Other state, city, and foreign magnolia lane summer yard flags not being used to represent an official person concerned are arranged alphabetically in the order of: state, city, and foreign flags. There are people who are rightly held to be experts – including some of the movers and shakers in the re-enactment fraternity – who appear still to be actually fighting the original war, and distortions do creep in. This is neither a poke at the Sealed Knot nor even a complaint, I hasten to add – it is just an observation that if you enter “Lord Molyneux’s Regiment” into Google (for example) you will learn far more about the recent activities of the re-enactment unit of this name than you will about the real unit back in the 1640s. Again, I wish to emphasise that this is a perception thing, and there is not necessarily a conflict – the re-enactors themselves are devoted to maintaining the correct traditions and to preserving the true history, and I have nothing but praise for their efforts.
I have no practical experience of this subject, of course, though I’ve seen what they do with flags at the parades associated with the Palio in Siena, so I’m hoping that some knowledgeable veteran of the Sealed Knot, or anyone with some factual knowledge or experience of re-enactment can cast some light here. Of course, chronic and persistent abnormalities do exist. And of course, the small size of the air force means that any aircraft losses are felt keenly. Well, for a start I cannot promise that all the above units ever appeared on the same field at the same time – in fact I’m pretty sure that there are a number of instances here of impossible combinations – units that may never even have existed at the same time. I have a good idea about some units and even some of the flags, but a lot of my first guesses are going to be just straight fiction.
A good proportion of the Royalist units which fought in the area came in from elsewhere, involved prominent colonels and already had a significant reputation and war record. Lancashire had a remarkably high proportion of Catholics in the 1640s – some of these had undoubtedly arrived from Ireland to escape the troubles there, but also a good many of the prominent families were Catholics (and thus Royalists by default). Tyldesley’s lot wore red, probably, and Prince Rupert’s units were in blue, and it seems that a good proportion of the more soldierly of the Parliament units were probably uniformed in good old Northern grey or off-white. There is an unmistakeable whiff of the Royalist side having somehow been the Good Guys – I guess this is connected with the retrospective view which came with the restoration of the monarchy. I really am having a whale of a time! This time around, no untoward incidents, I hear. The example shown here is the Royalist CEW2, before and after, but the procedure is exactly the same for the Parliamentarian REW2. I have been very surprised how often identified units in Lancashire – even Royalist ones – do not rate any mention at all in (for example) Colonel HCB Rogers’ Battles & Generals of the Civil Wars 1642-51 – the standard work.
This is my problem: the proposal is that a flag about the size of the cover from a king-size duvet, albeit made of taffeta, can be mounted on a short pole, and the appointed officer can carry this in one hand in a dignified manner appropriate to military decorum, on the march, in a stiff breeze, on the battlefield – nay – he can even do some genteel tricks with it, with or without passing cannonballs. I have a good number of reference books on this stuff now – it is clear that the flags were about 6½ feet square, and the older books show them mounted on big long poles – even some contemporary illustrations from the National Army Museum, reproduced in Philip Haythornthwaite’s lovely The English Civil War 1642-1651 – an illustrated military history, show a pole about twice the height of the flag. I remove the flag, shorten his base, clean up his shoulder and remodel the brim of his hat (the cast flag is integral with the hat), then drill out the bearer’s hand and superglue a metal pole in place and the job is done.