The Earl of Essex's Dragoons Regiment and the Army of Albion

The Army of Albion was established during the events of the First Civil War as demands on extensive campaigning and a more permanent institution grew. Its creation is owed largely to the Lord-General of the Earl of Essex's Dragoons of the time - the Earl of Hertfordshire, Edward de Vries. The regiments raised across the country by local nobles, gentry and magnates were given a permanent and official standing as the Army of England (initially) in 1612. The Dragoons themselves formed the centre, elite regiment and its officers the commanding elements of both the Rergiment and the Army itself.

The Dragoons have not lost all of their foppery and adventurous charm however and have passed much onto the other regiments. It is still fashionable to send young men to join the Army or the Dragoons where they might get an education in discipline and waging war (or women, men and drink).

It is effectively the one and only military force of Albion, loyal to the Monarch (currently King Matthew) and paid for by Crown and Parliament 1). Nobles still occasionally raise private forces, or extra regiments during war, with their money.

New Demands

The changes to the geography of Albion because of the flooding has necessitated changes in the fighting style of Albion's armies. New methods were pioneered throughout the Civil Wars and into the times of peace and have changed the face of warfare in much of Europe. Having suffered the most from flooding and an increase in the value of land and the ability to fight on or from sea, Albion's armies have adapted more than others.

Though the seas have been in the hands of the Venerable Order and the trading Companies for a long time, the Dragoons and other land-based forces quickly adapted to maritime infantry combat. Small boat raids, encircling the enemy, using artillery from ships and firing muskets off a rocking vessel have slowly become the norm in training. If the Army of Albion doesn't see itself as entirely comfortable at sea, it still manages it better than any other Army!

The Army now posseses various vessels big and small and is easily capable of handling itself in sea, river and island battles.

This has resulted in tensions with the Venerable Order to some extent and though the Army is keen to be self-sufficient there is a fear the the protection of the Order might be lost. In the event of conflict between the two groups no-one knows what might happen.

Why Join?

It is never a bad thing to have access to well-trained armed forces and the Earl of Essex's Dragoons are certainly well-trained (the rank and file at least). Depending on your standing and military rank within the organisation it is possible to requisition and use varying amounts of troops for you own private purposes.

Memebership in the Dragoons, and to a slightly lesser degree The Army, bears a certain amounts of prestige and will certainly make you look better in court.

It is possible to command a certain amount of political influence as an officer, either through the Lord-General and other important officers, or more directly as a successful and favoured soldier.

Ranks and Requirements

Affiliation: Affiliation to the Army is public. (In some cases however the Dragoons have been known to employ covert army officers working out of uniform and thus affiliation could be private).

Dragoon and Army ranks: The expertise and elite status of the Dragoons means that in practice the rank of a Dragoon officer is higher than the Army equivalent (but lower than the next proper rank), they tend to be of greater ability or occasionally have enough money to purchase the required commission. A Dragoon rank carries bucketloads more prestige than a normal army rank. The expertise needed as a Dragoons officer is reflected in the rank requirements in brackets.

Water Fights: Any fighting, organisation, adventuring or diplomacy skill requirement can be satisfied with the equivalent in the Navigation skill.

Lieutenant (Rank 1)

Requirements: One (two) rank(s) of fighting, one (two) rank(s) of wealth, or three (four) ranks of adventuring.

The Lieutenant is the lowest officer rank in the Army and is rarely in command of a great number of troops, however, it is possible to rise in the ranks quite quickly.

Captain (Rank 2)

Requirements: Two (three) ranks of fighting, two (three) ranks of wealth or five ranks of adventuring.

The Captain is a more important figure in the Army and will usually have a few Lieutenants under his/her command as well as a company (fifty or more) of soldiers.

Major (Rank 3)

Requirements: Title 2 and either three (four) ranks in wealth, fighting or organisation. PCs with the commoner quirk cannot take this rank or above. They may, however, be able to advance to it.

The Major commands several companies with a dozen officers and has a say in the running and training of the regiments. They are able to personally arrange and command missions. It is harder to get to Major by merit on the battlefield than by investment, but there is no real bar at this stage as competent men are always required and welcome.

Colonel (Rank 4)

Requirements: Title 3 (Viscount) with 4 (5) wealth or 3 wealth together with 4 (5) ranks in either fighting or organisation.

The Colonels are placed in charge of individual regiments (or divisions of the Dragoons) or are tasked with organisation, recruitment, training and other major undertakings withing the Army. The reliance on them is significant and thankfully few rise to this rank or buy into it without the necessary skills. The need to manage resources and men means that that few time-wasters are able to get away with it (not that some don't!)

Being a Colonel also allows you to command significant forces either on campaign on independantly across Albion and Europe.

Major-General (Rank 5)

Requirements: Title 4 with 4 (5) wealth or 5 ranks in two of organisation, fighting, diplomacy, navigation.

The Major-Generals of the Army assist in every aspect of its running and operation. They take command of armies, arrange supplies and training, and ensure that the Army is always ready to repulse threats to Albion. The position comes with great responsibility and though it remains to some degree in the hands of high-ranking nobles, skill is valued above anything.

A Major-General has a say in the conduct and application of the army and is a key advisor of the Lord-General and indirectly the King.

The Clergy

There is nothing that prevents clergy of the Church of England from being attached to the regiment. There is a need for priests to be close by in such a profession as soldiering and their presence is welcomed in the Army

Any priest wishing to be part of the Regiment must also be affiliated with the Church of England and have the nominal rank of Lieutenant though this is only in an advisory role. No Catholic or Puritan may join the regiment.

Advancement in the Regiment

It is possible to advance ranks within the regiment through suitable services or payment. Usually the Lord-General will not allow officers to advance in ranks without some battle experience or contribution to the regiment. If you are able to increase you ranks of wealth or trade in an investment, you can buy yourself into the next rank.

The Earl of Essex

The current (3th) Earl of Essex, Robert Devereux, is the son of the Earl who had created and nurtured the Regiment until his death. The running of the Regiment passed on to the Earl of Hertfordshire, Edward de Vries, while the honorary titlature remained with the Earls of Essex - the Third Earl has continued to finance and look after the regiment and keep his father's legacy going.

The running of the Regiment has since been deputised to a Major-General selected from within the Regiment itself by the Lord-General.

Lord-General the Viscount Constantine Bankstowne of Tremarton

The Lord-General of Albion's Army is appointed by the King or Queen and the current incumbent is the Viscount Tremarton and considered to be a sensible and hard-working individual. He distinguished himself in several battles during the Civil Wars as a young officer and steadily rose through the ranks as he was able to take on more and more duties. Though perhaps not as bright and exciting as Lord-General de Vries or as solid and firm as the Earl of Essex, Tremarton has shown his capability in keeping the Army in good shape during peace time.

The Regiments

Various regiments have distinguished themselves in service of England and Albion during the Civil Wars and in action abroad. The list is here to give you choice and flavour when choosing to play an Army character.

17th East India Regiment

Originally the forces brought by Lord Michael Gerard into Ireland from his own and other East India Company troops, the regiment remained after the departure of its leader. Though the regiment at times was down to but two hundred men, its bravery, determination and loyalty was noted. It has since become a celebrated and honoured regiment of the Army and is still largely made out of ex-Company soldiers or fortune-seekers from India.

4th Somerset Guards

Titled a Guards regiment after their incredible actions in the Battle of London, the 4th Somerset fought all of their Battles outside Somerset. They are known for their bravery, recklessness and the ability to succeed against incredible odds.

23rd Scots Marshalls

Scotland was not short of men willing to fight for Queen Elizabeth II during both the First and the Second Civil wars. The Scots Marshalls were formed shortly before the Catholic rebellion was put down out of Scots soldiers disapproving of King James' extreme treatment of the North of England and feeling affinity for his daughter. Their courage and skill was notable in the defence of Manchester against Prince Charlie.

12th Lancashire

The regiment was formed during the First Civil War and excelled at fighting skirmishes and minor engagements. The regiment has since been operating in the English Colonies of America.

1) Technically the Dragoons part of the Army remains privately funded to some extent, as do new regiments and those attached and maintained during war
dragoons.txt · Last modified: 2007/10/04 12:47 by innokenti