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The 10th Prince of Wales’s Own Hussars - An Officer and his Charger, 1822
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The 10th Prince of Wales’s Own Hussars - An Officer and his Charger, 1822

Measurements: Overall: 72cm (28.5in) x 85cm (33in)

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Oil on canvas. An officer of the 10th Hussars with his charger in a landscape setting with a tented  encampment to the left and trees to the right. The officer’s leading a grey charger wearing the regimentally specific cowrie shell bridle and harness, leopard skin and scarlet shabraque embroidered with the Guelphic crown, GR cypher of George IV and recently awarded battle honours for the Peninsula and Waterloo campaigns. The officer wears the uniform of 1819-31 as prescribed by Dress Regulations published in 1822 - viz. blue jacket with Prussian collar, full three inches deep. Five rows of buttons, richly trimmed with dead gold gimp, chain loops, with a blue pelisse on the left shoulder of blue cloth and white fur collar. The officer’s trousers are ‘Blue-grey cossacks’, and his boots of the undress ankle type. At his waist he wears a crimson and gold barrel sash. At his left side he wears a 1796 pattern light cavalry sabre, rather than the curved Mameluke worn with full dress.  Contained in a gilt wood frame.

After valuable service in the Peninsula War (1808-14) and in the final defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in June 1815, the 10th Hussars were moved between stations in England and Ireland - its high born officers disdaining provincial society after more acceptable postings in close proximity to London and fashionable Brighton. The accession to the throne in 1820 of the regiment’s Colonel-in-Chief, the Prince of Wales, who had held the appointment since 1794 (when Beau Brummel joined), opened the way for an equally louche aristocrat to fill the vacancy in the person of Lieutenant-General Charles Vane, Lord Stewart (afterwards 3rd Marquess of Londonderry). In May 1824 Lord Londonderry visited Dublin, to inspect his regiment in Phoenix Park. On this occasion he was accompanied by Lady Londonderry, also dressed 10th Hussars uniform but with the substitution of a busby for the black shako prescribed in 1820 and depicted in the present painting - viz ‘A shako, larger in circumference at the top than at the bottom, made of blue cloth with an upright feather or plume and gold lace’.

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