During the Victorian times, men were expected to fight for their country. Some soldiers were volunteers whilst others were forced to join the army by the government. They were expected to serve in the army for a fixed time before going back to their ordinary jobs and also could be called up to fight for their country at any time.
- Crimea War 1854 - 1856
- Chinese Opium Wars 1839-42 and 56-60
- New Zealand Maori Wars, 1844-6, 1860-1 and 1863-5
- Ashanti (Ghana) of 1873-4, 1895-96 and 1900.
- Zulu 1879
- 1st Boer War 1880 - 1881
- Egypt and Sudan 1882 - 1898
- Chinese Boxer Rebellion 1900
- 2nd Boer 1899 - 1902
Why did Britain need a lot of men to fight?
The army was needed to protect the British Empire, an empire that ranged, at times, from the American colonies in the West, Australia and New Zealand in the East, Canada and her dominions in the North and huge chunks of Africa in the South, including Egypt and Rhodesia.
The Royal Navy and the army were used to support the establishment of colonies, protect trading posts and fight against rivals such as the Dutch and Spanish.
Britain had many factories which needed sources of raw materials and markets for finished goods. It also needed more room for population expansion. The colonies was the answer to Britain's needs.
Soldiers of the Crimean War 1854
Queen Victorian inspecting a soldier