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What is ANZAC?. ANZAC = A ustralia and N ew Z ealand A rmy C orps. What it means today.

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What is ANZAC?

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what is anzac
What is ANZAC?

ANZAC = Australia and New Zealand Army Corps

what it means today
What it means today
  • Australians recognise 25 April as an occasion of national commemoration. Commemorative services are held at dawn, the time of the original landing, across the nation. Later in the day ex-servicemen and women meet and join in marches through the major cities and many smaller centres. Almost every town has a commemorative service of some kind. It is a day when Australians reflect on the many different meanings of war.
  • Each year the commemorations follow a pattern that is familiar to each generation of Australians. A typical ANZAC Day service contains the following features: introduction, hymn, prayer, an address, laying of wreaths, recitation, "The last post", a period of silence, "The rouse" or "The reveille", and the National Anthem. At the Australian War Memorial, following events such as the ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day services, families often place red poppies beside the names of relatives on the Memorial's Roll of Honor.
simpson and his donkey
Simpson and his Donkey

Of the many examples of sheer courage, the most remembered must be that of

"Simpson and his Donkey".

Jack (John) Simpson Kirkpatrick, was born in 1892 and learned all about donkeys a aboy when living in England.

In Perth on 23rd August 1914, Jack was accepted and chosen as a field ambulance stretcher bearer. He joined the 3rd Field Ambulance at Blackboy Hill camp, 35 km east of Perth on the same day.

During his twenty-four days of donkey trips, Simpson single handedly rescued around three hundred wounded soldiers by bringing them down Monash Valley on the backs of donkeys.

On the morning of 19 May, 42 000 Turkish soldiers launched an all-out attack against the 17 356 strong Anzac line, in attempt to drive the invaders back into the sea. The Turkish were caught out in the open and lost 3 000 men with 10 000 wounded in repeated attacks over open ground. The Anzacs lost only 168 men.

Jack had just collected a casualty and was coming back down Monash Valley when he was hit and killed by a machine gun bullet in the back. He was buried amongst great gloom by the soldiers who had much admired his bravery, and his grave was marked with a simple wooden cross.

He become one of Australia’s most famous, and best-loved military heroes.

anzac biscuits
ANZAC Biscuits
  • There are a few theories on the origins of ANZAC biscuits, but it is certain that they came about during the First World War, around 1914/15.
  • Some say that they started as biscuits made by the Troops in the trenches with provisions they had at hand to relieve the boredom of their battle rations. And some say they came about due to resourceful women on the "home front" in an endeavour to make a treat for their loved ones that would survive the long journey by post to the war front.
  • There is even the suggestion that they originated from Scottish Oatmeal Cakes which is entirely possible. Whatever the origin, they have won the hearts of all Aussies the globe over as the pseudo National Biscuit.
anzac biscuits1



  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats (regular oatmeal) uncooked
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 tbsp golden syrup (or honey)
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tbsp boiling water


Combine the flour (sifted), oats, coconut and sugar in a bowl.

Melt the butter and Golden Syrup (or honey) in a saucepan over a low heat..

Mix the bicarbonate of soda with the water and add to the butter and Golden Syrup.

Pour the liquids into the dry ingredients and mix well.

Spoon dollops of mixture, about the size of a walnut shell, onto a greased tin leaving as much space again between dollops to allow for spreading.

Bake in a moderate oven, 180C / 350F, for 15-20 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack and seal in airtight containers.


  • The American tablespoon is a little smaller than the British tablespoon, so be generous with your Golden Syrup (or Honey) and Water.
  • If you have any thoughts of keeping the biscuits for any length of time I suggest you keep them in a padlocked container!
  • For a little variety you may wish to add 2 teaspoons of ginger spice or even Wattle Seeds, a recent addition but don't ask me where to get them.
two up
Two - up
  • Two-up is Australia’s national gambling game. It involves 2 or 3 coins being tossed into the air and surrounding players betting upon the result. ANZAC day is the only day it is legal to play two up within Australia.

Australian Soldiers playing two-up, Ypres, 1917

two up rules abbreviated
Two – up rules (abbreviated)
  • The boxeror manager of the game sat with his coins, kips, string and money tray in the place where he could view the whole ring clearly.
  • The ringie, who was usually a friend who volunteered, ran the centre of the ring.
  • When the game was about to commence, there would be a number of people around and outside the circle. The boxer would call and ask for a spinner.
  • The kipwould then hold two or three pennies, depending on the game. (Some of the kips were smooth, with no ridges in the wood. It was illegal for anyone to use their fingers two toss the coins. Kips often had “lips” on the various kips for right or left handed spinners who were not adept at using the smooth kip.
  • It was the ringie’s job to ensure that the coins were tossed at least 10 feet into the air, and that they spun well and were not “feathered” in any way. If the coins didn't satisfy these specifications in his opinion, he would call “ foul toss ” and catch one of the coins.
  • The ringie would place the coins tail up on the kip. The call “come in spinner ” was made from the box. The spinner then tossed the coins. All pennies (whether two or three) had to fall within the circle. If one fell outside or on the circle, it was declared void by the ringie. The spinner then had another turn.
  • While this was happening, side bets were allowed around the ring. There were two distinct types of betting:
  • betting that the spinner would toss heads or tails
  • other tail betters would bet 3/1 that heads would not be tossed twice.
  • In all cases, the bets were held in front of the tail better, who covered them in every instance before the boxer called “come in spinner”.
  • The spinner had the right to continue spinning while ever he tossed heads.
  • Flowers have traditionally been laid on graves and memorials in memory of the dead. Rosemary, symbolising remembrance, is popular on Anzac Day. Laurel is also a commemorative symbol; woven into a wreath, it was used by the ancient Romans to crown victors and the brave as a mark of honour. In recent years, the poppy, strongly associated with Remembrance Day (11 November), has also become popular in wreaths on Anzac Day.

Anzac Day, Goulburn 1999.AWM 1999/72/11

prayer for the fallen
Prayer for the fallen

They do not grow old,

as we that are left grow old,

age shall not weary them,

nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun,

and in the morning,

we will remember them.

Lest we forget.


During much of the First World War the men had to fight in trenches such as these at Flanders. The trenches were often filled with water and rats. The men were seldom dry or comfortable.


This picture shows people celebrating the end of the First World War.Armistice was declared at 11:00 a.m on November 11, 1918.

The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month is when people everywhere pause to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we could live in peace.


Lets sing together.

Australian National Anthem

Australians all let us rejoiceFor we are young and freeWe've golden soil and wealth for toil,Our home is girt by sea:Our land abounds in nature's giftsOf beauty rich and rare,In history's page let every stageAdvance Australia fair,In joyful strains then let us singAdvance Australia fair.