Bavarian Cuirassiers Standards
Only little is known about Bavarian cuirassier standards, but a few originals from 1700-1743 have survived and give some information about the design of the standards. It looks like Bavarian standards until 1743 were following the same general pattern. It is noticeable, that standards from the time of Carl Albrecht (1726-1745) look nearly identical with those from the time of Maximilian II Emanuel (1679-1726). Only the monogram was altered from EME to CA. During 1742-45, when Charles VII was Holy Roman Emperor, the standards were of imperial design. After 1745, when Francis I was elected Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, Bavarian standards had to be changed to electoral pattern again. But in fact, the Electoral Bavarian cavalry regiments still carried standards dated back to the time of Emperor Charles VII, bearing on one side the double-headed eagle of the Holy Roman Empire, and on the other the quartered Wittelsbach crest. We also can assume that standards issued before 1742, if they were in good condition, were still in use. This was common practise during that time to save expenses for new standards.
New standards, which were issued during the reign of Elector Maximilian III Joseph (1745-77), would have his monogram MJ. So it is very likely, that during the Seven Years' War standards of different design were in use.
The standards were rectangular in shape and made of damask silk. The field was richly embroidered, in each corner the cipher of the elector surmounted by an elector's hat. All four sides were heavily fringed. The staff was painted light blue.
Leibstandarte for the colonel´s company until 1743: white field
- obverse: centre device consisting of a shield bearing the Arms of Bavaria-Palatinate, surmounted by an elector's hat. The shield was surrounded by the Collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece and (since 1729) the Collar of the Order of St. George;
- reverse: centre device depicting a Patrona Bavariae of various designs, surrounded by rays.
Kompaniestandarten until 1743: light blue field
- obverse: allegoric scene, different for each company;
- reverse: centre device consisting of a shield bearing the Arms of Bavaria-Palatinate, surmounted by an elector's hat. The shield was surrounded by the Collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece and (since 1729) the Collar of the Order of St. George.
Leibstandarte for the colonel´s company from 1742 to 1745: white field (probably the same design as for a Leibguidon)
- obverse: centre device depicting the Holy Virgin with rays behind her head; she is standing on a globe; the globe is surrounded by a cloud
- reverse: centre device depicting the Imperial Eagle with the Arms of Bavaria-Palatinate on its breast; the arms were surrounded by the collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the collar of the Order of St. George
Bavarian Army Museum, Ingolstadt
Der Flaggenkurier 29/2009, Zeitschrift der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Flaggenkunde, May 2009
Kühlmann/ Papst: Geschichte der bayerischen Fahnen und Standarten mit den Feldzeichen der in Bayern aufgegangenen Staaten Vol. 1, München 1959
Pivka, Otto von and Richard Hook: Napoleon´s German Allies (4) Bavaria, Osprey Men at Arms Series No. 106, 1980
Wise, Terence and Guido Rosignoli: Flags of the Napoleonic Wars, Vol. 1, Osprey Men at Arms Series No. 77, 1978
Volker Scholz for the initial version of this article