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"Early ECW regiments" Topic

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Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 5:26 a.m. PST

I plan to build a couple of early war regiments for Edgehill. I assume that many of the soldiers must have still have wearing civilian clothing; but what would the predominant clothing colours amongst the soldiers (as opposed to the officers) have been at the time? Are we talking browns, greys and blacks or might brighter colours have been common?

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 5:33 a.m. PST

Red, then some shade of blue were the most frequently occurring colors for both sides. Even then it could have simply been just the coats.

Source: link

Useful starting point at any rate.

GurKhan01 Jun 2017 6:12 a.m. PST

At Edgehill, most of the Parliamentary regiments had already received their uniform coats. But there is little or no evidence for Royalist clothing issue until later on, so "it is highly likely that large part of the Royalist Foot at Edgehill served in their civilian clothing" so suggests link.

When Essex's army received new clothing in 1643, a pamphlet says something like "now country grey is become parliament grey" implying that grey is characteristic of country civilian clothing. Cromwell's "plain, russet-coated Captain" is presumably characteristic of the lower ranks of the gentry. In the 16th century, blue coats had been characteristic of serving-men and apprentices link but I don't know if that was still true.

Supercilius Maximus Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 6:23 a.m. PST

BRB – I think browns and greys would be fine, but not blacks; it was quite a difficult (and expensive) dye to produce, and often didn't last very long in cheaper clothing anyway – hence it was reserved for the clergy and "people of quality". As GurKhan says, grey (which was usually undyed cloth) was most common, but could cover a multitude of sins ranging from anything from a light charcoal, to a pale tan colour.

Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 6:50 a.m. PST

Thanks chaps (especially Duncan)- it was the Royalists that I particularly had in mind. I recently bought a selection of grey paints- it looks like I'll have plenty of opportunity to use them! I'll mix in some browns coats, too, and some brown paint in with some of the grey. Also a smattering of other colours.

Big Red Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 8:00 a.m. PST


What figures are you planning to use for your ECW project?


Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 8:09 a.m. PST

Mostly Bicornes BR- some Renegades and Redoubts. I always seem to go for the larger ranges…

Deuce03 Inactive Member01 Jun 2017 9:13 a.m. PST

A few Royalist regiments are believed to have been outfitted before Edgehill, although which regiments – and in which colours – remains unknown. The King's Life Guard are the only ones confirmed, and they might well have been issued with buff coats rather than coloured coats.

It is probable that most soldiers wore civilian clothing. They may have worn red sashes to help them tell friend from foe, though.

I don't see the harm in including a few red or blue coats among the masses. Brown and grey might have been common civilian colours for cost reasons, but, just as today, people who could afford it would have worn coloured clothes. Technically speaking, there were sumptuary laws on the books at this point, but they were not being enforced, so people would wear whatever they liked in civilian life and one has to assume this would be reflected on the battlefield.

Big Red Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 9:18 a.m. PST

Those are nice figures.

I started earlier (20 years ago) using Old Glory and have a cast of thousands, well OK hundreds actually, eagerly awaiting To the Big Shot or To the Longest Pike or By the Grid Divided.

Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 9:36 a.m. PST

:-) "For King and Parliament"

advocate Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 10:00 a.m. PST

Big Red's last suggestion deserves to be at least the subtitle!

Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 11:17 a.m. PST

They are very good. I liked the second one. :-)

Timmo uk01 Jun 2017 11:43 a.m. PST

It's pretty much been said above. Really it's a case of thinking 'wool' and the natural tones that come from sheep and the mixing or not of different coloured wool when it is spun and made into cloth. So anything from undyed sort of yellowish off white through all sorts of warm greys and browns.

As Supercilius notes not black. It was an expensive colour to dye I reserve it for just a few officers.

However, and this a big however, I would suggest that you don't paint your armies for Edgehill. In many ways it was a one-off unique ECW battle for several reasons. If you want to do the King and Essex than I would look at the armies as they are around the time of First Newbury onwards. If you play Edgehill with Royalists that have uniform coats does it really matter? One of the things that is so nice about the period is the different coloured coats. You'll still be painting loads of grey and brown breeches and endless buff coats but I'd bring some colour to the table top. There is a surprising amount of information available on the main Oxford Army.

Having read your OP again I note that you are only considering doing a couple of regiments as Edgehill troops. If you go for predominantly greys and undyed wool you can use them for all sorts of units.

I keep all my command groups on separate vignette style bases so I get pike blocks that are all pikemen, as I think this looks good, with two flanks of musket. However, the main advantage is that I can change the ID of my units for each game.

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 1:12 p.m. PST

I believe most militia, except the London rained Bands, were raised by company rather than regiment. This might give rise to a mixture of uniforms with civilian clothing.

Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP01 Jun 2017 3:10 p.m. PST

No I'm not planning to paint whole armies for Edgehill, but I will need some early war units for various scenarios.

I am thinking that I could paint two or three regiments, each mostly in civilian clothing (with some uniforms) and with a 50/50 pike/shot ratio. These could then do double service for Edgehill or as Hopton's Cornishmen (with different command stands).

Foresightpaint Inactive Member06 Jun 2017 5:52 a.m. PST

I have 3 types of regiment

The first is an array of drab colours to suggest no uniform



Second is the 'hint of' uniform – imagine a Brookes regt in all purple!



Third is the uniform uniform.



Realistic? Well at least Ive covered all options.

Personal logo BigRedBat Sponsoring Member of TMP06 Jun 2017 8:51 a.m. PST

I'm liking those a lot! Even you uniform regiment isn't very uniform. :-) I struggle with achieving this sort of thing as my desire to organise is very strong… but I'm working on it.

Supercilius Maximus Supporting Member of TMP07 Jun 2017 4:00 a.m. PST

Two things to keep in mind:-

1) apart from the Royalist Oxford army in 1643-44, and the majority of the Scots Covenanters, very (very!) few units were issued coat AND breeches of the same colour and thus folk tended to wear their own trousers; and

2) as the war goes on, in most armies regiments become too small to remain distinct battlefield units and hence you get "battalia" of "mixed colours".

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