Would be remiss of me not to list one of these at this time of year.
A good used gift tin only (no content), with the base engraved with the owner initials ‘WA’ and ‘2RIR’.
Tin is in grubby untouched (long stored) never polished condition with some denting.
Contained in the tin was/is a small, bone grip, fruit knife with super scrimshaw workman ship to both sides detailing the owners regiment, being the 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (see images).
Knife open and close action is strong/firm. The tip of the smaller knife is broken away.
Good clear maker details, ‘Herbert Robinson Sheffield’.
A super combination of items from this iconic event/period of the first year of the war.
Christmas 1914 for 2nd R.I.R
The 2nd Battalion were in Flanders, Belgium.
On Christmas Day they were in trenches on the Kemmel-Wytschaete road some 150 yards from the German trenches. There were almost no communications trenches or shelters and the front-line trench was a ditch which often had three feet of water.
It would be 1915 before trench construction included breastworks to raise the occupants above the water table. These incredibly ‘vile conditions’ in the Flanders winter did little to contribute to any feeling of Christmas goodwill, so there was no truce as there had been further south in the 1st Battalion’s sector. The Reserve Company Commander’s personal diary describes exchanges of artillery fire.