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Sir Peter Lely (1618-80)

Sir John Lawson (d. 1665) 1665-71

RCIN 405153

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As warfare became more focused on gunpowder during the seventeenth century, buff coats developed as a popular form of military attire for both Parliamentarian and Royalist cavalrymen and officers. Buff coats were lighter than full armour, yet still provided protection against blades and sometimes musket shot, particularly when combined with a breastplate as seen here. Coloured silk sashes were worn as a mark of rank and to identify members of different regiments in the confusing, smoke-filled battlefield. John Lawson wears a bright red sash indicative of his royalist persuasion by this date – although during the Civil War he had fought for the Parliamentarian navy.