We humbly beg that this our letter may be placed at the feet of our King and Emperor, who lives in England, in token of our loyalty and our prayers.
[Here follow the signatures of all the principal Somali chiefs and elders living in Jubaland.]
[From The New York Evening Post, Feb. 15, 1915.]
PARIS, Jan. 29.
So King Peter himself became priest; and the great cathedral was filled with the sobbing of his people.
Everybody knows the story of the deliverance of Belgrade; how the little Serbian Army fell back for strategic reasons as the Austrians entered the city, but finally, after seventeen days of fighting without rest, (for the Serbian Army has had no reserves since the Turkish war,) knit its forces together, marched 100 miles in three days, and drove the Austrians headlong out of the capital.
King Peter rode at the head of his army. Shrapnel from the Austrian guns was still bursting over the city. But the people were too much overjoyed to mind. They lined the sidewalks and threw flowers as the troops passed. The soldiers marched in close formation; the sprays clung to them, and they became a moving flower garden. The scream of an occasional shell was drowned in the cheers.
They are emotional people, these Serbians. And something told them that, even with death and desolation all about them, they had reason to be elated. A few hours before, the Austrians had been established in Belgrade, confident that they were there to stay for months, if not for years. Now they were fleeing headlong over the River Save, their commissariat jammed at the bridge, their fighting men in a rout.
So King Peter rode through the streets of the capital with his army, and came to the cathedral. The great church was locked, because the priests had left the city on errands of mercy. But a soldier went through a window and undid the portals. The King and his officers and some of the soldiers and as many of the people as could get in crowded into the cathedral. And, lacking some one to say mass, the King became a priest—which is an ancient function of Kings—and, as he knelt, the officers and soldiers and people knelt. There was a vast silence for a moment; and then, in every part of the church, a sobbing.
This account is a free translation of a woman’s letter, in Serbian, received in this city a few days ago by Miss Helen Losanich, who is here with Mme. Slavko Grouitch to interest Americans in helping her countrymen back to their devastated farms. Mme. Grouitch is an American by birth; but Miss Losanich is a Serbian, with the black hair and burning black eyes of the Slavs, and boasting twenty years perhaps. Her sister, Mme. Marincovich, is wife of the Serbian Minister of Commerce and Agriculture. It was Mme. Marincovich who had written the letter.