Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Pathan Sepoy


One often hears British officers in the Indian Army that Pathan has more in common with Englishman than other sepoys. This is because he is an individualist. Personality has more play on the border, and the tribesmen is not bound by the complicated ritual that lays so many restrictions on the indian soldier. His life is more free. He is more direct and outspoken, not so suspicious or self-conscious. He is a gambler and sportsman and bit of an adventurer , restless by nature, and always ready to take on a new thing. He has good deal of joie de vivre. His sense of humour approximates to that of thomas Atkins, and is much more subtle than gurkha's, though he laughs at the same things. He will smoke a pipe with Dublin fusiliers and share his biscuits with the man of cardiff or kent. He is a highlander, and so, like the Gurkhas, naturally attracted by Scots. Yet behind all these superficial points of resemblance he has a code which in ultimate things cuts him off from the british soldier with as a clean line of demarcation as unbridged crevasse.

The Sepoy By Edmund Candler