Disciplined intoxication

What a pleasure it was to me the other day, when the battalion was so nobly treated by the EARL of MEXBOROUGH, to see you in that state of jovial intoxication, like all brothers, without quarrel or uproar. That was a proof of real discipline; but I would not wish you often to be put to such a trial, for your cloathing on such occasions is sure to carry marks of your conviviality.

Teesdale Cockell, Lieutenant-Colonel Commandant, Instructions for the Pontefract Battalion of Volunteers …, Pontefract, 1799.

Detail from the Paris Occupation print ‘L’Empire des Usages ou Chaque pays chaque Mode.’

Happy Christmas! And here’s to an end to war, and to all preparation for war …

3 responses to “Disciplined intoxication

  • Marvin

    Hear, hear! And a Happy Christmas to you.


  • Anthony Dawson

    I was presented with Colonel Teasdale Cockell’s sabre by one of his descendents, Lt. Cdr (SCC) Cockell. It’s a 1796 light cavalry sabre, with an engraved blade. The scabbard is missing.


    • richardawarren

      That’s interesting, thanks. Teesdale (with two e’s I think, as in the Cumbrian valley) Cockell’s ‘Instructions for the Pontefract Battalion’ (essentially a drill book) is on Google books, and worth a look. I got the impression from a bit of browsing that after his service in the American war as a grenadier officer he was on half pay as a Lieut Col until his volunteer battalion was raised in Pontefract in 1797. He seems to have been something of a ‘character’, insisted his volunteers were dressed as regulars, and so on.


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