top of page

New Addition to the Malta Time-gun Museum: Royal Artillery Shako Plate from 1812-1816

Fondazzjoni Wirt Artna - the Malta Heritage Trust has added to its museum collection an important Royal Artillery shako plate which was worn between 1812 and 1816. The die-struck brass plate is surmounted by a crown and has at its center an oval garter inscribed "Royal Regt of Artillery" with the symmetrical "G.R." (Georguis Rex) Cypher within. Below the garter there is a mortar flanked by two flaming shells on either side. The plate measures 13.5 x 5.5cm. This example retains some elements of its original gilding. Both officers and other ranks wore the same plate design save for the gilding which was restricted to officers. This type of plate was worn on the Belgic Shako which was introduced for universal use by both officers and men on 18 March 1812. At the time, officers had their bicorns replaced by this new type of headgear whereas soldiers had been wearing a shako since 1799.

The term “Belgic” given to this type of shako relates to its first use by British infantry at the Battle of Waterloo in Belgium. The plate was attached to the front of the shako's fabric by means of thread.

This type of shako plate was worn by the Royal Artillery in Malta and was certainly worn by gunners at eth Saluting Battery in Valletta who were tasked with the firing of ceremonial salutes and the time-gun.

This plate will be added to the Royal Artillery insignia collection on display at the Malta Time-gun Museum at Castille Place, Valletta open Mon to Sat between 10.00am till 16.30hrs.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page