Falling in on Parade

The men have taken up their positions in ranks. They are looking right to make sure that they line up correctly based on the right marker who is nearest the sergeant. He is checking that they form straight lines and shouting at anyone who is out of place. The sergeant is dressed similarly to the men except that he has black gloves. The men do not fix bayonets (they call them swords) on parade like other infantry regiments. This custom dates back to the first rifles issued to soldiers. These did not take a bayonet like the muskets, but a sword was carried by the riflemen. Behind the men who are getting fell in, is a squad moving in double time. It should be noted that the artist, Ernest Ibbotson has painted the colour of the jackets as green and the trousers as black. This agrees with PW Reynolds illustration Officers and Rifleman 1904.

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by Stephen Luscombe