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Khedive’s Sudan Medal 1896-1908

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hello Les;

    I concur with the two comments made by Paul and Peter and perhaps I might be permitted to add a few other observations?

    The Khedive's Sudan Medal was issued to the Egyptian Army un-named but several units saw fit to engrave/impress the recipient's details on the medal. Having examined a number of these medals, and written a wee book on them, I can confirm that the naming on your example is consistent with all other medals to the XIIth Sudanese Bn. that I have seen. Naming was done with a series of metal punches and consisted of the recipient's personal number followed by a dash and then the battalion number, in this case 961 - 12.  We should remember that Arabic is named from Right to Left, except for numbers, which are read from Left to Right, as in English.This naming sequence was unique to this battalion amongst all of the Sudanese infantry battalions of the Egyptian Army.

    The XIIth Sudanese Bn. was initially raised in 1886 but disbanded shortly thereafter, only to be re-raised in 1888. As a half-strength battalion it fought at the Battle of Gemaizah in 1888, with 221 members earning the Egypt Medal and clasp. During the reconquest of the Sudan, the XIIth fought at Firket, Hafir, The Atbara, Khartoum ( Omdurman ) Gedaref and Talodi. The Khedive's Sudan Medal appears to have been initially issued almost universally with the first two clasps, as on your example, so your man may have been entitled to a few more clasps, if he survived the enemy and cholera epidemic.

    Judging by your man's number, he probably enlisted in about 1894, and would almost certainly have been from one of the Nilotic tribes like the Nuer, Shiluk, etc. I hope you enjoy the medal!







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Thank you for the useful information on the Sudan medal.

This is the first time i have handled one of these and i was surprised by the

general quality of the design and manufacture.

I would be interested to know

1. Who designed the medal

2. Where was the medal produced

3. Do any medal rolls still exist


Les Anderson


Edited by Les Anderson
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Hello All;


    Thanks, Peter, for your kind words. Les, yes, it's a lovely medal isn't it? In answer to your queries;

1. G.W. de Saulles, who also designed the Queen's Sudan Medal, the Cape of Good Hope General Service Medal and various other awards.

2. Good question, I presume the Royal Mint but stand to be corrected by a better-informed person!

3. Medal rolls for British Army recipients survive at The National Archives at Kew but are probably available on ancestry.com too. Medal rolls for the Egyptian Army, who received the vast majority of these awards, have not survived unfortunately, although many recipients were also entitled to the Egypt medal and these rolls are available at the new sources above. A warning, however, they are in a rather jumbled order and can prove a bit of a challenge.

    My primary interest is Egypt and Sudan medals to the Egyptian Army and I would be delighted to try and assist anyone who has examples.





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Hello again;

    Just a quick follow-up to my previous message. The Khedive's Sudan Medals were indeed struck and assembled at the Royal Mint and, according to my notes, a total of at least 20, 262 medals were despatched to Egypt in seven consecutive lots between October 1898 and February 1910. These are the figures recorded in the Royal Mint Order Books. The clasps & pins were shipped separately and the component parts were assembled in Egypt, possibly at the Citadel in Cairo. The medals were then distributed and, in some cases, named by the parent unit.

    Hope this was of some interest.





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