Sepoy
   A corruption of Sip-ah, Persian for “army,” and a general term commonly, although somewhat inaccurately, used to refer to an infantryman of the lowest rank in the British-led Indian armies. Sepoys were recruited from the native Indian population by the British East India Company as early as 1667 and later by the British government in response to the French adoption of the practice. Many British army units in India initially had native officers of high rank, but they were gradually replaced by officers of European origin. The term was therefore applied to any Indian soldier below officer rank who had been trained and equipped according to European tradition. Sepoys were serious, in equal parts possibly, about religion and military professionalism. Hindu and Muslim holy men typically blessed regimental colors and sent sepoys into action with a prayer, but sepoys also sought to face the same risks in battle as their British counterparts and often resented the practice of putting British troops in the positions of greatest danger.
   See also <>; <>.
   FURTHER READING:
    Farwell, Byron. Queen Victoria ’ s Little Wars. New York: W. W. Norton, 1972;
    James, Lawrence. Raj: The Making and Unmaking of British India. New York: St. Martin’s, 1997.
   CARL CAVANAGH HODGE

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sepoy — SÉPOY s.m. (Liv.) Soldat indigen din armata colonială britanică din India. [pron. sipoi. / < engl. sepoy, cf. pers. sipahi – cavalerist]. Trimis de LauraGellner, 08.09.2005. Sursa: DN  SEPOY SÍPOI/ s. m. soldat indigen din armata colonială… …   Dicționar Român

  • sepoy — native of India in British military service, 1717, from Port. sipae, from Urdu sipahi, from Pers. sipahi soldier, horseman, from sipah army. The Sepoy Mutiny was 1857 8 …   Etymology dictionary

  • Sepoy — Se poy, n. [Per. sip[=a]h[=i], fr. sip[=a]h an army. Cf. {Spahi}.] A native of India employed as a soldier in the service of a European power, esp. of Great Britain; an Oriental soldier disciplined in the European manner. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sepoy — (mot provenant du persan سپاهی Sipâhi signifiant « soldat »), également cipaye ou cipahi, est le terme employé au sein des armées indienne et du Bangladesh pour désigner un simple soldat (sans grade) servant dans l infanterie. Dans la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sepoy — (Seapoy, beides spr. ßīpeu), eingeborner Soldat des englisch ostindischen Heeres; vgl. Spahi. Über den Sepoysaufstand 1857 s. Ostindien, S. 227 …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • sepoy — ► NOUN historical ▪ an Indian soldier serving under British or other European orders. ORIGIN Urdu and Persian, soldier …   English terms dictionary

  • sepoy — [sē′poi] n. [Port sipae < Hindi & Pers sipāhī < sipāh, army] Historical a native of India serving in a European army, esp. the British army …   English World dictionary

  • Sepoy — Sepoys Sepoy (von pers.: sipāhī = Soldat) ist die Bezeichnung für die indischen Soldaten der Britischen Ostindien Kompanie und der British Indian Army während der britischen Kolonialherrschaft in Indien. Sepoys wurden nach dem Vorbild der b …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Sepoy — A sepoy (IPAEng|ˈsipɔɪ) (from Persian سپاهی Sipâhi meaning soldier ) was a native of India, a soldier allied to a European power, usually the United Kingdom. Specifically, it was the term used in the British Indian Army, and earlier in the… …   Wikipedia

  • Sepoy — Se|poy 〈[ si:pɔı] m. 6; früher〉 Einheimischer als Soldat in den britischen Kolonialtruppen in Indien [<engl. <port. sipae, sipaio <hind., pers. sipahi; zu sipah „Armee“] * * * Sepoy   [ siːpɔɪ; englisch, von türkisch sipahi… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Sepoy — Se|poy [ zi:pɔy, engl. si:pɔi] der; s, s <aus gleichbed. engl. sepoy, dies über port. sipai, sipaio aus Hindi sipāhɪ̲ »Reitersoldat« zu pers. sipāhɪ̄ »Krieger«> einheimischer Soldat im früheren britisch ind. Heer …   Das große Fremdwörterbuch

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