Åboläns Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> Swedish Army >> Åboläns Infantry

Origin and History

The regiment was created in 1620 when the Finnish Grand Regiment was divided into smaller units. It became an Indelta regiment in 1694.

In 1634, a government regulation ranked the Åboläns Regiment third among the infantry regiments.

During the Great Northern War, two companies in Riga 1699, the remainder departed for Riga in the Spring 1700, fortress garrison thereafter. One battalion with Lewenhaupt to the Ukraine, 1708. After the battle of Ljesna, 1708, the survivors were placed under Västerbottens regiment and captured after Poltava. The second battalion was captured after the Riga's fall in 1710. Reraised in 1710 and belonged to the Army of Finland. In the campaign against Trondhjem, 1718.

At the beginning of the Seven Years' War, this Finnish regiment was slightly under strength, counting 1,025 men. It consisted of two battalions of 4 companies, each company had 140 men.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:

  • 1757: B. O. Stackelberg

Service during the War

By the end of August 1757, 6 companies of the regiment (about 850 men) had been transported across the Baltic towards Swedish-Pomerania.

On August 27 1759, during the campaign of Pomerania, the regiment formed part of the force who covered the assault and capture of the entrenchments of Swinemünde. On September 15, the regiment and Meijerfelt Grenadiers attacked the Prussian outposts in front of Wollin, forcing their defenders to retire to the fortified town. On October 1, the regiment followed Fersen's Corps when it left the Oder islands to join the Swedish Main Army in Pasewalk.

To do: campaigns from 1760 to 1763

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1756 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with a tin button on the left side
Grenadier Prussian style mitre with a blue bag (because of the great similarity of the Prussian and Swedish grenadiers, in the field the mitre was covered with a black wax cloth)
Neckstock black
Coat dark blue with 10 tin buttons down the front and 2 tin buttons in the small of the back
Collar saffron yellow
Shoulder Straps on the left shoulder with one tin button
Lapels none
Pockets on each side with 3 tin buttons each
Cuffs saffron yellow
Turnbacks saffron yellow
Waistcoat yellow
Breeches yellow
Gaiters white stocking with brown leather strap at knee
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt broad white leather shoulder-strap
Waistbelt white with brass buckle
Cartridge Box black
Bayonet Scabbard none
Scabbard black with brass fittings
Footgear black shoes with brass buckles


Troopers were armed with a sword and a musket. The bayonet was permanently fixed to the musket.

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:

  • a silver lace on the tricorne
  • brass buttons (smaller than those of officers)

NCOs carried halberds but no cane.

Officers

Officers wore a blue uniform (coat) with blue distinctives (collar, cuffs, turnbacks). They were further distinguished from privates by:

  • a gold lace on the tricorne
  • no turnbacks on the coat
  • a silver gorget
  • brass buttons
  • blue or black breeches (breeches of the same colour as those of the privates were also worn)

Horses were equipped with blue housing with a yellow border.

N.B.: contrarily to the custom in other armies, Swedish officers did not wear any sash

Musicians

Musicians usually wore a yellow coat with white swallow nests on the shoulders.

The drum had a brass barrel decorated with a gold lion holding two swords and surrounded by nine white roses. Rims were blue edged yellow.

Colours

The pikes used as staffs to carry the colours were always yellow. The Liffana had gold finials while the Kompanifana had steel finials. The colours measured 2.12 x 1.70 m. (1.81 x 1.33 m. as per Clifford).

Liffana (colonel flag): white field; centre device carried the crowned royal arms of Sweden flanked by 2 crowned golden lions; the corner of the first canton carried a gold lion holding two swords and surrounded by nine white roses.

N.B.: for the liffana, Clifford adds a pedestal supporting the arms, the letters “AFRS” above the arms and 1 royal crown in the corner of each of the 3 remaining cantons.

Kompanifana (ordonnance flag): red field; centre device was a yellow or gold lion holding two swords and surrounded by nine white roses; the whole surrounded by a green laurel wreath tied with a gold ribbon.

Liffana - Source: rf-figuren from a template by Hannoverdidi
Kompanifana - Source: rf-figuren from a template by Hannoverdidi

The colonel's battalion carried the Liffana and a Kompanifana. The lieutenant-colonel's battalion carried 2 Kompanifanor.

References

Großer Generalstab, Die Kriege Friedrichs des Großen - Dritter Teil: Der Siebenjährige Krieg 1756–1763. Vol. 6 Leuthen, Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II (Publisher), Berlin 1904, pp.92-107, Annex pp. 11-16

Höglund, Lars-Eric and Ake Sallnäs: The Great Northern War 1700-1721, Colours and Uniforms, Acedia Press, Karlstadt, 2000

Högman, Hans: Svenska regementen under indelningsverkets dagar (broken link...)

Pengel, R. D. and G. R. Hurt: Swedish Army in Pomerania – 1757-1763, Birmingham, 1983

Purky, Jim: Swedish Army Organization, Seven Years War Association Journal Vol. X No. 1

Säwe, Teofron: Sveriges deltagande i Sjuåriga Kriget Åren 1757-1762, Beijers Bokförlagsaktiebolag, Stockholm, 1915

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989

Schorr, Dan: Swedish Flags 1757-1762 - Part II Infantry Flags, The Courrier, March-April 1980

Schorr, Dan: Uniforms of the Swedish Army, 1757-1762, The Courrier, June-July 1979

Wilson, Peter: The Swedish Army in 1756, Seven Years War Association Journal Vol. X No. 1

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.