Page 3667

3667 THE TWENTIETH CENTURY-THE GREAT WAR.

300 cannons, 130 of large calibre, besides

great numbers of trench mortars, machine

guns, and other trophies.

Both sides claimed the advantage. The

German Kaiser issued his usual bombastic

address declaring that, with the help of

God, the enemy had been defeated, that

they had failed to break through. The

French and British asserted that they

had achieved the main objects for which

they had begun the offensive. They

claimed that they had worn down the

Germans, weakened their morale, and

paved the way for victory in 1917. Moreover, the British pointed out that the

operations had served to train and season

their new army and to weld it into an

admirable fighting force, and they declared that only bad weather had saved

the Germans from being forced to make a

great retirement. Probably, if the truth

could be known, both sides were somewhat

disappointed with the results of the long

battle. The Allies had not progressed so

far as they had hoped, while the Germans

had suffered losses that could not be

repaired. Having tasted for so many

months the battering that the Allies

had been able to prepare in 1916, the

Germans looked forward with no eagerness to the far more terrific battering

that would be their portion in 1917.

Many neutral critics were inclined to

award the main advantages to the Allies,

and some compared the British and French

operations on the Somme with those of

Grant against Lee in 1864.

Meanwhile, Roumania had at last made

her decision. For a long time, scoffers

had declared that she would enter the

conflict in time to help the victors divide the spoils, while Maximilian Harden,

the great German editor, had said that

she would take the side that would win.

The decision was complicated by the fact

that King Ferdinand was a member of

the house of Hohenzollern, while his

Queen, Marie, was the daughter of a

British prince and a Russian princess;

the great mass of the people sympathized

with the Entente, particularly with Italy

and France, but German financial interests

were strong in the country. For many

months, Bucharest was a hotbed of intrigue, and counter-intrigue, and millions

were spent in influencing public sentiment

and purchasing the corruptible. In order to

prevent the Germans from obtaining it, the

British and Russians bought up great quantities of Roumanian grain and did what they

could to prevent the Teutons from obtaining petroleum and other supplies.

The sympathies of Queen Marie, a very

beautiful and accomplished woman, were

strongly with the Entente, while King

Ferdinand's German relationships did not

have so much influence upon him as his

imperial kinsman could have hoped.

Ferdinand had been heard to say: "I

am a Roumanian first and all the time.

I am no longer a German prince. I have

many near and dear German friends and

relations, but I have no German ties and

entanglements. Those who refer to me

as a Hohenzollern prince might as well

call me a Bourbon or Hapsburg prince.

I am neither one nor the other. I am a

Roumanian and King of Roumania."

For a long time, the Teutonic Powers

had felt uneasiness as to the future course

of Roumania, for it was known that the

Roumanian people were eager to free their

brethren in Transylvania from Austrian

rule. Austria stubbornly refused, however, to make any territorial concessions,

and the Teutonic rulers resorted alternately

to offers of Russian Bessarabia and to

veiled threats. Meanwhile, Roumania was

strengthening her army, and it was noted

by Teutonic agents that most of the

forces mobilized were drawn up on the

Bulgarian and Austro-Hungarian frontiers

and that few were stationed on the Russian