The Martyrdom of Nurse Cavell

The Martyrdom of Nurse Cavell
The Martyrdom of Nurse Cavell
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The Matyrdom of Nurse Cavell is a 1916 Australian feature-length film directed by Jack Gavin and Charles Post Mason about the execution of Edith Cavell during the First World War. The Matyrdom of Nurse Cavell was viewed as a rival to Nurse Cavell, also produced in 1916, and there was legal action by Jack Gavin’s backers. It is considered a Lost Film.

The story is told in four parts. The film starts at the English home of Edith Cavell before the war, then jumps forward six years to a Belgium hospital, where Cavell is working. The war is about to start and Dr Schultz suggests Nurse Cavell return home but she refuses.

Four months later Brussels has been occupied by the Germans and Cavell is tending wounded British, German and Belgium soldiers and secretly assisting those in danger to escape the Germans.

Searching the hospital, an incriminating letter from England is found describing Nurse Cavell’s assistance to a prisoner of war to escape. She is captured by the Germans secretly tried and sentenced to death.

The American Ambassador pleads for her life and the Reverend Gerard demands the right of see her and administer communion. The German officer Von Bissell grants a permit. She is sentenced and shot at 2am, her last words being: "Tell my friends I give my life willingly for my country. I have no fear or shrinking. I have seen death so often, it is not fearful or strange to me."