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Katherine Elliott

MA work

Title of Dissertation: Leather, Linen and Layering in Bloodshed and Warfare: An investigation into the development of English military clothing through the study of production, supply and materials, 1645–1708


This dissertation looks at how the development of English military clothing supply systems led to a uniformed and professional fighting force between 1645 and 1708. This project sets up and identifies certain physical and psychological needs that a soldier’s clothing of this period had to satisfy and investigates the developments in military clothing supply in relation to the more successful fulfilment of these needs. The subsequent discussion of the materiality of particular items of soldiers’ and officers’ clothing – the linen undershirt, buff coat and woollen coat – illustrates the role that clothing played in a soldier’s life and the manner in which these physical and psychological needs were satisfied.


Finally notions of uniform and customisation are considered in order to discuss how the development of more regulated systems of supply and clothing, with layers of meaning that were subsequently layered onto the body, led to a professional force with a strong identity as a whole and in its individual parts, in turn leading to a more disciplined and successful military force in England. This project has also provided me with a wealth of opportunities to develop independent skills in curating that I hope to pursue in my future career.


Info

  • MA Degree

    School

    School of Humanities

    Programme

    MA History of Design, 2012

  • Title of Dissertation: Leather, Linen and Layering in Bloodshed and Warfare: An investigation into the development of English military clothing through the study of production, supply and materials, 1645–1708


    This dissertation looks at how the development of English military clothing supply systems led to a uniformed and professional fighting force between 1645 and 1708. This project sets up and identifies certain physical and psychological needs that a soldier’s clothing of this period had to satisfy and investigates the developments in military clothing supply in relation to the more successful fulfilment of these needs. The subsequent discussion of the materiality of particular items of soldiers’ and officers’ clothing – the linen undershirt, buff coat and woollen coat – illustrates the role that clothing played in a soldier’s life and the manner in which these physical and psychological needs were satisfied.


    Finally notions of uniform and customisation are considered in order to discuss how the development of more regulated systems of supply and clothing, with layers of meaning that were subsequently layered onto the body, led to a professional force with a strong identity as a whole and in its individual parts, in turn leading to a more disciplined and successful military force in England. This project has also provided me with a wealth of opportunities to develop independent skills in curating that I hope to pursue in my future career.


  • Degrees

  • BA (Hons), Philosophy, University of Nottingham, 2010
  • Experience

  • Volunteer for the 1600–1800 Europe Galleries Project, Victoria and Albert Museum, 2012 to present; Saturday Retrieval Team, Victoria and Albert Museum, 2011–12