For children growing up in the nineteenth-century 'Golden Age' of children's literature, childhood was characterized as an enclosed, nurturing space, "a child's garden," or "kindergarten" as Wilhelm Froebel christened it in 1832; a place for cultivating imagination and play as in, for example, Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses (1885). Garden mud and puddles were for planting and for playing – how difficult for the children growing up in those gardens to anticipate and imagine the muddy trenches of the First World War.

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