Russian Dragoons during

the Reign of Empress Anna 1730-40.

by Vladimir "Gromoboy"

Russian Dragoons were a "mixed arm", partly infantry and partly cavalry, in contrast to the most of European Dragoons who were actually used as cavalry by this era. Availability of the own regimental artillery & digging tools allowed them to solve different tasks without assistance. For example, during the action at Shvetc 2 Dragoon regiments repaired destroyed bridge under cover of regimental guns, then crossed the river in unmounted columns & attacked Polish as cavalry.

1. Organization.

Russian Dragoon regiment in 1732-42 consisted of 10 Fusilier companies. Grenadier company was disbanded in 1732 & its ranks were distributed among Fusilier companies (10 in each company). Nevertheless, during drill, parade or parade they formed a separate company, the 11-th in regiment. The full wartime strength of Dragoon regiment was 1 185 [3].

Left: Fusilier of the Dragoon regiment in 1732-42. Water-color by Chernikov & Borisov.

(Source: [4] Vol. II, illustration 267)

This illustration shows the most details of the uniform & ammunition. Draw attention on the coat skirts: they are turned back

Dragoon regiments also had regimental artillery of 2 3-pdr cannons served by crews from dragoons except for gunners & fourleitors, who were ranks of the Artillery Corps.


2. Uniform & ammunition.

Dragoon uniform was of the same pattern as in Infantry with only difference in colors, & didnt change much since Peter the Great age.

Blue or cornflower coat with horizontal pockets. Red (white in 1720-31) turn-down collar, round cuffs, lining & facing of the buttonholes. Buttons: 3 on each cuff & flap of the pocket, 2 on bodice, 8 on coat-breast. All illustrations (Wiskovatov, etc.) show coat skirts turned back.

Vest & breeches: elk leather. Vest was long-sleeved with horizontal pockets & 18 small buttons on coat-breast.

Neckcloth was white.

Left: Dragoon uniform of 1731 pattern



Dragoons of the Fusilier companies & stab-officers wore black tricorn trimmed with white lace & white rosette/cockade on the left side.


Grenadiers had had the same uniform as other Dragoons, but with Grenadier cap instead of tricorn. It was of the infantry 1731 pattern, but blue (or cornflower) instead of green.

Left: Dragoon Grenadier Cap of 1731 pattern

Dragoon ammunition consisted of:

Grenadiers had also grenade pouch.

Every second dragoon had an axe.

Dragoon NCOs had the same uniform as privates, without laces as in Infantry. The only differences were in ammunition:

3. Flags.

Russian Dragoons during the reign of Empress Anna used colours of 1731 pattern. New flags, adopted on October 28, 1731 partly repeated the previous pattern of 1727. Dragoon colours of 1731 were like infantry one, but with gold fringe & without flames in corners. Dragoon regiment had 10 colours, 1 for each company. The colour of the first company was white, other were coloured. "White" or "regimental" colour had white field with Russian eagle & cross of St. Andrew in the centre. On the eagles chest was regimental or state (if regiment didnt have own arms) arms. Table of the regimental arms will be placed later. Other 9 "company" colours had coloured field, decorated with with regimental or state arms in the centre. Field could be following:


  1. Leonov O., Ulianov I., The Regular Infantry, Volume 1 1698-1700, Moscow 1995.
  2. Manstein C., Notes about Russia (1727-44), Moscow, 1997.
  3. Maslovskiy D., Attack of Danzig by FM count Minikh in 1734. Collection of relations & orders by count Minikh, Peterburg, 190?
  4. Wiskovatov, Historical description of the Russian Military uniforms, Vol. II,

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