Origin and History
The regiment was raised in 1657 for Jobst Baron von Knigge.
In 1731, the regiment assumed garrison duty in Hungary, afterwards it was stationed in Vienna for a short time and returned to Hungary in 1737. The same year, Carl Count Saint-Ignon was appointed proprietor of the regiment.
In 1738 and 1739, the regiment fought against the Turks.
At the outbreak of the War of the Austrian Succession, in 1740, the regiment was attached to Field-Marshal Lobkowitz's Corps.
In 1742, Lobkowitz's Corps (7 cuirassier rgts, 3 dragoon rgts, 5 infantry rgts) operated independently, defending the big magazines at Iglau (present-day Jihlava/CZ). At the beginning of February, Lobkowitz was informed that a Franco-Saxon army was marching on Iglau. Lobkowitz retreated to Southern Bohemia with his entire corps. On May 25, the French under Maréchal de Broglie and Belleisle attacked Lobkowitz's Corps on the march near Zagaj  (present-day Zaháj/CZ). The Saint-Ignon Cuirassiers were at the end of the column and were not involved in the engagement. Lobkowitz then retreated to Budweis (present-day České Budějovice/CZ). After some days, 20,000 French under Belleisle threatened Budweis and Lobkowitz asked Prince Charles de Lorraine for help. In July, when Prussia retired its troops from Bohemia, the French tried to avoid a battle. From July 2, Saint-Ignon Cuirassiers were attached to the second line of the left wing under FML Karl Paul Pálffy. On July 6, Lobkowitz made a junction with the main army of Charles de Lorraine near Wodnian (present-day Vodňany/CZ). The regiment took its winter-quarters in Swabia.
On January 14 1744, Karl Marquis Canon de Ville was appointed colonel and commander of the regiment. In the Spring of 1744, the Austrian main army marched against France. From May 29 to 31, it passed the Neckar on 5 bridges. On May 31, the Saint-Ignon Cuirassiers, belonging to the seventh column passed the Neckar at Heilbronn. It's difficult to follow the next movements of the regiment.
During the campaign of 1745, the regiment was part of FML Berlichingen's Corps in the main army of Charles de Lorraine. The Austrian main army along with its new Saxon allies marched towards Silesia. On June 4, the regiment took part in the Battle of Hohenfriedeberg (present-day Dobromierz/PL) where it was deployed in the second line of the right wing. In the afternoon, this right wing was attacked by several Prussian cavalry regiments. The Austrian cavalry under Franz Saint-Ignon, supported by two dragoon regiments of the Reserve, repulsed the Prussians three times. After Franz Saint-Ignon was mortally wounded and Berlichingen captured, some of the Austrian regiments started to retreat. Charles de Lorraine led an attack at the head of the remaining squadrons. Count Barzizy from the Saint-Ignon Cuirassiers rescued Charles de Lorraine at the last moment, preventing his capture by the Prussians. By 9:00 a.m., the battle was decided. The Austrians retreated to Kuks in Bohemia. On September 30, the regiment took part in the Battle of Soor (present-day Ždˇár/CZ) where it was deployed in the second line of the right wing in a brgade led by FML Karl Saint-Ignon. The main combats took place on the left wing and the right wing don't seem to have been involved. Charles de Lorraine lost the battle, his defeated army retreated through Königshahn (present-day Královec/CZ) to Horschitz (present-day Hořice/CZ). The regiment took its winter-quarters around Turnau (present-day Turnov/CZ).
On the eve of the Seven Years' War, the regiment counted 6 squadrons and a company of carabiniers. For battles, the latter was usually converged with other similar companies to form an elite unit.
The successive regiment inhaber were:
- since 1719 to 1733: Locatelli
- from 1737: Carl Count Saint-Ignon
- from 1750: Georg Christian Baron von Kalkreuth
- from 1760 to 1768: Prince Albert Casimir Duke von Sachsen-Teschen
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:
- from January 14 1744: Karl Marquis Canon de Ville
- since 1757 until 1778: Jean-Baptiste Count Saint-Ignon
The regiment was disbanded in 1775.
Service during the War
In June 1756, at the beginning of the Seven Years' War, the regiment was stationed in Eastern Hungary and counted 795 men and 774 horses. On September 6, it was decided in a conference in Vienna to transfer the regiment to Bohemia.
On June 18 1757, during the Prussian invasion of Bohemia, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where it was deployed in the first line of the cavalry right wing under Count Serbelloni. On November 22, the regiment took part in the Battle of Breslau where it was deployed in Buccow's Brigade, in the first line of the cavalry left wing under Count Serbelloni. On December 5, at the Battle of Leuthen, the regiment was deployed in the Hohenzollern Brigade in the first line of the cavalry left wing under General Serbelloni.
In early June 1760, the regiment formed part of Loudon's Army of Silesia posted near Frankenstein. It was deployed in the first line of the right wing. On June 23, the regiment was at the Battle of Landeshut where it was detached, under Major-General Saint-Ignon, to move around the Prussian positions and cut the line of retreat. On August 15, the regiment took part in the Battle of Liegnitz where it was deployed in the first line of the right wing. On September 17, it was at the Combat of Hochgiersdorf. In October, as part of Loudon's Corps, the regiment was present at the unsuccessful Siege of Cosel.
On July 6 1762, the regiment took part in the Combat of Adelsbach.
|Coat||white with 18 brass buttons on the right side
|Waistcoat||red with a single row of brass buttons and 2 horizontal pockets (each with 3 brass buttons)|
Troopers were armed with a black breastplate (worn over the coat), a pallasch (sword) and a pair of pistols. Carabiniers also had a carbine and carried a sabre instead of a sword.
The Bautzener Bilderhandschrift of 1762 shows a lace on the tricorne, a red neckstock and 3 brass buttons on each cuff.
Raspe in 1762 shows only 13 buttons on the coat, 3 buttons on each cuff and 2 rows of buttons on the waistcoat. Brauer, Knötel and Donath follow Raspe.
The officers (according to the Bautzener Bilderhandschrift of 1762) wore the same uniform with the following exceptions:
- laced tricorne with a green and white cockade
- blue saddlecloth and sabretache both laced in red and fringed in yellow
The aprons of the trumpets were yellow with black cipher. No information has been found about the decoration of the kettledrums.
Leib Standard: white silk with a black and yellow flagpole, gold fringe, gold spearhead and red/gold ribbons
- Obverse: black double eagle
- Reverse: from 1760 arms of the Sachsen-Teschen
Regimental Standard: red silk with a black and yellow flagpole, silver spearhead and silver ribbons
- Obverse: silver double eagle
- Reverse: from 1760 arms of the Sachsen-Teschen
Bleckwenn, Hans: Die Regimenter der Kaiserin, Gedanken zur "Albertina Handschrift" 1762 des Heeresgeschichtlichen Museums Wien, Köln: 1967
Donath, Rudolf: Die Kaiserliche und Kaiserlich-Königliche Österreichische Armee 1618-1918, 2. Aufl., Simbach/Inn 1979, Teil III Blatt 5
Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Grosser Generalstab Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Part 3 Der siebenjährige Krieg 1756-1763, Vol. 1 Pirna und Lobositz, Berlin, 1901, Appendix 4
Knötel, Richard: Uniformkunde. Lose Blätter zur Geschichte der Entwicklung der militärischen Tracht, 18 Bde., Rathenow 1890-1919
Kornauth, Friedrich: Das Heer Maria Theresias: Faksimile-Ausgabe der Albertina-Handschrift, "Dessins des Uniformes des Troupes I.I. et R.R. de l'année 1762", Wien: 1973
Raspe: Accurate Vorstellung der sämtlichen Kayserlich Koeniglichen Armeen zur eigentlichen Kentnis 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: 1762
Schirmer, Friedrich: Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989
Thümmler, L.-H.: Die Österreichiches Armee im Siebenjährigen Krieg: Die Bautzener Bilderhandschrift aus dem Jahre 1762, Berlin 1993
Zahn, Michael: Oesterreichische Kürassier und Dragoner Standarten in Siebenjährigen Krieges, Zusammenstellung, 1988
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.