Ottoman Uniforms
Ottoman Uniforms

1826 OTTOMAN CAVALRY

Silistra Cavalry Regiment (1826)

Avigdor Levy identified, that in 1826 the 'Silistra Cavalry Regiment' was formed [1], as part of the general reorganization of that year, and was raised in Silistria province (the Danube Delta), and made up of Turks, Tatars and Christians in equal proportions. In 1826, the Regiment/Brigade was organised into two battalions:

  • Lancer armed (unit made-up from Cossack recruits); and 
  • Dragoon Battalion.

In 1828, the Regiment/Brigade was organised into new ‘alays’ (regiments in the Ottoman Army). One of these, later became a regular cavalry Dragoon regiment.

  • The remaining Cossack regiment, may be the origin of the 1848 1st Cossack regiment.
  • It could also be the origin of the one regiment of line Lancer cavalry, recorded in 1828, in addition to the two- Dragoon Regiments (discussed above) [2].

In terms of the uniform of the 1826 regiment, the men were issued with:

  • Vests: This could be referring to the sleeveless over-coat-vest, which was fitted with hanging sleeves/wings that are commonly seen in Ottoman uniforms throughout this period, as well as like the 'Cossacks' costume that incorporated the very same detail.
  • Short jacket: However, reading Avigdor Levy’s description he is actually describing the standard jersey, being issued to all New Model Army soldiers. 
  • Oriental breeches.
  • Black riding boots.

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[1] Levy, Avigdor. "Formalization of Cossack Service Under Ottoman Rule." East Central European Society and War. Ed. Gunther E. Rothenberg et al. New York: Columbia University Press, 1982: 491-505.

[2] Avigdor Levy, does not identify that the 'Cossack' battalion in the original 'Silistra Cavalry Regiment' were armed with lances; however, as this was the traditional weapon of the Cossacks, it would seem likely, and that the Turkish battalion in the original 'Silistra Cavalry Regiment' were operated more as Dragoons, armed with swords and muskets only.

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