Agatha Christie Wiki

World War I (often abbreviated as WWI or WW1), also known as the First World War, the Great War, the Seminal Catastrophe, and initially in North America as the European War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars".

World War I and Agatha Christie[]

With the outbreak of World War I in August 1914, Archibald Christie was sent to France to fight the German forces. They married on the afternoon of Christmas Eve 1914 at Emmanuel Church, Clifton, Bristol, which was close to the home of his mother and stepfather, while Archie was on home leave. Rising through the ranks, he was eventually stationed back to Britain in September 1918 as a colonel in the Air Ministry. Christie involved herself in the war effort as a member of the Voluntary Aid Detachment. From October 1914 to May 1915, then from June 1916 to September 1918, she worked a total of 3400 hours in the Town Hall Red Cross Hospital, Torquay, first as a nurse (unpaid) then as a dispenser (at £16 a year from 1917) after qualifying as an apothecaries' assistant. Her war service ended when Archie was reassigned to London, and they rented a flat in St. John's Wood.

World War I in the works by Agatha Christie[]

Christie had long been a fan of detective novels, having enjoyed Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White and The Moonstone, as well as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's early Sherlock Holmes stories. She wrote her own detective novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, featuring Hercule Poirot, a former Belgian police officer noted for his twirly large "magnificent moustaches" and egg-shaped head. Poirot had taken refuge in Britain after Germany invaded Belgium. Christie's inspiration for the character stemmed from real Belgian refugees who were living in Torquay and the Belgian soldiers whom she helped to treat as a volunteer nurse in Torquay during the First World War. She began working on The Mysterious Affair at Styles in 1916, writing much of it on Dartmoor. Her original manuscript was rejected by such publishing companies as Hodder & Stoughton and Methuen. After keeping the submission for several months, John Lane at The Bodley Head offered to accept it, provided that Christie change the ending. She did so, and signed a contract which she later felt was exploitative. It was finally published in 1920.

The Mysterious Affair at Styles[]

A group of Belgian refugees stays in the town of Styles St. Mary. One of them is a retired police officer named Hercule Poirot.

The Wife of the Kenite[]

Although the short story The Wife of the Kenite takes place after 1918, actions made during the war affects the present.

In a Glass Darkly[]

The unnamed narrator in the short story In a Glass Darkly is superficially wounded during the war, and is left with a scar on the right side of his face.