Origin and History
The regiment was raised on May 30, 1653 by Armand de Beautru, Comte de Nogent.
In 1653, the regiment took part in the sieges of Vervins, Rethel, Mouzon and Sainte-Ménehoud; in 1654, in the sieges of Stenay, Arras and Le Quesnoy; in 1655, in the siege of Landrecies, Condé and Saint-Ghislain. In 1656, it was ceded to the Marquis de Vaubrun and sent to Italy, where it participated in the siege of Valencia. In 1657, the regiment returned to Northern France and was present at the capture of Montmédy, Saint-Venant, Ardres and La Mother-aux-Bois. In 1658, it was ceded to the Chevalier de Nogent and fought in the Battle of the Dunes.
In 1661, the regiment was reduced to its Mestre de Camp company. It was re-established at its full strength in 1665. In 1667, it contributed to the capture of Lille, where it remained in garrison. In 1668, it was once more reduced to a single company. The regiment was re-established a third time on 9 August 1671, it then numbered six companies. On March 15, 1672, it was split into two distinct regiments: Sainte-Ruth Cavalerie, the object of the present article and De Vins Cavalerie, which would be disbanded in 1679 after the Treaty of Nijmegen.
In 1672, at the outbreak of the Franco-Dutch War (1672-78), Sainte-Ruth Cavalerie took part in the campaign in Holland. In 1673, it was at the siege of Maastricht. In 1674, it was ceded to the Marquis de Saint-Germain-Beaupré and took part in the in the Battle of Seneffe. In 1675, it covered the sieges of Dinant, Huy and Limbourg. In 1676, it served on the Moselle and took part in the Combat of Kokersberg. In 1677, the regiment was brought back to Flanders and took part in the Battle of Cassel and in the siege of Saint-Omer. In 1678, it was at the sieges of Ghent and Ypres and fought in the Battle of Saint-Denis.
On August 8, 1679, the regiment was reduced to a single company for a fourth time. On January 15, 1684, it was permanently re-established.
In 1688, at the outbreak of the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment was allocated to the Army of Germany, took part in the conquest of Palatinate and served on this frontier for three years. In 1692, it was transferred to Flanders and took part in the sieges of Namur and Charleroi and in the Battle of Steenkerque. In 1693, it fought in the Battle of Landen and was present at the capture of Huy and Charleroi. On February 10. 1694, the regiment was ceded to the Comte de Cossé (future Duc de Brissac).
In 1701, at the outbreak of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-13), the regiment was allocated to the Army of the Rhine. In 1702, it took part in the Battle of Friedlingen. From 1705, it served in Italy; in 1707, in Savoie and Dauphiné; and from 1710 to 1713, in Flanders and Germany.
In 1719, during the War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718-20), the regiment served with the Army of Spain.
In 1725, King Louis XV bought the regiment. In September 1725, when he married the daughter of Stanisław Leszczyński, he gave the regiment to his father-in-law. Accordingly, the regiment was renamed “Stanislas-Roi”.
In 1731, the regiment is mentioned at Toul. In 1732, it was at the camp of the Meuse.
During the War of the Polish Succession (1733-35), the regiment served with the Army of the Rhine.
In 1735, the regiment was put in garrison in Mirecourt. By a regulation dated March 30, 1737, the regiment was renamed “Royal-Pologne”.
In 1742, during the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-48), the regiment initially served in Flanders. In June of the same year, it was attached to the relief force sent to Bavaria to assist the Army of Bohemia. In 1743, the regiment took part in the Battle of Dettingen. In 1744 and 1745, it campaigned in Germany. From 1746 to 1748, it campaigned in Flanders and is mentioned at the Battle of Rocoux (October 11, 1746).
In 1749, the regiment returned to Besançon. In 1751, it was stationed at Sainte-Ménehould; in 1753, at Metz and at the camp of Sarrelouis; and in 1754, at Rethel and Château-Porcien.
The regiment counted 2 squadrons.
During the Seven Years' War, the king was the Mestre de Camp of the regiment but the Mestre de Camp Lieutenant commanding the regiment was:
- from 1746: Comte de Béthune
- from March 19, 1760 to January 3, 1770: Louis-Alexandre-Céleste d'Aumont, Duc de Villequier
When the French Cavalry was reorganised on December 1, 1761, the regiment was increased to 4 squadrons. The 2 additional squadrons came from Marcieux Cavalerie which was incorporated into Royal-Pologne Cavalerie.
Service during the War
In 1756, at the outbreak of the war, the regiment was stationed at Mézières and Charlesville.
In 1757, the regiment was initially sent to Longwy before joining the Army of the Lower Rhine commanded by the Maréchal d'Estrées for the planned invasion of Hanover. At the end of June, it was at the camp of Bielefeld with d'Estrées's main body. On July 26, the regiment took part in the Battle of Hastenbeck where it was deployed in the second line of cavalry of the left wing. It was ordered to support the Grenadiers de France who had advanced into the village of Hastenbeck. After the victory, the regiment encamped at Grosselsen near Hameln with the main body of the Army of the Lower Rhine from July 31 to August 2. After the Convention of Klosterzeven, it followed the main body, now led by the Maréchal Duc de Richelieu who encamped at Halberstadt, in Prussian territory, from September 28 to November 5. The regiment was placed on the first line of the right wing. At the end of the year, it took its winter-quarters in the third line of the French army in Herford.
From March 30 to April 4, 1758, after the retreat of the French army towards the Rhine, the regiment was with Clermont's Army in the camp of Wesel on the Lower Rhine, in the first line of the right wing.
By May 23, 1760, the regiment was part of the right wing of the first line of Broglie's Army. On July 31, the regiment took part in the Battle of Warburg where it was deployed in the second line of the centre. On October 2, Broglie sent M. d'Aubigny's detachment (including this regiment) from Stainville's Corps towards the Lower Rhine. On October 11, this detachment took position between Neuss and Meerbusch. On October 16, the regiment fought in the Battle of Clostercamp where it was deployed in the second line of the right wing.
At the beginning of February 1761, the regiment was quartered in the region of Liège. The same month, 150 men of the regiment were assigned to de Muy's Corps, which had been ordered to march on Hachenburg and reinforce the Maréchal de Broglie. At the beginning of June, the entire regiment was attached to the Army of the Lower Rhine. On July 16, it was present at the Battle of Vellinghausen. By July 25, it was part of de Muy's Corps. In October, the regiment was posted behind the Eder.
In 1762, the regiment was posted in the vicinity of Caudebec on the coasts of Normandy.
|Headgear||black tricorne (reinforced with an iron skullcap for combat) laced silver, with a black cockade on the left side fastened with a black silk strap and a small pewter button|
N.B.: Mouillard and Pajol both mention a black bearskin cap with a red flame
|Neck stock||probably a black cravate|
|Coat||blue lined red (lined blue from 1761) with pewter buttons on both sides (with white buttonholes as per Mouillard) and a pewter button on each side at the small of the back
|Waistcoat||buff leather jerkin with copper buttons|
|Breeches||kid (goat leather)|
|Greatcoat||blue lined red (lined blue from 1761)|
Troopers were armed with a carbine, two pistols and a sabre. They were also supposed to wear a breastplate under their coat during battle but this regulation was not always followed.
no information found
Officers wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers with the following distinctions:
- Maréchal des logis: silver laced tricorne, housing bordered with a 2,7 cm silver lace
- brigadier: double silver lace on the cuffs
Trumpets and kettle-drummers wore a blue coat heavily laced with braids at the king's livery alternating with silver braids.
At the outbreak of the Seven Years' War, Royal cavalry regiments carried two distinct models of standards.
carrying a golden royal sun with a gold and silver fringe.
Regimental standards (4 silken standards): blue field embroidered and fringed in gold
- obverse: centre device consisting of a golden royal sun but without motto, and a golden fleur de lys embroidered in each corner
- reverse: sown with fleurs de lys sans nombre (i.e. the fleurs de lys located near the edge could be truncated)
This article incorporates texts from the following books which are now in the public domain:
- Susane, Louis: Histoire de la cavalerie française, Vol. 2, J. Hetzel et Cie, Paris, 1874, pp. 107-115
- Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891, p. 334
Funcken, L. and F.: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Menguy, Patrice: Les Sujets du Bien Aimé (a website who has unfortunately disappeared from the web)
Mouillard, Lucien: Les Régiments sous Louis XV; Paris 1882
Rogge, Christian: The French & Allied Armies in Germany during the Seven Years War, Frankfurt, 2006
Service historique de l'armée de terre - Archives du génie, article 15, section 1, §5, pièce 23
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.