Second Lieutenant Adrian Carton de Wiart, 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards, 1901 (c)
Copy photograph, 1901 (c).
Belgian by birth, de Wiart grew up in Egypt and was educated in England. He did not do well academically but loved sport. When the Boer War (1899-1902) broke out he left Oxford University and enlisted with Paget's Horse. When he reached South Africa he was wounded in the stomach and groin and shipped home. When recovered he left Oxford again and returned to South Africa where he served with the Imperial Light Horse. He gained a regular commission in the 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards which was stationed in India.
During World War One (1914-1918) he fought in Somaliland in 1914-1915, where he was again wounded, losing an eye and part of his ear, and being awarded the Distinguished Service Order. Transferring to the Western Front in 1915, he lost a hand and was shot in the hip and ankle. In July 1916 he was commanding a battalion of the Gloucester Regiment at La Boiselle on the Somme when he won the Victoria Cross.
NAM Accession Number
National Army Museum, London
National Army Museum, Study collection
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