Performing Scottishness in England: dressing the London Scottish Volunteer Rifles - NMS Research Repository
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Book chapter

Performing Scottishness in England: dressing the London Scottish Volunteer Rifles

4 April 2016

Abstract

This chapter examines expressions of Scottish difference through the dress and activities of ‘the London Scottish’, a volunteer corps established in 1859. It addresses its connections with the Caledonian Society of London and the Highland Society of London, a revival of links between Scottish associational culture and military volunteering established in London during the late Georgian era. The evolution of the peculiar grey highland uniform worn by the London Scottish from 1859 is traced as an accommodation between competing conceptions of what London-based Scots could offer a citizen army, between an ethos of modernity, camouflage and marksmanship filtered through the elite highland sporting interests of founding-figure Lord Elcho on the one hand, and the desire of the middle-class membership to perform a more traditional Scottish military role on the other.

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