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Can anyone please explain who wore these two arm badges............they have long and short bones.

Am I right in thinking that the badge with the short bones was/is worn above the stripes by Sergeants and Corporals?

And is the one with the longer bones for more senior NCOs?

Any advice will be appreciated. :cheers:

post-153-087816000 1287873584_thumb.jpg

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Can anyone please explain who wore these two arm badges............they have long and short bones.

Am I right in thinking that the badge with the short bones was/is worn above the stripes by Sergeants and Corporals?

And is the one with the longer bones for more senior NCOs?

Any advice will be appreciated. :cheers:

17th British Lancers - "Death or glory boys".

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Hello Robin!

Not that I know whether different levels of rank would wear different designs or not, but it could also be a possibility that there's different designs between the units (17th Lancers, 17th/21st Lancers, Queen's Royal Lancers) or uniforms (Full Dress, No.1, No.2 etc.). The 17th/21st existed for ~70 years, with plenty of time to "improve" the badge, and the 17th were around for a lot longer time than that, while the QRL might still be enjoying the design of the 17th/21st. I just browsed through "The 17th/21st Lancers 1759-1993" (RLV ffrench Blake DSO), and found a quite blurry photo of a recent (well...) trumpet major wearing a badge on the chevrons, not above. Unfortunately the photo was taken from an angle and blurry, so it wasn't possible to compare with your badges. Have you tried asking their museum?

Just my 2 pennies...

/Jonas

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Thanks Jonas.

I think the one with the small bones was worn on the stripes..............but I'm still not too sure about the one with the big bones. It's a similar, but different, design.

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Robin - I think these are variations of the badge. The one on the right - in my estimation is Victorian - the other more recent. I don't think the length of the bones has any direct ref. to the rank. Although - as always - when we make a statement, someone turns up an old orders which says otherwise !

All British Lancer Regiments are post 1815 - converted after the disaster to the Royal Scots Greys at Waterloo. I understand that there at least six Regiments in different Countries who use the Skull and Crossbones. Mervyn

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Robin - I think these are variations of the badge... I don't think the length of the bones has any direct ref. to the rank. Mervyn

I agree. Variants from two different time periods, rather than rank differencing. The later would be very cumbersome to implement - not that that rules it out in the tradition-mad cavalry - and, I think, unusual practice for a British regiment.

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the tradition-mad cavalry

Yup, we do that just to tease the rest of you! :lol:

@ Robin: Here's a link to some arm badges, there's one from the 17th/21st Lancers (but what date?) about half way down the page. I think Mervyn and Peter has a point, different era/uniform - different looking badge. I assume these badges might well be described in heraldic terms, which would open up for artistic freedom to a certain degree when ordering a new batch from a new manufacturer. And now I guess it's about time to get a good bashing from someone with a complete set of some old dusty regulations, as Mervyn predicted!

/Jonas

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Thanks to everyone who replied! :cheers:

I'm putting together a small collection of all the variants of the 17th/21st Lancers death's head.................much more affordable than the German TKs!

Thanks again.

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Cigarette card from 1939..............

I also have the two badges that started this thread, and a large (3' x 2') embroidery of the badge made by a convalescing soldier in a military hospital in 1916.

Am I missing anything (not the modern QRL stuff!!!) :rolleyes:

post-153-086339300 1287951065_thumb.jpg

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post-3707-020794900 1287955321_thumb.png

(Illustration from Cannon's "Historical Record of the Seventeenth Regiment of Light Dragoons - Lancers, London 1841.)

Am I missing anything (not the modern QRL stuff!!!) :rolleyes:

Uhmm, yes! What about the early 17th Light Dragoons helmet badge, Col. Hale's choice, the two-piece one with the skull below the bones? Probably ridiculously expensive, but certainly standing out due to the inverted design!

/Jonas

Edited by GRA

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Uhmm, yes! What about the early 17th Light Dragoons helmet badge, Col. Hale's choice, the two-piece one with the skull below the bones?

Ja! Tell me where I can get one and I'll have it! :cheeky:

post-153-071975900 1287961828_thumb.jpg

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The 1841 badge posted above is strikingly similar to the two badges that started this thread!

I agree Robin, but I haven't got any idea at all as to when this badge went into use (if at all, there could be other sources / artistic freedom involved). As you might know, Richard Cannon started writing his series of "Historical Records" in 1838, the order was dated January 1st 1836 and signed by General Lord Hill, C-in-C.

Are you by any chance turning your home into an ossuary?:lol:

/Jonas

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Robin - hang-on to that plate - having the last Honour to 'Zulu War 1879' makes it a good one. I have one on a 17th. Tschapka in the shop.

Jonas - who first used the skull and crossbones ? Was it the Polish Cavalry - for many years they were the best in Europe and twice turned back the Turks. Thinking about it, I don't think I've seen who was credited with first use.

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Jonas - who first used the skull and crossbones ? Was it the Polish Cavalry - for many years they were the best in Europe and twice turned back the Turks. Thinking about it, I don't think I've seen who was credited with first use.

I wish I knew... Around the time of Colonel Hale raising the future 17th Light Dragoons there were also Swedish hussar units with the skull and bones as their cap badge (incidentally, a certain Blücher of later Waterloo fame somehow got enlisted with the Swedish hussars while still in his early teens!). There was also a Swedish unit in the Thirty-years War which had skulls on their standards, but this was way before the use of cap badges as such. I don't know if and when the Poles may have used skulls and bones as symbols. My opinion is that it is way too powerful a symbol to be neglected as a suitable badge for a military unit, so it may well have been used very early in the history of warfare (somewhere in a dusty corner in the back of my head I seem to recall something about an Italian unit, ca. Renaissance era, with some sort of skull with or without bones as their symbol, but I'm not sure). Robin might have the answer...

/Jonas

Edited by GRA

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Robin might have the answer...

Various countries used the skull and bones badge way back, but I think the Prussians were the first to really 'popularise' it.............i.e. others (including the English) copied it from the Ruesch and Belling outfits, with whom they had come into contact during The Seven Years War.

Edited by Robin Lumsden

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