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Regimental colour, 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Foot, 1818

The Royal Irish Regiment traced its origins back to the British Civil Wars (1639-1651), but was officially formed in 1684, entering the English establishment in 1689.

From 1718 to 1745, the regiment was stationed on Minorca, and briefly in Flanders, before returning to Britain in the aftermath of the Second Jacobite Rebellion (1745-1746).

In 1751, the Regiment was given a regimental numeral of 18, despite being the seventh oldest British infantry regiment at that time.

The Regiment remained in Britain and Ireland until 1767, when it was deployed to North America. It was still there on the outbreak of the American War of Independence (1775-1783). It spent the early 1780s garrisoning the Channel Islands and Gibraltar against America's French and Spanish allies. It was in action from the start of the French Revolutionary Wars (1792-1802), serving at the siege of Toulon in 1793, garrisoning Corsica in 1794, and serving as marines in the Mediterranean in 1797.

The Regiment also fought in Egypt in 1801 before returning to Ireland. It was then posted to the West Indies from 1805 until the end of the war in 1814. After nearly 250 years' service, it was disbanded in 1922 on the establishment of the Irish Free State.

NAM Accession Number

NAM. 1973-10-29-1


National Army Museum Copyright


National Army Museum, Study Collection

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