Vengerskiy Hussars

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Origin and History

During the war against Turkey, from 1736 to 1739, many Hungarian deserters from the Turkish and Polish armies entered Russian service and settled in the southern regions of Russia.

At the beginning of the war with Sweden, on October 14 1741, the unit was transformed into a regular hussar regiment known as Vengérskiy Hussarskiy (Hungarian Hussar). In theory, it then counted 10 companies for a total of about 962 men (800 troopers). However, until July 1759, most Russian hussar regiments counted only 6 squadrons. Tielke specifically mentioned this regiment as counting 600 men during this period.

During the entire Seven Years' War, the regiment was under the command of Colonel Maksim Zoric.

Service during the War

In 1756, at the outbreak of the war, the regiment was stationed at Tver, Pskov and later in Courland. During the winter of 1756-57, the regiment joined the Russian field army.

In 1757, the regiment took part in the campaign in East Prussia under General-in-Chief Count Apraxin. On August 30, at the Battle of Gross-Jägersdorf, it was part of Riazanov's Brigade belonging to the rearguard. When the Russian army deployed, it was placed in the first line of the cavalry right wing.

In January 1758, the regiment took part in the Russian invasion of East Prussia. In July of the same year, it also took part in the invasion of Brandenburg. On September 11, during the retreat of the Russian army after the Battle of Zorndorf, about 600 men of the regiment were part of Rumyantsev's Corps who made a junction with the main army at Landsberg and encamped on the left bank of the Wartha. Around mid-November, the regiment took up its winter-quarters in Muhlhausen (present-day Mlynary) and Preussisch Holland (present-day Paslek).

In 1759, the regiment took part in the campaign in Brandenburg. On July 23, it was at the Battle of Paltzig where it was attached to Demiku's Light Cavalry Brigade deployed on the right wing of the first line. A few weeks later, on August 12, the regiment fought in the Battle of Kunersdorf where it was deployed behind the Austrian Grenzers in the first line of the right wing.

At the beginning of October 1760, during the campaign in Brandenburg, the regiment formed part of Totleben's Corps who captured Berlin. It then took up its winter-quarters in Angermünde.

At the beginning of the 1761, the regiment was part of Tottleben's Corps for the campaign in Pomerania. During the campaign it was attached to Berg's Cavalry Corps. It reinforced Suvorov's force which was pursuing Platen's Corps. On September 23, the regiment clashed with Platen's vanguard (some dragoons and Ruesch Black Hussars) in the village of Różanka near Landsberg (present-day Gorzów Wielkopolski). On October 13 near Gulzow (present-day Golczewo), a few squadrons of the regiment, under the command of Filipovic; along with the Serbskiy Hussars under the command of Colonel Tekely; and Tuverov and Colpackov Cossacks took part in the unsuccessful assault on a Prussian convoy escorted by 50 grenadiers from battalion Schwerin. Captain Schönholz ordered the Prussian convoy to form a Wagenburg and was quickly rescued by Major Potscharly's small force consisting of 300 men from Belling Hussars, 200 volunteers from Grenadier Battalion 17/22 Rothenburg and 1 gun. On November 18, the regiment took part in combat of Labuhn (present-day Łabuń Wielki). On November 26 at Fierhof, along with Rizhskiy Horse Grenadiers, Horvat Hussars, Tverskiy Dragoons and Tobolskiy Dragoons, it attacked the Prussian infantry. On December 2 along with Horvat Hussars and 2 guns, the regiment once more took part to a clash with the Prussians, attacking from the left while Brigadier Krasnoscekov attacked from the right with 400 Cossacks and Tverskiy Dragoons (commanded by Suvorova). The regiment wintered in Pomerania.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1757
Source: David at Not By Appointment
Uniform Details
Headgear black kolback with a red bag and red cords, knots and tassels
Neck stock black
Pelisse red
Fur trim black
Lace 8 black braids
Buttons brass
Dolman red with 8 black braids and brass buttons
Collar red edged black
Cuffs red edged with a black chevron
Breeches red decorated with intricate black loops
Cloak unknown colour
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt black leather
Waist-sash black and red barrel sash
Scabbard black leather with iron fittings
Boots black Hungarian boots
Horse Furniture
Saddlecloth red with black wolf tooth edging
Sabretache red, wearing a black “EP” monogram and bordered with a black lace


Troopers were armed with a short, curved sabre and two pistols (no carbine). Zweguintzov mentions that Russian hussars also carried a carbine.

Officers

Officers wore uniforms identical to those of the troopers with the following differences:

  • gold cords and lace
  • yellow Hungarian boots
  • pelisse trimmed with grey fur

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms identical to those of the troopers with the following differences:

  • gold cords, knots and tassels on the kolback
  • gold lace
  • a golden braid on the border of the collar
  • golden braids on the sleeve (2 for the vakhmistr, 1 for quartermaster)

Musicians

There was 1 kettle-drummer for the regiment and 1 trumpeter for each of the 10 companies. They wore uniforms identical to those of the troopers with the following differences:

  • small wings on the shoulders
  • braids of an unknown colour

Trumpets and kettle drums were made of copper and decorated with red lace and cords.

Colours

Russian hussar regiments carried no standards during the Seven Years' War.

References

Funcken, L. and F.: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

Gromoboy, Vlad: The Russian Pandours - Pandour Hussars (1741-61), Seven Years War Association Journal Vol. XII No. 1

  • Großer Generalstab, Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II (Publisher). Die Kriege Friedrichs des Großen. Dritter Teil: Der Siebenjährige Krieg 1756–1763. Vol. 4 Groß-Jägersdorf und Breslau, Berlin 1902
    • chapter A: Das Kaiserlich Russiche Heer, page 1-46
    • appendix: supplement 1, Das Kaiserlich Russiche Heer, page 3-18

Karpiński, Tomasz: Kampania 1761 r. na Pomorzu Zachodnim, manuscript

Konstam A. & Younghusband B.: Russian Army of the Seven Years War, Osprey, London, 1996

Maslowskij, D.: Russkaia armija, vol. 3, p. 43

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

Tielke, J. G.: An Account of some of the most Remarkable Events of the War between the Prussians, Austrians and Russians from 1756 to 1763, Vol. 2, Walter, London, 1788

Vial, J. L.: Nec Pluribus Impar

Zweguintzov, L'Armee Russe, 1973

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