Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Origins of the Queen's Royal Regiment

The website of the Queen's Royal Surrey Regiment is one of the better and more extensive regimental websites. A great deal of the website is devoted to the history of the regiment, and provides a good basis to compile a lineage of the Tangier Regiment, which would later became the 2nd Regiment of Foot and eventually, in 1881, the Queen's Royal Regiment, the county regiment for West Surrey.

The origin of this regiment is found in a variety of regiments with a most varying pedigree:
1. the original Tangier Regiment was raised in 1661 in England after the restoration and was intended to garrison Tangier.
2. former Parliamentary regiments. These regiments were raised in 1657 for service in Flanders alongside France in France's with Spain. Three regiments would eventually merge into the Tangier Regiment mentioned above: the regiments from Lord Rutherford (the later Earl of Teviot), Sir Robert Harley, and Roger Alsop (but in 1661 Viscount Falkland may be colonel). By 1663 these four regiments (the original Tangier Regiment and the three ex-Parliamentary regiments) had merged into one English regiment. In 1668 it would merge with the former Irish regiment at Tangier (see next) as a single regiment.
3. former Royalist Irish regiments. These regiments were raised in the 1650s from Irish regiments already in foreign service (the author has not been able yet to find more on this), which joined Charles II army in the late 1650s. This army would serve alongside Spain. Two of these regiments would go to Tangier in late 1661: the regiments of Lewis Farrell and John Fitzgerald. In 1663 these two merged into one Irish regiment. In 1668 the regiment merged with the English regiment at Tangier (see above).

From the above it become clear that no less than six regiments contributed to the pedigree of the Tangier Regiment of 1668, which would become famous as the Queen's Royal Regiment.

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