By Scott Myerly
within the theater of struggle, how very important is gown? And in peacetime, what objective does army spectacle serve? This booklet takes us backstage of the British army on the peak of its brilliance to teach us how gown and self-discipline helped to mould the army guy and tried to seduce the hearts and minds of a state whereas helping intimidate civil rioters in peacetime.
frequently ridiculed for his or her constrictive attractiveness, British military uniforms of the early 19th century still performed a strong position within the troops' functionality on crusade, in conflict, and as dramatic leisure in peacetime. Plumbing a large choice of army assets, so much tellingly the memoirs and letters of squaddies and civilians, Scott Hughes Myerly unearths how those ornate sartorial creations, combining symbols of unity and concept, shiny colour, and actual restraint, improved the managerial results of inflexible self-discipline, drill, and torturous punishments, but additionally helped foster regimental esprit de corps.
Encouraging recruitment, imposing self-discipline in the army, and boosting morale have been crucial yet no longer the one services of martial costume. Myerly additionally explores the position of the resplendent uniform and its linked gaudy trappings and customs in the course of civil peace and disorder--whether hired as public relatives via striking loose leisure, or imitated by means of rioters and rebels opposing the established order. gown, drills, parades, inspections, pomp, and order: as this richly illustrated ebook conducts us in the course of the information of the construction, layout, services, and which means of those points of the martial snapshot, it exposes the underpinnings of a mentality--and vision--that extends a long way past the army tradition into the civic and social order that we name modernity.
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Extra resources for British Military Spectacle: From the Napoleonic Wars through the Crimea
41 Command and Design And eat the Tenth tmpityingly up . . And then their noise, their frogs and feathers, makes people pause. ^^ These uniformed men were perceived to be, hterally, the possessions of those who controlled the military machine. The uniform's connotation of servility thus expresses visually the ideal of soldiers' total subservience to the will of those in command. This dimension of military dress reveals seemingly contradictory traits—for example, the livery of the red-coated slave has a negative connotation, yet it is also the badge of martial heroism.
Control over the design of military uniforms symbolized authority and power, and was thus a frequent area of conflict. Officers, who were required to report deviations from the regulation dress, often attempted to alter styles themselves. «® Relations between a corps and an inspector-general were affected by this conflict, and disputes over authority in other contexts were often both reinforced and symbolized by the desire to control designs. ®' Some inspectors continually harassed the corps they were sent to review.
While attending the queen on the royal navy ship St. " In an incident just prior to the march-past before George IV (in which each unit marched by the reviewing stand), A. C. Mercer's captain noticed that his subordinate had forgotten his "dog's ears"—false shirt collars that showed two small, upturned points of white above the black neck stock. '^ T h e crown's power of command over the army's appearance was thus significant as a source of gratification for the monarchs, and the fact that their ministers were wiUing to please them in such relatively small matters allowed the sovereigns greater leeway in designing impractical military costumes.