Gilten Cavalry

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Origin and History

The regiment was raised in 1705.

During the Seven Years' War, the regimental inhabers were:

  • since 1748: von Pöllnitz
  • from 1756: von Gilten
  • from 1758: von Breidenbach
  • from 1759: A.D. von Veltheim
  • from 1761: C.A. von Veltheim

The regiment was disbanded in 1803.

Service during the War

On June 26 1757, during the French invasion of Hanover, the regiment took part in the battle of Hastenbeck where it fought in the centre of the second line. The cavalry was not really tested in this battle. It was superbly mounted but drilled in the old German style tactics that meant that they were steady, but slow. They would have charged at a trot and quite likely would have received an enemy charge at the halt placing their trust in their firearms.

On May 26 1758, the regiment was with Ferdinand's main force in the camp of Nottuln. On May 31, it accompanied Ferdinand in his offensive on the west bank of the Rhine. On June 12, during the aborted attack on the French positions at Rheinberg, the regiment was in Spörcken's (second) column of attack. On June 23, the regiment took part in the battle of Krefeld where it was deployed on the left wing under the command of Lieutenant-general von Spörcken.

In June 1759, the regiment was part of the Allied Main Army under the command of the Duke Ferdinand of Brunswick. On August 1, it was present at the battle of Minden in the second line of the cavalry right wing commanded by Lord Sackville whose deliberate inactivity kept the unit out of any serious action.

On February 15 1761, the regiment took part in the combat of Langensalza. On February 19, Luckner's Corps, reinforced with 4 sqns (this regiment along with Alt-Bremer Cavalry), attacked the barricaded bridge at Vacha, drove back the defenders and made itself master of the town, forcing Stainville to retire from this town.

By May 23 1762, the regiment served in Granby's Corps which formed the left wing of the Allied Army towards Dörnberg. On June 24, still part of Granby's Corps, it fought at the battle of Wilhelmsthal.

Uniform

Accurate Vorstellung der saemtlichen Churfürstl. hannöverischen Armee zur eigentlichen Kentniß der Uniform von jedem Regimente nebst beygefügter Geschichte, worinne von der Stiftung, denen Chefs, der Staercke und den wichtigsten Thaten jedes Regiments Nachricht gegeben wird Nürnberg: Raspe 1763 (Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Sachsen-Anhalt)

Privates

Uniform in 1761 - Source: Hannoverdidi
Uniform Details
Headgear black tricorne laced white with oak leaves as a field sign, a black cockade and light blue small bobs on the hat
Neckstock black
Coat white with 7 (or 9) pewter buttons on the right side and 1 pewter button on each side at the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulderknot none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal, each with 3 pewter buttons
Cuffs medium blue, each with 3 pewter buttons
Turnbacks medium blue fastened with a small pewter button
Waistcoat straw
Breeches chamois
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt buff
Waistbelt buff
Cartridge Box black
Scabbard black
Footgear black
Horse Furniture
Saddlecloth basic color medium blue; border from inner edge out red-yellow-red line, part discs yellow-red-yellow, wavy line checked dark blue/white, part discs red-yellow-red, yellow-red-yellow line; emblem Royal monogram in white above a gold crown with red cushions; blue and white girth
Sabretache see saddlecloth
Blanket roll medium blue


Troopers were armed with a Pallasch (straight steel hilted sword), two pistols and a carbine. The carbine was slung from the shoulder belt on a swivel hook.

Officers

Officers wore a yellow silken sash around the waist; a silver gorget, a silver porte-epee; silver lace on the tricorne; silver lace around the collar and cuffs. They did not carry any cross-belt.

NCOs

NCO had silver laces on the cuffs, pockets, and waistcoat. They did not carry any cross-belt.

Musicians

Musicians comprised trumpeters and one kettle-drummer. They were dressed in reverse colours and probably had swallow nests at the shoulders. Staff trumpeter probably carried NCO distinctives.

The kettle-drums were made of copper.

The kettle-drum apron and trumpet banners were white, probably fringed in silver, and carried the Springing White Horse on a red ground within the Garter; the motto “NEC ASPERA TERRENT” underneath.

Colours

Standards

The regiment carried one Leibstandarte and one regimental standard.

Colonel Standard (Leibstandarte): white field , there is no mention of the colour of the fringe and embroideries, here we assume them to be silver to fit with the colour of the buttons of the uniform:

  • obverse: centre device consisting of the White Horse on a red ground within the Garter with the motto “NEC ASPERA TERRENT” underneath
  • reverse: centre device consisting of the golden initials “GR” on a red ground within the Garter; motto “NEC ASPERA TERRENT” underneath
Leib Standard – Source: rf-figuren

Regimental Standard: probably blue field, there is no mention of the colour of the fringe and embroideries, here we assume them to be silver to fit with the colour of the buttons of the uniform:

  • obverse: centre device consisting of a White Horse on a red ground within the Garter; the motto “NEC ASPERA TERRENT” underneath
  • reverse: centre device consisting of an armed Lion Rampant; the motto “IN PACE AD BELLUM PARATUS” above
Regimental Standard – Source: rf-figuren

References

Deutsche Uniformen, Bd. 1, Das Zeitalter Friedrich des Großen, 240 Bilder von Herbert Knötel d. J., Text und Erläuterungen von Dr. Martin Letzius, hrsg. von der Sturm-Zigaretten GmbH, Dresden 1932

Knötel, R.: Farbiges Handbuch der Uniformkunde: Die Entwicklung der militärischen Tracht der deutschen Staaten, Österreich-Ungarns und der Schweiz. Begründet von Prof. Richard Knötel. Grundlegend überarbeitet und bis zum Stand von 1937 fortgeführt von Herbert Knötel d.J. und Herbert Sieg. Dem Stand der Forschung angepaßt und ergänzt von Ingo Pröper, überarbeitete Neuauflage, Stuttgart 1985

Knötel, Richard: Die Uniformen des Hannoverschen Heeres 1763 und 1770. Part I : Das Heer von 1763, in: Mitteilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht, vol. XVI, no. 1-4 (1909), page 3-15

Knötel, Richard: Die Uniformen des Hannoverschen Heeres 1763 und 1770. Part II: Das Heer von 1770, in: Mitteilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht, vol. XVI, no. 4-5 (1909), page 15-20

Knötel, Richard: Die Uniformen des Hannoverschen Heeres 1763 und 1770. Kurze Stammliste. 1617 bis 1803, in: Mitteilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht, vol. XVI, no. 6-11 (1909), page 22-42

Lawson, Cecil C. P., A History of the Uniforms of the British Army - from the Beginnings to 1760, vol. II

Manley, S., Uniforms of the Danish and German States' Armies 1739 - 1748, Potsdam Publications

Niemeyer Joachim, Ortenburg Georg: Die Chur-braunschweig-lüneburgische Armee im Siebenjährigen Kriege: Das Gmundener Prachtwerk, Beckum 1976

Pengel & Hurt, German States in the Seven Years War 1740 to 1762, Imperial Press

Pengel, R.D, Hurt G.R.: Seven Years War. Brunswick-Luneburg (Hanover). Hessen Cassel. Brunswick-Wolfenbuttel. Schaumburg Lippe. Supplement, Birmingham 1984

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989

Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Uniformierung der kurhannoverschen Infanterie 1714 - 1803 in: Zeitschrift für Heereskunde, 1970

Schirmer, Friedrich: Nec Aspera Terrent: Eine Heereskunde der hannoverschen Armee von 1631 bis 1803, Niedersächische Hausbücherei, Bd. 3, Hannover 1929

Sichart, Louis von: Geschichte der Königlich-Hannoverschen Armee. Dritter Band. Vierter Zeitraum. 1756-1789, Hanover 1870 [google books]

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