Ernest Hemingway’s Blood and Money


In 1918, shortly before the culmination of the First World War, writer Ernest Hemingway was wounded by an Austrian mortar which exploded near him at Fossalta di Piave. He was a Red Cross ambulance driver at the time.

Around thirty years later, Hemingway revisited the same spot during his trip to Venice. Initially, he wanted to defecate at the spot as a form of symbolism. However, he reconsidered and instead, he used a stick to dig a hole and buried a 1,000 lira note there. He said that with this action, he had contributed both blood and money to the Italian soil.

Note that the protagonist in Hemingway’s 1950 novel Across the River and into the Trees, carried out a similar deed, the key difference was that the money he contributed was a 10,000 lira note.


Owen, Richard (2017). Hemingway in Italy.

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My name Edmark M. Law. I work as a freelance writer, mainly writing about science and mathematics. I am an ardent hobbyist. I like to read, solve puzzles, play chess, make origami and play basketball. In addition, I dabble in magic, particularly card magic and other sleight-of-hand type magic. I live in Hong Kong. You can find me on Twitter` and Facebook. My email is

7 thoughts on “Ernest Hemingway’s Blood and Money

  1. Hemingway always had a way of making fantasy out of realism. Nobody can do that without living it. Great info as always Edmark. I want to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Not to forget all the other seasonal celebrations.


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