There is a tremendous raid in the morning and the whole upper air buzzes and zooms with the noise of aeroplanes. There are many fights over our sunlit fields. We go up to see Gwen at Horserace and suggest improvements in her garden. Raids continue the whole time. It is evident that the Germans are sending more fighters to protect their bombers, and our losses are therefore in higher proportion.
In the evening Vita and I discuss the high-spots in our life. The moment when I entered a tobacconist's shop in Smyrna, the moment when we took Ebury Street, our early days at Long Barn, the night that Nigel was born, the night at Kermanshah, and so on. Vita says that our mistake was that we remained Edwardian for too long, and that if in 1916 we had got in touch with Bloomsbury, we should have profited more than we did by carrying on with Mrs George Keppel, Mrs Ronald Greville and the Edwardian relics. We are amused to confess that we had never even heard of Bloomsbury in 1916. But we agree that we have had the best of both the plutocratic and the Bohemian worlds, and that we have had a lovely life.
LETTER V.S-W. TO H.N.4th September, 1940 Sissinghurst
Whenever the siren goes, I wonder where you are: in the Ministry, in the streets, in King's Bench Walk, in a theatre? It is bloody. Meanwhile we have found machine-gun bullets, one in the lake-field and one came through the roof of the garden shed. So, you see, I am right to tell you to keep indoors when they fight just overhead. They are nasty pointed things. We had a fine pyrotechnical display after dinner last night, when a German got caught in our searchlights and fired tracer-bullets. Blood-red they streamed down the sky. The rest of the night was quiet here.
At Tonbridge, where we change trains, there are two German prisoners. Tiny little boys of 16 they are, handcuffed together and guarded by three soldiers with fixed bayonets. They shuffle along sadly, one being without his boots, shuffling in thick grey socks. One of them just looks broken down and saturnine; the other has a superior half-smile on his face, as if thinking, 'My Ffihrer will pay them out for this.' The people on the platform are extraordinarily decent. They just glance at them and then turn their heads away, not wishing to stare. The sirens yell and we get into our train for Staplehurst. At Sissinghurst, we have tea and watch the Germans coming over in wave after wave. There is some fighting above our heads and we hear one or two aeroplanes zoom downwards. They flash like silver gnats above us in the air. The all-clear sounds at 6, but there is another warning at 8 which actually lasts till 5.30 am., but I go to sleep.
DIARY12th September, 1940
The damage done last night was less terrible than on the former four nights. The barrage put up by our A.A. guns has cheered people enormously, although people in the East End are still frightened and angry.
I lunch at the Savoy with Erika Mann. She is a fine woman. Knickerbocker dashes up to me aflame with rage. He says he has the best story in the world and the censors are holding it up. It is the story about the time-bomb outside St Paul's Cathedral which may go off at any moment and destroy the great work of Sir Christopher Wren. `Cannot the American people be brought in to share my anxiety?' Also why is he not allowed to mention the destruction of Bond Street and the Burlington Arcade, so dear to many Americans? I leave Erika and hurry back to put this right. Cyril Radcliffe is most helpful. The reason why the story about St Paul's was held up is because no time-bombs may be mentioned. The reason why Bond Street is held up is that Knickerbocker had written, 'That street, comparable to Fifth Avenue and the Rue de la Paix'. The censor held that the mention of those two streets might indicate to the enemy further desirable objectives! Anyhow Cyril gets the whole message cleared. Michel St Denise comes to see me. All the French emigres are at loggerheads. All of them come to see me and say how ghastly everyone else is. Dine with Guy Burgess at the Reform and have the best-cooked grouse that I have ever eaten. The bombardment begins again at 9.15. I have to walk back to the Ministry through a deserted London. I have no tin hat and do not enjoy it. When things get very hot, I crouch in a doorway. In one of them I find a prostitute. 'I have been drinking', she says: 'I am frightened. Please take care of me.' Poor little trull.
DIARY 13th September, 1940
There is a great concentration of shipping and barges in France, and it is evident that the Cabinet expect invasion at any moment. A raid starts at about II am. I go upstairs and go on with my work. At about 12.15 I meet Walter Monckton in the passage. He whispers, 'They have just dive-bombed Buckingham Palace, and hit it three times. The King's safe. The raid continues till about 2.30. There are delayed-action bombs in St James's Park and the whole park-side of the Foreign Office has been evacuated. I cannot find any trains at all running down to Kent and I have to give up going home. Another raid begins about 3.45. Bombs are dropping close to us in Howland Street and without warning. We go down to the dug-out. I then go up to the sixth floor and look over London. There is a triumphant double-rainbow circling the City and basing itself upon St Paul's which shines in the evening sun. At 9.15 the sirens start to yell again. It is a wonderful night with a full moon. When I get back to the M. of I., I start typing this, and as I do so, the guns boom.
A slack morning with the usual raid going on overhead. After luncheon there is a terrific dog-fight above us. Two 'planes come down near Sissinghurst village and one crashes in flames at Frittenden. We see a parachute descending slowly with the man below it wriggling as if on a pendulum. They take four German prisoners. The station at Staplehurst has been laid flat by a Spitfire which crashed upon its roof. A Spitfire comes down in Victor Gazalet's park, only a hundred yards from Swift's. In the evening we have the news. They say we have brought down 185 of the enemy against 30 of ours. They have again bombed Buckingham Palace. We are told that Goering is directing this campaign. If so, he must be a stupider man than I thought. There is another raid at night. Poor Vita worries about my going up tomorrow. As Priestley said tonight, London is in effect in the front line. Thank God they have got the delayed bomb out from under St Paul's.
During the remaining months of 1940 the bombardment of London was intensified. The German survivors of the air-fights which V. Sackville-West watched from her garden went on to bomb Harold Nicolson in London—or so she imagined, for her days and nights were filled with anxiety for him. He reacted with a physical courage which surprised him. When the Blitz grew really bad, he slept in his office at the Ministry of Information, a huge concrete tower which stood up to at least six direct hits, and walked back each morning through the littered streets to breakfast at King's Bench Walk. The diary became fuller as his evenings became emptier. London social life was almost dead and he needed some distraction from the perpetual bombing. An average of 200 German bombers came over London every night for 57 nights in succession. 'At this time', wrote Winston Churchill, 'we saw no end but the demolition of the whole Metropolis.' Goering switched the weight of his attacks to provincial cities (the worst, and one of the first, was directed against Coventry on 14th November) when Londoners had taken almost more than they could stand. It was only in the next year that an adequate defence against night-bombing was found in radar-controlled anti-aircraft guns and night-fighters.
Harold Nicolson was closely informed about the material and psychological effects of the bombardment, for he was representing his Ministry on the Cabinet's Civil Defence Committee. At the same time he was much concerned with the propaganda aspects of events abroad—de Gaulle's failure at Dakar, the relations between the Axis powers and Vichy France, Mussolini's invasion of Greece, American reactions to the attack on London and our retaliatory bombing of Berlin, the mounting losses of British shipping in the Atlantic, and (a bonus to the British at the end of the year) Wavell's offensive against the Italian desert Army. He was even busier than during the Battle of Britain. He spent most week-ends and even Christmas Day in the Ministry. He constantly attended the House of Commons and spoke at meetings in all parts of the country. In the last week of December he began a fortnight's tour of the Ministry's Regional Centres.
DIARY 17th September, 1940
Down to the House. I have a question to answer. Chamberlain is there for the first time after his operation. He has aged much: his nose looks larger and his head and face smaller. Winston warns us that the bombing will get worse and that the Germans may seek to land 500,000 men in this country. I must say that he does not try to cheer us up with vain promises. Have a talk with Clem Davies and Euan Wallace afterwards. Everybody is worried about the feeling in the East End, where there is much bitterness. It is said that even the King and Queen were booed the other day when they visited the destroyed areas. Clem says that if only the Germans had had the sense not to bomb west of London Bridge there might have been a revolution in this country. As it is, they have smashed about Bond Street and Park Lane and readjusted the balance. The only thing I really mind myself is walking back from the Club after dinner under bombardment. I know that it is unwise to do so, and our motto should be 'Where I dine, I sleep.' Tonight I try a new experiment and dine at the White Tower in Percy Street. At 8.10 the siren howls and I walk back to the Ministry. By the time I enter the forecourt the guns have started booming. I therefore find myself back in my room at 8.30 with no books or wireless and my work locked away. I type this as something to do. At the back of everybody's mind is this question: 'Hitler has done great material and moral damage in London by employing only a few 'planes on nightly raids. He can, if he wants, send 'planes across London for the whole twenty-four hours. Shall we be able to stand it?'
DIARY18th September, 1940
To the Civil Defence Committee of the Cabinet. The Home Secretary tells us that during the last two nights the Germans have dropped land-mines by parachute. These engines of destruction carry a lateral drive of 500 yards. We have recovered one and taken it down to Portsmouth to be examined. Miss Horsbrugh tells us that evacuation and relief are being improved. The East End people now refuse to be sent to the West End, especially anywhere near Buckingham Palace. There are still 32 unexploded bombs on the Southern Railway. Bevin presses for communal feeding, an issue of some ersatz helmets and more ingenuity on the part of works-managers to avoid wastage of working hours. As I write this (8.10 pm.) the first gun booms out for the bombardment which I know will continue all night.
DIARY19th September, 1940
We all refuse to face the fact that unless we can invent an antidote to night-bombing, London will suffer very severely and the spirit of our people may be broken. Already the Communists are getting people in shelters to sign a peace-petition to Churchill. One cannot expect the population of a great city to sit up all night in shelters week after week without losing their spirit. The only solution I can see at present are reprisals, which we are both unable and unwilling to exert. If we are saved, we shall be saved by our optimism. Few people really believe that this ordeal can be continued for ever. They hope that 'something may turn up'. And, by God, so it may. I think we shall win through owing to our unswerving pride. I get sleepy and go back to my room. I turn out the lights and listen to the bombardment. It is continuous, and the back of the museum  opposite' flashes with lights the whole time. There are scudding low clouds, but above them the insistent drone of the German 'planes and the occasional crump of a bomb. Night after night, night after night, the bombardment of London continues. It is like the Conciergerie, since every morning one is pleased to see one's friends appearing again. I am nerveless, and yet I am conscious that when I hear a motor in the empty streets I tauten myself lest it be a bomb screaming towards me. Underneath, the fibres of one's nerve-resistance must be sapped. There is a lull now. The guns die down towards the horizon like a thunderstorm passing to the south. But they will come back again in fifteen minutes. We are conscious all the time that this is a moment in history. But it is very like falling down a mountain. One is aware of death and fate, but thinks mainly of catching hold of some jutting piece of rock. I have a sense of strain and unhappiness; but none of fear. One feels so proud.
DIARY20th September, 1940
I dine at the Travellers with Gladwyn Jebb. We talk about propaganda in Germany, with which he is much concerned. He does not care for our Mr Pick. It seems that the latter was asked to luncheon by Winston Churchill. He announced that he would never countenance any form of propaganda which was not in accordance with the strict truth and his own conscience. Winston replied, 'I am indeed flattered and proud to find myself at luncheon with so exceptional a man.' This left Pick guessing. We have a pleasant quiet dinner and my affection for Gladwyn warms my soul. In the middle of it there is a bomb which sets the Club swaying slightly as if in an earthquake. At 8.45 Gladwyn and I start off in his car and in pitch darkness return to our respective offices. The guns are flashing over the northern heights, but no bombs fall as we creep through the empty streets.
DIARY22nd September, 1940 Sissinghurst
We dine with the Drummonds. There is, as always, that sense of mahogany and silver and peaches and port-wine and good manners. All the virtues of aristocracy hang about those two crippled and aged people, and none of the vulgarity of wealth. We listen to the news while distant bombardments thump and crunch over the hills and plains of Kent. Priestley gives a broadcast about the abolition of privilege, while I look at their albums of 1903 and the Delhi Durbar and the Viceroy's train. Priestley speaks of the old order which is dead and of the new order which is to arise from its ashes. These two old people listen without flinching. I find their dignity and distinction and patriotism deeply moving. I glance at the pictures of the howdahs and panoply of the past and hear the voice of Priestley and the sound of the guns. We go out into the autumn night and see the searchlights swinging their shafts across the sky. There are clear stars and a moon struggling in eastern clouds. I write this before going to bed. A butterfly with white outstretched legs and dark closed wings has settled upon the black cloth of the screen across my window. Beyond it I can hear the drone of an aeroplane. Tomorrow I return to London and the bombardment which goes on and on and on.
DIARY24th September, 1940
I detect in myself a certain area of claustrophobia. I do not mind being blown up. What I dread is being buried under huge piles of masonry and hearing the water drip slowly, smelling the gas creeping towards me and hearing the faint cries of colleagues condemned to a slow and ungainly death. Always as I write this diary the guns boom. One writes that phrase, yet it means nothing. There is the distant drum-fire of the outer batteries. There is the nearer crum-crum of the Regent's Park guns. Then there is the drone of aeroplanes and the sharp impertinent notes of some nearer batteries. FF-oopb ! they shout. And then in the middle distance there is the rocket sound of the heavy guns in Hyde Park. One gets to love them, these angry London guns. And when they drop into silence, one hears above them, irritating and undeterred, the dentist's drill of the German aeroplanes, seeming always overhead, appearing always to circle round and round, ready always to drop three bombs, flaming, and then . . . crump, crump, crump, somewhere. Is it Bond Street, or Lincoln's Inn Fields? Are Victorian or Georgian buildings slipping down under the crunch of that distant noise? I feel no fear nor anger. Hum and boom. Always I write my nightly diary to that accompaniment.
DIARY 25th September, 1940
It was a bad night. As I leave the office to walk to King's Bench Walk, I see two bandaged people being put into an ambulance. There is a cold bright sun and a cloudless sky with the barrage-balloons shining silver and small. But in the lower sky hangs a pall of smoke and there is a smell of burning in the air. I walk through Lincoln's Inn and am stopped by firemen. Water and soot and burnt paper everywhere. The Hall of the Middle Temple has a bomb through the roof and all the stained glass has been blown out into Lamb Court where it lies smashed and twisted. A block of Chambers is down in Elm Court and another in Crown Office Row. Mrs Groves  had tried to spend the night in the tube, but when she got there she found the whole place full up with 'foreigners'. “Greeks, they were, sir, by the look of them, and they made themselves comfortable with mattresses and suchlike. I never did hold with foreigners. My father was an Indian Mutiny veteran and always warned me against them since I was a child.” She also tells me that St Clement's Dane has been hit “something frightful.” 'Is the steeple down?' I ask. “…didn't notice that, sir. I never look up.”
Back to the Ministry. We get the news about de Gaulle. The whole thing has failed utterly and we are withdrawing our forces. Many casualties have been caused on both sides. It is about as bad a show as it could be. It will ruin de Gaulle's prestige and will affect Winston's. The effect on France and America will be deplorable. I am deeply depressed. Why is it that we are never successful? This is worse than Norway. What we need is a neat little triumph somewhere.
I do not feel that I am pulling my weight in the Ministry, and that makes me feel that I have mighty little weight to pull. I lack authority in this place, which is not due to any lack of unwillingness in others, but to my own lack of strength and drive. I am too acquiescent.
DIARY29th September, 1940 Sissinghurst
I read Vanity Fair and write an article for the Round Table. The bits of Vanity Fair which I can recognise as trailing on into my own life are now dead. Vita and I discuss how human vanity, expressed in the nineteenth century by snobbishness, will express itself in the twentieth. It was not that they liked peers and baronets as such, but that they wanted to prove that they were connected with the governing class. The urge to be identified with the elite will always be an urge in active men. But where are they to fmd the elite? In Russia and Germany today a whole class of `party members' and children of party members must be growing up, as selective as any Debrett. The old aristocracy may be derided, as after the Wars of the Roses, but even as then the Cecils and others emerged, so some new class will emerge now. They will grapple privileges for their children. It is impossible, in fact, to achieve equality of opportunity. The only thing to do is to go to bed and not bother about such things. Therefore I go to bed. But I shall always be fascinated by this problem.
LETTERV.S-W. TO H.N.8th October, 1940 Sissinghurst
Lord ! we have had a lot of raids this morning. They began at 8.30 and are still going on at 1. There was a most lovely sight: ten white machines climbed absolutely sheer, leaving perfectly regular white streaks of smoke like furrows in a cloudless blue sky, while a machine lower down looped smoke like gigantic spectacles before shooting up to join its friends. We saw one catch fire and fall. 'That's one less to go after Hadji', I thought. She called him Hadji throughout her life.
DIARY 8th October, 1940
Go round to see Julian Huxley at the Zoo. He is in an awkward position since he is responsible for seeing that his animals do not escape. He assures me that the carnivores are perfectly safe, although a zebra got out the other day when its cage was bombed and bolted as far as Camden Town. While we are at supper a fierce raid begins and the house shakes. We go on discussing war aims. He feels that the future of the world depends upon the organisation of economic resources and the control by the U.S.A. and ourselves of raw materials. The raid gets very bad, and at 8.3o he offers to drive me back. It is a heavenly moonlit night, and the searchlights are swaying against a soft mackerel sky and a great calm moon. The shells light up their match-flares in the sky. A great star-shell creeps slowly down over the city under a neat parachute. We hear loud explosions all round as he drives me bravely back to the Ministry.
DIARY 15th October, 1940
Last night was the worst that we have had since 7th September. There is a meeting of the War Cabinet's Civil Defence Committee with Herbert Morrison  in the chair. We are told that the only two railway stations still able to handle the morning mail are Paddington and King's Cross. All the rest are out of action. The Germans have been sending fighter-bombers in groups of three which have flown comparatively low. People are not at all happy about our ability to cope with this new form of warfare and we are rather grim. Morrison says, 'Well, let's all indulge in wishful thinking.' In the East End they are saying that the diminution of our barrage defence is because we have run out of shells. I go down to the Chamber where I listen to Duff Cooper answering some questions. There is some anxiety in the lobbies since people feel that the public, having got over the shock of the first bombardments, are now worried about this second phase. In particular they are frightened by the magnetic mine which the Germans drop and which does such terrific damage. One was dropped in St James's Park yesterday and damaged both St James's Palace and the Foreign Office simultaneously. I go back to the Ministry and then to the Beefsteak, which has been badly shaken. I find Harold Macmillan sadly contemplating the ruin of Leicester Square. He tells me that he had been in the Carlton Club last night when the bomb fell. He had been having a glass of sherry before dinner with David Margesson. They heard the bomb screaming down and ducked instinctively. There was a loud crash, the main lights went out and the whole place was filled with the smell of cordite and the dust of rubble. The side-lights on the tables remained alight, glimmering murkily in the thick fog which settled down on everything, plastering their hair and eye-brows with thick dust. They saw through the fog the figure of Quintin Hogg escorting old Hailsham from the ruins, like Aeneas and Anchises. There were some 120 people in the Club at the time and nobody was hurt. An astonishing escape.
DIARY17th October, 1940
King's Bench Walk is still all right and Mrs Groves is there, as determined as usual to pretend that all is unchanged. I used to be irritated by the Cockney love of the familiar, feeling that it closed their minds to new experiments, but now their obstinate clinging to the rock of our tradition fills me with pride. I go to the smoking-room with Harry Crookshank  and Charles Waterhouse. Winston is at the next table. He sits there sipping a glass of port and welcoming anyone who comes in. 'How are you?' he calls gaily to the most obscure Member. It is not a pose. It is just that for a few moments he likes to get away from being Prime Minister and feel himself back in the smoking-room. His very presence gives us all gaiety and courage. People gather round his table completely unawed. They ask him questions. Robert Cary makes a long dissertation about how the public demand the unrestricted bombardment of Germany as reprisals for the raids on London. Winston takes a long sip at his port gazing over the glass at Cary. 'My dear sir', he says, 'this is a military and not a civilian war. You and others may desire to kill women and children. We desire (and have succeeded in our desire) to destroy German military objectives. I quite appreciate your point. But my motto is "Business before Pleasure”. We all drift out of the room thinking, 'That was a man!’
DIARY22nd October, 1940
There is a Press Conference for Lord Lothian. He sits there quite placidly under the glare of arc-lamps and the barrage of questions. He manages the thing with consummate ease. He says that in the early stages America had felt that this was merely a European war. They had rather despised us for our muddle in Norway. Then came the collapse of France and the sudden realisation that the British Fleet was their first line of defence. In July they were really terrified that we would go the same way as France. Then came Dunkirk, the triumph of the R.A.F., the abandonment of invasion and the Pact with Japan. Those four things swung American opinion over in six weeks. They were still averse to any European commitments, but they had come to understand that our interests and the strategic points of the Commonwealth were essential to themselves. It was a fine talk and it went well. Our Press were delighted. Then refreshments. I creep out to a hotel in Russell Square. It is hell. A great ugly room filled with Belgian refugees and a gloomy set dinner which is uneatable. I creep back in the dark fog with stars and shells glimmering overhead.
LETTER H.N. TO V.S.W.23rd October, 1940 Ministry of Information
We have had an easier time lately, and as I write this, there is not the usual sound of guns crashing. Hitler is preparing some Mediterranean coup. He has already been plotting something with Laval and will be seeing Franco shortly. All very unpleasant, but not nearly as disturbing as the invasion of England. How history repeats itself! First the great battles of Jena and Austerlitz. Then the threatened invasion of England and the camp at Boulogne. Then the Peninsular War. And then, let us hope, Moscow, Leipzig and Waterloo.
DIARY26th October, 1940
My train from Leicester is much delayed by air-raids and I get to the office very late. I am shown the latest telegrams. They make the blood run cold. A telegram from Sam Hoare  to the Prime Minister evidently based on very reliable information, which I suspect to be the French Ambassador and therefore quite authentic. The Germans have offered Petain peace on condition that
(1) he 'restores' Alsace-Lorraine to Germany;
(2) he gives Italy the Department of Alpes Maritimes;
(3) he allows Germany to remain in possession of the Channel ports plus a corridor down to Spain for the duration of hostilities;
(4) half Tunis and Algeria is ceded to Italy;
(5) Morocco is given to Spain;
(6) the French colonies in Africa are administered by a joint German-Italian and French Commission;
(7) all French bases and aerodromes in Africa and the Mediterranean are placed at the disposal of Germany and Italy;
(8) France 'safeguards' the flank of Italy's attack on Egypt, Syria and Algeria;
(9) the French Fleet in the Mediterranean is placed at the disposal of our enemies.
If the French do not accept these terms, Hitler will 'starve' France. If they do accept, then their prisoners will be released and they will be given food. These terms have filled us with anger and alarm. We have already taken certain steps. The King has telegraphed direct to Petain begging him not to accept such iniquitous terms. We have sent a similar message to Weygand. And above all Roosevelt has sent a message to Petain which should make him sit up. He tells him quite frankly that if he commits this enormity, he will destroy the respect which America has felt for France for 150 years and will make it quite impossible for America to send any relief to France. Poor old Petain may resign. Weygand may come over to us. But Laval and Baudouin will be there to obey the German orders. What will the French people say? I fear so much that we shall now have a peace offer from Hitler which will be difficult to explain away to our people. I talk to Charles Peake before going to bed. He shares my anxiety about the French situation. Halifax is down at Chequers to be with Winston. Charles shows me a pathetic little draft of peace-terms drawn up by Halifax. It is all about God.
DIARY28th October, 1940
Motor up to London with Sam. At 3 am. this morning the Italians addressed an ultimatum to Greece. Metaxas refused and war will ensue. It is rumoured that Athens was bombed at dawn. Lunch with Guy Burgess and Isaiah Berlin, who is just back from Washington. There is such a sense of suspense in the air that ordinary work seems hopeless.
DIARY29th October, 1940
I have a talk with Charles Peake about the German peace terms to France. Unless we are quick and clever, Laval will give the French people one teaspoonful of the terms at a time. Our business is to tell them at once what they are in for, including the Alpes Maritimes to Italy and Indo-China to Japan. We go to see Duff: 'This', I say, 'is the supreme moment for a calculated indiscretion.' He takes it at once, and says he will bring it up in the Cabinet in half-an-hour's time. He does so. We are authorised to arrange a leakage, provided that it does not compromise the French Ambassador in Madrid. We therefore get Reuter to put it out in different terms, and as if it came from Stockholm and Zurich. It gets on the tape by 6 pm. A good piece of work. Dine with Diana [Cooper] at the Dorchester. I tell them of the German terms to France which are by now on the tape. They do not believe it. They say it is 'a German balloon'. I go back in a taxi which I find providentially. It is a calm star-lit night with guns flashing in the distance.
 Mrs St Aubyn, H.N.'s sister, was now living at this little house, half a mile from Sissinghurst.
 During this fortnight (24th August-6th September) Fighter Command lost a quarter of its pilots and 466 Hurricanes and Spitfires.
 This was the first main daylight attack on London. As it coincided with the massing of invasion barges in the French Channel ports, and the moon and tide conditions were right, the British Chiefs of Staff concluded that invasion was imminent and the warning code-word 'Cromwell' was issued by Home Forces at 8 pm. that night.
 The daughter of Thomas Mann, the German novelist, and wife of W. H. Auden.
 The barrister. Later the first Viscount Radcliffe. He had been in the Ministry of Information since the outbreak of war, and was to become its Director-General, 1941-45.
 Dramatist, actor and producer. Head of the French section of the B.B.C. 1940-44.
 Two bombs fell in the quadrangle of Buckingham Palace, 3o yards from the room where the King was talking to his Private Secretary. The same attack wrecked the Chapel at the Palace. The King was badly shaken.
 In January 1947, H.N. pencilled a marginal note against this date: 'This was the day we won the Battle of Britain'.
 This was the abortive raid on Dakar. A large Anglo-French force, headed by de Gaulle in person, appeared off Dakar in West Africa on 23rd September with the object of winning over the French garrison to the Gaullist cause. The plan had leaked, and Vichy reinforced Dakar before de Gaulle arrived. His ultimatum was rejected, and a three-day battle between the Anglo-French fleet and the Vichy ships and shore-batteries in Dakar resulted in a War Cabinet decision, with the concurrence of the local commanders, to abandon the expedition as too costly and likely to involve Britain in war with France.
 But Churchill wrote in Their Finest Hour, describing this period of the Blitz: `The abandonment by the Germans of all pretence of confining the airwar to military objectives had raised this question of retaliation. I was for it, but I encountered many conscientious scruples.'
 British Ambassador in Washington. He died seven weeks later.
 The Tripartite Pact between Germany, Italy and Japan was signed in Berlin on 27th September.
 This meeting between Hitler and Marshal Petain had taken place at Montoire, near Tours, on 24th October. The full text of the agreement has not yet been published, but it is doubtful whether any ultimatum was given to Main or such details were entered into as H.N. records. But it was bad enough. Petain assented to Hitler's statement that 'the Axis Powers and France have an identical interest in seeing the defeat of England accomplished as soon as possible'.
 The President's message to Petain emphasised that if the French Fleet were allowed to fall into German hands, such action would constitute a flagrant breach of faith with the United States Government.
 Paul Baudouin was Minister of Foreign Affairs in Pętain's Government. On 28th October he was succeeded by Pierre Laval.
 Head of the News Department in the Foreign Office and Chief Press Adviser to the Ministry of Information.
 Francis St Aubyn, H.N.'s brother-in-law. He was to succeed to the peerage of St Levan on l0th November, 1940.
 Mussolini attacked Greece through Albania without the consent or even knowledge of Hitler, whom he met at Florence that same day.