Online Collection

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Life on board a Troopship: a favourite occupation, 1899

Watercolour en grisaille by Henry Marriot Paget (1856-1936), for 'The Graphic' or 'Daily Graphic', 1899.

Life on board a crowded troopship was cramped, uncomfortable and monotonous. Programmes of physical training, sport, drill, inspections and lectures were organised with the dual purpose of maintaining the men's physical fitness and relieving boredom. Even so, they were left with a good deal of time on their hands, which they filled with such pastimes as embroidery and knitting, as represented in this view, which was probably drawn from life.

The artist, Henry Paget, was a member of the 20th Middlesex (Artists') Rifle Volunteer Corps (1875-1885), becoming a lieutenant on 1 July 1881. An expert in camouflage, he went to France in January 1916 as a captain in the Royal Engineers, and was twice mentioned in despatches (4 January 1917 and 23 December 1918) by General Sir Douglas Haig, Commander-in-Chief of the British Army in France.

NAM Accession Number

NAM. 1997-04-156-1


National Army Museum, Out of Copyright


National Army Museum, Study collection

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