Queen's Sudan Medal, awarded to an unknown Sudanese soldier 1899
Obverse, a portrait of Queen Victoria facing left with veil and sceptre
Reverse, Victory seated on a dais bearing the inscription and supported by three lilies; she holds a laurel wreath and a palm branch and sits before crossed standards
Queen's Sudan Medal, 1899
The political disintegration of the Ottoman Egyptian state during the 1880s, as it came under heavy British and French influence, permitted a rebellion in the name of the self-proclaimed Mahdi Sheikh Muhammad Ahmad ibn al-Sayyid 'Abd Allah to effect the removal of the Sudan from Egyptian control. Lengthy campaigns by British forces to recover control of the area led firstly to Gordon's famous defeat at Khartoum and ultimately, in 1890, to a full British withdrawal from the province.
In 1896, however, British and Egyptian forces combined in a campaign of reconquest, which in a series of engagements between then and 1899 eventually laid the area back under Egyptian, and therefore British, control. In 1899 Queen Victoria agreed the issue of the Queen's Sudan Medal for service in any of the first six battles of these campaigns.
This medal forms part of what Lester Watson's catalogue lists as Group 1, and its provenance is discussed in the page for that group.