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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Where does this souvenir come from?


Matt Dixon

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I picked this chap up in a junk shop this morning for £1. At the bottom it says "The Allies 1914" and it stands about 7" tall.

I am guessing by the look of the chap he comes from one of the colonies (although he looks like a cross between a Red Indian and a Japanese!), but does anyone have any ideas where? Has anyone seen one of these before?

Thanks.

post-1048-1175024947.jpg

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It is a "Tommy" of the 2nd Boer War period. The thing around his head is a bandage in the original drawing.

IIRC it is used to illustrate one of Kipling's poems in the book "With the Flag to Pretoria".

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Why does it say 1914 on it, if it is a Boer period peice?

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I would imagine that somebody "coining in" on the spirit of 1914 turned a well known patriotic icon into a statuette, and added 1914.

Not very well done either, if you thought his bandage was a Japanese head dress.

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Tom, I think Bepp was referring to me as I posted a copy of the original illustration. I then saw that Phil B had done the same one minute before, so I deleted mine!

Tom

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Is the rifle for firing around corners?

Bruce

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Dash it Councillor Hubbard - I was just about to say the same thing. :lol:

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Matt,

It is the famous 'Gentleman in Kharki' from a drawing by Caton Woodville (famous military artist). As I have an old letter opener with this soldier on the end and it is a bit of a collectable.

http://www.boerwarsociety.org/Memorabilia.cfm

Hope this helps

Aye

Tom McC

I thought that Caton-Woodville called the image "The Absent Minded Begger" to match the Kipling poem of the same name. It was certainly one of the iconic images of the Boer War.

I believe that the poem was used to raise money for military charities for soldiers' families etc.

Tom the Walrus

The Absent-Minded Beggar

Rudyard Kipling

------------------------------------

WHEN you’ve shouted “Rule Britannia,” when you’ve sung “God save the Queen,”

When you’ve finished killing Kruger with your mouth,

Will you kindly drop a shilling in my little tambourine

For a gentleman in kharki ordered South?

He’s an absent-minded beggar, and his weaknesses are great—

But we and Paul must take him as we find him—

He is out on active service, wiping something off a slate—

And he’s left a lot of little things behind him!

Duke’s son—cook’s son—son of a hundred kings—

(Fifty thousand horse and foot going to Table Bay!)

Each of ’em doing his country’s work

(and who’s to look after their things?)

Pass the hat for your credit’s sake,

and pay—pay—pay!

There are girls he married secret, asking no permission to,

For he knew he wouldn’t get it if he did.

There is gas and coals and vittles, and the house-rent falling due,

And it’s more than rather likely there’s a kid.

There are girls he walked with casual. They’ll be sorry now he’s gone,

For an absent-minded beggar they will find him,

But it ain’t the time for sermons with the winter coming on.

We must help the girl that Tommy’s left behind him!

Cook’s son—duke’s son—son of a belted earl—

Son of a Lambeth publican—it’s all the same to-day!

Each of ’em doing his country’s work

(and who’s to look after the girl?)

Pass the hat for your credit’s sake,

and pay—pay—pay!

There are families by thousands, far too proud to beg or speak,

And they’ll put their sticks and bedding up the spout,

And they’ll live on half o’ nothing, paid ’em punctual once a week

’Cause the man that earns the wage is ordered out.

He’s an absent-minded beggar, but he heard his country call,

And his reg’ment didn’t need to send to find him!

He chucked his job and joined it—so the job before us all

Is to help the home that Tommy’s left behind him!

Duke’s job—cook’s job—gardener, baronet, groom

Mews or palace or paper-shop, there’s someone gone away!

Each of ’em doing his country’s work

(and who’s to look after the room?)

Pass the hat for your credit’s sake,

and pay—pay—pay!

Let us manage so as, later, we can look him in the face,

And tell him—what he’d very much prefer—

That, while he saved the Empire, his employer saved his place

And his mates (that’s you and me) looked out for her.

He’s an absent-minded beggar and he may forget it all,

But we do not want his kiddies to remind him

That we sent ’em to the workhouse while their daddy ham. mered Paul,

So we’ll help the homes that Tommy left behind him!

Cook’s home—Duke’s home—home of a millionaire,

(Fifty thousand horse and foot going to Table Bay!)

Each of ’em doing his country’s work

(and what have you got to spare?)

Pass the hat for your credit’s sake,

and pay—pay—pay!

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Tom,

Your quite right, I should have said the proverbial 'Gentleman in Kharki'. A lot of Caton Woodville's pictures were stirring stuff, one of a similar ilk is All That was Left of Them (17th Lancers)

Tom/Bep

Now I understand where the psychic energy was coming from ;)

Aye

Tom McC

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  • 11 months later...

You are right: I have in my collection a cigarette box illustrated with the same figure and in which there was multipaged small paper insert giving the text of this famous Kipling poem. 1 pence from every packet of these cigarettes sold went to help out the widos, families, children of killed British and Imperial (i.e.Colonial) forces.

John

Another piece is a Toronto enamel patriotic pin from Toronto daged 1901 showing the same figure, etc.....

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To bring this thread down to my usual, basic ,level. I think his gin could do with a bit of Viagra. Please dont try to straighten it or as sure as GOD made little apples it will drop off.

CHEERS FOR NOW.

JOHN FLOOK.

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To bring this thread down to my usual, basic ,level. I think his gin could do with a bit of Viagra.

Prefer tonic in mine

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