Varell Infantry

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Origin and History

Uniform in 1782 - Source: Illustration by Raspe, Nürnberg 1782

The regiment had two battalions each with 6 musketeer companies and 1 grenadier company, two 3-pdr guns and an authorised strength of 1,940 men.

In August 1757, the regiment had an effective strength of 1,399 men; in May 1758 of 1,720 men.

The regiment consisted of:

  • 1st grenadier coy: 100 men of the Bishopric of Eichstädt
  • 2nd grenadier coy: 100 men of the Margraviate of Brandenburg-Bayreuth and Kulmbach
  • Leib-coy: 145 men of the Bishopric of Würzburg
  • Coy von Oelhafen: 145 men of the Imperial City of Nuremberg
  • Coy von Löwenstein: 82 men of the County of Löwenstein-Wertheim; 59 men of the County of Erbach; 2 men of the Bishopric of Würzburg; 2 men of the County of Schönborn
  • Coy von Tettenborn: 103 men of the County of Hohenlohe-Waldenburg; 42 men of the County of Nostiz-Rieneck
  • Coy Schertel von Burtenbach: 145 men of the Bishopric of Würzburg
  • Coy Bischof: 74 men of the Ruler of Schwarzenberg; 1 man of the County of Schönborn; 26 men of the Imperial City of Nuremberg; 44 men of the Imperial City of Windsheim
  • Coy von Knörringen: 119 men of the Bishopric of Bamberg; 23 men of Schmalkalden; 2 men of Sachsen-Weimar; 1 man of the County of Schönborn
  • Coy Schreiber: 145 men of the Imperial City of Nuremberg
  • Coy Count Salm-Grundbach: 92 men of the County of Limburg; 21 men of Sachsen-Gotha; 28 men of Sachsen-Weimar; 4 men of the Imperial City of Rothenburg o.d. Tauber
  • Coy von Rüd: 145 men of the Bishopric of Würzburg
  • Coy von Peterneck: 93 men of the Teutonic Order; 4 men of Sachsen-Meiningen and Hildburghausen; 3 men of the Electorate of Saxony; 45 men of Weißenburg
  • Coy von Haller: 145 men of the Imperial City of Nuremberg

The regiment was raised in 1682. The successive regimental Inhaber were:

  • since 1682: Philipp Heinrich von Andlau
  • from 1684: Georg Eberhard von Heddesdorf
  • from 1693: Johann Andreas von Schnäbelin
  • from 1705: Johann Emmeram Emerich von Helmstätt
  • from 1720: Count Hermann Friedrich von Hohenzollern
  • from 1723: Franz Friedrich Moeck
  • from 1725: vacant
  • from 1729: Johann Wilhelm von Tastungen
  • from 1734: Johann Sebastian Haller von Hallerstein
  • from 1745 to 1751: Johann von Zehe
  • from 1752: Georg Adam von Varell
  • from 1765 to 1779: Georg Christoph Oelhafen von Schöllenbach
  • from 1780 to 1793: Anton Eberhard Schertel von Burtenbach

The regiment took part in the following campaigns:

  • War of the Holy League (1683 relief of Vienna, 1685, 1687, 1688 in Hungary)
  • War of the League of Augsburg (1689-97 on the Rhine)
  • War of the Spanish Succession (1702-14 on the Rhine)
  • War of the Polish Succession (1733-35 on the Rhine)

During the Seven Years' War the regiment was commanded by Colonel von Oelshafen.

Service during the War

In 1757, the regiment was with the Reichsarmee operating in Thuringia and Saxony. In August, this army combined with a French contingent under the Prince de Soubise to form the Franco-Imperial Army for the planned reconquest of Saxony. Soubise rated the various units of the Reichsarmee, considering the present regiment as "poor". On November 5 1757, the regiment took part in the Battle of Rossbach.

By mid-August 1759, during the Austro-Imperial campaign in Saxony, the regiment was attached to Zweibrücken's Corps. On September 21, it probably took part in the Combat of Korbitz where it would have been deployed in Stolberg's Division.

To do: campaigns from 1760 to 1762

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1756 - Source: Ibrahim90
Uniform Details as per the Verordnung des löblichen fränkischen Kreises...
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with a white-blue-sulfur yellow pompoms
Grenadier 1st grenadier coy (Eichstädt): Austrian style grenadier cap with brown fur, golden front plate and sulfur yellow bag,

2nd grenadier coy (Bayreuth): Prussian style grenadier cap with yellow front plate, red bag, yellow headband, yellow piping and white pompom.

Neckstock black or red
Coat dark blue in Prussian cut
Collar sulfur yellow
Shoulder Straps sulfur yellow
Lapels sulfur yellow with white buttons arranged 2-2-2, 3 white buttons below the lapels
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 white buttons
Cuffs sulfur yellow, each with 3 white buttons
Turnbacks sulfur yellow (1781 red)
Waistcoat white (maybe sulfur yellow in the early years)
Breeches white
Gaiters black
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt white
Waistbelt white
Cartridge Box black
Scabbard brown
Footgear black


Troopers were armed with a brown musket and a sword.

Officers

Officers wore a black tricorne laced silver with a black cockade with metallic clip. Partly silver Ringkragen (gorget) with gold. Sash and sword knot silver with black and red. Silver aiguillette, partisan with fringes, scabbard brown with gold.

Musicians

Drummers (and NCO's) wore initially vests in sulfur yellow later white, swallow nest white.

The colour of the drums was sulfur yellow with yellow-blue stripes.

Colours

As per Roider, the colours depicted hereafter had been issued at the outbreak of the Seven Years' War. However, for religious reasons, they were never handed out to the regiments. In Germany it was customary that the colours were nailed to the staff with additional religious symbols. As the regiment comprised Protestants as well as Catholics there was a grave dispute between them. So the regiment retained its old colours for which, besides the fact that their distinctive colour was blue, we found no description.

The regiment had six colours including one Leibfahne (Colonel Colour). The black and white (curled pattern) flagpoles had a golden finial.

Colonel Colour: white field

  • reverse: centre device consisting of the golden monogram "FC";
  • obverse: centre device consisting of a black double eagle with golden beak, crest and claw holding a sword with golden hilt in the right claw and a blue orb with a golden cross in the left claw. A red lined golden crown above the eagle.
Franconian Leibfahne – Source: PMPdeL

Regimental Colours: sulfur yellow field with a blue horizontal stripe

  • reverse: centre device consisting of the golden monogram "FC";
  • obverse: centre device consisting of a black double eagle with golden beak, crest and claw holding a sword with golden hilt in the right claw and a blue orb with golden cross in the left claw. A red lined golden crown above the eagle.
Regimental Colour – Source: PMPdeL

References

  • Becher, Johann Christian: Wahrhaftige Nachricht derer Begebenheiten, so sich in dem Herzogthum Weimar by dem gewaltigen Kriege Friedrichs II., Königs von Preußen, mit der Königin von Ungarn, Marien Theresen, samt ihren Bundesgenossen zugetragen, Weimar, ca. 1757-1760
    • Original (Stiftung Weimarer Klassik - Herzogin Anna Amalia Bibliothek Weimar)
    • Copy (Bibliothèque nationale de France, De Ridder collection)
  • Bleckwenn, Hans: Reiter, Husaren und Grenadiere - die Uniformen der kaiserlichen Armee am Rhein 1734, Dortmund 1979
  • Boehm, E.; Rottgardt, D.: Die Reichsarmee 1757-63. I. Teil: Zusammensetzung und Organisation, KLIO-Arbeitsgruppe 7jähriger Krieg, Friderzianische Epoche, Manuskript, o.J.
  • Boehm, E.; Rottgardt, D.; Weirich, W.-D.: Die Reichsarmee 1757-63. II. Teil: Die einzelnen Einheiten, ihre Stärke, Zusammensetzung, Uniform und Feldzeichen, KLIO-Arbeitsgruppe 7jähriger Krieg, Friderzianische Epoche, Manuskript, o.J.
  • Brauer, Hans M.; Knötel, Herbert d.J.: Heer und Tradition / Heeres-Uniformbogen, Berlin 1926-1962, Uniformbogen Nr. 11, Die Reichsarmee 1756-63, die Regtr. des Fränk. Kreises
  • Deutsche Uniformen, Vol. 1, Das Zeitalter Friedrich des Großen, 240 images from Herbert Knötel d. J., text and explanations from dr. Martin Letzius, published by Sturm-Zigaretten GmbH, Dresden, 1932
  • Helmes, Hermann: Übersicht zur Geschichte der fränkischen Kreistruppen 1664-1714, in: Darstellungen aus der Bayerischen Kriegs- und Heeresgeschichte, hrsg. vom K.B. Kriegsarchiv, No. 14, München 1905, pp. I-VIII and 1-70
  • Helmes, Hermann: Kurze Geschichte der fränkischen Kreistruppen 1714-1756 und ihre Teilnahme am Feldzuge von Roßbach 1757, in: Darstellungen aus der Bayerischen Kriegs- und Heeresgeschichte, hrsg. vom K.B. Kriegsarchiv, No. 16, München 1907, pp. I-VIII and 1-116
  • Helmes, Hermann: Die fränkischen Kreistruppen im Kriegsjahre 1758 und im Frühjahrsfeldzug 1759, in: Darstellungen aus der Bayerischen Kriegs- und Heeresgeschichte, hrsg. vom K.B. Kriegsarchiv, No. 17, München 1908, pp. I-VIII and 137-216
  • Knötel, Richard: 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: Uniformkunde, Lose Blätter zur Geschichte der Entwicklung der militärischen Tracht, Rathenow 1890-1921, vol. VI, plate 6. Fränkischer Kreis. Die Truppen des Fränkischen Kreises 1781.
  • Koch, A. Ulrich: Die Reichsarmee VIII: Die Uniformierung der drei Infanterie-Regimenter des Fränkischen Kreises 1735. in: Zeitschrift für Heereskunde, vol. XXXIX, (1975) no. 260/261, pp. 145-153
  • Kühlmann, Hermann: Kurze Geschichte der fränkischen Kreistruppen und ihrer Feldzeichen, in: Die Zinnfigur, Neue Folge, vol. 9 (1960), no. 6, pp. 88-91 and no. 7, pp. 100-101
  • Muhsfeldt, Th.: Ueber die Truppen des Fränkischen Kreises, in: Mittheilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht. Beilagen zum VI. Bande der "Uniformkunde", hrsg. von Richard Knötel (1885), No. 2, pp. 5-6, No. 3, pp. 9-11 and No. 4, p. 13
  • Muhsfeldt, Th.: Einige Angaben über die Reichsarmee vom Jahre 1757, in: Mittheilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht. Beilagen zum IX. Bande der "Uniformkunde", hrsg. von Richard Knötel (1889), No. 4, pp. 15-16 and No. 5, pp. 17-20
  • Roider, Klaus: Die fränkischen Kreistruppen im Siebenjährigen Krieg, 2009
  • Soden, Karl baron von: Nachricht von den Fränkischen Craistruppen. Nebst einem Anhang von den Schwäbischen Creisregimentern, Nürnberg, by Gabriel Nicolaus Raspe, 1782
  • Tessin, Georg: Die Inhaber der Fränkischen und Schwäbischen Kreisregimenter, in: Zeitschrift für Heereskunde, vol. IL, (1985), No. 319, Mai/Juni, pp. 81-83
  • Verordnung des löblichen fränkischen Kreises, wonach dessen Regimneter zu Ross und zu Fuss gleichförmig montiret, mit Feuer- und Seitengewehr versehen.....werden sollen u.s.w., vom 26. October 1756. Auszug. Nach der Sammlung Würzburgischer Verordnungen im Kgl. Kreis-Archiv Würzburg, mitgetheilt von Th. Muhsfeldt, in: Mittheilungen zur Geschichte der militärischen Tracht. Beilagen zum XII. Bande der "Uniformkunde", hrsg. von Richard Knötel (1902), No. 3, pp. 9-10

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