Cambis Infanterie

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> French Army >> Cambis Infanterie

Origin and History

The regiment was created on January 23 1676 by Louis Victor de Rochechouart, Duc de Vivonne. It was raised in the town of Messina in Sicily, part from a battalion of La Marine Infanterie, part from Sicilian recruits. The regiment often changed its name: Vivonne, Thiange, de Mortemart, de Laval, de Tonnay Charente. From 1676 to 1749, the regiment belongs to the Maison de Rochechouart. The family counts four colonels of the regiment.

During the War of the Polish Succession, the regiment was stationed in Kehl in 1733, then at Ettlingen in 1734.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment initially served on the Rhine until 1743. From 1745 to 1748, it took part in the various campaigns in Flanders.

The regiment counted two battalions.

During the Seven Years' War, the regiment ranked 62nd. It was under the command of:

  • since February 1 1749 until December 21 1762: Jacques David, Marquis de Cambis d'Orsan

On December 21 1762, when the French army was reorganised, the regiment was disbanded and incorporated into Royal Infanterie.

Service during the War

In 1756, the first battalion of the regiment took part in the amphibious expedition against Minorca and in the capture of Fort St. Philip. Meanwhile, the second battalion remained in Provence to protect the coasts against any British enterprise.

By August 1 1757, the regiment was garrisoning Béziers and Narbonne in Languedoc.

In 1758, the 2nd battalion was part of the reinforcements sent from Brest to Louisbourg aboard du Chaffault's Squadron. It arrived at Louisbourg on May 31. A few days later, a British army landed nearby and undertook the siege of Louisbourg. The battalion was captured at the capitulation of the fortress at the end of July. It was brought back to Tavistock, West Devon, Great Britain.

In March 1759, the second battalion was exchanged and returned to France. In the summer and autumn, a few companies of the regiment were assigned to Thurot's Squadron which was blockaded in the harbour of Dunkerque by a British squadron under the command of Commodore William Boys. In October, Boys' Squadron was driven from his station by a gale. On October 15 at 5:00 p.m., Thurot seized the opportunity, slipped out through a thick fog and made to the northward. He then sailed for Ostend, Göteborg and later Bergen.

To do: campaigns from 1760 to 1762



Uniform in 1758 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform Details as per
Etrennes militaires 1758,
La Chesnaye 1759 and Etat militaire 1761
Musketeer black tricorne laced gold and silver with a black cockade
Grenadier black tricorne laced gold and silver with a black cockade

towards 1759, bearskins became increasingly common among grenadiers of the French Infantry (Taccoli, in his work published in 1760, depicts a grenadier of this regiment wearing a bearskin with a red back edged with a braid of alternating yellow and white rectangles)

Neckstock black
Coat grey-white with alternating copper and pewter buttons down to the waist on the right side
Collar none (red in 1759)

N.B.: the manuscript of 1757 as well as Taccoli illustrate a red collar

Shoulder Straps n/a
Lapels none

N.B.: curiously, the manuscript of 1757 illustrates red lapels with alternating copper and pewter buttons

Pockets horizontal pockets (2 pewter buttons and 1 copper button on each pocket)
Cuffs red with 2 pewter buttons and 1 copper button
Turnbacks none (Taccoli shows white turnbacks)
Waistcoat red with alternating copper and pewter buttons; horizontal pockets, each with 2 pewter buttons and 1 copper button
Breeches grey-white
Gaiters white
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather (white as per Taccoli) with a brass buckle
Waistbelt natural leather (white as per Taccoli) with a brass buckle
Cartridge Box natural leather
Bayonet Scabbard n/a
Scabbard n/a

Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet. Fusiliers carried a sword (brass hilt) while the grenadiers had a sabre.






The colonel flag was white with a white cross. Ordonnance flags had four white cantons, each with three red waved lines, and a white cross.

Colonel Colour - Source: Kronoskaf
Ordonnance Colour - Source: Kronoskaf

N.B.: the manuscript of 1757 illustrates a totally different ordonnance flag with a white cross and alternating red and green cantons


Bakshian, Aram Jr., Soldiers of New France - French and Indian War, The Armchair General Vol. 1 No. 3, 1968

Bunel, Arnaud, Vexillologie française

Manuscript "Troupes du Roi, Infanterie française et étrangère, année 1757, tome I", Musée de l'Armée, Paris

Menguy, Patrice; Les Sujets du Bien Aimé

Mouillard, Lucien, Les Régiments sous Louis XV, Paris: 1882

Pajol, Charles P. V., Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891

Rogge, Christian; The French & Allied Armies in Germany during the Seven Years War, Frankfurt, 2006

Sommaire des forces armées Françaises à l'intérieur et à l'extérieur de la France - 1er Août 1757, Service Historique de l'armée de terre

Taccoli, Alfonso; Teatro Militare dell' Europa, Part 1, vol. 2; Madrid, March 1760

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.