Mounted Officer and Men c1870

This is the right hand side of the painting by Norie. See Officers with Colours c1870. When on parade there were three officers mounted per battalion, the CO, 2nd in command and the adjutant. The shabraque and harness are not very elaborate compared with 20th century horse furniture. The officer wears trousers or overalls here instead of the boots and breeches worn towards the end of the century and up to 1936.

The officer on the left of the picture is in frock coat and forage cap. See Officer in Frockcoat c1870. He wears his crimson sash over his left shoulder and his sword is slung from a white leather waistbelt. His trousers are Oxford Mixture instead of blue. This painting gives us a good idea of how different the trousers were from the colour we are used to seeing the Guards wear. It is not a matter of the watercolour fading with age because the blue of the frockcoat shows up against the trousers.

The men parading in the background also show blue facings contrasting with dull coloured trousers. The diagonal white line across their chests is their ammunition pouchbelt which means that this painting is pre 1871 when the new equipment was introduced.

Uniforms | Regimental Details

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by Stephen Luscombe