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Hermann, I am fairly certain this is a diplomatic variant of the Court Uniform.  My guess is a member of the Consular Service.  As to medals, I really don't know, but they aren't official British decorations.  I wonder if they are not temperance medals?


(Source of image: Wikipedia)

If you do a search, I also believe there are a couple threads about this type uniform already on GMIC.

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Medal on the left as looking at the picture is the Civilian Order of the Bath and the last one is India Mutiny with one of a possible 5 bars......

  • Delhi
30 May - 14 September 1857. Awarded to troops participating in the recapture of Delhi.
  • Defence of Lucknow
29 June - 22 November 1857. Awarded to original defenders and to the relief force commanded by Sir Henry Havelock - Particularly rare and sought after by collectors. This medal was also awarded to the principal, masters and schoolboys from La Martinière College in Lucknow[6]
  • Relief of Lucknow
November 1857. Awarded to the relief force under the command of Sir Colin Campbell.
  • Lucknow
November 1857 - March 1858. Awarded to troops under command of Sir Colin Campbell who were engaged in final operations leading to the surrender of Lucknow and the clearing of the surrounding areas.
  • Central India
January - June 1858. Awarded to all those who served under Major-General Sir Hugh Rose in actions against Jhansi, Kalpi, and Gwalior. Also awarded to those who served with Major-General Roberts in the Rajputana Field Force and Major-General Whitlock of the Madras Column, between January and June 1858.


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1 hour ago, IrishGunner said:

Hermann, I am fairly certain this is a diplomatic variant of the Court Uniform

I agree with IrishGunner. Compare your photo with the coatee in the centre of the back row of the photo below. My notes, which must have been taken from the auction site from which I downloaded the image, say,



Sold at Spinks in 2000. The Rt Hon Sir Ernest Cassel, GCB, GCMG: First Class Full Dress Civil Uniform, First Class Levee Dress Civil Uniform and Cloak; The Rt Hon Sir Felix Cassel, Bart, KC, sometime Judge Advocate General(nephew) : Second Class Full Dress Civil Uniform, white breeches and court shoes with gilt buckles; First Class Levee Dress coatee and trousers; sword with gilt hilt, gold lace sword-knot with bullion tassel complete with chamois leather slip and black oil-skin outer cover; bicorne hat; double breasted great coat, Wellington boots.

Edit: If you are interested, I now discover that the group was sold as lot 44 for £2,070 in Spink's Sale 1264 on 30 November 2000. The details can be found on Christie's website.



I have just done a Google image search on the photo I uploaded and discover that it has already appeared in a GMIC thread! This may be one of the other discussions about diplomatic dress that IrishGunner mentioned,


As IG also said, there is at least one other, which I contributed to and which might be worth your while searching for.

Edited by Trooper_D
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4 minutes ago, peter monahan said:

I can see that, but the bars were quite common on early Victorian medals, as it wasn't yet the custom to sew them to the uniform.

The interesting thing is that they are three separate mounting clasps instead of 3 together......  The most that I have ever seen is a mounting clasp that would hold 6 medals.......



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  • 2 weeks later...

Actually, Mike, the examples I'm thinking of - mostly Crimean and Mutiny groups, are all individual clasps/brooches.  In fact, I have a couple: ribbon feed through a buckle which has two loops on the back, so it still has to be stitched to the garment but is easy to add or remove without messing with the ribbon.  

Then one sees the ribbons [with the medals on] sewn directly to the uniforms - I'm thinking this became common in the 1870s-80s, but that's just an impression, and finally the 'bar', either pinned through the tunic or through loops on the tuic, which we're familiar with today.  Medals, as opposed to orders and awards,  only became really common for most soldiers and sailors after the issue of the MGS and NGS in the 1840s and the campaign medals of the 1850s on, so attachment was a relatively new puzzle to solve in the period this picture repersents

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Here is a great example of medals being individually worn on broach style clasp fittings. The man in the picture is Captain George Fiott Day VC. He won his Victoria Cross for actions in 1855 during the Crimean War.

Interestingly, he was the Great Uncle to Wing Commander Harry 'Wings' Day who was one of those who escaped in the Great Escape. He was recaptured and sent to Saschenhausen concentration camp from which he escaped again. He eventually was being held hostage in Tyrol with other important prisoners for Concentration camps when he stole a car and escaped to allied lines to inform them of the Hostage Situation.


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