Lee Enfield cavalry .303 in Mk I magazine carbine, 1896.
Approved in 1896, the Lee-Enfield carbine was a great improvement on the Martini-Henry. It had a box magazine containing six rounds and had a smooth bolt-action, but in the Boer War (1899-1902) it was opposed by Mauser carbines, which were clip-fed rather than having the rounds loaded by hand. In action it was slower and less accurate than the Mauser. As a result of this war experience, all carbines were replaced by the Short Magazine Lee-Enfield, the universal rifle, in 1903.
This carbine was carried by Sir Edwin King as a lieutenant in the 1st Volunteer Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment (Duke of Cambridge's Own). King was associated with the Middlesex Regiment from taking his commission in 1897 to becoming lieutenant-colonel in command of the 7th Battalion in 1918. He remained honorary colonel of the 7th Battalion from 1927 until 1945.
NAM Accession Number
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National Army Museum, Study collection