Thursday, 24 December 2009

Happy Xmas and New Year!

In the age old tradition of the NBA Blog, I wanted to wish everyone Happy Xmas and a Happy New Year, as well as to post the usual obscure sort-of-Xmas-related template of a genuine 18th century uniform for people to identify. :-)

See you all next year...

David.



Update: The uniform is that of Norwegian ski troops of 1765, as shown in a manuscript manual of that year by one Grüner; see the bottom 2 plates on this website: http://www.elverumske.no/esc_english/history.htm

Friday, 18 December 2009

Not quite SYW but...


My apologies for the long gaps between posting here but behind the scenes I've been busy with various flag projects, some paid; one project is British flags of the late 17th century and War of the Spanish Succession (snapshot of 2 such flags attached) for a friend. No prizes on offer but it will be fun to see if anyone recognises them. :-)

I do have plans to do more on this blog but shortage of time and energy are the enemy at the moment. I'll post more here as soon as I can; hopefully next will be more Saxon SYW heavy cavalry, a Saxon uhlan and some more hussars of various nations, as I'd like to squeeze more mileage out of my hussar template since it was a lot of effort to create it!

Thursday, 19 November 2009

ImagiNations Flags Just Completed...


I had a request for 2 ImagiNations flags based on Prussian infantry colours from Cardinal Hawkwood on the TMP forums so thought I'd post a JPEG of them here. The originals are in PDF vector format so much crisper than these but this gives some idea of them. I did unshaded, background shaded and fully shaded versions and it was the fully shaded versions that were chosen. I have to say I'm quite pleased with the flags! :-)

Update 4th December: See them in action at: http://passageoflines.50.forumer.com/viewtopic.php?f=64&t=704

Thanks, Cardinal Hawkwood! :-)

Monday, 16 November 2009

Dragoon of the Leib-Dragoner Regiment Kurfürstin von der Pfalz (Princess Elector)


From 1758, when it joined the Reichsarmee, the regiment had 5 squadrons of 2 companies each, with a total strength of about 800 men and horses.

I can find little record of the unit's service with the Reichsarmee; after joining in 1758 the next mention (in Pengel and Hurt) is in June 1760 when they were still at 5 squadron strength, with a suggested total of perhaps 500 men (at an average squadron strength of 100 for the entire cavalry of the Reichsarmee). The regiment does not appear to have been at Freiberg in 1762. If anyone knows more, please do let me know and from what source you have found the information.

There are 2 descriptions of the uniform, one from 1747 and one from 1777, but nothing directly from the SYW, unfortunately. The earlier one gives black-lined coats, the second red lined; the earlier also gives yellow shoulder knots, the latter black. No description of the horse furniture survives; Knötel shows the regiment with red shabraques laced yellow but we do not know what the source for this was so it is probably unreliable. I have chosen the colour scheme of the earlier uniform rather than the later one but it is possible that elements of the later uniform were already in use during the SYW. I have also used the colour scheme for the horse furniture shown by Knötel, for want of anything else.

Saturday, 31 October 2009

Map symbols in progress...


I'm still fiddling around with new map symbols now and again. Here are the prototypes of a Wasserschloss (based on one in Schleswig-Holstein) and a town hall, based on the famous one at Alsfeld in Hesse.

The great beauty of vector drawings (and these will be available as .svg drawings) is that they are clear and crisp at any size, small or large, unlike pixel-based bitmap illustrations, so the detail is not wasted. The jpeg shown here cannot and does not do justice to the crispness of the originals!

Monday, 19 October 2009

Grenadier of the Württemberg Leibgrenadiere à Cheval


First raised 1758. Theoretically 4 squadrons of 512 men total. More details to follow later...

Monday, 12 October 2009

British 18th century infantry colours - 4th Foot


I had a request for some AWI British colours so thought I'd keep things ticking over here by posting 2 versions (one shaded, above, one not, to the left) of what I've just done in a format that's usable by anyone who wants the finished version - this JPEG image will not be editable without significant deterioration of the image so it's not really one for ImagiNations people to play with, I'm afraid. What you see is what you get! ;-) (And frustratingly if I were to post it as a large non-lossy PNG file the crazy blog would convert it to JPEG.) It's quite suitable for SYW to AWI (or even up to the Revolutionary Wars of the 1790s) as the design barely changed throughout the mid-to-late 18th century. The top colour is the regimental colour and the bottom one the King's colour; every British battalion had one of each. You can scale the image for printing to whatever size you need. (The original flags were 6 feet 6 inches by 6 feet but it seems most wargamers like their flags oversized and for 25-28mm figures will often have British infantry flags like these 40mm across, for example.) The best format for high quality flag images is really PDF as they remain vector files but they can't be posted for viewing on the blog anyway. If anyone wants the high-quality PDF version, let me have an email address in the comments and I'll send it to you.

Also, if anyone wants to commission me to do flags for them (18th-19th century particularly) I'm open to suggestions/ideas; being paid to do them is especially appealing but if it's not too onerous a task I'm also still open to the possibility of doing some freebies. :-)

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Long time no post...


It's been quite some time since I last posted a template, sadly. Real Life has been the bugbear, in part, plus I've been commissioned to do some flags for an ImagiNation. It's been a very enjoyable project but it's a pity there aren't 72 hours in a day! Hopefully images of some of those will be appearing on the appropriate blog but I'm sworn to secrecy until that happens, upon pain of lifelong conscription into a very rough and tough regiment...

I've enjoyed developing my flag drawing skills. I'm currently working on possible prototypes of some British Napoleonic colours; snapshot attached of roughs of variants of the colours of the 33rd Foot 1815. The final versions of these flags are produced as high quality PDF files, with the advantages of vector images that they are highly detailed and crisp at almost any magnification.

When doing some hunting on the 'Net for information on British 18th and 19th century flags I came across this very inspiring site: http://www.dupagemilitaryflag.com/743917.html with lots of fascinating detail on British flags, and also on how so many modern illustrations and reproductions get the proportions of the flags and their details badly wrong. It's mostly because people misread amd misuse what is still one of the prime sources of information, a book produced in a limited edition in 1893, Samuel Milne Milne's "Standards and Colours of the [British] Army 1661-1881". (The DuPage military flag site also has a very interesting article on AWI Hessian flags, available as a PDF file, and photographs of some of the splendid and beautiful reproduction flags they make for museums, re-enactors and anyone who wants a high-quality, well-researched historical military flag or colour.)

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Fusilier of the Schaumburg-Lippe-Bückeburg Infantry Regiment

Raised 1751. A regiment of 8 companies c.820 men. Chef: Graf Wilhelm von Schaumburg-Lippe.

Schaumburg-Lippe was the smallest allied state but contributed quite heavily for its size, providing very good artillery, a miner company, an infantry regiment and a mounted carabinier company.

The infantry regiment fought entirely in the western theatre against the French and was at the siege of Minden 1758, the battle of Krefeld 1758, the battle of Lutterberg 1758, the battle of Minden 1759 and the battle of Vellinghausen 1761, as well as other actions. According to Mollo, the unit eventually became entirely an artillery guard unit.

Most depictions seem to rely on a
Knötel plate showing Schaumburg-Lippe units in 1765, later than the SYW; Mollo's picture of a soldier of this unit differs in showing pure white pompom and bobs, a black stock, buttons on the cuffs and no buttons on the left side of the coat.

Belts were white, cartridge box black leather, scabbards brown, sword hilt brass with brass fittings on the scabbard, shoes black leather.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Trooper of Saxon Karabiniergarde (Variant 2)

This is based on the work of Johannes Eichhorn, as discussed in my previous posting; again, many thanks to Harald Howe for the information.

Differences from Friedrich's interpretation as shown in my previous template include no shoulder strap, Swedish cuffs with 3 buttons in the standard configuration, the white aiguillette and the different design of the pistol holster cover, with only one line of red lace and more pointed at the bottom.

I'll post more detailed information on the unit and its history later. In short, they were in Poland during the Pirna debacle and so were spared the forcible enlistment in the Prussian army suffered by so much of the Saxon army. They then fought with the Austrians from 1757 to the end of the war in 1763, and were present at Kolin, Moys, Torgau and Freiberg, amongst other actions.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Trooper of Saxon Karabiniergarde (Variant 1)

It has been quite a saga finding information on the Saxon Karabiniergarde and there will be at least 2 variants of this uniform, as the sources I have conflict. This is one of the variants suggested by Wolfgang Friedrich; the other variant will be based on the work of Johannes Eichhorn of Großenhain in Saxony, who did a great deal of research on the Saxon Army from the 1920s to the 1940s, not auspicious times for doing such work, and sadly he now seems to be almost forgotten. Friedrich mentions Eichhorn in his references but little of Eichhorn's work was ever published. I am very grateful to Harald Howe for bringing Johannes Eichhorn and his work to my attention. I have a particular fondness for the Saxon Army of the mid-18th century and I am pleased to be able to bring the valuable work of a nearly forgotten researcher on that army to the attention of those using this blog.

Unit details etc. to be completed later...

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Trooper of the Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Rutowski

Known as Leichtes Dragoner Regiment von Rutowski. First raised 1742. Inhaber: GFM Graf Rutowski. Commander: GM von Dyherrn.

Apparently had the more expensive German horses (like the cuirassiers), not the cheaper Polish horses ridden by the other chevaulegers regiments.

This was the only light dragoon or chevauleger regiment captured at Pirna in 1756 and the men were apparently forcibly enlisted in the Prussian dragoon regiment Württemberg, from which, no doubt, as many of them as could do so very sensibly deserted as quickly as possible.


The blank template is identical to that of Graf Brühl (see below).

Trooper of the Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Prinz Albrecht

Raised 1745. Inhaber: Prinz Albrecht von Sachsen. Commanders: GM von Monroe, from 1759 GM Graf Renard. Other details including history almost exactly the same as Prinz Karl etc.; see below.

The blank template is identical to that of Graf Brühl (see below).

Trooper of the Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Graf Brühl

8 companies in 4 squadrons 1756, theoretical strength 762. Chef: Graf Brühl (the War Minister). Commanders: Oberst von Goltsnitz; from 1758, Oberst Friedrich von Brühl. The chevaulegers regiments were mostly mounted on cheaper Polish horses than the cuirassiers and the Rutowski Dragoons, who had the more expensive German horses.

3 of the 4 chevaulegers regiments, Prinz Karl, Graf Brühl and Prinz Albrecht, were stationed in Poland when much of the Saxon army surrendered at Pirna in 1756 and so avoided the capture and forced enlistment by the Prussians which most of the army suffered. From 1757 those 3 chevaulegers regiments served with the Austrians. All 3 were at Kolin 18th June 1757, where, along with Austrian cavalry and infantry, they delivered the coup de grace to the Prussian army, the first major defeat the Prussians had suffered. As they hacked into the Prussian infantry the Saxon battle cry was "Dies ist für Striegau!" ["This is for Striegau!", the Saxon name for their defeat at Hohenfriedberg 1745]. The Saxons had much to avenge, as Frederick bore a grudge against all things Saxon that manifested itself in all manner of brutalities. All were also at Moys, September 1757, when Winterfeldt's Prussian detachment was crushed and Winterfeldt, Frederick's closest confederate, was killed (possibly shot in the back by his own troops). They were at the Austrian victory at Breslau, November 22nd 1757, as part of Nadasdy's right wing. At Leuthen December 5th 1757 the Saxon chevaulegers regiments were savagely mauled. Initially they were in advance of the main Austrian army at Borne, where Frederick's advance guard beat them and pushed them back on the Austrian army's main lines. They were then sent to the left flank, where they were involved in the main Prussian flank attack that routed the Austrian and allied army. Nostitz, their commander and "a first class officer" (Duffy, "Prussia's Glory"), was mortally wounded and out of a total of around 1200 men in the 3 chevaulegers regiments, 479 were killed, wounded or captured. Graf Brühl lost 111. The 3 chevaulegers regiments served with the Austrian army for the rest of the war; Graf Brühl particularly distinguished themselves at the battle of Freiberg 29th October 1762.

Equipment: Crossbelts, waistbelt and sword frog all white leather; scabbard black with brass(?) fittings and brass handle to sword.

Again, thanks to Christian Rogge for his translation of sections of Friedrich's book on the Saxons, which were a great help in drawing all these templates of the Saxon chevaulegers.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Jäger of the Württemberg Feldjäger zu Fuss


First raised 1759 as 1 company, part of the Feldjägerkorps (which included the Feldjäger zu Pferde, previously posted on this blog). Commanders during the SYW were: 1759: Major von Weitershausen, 1760: Major Georg Friedrich Böcklin von Böcklinsau. Disbanded 1765.

Served in Hessen and Saxony 1759 and 1760 (above from Kronoskaf).

Equipment: Brown leather waistbelt with sword in brown leather scabbard. Brown leather crossbelt and cartridge pouch. Firearm with brown leather shoulder strap. Black leather shoes.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Trooper of the Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Prinz Karl Revisited

I am grateful to Christian Rogge for taking time from his busy life to translate text for me from Wolfgang Friedrich's Uniformen der Kurfürstlich Sächsischen Armeen 1683-1763 - Selbstverlag Arbeitskreis Sächsische Militärgeschichte e.V Dresden, 1998 on the Saxon chevaulegers. This allows me to portray the Regiment Prinz Karl as described by Friedrich; note the different cuff detail and the button fastening the turnbacks. Otherwise this is very close to the previous version I have posted here, which was based very much on Schirmer as detailed by Pengel and Hurt.

Next, the other 2 chevaulegers regiments that fought with the Austrians, Graf Brühl
and Prinz Albrecht, both with lapels, if I can reconcile all the petty differences of detail!

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Trooper of Bavarian Hohenzollern Dragoons

Impoverished by years of war during the War of the Austrian Succession, Bavaria had to make severe cutbacks and the army was reorganised in the 1750s. The 4 cavalry regiments, 2 regiments of cuirassiers and 2 of dragoons, were very much below strength - at the beginning of the SYW there were 1190 men and only 270 horses all told. The cavalry took no part in the SYW.

Hohenzollern Dragoons, like the other regiments, had a theoretical strength of 9 companies with 38 men each, organised in 3 squadrons in wartime. Inhaber: GFM J. Fürst Von Hohenzollern. Commander: Freiherr Von Nagel. In garrison in Munich, then Scharding.

The colours of the shabraque are speculative but possible; they follow the same pattern as those of Preysing.

Musketeer of the Hamburg Infantry Regiment

The Hanseatic cities of Hamburg, Bremen and Lübeck stayed out of the fighting during the SYW but they did have their own regiments of infantry. This is a musketeer of the Hamburg infantry regiment, around the beginning of the SYW. First raised 1690, it had 12 companies between 1695 and 1775. There was also a dragoon unit, one company strong between 1716 and 1811, plus an artillery corps.

The only detailed information I have found on these troops is a Knötel plate; this gives the primary sources as an oil painting in the Hamburger Alterthumsmuseum ("Parade eines Theils der Garnison auf dem Grossneumarkt"), large wooden figures, weapons, etc. (
Knötel thanks Thomas Muhlsfeldt in Hamburg for the information). If anyone has further information I'd be very interested to know more. Does anyone know if the Hamburg material survived the horrors of World War Two?

Friday, 3 July 2009

18th century town plans revisited again


Although there wasn't much interest in my town plans I'm still doing some work on them, as I find them appealing myself. Here's a snapshot of the plan of Prague in the 18th century as it now is, with the street plan almost completed.

Monday, 29 June 2009

Trooper of the Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Prinz Karl

First raised 1733. 8 companies in 4 squadrons 1756, theoretical strength 762. Chef: to 1758, Prinz Karl von Sachsen, after 1758 Duke of Kurland. Commanders: 1745-1757 Leutnant-General Nostitz, mortally wounded Leuthen; replaced by Colonel von Benkendorf. The chevaulegers regiments were mostly mounted on cheaper Polish horses than the cuirassiers and the Rutowski Dragoons, who had the more expensive German horses.

3 of the chevaulegers regiments were stationed in Poland when much of the Saxon army surrendered at Pirna in 1756 and so avoided the capture and forced enlistment by the Prussians which most of the army suffered. From 1757 those 3 chevaulegers regiments served with the Austrians. All 3 were at Kolin 18th June 1757, where, along with Austrian cavalry and infantry, they delivered the coup de grace to the Prussian army late in the day, the first major defeat the Prussians had suffered. As they hacked into the Prussian infantry the Saxon battle cry was "Dies ist für Striegau!" ["This is for Striegau!", the Saxon name for their defeat at Hohenfriedberg 1745]. The Saxons had much to avenge, as Frederick bore a grudge against all things Saxon that manifested itself in all manner of brutalities. Prinz Karl were at Moys, September 1757, when Winterfeldt's Prussian detachment was crushed and Winterfeldt, Frederick's closest confederate, was killed (possibly shot in the back by his own troops). They were also at the Austrian victory at Breslau, November 22nd 1757, as part of Nadasdy's right wing. At Leuthen December 5th 1757 the Saxon chevaulegers regiments were savagely mauled. Initially they were in advance of the main Austrian army at Borne, where Frederick's advance guard beat them and pushed them back on the Austrian army's main lines. They were then sent to the left flank, where they were involved in the main Prussian flank attack that routed the Austrian and allied army. Nostitz, their commander and "a first class officer" (Duffy, "Prussia's Glory"), was mortally wounded and out of a total of around 1200 men in the 3 chevaulegers regiments, 479 were killed, wounded or captured. Prinz Karl alone lost 214, probably more than 50% of the regiment. The 3 chevaulegers regiments continued to serve with the Austrian army for the rest of the war; Prinz Karl particularly distinguished themselves at the Relief of Olmütz June-July 1758, when a large Prussian convoy was destroyed forcing Frederick to abandon the siege with heavy losses, and at the battle of Freiberg 29th October 1762.

Coming soon - Trooper of Saxon Chevauleger Regiment Prinz Karl

The templates are done and now I have to do the write up before posting. There's quite a lot to say about these troops!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Mounted jäger of the Württemberg Feldjäger zu Pferde

Raised 1759, at a strength of 2 squadrons. Served in Hesse and Saxony in 1759 and 1760. Disbanded 1768.

Württemberg troops served with the French and Austrians until 1760 but I do not know exactly where the cavalry, including the Württemberg Feldjäger, served. There was also a company of foot jäger, dressed very similarly (except for yellow lace on the hat, white breeches and smaller cuffs with 3 or possibly only 2 buttons), who were disbanded in 1765.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Musketeer of Hessen-Darmstadt Landbattalion Fock

First raised 1699. Commander: General-Leutnant von Fock (or Foch).

Hessen-Darmstadt supplied a very fine battalion of infantry to the Reichsarmee which distinguished itself at Rossbach and served throughout much of the war (see elsewhere on this blog for the template). The 2 cavalry regiments saw no active service in the SYW, it seems, but there are suggestions that the other infantry units, including Landbattalion Fock, were involved. Unfortunately I can find no information on organisation of this unit, nor on operational use in the SYW, or on any of the other Hesse-Darmstadt units. If anyone has information on this unit or the others, I'd be grateful to know it. Thanks.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

32nd Reichsarmee Template - Trooper of the Pfalz Kurassiere (Electoral Rhenish Circle) 2

The Palatinate Reiter Regiment Prinz Friedrich Michael von Zweibrücken consisted of 3 squadrons of 3 companies each, with 144 men in each squadron. In 1757 2 of the squadrons joined the Reichsarmee and combined with the Kurpfalz Oberrheinische Kreiseskadron to form the Pfalz Kurassiere (see below). For unit history also see Pfalz Kurassiere 1, below.

31st Reichsarmee Template - Trooper of the Pfalz Kurassiere (Electoral Rhenish Circle) 1

Re-raised 1754 as the Kurpfalz Oberrheinische Kreiseskadron. 1 squadron of 3 companies, with a strength of 172 men in 1757. With the Reichsarmee it was combined with 2 squadrons of the Prinz Friedrich Regiment to form the Pfalz Kurassiere, with a total strength of 460 men (but only 413 horses!).

The Inhaber was GFM Pfalzgraf Friedrich Michael Von Zweibrucken. Commanders were: Freiherr von Siegenhofen, 1760 von Wickenburg, General Stechinelli. Present at a number of actions including Rossbach 1757 (where it formed part of the second line of cavalry swept away by the Prussian flank attack as it was trying to form up), Leipzig, Torgau, Meissen, Dippoldiswalde, Maxen 1759, Meissen, Strehlen, Wittenberg 1760, Weida, Zwickau, Plauen, Hof 1761.

There are some disagreements about details among the sources but this seems to me the most likely SYW uniform for this contingent of the regiment. The shabraque pattern I have taken from a 1775 painting of Palatinate troops in the Anne S K Brown collection, as otherwise I have only verbal descriptions. The detailed Martin Lange material in the Pengel and Hurt "Bavaria, Saxony and Palatinate Supplement" seems to me to be the most authoritative source of material so I have relied most on that, although referring to the other P&H material, the Sturm cards and others. Note that, despite the name, Palatinate cavalry had apparently not worn the cuirass since the War of the Spanish Succession.

The next template will be of the second contingent of the Pfalz Kurassiere, the Prinz Friedrich Regiment.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

18th century fortified town outlines I've drawn; a few questions


A while ago I did a number of outline drawings of 18th century fortified towns, including Prague, Mannheim, Minden and a few others, based on contemporary plans. I could make an .svg file of them available if anyone is interested in using them; they could be useful e.g. on fairly large-scale campaign maps, fictional or otherwise. If I were to do so, would people like them to show the approximate street plans and areas of building, or would they be happy to have the outline only? (They do not at the moment include the street plans so it would take me a while to add them.) They are also currently not to scale but I could spend time adding a scale and then adapting them all so they are shown at the same scale. Obviously it would be much quicker to release them as they are but I'd be happy to do the aforementioned "improvements" if that would make them more useful.

Anyway, I look forward to your comments. Thanks.

David.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

A few of the map symbols are now available as an .svg file


I have now created an .svg file of some of the map symbols I did a few months ago. There's nothing here particularly new, except that I've done the symbols with both blue and red roofs as requested, but people who care to use Inkscape: www.inkscape.org (or any other vector graphics program that can import .svg files) can now fiddle with and use these symbols and/or export them from Inkscape et al in different formats if they wish to use them on their non-Inkscape produced maps.

The blog will not unfortunately let me upload the .svg file so, if anyone wants it, please leave a message in the comments with your email address (suitably disguised to avoid spammers) and I'll email it to you. (The image here merely shows what is in the Inkscape file.)

I hope to find time to do some more map symbols soon - perhaps when the 48 hour day comes into force. ;-)

David.

P.S. Update 29.10.09: I noticed that the .svg file has done funny things to the windmill - basically the arms have been filled when they should be open so the detail is obscured. I've now fixed this so if anyone wants the upadted file rather than doing it for themselves then let me know and I'll email the updated file to them.

Friday, 5 June 2009

Trooper of Württemberg Roeder Dragoons 1760

Württemberg Roeder (or Röder) Dragoons first raised 1758 as the Dragonerregiment von Degenfeld. Inhabers: 1758 Colonel Christoph August Count von Degenfeld; 1759 Major-General August Gottlieb Reinhard von Röder; 1762 Major-General Wolfgang Heinrich von Rothkirch. Von Degenfeld also commanded the regiment from 1758-9. Composition: 4 squadrons.

2 squadrons served in Saxony in 1760.

I've chosen to depict the regiment in 1760 when it was the Roeder (or Röder) Dragoons as we have a good contemporary illustration of the regiment by Johann Christian Becher (
Stiftung Weimarer Klassik)
(the New York Public Library website has a much larger and clearer version of this than the one on the Kronoskaf site (which is under "Degenfeld Dragoons")). This does not, as far as I can see, show a black collar (see, by contrast, Pengel and Hurt, and Kronoskaf) but probably a white one, if it shows a collar at all (the image is unclear). The buttons are also curious as those on the coat look as if they are tin, contrasting with brass buttons on the waistcoat. Without seeing the original or a very good reproduction this is speculative. Consequently I've shown them all as brass. The lace on the hat may be gold but I suspect is more likely to have been yellow. It is clear from the Becher illustration that there were at least 8 buttons on the lapels and possibly more.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Trooper of Bavarian Preysing Dragoons

Impoverished by years of war during the War of the Austrian Succession, Bavaria had to make severe cutbacks and the army was reorganised in the 1750s. The 4 cavalry regiments, 2 regiments of cuirassiers and 2 of dragoons, were below strength - at the beginning of the SYW there were 1190 men and only 270 horses all told. The cavalry took no part in the SYW.

Preysing Dragoons, like the other regiments, had a theoretical strength of 9 companies with 38 men each, organised in 3 squadrons in wartime. From 1758 Preysing became la Rosée
. Little seems to be known of the regiment's history or that of the other 3 regiments.*

So why, given the total lack of involvement in the SYW, have I drawn a template of one of them? Well, I liked it; it's simple and elegant and red-coated, and I like its obscurity. Who can resist an elegant redcoat uniform? Not me...

*If anyone has detailed regimental histories, please let me know! Thanks.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Saxon Hussar of the Frei-Husaren von Schill


Raised 1761. Commander 1761-3: Rittmeister Johann-Georg von Schill, an ex-Austrian officer from Bohemia, born a commoner and ennobled for his services to Austria and Saxony. He was the father of the Prussian officer von Schill who led an unsuccessful revolt against Napoleon in 1809 in which the younger von Schill was killed. Unit only about 40 strong (a very weak squadron) and it probably formed the bodyguard of Prinz Xaver, Comte de Lusace, the Saxon commander, although Kronoskaf says the unit also included mounted and foot jägers (citing Schirmer).

There were two uniforms and this is the earlier one; the later one may not actually have been worn during the SYW. We do not know what the horse furniture of the earlier uniform was so I have left this as a blank shabraque on the coloured version but using the pattern of the later version.

Saturday, 30 May 2009

30th Reichsarmee Template: Trooper of the Ansbach Dragoon Regiment (Franconian Circle)

Franconian Kreis-Dragoner Regiment first raised 1691. Inhaber: Markgraf von Brandenburg-Ansbach. Composition: 5 squadrons each of 2 companies, theoretical establishment a total of c.700. 21 contingents. Disbanded 1791.

Fought at Rossbach, where as part of the second line of the right wing of cavalry their performance was not entirely uncreditable as they lasted longer than the Hohenzollern and Bayreuth Cuirassiers before being routed by the Prussian envelopment. In May 1758 had a strength of 407. Still with the Reichsarmee in June 1760. Not at Freiberg 1762.

I've chosen the simplest recorded variant of this uniform, which more closely matches later near-contemporary depictions and seems more likely given the poverty-stricken nature of the Reichsarmee. Richard Knötel in his Uniformkunde shows a surprisingly complex uniform with white lace on the buttonholes and a curious emblem like a coiled snake on the shabraque. The Sturm cigarette cards figure shows a much darker blue for the facings and dots around the sinuous pattern on the edge of the shabraque.