A Look at the World’s Silliest Military Uniforms

Published February 22, 2015
Updated February 28, 2018

Free from the shackles of being functional, formal military dress tends to dabble--and occasionally get lost in--whimsy.

Military battle dress is generally similar all over the world, since the physical demands of hard marching, concealment, and having lots of pockets are the same whether you’re the vicious oppressor or the noble freedom fighter.

Formal uniforms, however, are free of the utilitarian requirements of crawling and getting shot at, so designers have traditionally felt free to liberate every silly flourish in their arsenal when designing a parade kit:

Silly Uniforms Swiss Guard
Silly Uniforms Swiss Painting
Silly Uniforms Swiss Pikes
Silly Uniforms Yeoman Warder
A Look at the World’s Silliest Military Uniforms
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Quick note: Many of these men are dressed in costumes Pennywise the Clown would consider demeaning, but that should by no means be taken to imply anything about their fighting ability. Almost literally 100 percent of these people are able to beat you half to death if you laugh at them in person, so we have to recommend against that.

Richard Stockton
Richard Stockton is a freelance science and technology writer from Sacramento, California.