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Officer 1720 by P H Smitherman

Officer 1720 by P H Smitherman

There are several points of interest about the dress of this officer, details of which have come from a portrait. His regiment we do not know, except that it must have been one of those with green facings. From his fusil - a light form of flintlock - we would expect him to belong to a fusilier regiment, but the green facings preclude this. He may belong to a grenadier company, in which case we would expect him to be wearing a grenadiers pouch. As we have seen, a fusil was a weapon of honour, and it may simply be that he possessed a good one - and a good fusil was a very expensive article - and wished therefore to be shown with it in his portrait. His cuffs, it will be seen, are slashed, and are kept in place by a gold chain hooked round one of the buttons on his sleeve. This is very unusual, although many coats have some means or other of keeping the large turned-up cuffs in position. It is also unusual to find officers cuffs of the facing colour of the regiment. In fact, in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries officers coats rarely bore much resemblance to those of the men, and were more like civilian clothes, and it was often with difficulty that officers could be introduced to wear uniform. After this date, however, officers dress became more uniform and after about 1750 closely resembled that of the men. The black feathers which appear in the brim of the hat are frequently referred to, but they are not often seen in pictures, except in the hats of general officers. He is wearing his sash and gorget, showing that he is on duty. The sash, it will be noticed, is worn over his shoulder. The position of the sash has varied throughout the years; by the end of the eighteenth century it was back round the waist again; by 1900 it was over the shoulder - the left shoulder this time - and now it is back round the waist. Another unusual feature of this uniform is the waistcoat, which is far more ornate than the coat, which is rather plain.
Item Code : PHS0008Officer 1720 by P H Smitherman - This Edition
PRINT One available.

Image size 14 inches x 10 inches (36cm x 25cm)none24.00

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