RN Cdr, Full Dress (38/40")
- RN Cdr, Full Dress (38/40")
Royal Navy Commander Full Dress
A Royal Navy Full Dress uniform ranked to a Commander, consisting of tailcoat, ceremonial epaulettes, bicorn hat, sword belt/slings and tin travelling/storage boxes (no trousers). Double-breasted high-necked doeskin tailcoat has 16 King's crown RN officer's buttons to front, 3 to each cuff which are ranked with gold Commander's lace and white cuff facings.10 KC buttons to rear, with gilt laced flaps and a single brass belt hook. Coat has some defects - see "Condition" below for details.
Gilt ceremonial leather-backed padded epaulettes with embroidered King's crown and silver fouled anchors detach from the tailcoat via a locking brass slider mechanism.
Felt bicorn hat has black lace edging, gold bullion adornments, black cockade, and bullion Commander/Captain's rank with a King's crown button.
Epaulettes and bicorn both stored in original black painted tin trunk measuring 18" x 9" x 8" with remains of markings "Eng (illegible) F J Symons, Royal Navy".
Ceremonial leather sword belt has gilt facings, King's crown brass locket, and gilt faced leather sword slings with brass fittings. Belt by Moore, Scantlebury & Coote.
Uniform and belt stored in original tin trunk with 2 hasps and lock. Trunk is copper lined and contains a makers plate "S.W.Silver & Co, Cornhill London" and is clearly marked "Eng.Commander FJS Symons". There is a contemporary looking key but it does not appear to fit the lock.
Date: Undated, but most likely late '20s to '30s (see owners details below).
Sizes: Jacket approx 38/39" chest. Actual measurements are:
Chest Width (laid flat): 20"
Jacket Waist (width, laid flat): 20"
Length (collar to front hem): 16.5"
Length (collar to rear tail): 38"
Bicorn Hat: Approx 55/57cm
Condition: Tailcoat fabric is basically in good condition, no significant marks or stains or damage, although there is a single moth hole to the left shoulder near the epaulette (approx 3mm diameter, see photo #18). The white cuff facings and collar originally had a gilt lace edge which has been unstitched and removed at some point (see photo #14 and #17). The cuff facings are securely attached to the coat top and bottom, but unstitched at the sides. There are a dozen or so small moth holes to the inner tail lining, largest being approx 5mm x 3mm. Overall a very nice collectable piece that could be restored to very good condition with a little bit of attention.
Epaulettes are in very good condition. Gilt is slightly faded but clean and undamaged. The silk lining that covers the underside padding has disintegrated but this is not visible when attached.
Bicorn in excellent condition. Clean, damage free, bright and unfaded.
Belt/slings in very good condition. Clean and damage free, just light fading to the gilt.
Externally the tin trunks have surface rust and remains of original black paint. Inside the Epp/Bicorn trunk has been painted in black paint. The uniform trunk is internally in good bright condition..
History: Owned by Engineering Commander Frederick James Stallard Symons, born 1890 and joined RN as a Boy 1st Class on his 18th birthday, 1908. Served aboard various ships until he attended officer selection in Aug 1916. Appointed Engineering Commander on 30/6/1930, he served aboard HMS Argus, he was Eng.Cdr onboard aircraft carrier HMS Courageous during it's 17/9/1939 U-Boat sinking, and was one of 38 rescued and transferred to HMS Kelly, where according to the family he was provided use of a cabin by a certain Lord Louis Mountbatten. Appointed to HMS Pyramus shore establishment Nov 1939, He was placed on the retired list with rank of Eng.Captain on 21.3.1940 and was serving at HMS Warren Combined Operations senior officer training establishment from 1943 to 1945, and at HMS Spartiate (River Clyde security shore establishment, Glasgow).
Photos of Eng.Cdr Symons in gallery below.
Click to enlarge
Items are sold as seen, and described as accurately as possible. Please note that all items are used and therefore a certain amount of wear is to be expected. Any fundamental defects/deficiences are stated. Many items have been tailored and therefore sizes may be approximate.
Please feel free to contact us (including your email address) requesting any additional information or photographs you may require prior to purchase. We are happy to oblige!