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Private John Moyse, The 3rd (East Kent, The Buffs) Regiment of Foot, Refusing to Kow-Tow before the Tartar Mandarin Tsan-koo-lin-sin, 2nd China War, 1860

Image credit: National Army Museum

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Moyse is shown, hands tied behind back, confronting a Chinese mandarin on horseback during the Second China War (1856–1860). Both are surrounded by armed Chinese. Moyse was captured by Tartar cavalry at the Taku Forts on 12 August 1860 and after refusing to kow-tow (bow) to the Mandarin was executed. His defiant action was later immortalised by Sir Francis Hastings Doyle in his poem ‘A Private of the Buffs’. Moyse had been a sergeant, but was reduced to the ranks for insubordination prior to his death.

National Army Museum

London

Title

Private John Moyse, The 3rd (East Kent, The Buffs) Regiment of Foot, Refusing to Kow-Tow before the Tartar Mandarin Tsan-koo-lin-sin, 2nd China War, 1860

Date

c.1910

Medium

oil on canvas

Measurements

H 47.9 x W 35.5 cm

Accession number

NAM. 2001-04-329

Acquisition method

gift from the Trustees of the Buffs Regimental Museum, 2001

Work type

Painting

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National Army Museum

Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea, London, Greater London SW3 4HT England

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