n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - : the pathology of Roman soldiers in conflict

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Royal warriors and ordinary generals have been celebrated throughout history, especially by splendid statuary. But it was not until the 20th century that state and civic honour came to be accorded to the common soldier on a large scale. Such memorialising is exemplified by the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior (significantly not called the Grave of an Unknown Soldier) in Westminster Abbey in London. More prosaic is a monument to 3719 men of the Middlesex and Scottish Regiments who fell in the First World War, erected by the former London and North Western Railway outside Euston Station. Four figures stand round a plinth. Though armed, they are shown in their greatcoats and their heads are bowed in grief.

A modest South African example may be cited, a memorial to the dead of the South African Scottish and Transvaal Scottish Regiments sited on a hill in Parktown, a suburb of Johannesburg. It shows a soldier in Scottish regalia. Its history is of some interest. It was designed by a Scot who had emigrated to South Africa and served in the regiment. Another member of the regiment wrote to a sculptor in Aberdeen, persuading him to carve the monument free in honour of the Scots in the regiment who had been killed in the First World War. Scottish Rail was persuaded to transport the monument free to Southampton. It is inscribed with a suitable inscription.


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