Commemorating the First World War

Merci !

Annales corrigées
Classe(s) : Tle ST2S - Tle STI2D - Tle STL - Tle STMG | Thème(s) : Mythes et héros
Type : Écrit LV1 | Année : 2017 | Académie : France métropolitaine




France métropolitaine • Juin 2017

Séries technologiques • LV1

Commemorating the First World War

document 1 Why we wear poppies on Remembrance Day



The poppy is the enduring symbol of remembrance of the First World War. It is strongly linked with Armistice Day (11 November), but the poppy’s origin as a popular symbol of remembrance lies in the landscapes of the First World War.Poppies were a common sight, especially on the Western Front. They flourished in the soil churned up by the fighting and shelling. The flower provided Canadian doctor John McCrae with in­spiration for his poem “In Flanders Fields”, which he wrote whilst serving in Ypres in 1915. In 1918, in response to McCrae’s poem, American humanitarian Moina Michael wrote “And now the Torch and Poppy Red, we wear in honor of our dead…”. She campaigned to make the poppy a symbol of remembrance of those who had died in the war.Artificial poppies were first sold in Britain in 1921 to raise money in support of ex-servicemen and the families of those who had died in the conflict. They were supplied by Anna Guérin, who had been manufacturing the flowers in France to raise money for war orphans. Selling poppies proved so popular that in 1922 the British Legion founded a factory – staffed by disabled ex-servicemen – to produce its own. It continues to do so today.Other charities sell poppies in different colours, each with their own meaning but all to commemorate the losses of war. White poppies, for example, symbolise peace without violence and purple poppies are worn to honour animals killed in conflict.The poppy continues to be sold worldwide to raise money and to remember those who lost their lives in the First World War and in subsequent conflicts.



Retrieved: October 10, 2016

document 2 “I felt humbled by their sacrifice”


The descendant of a Somme dispatch rider has spoken of his “humility” and emotion after completing a commemorative motorbike ride across the battlefield.

As reported, David Holdway-Davis, 20, joined motorbikers from as far afield as England, Australia, France and New Zealand at the Communal Cemetery in Abbeville at the start of a special journey in honour of the bravery of his great great-uncle, Corporal Oswald Davis.

Building apprentice David flew from Brisbane, Australia, to take part in the special trip. He said: “I can only imagine the hardship and suffering Oswald endured. On that first morning at Abbeville, as I stood in the shadow of the tall trees and immaculate gravestones of the men who died in such terrible circumstances near this quiet, atmospheric and impeccably maintained cemetery, I felt humbled by their sacrifice. It was the most moving experience of my life.”

The group, including David’s father Philip, traced the route Oswald followed exactly 100 years ago, during the Battle of the Somme.

The memorial riders began their journey near Oswald’s first army muster site where, his training complete, he started his riding duties. Their next stop was Amiens, then Senlis-le-Sec, and on to Thiepval, where Philip laid a wreath at the memorial.

In a speech at the memorial, Philip said: “This tribute is from the Royal British Legion and Oswald’s family for all the dispatch riders of World War One. We remember these brave men with thanks and pride.”

On July 23, the bikers reached Ypres, in time to attend the 8pm Remembrance Service at the Menin Gate.

Oswald survived the battle that claimed 1.3 million lives and went on to ride his bike through Belgium and Germany until he was demobbed. He returned to work in the family business in Birmingham and died in 1962.

He was a talented writer, and left an archive of work, including his war diary, newspaper articles and two novels. A copy of his diary is available to download from

In homage to Oswald, enthusiastic biker David borrowed a modern Triumph for the bike journey. He said: “It’s a lot more powerful than Oswald’s machine but, from reading his diary, I know that he was very fond of that. Besides carrying a basket contain­ing 28 pigeons, he somehow managed to do all his own repairs, drive through mud-filled craters, dodging shrapnel and bombs, and deal with lice, hunger and constant fear. His sense of duty was awesome. My generation can learn a lot from men like him. France is a beautiful country, and I am so grateful that I am able to visit. Thanks, Uncle Oz!”


compréhension 10 points

Documents 1 and 2

1 Choose one title that best applies to BOTH documents. Justify your answer by quoting one sentence from each text.

1. Commemorating the First World War.

2. Commemorating the Second World War.

3. Commemorating the Commonwealth Army Corps.

4. Commemorating the British Legion.

Document 1

2 1. Copy the table onto your paper and complete it with elements from the text.

Name of people/

Groups of people

Contribution to commemoration


John McCrae


advertised the poppy as a commemorating symbol


Anna Guérin


before 1921


started producing the poppy in Britain


2. Choose the photo which provided inspiration for the poem “In Flanders Fields” and write your answer onto your copy.


Photo a


Photo b


Photo c


Photo d

3. Pick out two sentences in the text which show that the poppy is still used as a symbol today.

3 1. Apart from being a symbol of remembrance, what was the poppy also used for? Answer the question by quoting the text.

2. Pick out TWO categories of people who benefited from the money raised by the sale of poppies.

4 Answer the following questions on your paper. Which poppy colour is supposed to commemorate...

1. reconciliation and pacifism? Poppy colour: ………………………

2. animals killed in the war? Poppy colour: ………………………

3. dead soldiers and civilians? Poppy colour: ………………………

Document 2

5 1. Copy the following identity forms onto your paper and complete them.


2. Complete David’s family tree. Copy boxes A and B onto your paper and complete them with information about the following elements:

a) family relation

b) name

c) date of death

d) name


3. Conclusion. Fill in the following sentence with your own words.

Although the men in the grey boxes (5.2) belong to different ……………………. , they have a ……………………. passion.

6 Copy the table onto your paper and complete it with words from the text.

The special journey

Countries of origin of the participants

Means of transportation


– Departure: Abbeville

– 1st stop:

– 2nd stop:

– 3rd stop:

– Arrival:

7 Choose the correct answer and copy it onto your paper.

The main goal of the special journey is:

a) to visit French and Belgian cities.

b) to decorate war veterans.

c) to honour soldiers.

d) to go on a biking tour.

e) to learn a foreign language.

f) to write newspaper articles.

8 1. True or false? Answer the question and justify by quoting the text.

a) Oswald refused to share his experience of the war.

b) Oswald was very good at mechanics.

c) Oswald had to overcome a lot of obstacles to survive.

2. Explain in your own words how David considers Oswald. Justify with a quotation from the text. (maximum 40 words)

Documents 1 and 2

9 How do people commemorate the war and honour its victims? Pick out five examples mentioned in document 1 and document 2.

expression 10 points

Choose ONE of the following subjects. (150 words minimum)

1 You have been selected to speak at the opening ceremony of a war exhibition about “World War One: Women during the War”. Write a speech to honour one of the following women.

1. Jane Ann Jones


Joined the Army Auxiliary Corps.

Managed soldiers’ equipment.

Sent official messages to soldiers.

Wrote her memoirs.

Was awarded a title (O.B.E.).

2. Ethel “Betty” Stonehouse


MI5 intelligence service agent.

Supervised soldiers’ leave.

Delivered soldiers’ permits to visit families.

Left letters to her descendants.

3. Grace Mitchell


Territorial Force nurse.

Worked in French, Belgian and German hospitals.

Evacuated victims to Britain.

Took photos and left an album.

2 Choose an element from the list below and explain why it would be an appropriate symbol of the 2010s.

robot-assisted surgery


3-D printers

cloud gaming

electric or hybrid vehicles

smart devices (tablets, smartphones, smartwatches, etc.)

Les clés du sujet

Document 1


Helen Mavin est conservatrice aux musées impériaux de la Guerre (Imperial War Museums), un groupe de cinq musées consacrés aux guerres de l’Empire britannique, de la Première Guerre mondiale à nos jours.

Pour en savoir plus :

Résumé du texte

Le texte retrace l’histoire du coquelicot en tant que symbole du souvenir de la Première Guerre mondiale. Cette fleur poussait sur les champs ravagés par les batailles et a été l’objet de poèmes célébrant le courage des soldats, avant que la vente de coquelicots artificiels ne serve à financer des fonds d’aides aux victimes de cette guerre et à leurs familles.

Vocabulaire utile à la compréhension

Poppy (l. 1) : coquelicot ; to churn up (l. 6) : (ici) ravager ; shelling (l. 6-7) : bombardement ; servicemen (l. 15) : soldats ; to supply (l. 16) : fournir ; orphan (l. 18) : orphelin ; disabled (l. 19) : handicapé.

Document 2


Le magazine en ligne The Connexion est consacré à la vie quotidienne et culturelle en France, et est destiné aux anglophones qui s’y installent, afin de faciliter leur intégration.

Pour en savoir plus :

Résumé du texte

En mémoire de son arrière-grand-oncle Oswald et des soldats ayant combattu durant la Première Guerre mondiale, David Holdway-Davis a parcouru avec des motards de différentes nationalités le trajet emprunté à moto par Oswald, qui servit comme estafette lors de la bataille de la Somme.

Vocabulaire utile à la compréhension

Dispatch rider (l. 1) : estafette, messager ; far afield (l. 5) = far away ; hardship (l. 10) : épreuve ; gravestone (l. 12) : pierre tombale ; muster site (l. 20) : lieu de rassemblement (militaire) ; wreath (l. 22) : gerbe de fleurs ; to dodge (l. 41) : esquiver ; lice (l. 42) : poux ; awesome (l. 42-43) : impressionnant.

Les points de convergence

Les deux textes traitent des différentes manières dont on célèbre la mémoire des soldats qui ont combattu durant la Première Guerre mondiale.

Le sujet d’expression 1

Une direction possible

Les éléments biographiques proposés permettent de reconstituer une brève histoire de l’héroïne que vous choisirez et de s’en servir pour rendre un hommage plus général au rôle essentiel des femmes pendant les guerres.

Key ideas

Wars produce heroines as well as heroes, tribute has to be paid to them owing to their role during the wars. So many soldiers owe them their lives, they devoted all their time and strength to the soldiers. We haven’t always been as grateful as we should to such women.

Le sujet d’expression 2

Une direction possible

Tous les éléments proposés correspondent à l’importante et rapide évolution technologique de la décennie mais représentent des domaines très variés, allant des loisirs à la santé. L’élément choisi reflète donc votre vision de ces années. Votre choix peut par exemple se porter sur ce qui rend le plus de services à l’humanité.

Key ideas

This decade has seen the rise of technology at such a rate never before witnessed. Most aspects of our lives are involved, from leisure to surgery and new means of transportation. New technologies are our future and maybe the condition for our survival.