Original British Officer's Telescope by Dollond named to Maj. R.C.A.B Bewicke-Copley of the K.R.R.C.

Item Description

Original Item: One of a Kind. Nobody likes defeat, but that is what the British suffered at the hands of the Boers at the famous Battle of SPION KOP in 1900. The British were under the field command of MAJOR ROBERT C.A.B. BEWICKE-COPLEY of 3rd Battalion of the KING'S ROYAL RIFLE CORP.

Born with only the surname of BEWICKE in 1855, he was schooled at RUGBY (Remember "John Brown's Schooldays"?), then after attending OXFORD he joined the K.R.R.C. in 1887. As a Captain he had taken part in the NILE CAMPAIGN of 1884/85. He then married an heiress named Copley in 1886 and took the name "BEWICKE-COPLEY" in 1892, a very wise move for an ambitious family. His son was awarded by Act of Parliament the old family title of LORD CROMWELL of the Copley family, which was granted by KING EDWARD III in July of 1923, thus becoming the 5th LORD CROMWELL. (No Relation with Thomas Cromwell from King Henry the VIII's time or with OLIVER CROMWELL of English Civil War fame).

He was promoted Major in 1894 and served on the North West Frontier and Chitral in India and was mentioned in dispatches. He took part in the South African BOER WAR and was the field Commander at the famousBATTLE OF SPION KOP, which the British LOST. He served also at COLENSO. He became a BRIGADIER GENERAL in 1916, having retired from active service in 1912. He died in 1923.

This fine three draw telescope measures 33" overall when fully extended and 10 1/2" when closed. It is fitted with a movable sun shade to the front and the body is covered in brown leather to match the Officer's Sam Browne equipment. Under the sun shade the brass barrel is engraved in elegant script:-

Maj. R.C.A.B. Bewicke-Copley
3rd. Bn. K.R.R.C.

The telescope is in excellent condition, still functional with clear optics. The largest diameter draw of the telescope can be a bit stiff at times. It is maker marked on the side of the smallest draw by the eyepiece:

No 14197

The only real shortcoming is that the leather strap and eyepiece cover are missing: only the front lens cover remains. Makes a great display piece, as it had been in a British Collection for more than 50 years and only came to sale in 2017 when I.M.A. secured some 30 quality British historical telescopes from 1760 to 1918.

Ready to display and add to any collection.
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