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THE SECOND YEAR OE THE WAR 13
ï within the great Vilna salient in the middle
of September was the most serious of all.
The salient began to appear upon the map
in the first ten days of September. It
grew pronounced in the following week
and round about the 17th or 18th of the
pl · month, those who were following the pro-
r gress of the German envelopment re-
l marked with astonishment to the north
l of Vilna an extremely rapid advance day
by day which could only indieate the use
of eavalry. As a matter of fact, it was
later learnt that by far the largest body of
cavalry in this war had been launched by
the Germans to the north of Vilna: No
e , less than 40,000 sabres accompanied by
, ­ 1.40 mounted pieces swarmed all up the
higher portions of the Vilia River and all
but enveloped the great Russian forces
“ within the curve. It was a curiously
daring performance and, as the event
A, turned out, a perfectly futile one. Some-
thing like one-half of this great force was
_ lost in the ensuing week. Cavalry is, of
.2 all the arms, the most delicate to handle ;
l its rapid action at the beginning of any
strategic movement where it can be used
l is modified by the enormous supply of the
l horses needed, and already early as the
1
l