The Wearing of the Green

From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia

The Wearing of the Green is a letter written by Arthur Conan Doyle published in the Daily Express on 18 august 1915.

The Wearing of the Green

Daily Express (18 august 1915, p. 2)



Defenders of the rule that volunteers shall not wear their grey-green uniform in public are not wanting. Their case is stated by Sir A. Conan Doyle in the following letter:—

To the Editor of the "Daily Express."

Sir, — It must be clear to any one who knows the facts that the provost-marshal was perfectly right in his action and that the volunteer was wrong in resenting it.

In the War Office paper which regulated the status of the force it was expressly stipulated that the uniform should only be used when on duty. Such a regulation saves the force from those who might join it in order to show themselves in public in a uniform. Such men are not desired.

Why should volunteers make an agreement with the Government and then proceed to break it? There will be some hard cases, no doubt, but no law can be made which does not met harshly in particular instances.

If volunteers wish to show that they have in them the making of good soldiers, they should accept discipline without grumbling, and avoid breaches of the regulations which have been laid down for their conduct. These regulations will, no doubt, in time be relaxed — but that time will not be hastened by insubordination.

As to the men who resign, like spoiled children, because they cannot at once have their way, their action shows that the force will be stronger without them.

Grand Parade, Eastbourne.