Military Subjects: Organization, Strategy & Tactics


Uniforms of the Swedish Guard Infantry 1813-1814

By Robert Burnham

General: In 1813, Swedish Guard Infantry consisted of two regiments, each with two battalions of six companies each of 100 men, and one attached jager company. The two regiments were the 1st Svea Lif Garde and the 2nd Andra Lif Garde.

1st Svea Lif Garde

Coats: Dark blue coat, with lemon yellow collar, cuffs, lapels, and turnbacks. The coat was closed to the waist and thus no waistcoat was shown. The lapels were piped in white with three pairs of white lace, each with three buttons. In the upper corners of the lapel were a single button and a line of diagonal white lace. The cuffs were squared with two buttons with vertical white lace on the cuff and two buttons with lace parallel above the cuff. The collars had two strips of horizontal white lace on each. The lace and button patterns were identical to the 1807 uniform.

Breeches: Black for campaign and white in garrison. White linen overalls may have been worn in the 1813 campaign.

Overcoats: Dark blue, single-breasted with brass buttons and yellow collar. After 1813, the coat may have had a scarlet collar and lining.

Headgear: There is some confusion whether the regiment wore the traditional Kusket or a shako while on campaign. The Kusket was a black leather, round topped hat with elongated crown and rolled brim with the left side turned up. It was crowned with a black bearskin raupe from the back to the front. The base had a brass rim with a semi-circle plate with the national arms on it. If it wore a shako, it may have been of the French style or a Russian Kiwer.

Jaeger Company: The coat was identical as for the Guardsmen of the regiment, except its color was dark green. The jager company may also have worn a French style shako, instead of the Kusket, with brass chin straps, a green plume, and possibly an oval brass shako plate with the royal cypher or coat of arms.

2nd Andra Lif Garde

Guardsmen: Uniform was identical in cut as for the 1st Regiment except the color was lighter blue with scarlet facings and brass buttons. It appears that this regiment also wore the Kusket, but with a black plume, and a yellow and dark blue cockade.

Jager Company: The uniform was identical to the 1st Regiment's jagers, except with red facings and orange piping. They also appeared to have worn the Kusket.

Sources

Haythornthwaite, Philip J.: The Napoleonic Source Book; Facts-on-File, New York; 1990.

Pivka, Otto Von: Armies of the Napoleonic Era; David & Charles, London; 1979.

Rawkins, W.J.: Swedish Infantry & Artillery of the Napoleonic Wars; HMR Group, Norwich; 1978.

 

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