"that same Major Cavagnari"

Public DomainCavagnari
Pierre Louis Napoleon Cavagnari, who features prominently in the second half of The Far Pavilions, was a real historical character.  Cavagnari was born in France in 1841 but became a British citizen and served in the East India Company.  He was made deputy commissioner of Peshawar in 1877, and the following year was part of a British mission to Kabul.  He and the other members of the mission were killed in Afghanistan in 1879.