SECOND LIEUTENANT AYLMER TEMPLAR WALES
SOUTH AFRICAN INFANTRY
17TH JULY 1916 AGE 22
BURIED: DIVE COPSE BRITISH CEMETERY, SAILLY-LE-SEC, FRANCE
The word typed onto the form is definitely 'gahle' but I wonder if it was a mistake and the word should have been 'kahle'. I believe that the first line of this inscription is written in Zulu in which language lala-kahle means something like Goodnight or perhaps even rest in peace. However, I've no idea what 'umta-gwetu' means, if indeed this is what it's meant to say.
The second line of the inscription is the Latin motto of Maritzburg College, Aylmer Wales's school in Pietermartzburg, Natal. It comes from Cicero's De Natura Deorum 111.94 and translates as, for our altars and fires. This of course means much more than just altars and fires, it is what the Romans held most sacred, most worth defending, the equivalent of hearth and home, King and country.
Second Lieutenant Wales was 'commissioned in the field' just before his death. This meant that he was identified as officer material and promoted without returning to Britain for officer training. His father, Lieutenant Colonel ATG Wales, makes a point of mentioning this in the War Cemtery Register. Aylmer Wales was killed in Deville Wood where the South African Brigade suffered huge casualties during the Battle of the Somme.
Thanks to Stuart Sinclair I now know that the Zulu translates as 'Goodnight, sleep well'. The difference between ghale and kahle being explained by the transliteration of the Zulu words into Roman characters. Thank you!