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Origin and History
This gentleman's regiment was raised at Lille by de Bartillat on January 10 1668.
During the War of the Polish Succession, the regiment served on the Rhine in 1733.
During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment initially served in Bavaria in 1742. In 1743, it operated in Alsace. In 1744, it was transferred to Flanders where it campaigned till 1748.
In 1753, the regiment was stationed along the Sambre River.
In 1756, the regiment ranked 28th and counted two squadrons.
During the Seven Years' War, the colonel of the regiment was:
- since February 1749 until December 1 1761: Comte de Lusignan (aka Lusignem)
When the French cavalry was reorganised on December 1 1761, the regiment was incorporated into Berry Cavalerie.
Service during the War
By August 1 1757, the regiment had joined the French army in Germany. On November 5, it took part in the Battle of Rossbach where it was brigaded with Descars Cavalerie in the Reserve under the Duc de Broglie. At the end of the year, it took its winter-quarters in Leer in Ostfriese, in the fourth line of the French Army.
By May 23 1760, the regiment was part of the left reserve of the first line of Broglie's Army, placed under the command of Saint-Germain. By December 30, the regiment had taken its winter-quarters in Wipperode.
To do: campaigns from 1761 to 1762
|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|
|Neck stock||black cravate|
|Coat||grey white lined red with 4 pewter buttons under the right lapel and a pewter button on each side at the small of the back
|Waistcoat||buff leather jerkin with pewter buttons|
|Greatcoat||grey white lined red|
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.
Evolution of the uniform during the war
Throughout the war the French cavalry uniform seems to have evolved significantly. Our only primary source for the uniform at the start of the conflict is the Etat Général des Troupes Françoises of 1753. The first primary pictorial evidence comes from Raspe in 1761. Here we present various interpretations of the evolution of the uniform.
Raspe's illustration depicting the uniform towards the end of 1760 shows the following evolutions:
- a white and light blue cockade on the tricorne
- coat, lapels, cuffs and turnbacks edged with the regimental braid (alternating yellow and blue squares)
- grey white waistcoat edged with the regimental braid (alternating yellow and blue squares)
- only 3 buttons on each cuff and on each pocket
Lienhart and Humbert, a secondary source, show the following differences for the uniform of 1757 (looks more like the uniform worn before 1753):
- a white cockade on the tricorne
- only 3 buttons on each cuff
- grey white lapels
- a grey white shoulder strap with a red and white aiguillette
- red saddle cloth and housings bordered with a white braid
Officers wore uniforms similar to those of the troopers with the following distinctions:
- no turnbacks
- no lace on the coat and waistcoat
- Maréchal des logis: silver laced tricorne, housing bordered with a 2,7 cm silver lace
- brigadier: double silver lace on the cuffs
Regimental standards (4 silken standards): embroidered and fringed in gold;
- obverse: white field; centre device consisting of a golden royal sun surmounted by a scroll bearing the royal motto “Nec Pluribus Impar”
- reverse: red field; a scroll carrying an unknown motto
This article incorporates texts from the following books which are now in the public domain:
- Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891, pp. 345-346
Funcken, L. and F.: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
Lienhart, Docteur and René Humbert: Les uniformes des armées françaises”, Leipzig
Menguy, Patrice: Les Sujets du Bien Aimé (a website which has unfortunately disappeared from the web)
Raspe, Gabriel Nicolas: Recueil de toutes les troupes qui forment les armées françoises, Nuremberg 1761
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
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.