Du Roy Cavalerie

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

Origin and History

The regiment was raised on May 27 1635 by the Maréchal de Vivonne when the carabins companies were grouped together to create dragoon regiments. It first chef was the Cardinal de Richelieu and it was originally known as the "Dragons du Cardinal". On February 16 1646, the regiment took the title of du Roy and was incorporated into the French cavalry.

In 1635, during the Thirty Years' War (1618-48), the newly raised regiment was immediately sent to the Army of the Rhine and took part in the relief of Mainz, in the combat of Vaudrevange and in the retreat on Metz.. On 30 July 1636, the regiment was broken down into single companies as all other regiments of the French cavalry. On 20 January 1638, it was re-established as the "Fusiliers à Cheval de Son Éminence". In 1638, the regiment took part in the siege of Saint-Omer and in the Combat of Polinkove; in 1639, in the siege of Hesdin; in 1640, in the siege of Arras; and in 1641, in the siege of Aire, La Bassée and Bapaume.

On 4 December 1642, at the death of the Cardinal de Richelieu, the regiment was given to the king in Richelieu's testament. On 1 August 1643, the regiment took the title of "Fusiliers à Cheval du Roi".

In 1643, the regiment took part in the Battle of Rocroi and in the capture of Thionville; in 1644, in the siege of Gravelines; in 1645, in the sieges of Cassel, Mardyck, Lencke, Bourbourg, Menin, Béthune and Saint-Venant.

On 16 February 1646, the regiment was transformed into a cavalry regiment known as the "Régiment du Roi". In 1646, it took part in the sieges of Courtrai, Berghes and Dunkerque; in 1647, in the sieges of La Bassée and Dixmude; and in 1648, in the sieges of Ypres and Furnes, and in the Battle of Lens.

In 1649, during the Troubles of the Fronde (1648-53), the regiment took part in the sieges of Cambrai and Condé; in 1650, in the reduction of a rebellion in Bordeaux; and in 1651, in the occupation of the provinces of Nivernais and Berry; and in 1653, in the siege of Saint-Ménehould.

In 1654, the regiment took part in the capture of Arras and Le Quesnoy; in 1655, in the capture of Landrecies, Condé and Saint-Ghislain; in 1656, in the relief of Valenciennes. In 1658, it was at the siege of Dunkerque and at the Battle of the Dunes. In 1660, the regiment was sent to Picardie where it remained until 1665. In 1666 and 1667, it was stationed in Holland. In 1667, it took part in the siege of Lille. In 1668, it campaigned in Franche-Comté.

In 1672, at the outbreak of the Franco-Dutch War (1672-78), the regiment took part in the conquest of Holland; and in 1673, in the siege of Maastricht. In 1674, it was transferred on the Rhine and fought in the combats of Sinsheim, Entzheim and Mulhouse; in 1675, in the combats of Turckheim, Altenheim; in 1676, in the combats of Haguenau, Saverne and Kochersberg; in 1677, in the siege of Freiburg; and in 1678, in the capture of Ghent and Ypres, and in the Battle of Saint-Denis.

In 168i, the regiment was at the camp of Lower Alsace; in 1682, at the camp of Artois,. In 1684, it covered the operations at the siege of Luxembourg. In 1685, 1686 and 1687, the regiment was at the camp of the Saône.

In 1688, at the outbreak of the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment joined the Army of Germany and took part in the siege of Philippsburg, Mannheim, and Frankenthal in Palatinate. In 1691, it was transferred to Flanders and took part in the Combat of Leuze; in 1692, in the siege of Namur and in the Battle of Steenkerque; in 1693, in the Battle of Landen; in 1695 in the capture of Tongres and in the bombardment of Bruxelles; and in 1697, in the siege of Ath.

In 1699, the regiment was at the camp of Coudun, near Compiègne.

At the beginning of the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment counted 3 squadrons.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the king was the nominal Mestre de Camp of the regiment but the successive Mestres de Camp Lieutenants commanding the regiment were:

  • from 20 Janvier 1694: François-Marie Duc de Broglie
  • from 26 November 1705 to 20 January 1734: Jean de Faret de Montfrain, Marquis de Fournès

Service during the War

In 1701, the regiment joined the Army of Flanders.

On 11 June 1702, the regiment took part in an engagement near Nijmegen.

In May 1703, the regiment took part in the siege of Tongres. On 30 June, it fought in the Battle of Ekeren.

In 1704, the regiment was transferred to the Moselle and then to Germany. On 13 August, it fought in the disastrous Battle of Blenheim. It then retired to the Rhine.

From 1705 to 1709, the regiment defended the Province of Alsace under the command of the Maréchal de Villars.

In 1709, the regiment was transferred to the Low Countries. On 11 September, the regiment was present at the Battle of Malplaquet.

On 24 July 1712, the regiment was present at the Battle of Denain.

In 1713, the regiment was at the sieges of Landau and Freiburg.

Uniform

Troopers

Uniform Details as per Susane
Headgear black tricorne laced gold
Neck stock probably a white cravate
Coat blue lined red with gilt buttons
Collar none
Shoulder straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets with gilt buttons
Cuffs red cuffs with gilt buttons
Turnbacks none
Gloves buff
Waistcoat buff leather jerkin with gilt buttons
Breeches kid (goat leather)
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather
Waistbelt natural leather
Cartridge Box red leather
Scabbard black leather
Footgear black soft boots
Horse Furniture
Saddlecloth blue bordered with a braid at the king's livery
Housings blue bordered with a braid at the king's livery
Blanket roll n/a


Troopers were armed with a carbine, two pistols and a sabre.

Standards

Regimental standards (4 standards): blue field embroidered and fringed in gold

  • obverse: centre device consisting of a golden royal sun surmounted by a scroll bearing the royal motto “Nec Pluribus Impar”, corner device consisting of a golden fleur de lys
  • reverse: blue field sown with golden Fleurs de Lys
Tentative Reconstruction
Regimental Standard - Copyright: Kronoskaf

References

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

Pajol, Charles P. V.: Les Guerres sous Louis XV, vol. VII, Paris, 1891, pp. 325-326

Susane, Louis: Histoire de la cavalerie française, Vol. 2, J. Hetzel et Cie, Paris, 1874, pp. 46-58