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Haythorne, Sir Edmundlocked

  • H. M. Chichester
  • , revised by Alex May

Haythorne, Sir Edmund (1818–1888), army officer, was the son of John Haythorne of Hill House, Gloucester. He was educated at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, commissioned ensign in the 98th foot on 12 May 1837, and promoted lieutenant on 4 October 1839.

Under the command of Colin Campbell, later Lord Clyde, Haythorne went with the 98th to China in 1841, and was present with it in the expedition northward in 1842, including the operations on the Yangtze (Yangzi) River, the attack and capture of Chinkiang (Zhenjiang), and the operations before Nanking (Nanjing). He was Campbell's brigade major at Chushan from July 1843 until the island was given up to the Chinese authorities, and was promoted captain on 11 September 1844.

Haythorne served as Campbell's aide-de-camp in the Second Anglo-Sikh War of 1848–9, when he commanded the 3rd division of Gough's army at the passage of the Chenab, the battles of Sadri, Chilianwala, and Gujrat, and the pursuit of the Afghan contingent to the Khyber Pass. He was awarded the brevet of major on 7 June 1849. He commanded the flank of the 98th at the forcing of the Kohat Pass, under Sir Charles Napier, in 1850, and in 1851 he was again aide-de-camp to Campbell in the operations against the Mohmands on the north-west frontier. He was promoted major on 1 April 1853, lieutenant-colonel on 12 May 1854, and colonel on 28 November 1854.

In June 1855 Haythorne exchanged to the 1st Royals, went to the Crimea, and assumed command of the 1st battalion, with which he was present at the siege and fall of Sevastopol. Afterwards he was brigade major of the Highland brigade under Campbell at Balaklava.

In 1859 Haythorne was nominated chief of staff of the army forming in Hong Kong for service in the north of China, and had sole responsibility for the organization of the force until the arrival of Sir James Hope Grant in March 1860. He was mentioned in dispatches, and especially mentioned by Lord Herbert, secretary of state for war, when proposing a vote of thanks to the China troops.

Haythorne was adjutant-general in Bengal from 1860 to 1865, when he went on half pay. His old chief Lord Clyde spoke with affection of him on his deathbed: 'Good Haythorne, brave Haythorne, as modest as he is brave' (Shadwell, 2.470).

Haythorne married, in 1862, Eliza, daughter of J. Thomas of Bletsoe Castle, Bedfordshire. He became a major-general on 6 March 1868, lieutenant-general on 23 December 1876, and full general on 15 March 1879. He was made KCB in 1873, and colonel of the 37th foot in 1879. He died at his home, Silchester House, Reading, on 18 October 1888, and was buried in Reading on the 23rd.


  • Army List
  • L. Shadwell, The life of Colin Campbell, 2 vols. (1881)
  • J. Ouchterlony, The Chinese War (1844)
  • C. Hibbert, The dragon wakes: China and the West, 1793–1911 (1970)
  • D. Hurd, The arrow war: an Anglo-Chinese confusion (1967)
  • B. Farwell, Queen Victoria's little wars (1973)
  • J. Selby, The paper dragon (1968)
  • G. Bruce, Six battles for India: the Anglo-Sikh wars, 1845–6, 1848–9 (1969)
  • B. Bond, ed., Victorian military campaigns (1967)
  • The Times (20 Oct 1888)


  • NAM, letter, 6804/3–31
  • BL, Rose MSS, letter


  • wood-engraving, NPG; repro. in ILN (10 Nov 1888)

Wealth at Death

£9140 17s. 3d.: resworn double probate, Aug 1889, CGPLA Eng. & Wales (1888)

Calendars of the grants of probate … made in … HM court of probate [England and Wales]
J. Burke, A general [later edns A genealogical] and heraldic dictionary of the peerage and baronetage of the United Kingdom [later edns the British empire] (1829–)