In a message dated 12/2/2009 5:55:19 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
Can any member either enlighten me themselves, or direct me to an
appropriate source, about the subject of buying commissions and the
higher ranks within the East India Company Army?
Unlike the British Army in which the purchase system for commissions and
rank was institutionalized at the time the HEIC Army existed, commissions and
ranks were not purchased in the HEIC Army. Commissions were awarded
without cost by a patronage system with the Directors making the actual
nomination. Rank advancement was by seniority. There was an informal system
within the HEIC Army whereby the lower rank officers provided a monetary
incentive for a senior officer to retire so that all junior officers could move
up a step, but it was not an actual purchase of rank.
I hope this helps.