Tis the Season for Bling!

C3a6c7844469c0658b85d71301e58611Andrea here. Due to the frenzy of the holidays and various demands, I am invoking the Wenchly “Repost” Rule, where we occasionally share an oldie-but-goodie. Given that the holiday season is a time of glittering baubles and bright, festive colors, I thought I would re-share a post on Men in Uniform.

The original blog was inspired by the setting of MURDER AT THE SERPENTINE BRIDGE, Book 6 of my Wrexford & Sloane mystery—the famous Peace Celebrations which were held in London during June of 1814. I was struck by the pomp and splendor of the famous guests—especially the victorious military brass—who came from all over the Continent to celebrate the defeat of Napoleon (this is, the first defeat!) and his exile to the isle of Elba. War is ugly and brutal, leaving a trail of death, desolation and destruction in its wake. So it’s a terrible irony that the painted portraits of the military involved in the interminable Napoleonic Wars have a certain heroic splendor (not to speak of a penchant for over-the-top bling!)

What is it about about uniform festooned with a king’s ransom of gold braid and gaudy baubles that draws a fluttery sigh from the ladies? I confess, during the course of my research, I found myself pausing to admire the, er, eye candy. So, putting aside moral scruples to honor the superb artistry of the Regency painters, I thought I would share some of my favorite examples of Men in Uniform. (The Allied officers play some small cameo roles in my story!) Enjoy the view!

Horatio Nelson

Sir Sidney Smith

Joachim Murat
Auguste de Marmont

Napoleon
Louis-Nicolas d'Avout

Alexander I

Jean-de-Dieu Soult
Sir_John_Moore_by_Sir_Thomas_Lawrence
From top to bottom: Charles Stewart; Horatio Nelson; Sir Sidney Smith; Joachim Murat; Auguste de Marmot; Napoleon; Louis-Nicolas d’Avout; Tsar Alexander I; Jean-de-Dieu Soult; Sir John Moore. (all images courtesy of Wikicommons )

So what about you? Does a man in uniform draw a fluttery sigh? (And even if Santa isn’t putting a hunky military hero under the tree, best wishes to all our Wenchly readers for a happy holiday season filled with good cheer—and good books!)

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