Origin and History
The unit was raised as a single battalion on March 8 1693 under Colonel Adam Wilhelm von Sydow to serve in Hungary, from 1694 to 1697, against the Turks.
Soon after the beginning of the War of the Spanish Succession, in 1702, the unit was augmented to a full regiment. It was then placed in the Dutch service.
From 1713, the regiment was stationed in Pomerania. In 1714, it was officially incorporated into the Prussian Army.
From 1739, the regiment garrisoned Köslin and Rügenwalde. It levied its recruits in the Pomeranian districts of Schlawe and Stolp as well as in part of the Principality of Cammin and in the towns of Gollnow, Köslin, Rügenwalde and Stolp.
During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment was at the battles of Chotusitz (May 17 1742), Hohenfriedberg (June 4, 1745) and Soor (September 30, 1745), suffering heavy losses in the latter battle.
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:
- since July 20 1756 until May 23 1764: Gerd Heinrich von Manteuffel
The numbering system (Stammliste) was first used by Leopold I., Fürst von Anhalt-Dessau (Der alte Dessauer) in the Dessauer Spezifikation from 1737. Around 1780 the numbers were used in the printed Stammlisten, still with some variations for the fusilier regiments. It became official by "Cabinets-Ordre" from October 1, 1806. The present infantry regiment was attributed number 17.
The regiment was disbanded in 1806 after its capitulation Halle and Magdeburg.
Service during the War
On August 26 1756, when the Prussian army proceeded to the invasion of Saxony, the regiment was part of the left column led by the Duke of Bevern. This column, who had concentrated in the area of Lübben, then advanced through Lusatia by Hoyerswerda and Bautzen, to Hohenstein (Sept. 8) then to Lohmen north of the Elbe near Pirna. On October 1, the regiment took part in the Battle of Lobositz where it was assigned to the brigade of the Lieutenant-General von Bevern. During this battle, the regiment suffered heavy losses. On October 23, when Keith's Army left Lobositz to return to Pirna, the regiment was part of the left column. On October 28, Keith's Army reached Gross-Sedlitz near Pirna and took its winter quarters soon afterwards.
On May 6 1757, the regiment took part in the Battle of Prague where it was deployed on the right of the second line of the infantry centre in Kannacher's Brigade. It supported the breakthrough of the Prussian grenadiers near Kyge-Hlaupetin. On June 18, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where it was deployed in the first line of the infantry right wing under Bevern. On September 7, when an Austrian force under the command of General Nádasdy attacked Winterfeldt's isolated Prussian Corps in the Combat of Moys, the regiment was deployed in the first line of the centre under Major-Generals Wied and Kannacher. The regiment was part of the Prussian brigade under Kannacher who temporarily recaptured the Jäkelsberg.
In the Spring of 1758, the regiment took part in the invasion of Moravia. On August 4, during the retreat of the Prussian army after the failure of this invasion, the regiment escorted the train to Politz (present-day Police nad Metují). On October 14, it fought in the Battle of Hochkirch where it formed part of Retzow's Corps near Weissenberg.
On Saturday March 15 1760 at 5:00 a.m., the regiment along with a company of dragoons, left its winter-quarters and started his march towards Neisse under a very wet weather. Under the command of General Goltz, it escorted a considerable stock of baggage-wagons. The convoy was intercepted near Buchelsdorf by an Austrian force (5 cavalry rgts) led by Loudon. The regiment then formed a square around the baggage. This square resisted to three consecutive cavalry charges. The regiment then took the road again. Loudon tried again and again, probably six times, to attack the Prussian detachment between Siebenhufen and Steinau. Goltz lost only 18 wagons and some country carts. Near Steinau, Loudon gave it up as desperate and went his way after losing 300 men killed and 500 wounded while Manteuffel Infantry had lost 35 killed and above 100 left wounded or prisoners. On September 17, the regiment took part in the Combat of Hochgiersdorf where it was attached to the vanguard under Lieutenant-General von Forcade. On November 3, the regiment took part in the bloody Battle of Torgau where it distinguished itself, capturing 4 guns but suffering enormous losses (nearly 1,000 men killed or wounded).
On October 29 1762, at the end of the campaign of Saxony, the regiment took part in the Battle of Freiberg where it was deployed on the left wing under General Alt-Stutterheim who launched an attack on the right wing of the Austro-Imperial Army; the first battalion of the regiment participating in this attack while the second battalion protected the Prussian batteries.
N.B.: During the war the grenadiers from the wing grenadier companies were put together with the grenadiers of Infantry Regiment 22 forming the Grenadier Battallion 17/22 (please refer to this article for the details of the service of the grenadiers during the war).
The uniforms depicted in this section were introduced in 1741.
|Coat||Prussian blue lined red with 2 white/red striped braid loops with tassels under each lapel; 1 white/red striped braid loop with tassel on each side in the small of the back; 3 brass buttons on each side to fasten the skirts forming the turnbacks
|Waistcoat||white with horizontal pockets and brass buttons|
Privates were armed with a musket, a bayonet and a sabre with a curved blade.
NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of the privates with the following distinctions:
- tricorne with wide gold lace and black and white quartered pompoms
- golden lace loops with tassels on and below the lapels, in the small of the back and on cuffs
- gilt buttons
- no shoulder strap
- yellowish leather gloves
- black and white sabre tassel
NCOs were armed with a sabre and a brown (black after 1761) half-pikes measuring 10 Rhenish feet (3.06 m.) in the musketeer companies and 13 Rhenish feet (4.10 m.) in the grenadier companies (carried by the 3 most senior NCOs while other grenadier NCOs were armed with rifled muskets since 1744).
NCOs also carried canes (normally attached to a button at the top of the right front while carrying the half-pike).
The uniforms of the officers were very similar to those of the privates with the following exceptions:
- black tricorne laced with a thin gold lace (officers always wore tricornes notwithstanding if they were commanding musketeers, fusiliers or grenadiers)
- white neck stock
- 6 golden embroidery loops on each lapel and 2 golden buttonholes under each lapel
- 2 golden embroidery loops on each pocket
- 1 golden embroidery loop sidewise on each side in the small of the back
- 2 golden embroidery loops on the sleeve above each cuff
- gilt buttons
- no shoulder strap on the coat
- no turnbacks on the coat
- black and silver sash around the waist
Officers carried brown (black after 1761) spontoons measuring 7 ½ Rhenish feet (2.36 m.) and an officer stick.
The narrow and wide drummer laces were identical and consisted of a white braid embroidered with a yellow, blue and black elaborate pattern.
The uniforms of the drummers were similar to those of the privates but had much more elaborate lacing and other peculiarities:
- no shoulder strap
- 5 vertical narrow drummer laces on each shoulder
- coat bordered with the narrow drummer lace
- lapels bordered with the narrow drummer lace
- all buttonholes laced with the narrow drummer lace
- each sleeve decorated with 8 horizontal narrow drummer laces with tassels bordered by 2 vertical wide laces, one on each side
Colonel colour (Leibfahne): White field with crimson corner wedges. Centre device consisting of a crimson medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a white scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, FR ciphers) and grenades in gold.
Regimental colours (Kompaniefahnen): Crimson field with white corner wedges. Centre device consisting of a white medallion surrounded by a golden laurel wreath and surmounted by a gold crown. The medallion is decorated with a black eagle holding a sword and lightning bolts surmounted by a crimson scroll bearing the golden motto "Pro Gloria et Patria". Corner monograms (crowns, laurel wreaths, FR ciphers) and grenades in gold.
The pikes used as staffs for the colours were brown (black after 1761).
Anonymous (maybe Karl Wellner), Montierung des Königlich Preussischen Armee
Bleckwenn, Hans, Die Uniformen der Preußischen Infanterie 1753-1786, Teil III/Bd. 3, Osnabrück 1973
Bleckwenn, Hans, Die friderzianischen Uniformen 1753-1786, Bd. I Infanterie I, Osnabrück 1984
Deutsche Uniformen, Bd. 1, Das Zeitalter Friedrich des Großen, 240 images of Herbert Knötel d. J., Text and explanations by Dr. Martin Letzius, published by Sturm-Zigaretten GmbH, Dresden: 1932
Die Bewaffnung und Ausrüstung der Armee Friedrichs des Großen: Eine Dokumentation aus Anlaß seines 200. Todesjahres, 2 erw. Auflage, Raststatt 1986
Engelmann, Joachim and Günter Dorn, Die Infanterie-Regimenter Friedrich des Grossen, Podzun-Pallas, 2000
Funcken, Liliane and Fred, Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Guddat, Martin; Grenadiere, Musketiere, Füsiliere: Die Infanterie Friedrichs des Großen, Herford 1986
Hohrath, Daniel: The Uniforms of the Prussian Army under Frederick the Great from 1740 to 1786; Vol. 2; Verlag Militaria, Vienna: 2011, pp. 150-155
Menzel, Adolph von, Die Armee Friedrich's des Großen, Berlin: 1851/57
Schirmer, Friedrich; Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, published by KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, Neuauflage 1989
Summerfield, Stephen: Prussian Musketeers of the War of the Austrian Succession and Seven Years War: Uniforms, Organisation and Equipement of Musketeer Regiments, Ken Trotman Publishing: Huntingdon, 2012, pp. 181-186
Tressenmusterbuch von 1755
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.