Bourbon Cavalerie

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Hierarchical Path: War of the Spanish Succession (Main Page) >> Armies >> French Army >> Bourbon Cavalerie

Origin and History

The regiment was raised as “Enghien Cavalerie” on 17 January 1649 for Heinri-Jules de Bourbon, son of the Great Condé.

The regiment was stricken off of the role of the French Army on 20 January 1650 during the Fronde civil war. It was re-established on 26 February 1651 and stricken off of the role a few months later on 13 September. It was reintegrated into the French Army on 7 November 7 1659, after serving for eight years under the banner of the enemies of France.

On 12 April 1661, after the Treaty of the Pyrenees, the regiment was reduced to only one company, as many other cavalry regiments. It garrisoned various places in Picardie.

On 7 December 1665, the regiment was brought back to full strength. In 1666, it was at the camp of Compiègne.

In 1667, at the beginning of the War of Devolution (1667-68), the regiment took part in the campaign in Flanders and in the sieges of Tournai, Douai and Lille. In 1668, it took part in the conquest of Franche-Comté. On 24 May of the same year, it was reduced to a single company and occupied Marsal.

In 1669 and 1670, the regiment occupied Lorraine. On 9 August 1671, it was definitively re-established to full strength.

In 1672, at the outbreak of the Franco-Dutch War (1672-78), the regiment was present at the capture of Orsoy and Emmerich and at the crossing of the Rhine. In 1673, it remained in the Low Countries. In 1674, it took part in the second conquest of Franche-Comté, in the sieges of Besançon and Dôle, and in the Battle of Seneffe.; in 1675, in the capture of Limbourg; in 1676, in the capture of Condé, Bouchain and Aire; in 1677, in the sieges of Valenciennes and Cambrai and in the Combat of Koschersberg; and in 1678, in the siege of Ghent and in the attack on Orteberg.

In 1684, the regiment covered the operations of the siege of Luxembourg.

On 11 December 1686, the regiment took the name of “Bourbon Cavalerie”.

In 1688, at the outbreak of the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment joined the Army of the Rhine and was present at the siege of Philippsburg, Mannheim and Frankenthal. In 1692, it served in Flanders. In 1693, it took part in the Battle of Landen. It remained on this frontier until the end of the war.

At the beginning of the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment counted two squadrons.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive nominal commanders of the regiment were:

  • from 11 December 1686: Louis-Henri, Duc de Bourbon
  • from 15 September 1709: Louis-Henri, Duc de Bourbon
  • from 21 March 1710: Charles, Comte de Charolais

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive mestres de camp lieutenants of the regiment were:

  • from 30 May 1693: N. de Choiseul, Chevalier de Lanques
  • from 6 December 1702 to 1719: N. de Royer, Comte de Saint-Micaud

Service during the War

At the end of June 1701, the regiment was among the units destined to the Army of the Moselle, where it was reported in July.

By March 1702, the regiment had joined the Army of Italy. On 15 August, the regiment took part in the Battle of Luzzara. At the beginning of November, it was posted at Carpi.

By mid-July 1703, the regiment formed part of the corps of Lieutenant-General de Besons, which was destined to effect a junction with the Bavarian Army. At the end of October, it was part of Vaudémont's Corps and numbered 35 mounted men and 203 dismounted.

In mid-February 1704, the regiment (now listed at 3 squadrons) was posted at Sartirana on the Sesia. In June and July, it took part in the Siege of Vercelli.

The regiment continued to serve in Italy until 1706.

In 1707, the regiment campaigned in Dauphiné.

In 1708 and 1709, the regiment campaigned on the Rhine.

By May 1712, the regiment was attached to the Army of Flanders.

In 1713, the regiment took part in the campaign on the Rhine.


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Regimental standards (4 silken standards): blue field, embroidered and fringed in gold; centre device consisting of a golden royal sun surmounted by a scroll bearing the royal motto “Nec Pluribus Impar” in gold; one golden fleur de lys in each corner

Bourbon Cavalerie Regimental Standard – Copyright Kronoskaf


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. 375-382
  • Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891, p. 356-357

Other sources

Funcken, L. and F., Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.