Prince Rupert’s Regiment of Horse

Active1642-1646
CountryEngland
AllegianceRoyalist
ConflictsFirst Civil War
TypeHorse
ColonelPrince Rupert
Sir Thomas Dallison
Area Raised
Flag ColourUnknown
Flag DesignUnknown
Field ArmiesOxford 1642-3
Rupert 1644
Oxford 1645

The most famous regiment of Royalist horse, led by Prince Rupert, nephew of King Charles I

Service History

1642

  • August: Rupert arrives at Newcastle and joins the King at Leicester
  • August: Attack Caldecote Hall but retire after Mrs Purefoy's steadfast defence
  • September: Battle of Powick Bridge
  • October: Skirmish at King’s Norton?
  • October: Skirmish at Wormleighton
  • October: Battle of Edgehill
  • November: Battle of Aylesbury
  • November: Standoff at Windsor
  • November: Skirmish at Kingston upon Thames
  • November: Battle of Brentford
  • November: Standoff at Turnham Green
  • December: Storm of Marlborough
  • December: Quartered at Abingdon

1643

  • January: Standoff at Cirencester
  • February: Storm of Cirencester
  • March: Standoff at Bristol
  • March: Stormed at Malmesbury (det under Capt Curson)
  • March: Skirmish at Aylesbury
  • March: Taking of Malmesbury
  • April: Storm of Birmingham
  • April: Siege of Lichfield
  • June: Quartered at Wheatley Bridge
  • June: Skirmish at Islip
  • June: Skirmish at Chinnor
  • June: Battle of Chalgrove Field
  • July: Skirmish at Padbury
  • July: Storm of Bristol
  • August to September: Siege of Gloucester
  • September: Skirmish at Stow on the Wold
  • September: Battle of Aldbourne Chase
  • September: First Battle of Newbury
  • September: Skirmish at Aldermaston & Padworth
  • October: Taking of Newport Pagnell?
  • October: Repulsed from Northampton
  • October: Taking of Bedford
  • November: Skirmish at Towcester?
  • November: Dyve's troop quartered at Aylesbury

1644

  • January: Standoff at Aylesbury
  • March: Skirmish at Market Drayton
  • March: Battle of Newark
  • May: Skirmish at Knutsford?
  • May: Storm of Stockport
  • May: Storm of Bolton
  • June: Siege of Liverpool
  • June: Taking of Clitheroe?
  • July: Battle of Marston Moor
  • August: Skirmish at Welshpool
  • September: Skirmish at Newtown (det under Gardiner)
  • November: Relief of Donnington

1645

  • January: Repulsed from Abingdon
  • April: Skirmish at Ledbury
  • April: Relief of Beeston Castle
  • April: Storm of Ledbury
  • May: Siege of Hawkesley House
  • May: Storm of Leicester
  • June: Battle of Naseby
  • July: Ordered to Bristol
  • August to September: Besieged in Bristol

1646

  • May to June: Besieged in Oxford
  • June: Disbanded at surrender of Oxford

Notes

Flags & Equipment

Equipped with both carbines and pistols in 1643, going by ammunition issues.

Notable Officers

Prince Rupert

Sir Thomas Dallison

Sir Thomas Dallison was colonel of Rupert's horse, and was killed in battle at Naseby in 1645.

Daniel O'Neill

Daniel O'Neill, usually referred to as Dan, served as Lieutenant Colonel to Prince Rupert's horse.

Officer Lists

From original research by Victor Judge aka BCW user 1642

Prince Rupert's Regiment of Horse A WORK IN PROGRESS

  • Sargeant Major Scrimshire (1)
  • Captain Sir Thomas Gardiner (2) + (3)
  • Captain Robert Curson (3)
  • Captain Lewis Dyve (5)
  • Captain Lieutenant William Curson (4)
At Newark

E.38.10

Prince Rupert's Regiment of Horse at the taking of Newark 1644

  • Lieutenant Colonel O'Neale
  • Sargeant Major Legge
  • Lord
  • Sir Lewis Dyve
  • Sir Thomas Dallison
  • Captain Cob
  • Captain Gardiner
  • Captain Martin
  • Captain Richardson

Lots more details.

Contemporary References

(1) Maj Skrimshire

E.252.48 A diary, Colonel Skrimshaw, Major of Prince Ruperts own Regiment taken at Pershore.

(2) Sir Thomas Gardiner

E.256.7 A diary, or, An exact iournal. 13-19.9.1644 Taken with his troop at New Town Letter

(3) Capt Robert Curson

Harl.Mss.6804 f.103

To the right honorable Lords and others of his Majesties Councell of Warre The humble petition of Robert Curson Esq, Captayne of a Troope of horse in the Regiment of Prince Rupert his Highness.

Sheweth that his Troope being at Malmsbury about the xxth of March last uppon losse of the said Towne your petitioner did thereby suffer losse in ready money the sum of two hundred pounds and in clothes, horse armes and all other things, the whole damage amounting to neere to the value of 400L or thereabouts which losse was principly occasioned by Gent. yeoman and other neare inhabitants unto the same towne which stand disaffected to his Majesties service, many of them appearing in rebellion.

May it therefore please your honors to take the premises into your consideration and to give your petitioner allowance to present against such offenders.

Offenders Glookes of Tatterton, Capt.White of Griliton, William Tanner of Pughe Church, Edward Sumner of Sutton, Edward Wayte, John Blake.

Munitions

WO55.458/9 P6280016

These are to desire and require you immediately upon sight thereof to deliver to this bearer for the Troopes of Capt: Curson and Capt: Gardiner of my Regiment now quartering at Wheatley Bridge fifteene pounds of Powder with a fitt proportion of Pistoll Carabine and Muskett ball and one skeyne of Match and for your soe doing this shall bee your warrant given at Oxford the 4th day of June 1643.

Rupert

5th June 1643

Received out of his Majesties stores as is required by the warrant

  • Powder 15lb
  • Muskett Shott)
  • Carabine Shott)
  • and Pistoll Shott) 15lb
  • Match one skeyne

Tho: Gardiner

(4) Capt Lt William Curson

SP19.141.77

Wiliam Curson Esq. of Waterperry in County Oxon being a Captaine Lieutenant or other Officer of command in ye Kings Armay at the tyme ye King was at Oxon. did ride in company with other souldiers of the Kings Army with their pistolls cockt in their hands in Norlech* in Gloucestershire: and himselfe alighting from of his horse went into Henry Freemans house in Norlech and fecht out his Gelding out of his stables and carried him away for the Kings service: the said Freeman keeping a souldier for the Parliaments service in Cicester^: being about a month or 6 weeks before Prince Rupert tooke Cicester. June 21 1650 Henry Freeman

* Northleech

Skirmish at Newtown

House of Lords.

Letter from Sir Thomas Myddleton, at Montgomery, to his much honoured cousin, John Grlyn, Esq., Recorder of London.

Is at this present at Montgomery town; has sent to the castle and received a satisfactory answer ; the writer and his party have been at Newton, and taken Sir Thos. Gardner, with his whole troop of horse, his cornet, and quartermaster, and about twenty-eight troops, the rest fled ; some sixty horse were taken, and but few arms, for they had not many, and thirtysix barrels of powder, intended for Chester, wherethey want it. Sir Thomas and his force came by forced marches from Oswestry to Newton, with much difficulty, on account of the foulness of the roads and the breaking of the bridges by the enemy, the water being so high that they could not pass through any ford. The Prince, with his beaten forces, has gone from Chester by Ruthin, &c. to Bishop's Castle ; desires that the .sending of money and arms may be hastened. 5 Sept. 1644.

(5) Harrison's petition

The humble petition of Rowland Harrison of Whitby, — Sheweth —

That your petitioner was a soldier under the command of Sir Lewis Divis in one of the Troopes of Prince Rupert's Rigiment, when our Sovereign Lord, King Charles the First, pitcht his standard first at Nottingham, and was in the engagement at Worcester, and afterwards at Edge Hill ; and was at the taking of Banbury, and at Branford fight, where they took five hundred prisoners and five peices of Ordinance ; and was at the taking of Malbury : and when they went to take Sisester your petitioner was taken prisoner on Candlemas eve, and lay in the Gaol at Glosester untill the second day of May following, when he gott out of prison, came into their owne Troop at Abbington, and afterwards engaged with Sir Arthur Hasslerigg, whome they rooted, and then march'd into the West and was at the taking of Larpool, and then came to York fight at Hessaw Moor, and there was beaten by the Parliament's forces : after march'd into Wales, where they had their quarters beat up at Welchpool ; after was in the engagement in Nasebrough Feild, where your petitioner was one of the nine that escaped out of three and thirty that went out of Prince Rupert's Regiment : Afterwards your petitioner was kept eight weeks in prison at Esome, where hee, with seaven and twenty more, broke the prison and got away : and was in severall other engagements where they beat up their enemies' quarters : and yet hath hitherto lived by his labour, without being burthensome to his Majesty or the country. But being now about seaventy years of age and growne infirm, and having a wife and family to maintaine, humbly prays some small pention for the releife of his necessities.

The attestation of Sir H. Cholmeley is affixed, stating his familiarity with the statements made, and his belief of their truth, the petitioner having been personally known to him for more than thirty years. Several other names of well-known Whitby men are also added, but there is no endorsement to show that the gallant veteran obtained his request.

Prince Rupert's Beaver

E.254.21 A Diary 15-22.8.1644

‘There is a report that Prince Rupert lost his Beaver in the late great defeat at York; He never wears a Beaver in the field but a Dutch white hat, which being to ingage himself in fight, he plucks down about his eares as low as possibly he can, and that paradventure he may loose, but he can never loose his steele Cap, for when he puts on that, he takes up his haire (which he weareth very long) and throwes it quite over his Cap, and that it might not fall downe againe, he ties it close above his Cap with a silke ribbond, so that he can never loose his Cap unless he doth loose his head with it, which he was never more like to doe then now, for wote you what.’

Franklin's Information

SP19.133.89

The informacion of William Franklin against Richard Towersey, John Robinson and Thomas Birch of ye County of Oxon whoe desires summons for his witnesses to make good the same.

First the said Richard Towersey did furnish a mare to serve in the Kings party against the Parliament.

That John Robinson did lend moneys for the raysing of a Troope of Horse under the Command of Capt. Gardiner in Ruperts Regiment, and did disburse moneys for recruits of Horse for the said Troope, from time to time, as need required.

That ye said Thomas Birch was in actuall Armes in the aforesaid Troope of Capt. Gardiner, and voluntarily served therein, and furnished himselfe with horse and Armes at his own charge for that service.

William Franklin n.d.

Dyve at Aylesbury

Add. Mss. 18980 f. 153 Sir Lewis Dyves Aylesbury 28th November 1643

May it please your Highness.

I understand from Sir Arthur Aston that it was your pleasure that both my Troope of Horse and Regiment of Foot should remayne here in thease bare and necessitous quarters, which hath almost destroyed them boath already and which a few dayes more in this place will perfectly finish. and hereby Sir I should bee infinitely greeved that a troope which hath so longe done your Highness all faithful service in your owne Regiment should in that manner be lost which I know is far from your Highness intention to have it so. I am therefore become a humble and earnest sutor to your Highness that my troope may returne backe with your owne Regiment as being a parte of it, when you shall be pleased to calle them backe to theyre owne quarters, otherwise I shall despose of keeping them together, theyre necessityes are so great allready, and growing every day more and more uppon them without hope of remedy. MORE TO TYPE

Strength

  • October 1642: 7 troops at Edgehill
  • May 1645: 400 men in 8 troops at Leicester1)

See Also

Prince Rupert's Regiment of Horse are re-enacted by Prince Rupert's Cavalry of the Sealed Knot.

1) British Library Harleian Ms 911

Discussion

tim, 11/02/2016 18:51
crgsos wrote: In fact the point about the first item in the timeline above is that Prince Rupert did not take Caldecot Hall, home of William Purefoy. He spared it and the inhabitants on account of their magnificent defence. There are many versions of this story but that behaviour by Rupert is common to all.
tim, 11/02/2016 18:51
Many thanks crgsos, I'll edit accordingly
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