Corporal 1815

The artist Carle Vernet made many studies of the British soldiers in Paris, after Waterloo. This one of a corporal of the Scots Guards is based on observation but is wrong in a couple of areas. The white strap that goes around his chest and knapsack may have been based on the short strap that was fastened across the front to prevent his pack straps from falling off the shoulder. The other mistake is the bunching of the button loops on the blue cuff. There should be three evenly spaced loops instead of what looks like two bunches of three.

The rest of the uniform looks like that of a grenadier company soldier, if the fringed shoulder wings are correct. Rank chevrons were introduced in 1803 and were white on blue cloth backing for corporals, gold lace for sergeants and above. On campaign the men of this company would have worn the shako with a white plume, saving the fur cap for special occasions. Battalion companies would have worn a shako with a white over red plume and light companies a green plume.

The ammunition pouch can be seen below the knapsack along with his bayonet scabbard. The knapsack itself has the rolled greatcoat on top and a mess tin strapped to the outside. The overalls are plain blue-grey.

Uniforms | Regimental Details


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by Stephen Luscombe