Edmund Dulac's contribution to ''King Albert's Book'' (1914)

Illustration by Edmund Dulac



King Albert's Book was publishing project involving The Daily Telegraph, The Daily Sketch, The Glasgow Herald and

Hodder and Stoughton in 1914. Proceeds from the sale of the book contributed to the "Daily Telegraph Belgian Fund"

for those affected by the emerging conflict of World War I and its effects on the tiny European nation.


The Introduction to King Albert's Book provides a description of Belgium - the martyr nation of the war - as follows:


With nothing to gain by taking up arms, with no territory to annex, no commerce 
to capture, no injury to revenge, having neither part nor lot in any European 
quarrel, desiring only to be left alone that she might pursue the arts of peace, 
Belgium found herself suddenly confronted by the choice of allowing her soil 
to be invaded by a powerful neighbour on his way to destroy his enemy, or of 
protecting her independence as a separate nation by the whole strength of her 
armed resistance. 

Although one of the smallest and least aggressive of the countries of Europe, the 
daughter among the nations, Belgium, true to her lofty political idealism, chose the 
latter part, not counting the cost, only realising that a ruthless crime was about to 
be committed, and drawing the sword, after the sword had been drawn against her, 
in defence of her honour, her national integrity, her right to be mistress in her 
own house, her historic heritage of freedom and all the spiritual traditions of 
her race. 

In doing this during the past fateful months, Belgium has fought not only her 
own battle but also the battle of France, the battle of Great Britain and the 
battle of Freedom. By her brave stand against incalculable odds she has added 
a new and inspiring chapter to the heroic annals of humanity and perhaps lifted 
to a higher level the future destinies of man. 

But she has paid a terrible penalty. Her beautiful country has been laid waste. 
Her harvests, which were ripe for the gathering, have been trodden into the earth. 
Her villages have been given up to the flames. Her cities have been made to 
resound with the screams of shell and the cries of slaughter. Her historic monuments,
venerable with the associations of learning and piety, have been razed to 
the ground. And, above all, Death has taken an awful toll of her manhood on 
the field of battle, while multitudes of her surviving people, the very young, the 
very old, the very weak, the very poor, all innocent and all helpless, have been 
driven forth on the verge of winter from their smoking, blackened and outraged 
homes into an exile in foreign lands from which there can hardly be any hope 
that many of them will return. 

No more woeful and terrible spectacle of a country in utter desolation ever came 
from earthquake, eruption or other convulsion of Nature in her wrath than has 
been produced in Belgium by the hand of man. A complete nation is in ruin. 
A whole country is in ashes. An entire people are destitute, homeless and on 
the roads. A little Kingdom, dedicated to liberty, has "kept the pledge and 
died for it". 


In keeping with that description, Dulac appears to have sought to personify the nation of Belgium within the flames

of war - it is a quite stunning illustration.



Complete image

Single Greeting Card (with matching Envelope)

Price: US$5.00

Detail (for reference)

Reproduction on 12x18" sheet

Code: ED KAB1 12x18
Price: US$60.00


Our Greeting Cards


When presented on Greeting Cards, this image is prepared as a tipped-on plate - in hommage to the hand-crafted

approach typical of prestige illustrated publications produced in the early decades of the 20th Century. Each card is

hand-finished, with the image presented on Ivory card stock with an accompanying envelope. On the rear of each

card we also present some information about Edmund Dulac and this wonderful illustration. We have left the interior

of the cards blank so that you may write your own personal message.


Our large format reproductions


Each of our large format reproductions are prepared with archival quality materials and processes to ensure many years

of enjoyment. In addition, our reproductions are accompanied by explanatory material relating to Edmund Dulac

and this wonderful illustration.


How to purchase


To purchase, simply click on the appropriate "Add to Cart" button appearing above and you will be taken through to

our Shopping Cart secured through PayPal. Multiple purchases will be consolidated by that feature and shipping and

handling costs to any destination in the world are accommodated by our flat-rate fee of US$20 for every US$200

worth of purchases.