The Army At Dunbar

The Scots order of battle at Dunbar on 3 September 1650 can be very largely reconstructed from a rather garbled English intelligence summary (BM Harl.6844 fol.123). This was evidently compiled by interrogating prisoners and is supplemented by other evidence, including Sir James Balfour's list of the more prominent Scots casualties and Fit/.pavne Fisher's paintings of captured colours. Where positively identified, details of regimental colours have also been added. Those units marked * were completely destroyed.


General of the Artillery Lord Balfour of Burleigh

Lord Balmerino*

Made up of drafts from other units Lumsden's Brigade; black colours with white saltire Incomplete?

Sir Geo.Buchannan of Buchannan Sir James Campbell of Lawers Sir William Douglas of Kirkness

Sir John Haldane of Gleneagles*

Maj.Gen. James Holbourne Colonel John Innes

Sir Andrew Ker of Greenhead Lord Kirkcudbright* Colonel John Lindsay ofEdzell Master of Lovat Sir James Lumsden* Maj.Gen.Colin Pitscottie

Sir Geo.Preston of Valleyfield Sir Thomas Ruthven of Freeland* Colonel Alexander Stewart*

Sir David Home of Wedderburn

Sir Robert Adair of Kinhilt

Sir Charles Arnott

Lord Brechin

Sir John Brown of Fordell

Colonel Gilbert ('Gibby') Carr

Earl of Cassillis

Col.Thomas Craig of Riccarton Sir Arthur Erskine of Scotscraig Master of Forbes Sir James Halkett Colonel Robert Halkett Lieut.Gen.David Leslie Earl of Leven Lord Mauchline Maj.Gen.Robert Montgomerie Colonel Water Scott Colonel William Stewart Colonel Archibald Strachan

Probably blue, white saltire Brigade commander Lumsden's Brigade; yellow, black saltire

Lawers' Brigade; probably blue, white saltire Brigade commander Brigade commander; r. 1649; red, white saltire r. 1649; blue, white saltire Probably incomplete Red, white saltire Probablv only 3 companies Brigade commander Brigade commander; r. 1 (>49; yellow, black saltire r. 1649; red, white saltire Probably incomplete Lawers' Brigade; red, saltire in canton r.1649 - very weak; green, white saltire

1 troop (from Ulster) 3 troops 3 troops 5 troops?

2 troops

2 troops

3 troops 3 troops

3 troops

2 troops

4 troops?

5 troops?

3 troops 3+ troops 5 troops? 2 troops Incomplete

Colonel's colour, Sir Andrew Ker of Greenhead's Regiment, taken at Dunbar (no.69) and identified by the motto. White field, blue panel with white saltire; thistle and wreath proper - red binding on wreath; gold edge and lettering on scroll. The apparent 'mirror writing' arises from the fact that paint applied directly to silk without a base having first been applied shows straight through to the other side. Alternating the orientation of the inscription made it easier to read from either side.

Lord Coupar

Other infantry regiments which mav have been present are Lord Coupar's and Colonel John Forbes of Leslie's, although it seems much likelier that their colours were actually taken at Inverkeithing in the following year.


Note that the numbers of troops making up each regiment are uncertain, since orders to levy cavalrymen appear to have been implemented only with great difficulty.

Sir Robert Ker Greenhead

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