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19th (Princess of Wales’s Own) Hussars - A Pair of Port Glasses, 1885-1902
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19th (Princess of Wales’s Own) Hussars - A Pair of Port Glasses, 1885-1902

Measurements: Height: 10cm (4in)

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Glass etched with the Assaye elephant won as a battle honour by the 19th Light Dragoons for participation in the victory of Major General Arthur Wellesley (later 1st Duke of Wellington) over the Mahratta army in 1803, crossed swords and the title ‘Princess of Wales’s Own’ awarded to the 19th Hussars (late 1st Bengal European Light Cavalry) for service in Gordon Relief Expedition of 1884-85.

Dating to the final decades of the 19th century the present pair of port glasses were quite possibly extremely well travelled. An antecedent regiment of The Light Dragoons, the 19th (Princess of Wales’s) Hussars returned home from its long period of Egyptian and Sudanese service in 1887. Its brief respite of home service ended in 1891 when ordered to Bangalore, India for the next five years. It came home in 1896 but was almost immediately sent to South Africa and was stationed at Ladysmith when the Second Boer War (1899-1902) broke out. The regiment fought at Rietfontein and Lombard's Kop in October 1899; and subsequently served through the defence of the town. After Ladysmith was relieved they joined the 5th Lancers and 18th Hussars under Major-General Brocklehurst, fighting constant skirmishes in the Eastern Transvaal - and making its noteworthy night charge at Lydenberg. On the declaration of peace in 1902, the regiment was re-titled the 19th (Alexandra, Princess of Wales's Own) Hussars, whence they remained in South Africa until 1904.

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