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British officer of 25th Cavalry (Frontier Force) regiment, 1913

Indian army

Raised 1849 as 5th Regiment of Punjab Cavalry.
1851 – 5th Regiment of Cavalry, Punjab Irregular Force.
1865 – 5th Regiment of Cavalry, Punjab Frontier Force.
1901 – 5th Punjab Cavalry.
1903 – 25th Cavalry (Frontier Force).

In 1921, with the reorganization of the British Army in India, the 25th Cavalry (Frontier Force) amalgamated with the 22nd Sam Browne’s Cavalry (Frontier Force) to become 22/25th Cavalry (Frontier Force).

1922 – 12th Cavalry (Frontier Force).
1927 – Sam Browne’s Cavalry (12th Frontier Force).
1940 – 1st Indian Armoured Corps Centre.

In 1947 after Independence, allocated to Pakistan Army.

1947 – Pakistan Armoured Corps Centre.
1955 – Re-raised 12th Cavalry (Frontier Force)

Battle Honours: Delhi, Lucknow, Charasiah, Kabul 1879, Afghanistan 1878-80.

Composition (1901): Sikhs, Dogras, Hindustani Muhammadans, Punjabi Muhammadsans and Pathans.

The regiment, during the second Afghan war, was under the command of Major General Frederick Roberts, participating actively in the battle of Charasiah, where they demonstrated their bravery in combat. Therefore, together with the 9th the Queen’s Royal Lancers, they served as escort to the entrance in Kabul of Lord Roberts.

In 1915 the regiment was sent to East Africa (Tanzania) to fight against the German troops of the Colonel and future General Paul Von Lettow-Vorbeck, just to the Portuguese border of Mozambique.

A letter of 1913 written by an officer of the 25th gives a very full description of the full dress uniforms. This was dark green but in is in fact black, with scarlet collar and cuffs, with gold lace and piping. The full dress British officers wore a Husar shaped tunic with five strands in each row not plaited. In 1909 the gold stripes of overalls was changed by red stripes. This was a Mameluk hilted sword.

This regiment was the only one of the Indian cavalry to wear on the streamer banner the flask cord, cord raised in the cavalry of the Royal Guard.

It was one of the regiments that later adopted the Wolseley pith, initially with the white lungi and later –as shown in the figure – became red.


British officer of 2nd Lancers (Gardner's Horse) regiment, 1918

Indian army

This regiment is one of the oldest and most honoured of the British Colonial Army of India.
During World War I, it was stationed in the rear of the Expeditionary Corps in France, being part of the 5th Cavalry Brigade (Mhow) of the 1st Division of India.

It collaborated, assuming fun ctions of the infantry, digging trenches. Later it was destined to the western front and took part in the battles of the Somme, Bazentin, Flers-Courcelette through the Hindemburg line and also in the battle of Cambrai.
In 1918 it was transferred to the Middle East with the Expeditionary Force of Egypt (10th Cavalry Brigade, 4th Cavalry Division of the Desert Mounted Corps). It participated in the campaigns of Palestine and Sinai, taking part in the conquest of the JordaBritish officer of 2nd Lancers (Gardner's Horse) regiment, 1918n Valley. It was present at the end of that year in the last battles of the Mesopotamia campaing against the Ottoman Empire and definitively returned to India in 1920.
The uniform that was first assigned to the troop was dark green with scarlet facings and silver lace, the change from green with light blue facings coming in 1886. The turban was dark blue with bluish-grey stripes.
From 1897, the khaki colour was adopted for the drill and campaign uniform. The turban of this uniform remained light blue, with red kulla, as you can see in the figure, which represents a British officer in the 1918 campaign in Mesopotamia. The officer wears a red kummerband and both boots and leggings are brown leather. The rest of the equipment corresponds to that of the officers in campaign during World War I.
The cruppers was discarded since 1890. Final pattern saddle was adopted. Breastplates had by this time been discarded, their main use for many years having been as a means of displaying a regimental crest on ceremonial occasions.


Officer of 15th (Cureton's Multani) Regiment of Bengal Cavalry, 1887

Indian army

The uniform before 1886 was rifle green with scarlet facings and gold lace. It was then changed to dark blue. After becoming lancers in 1890 the lancers pattern belts were worn.
From 1897 a hot review order in khaki was introduced. For the native officers it was exactly the same uniform as the previous one, and except for the colour of the blouse, all other items of this dress were the same as worn in full dress.

With the change to Lancers the pouch belts were scarlet with engraved plated flap and bore a crown in silver over B.L. On the front of the pouch belt a special regimental device was carried: in silver crossed lances and pennons, over crossing a star with the cipher 15. Below, a crescent inscribed Cureton’s Mooltanees.

The figure shows a Risaldar Major in 1887 wearing full dress uniform, all embroidery on the front, sleeves and cuffs being gold. He is wearing the Cavalry pattern pouch belt without chains and pickers. The shape of the turban is characteristic of the Pathans.

NOTE (1)

The Multani are a community found in the states of Haravana and Punjab, in India. The community derives its name from the city of Multan, situated in Pakistan. Multani literally means an inhabitant of the city of Multan.


Cavalryman of 2nd Lancers of Hyderabad Contingent, 1898

Indian army

The characteristic color of the contingent uniforms of Hyderabad was always green. Prior to their reconversion into lancers in 1890, the uniform for British officers was hussar style. The jacket had six rows of flames, the use of the sabretache is obligatory.
From 1890 the uniform changed, adapting that of lancers. It remained green, although darker (it became the green “rifle” of the metropolis). In the case of British officers the plastron of the coat became whole and white, with golden trim.
From that same date with the regulation produced in the uniforms of the princely states for the English officers, they could wear the uniform of the native officers, with dark green kurta and the turban with the same colors of the pugri of the helmet even for the uniforms on mounted parades including review order.

Characteristic of the Hyderabad regiments the chains on the pouch belts were suspended from a crown-shaped ornament.


Cavalryman of 7th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry, 1897

Indian army

Raised in 1846 as 16th Regiment of Bengal Irregular Cavalry.
1847 – 17th Regiment of Bengal Irregular Cavalry.
1861 – 7th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry.
1900 – 7th Regiment of Bengal Lancers.
1901 – 7th Bengal Lancers.
1903 – 7th Lancers.r /> 1904 – 7th Hariana Lancers.

In 1921 the 7th Hariana Lancers were amalgamated with the in 6th King Edward’s Own Cavalry to form the 6th/7th Cavalry.
In 1922 it became 18th King Edward’s Own Cavalry.

In 1947, after Independence the Regiment was part of the new Indian Army as 18th Light Cavalry.

Battle Honours: Punjab, Burma 1885-87.

Composition (1901): Sikhs, Dogras, Jats, Rajputs, Hindustani Muhammadans and Bramins.

The regimental color of the kurta was scarlet. For this reason the full dress of native officer was scarlet. The lungi is blue with gold stripes, the kullah is red and gold. The kurta has a gold lace with a piping of gold braid on collar, front and pocket edges.

The regulations of 1901 stated that “the British officers of the 7th Bengal Lancers will continue to wear uniform of Bengal Cavalry pattern but will adopt the Lancer pattern gradually as necessary”.

The figure corresponds to Neb Ram, the Risaldar (Lieutenant) who was the comissioned officer to travel to London for the Diamond. Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897. The saddle is the model of 1890, which remained in service until 1902. The cruppers was discarded in this pattern.


Cavalryman of Queen's Own Corps of Guides, Punjab Frontier Force, 1885

Indian army

It was in December 1846 that Lieut. H. B. Lumsden raised a troop of cavalry and two companies of infantry at Peshawar and from that moment until 1922, the Guides were one Corps.

In 1876, HM Queen Victoria was pleased to make them a royal regiment. Three Royal Cypher was granted for use on their appointments and they became The Queen’s Own Corps of Guides.

This regiment’s uniform was drab with facings in red and lace in drab silk. From the regulations of 1886 and 1901 to 1914 there was very little changes in the uniform of the Guides. The blue and white colour of the turban for the troops, is the same at the pugri of the British officers, however the Indian officers had a blue, white and gold turban.


British officer of 3rd Madras Light Cavalry, 1890

Indian army

The regiment was raised in 1784 as 2nd Regiment of Madras Native Cavalry. The battle honours before 1903: Mysore, Seringapatam, Mahidapore and Pezières (1917). The diferent composition before 1901 : Tamils, Rajputs and Punjabi Dogras The Madras Light Cavalry was distinguished by the light blue of their uniforms and it remained unchanged until the regiment became part of the new Indian Army after the Independence.

The tunic of British officers in  full dress uniform according to the regulations of 1886, is cut and laced in the ususal Husar style, colour being French grey with collar and cuffs of buf and all lace silver. The sabretache, worn only by British officers, made of purple leather. The purple velvet face was edged by silver lace. There was embroidered double’VR’ in the centre surmounted by an Imperial crown both in gold with a star at the bottom under wich  came the regimental badge and honorary distinctions of regimental pattern. On becoming lancers, the full dress for British officers was changed to that Lancer pettern, with de same colour of collar and cuffs.

British officers serving in India in the 19th century acquired leopard skins and adapted them for military purposes. It became customary for officers of hussars (light cavalry) to sit on a decorative leopard-skin flounce which was placed over the saddle.


Cavalryman of 1st Regiment of Bombay Light Cavalry, 1885

Indian army

The Regiment was raised as  in 1817 as 1st Regiment of Bombay Light Cavalry. The most important battle honours before 1903: Afghanistan, Ghuznee 1839, Punjab, Mooltan. Central India, Burma 1885-87.

The composition in 1901: Deccani Mahrattas, Jats, Sijs, Pathans.

Uniforme in 1 883 was dark Green, scarlet facings, gold lace. In 1903 it was dark blue, scarlet facings and gold lace.

Following the 1880 reform the regiment became a lancers regiment and the colour of both the drill uniform, field service uniform and battle dress were changed to khaki. The figure depicts a lancer in the Burma campaign of 1885-87 with the khaki uniform adopted a few years earlier.


Mounted Trumpeter of 34th Prince Albert Victor's Own Poona Horse, 1908

Indian army

The regiment was raised  1817 as the Auxiliary Horse. The composition after 1901 was: Rajputs, Rahtore Rajputss, Kaimkhanis, and Muhammadans.

Uniform from 1882 was dark Green with French grey facings and gold lace, chnaged in 1903 to dark blue with the same facings and lace. The dres s followed the usual pattern for Bombay Cavalry.

It was customary for trumpeters in the British army to carry both trumpet and bugle. Distinctive insignia were worn on the right shoulder.


Battle of Rorke's Drift,

Anglo-Zulu War

Diorama is made up of 16 figures.

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