Grenadierbataillon Kurprinzessin

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> Saxon Army >> Grenadierbataillon Kurprinzessin

Origin and History

Grenadier of the Grenadierbataillon Kurprinzessin in 1756 - Copyright: Franco Saudelli

The regiment was formed in 1748 from the grenadier companies of the 4 disbanded regiments of 2nd Garde, Jasmund, Allnbeck and Bellegarde. It initially consisted of 8 companies and was entitled a Grenadierbataillon. In 1749, it was reduced to 5 companies.

In 1756, the regiment was taken prisoner at Pirna.

In 1757, the regiment was reformed in Hungary. It consisted of 2 battalions raised among the rallied Referenten (troops who had deserted the Prussian army) and new recruits drawn from Bavaria. It served with the Saxon auxiliary corps with the French armies in all campaigns.

In 1763, the regiment was converted into a regiment of musketeers with 3 battalions in 14 companies, though, the regiment retained its grenadier sabres and the privilege to play the Grenadiermarsch. In 1778, it reduced to 2 battalions in 10 companies.

Seven Years' War Organisation

In 1756, the regiment consisted of 5 grenadier companies or 539 men. In 1757, it counted 8 companies formed in 2 battalions, as part of the Saxon auxiliary corps in the French service.

Chef of the regiment:

  • 1748: Major-general Count Entremont de Bellegarde
  • 1750: received the name Kurprinzessin (Princess Elector)

Kommandeur of the regiment:

  • 1750: Colonel von Klingenberg
  • 1756: Colonel von Flemming (became general inspector of the infantry in 1768)


Service during the War

At the end of August 1756, when Frederick II proceeded to the invasion of Saxony, the battalion retired to Pirna with the rest of the Saxon army. At Pirna, the battalion was deployed on the right wing as part of von Crousaz's 1st Grenadier Brigade. The Prussians blockaded the Saxon army in Pirna from September 9 until October 15 when the Saxons finally had to surrender. The regiment was forcefully incorporated into the Prussian Army. However, since the grenadiers refused to take the oath to the King of Prussia, the regiment was not simply converted into a Prussian regiment. Its grenadiers were rather distributed among the Prussian infantry regiments.

In 1758, to avoid further contact with the Prussians, the reformed regiment marched through southern Germany and assembled in Strasbourg by July. On September 3 1758, it was part of the Saxon contingent, under the command of Prince Xaver, who encamped at Castrop, 15 km from Recklinghausen, on his way to make a junction with the French army of the Marquis de Contades in Westphalia. The contingent made this junction around mid-September. As part of Chevert's corps, it reinforced Soubise's army in Hessen. On October 10 1758, it first saw action at the battle of Lutterberg where its determined attacks decided the day for the French army. On October 20, the Saxon regiments rejoined Contades at Werl.

On April 13 1759, the regiment took part in the battle of Bergen where it formed part of the first line of the left wing under the command of the Baron de Dyherrn. In June, during the French offensive in western Germany, the regiment was part of the main army under the command of the Marquis de Contades where it was deployed in the second line of the infantry centre. On August 1, the regiment took part in the battle of Minden where it was deployed in the second line of the infantry left wing under the command of the Comte de Lusace.

To do: description of the actions of the regiment from 1760 to 1763.

Uniform

Besides the uniform worn at the beginning of the war in 1756 and after the capitulation of Pirna, the new regiments were re-dressed with white uniforms from Austrian depots, just adapting the distinctive colors. Because of the difference between Autrian and Saxon color pigments, the distinctive colors have perhaps changed a little bit (medium blue instead of light blue ?).

Privates

Uniforms - Source: Hannoverdidi
Uniform Details
Headgear
Musketeer Prussian style fusilier mitre cap in black leather with brass metal ornaments and a brass front plate
Grenadier in 1756: mitre (Prussian style) with a silver front plate and a light blue "bleu mourant" headband, light blue "bleu mourant" sack with white piping, white pompom on a white round base.

black tricorne laced white between 1757 and 1760

from 1761: black fur bearskin (French style) with a white metal plate with the electoral crest; falling from the rear of the bearskin were white woolen cords and tassels, the latter with the inner part in mid blue

Neckstock red
Coat white with a brass button in the small of the back and 3 brass buttons at waist level (right side only)
Collar light blue "bleu mourant"
Shoulder Straps white fastened with a small silver button
Lapels light blue "bleu mourant" with 8 (4x2) silver buttons
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 silver buttons
Cuffs light blue "bleu mourant", each with 3 vertical silver buttons
Turnbacks light blue "bleu mourant" fastened with a silver button
Waistcoat light blue "bleu mourant" with horizontal pockets with 3 silver buttons and lapels with silver buttons
Breeches white
Gaiters black
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt white
Waistbelt white
Cartridge Box black
Bayonet Scabbard brown
Scabbard black with brass fittings
Footgear black shoes


Troopers were armed with a musket, a bayonet and a sword.

Officers

Officers and NCOs wore a black tricorne laced silver with a white cockade.

From 1761, officers of the grenadier companies wore black fur bearskin (Austrian style) with a gilt plate with the electoral crest; falling from the rear of the bearskin were golden cords and tassels while NCOs of grenadier companies wore bearskins identical to those of the grenadiers.

Officers wore blue breeches.

Musicians

no information available yet

Colours

Leibfahne: white field. In the centre an ermine mantel backed light blue, crowned with a royal gold crown. On the mantelgold, four shields wearing the Polish arms (white knight and horse on a red field), the arms of Saxony (white eagle on a red field), the royal "AR" in gold on a light blue field, two crossed crimson swords on a field of black over white and a lime green crown on a black and yellow stripe field. A flaming grenade in each corner. A richly designed border in the distinctive color (light blue = bleu mourant) with a red piping.

Ordinarfahne: light blue (bleu mourant) field. In the centre an ermine mantel backed light blue, crowned with a royal gold crown. On the mantelgold, four shields wearing the Polish arms (white knight and horse on a red field), the arms of Saxony (white eagle on a red field), the royal "AR" in gold on a light blue field, two crossed crimson swords on a field of black over white and a lime green crown on a black and yellow stripe field. A flaming grenade in each corner. A richly designed border in red with a white piping.

Leibfahne - Source: Frédéric Aubert
Ordinarfahne - Source: Frédéric Aubert

References

Friedrich, Wolfgang, Die Uniformen der kurfürstlich Sächischen Armee 1683-1763, Dresden 1998

Geschichte des Koeniglische Saechsische 6. Infanterie-Regiments No 105, Leipzig, 1887. p. 418

Müller, Reinhold, Die Armee Augusts des Starken: Das Sächische Heer von 1730-1733, Berlin 1984

Origin and History: editors translation from "Geschichte und gegenwärtiger Zustand der Kursächsischen Armee." (History and present state of the Saxon Army.) 2nd edition, part IX, Dresden 1793.

Rogge, Christian, The French & Allied Armies in Germany during the Seven Years War, Frankfurt, 2006

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

Wagner, Siegbert, Die Uniformen des kursächischen Armee im Jahre 1745, unpublished manuscript, Hannover 1979

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