THE BATTLE GENERALLY CONSIDERED
I APPROACH now the main subject of this book-THE BATTLE OF THE MARNE.
I cannot attempt the task under the conditions which even the most superficial historian would desire and the most easily contented reader accept.
For even the very elements necessary for the most general historical statement upon this vast matter are still imperfect. That co-ordination of detail which is the soul of history is still impossible, on account of the almost complete absence as yet of all officially recorded detail whatsoever. The position of bodies of men 40,000 strong is still in doubt. The number of corps in each enemy army is often doubtful. The time-table of the critical hours is still de-