Private, Grenadier Company 1815


The bearskin cap of the grenadier companies was only worn on special occasions but this soldier is in marching order with his haversack and water-bottle slung over his shoulder and his knapsack ready beside him. The fact that he is wearing grey overalls also suggests that he is not on a special parade or inspection. Full dress would normally mean white breeches and white gaiters but this drawing was probably made in the aftermath of Waterloo in which case exceptions would have been commonplace.

The bearskin looks very much like that worn by the French Imperial Guard with the diagonal white cord festoon and tassels. The white plume was the mark of the grenadier and was retained on the bearskin of the First Guards when they became the Grenadier Guards. At this stage the Scots Guards only wore the bearskin in the grenadier companies. It was not until 1831 that the whole regiment wore it. There is supposed to be a peak but this is not apparent here. The brass plate at the front bears the Royal arms.

An earlier example of an officer's bearskin can be seen in the portrait of Captain Cosmo Gordon.


Uniforms | Regimental Details




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by Stephen Luscombe