Sir Robert Monro’s Regiment of Foot

Active1639
1640 to 1648
CountryScotland
AllegianceCovenanter
ConflictsFirst Bishops' War
Second Bishops' War
Irish Confederate War
TypeFoot
ColonelSir Robert Monro
Area RaisedSouth of the Tay
Coat Colour
Flag Colour
Flag Design
Field ArmiesMonro

Scots Covenanter regiment of foot of Monro’s army serving in the Bishops' Wars then in the Irish Confederate War

Service History

1639

  • First Covenanter regiment raised
  • March: Take Edinburgh Castle
  • March: Monro commissioned Major General
  • Patrol the Borders
  • April: 300 foot detached to garrison Dumfries
  • June: Either defending Ayr & Lothian or join Leslie at Duns Law
  • June: Disbanded after the Treaty of Birks

1640

  • March: Commissioned to be raised
  • May: Occupy Aberdeen
  • June: Taking of Drum House
  • June: Taking of Ardessie
  • June: Taking of Lethenty & Newtown of Culsalmond
  • July: Siege of Strathbogie Castle and mutiny there, Monro quells the mutiny by slaying the ringleader with his 'long sword'
  • July: Taking of Spynie Palace
  • August: Taking of Banff
  • August: Taking of Inchdrewer House
  • September: Return to Aberdeen
  • September to October: Quartered in Leith and Musselburgh
  • October to August 1641: Blockade of Berwick

1641

  • August: Retained in service despite the general Scots disbandment
  • September: Quartered in the Merse and Teviotdale
  • Quartered near Edinburgh

1642

  • March: Shipped from Largs to Carrickfergus, though windbound off Arran for some time
  • April: Garrison Carrickfergus
  • April: Skirmish at Kilwarlin Woods
  • May: Siege of Newry?
  • May: Taking of Dunluce Castle (det of 400)
  • May?: Occupation of Antrim
  • July: Standoff at Charlemont?

1643

  • May: Skirmish at Tanderagee?
  • May: Battle of Lochgall
  • May: Skirmish at Glencane Woods?
  • May: Taking of Newcastle?
  • July: Taking of Dungannon?
  • August to September: Siege of Charlemont?

1644

  • May: Seizure of Belfast
  • June: Rendezvous at Lisnagarvey to campaign in Leinster (8 coys)
  • July to September: Campaign against Lord Castlehaven
  • July: Repulsed from Newry?
  • July: Taking of Kells?
  • August to September: Standoff at Charlemont?
  • September: Skirmish at Blackwaterford?

1645

  • 200 men detached to Home of Heugh's composite regiment that return to Scotland

1646

  • June: Battle of Benburb
  • Return to garrison at Carrickfergus

1648

  • About 300 men detached to Colonel George Monro’s force, serving with the Engagers in England
  • September: Loss of Carrickfergus to Monck, regiment disbanded

Notes

A history of the unit is shown in Edward M. Furgol’s A Regimental History of the Covenanting Armies 1639-1651 Edinburgh, 1990. ISBN 0 85976 194 0

Shown as ? where Monro was present.

The regiment was something of a penal unit, incorporating prisoners from the lowlands (according to one source, adulterers, fornicators, thieves, murderers and Sabbath-breakers) and press-ganged highlanders.

In 1639 it's uncertain whether Monro's force joined Leslie at Duns Law prior to the Treaty of Birks (Treaty of Berwick).

Some of what had been Sir Robert Monro's regiment returned to Ireland under George Monro and were active in 1649.

Coats, Flags and Equipment

1000 commanded musketeers took Edinburgh Castle in 1639, implying at least 1000 muskets in the unit of 2000 unless other regiments also contributed men to the force.

Notable Officers

A list of the regiment's officers is shown in Stuart Reid's Scots Armies of the 17th Century 1. The Army of the Covenant 1639-1651 Partizan Press 1998 ISBN 094652550

Sir Robert Monro

Robert Monro. There is also the General Robert Monro website dedicted to the man and his times.

Colin Pitscottie

Lieutenant Colonel in 1639.

Hugh Frazer

Lieutenant Colonel, later raised Colonel Hugh Frazer’s Regiment of Dragoons

Strength

  • 1639: 2000 men
  • June 1640: 966 officers and men
  • July 1640: 1142 officers and men
  • August 1640: 1438 men
  • September 1641: 1400 officers and men
  • April 1642: 1405 men and 149 officers in 14 companies
  • June 1646: 5-600 at Benburb (estimated)

See Also