G. S. Street.

Licensed On: 2 Sep 1918

License Number: 1751




British Library Reference: LCP1918/15

British Library Classmark: Add MS 66197 X


9 Sep 1918 Baths Hall, MoffatUnknown Licensed Performance