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Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts

(1832-1914), Field Marshal

Sitter in 81 portraits
Roberts was born in Cawnpore, India and served much of his military career there. He rose to Major-General during the Afghan war, 1878-80, and Commander-in-Chief in India, 1885-93. He enjoyed enormous popularity at home, which was much enhanced by his decisive command in the Second Boer War, 1900. He returned to England on being appointed Commander-in-Chief of the British army, 1900-04, but found himself in disagreement with government defence policy. He spent his remaining years warning against the German threat and arguing the case for national service. Roberts died of pneumonia in France while visiting Indian troops fighting the First World War. He was given a state funeral after lying in state at Westminster Hall (only one of two non royal family members to do so in the 20th century, the other being Sir Winston Churchill) and was buried in St Paul's Cathedral.

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