Can anyone help me identify this uniform from a painting in a Victorian(?) swivel brooch? The reverse is a carving in bone(?) of 2 birds. These brooches were often mourning jewellery and contained a photograph of the deceased.

I would be so grateful for any information and maybe a date.

military uniform

  • 1
    He is wearing a dolman jacket, associated with hussars until the late 19th century. It greatly resembles those of the 2nd French Empire's hussars, except the hat is all wrong.
    – SPavel
    Commented Feb 6 at 15:01
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    Re: the hat - this is properly called a pillbox forage cap. This may help searchers.
    – SPavel
    Commented Feb 6 at 15:22

1 Answer 1


This might be a match for a uniform of the Royal Horse Artillery. You can see a better painting showing many of the matching details from the National Army Museum collection online.

enter image description here

The main discrepancy I find is the lack of the red collar. That might be simply explained by the fact that the miniature artist didn't have any red paint at hand, or intended to add it at a later stage (some aspects of the miniature painting seem unfinished), or a difference in uniform style by year.

An earlier identification question shows a photo of a similar uniform.

  • The draped cord is also missing from the locket painting, and the left arm has a decoration not present in the artillery uniform (to my eye it also doesn't look like a chevron - too organic)
    – SPavel
    Commented Feb 6 at 15:38
  • The rules for wearing an Aigulette sometimes vary according to rank and circumstance. Concerning the arm, The OPs item is a miniature painting-likely on the order of 2 x 3 inches or less. Not all details can be perfectly rendered at this scale.
    – justCal
    Commented Feb 6 at 15:54
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    the miniature is clearly (to me at least) an underexposed hand-colored photograph, so the color discrepancy is probably just a lack of knowledge when colorizing it. (the cheeks are red BTW). The linked id question photos don't seem to differentiate red either. Pre-1920 or so, most film couldn't "see" red, they were initially only sensitive to blue and then later blue and green. This is why people's gums tended to look dark or black when they smiled.
    – Yorik
    Commented Feb 13 at 19:12

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