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"Commanders of Portuguese Brigades in the Peninsula 1809+" Topic

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1,469 hits since 16 May 2012
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Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP16 May 2012 9:49 a.m. PST


I am building a brigade of Portuguese to go with my friends' British armies. From what I can tell, the COs of these brigades were, for the most part, British (e.g., Pack, Stubbs, Power, etc.). Were they still officers in the British Army, or were they officially transferred to Portuguese service?

Basically I want to know if they wore British or Portuguese uniforms, so I know what kind of figure I should buy for my brigade commander.

MajorB16 May 2012 11:13 a.m. PST

I think general officers in this period tended to wear what they liked rather than conforming to any uniform regulations.

Artilleryman16 May 2012 11:36 a.m. PST

Beresford liked his officers to wear the Portuguese uniform. However, in the field most tended to wear a blue frock coat following Wellington's example.

Sparker Inactive Member16 May 2012 2:40 p.m. PST

And similarly either the Lt.Colonel CO or Major 2i/c of each Bn would be in British service…

Cerdic Supporting Member of TMP17 May 2012 4:11 a.m. PST

I understood that they were on secondment to the Portuguese Army. So still officers in the British Army. I'm not sure how seniority was calculated. I expect that they would want their Portuguese service to count though!

Rod MacArthur17 May 2012 4:41 a.m. PST

I have painted up 4 Portuguese infantry brigades and. 2 Portuguese cavalry brigades. I painted the brigade commanders who were Brigadiers in Portuguese uniforms, but those who were Colonels in their British uniform (having researched which British regiments they held commissions in).


John Tyson17 May 2012 12:17 p.m. PST

It's my understanding that some commanders were British and some Portuguese. Where there was a Portuguese commander, his immediate subordinate was British. If the commander was British, his immediate subordinate was Portuguese.

God bless,

Sparker Inactive Member17 May 2012 2:55 p.m. PST

Yes that it – either the CO or the 2i/c were Brits.

grambo27 May 2012 4:03 a.m. PST

Can I just add to this interesting question and ask what headgear commanding officers of Portuguese battalions wore in the field, around 1810 to 1812? Shakos or bicornes?

Glencairn02 May 2017 2:32 a.m. PST

Hey, Rod, I#m trying to find a Portuguese Brigade Commanders you happen to have a link?? Thanks!!

Major Bloodnok02 May 2017 3:10 a.m. PST

I would suspect a cocked hat rather than the shako.

Rod MacArthur02 May 2017 12:22 p.m. PST

If his Portuguese rank was higher than his British rank then I suspect that British Officers would wear Portuguese uniform. That certainly applied to Dickson, as a Colonel of Portuguese Artillery he would outrank British Officers who were actually senior to him in British service.


seneffe02 May 2017 2:18 p.m. PST

As 'secondees' (ie salaries paid by the Portuguese Army- even if the cash originally came as a UK subsidy) rather than 'attachments' (ie salaries paid by the British Army), these British officers would definitely wear the Portuguese uniform by default. Doubtless they could get away with a plain blue frock coat in the field, but they would not be wearing British uniform while on Portuguese Army duty.

Jabba Miles03 May 2017 2:35 p.m. PST

Full dress mostly but maybe of some use.

Glencairn05 May 2017 2:45 a.m. PST

Aha! Thanks! Am converting a spare figure into De Costa, a Portuguese brigade commander..the rest seem to have been British..

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