CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
Ref NoMS 3290/2/63
TitleLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws to her parents, Robert and Maggie Laws
Date16 May 1915
Extent4 sheets
DescriptionLetter from Amelia Nyasa Laws, 7 Via Venti Settembre, Rome, to her parents, apologising for writing in haste the previous week, worried that mails would not go; mass exodus of Germans on hearing that the trains were to be taken over by the Government; men up to 40 years old are now called up and there is a shortage of labour, particularly in the country; public unrest after the 'Lusitania'; Giolitti is not popular, but he has met with the King and with Salandra; Salandra has met with the King and von Bülow with Sonnino; military protection for Giolitti's house and the German and Austrian embassies; the office of the German Steamship Company was attacked; they have been holding a Union flag in readiness in case they need to protect the house; authorities surprised by enthusiasm for the poet Gabriele D'Annunzio; Mr. Cotterill almost mistaken for a German but cheered by the crowd when he identified himself as English; resignation of the Salandra ministry, to much public distress; parliament building attacked; government officials and lawyers joined in the demonstrations; crowd made barricades around Giolotti's house but had no wish to fight the army, merely to make their feelings known; the cavalry surrounded the barricades but did not mistreat the protestors; matters were more violent in Milan; the demonstrations have united the country; the King reappointed Salandra, who is trying to set up a semi-conciliatory ministry; the whole thing seems to have been caused by von Bülow's machinations, with some interference from the Roman Catholic party; civil war and the overthrow of the monarchy would have been the result if Giolitti had been made Prime Minister; Germany will never forgive Italy's treachery; organised demonstration of 15,000 to 20,000 people demanding a decision on war; parliament is delaying yet again; the newspapers say that the Allies want a firm answer from Italy soon, with present and future conditions for co-operation; the mass demonstration visited several embassies; the Germans have threatened to make Veneto and Lombardy into a desert like Belgium.
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