Great War 100 Reads

Commemorating the centenary of the First World War in books

Monday Monuments and Memorials – Cenotaph, Old City Hall, Toronto

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The Toronto Cenotaph stands in front of Old City Hall, on Queen St W and Bay St. Architects William Ferguson and Thomas Pomphrey modelled it on the Whitehall Cenotaph in London. It is cut from granite from the Canadian Shield. The bronze dedication plaque on the north side shows the supporters of the Toronto coat of arms with heads bowed.

The base stone was laid on 24 July 1925 by Field Marshal the Lord Haig, Commander in Chief of the British Forces in the Great War. The cenotaph was unveiled on 11 November that year by Governor General Lord Byng of Vimy.

Newspaper accounts in early November 1925 tell of the controversy over “to all who served”, the words originally chosen for the monument. Inappropriate for a cenotaph, which means “empty tomb”. The words were changed: “to our glorious dead.” Score one for etymologists. Too bad for those who served but survived.

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Author: greatwar100reads

Canadian crusader for equality and justice. Connoisseur and creator of the written word. Commemorating the centenary of the First World War in books and monuments. Read more at greatwar100reads.wordpress.com.

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