Sunday, 1 July 2007

4th Foot "The King's Own Royal Regiment"



The 4th Foot doesn't appear that often in the scenarios for "British Grenadier". In fact, to date it appears only once, in Knyphausen's division at Brandywine in September 1777 (18 figures). Originally raised in 1680, the regiment began life as "the Duchess of York and Albany's Regiment of Foot". Luckily, that mouthful was then changed to the far more elegant "His Majesty's Own Regiment of Foot" in 1715 after the accession of George I. The regiment was engaged at Culloden before finding itself at Lexington in 1775, where its light company incurred the first British casualties of the war. The regiment was then engaged at Bunker Hill but did not stay long - in 1778, after action at New York and Brandywine, it departed for the West Indies. Apparently, the last man who enlisted during the AWI did not leave the regiment until 1810, narrowly missing the regiment's capture of the White House in 1814. As an Englishman, I'm perhaps allowed a wry smile at the fact that these boys and their successors set fire to the White House......

I needed this regiment to finish off Vaughan's brigade of 1777 (in which it was joined by the 23rd, 38th and 49th Foot Regts.). I used Foundry full dress figures which were sitting around in my "in tray". I wanted a unit which looked like it was in the process of firing a full volley. The first rank are in the "cock your firelock" poise from the 1764 Manual Exercise - just prior to aiming and then firing. These Foundry sculpts are tricky figures to paint as the faces are largely obscured by the muskets; the second rank are much easier. That notwithstanding, it is quite a neat pose. I also think that this "full dress" look is ok for a unit that had left America by 1778. Only one figure in the regiment has a backpack, namely the corporal. No one knows for certain what motifs (if any) appeared on the flaps of any British backpack, so I used a bit of artist's licence to impose a lion, taken from the corner motifs on the regimental colour. As a royal regiment, the musicians' lace is yellow and blue over a red faced blue coat. Also, this being the most senior regiment of line troops in my collection, I gave all the officers powdered hair and gloves and generally tried to smarten up the battalion's appearance.

18 figures. Painted May/June 2007. Flags by GMB.

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3 comments:

Allan (AJ) Wright said...

Outstanding work on the packs.

legatushedlius said...

Lions on the backpacks is just showing off, Giles! I can even see the crown! Time to get some new eyes..

Sofabeast said...

The 4th foots light company wore 'cocked hats', with white scalloped lace. Otherwise attired as flank men.