Royal Lorraine Infanterie

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> French Army >> Royal Lorraine Infanterie

Origin and History

During the War of the Austrian Succession, a first regiment named Royal Lorraine was created on January 30 1744 from the militia of the Province of Lorraine. In 1746, it served on the Rhine and at Fribourg before being transferred to Italy. In 1747, it was stationed at Nice in Provence.

This first regiment was disbanded on December 31 1754. However, during the Seven Years' War, the regiment was re-established on March 20 1757 from the militia battalions of Mirecourt and Neufchâteau in Lorraine.

This new regiment counted only one battalion.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment ranked 104th, it was under the command of:

  • since March 20 1757: Chaumont de la Galaisière de Mareil
  • from 1761: Chevalier de Hantoy

The regiment was disbanded on November 25 1762.

Service during the War

Somewhere between August 23 and September 6 1757, the regiment joined the Army of Saxony, led by the Prince de Soubise, in the area of Erfurt and Eisenach. On September 27, it was brigaded with Royal Barrois Infanterie and Beauvoisis Infanterie under M. de Rivray in the first line of the left wing of the Franco-Imperial Army. However, the regiment did not take part in the Battle of Rossbach. At the end of the year, it took its winter quarters in Witzenhausen in Hessen.

N.B.: Pajol pretends that the regiment was present at Rossbach.

In April 1758, when the Comte de Clermont redeployed his army along the Rhine, the regiment was placed in the second line at Kaster and Pfaffendorf. After the successful crossing of the Rhine by the Allied Army of Ferdinand of Brunswick on May 31, the regiment retired towards Rheinberg where it joined Clermont's Army on June 2. It remained in this camp, where it was placed in the centre of the second line, until June 12. On August 5, the regiment formed part of Chevert's Corps and took part in the Combat of Mehr where it was brigaded with Brancas Infanterie and distinguished itself, its brigade being the last one to retire from the battlefield. In Mid August, after Ferdinand's retreat to the east bank of the Rhine, the regiment, as part of the Army of the Lower Rhine now under Contades, recrossed the Rhine to follow the Allied Army. On August 20, it was encamped near Wesel where it was placed in the centre of the second line.

On July 13 1759, during the French offensive in western Germany, the regiment was part of a corps, under M. de Beaupréau, sent forward by Contades to Eidinghausen near Gohfeld to support Broglie at Minden. On July 14, this corps passed the Weser and marched to the French camp near Minden where it replaced Broglie's Reserve.

Uniform

The following description has been verified against the manuscript "Troupes du Roi, Infanterie française et étrangère, année 1757, tome I" and Taccoli's book published in 1760.

N.B.: for this regiment the manuscript of 1757 illustrates a uniform completely different from the one described in the various Etats Militaires. In fact it described the uniform which would theoretically be issued only in 1761!

Privates

Uniform in 1758 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details as per
Etrennes Militaires 1758, Abrégé du Dictionnaire Militaire 1759
Etat Militaire 1760 and Etat militaire 1761

completed where necessary as per Taccoli's plate
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced silver with a black cockade (white as per Taccoli)
Grenadier black tricorne laced silver with a black cockade

towards 1759, bearskins became increasingly common among grenadiers of the French Army

Neckstock black
Coat white lined white with pewter buttons down to the waist on the right side
Collar yellow
Shoulder Straps n/a
Lapels none (black in 1761)
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 pewter buttons

in 1761: double vertical pockets (3 yellow buttons on each single pocket)

Cuffs yellow, each with 3 pewter buttons (white with 3 yellow buttons in 1761)
Turnbacks none but the skirts of the coat could easily be turned back for action, thus exposing the lining
Waistcoat white with one row of small pewter buttons
Breeches white
Gaiters white
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather (white as per Taccoli)
Waistbelt natural leather (white as per Taccoli)
Cartridge Box natural leather
Bayonet Scabbard black with a white metal tip
Scabbard n/a


Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet. Fusiliers carried a sword (brass hilt) while the grenadiers had a sabre.

Officers

n/a

Musicians

The drummers of the regiment wore the Royal Livery: blue coat lined red; red cuffs, waistcoat and breeches; laced with the braid of the small Royal Livery.

Drummer wearing the Royal Livery - Source: Jocelyne Chevanelle

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

French Royal Livery - Source: reconstruction based on a sample from Jean-Louis Vial's collection


Colours

Colonel colour: white with a white cross.

N.B.: the manuscript of 1757 describes a white colonel colour carrying a St. Andrew cross decorated with golden fleurs de lys similar to the ordonnance colours.

Ordonnance colours: a white S. Andrew cross with yellow and black opposed cantons. The St. Andrew cross had a golden fleur de lys in its centre and 9 smaller golden fleurs de lys in each of its branch.

Colonel Colour - Source: Kronoskaf
Ordonnance Colour - Source: Kronoskaf

References

Anon.: Manuscript Troupes du Roi, Infanterie française et étrangère, année 1757, tome I, Musée de l'Armée, Paris

Menguy, Patrice: Les Sujets du Bien Aimé (a website who has unfortunately disappeared from the web)

Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891

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

Taccoli, Alfonso: Teatro Militare dell' Europa, Part 1, vol. 2; Madrid, March 1760

Vial, J. L.: Nec Pluribus Impar

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