Saturday, August 13, 2011

Northern Levies

Although the Colonel of this regiment was Hugh, 7th Lord Lovat, the main driving force for the Covenant was Sir James Fraser of Brea, who was the Laird’s tutor and regiments Lieutenant Colonel.  In 1644, the clan could see that action was imminent and set to building defenses around it’s lands, aided no doubt, by the experience of Major Hugh Fraser, who had served with the Swedish Army.  The regiment formed with Argyll’s army that winter but did not travel south, missing Inverlochy, as it served as the primary garrison around Inverness.
The Frasers fought at Auldearn, were the regiment lost 87 married men (unmarried men were of no consequence as they had no wives to petition the laird!).  After the battle Clan Fraser retreated into their defenses, whilst Montrose (with the help of Seaforth) scoured their lands.  With Middleton’s arrival in the north in 1646, Fraser’s troops left their defenses and took their revenge on Mackenzies lands.  As the highlands returned to the rhythm of petty inter-clan warfare in 1646/47 eventually some of the Frasers gains were lost, most likely as the Mackenzies were pardoned and the heavy hand of government support (and jurisdiction) was lifted from the Fraser’s.

Given that this isn't the "deep" highlands, I've chosen to depict them without kilts, as they probably had more in common with the common population of Scotland rather than the "wild" clans.  However, given that they were probably levied rapidly, its unlikely they would have been given more than a bunnet, and so would be wearing their own clothes.  Thus I've pained them with some grey, but also a variety of natural tones.  The officers are a bit more snappily attired, reflecting their landed qualifications - continental fashions having reached even these parts!  The standard colour's (red and white) reflect those of  regular regiments raised locally to Nairn, the colonels standard includes the stag's head crest of the Fraser's.

Again the photo's are not the best, it was over 100 outside and the figures were almost to hot to handle!  will do a full army shoot in the autumn.  Next regiment on the list is the earl of Findlater's, but don't think it'll be done till late October.  Mind you I've now passed the half-way mark on my contribution!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Northern Levies - Complete

Been busy painting these guys over the last month - will do the bases in the next week and get some better photos plus a write up of the unit and the rationale behind the flags.

Not the best photos - flash or no flash that is the question....