Ysenburg-Büdingen, Johann Kasimir Prince von

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Ysenburg-Büdingen, Johann Kasimir Prince von

Swedish Major-General (1751-56), Hessian Major-General (1756-58), Hessian Lieutenant-General (1758-59)

born December 9, 1715 Count of Ysenburg-Birstein, Landgraviate of Hesse-Kassel

died April 13, 1759 during the Battle of Bergen near Frankfurt/Main.


Ysenburg was the youngest son of the reigning Count von Ysenburg-Birstein.

In 1744, Ysenburg entered in the Swedish service.

In 1746, during the War of the Austrian Succession, Ysenburg took part in the conquest of the Austrian Netherlands, under the command of the Maréchal de Saxe.

In 1749, Ysenburg became knight of the Swedish Royal Order of the Seraphim.

In 1751, Ysenburg was promoted to major-general in the Swedish Army.

In 1756, Ysenburg joined the Hessian Contingent which, under the command of his brother Lieutenant-General Prince Christian Ludwig von Ysenburg, was sent as reinforcement in Great Britain.

In May 1757, Ysenburg returned to the continent with the Hessian Contingent which landed at Stade and then joined the Allied army assembling under the command of the Duke of Cumberland to oppose the French invasion of Hanover. On July 26, Ysenburg took part in the Battle of Hastenbeck. At the end of the year, when Ferdinand of Brunswick assumed command of the Allied army, Ysenburg took part in the Allied counter-offensive in Hanover.

At the beginning of 1758, Ysenburg took part in the Allied winter offensive in Western Germany where the French were forced to retire to the Rhine and Main rivers. The Landgraviate of Hesse-Kassel was now free from French troops. Landgrave Wilhelm VIII, who had taken refuge in Hamburg, was thus able to Kassel in May. On May 9, Ferdinand detached the Prince von Ysenburg, who had been promoted to lieutenant-general, to Marburg, to organize, at the request of the landgrave, the defence of Hesse-Kassel against Soubise's Army. Ysenburg left Westphalia with a force of 2 bns (Canitz and Ysenburg), 2 sqns (Pruschenk Cavalry), 2 light troops coys (Freytag Jägers) and a few artillery pieces. By May 19, Ysenburg was at the head of 6,600 men (2 regular bns (Ysenburg and Canitz), 4 militia bns (Grenadiers, Gundlach, Wurmb, Freywald), 3 Jäger coys (2 coys of Freytag Jägers and 1 coy of Hessian Jägers), 2 Invalid coys, 7 sqns (2 sqns of Pruschenk Cavalry, 4 sqns of Prinz Friedrich Dragoons and 1 sqn of Hesse-Kassel Hussars) and 10 artillery pieces) assembled near Marburg. From this force, 3 sqns from Prinz Friedrich Dragoons were still dismounted. With his small army, Ysenburg could not consider an offensive against his opponent, but he had to dispute any advance of the French into Hesse-Kassel and retreat to Hameln only in the last extremity. On July 23, Ysenburg led his small army during the Combat of Sandershausen. On October 10, he took part in the Battle of Lutterberg.

Ysenburg and his corps spent the winter of 1758/59, near Fritzlar, securing Hesse against French incursions.

In 1759, during the Allied spring offensive in Western Germany, Prince Ysenburg collaborated with Prince Heinrich of Prussia to drive the Reichsarmee out of Thuringia. His corps then effected a junction with Ferdinand’s Army, On April 13, Prince Ysenburg led one of the column of the Allied army during the Battle of Bergen. He was killed in action at the head of Hanoverian battalions as he attacked a far superior French force. His adjutant, Murhard, managed to carry his body away from combat and transported him to Büdingen.


This article is mostly a translation of a text, which is in the public domain:

  • Grosser Generalstab Kriegsgeschichtliche Abteilung II: Die Kriege Friedrichs des Grossen, Part 3 Der siebenjährige Krieg 1756-1763, Vol. 9 Bergen, Berlin, 1911, append. 15