Ottoman Uniforms
Ottoman Uniforms

1807 TILL 1885 PERSIAN (IRAN) QAJAR DYNASTY ARTILLERY & CAVALRY

Persian Nezam Artillery (1807 till 1848)

RIGHT - In 1812-1813, the artillerymen uniforms consisted of a dark-blue (Prussian) dolman, discribed as "similar to a British Royal Horse Artillery dolman" [1], with red collar and lapels [2], and with yellow cords. They wore wide white pants, white leather crossbelts, and  traditional tall Persian black sheepskin hat (called a TELPEK), toped with a red wool shako- ‘pom-pom’ plume.

The top-row tape decoration on the dolman collar, had many small buttons attached running alond the tape. The same button/tape is used on the cuff decoration, with a heavy wide gilt tape chevron. These may indicate the NCO rank.

Introduced in 1810-1813, were six-pounder (single trail) field guns. However, these were likely arriving as early as 1806, from the Bengal East Indian Company [3]. These were organised into two, or three-gun batteries [4]. The gun carriages were painted black [5].

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[1] Aleksandr Kibovskii and Vadim Yegorov [Translated by Mark Conrad, 1998]. The Persian Regular Army of the First Half of the 19th Century. Part 1, Tseikhgauz [Zeughaus], No. 5, 1996: 20-25. ISSN0868-801X

[2] The red lapels could be a miss-translation from the original Russian, and actually be referring to the jacket cuffs.

[3] Brass field 6-pounders produced by the Bengal East Indian Company (Fort William at Calcutta) in 1806.

[4] These guns and crews/batteries are illustrated in the '1815-1816 painting of Persian Military Review with Fath Ali Shah and Abbas Mirza'.

[5] As well, in another 1815/1816 painting of the Battle Between Persians and Russians

Camel-Mounted Artillery

In 1817, the "zamburechki" (cannoneers) were "dressed in dark-blue coats with red collars, cut in the European style with tails, wide cotton trousers and boots. On the head they had a red conical cap. Over the shoulder was throw match cord" [1]. However, illustations show the "zamburechki" (cannoneers) wearing brown (rather than the Prussian blue) dolman, with wide chest tape-stripes in gold tape.

The 'zanburak': Described in 1810, as a falconet-sized swivel gun, firing a 1/2-pound ball.

  • This was as mounted/attached to a camel's pack-saddle, and taken-off for firing.
  • The saddle was used as the gun mount on the ground (illustrated - Right).
  • A small red flag, and pole was carried to indicate the gun was in use.

The Zamburek/falconets of very small calibre, and fitted with a heavy wooden stock, were also used. These -Zamburek/Guns, were also swivel mounted, however, did not need to be taken off the camels, during firing. The animals simply rested on their knees. The saddle arch for fitting the Zamburek/falconets, and the Zamburek/Guns was bound in iron so as to withstand the recoil of firing.

RIGHT - The Shah always had some 400 zambureks, and each prince ruling a province had about 200. Illustrations show the crew consisted of four gunners (three of whom walked), and one rider (with the camel and gun). This would give a force of 50 guns, in the provincial units of zamburek. However, this illustration also show the walking gunners, all carrying a small Zamburek/gun each.

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[1] Khorasani, Maouchehr, Mosthagh (2009), Persian Firepower: Artillery. Classic Arms and Militaria, Volume XVII Issue 2, pp.21).

Congreve Rocket Batteries

Congreve Rocket Batteries were introduced by the British from India in 1810-1813 [1].

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[1] Khorasani, Maouchehr, Mosthagh (2009), Persian Firepower: Artillery. Classic Arms and Militaria, Volume XVII Issue 2, pp.21).

Persian Nezam Cavalry (1817-1840)

The regular cavalry regiment/brigade - NIZAM-ATLI [1]:

  • Four squadrons armed with lances. The lance carried a European-styled scarlet swallow-tailed flag.
  • One squadron armed with carbines.

Uniform of the lancers consists of a light-blue cloth coat with red collar and cuffs and white cross belts; and the national hat. By 1840, the lancers were using black sheepskin shabracks bound in coloured dragons-teeth. As well, the jackets are clearly cut with short tails.

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[1] Aleksandr Kibovskii and Vadim Yegorov [Translated by Mark Conrad, 1998]. The Persian Regular Army of the First Half of the 19th Century. Part 1, Tseikhgauz [Zeughaus], No. 5, 1996: 20-25. ISSN0868-801X

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