Langton's Horse

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Hierarchical Path: War of the Spanish Succession (Main Page) >> Armies >> British Army >> Langton's Horse

Origin and History

The regiment was formed on 28 July 1685 as the "Earl of Arran's Regiment of Cuirassiers" from six troops raised to curb Monmouth's rebellion. It later became known as the "Duke of Hamilton's Regiment of Cuirassiers". At its creation in 1685, it ranked as 6th Horse.

In 1685, the regiment took part in the training camp on Hounslow Heath before taking up its quarters at Winchester and Andover. In 1686, it once more took part in the training camp on Hounslow Heath and then took up its quarters at Leicester, Ashby de la Zouch, Loughborough, and Melton Mowbray. In 1686, it once more took part in the training camp on Hounslow Heath and then took up its quarters in London.

In May 1688, the regiment marched to Richmond. In July, it was at the camp on Hounslow Heath and then proceeded to Cambridge, Peterborough, and St. Ives, and afterwards to Ipswich. At the beginning of November, the king fearing an invasion led by the Prince Of Orange, the regiment was ordered to march to London. It was selected to remain as guard near the queen and the infant Prince of Wales. When the prince was sent to Portsmouth, the regiment was released of its duty and ordered to march to Salisbury. When the king fled to France, the Prince of Orange ordered the regiment to march to Stamford in Lincolnshire. In 1689, three troops proceeded to the Isle of Wight to guard Irish prisoners; the three troops of the regiment encamped on Hounslow Heath.

In 1690, the whole regiment was quartered at Oxford and Abingdon. It was then transferred to the vicinity of London; then to Portsmouth and Isle of Wight; and finally to Salisbury and Winchester. Early in 1691, when then old 5th Horse was disbanded, the present regiment took the rank of the disbanded unit. The same year, it proceeded to Hertford, Dartford, and Romford.

In November 1691, during the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment, now known as the “Godfrey’s Horse”, embarked for Flanders. In 1692, it took part in the Battle of Steenkerque. On 7 March 1693, Francis Langston was appointed colonel of the regiment which was, from then on, designated as “Langston’s Horse”. The same year, the regiment fought in the Battle of Landen. In 1695, it formed part of the army covering the siege of Namur. In 1697, it took part in the relief of Bruxelles, before returning to England.

In 1698, the regiment was initially quartered at Northampton, Banbury, and Wellingborough but was later transferred to Dublin where it was placed on the Irish establishment.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive colonels of the regiment were:

  • from 1693 to 1713: Francis Langston

Service during the War

At the beginning of the war in 1701, the regiment was stationed in Ireland.

In 1703, the regiment was again employed on Dublin duty. On 24 July, it was reviewed near that city by his grace the Duke of Ormond, the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland.

In 1704 and 1705, the regiment was usually stationed at or near Dublin, occasionally occupying dispersed cantonments in more remote parts of the kingdom.

During the summer of 1706, the regiment was encamped on the Curragh of Kildare.

On 21 April 1709, two troops attended the Earl of Wharton, the Lord- Lieutenant of Ireland, at his public entry into Dublin.

On 7 May 1710, two troops escorted the Earl of Wharton into Dublin, on his return from England.


In 1685, the regiment was armed and equipped, in common with the other regiments of cuirassiers, with long swords, a pair of long pistols, and short carbines” The men wore hats, with broad brims bound with narrow lace, turned up on one side, and ornamented with ribands; large boots; and gauntlet gloves; their defensive armour was steel cuirasses, and head-pieces. This regiment was distinguished by white ribands, white linings to the coat, white waistcoats and breeches, white horse-furniture, the carbine belts covered with white cloth, and ornamented with lace, and the officers wore white silk sashes. The distinctive colour of the regiment was white.


To do


This article incorporates texts of the following source:

  • Cannon, Richard: Historical Record of the Fourth, or Royal Irish Regiment of Dragoon Guards, London: Longman, Orme, and Co, 1839