Record

CodeDS/UK/4
Dates1865-1936
Person NameKipling; (Joseph) Rudyard (1865-1936); writer and poet
SurnameKipling
Forenames(Joseph) Rudyard
Epithetwriter and poet
SourceCWGC Archive, WG 237
Biographical NoteJoseph Rudyard Kipling was an English writer and poet. He was the Commission's Literary Adviser and one of its original founding members in 1917.

He was born on 30 December 1865 in Bombay, India.

Kipling's only son, John, was killed during the First World War and his death had a lasting effect on him. John was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the 2nd Bn., Irish Guards, and was killed on 27 September 1915, during the Battle of Loos.

Rudyard Kipling joined the Commission in 1917 and was appointed as the Commission's Literary Adviser. He was consulted whenever an inscription was needed or the Commission had to make a public announcement. Kipling was responsible for choosing the wording used for the Stone of Remembrance ("Their Name Liveth For Evermore", taken from Ecclesiastus 44:14) and the inscription for special memorials ("Their Glory Shall Not Be Blotted Out").

Among other inscriptions, Kipling also chose the inscription for the Basra Memorial in Iraq. Kipling issued advertisements inviting the public to provide suggestions for inscriptions on headstones. In 1919, Kipling published The Graves of the Fallen, a descriptive account of the work of the Imperial War Graves Commission's work, which he wrote at the Commission's request. In 1929, Kipling visited Egypt as a representative of the Commission. He was also present at the unveiling of the Loos Memorial in France on 4th August 1930, where his son, John, was commemorated.

Rudyard Kipling died on 18 January 1936, aged 70. For Kipling's memorial service at Westminster Abbey, the Commission arranged for a wreath made from flowers collected from the Commission's cemeteries around Loos.
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