Flandes Cavalry

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

Origin and History

The unit was created by an ordonnance issued by the Governor of the Spanish Netherlands on 18 December 1694. In 1695, the unit was transferred to Spain.

In 1697, the unit took part in the defence of Barcelona until its capitulation, on 10 August.

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

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the colonel of the regiment was:

  • since 25 November 1695 to 1719: Luis de Saa Rangel (22 years as commander of the regiment!)

Service during the War

On 14 November 1701, the unit was reviewed in Barcelona by King Philip V. It then received orders to embark for Italy. On 6 December, it sailed for Naples where it joined the cavalry division of the Count de Aguilar

In January 1702, the unit marched from Naples to join the army assembled in Lombardy. On 15 August, it was at the Battle of Luzzara. By 5 November, it counted 3 squadrons for a total of 271 men.

By 27 January 1704, the regiment was part of d'Estaing's Corps posted at Mortara on the Agogna near Pavia. From 19 May to 21 July, it was at the siege of Vercelli. It then went to the siege of Ivrea from 2 to 17 September.

In 1705, the regiment was at the siege of Verrua which was stormed on 9 April. It then took part in the siege and capture of Nice.

In 1706, after the disaster of Turin, the regiment went to France and was soon redirected to Germany.

On 22 May 1707, the regiment took part in the storming of the Lines of Stollhofen.

On July 11 1708, the regiment fought in the Battle of Oudenarde.

On September 11 1709, the regiment fought in the Battle of Malplaquet.

In 1713, the regiment was at the siege of Freiburg. In September, it received orders to return to Spain.

From 15 May to 11 September 1714, the regiment took part in the siege of Barcelona.

Uniform

The following uniform is a tentative reconstruction based on the fact that the regiment had a blue uniform with red distinctive.

Privates

Uniform in 1703- Copyright Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear black tricorne laced white, with a red cockade
Neck stock white
Coat blue with red lining; pewter (probably) buttons on the right side
Collar none
Shoulder straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with pewter (probably) buttons (we assume the presence of 4 buttons in our plate)
Cuffs red, each with pewter (probably) buttons (we assume the presence of 4 buttons in our plate)
Turnbacks none
Waistcoat probably red with pewter (probably) buttons
Breeches probably blue
Leather Equipment
Bandolier natural leather
Waistbelt natural leather worn above the coat
Cartridge Box natural leather ventral cartridge box
Scabbard black leather with a white metal tip
Footgear black boots
Horse Furniture
Saddlecloth no information found
Housings no information found
Blanket roll no information found


Troopers were armed with a sword, a pistol and a carbine.

Officers

Uniforms of officers differed from those of privates and NCOs by the finer material used. Their waistcoat, saddle cloth and housings were edged with a wide golden braid. They always wore a tricorne notwithstanding the headgear worn by soldiers.

The regulation of 30 December 1704 specified the distinctive of each military rank:

  • colonel: a baton with a gold knob
  • lieutenant-colonel: a baton with a silver knob
  • sargento mayor: a baton with a silver topped knob
  • captain: silver or golden epaulettes (according to the metal colour of the regiment) on both shoulders
  • lieutenant: silver or golden epaulette (according to the metal colour of the regiment) on the right shoulder
  • cornet: silver or golden epaulette (according to the metal colour of the regiment) on the left shoulder

NCOs

The regulation of 30 December 1704 specified the distinctive of each military rank:

  • sergeant : baton without knob and halberd
  • mariscal de logis (quartermaster): small woolen epaulette (red or of the distinctive colour of the regiment)
  • brigadier: swagger stick
  • corporal of squadron: swagger stick
  • second corporal of squadron (rank suppressed in 1706): swagger stick

Musicians

Trumpeters probably wore a “reversed colours” uniform: red coat with blue distinctive.

Standards

Standards: blue field fringed in silver; centre device consisting of a silver field escutcheon with a bundle of arrows tied with a red ribbon.

Tentative reconstruction: Flandes Cavalry Standard – Copyright: Kronoskaf

References

Clonard, Conde de, Historia Orgánica de las Armas de Infantería y Caballería, vol. XIV, Madrid, 1851-62, pp. 445-446

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

Acknowledgment

Jean-Pierre Loriot for the initial version of this article.