Friday, 23 May 2008

John L. Myres: 'the passionate ubiquity of the Flying Dutchman'

In March 1917 John L. Myres, who had been conducting raids on the Anatolian coast, was posted to Syra. Compton Mackenzie (Aegean Memories, 1940) described his arrival:
A scholar of mundane reputation before the war, Professor J.L. Myres was now a Lieutenant-Commander in the R.N.V.R. In appearance he resembled some Assyrian king with more than a suggestion of the pirate Teach, and to such an outward form were added the passionate ubiquity of the Flying Dutchman and the fierce concentration of Captain Ahab. During the previous year he had organized a series of cattle raids on the Anatolian seaboard which in the end were stopped because it was alleged that they were doing more harm to the Greek population in Asia Minor than to their Turkish masters.

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