Officers c1863


Orlando Norie painted this watercolour of a Black Watch camp scene c1863. The four officers in the foreground are wearing four different orders of dress. The most senior officer, on the right has extra gold lace around his cuffs and the edges of his Inverness flaps. He is in dress uniform with the sporan showing eight gold tassels, this is almost certainly wrong as earlier and later versions show only six. He has medals for the Crimea and the Indian Mutiny. His blue cuffs have the slash flaps but they are pale. It is as if the artist was not sure whether they should be blue or red. But the other officer in the feather bonnet has (just about) blue flaps. The 1861 and 1864 Dress Regulations mention slash flaps of the regimental facings colour, ie blue. These two officers show different ways of wearing the plaid, hanging from the left shoulder, pinned by a plaid brooch, or as a scarf, across the chest, but also hanging from a brooch on the left shoulder. The scarf style was only worn with trews by officers, but for pipers and bandsmen it was worn like this with the kilt.

The officer with his back to us is in an undress shell jacket. This has a blue collar and pointed cuffs edged in white piping. The front edge of the jacket is also piped white and has buttons close together from neck to waist. The sword belt can be seen from the back view showing that one sling comes from midway up the back. His peaked forage cap looks rather like a French kepi in this painting, and there is no sign of the tartan cap-band. The other officer in undress leans on the fence and is wearing a blue frockcoat. This is double-breasted with gilt buttons and has a 3-buttoned slash flap on the cuff. Photos show this flap as dark like the material of the coat but Norie is unsure and shows it as pale. There is a black leather waist-belt for his sword, and he wears the full crimson sash on his left shoulder.


Regimental Details | Uniforms




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by Stephen Luscombe