...met while at the same time an certain natural authority came to the fore, a trait that would
in effect leave him in command of a reconnaissance patrol soon after.

On 1 June, the Prince set out on patrol with a group of six mounted volunteers under the
assumed command of Lieutenant Carey of the 98th Foot. The patrol was to be reinforced by
additional mounted Basutos but when the former failed to appear at the appointed
rendezvous site it proceeded on without them.  The patrol moved on and took rest at a
deserted Zulu kraal in the early afternoon. Unbeknown to the members of the patrol a party
of Zulus had been quietly approaching their resting place and as the patrol mounted to begin
their return trip to camp the Zulus burst out of the long grass and scattered the surprised
The Prince attempted to mount his spooked horse but fell when
the saddle's holster strap to which he holding gave way. Pursued
by some dozen Zulus he gained his feet and turned to face the
onrushing warriors. Defending himself with his revolver an
opponent's assigai he fought "like a lion at bay" until he fell
under the weight of his enemies numbers.

Thus the last aspirations of the Bonapartist party to the imperial
throne of France ended in a donga near the Itshotshosi River in
Above: Napoleon Eugene
Louis Joseph Bonaparte,
The Prince Imperial of

Mounted Woodburytype
from The South African
Campaign of 1879
London Stereoscopic
Company, London,

c. 1880
Today the Prince rests in St Michael's Abbey Church,
Farnborough while his effigy - dressed in the patrol uniform of
the Royal Artillery - resides at Saint Mary's Catholic Church,
Chislehurst  - a strange fate for the descendant and namesake of
one of Britain's greatest enemies.

The following items reflect the Prince's brief and completely
unofficial career in the British Army.
Above: Napoleon
Eugene Louis
Principe Imperial of

The last portrait
taken in Natal on the
eve of his leaving for
the war.

London Stereoscopic
Company, London,
c. 1879
A page from the Duke of Cambridge's
guest or calling book  bearing the
signature of the Prince Imperial.

February 1879
An oval die-cut photograph of the
Prince Imperial wearing his cadets
uniform from the Royal Military
Academy, Woolwich.

c. 1875
Long after the Prince's death
he still found a place in the
public imagination. This is
reflected even in popular

Sheet Music
"The Prince Imperial Gallop
Charles Coote
De Luxe Music Company
Broadway & 28th Street
New York, New York
United States

c. 1910