It was at Mons in the third week of the Great War. The grey-green German hordes had overwhelmed the greater part of Belgium and were sweeping down into France whose people and military establishment were all unprepared for attack from that quarter. For days the little British army of perhaps 100,000 men, that forlorn hope which the Germans scornfully called "contemptible," but which man for man probably numbered more veteran fighters than any similar unit on either side, had been stoutly holding back the enemy's right wing and fighting for the delay that alone could save Paris. At Mons they had halted, hoping that here was the spot to administer to von Kluck, beating upon their front, the final check. The hope was futile. Looking back upon the day with knowledge of what General French's army faced-a knowledge largely denied to him-it seems that the British escape from annihilation was miraculous. And indeed it was due to a modern miracle-the conquest of the air by man in the development of the airplane.