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  1. #1
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    The dress of Scottish mercenaries in Swedish service during the 30-years' war

    Hi, Iím about to put together a Highland outfit as it might have been worn by Scottish mercenaries serving in the Swedish army during the 1630s and 40s (apparently most of them served in their civilian apparel rather than issued uniforms). Iím thinking of looking to the Arnish Moor and Quintfall Hill finds for inspiration, but would these garbs (dating from ca. 1700) be appropriate for re-enacting the period half a century earlier? Iíve already finished a buttoned, woollen shirt based on the Arnish Moor find Ė but was that kind of garment around by the 1630s, and how common were they? Thanks, /Mikael

  2. #2
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    I once belonged to a reenactment group that portrayed such troops (MacKay's Regiment), and we wore "hodden grey" breeches and doublets with light blue Scots bonnets. The doublets were of the early 1600's style: high waisted with multiple tabs. Infantry soldiers' coats of the period (also hodden gray) were also worn. These items of clothing were considered "issued" items.

    Some guys portrayed men who had not yet received their issued clothes, and wore "civilian" highland or lowland garb, including the occasional belted plaid.

    Some patterns are here:
    https://www.reconstructinghistory.co...&e=31&w=24&r=Y
    Brian

    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." ~ Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
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    Ok thanks. I'm thinking of a basic civilian kit consisting of:

    Hodden grey jacket
    Blackish blue Quintfall Hill-style breeches
    Natural white/light grey cloth hose
    Knitted indigo-blue bonnet
    Shirt of heavy linen
    Dark brown front-laced shoes

    Does it seem reasonable for representing a Scottish civilian of the period in question?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikran View Post
    Ok thanks. I'm thinking of a basic civilian kit consisting of:

    Hodden grey jacket
    Blackish blue Quintfall Hill-style breeches
    Natural white/light grey cloth hose
    Knitted indigo-blue bonnet
    Shirt of heavy linen
    Dark brown front-laced shoes

    Does it seem reasonable for representing a Scottish civilian of the period in question?
    Sounds just right. If you're a commoner, go for the lighter "woad blue" shade of bonnet. Indigo was still an expensive imported dyestuff at that point, and thus the province of the well-off.



    Don't forget that you can also carry a plaid, ubiquitous amongst Scots, including Lowlanders....
    Brian

    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." ~ Benjamin Franklin

  5. #5
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    ...Or, have even more fun by wearing tartan breeches, like the fellow second from the left:



    This is, of course, the well-known image of Highlanders (probably from MacKay's) in Gustavus' army in the 1630s....
    Brian

    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." ~ Benjamin Franklin

  6. #6
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    You need to look at the clothes from the Dungiven Bog Burial c1600-50.
    See - http://clydesburn.blogspot.com/2009/...er-tartan.html

    There's a link to Matt's article which is interesting although I disagree with the conclusion that this proves the existence of a truly Irish District tartan.

  7. #7
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    Interesting stuff you got there about the Dungiven find. Speaking of the plaid, would this checkered pattern do?



    Besides, what is known about the measurments of 17th century plaids? I've heard that clansmen during the Jacobite Rebellion sported plaids measuring no less than six double ells - would that be valid for the 1600s as well?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikran View Post
    Interesting stuff you got there about the Dungiven find. Speaking of the plaid, would this checkered pattern do?



    Besides, what is known about the measurments of 17th century plaids? I've heard that clansmen during the Jacobite Rebellion sported plaids measuring no less than six double ells - would that be valid for the 1600s as well?
    I like that tartan for use in a early outfit. Nice, muted, natural-looking colors.
    Plaids were not of any one universal size. A wealthy clan "gentleman" might don more yardage for an impressive, voluminous appearance. Enlisted soldiers in the early Highland regiments had plaids only 3 yards - or ells - in length (which of course means 6 yards of tartan cut in half and seamed along the long edge, hence "double ells).
    A plaid not worn as a "great kilt" but carried for instance by a Lowlander as his "overcoat" and bedding, would be roughly the size of a typical blanket, or a modern "shoulder plaid"....
    Brian

    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." ~ Benjamin Franklin

  9. #9
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    You may also want to contact these folk: Clann Tartan

    I used to do pike with them some years ago. Pretty similar to Woodsheal's comments, our group was a recruiting tour, so you had all manner of highland and lowland dress . . . and matchlocks and pikes and claymores and baskethilts and so on.

    Good luck on your kit!
    Last edited by escherblacksmith; 21st January 10 at 11:54 AM.
    [B]Barnett[/B] (House, no clan) -- Motto [i]Virescit Vulnere Virtus[/i] (Courage Flourishes at a Wound)
    [B]Livingston(e)[/B] (Ancestral family allied with) -- Motto [i]Se je puis[/i] (If I can)
    [B]Anderson[/B] (married into) -- Motto [i]Stand Sure
    [/i][b]Frame[/b] Lanarkshire in the fifteenth century
    [url="http://www.xmarksthescot.com/photoplog/index.php?u=3478"]escher-Photoplog[/url]

  10. #10
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    I'm not sure if this will be too helpful but Na Fir Dileas dress in early 18th Century Jacobite clothing. Check out the following pdfs for some pics:

    http://nafirdileas.org/doclib/126281...Roy%202009.pdf
    http://nafirdileas.org/doclib/126012...ews%202009.pdf
    http://nafirdileas.org/doclib/126081...uir%202009.pdf
    http://nafirdileas.org/doclib/125131...ng%2009web.pdf

    You can also purchase some bits and pieces of historical Jacobite clothing including blue bonnets on http://nafirdileas.org/index.htm

    Hope this helps!
    It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom -- for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.

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