Dunant Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years' War (Main Page) >> Armies >> Spanish Army >> Dunant Infantry

Origin and History

The regiment was raised in 1742 for the Spanish crown in the Swiss canton of St. Gall. It initially counted 3 battalions.

Contrarily to the Spanish infantry regiments, the Swiss regiments had no company of grenadiers. A corporal and 12 grenadiers being included into each company of the regiment. However, in case of need, it was possible to form an ad hoc company of grenadiers. For this purpose, a captain, a lieutenant and a sub-lieutenant of grenadiers were attached to each Swiss regiment.

In 1749, the regiment was reduced to a single battalion. In June of the same year, it was amalgamated with the Swiss regiment Schwyz to form a new regiment under the command of colonel Schwaller.

In 1755, this new regiment took the name of Antiguo de Reding, 3 companies of the new regiment still coming from the canton of St. Gall.

When the Swiss infantry was reorganised in 1756, all regiments were established at 2 battalions, of 4 companies each. This reorganisation was completed only in 1758.

In February 1758, the 3 companies originating from the canton of St. Gall formed the basis of the new Dunant regiment. In 1759, the regiment was quartered in Mataro, Tarragona, Tortosa, Villafranca del Penedés and Barcelona.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was under the command of:

  • since 1742 to June 1749: don Jorge Dunant
  • from June 1749 to 1758: Schwaller
  • from 1758 to 1772: Dunant

In 1772, the regiment took the name of its new colonel don Jorge Esdel baron of Thurn.

In 1798, the regiment was disbanded and its troops incorporated into regiment Rutiman.

Service during the War

No information available yet about the service of the regiment during the Seven Years' War

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1759 - Source: Ibrahim90
Uniform Details as per
the Album de Taccoli of 1759
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with a black cockade fastened with a white button
Grenadier black bearskins with a red (encarnado) flame
Neckstock white
Coat dark blue with white buttons arranged two by two on both sides
Collar encarnado
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets double vertical pockets with white buttons
Cuffs encarnado with 3 white buttons
Turnbacks encarnado probably with blue “heart-shaped” fastener
Waistcoat encarnado with white buttons
Breeches dark blue
Gaiters white
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather
Waistbelt natural leather
Cartridge Box natural leather
Bayonet Scabbard black
Scabbard brown


N.B.: Taccoli's plates clearly illustrate different shades of red used by the Spanish army. We have rendered the colour encarnado used by this regiment as Taccoli represent it in his plate. However, this is not a guarantee of accuracy since it depends entirely on Taccoli's interpretation and on plates which are now some 250 years old.

Armaments consisted of a musket, a bayonet and a sword (brass hilt).

Officers

The colonel, lieutenant-colonel, sargentos mayores and officers carried a spontoon and an officer stick. They used to hang this stick at the second button of the coat. The type of handle of the officer stick was different for each rank:

  • gold for the colonel
  • silver for the lieutenant-colonel
  • silver (but only one finger wide) for the Sargento Mayor and the captains
  • ivory for assistants, lieutenants and for the chaplain
  • wooden with a silver ring for sub-lieutenants

Sergeants carried a halberd instead of a spontoon. Furthermore, their officer stick had no handle.

Musicians

no information available yet

Colours

According to the regulation of 1749, the coronela (colonel flag) of each Swiss regiment was white and carried the royal arms in its centre (the arms of Charles III probably surrounded by the necklace of the order of the Toison de Oro).

The batallonas (ordonnance flags) of the regiment were blue with a red Burgundian cross terminated in each corner by 5 flames (yellow, white, blue, white, yellow).

Colonel Colour - Source: Richard Couture
Ordonnance Colour - Source: PMPdeL

References

Album de Taccoli, 1759

Ministerio de Defensa, El Ejército de Fernando VI, Madrid, 1993, pp. 134-143

Acknowledgment

Juan José Torres and the Asociación Cultural de Modelismo Histórico Alabarda for the information and counselling provided for this article.