Sergeant, Irish Guards, 1901
The Irish Guards are part of the Guards Division
A Regiment of the Guards Division. The Irish Guards were raised in 1901 as a compliment to Ireland in recognition of the outstanding performance of Irishmen in South Africa, and in their comparatively short life they have fought in three wars. Their uniform follows the lines of the rest of the brigade. but their buttons are grouped in fours. When the South African war broke out in 1899 the army was faced with a type of expedition which it had not had to undertake since 1854. The war may be regarded as the first of the modem era. Previously, except in India, fighting had resembled manoeuvres on the parade ground. South Africa bore no resemblance to a parade ground at all. This plate shows a sergeant of the Mounted Infantry Company provided by the Irish Guards for South Africa and is based on a photograph of the company shortly before embarkation. It is odd they should have imagined that they would fight in such a dress, if they did. This must have been the dress in which they had done their training in England – the usual training dress of the Guards – and the plate does emphasise the difference between this and previous coats. The Brodrick hat, named after the War Minister of the day, had a very short life in the army. It was introduced in 1901 but was later modified by the introduction of a peak to become the modern forage cap.
|Dimensions||24 × 37.5 cm|