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The Royal Marines were formed in 1923 by amalgamation of the Royal Marine Light Infantry & The Royal Marine Artillery.

Part of the Royal Navy, as of 1820 they took precedence when serving with the army after the old 49th Foot, which was the last regiment of foot to be raised prior to the formation of the Corps of Royal Marines in 1755.

Although a number of marine regiments were raised to serve in a variety of specific wars & campaigns, they were either disbanded or continued in service as Line Infantry rather than retained as marines, thus 10 regiments of marines, the 44th & 53rd, were disbanded in 1748 & the remaining Line Infantry regiments were renumbered up to 48.

The 49th Foot amalgamated with the 66th Foot in 1881 to form the Berkshire Regiment & following other amalgamations & changes of title was in 2007 amalgamated into a new regiment, The Rifles.

With this amalgamation, the old 49th was now part of a regiment of rifles which is placed last in the Line Infantry order of precedence & The Royal Marines have been removed from that list & now take post with the Royal Navy.

Although The Duke of York and Albany's Maritime Regiment of Foot was raised from The Trained Bands of London in 1664, the Royal Marines trace direct lineage back only to 1755 & the raising of His Majesty's Marine Forces.

The cap badge of the Royal Marines.

The Lion & Crown are said to denote the "Royal" status of the Royal Marines, bestowed by King George II in 1802 upon recommendation by Admiral Lord St Vincent.

In 1827 new colours were presented by HRH The Duke of Clarence, a General of The Royal Marines (& later King William IV).

He stated that as King George IV had difficulty in selecting battle honours from so many deeds, the king had directed that the "great globe" was to be their emblem, surrounded by a laurel wreath & with the one battle honour "Gibralter" being retained, this first great battle honour representing all previous & future honours.

The laurel wreath is thought to have been bestowed as recognition of the Marines gallantry in fighting at Belle Isle n 1761.

This pattern cap badge bears the St Edwards Crown & is of gilding metal, introduced in 1954.

Edited by leigh kitchen

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The white pith helmet was taken into wear in 1912 by both the Royal Marine Light Infantry & The Royal Marine Artillery, the former wearing a spike on the helmet, the latter a ball, which continued in use with The Royal Matines after amalgmation in 1923.

The Kings Crown helmet plate of The Royal Marines & the St Edwards Crown version currently worn:

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The Victorian period valise badge, as with the badges of other units, the original fittings which pierced the flap of the pack were removed & replaced with a "flattend tube" through which a strap of the "valise equipment" ran, with a small hook to fit into a hole in the strap to stop the badge from sliding down the strap.

There is a light scratching on the reverse of this badge, a name & number, but I can't make it out:

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The King's Crown pouch badge, which was still in use in the 1960's, probably later.

two of the 3 x copper loop fittings are missing, the badge is struck in one piece, the two flat strips linking crown & scroll are reinforcing the design at those points:

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After 1850 & until 1914 the Royal Navy lacked a seaborne enemy to fight, but had interest in "Naval Brigades" of infantry & artillery for operations on land. For most of their history organised as fusiliers, the Royal Marines had a skirmishing role, which was the traditional role of light infantry.

"The Royal Marines Light Infantry" title was granted to the Royal Marine infantry element in 1855, being altered in 1862 to "The Royal Marine Light Infantry".

The buttons bore the "Marines" up until amalgamation in 1923, as did the officer's unress white belt locket until 1905.

Royal Marine Light Infantry Cap Badge, 18989 - 1923 :

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More on the Marine / Marines issue:

"There seems to be constant confusion as to whether or not there should be a terminal 's' in the titles of the Corps and its units. Perhaps a brief explanation will help. Just after the Second World War ended, in order to establish uniformity in the titles of RM units, an order was published in November 1945 stating that the words 'Royal Marines' were to be placed after the designation of a unit. Thus 40 Royal Marine Commando became 40 Commando Royal Marines and the Royal Marine Infantry Training Centre was to be known as the Infantry Training Centre Royal Marines. Between 1942 and 1945 the titles of RM Commandos were often written as 40 (Royal Marine) Commando or 40 (RM) Commando. The woven RM Commando shoulder title has always been 'ROYAL MARINES COMMANDO', because originally the title '4 'COMMANDO' was an additional straight Cash's tape sewn immediately below the existing straight shoulder title ROYAL MARINES, while above was a matching woven unit numeral. When a complete curved woven title was later produced, it was natural that it should read 'ROYAL MARINES COMMANDO'. The exception to this was '46' who had their own curved title 46 ROYAL MARINE COMMANDO, manufactured complete with numeral. In 1951 a Royal Marines Routine Order directed that in future the adjective "Royal Marines' would be used instead of 'Royal Marine'. This meant that whereas some who had been Royal Marine officers and used to live in a Royal Marine Barracks then became Royal Marines officers and lived in a Royal Marines Barracks. Many of those serving at the time found this new nomenclature difficult to accept, and in fact some never have! It is grammatically incorrect, but nevertheless a common error, to use 'RMs'."

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The brass flamed grenade badge of The Royal Marine Artillery, worn on various forms of headress including the glengarry luntil 1922:

Edited by leigh kitchen

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Illustrations of RM uniforms from two series of postcards, aquired from a RM Commando unit in Londonderry in 1979, this series was published by Goodrings & Wilson Ltd, the artist was Charles Stadden.

A Soldier Of The Duke Of York And Albany's Maritime Regiment Of Foot 1664.

Also known as The Admiral's Regiment, the first too be especially formed for sea service & recruited mainly from The Trained Bands of London.

Yellow was the favourite colour after the Lord High Admiral whose name the regiment bore.

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A Private Sentinel Of Prince George Of Denmark's Maritime Regiment Of Foot.

The Duke of York & Albany acceeded to the throne in 1685 as King James II, & the Admiral's Regiment changed its title to that of his son-in-law, discarding the yellow coats for red but with yellow facings.

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This series was published by Stamp Publicity (Worthing) Ltd in 1976, the artist agan Charles Stadden.

A Grenadier Of Villier's Marines At The Capture Of Gibralter - 24th July 1704.

When Britain and Holland declared war on France and Spain in the War of the Spanish Succession 1702-13 18 new regiments were raised, 6 of them marine regiments, named after their colonels - Colonel George Villiers raised a regiment 40 officers and 793 OR's in 1702 - later, this regiment became The 31st Foot, later the East Surrey Regiment, amalgamating into The Queen's Royal Surrey Regment, & ultimately The Princess of Wales's Regiment.

5 companies of the regiment took part in the coastal campaign against Spain in 1702, unsuccessfully attacking Cadiz in August, successfully attacking Vigo in October, destroying French and Spanish ships & capturing a a huge amount of booty worth about ?1000,000.

In January 1703, the regiment set sail for Spain again to join the fleet for operations in the Mediterranean.

In December Villiers was drowned off Malta & the Lieutenant-Colonel of the Regiment, Alexander Luttrell, became Colonel.

The regiment was renamed Luttrell's Marines & was part of the force which captured the Gibralter in July 1704 after three days of naval bombardment and a marine assault.

From The Queen's Royal Surrey Regiment site - the Villier's / Luttrell's Marines Grenadier?s pouch with hatchet and cartouch, & waist-belt with sword and socket bayonet.

All companies carried the bayonet but only the Grenadier Companies wore slings on their muskets.

Edited by leigh kitchen

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A Private Of Fox's Marines 1707.

Another of the 6 regiments of marines formed in 1702, this regiment became the 32nd Foot, later The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry prior to amalgamation nto The Light Infantry & ultimately, in 2006, The Rifles.

It too took part n the assaults on Cadiz, Vigo & Gibralter.

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An Officer Of Marines 1755.

This was the year in which The Marines were permanently established as 50 independent companies formed into 3 "divisions".

The 3rd of these "divisions" was based at Plymouth, the Main Gate of The Royal Citadel on Plymouth Hoe is seen in the background.

Marines were, commanded by their own officers, who would be under command of the Royal Navy Captain of the ship which they were aboard.

After 1755 Marines came under the Naval Discipline Act whilst at sea and it was rare to have a Marine officer above the rank of Captain (equivalent to a naval First Lieutenant) aboard ship.

When a number of ship's Marine detachments were formed nto a bland operations, then a Marine Major or Colonel would assume command

ashore.

Edited by leigh kitchen

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A Private Of The Royal Marines 1805.

Designated "Royal" in 1802, almost 3000 Royal Marines served on board ships at the Battle of Trafalgar, in exposed positions on the upper decks they suffered heavy casualties.

Royal Marines were volunteers and were less likely desert than the pressed men of the navy, they provided extra manpower for the guns n battle & small arms protection at close quarters.

They participated in boarding parties, prize crews, attacks on coastal installations & enemy ships at anchor, the defence of foraging parties & provided sentinels to guard powder rooms, magazines, the spirit & other storerooms, & ships cells.

They were also a source of unskilled heavy labour & although they could not be ordered to go a;loft they .

They were quartered between the ships officers & crew, protecting the former from the latter. _ They assisted in the general sailing and maintenance of the ship when

unskilled heavy labour was required, such as hauling ropes when the ship

was manoeuvring, turning the capstan to weigh anchor, and embarking

heavy stores.

Although they could not be ordered to go aloft & could not be punished for not doing so, many did, & Marine officers would perform watch duties

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Royal Marines At The Capture Of Oswego - 5th May 1814.

The uniform had'nt changed much come the War of 1812 & the assault on the American fortification & village of Oswego.

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An Officer Of The Royal Marine Artillery 1844.

Artillery companies of the Mari first formed in 1804, manning the mortars in bomb vessels.

The Royal Marines had a fourth "division" based at Woolwich 1805 - 1869 & dubbed "The Court Division" due to its proximity to London.

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A Private Of The Royal Marines Light Infantry, 1865.

The background shows the Main Gate of Forton Barracks, Gosport, first occupied by the "Portsmouth Division" in 1855.

The Royal Marines left the barracks in 1923 upon the amalgamation of the RMLI & the RMA.

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An Officer Of The Royal Marines Light Infantry 1880.

In the background, the old Royal Marine Barracks, now demolished.

The Barracks was buit in 1779, although Marines had served at Chatham since 1664 - "Chatham Group" was disbanded in 1950.

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The Royal Marine Artillery, by P. Smkin, published by Goodinge & Wilson Ltd.

When the Artillery Companies were formed in 1804, one company served with each Dvsion, in 1862 the Royal Marine Artillery became a seperate Division & in 1865 moved into newly built barracks at Eastney, Southsea.

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