Sharpe Dressed Man

Guest Post by Erastes

What presses your buttons?  What gets you all hot under the collar?  I don’t mean angry, obviously, this isn’t an anger management site, but a site where we all, gay, straight, male or female appreciate men in all their glory.

For me… it’s…


Stop that.  That’s not EXACTLY what I had in mind.  So get out of that outfit and into something more suitable.

Anyway, it doesn’t have enough buttons.

Yes. BUTTONS!  Erastes can spend hours on the internet just drooling at the detailing of 18th and 19th century uniforms.  I can be sidetracked for DAYS as I look at all the lovely outfits they wore in Nelson’s Navy and only a day or two ago I wasted hours worrying about what the buttons were made of on a Hussar’s uniform because I had someone unbuttoning the jacket. (In the end I had him cut them open and bypassed the buttons entirely)

I’ve been wanting to write about the hussars for ages.  Hussars were the glamour boys of the regiments, the Football stars of the day, as it were – hard drinking, hard fighting. They looked good and they knew it.

I wanted originally to do a book about the medieval Polish Hussars who were complete nutters and went to war wearing wings.  With a cheetah skin wrapped around them.


As you can see. COMPLETE NUTTERS

But then as I started to research the later Hussars and quite fell in love with the uniforms. The pelisses! The dolmans!  The Shako!  The frogging!  I mean – WOOF!

I can fully understand why men don’t go to war dressed like that these days but OMG so pretty.  (And you can clearly see that this gentleman dresses to the right…) (if you were looking) (which of course, I wasn’t)

And then there’s Captain Sexy Britches.

No, it’s not Adam Ant, but by GUM it looks like him.  There is nothing not sexy about this man and his uniform.  The cut away coat, stylishly showing off the package, the pose–nicely effeminate but still saying “come and have a go if you think you’re hard enough.” The colour of the uniform itself (who goes to war in white and light electric blue?) THE BOOTS OMG THE BOOTS.

OK. Erastes is overheating now.  Not good. Not good.

Luckily, there are sites like this that I can drool over.

I think what I need is to start buying GI Joes and making them little hussar outfits.

Too weird?

I love the internet.  You can google ANYTHING and find that it’s already been done…..

And you just KNOW the moustachioed gent on the right is ogling that bit of flesh that the twinky soldier is cheekily showing…

runs off to toystore

My love for uniform does extend to more modern things.  I do love a half dressed fireman (preferably holding a cat) or West Point cadets… but hussars will always hold my love, I think.  It’s the frogging.  And no-one does it better than this man.

What about you?  Do you long for the return of the breeches and the Hessian boots (I thought they were actually made of Hessian, you know, at one point)(they aren’t)

Do tell! Please reassure me it’s not just me….


Erastes is an author of gay historical fiction. Her novels cover many time periods and locations. She lives in Norfolk UK with demanding cats and never seems to have enough time to serve them.


  • I must be strange. A man in uniform causes a fear reaction in me. I don’t freak out over the guys in the Burger King shirts, but seeing an off-duty uniformed cop or firefighter in a store makes my breath catch and the adrenaline start. Let’s not even go into military.
    On the other hand, I have a thing for over the knee boots, tight pants and lots of buttons or frogs on a coat. Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century stuff sends me, even if I think the period literature is dull as dishwater.

  • I live near Naval Academy…4th and 3rd class Midshipmen (freshman and sophomores) have to wear full dress uniforms at all times off base.
    Makes for very nice people watching in downtown Annapolis.

  • I’ve just been getting into Hornblower recently, so I’m very into the Georgian times Royal Navy uniforms just now. In fact I got an age of sail historical novel out of the library the other day based mostly on the extreme yumminess of the cover featuring men in those clothes.

    I’m still inclined to prefer Sharpe’s though, because of the short jacket. It’s not just for the symbolism of Sharpe marching on that most of the movies end with him walking away from camera, is it? 😀 In fact Sean Bean just looks weird to me in modern clothes. He only looks right in something historical.

    I also got Inglourious Basterds on DVD at Christmas and I turn into a pile of goo at Michael Fassbender in the German Army uniform in the tavern scene.

    • heh heh – yes. Sharpe always walks away, and you get the feeling that those trousis might JUST chafe a little, with those bandy legs….

      Not that I was looking…

      Now I have to get I.B. just for Fassbender. I love him!

  • Used to love uniforms, but have moved away from it a little (even though German dress uniform is YUM!). Camoflage still does it, though. Three piece charcoal tailored pinstripe does it for me, and, more historically, I love the tricorne. I believe we should re-introduce the tricorne for men on a grand scale. Maybe tie it in with tax relief.

    Let’s start a petition at Whitehall.

    • Hats! oh yes, men in hats. Why did men stop wearing hats? Now, me, I look like Paddington in a hat, but I love men in hats.

  • Erastes
    I think this is one of your most inspired posts. I LOVE a man in uniforn; and boots, oh my.

    I don’t go for buttons except if they’re on dress slacks or jeans but then I like what’s inside much more than the buttons. 🙂

    My two favourite movies starring men in uniform are: An Officer and a Gentleman with Richard Gere and A Few Good Men with Jack Nicholson and Tom Cruise. I have watched these movies over and over and still can’t get enough of them. I must say though that the best modern day uniform for me is the one worn by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). Now that’s hot. 🙂

  • Those Polish Hussars with their wings – what was the reasoning behind that? The enemy laughed themselves to death? Wearing wings in a scrap must have been really difficult. How do you manouevre? If you fall off your horse, it’d be like getting stuck in a parachute. Maybe there’d be an advantage if you had to jump off a cliff.
    I’m partial to Richard Sharpe and his frogging and his boots, and also his incredibly tight trousers with the leather patches up the inside. Mmm. But I have to say my favourite form of dress on a man is the kimono (ancient Chinese dress is even hotter, but you don’t see guys wandering around in it any more). It’s so specific to put on that the act of dressing rather than undressing is so sexy. All those layers. It’s like gift wrap.

    • It was medieval, so I would think it would scare the crap out of people–imagine hundreds of them galloping towards you.

      I think that the wings were actually mainly attached to the saddle, though.

      I agree with the oriental dress though – delicious.

      • Polish Hussars had wings not to scare the people but horses. The same goes for wolfskins some of them dressed. Polish horses were specially trained before the battles not to panic at ‘weird’ objects.
        What’s more, it was said that the wings made rustling noise which made it immposible for their adversaries to judge how many of hussars were there.
        Wings came in all sizes and shapes. Most hussars had the ‘big’ wings (those from the picture Erastes provided) attached to the sadle and not their back. Some had little wings at the headgear, light wings fixed to their backs or even some feathers pinned to the shields.

        Hope this helps 🙂
        PS: They teach this things in history classes at Polish primary schools.


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