Thursday, 26 March 2009

Uniform info for 1665-80

In response to Theo who requested uniform info for the new Copplestone range I thought I'd start the ball rolling with this Osprey from Rene Chartrand which is possibly the best place to start your research.
I think as an overview it is safe to say that total uniformity of battalions was an exception at this time.


Bill McHenry said...


I'll second the recommendation of Chartrand's Osprey; certainly enough information there to create a representative French army of this period and beyond into the wars of the Grand Alliance.

I recently answered a query on TMP about this specific topic and will add my thoughts, for what they are worth, on mostly online references, and a couple of printed ones:

The Vinkhuijzen collection of military uniforms from the NYPL online

Venexia's site, click on the "Download for free flags" for very good pdf files on the French and the Savoyards with standards.

More for organization and tactics, but also has excellent info on the Spanish of the period with uniforms and some flags. Dr. Pierre Picouet: The Spanish 'Tercios' 1525 – 1704, chapters 3, 5 and 7 in particular, along with the chapter on the uniforms if you're interested in Spanish.

The excellent Le Cimier uniform plates by Eugene Leliepvre, several on troops and specific regiments of the Ancien Regime. These can be viewed in miniature on the site, but really should be purchase for the excellent notes and detail on the back of the plates. Plus, suitable for framing and excellent decor for any wargames room or study.

Flags and some unit history. There are other sites, but none better on the French, gives the dates of inception on the units which is important as many regiments changed through this period and some merged. Click on France and then Ancien Regime:

And finally, in the printed realm (or at least on CD), check with On Military Matters for Pierre Foure's books on the Colours of the French Infantry: 1638 to 1715. Two volumes have been published by Editions Brokaw of a proposed 3 volume set, very reasonably priced. Also Robert Hall's excellent books on the French of the period have been put on CD, which OMM also have, more expensive but definitely worth a look. Just go to OMM and do a search on "Foure" and on "Hall, Robert" to find them. Dennis gives excellent service. Caliver in the UK have the Foure books, not sure about the Hall CD's.


Steve-the-Wargamer said...

I would say that Osprey really did miss a chance here... it's an excellent volume, and I wouldn't be without it, but the period of time that it covers cries out for a two or three volume coverage in order to provide a little depth to the various periods of the Sun Kings reign...

Nice update from Bill though - I look forward to researching dome of those links/sources...

Anonymous said...


Kind of you to reply so swiftly and so fulsomely! I have the Osprey and will look into some of the others.

The idea os the Spanish appeals to me - have a smattering of Spanish from my school days - as they have a somewhat exotic look!