Friday, January 28, 2011

Portuguese Cavalry

Portuguese Cavalry
(actually French Carabiniers by Newline Designs)

The two chaps pictured above are officers who'll be joining my Portuguese forces, their arrival means that their comrades, along with cazadores (Revell British Rifles) and John Cunningham Sepoys can be shipped next week to Mark for painting.

Command & Colours: Napoelonics has had a broadening effect on my collection as I scrabble to fill the orders of battle necessary. This is no bad thing as it does mean that a lot more colour and interest is being injected into the collection. The net effect is that I've begun to muster forces that are - quelle horreur!- neither French nor British.

I haven't gone completely barking however, there are no Dutch-Belgians yet, as I'm concentrating on the Peninsular battles. I have some Portuguese infantry from Ykreol, which I bought during a sudden rush of blood to the head, they aren't exactly pretty, but hopefully Mark will be able to dolly them up a little. I'd been scouting around for Portuguese cavalry and not having very much luck, when I mentioned the matter to Sean at Newline Designs, who recommended French Carabiners as a possible substitute. Mounted on horses with British saddlery, they look the part.

What really boiled the old noodle was the Portuguese Heavy Cavalry. I was not alone in this. However, Foy had the understanding to realise that the Portuguese were substituting for the Dutch-Belgians rather faster than I did. I did spend rather more time than I would like to admit trying to find these gentry.

I think I may have inadvertently found the wargamer equivalent of a glass hammer and a long weight.


  1. Never one to hold back with unhelpful or unneeded suggestion - HaT set 8096 (see ) are a decent source of fake Portuguese, or even 1812 Spaniards, with a few mods in the hat (small h & t) department.

    Portuguese cavalry - I wouldn't have a view on the theoretical heavy dragoons, but the normal cavalry did away with the silly helmet from 1812 and used British LD type shako - if you can get French line ch-a-ch with single-breasted jackets, that's probably pretty close, in the absence of official-issue Portuguese cavalry sets.


  2. Foy,

    Thanks for the advice - I had intended to use Hats Peninsula British Infantry as Portuguese infantry as I have a surplus of them. What do you reckon?

    I am not a huge fan of Italeri's light dragoons, who make up the majority of my British light cavalry,, so I would rather have the chaps in the helmets though some newline chaps might fit the bill.

  3. I'm not really much of an expert of the plastic figures available, beyond the pics in PSR - I have bought a few boxed sets. British stove-pipe chaps should paint up nicely, as long as the lace bars on the jacket fronts can be suppressed. This is a slightly dodgy area - largely because of Denis Dighton, and the subsequent efforts of Marcus Hinton, a tradition has grown up that Portuguese infantry wore the tapered British LI shako after 1810 or so, but according to the Lisbon Museum they just wore normal (parallel) stovepipes. Just take your pick and smile confidently.

    Cavalry - if you can get figures for the helmeted guys, you will be the envy of all the kids in your street - me, for a start.

    Interested that you are happy that Newline figures match 1/72 plastics - I know SHQ/Kennington are good, but Newline are a bit smaller - I love the figures, but they're definitely out of scale for me.


  4. You're probably right, but I rarely field them in units of under forty as our Russian friends are so fond of saying, quantity has a quality all of its own.

    I'll plough ahead with my British infantry as Pork&Beans then, Mark is a dab hand at paint conversions and it'll find a home for all those HAT British infantry.

    As for the Portuguese chaps in helments, I'm using French carabiniers on British horses. Again it's close enough for my purposes.

    But then again, I use Crimean highlanders in my Napoleonic games because I like the look of them...