Explore both volumes of the Bond of Sacrifice and discover your British Army ancestor. The Bond of Sacrifice is a biographical record of officers, who died during the First World War from the beginning of the war in 1914 until 1916. The vast majority of the names recorded are those who died before 1916. View excellent quality portrait photos, read full biographies of the officers including details about their family, names of spouses and children, education and a detailed history of the individual’s military career.

Each record includes an image of the page on which your ancestor’s name is found and an individual transcript. The amount of detail in each entry does vary, but most will include the following information:

Transcript

  • Name
  • Regiment
  • Birth year
  • Death year
  • Source

Image

Photograph

Biography includes:

  • Parents’ names
  • Birth place
  • Education
  • Spouse’s name
  • Children’s name(s)
  • Details about military career
  • Awards
  • Death place
  • Additional comments from commanding officer

Use the arrows to the left or right of the images to browse more biographies of Officers.

Acknowledgement

Images reproduced by courtesy of the Trustees of the Honourable Artillery Company, London, England.

Discover more about these records

The officer biographies from both volumes of the Bond of Sacrifice have been digitised and indexed on Findmypast. Field Marshall John French, 1st Earl of Ypres penned the introduction to the first volume. He wrote, ‘Its pages teem with deeds of gallantry and devoted self-sacrifice in the cause of King and Country.’ The military editor was Colonel L A Clutterbuck in association with Colonel W T Dooner and naval editor Commander the Honourable C A Denison.

Volume 1 covers the first four months of the war and closes in December 1914. Volume 2 covers the first six months of 1915, and also includes biographies of seven officers, who were killed in 1916.

The original intention was to create more volumes, each covering six months of the war and including the names of all the officers, who died from causes directly related to active service. However, due in no small part to the huge number of officer casualties, and to the publishers running out of money, the series was never completed.

The names are listed in alphabetical order. Most biographies include a photo portrait of each officer and a short biography. The biographies usually consist of parents’ names, educational background, achievements and, when present, spouse’s name and children’s names. The entries also detail the officer’s military career and often include a description about how the officer lost his life during service. Many of the entries have comments from commanding officers about the bravery and gallantry of the officer under their command. Here are a few examples of comments: