Guttenstein Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: War of the Spanish Succession (Main Page) >> Armies >> Austrian Army >> Guttenstein Infantry

Origin and History

The regiment was ceded to the Imperial Army in 1685 by the Bishop of Würzburg. The same year, in was involved in the Battle of Gran against the Turks. In 1686, it took part in the siege of Ofen and in the expedition in Lower-Hungary; in 1687, in the Battle of Mohacs; and in 1697, in the Battle of Zenta.

During the XVIIth century, the regiment campaigned against the Turks and the French.

By the time of the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment counted four battalions.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the proprietors of the regiment were:

  • since 1685: Hans Carl Count von Thüngen
  • from 1694: Leopold Baron von Thavonat
  • from 1695: Wenzel Count von Guttenstein
  • from 1707 to 1721: Franz Josef Baron von Wetzel

Service during the War

In mid-February 1701, the regiment marched from Hungary through Carinthia by Linz and Botzen (present-day Bolzano). By the beginning of May, it had reached Solorno and Botzen. At the end of May, when Prince Eugène de Savoie launched the Imperialist invasion of Northern Italy, 1 battalion of the regiment was placed in observation in front of Monte Baldo under Count Guttenstein while 2 other battalions marched from Ala to Borghetto. By 6 June, 1 battalion was part of Guttenstein's Corps stationed in the region of Trento and the 3 other battalions were with the main body encamped at San Martino near Verona. On 19 June, the regiment reinforced Herberstein's Corps at Bevilacqua. By 8 July, the 3 battalions, now attached to Börner's Corps, were posted in Castelbaldo. By 17 July, the entire regiment had rejoined the main army. On 27 July, it followed the army when it passed the Mincio River. On 1 September, the regiment fought in the [[1701-09-01 – Battle of Chiari|Battle of Chiari] where two of its battalions were initially driven out of the farmhouses and mills which they occupied before courageously retaking them. In November, part of the regiment under Major Count Althann occupied the town and fortress of Mirandola. At the beginning of December, the regiment was at the siege and capture of Canneto. The regiment took its winter-quarters at Concordia on the Po.

In 1702, the regiment took part in the campaign in Northern Italy. Even though the theoretical strength of the regiment was supposed to be 2,500 men, by 30 April 1702 it counted only 1,773 men. On August 15, it fought in the Battle of Luzzara where it was deployed in the first line of the infantry centre.

On September 7 1706, the regiment was at the relief of Turin.

In 1707, the regiment took part in the conquest of the Kingdom of Naples.

Uniform

This regiment seems to have changed uniforms on several occasions. It was dark blue around 1689-1691, pearl grey with red distinctive around 1692, blue around 1707, and pearl grey again with blue distinctive around 1708. Here we illustrate the blue uniform worn around 1705.

Privates

Uniform in 1705 - Copyright: Richard Couture
Uniform Details as per
Donath
Headgear
Fusilier black tricorne laced white; as field sign, green foliage was attached to the tricorne in summer and a wisp of straw in winter

N.B.: to distinguish soldiers (from corporal down to privates) of each company, a button or rosette at the colour of the company was attached to the tricorne.

Grenadier bearskin edged with a white braid; medium blue hanging bag edged with a white braid in a zig-zag pattern
Neck stock white
Coat medium blue with white lining; white buttons on the right side and 1 white button on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 white buttons
Cuffs white, each with 3 white buttons
Turnbacks none
Waistcoat white with white buttons
Breeches white
Stockings white fastened under the knee with a natural leather strap
Gaiters made of canvas and used only when the soldier wore linen breeches; in this case, the stockings were replaced by linen socks; the use of gaiters generalized much later
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather
Waistbelt a yellow deer or buffalo leather waist-belt worn above the waistcoat
Cartridge Pouch red or black leather pouch containing 24 cartridges, a pewter oil flask, two needles attached to a small chain (to clean the touch-hole of the lock), a tube that held the match for lighting the fuse of grenades, with a wooden peg on a small chain and a roll of fuse. The cartridge box had two cover flaps. The top one was sometimes decorated with a metal badge bearing the cipher or the arms of the Inhaber.

Grenadiers carried two cartridge pouches. The first one, slightly larger than that of fusiliers, was worn on wide cross-belt and contained grenades and a pewter tube that held the match for lighting the fuse of grenades; the smaller second pouch was attached to the waist-belt and contained cartridges for the musket.

Bayonet Scabbard black leather
Scabbard none
Footwear Russia leather shoes


Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet. Grenadiers were also armed with hand grenades.

NCOs

NCOs wore uniforms similar to those of privates with the following distinctions:

  • a red neck stock
  • yellow buttons

NCOs carried a spontoon (half-pike). They were also armed with a Stossdegen (a long two-edged estoc or rapier) carried in a black leather scabbard attached to the waist-belt.

NCOs of grenadier companies carried a flintlock musket instead of the spontoon.

NCOs also carried a cane whose characteristics indicated their precise rank. This cane had the length of a walking stick and was carried in and out of service. In action, to free hands, the cane was hanged to a button of the coat. Grenadier sergeants and fouriers were distinguished from privates by three silver braids on the bag of their bearskin.

Officers

Uniforms of officers were always of finer cloth than those of the privates.

Officers wore a black and yellow silk sash across the chest or around the waist.

Lieutenants of the grenadier companies were distinguished from privates and NCOs by four golden braids on the bag of their bearskin; captains by five golden braids on their bearskin.

Officers carried a partisan. The partisan was decorated with a tassel: gold for the colonel, gold with silver fringe for the lieutenant-colonel, gold and silken fringe for captains and silken fringe for lieutenants. In some regiments, the captains' tassel was entirely of silk; in this case the lieutenants' partisan had no tassel. The partisans of staff officers had gilt butt caps.

Officers were also armed with a Stossdegen (a long two-edged estoc or rapier) carried in a black leather scabbard attached to the waist-belt.

Officers carried a cane whose characteristics indicated their precise rank. This cane had the length of a walking stick and was carried in and out of service. In action, to free hands, the cane was hanged to a button of the coat.

Officers of grenadier companies carried a flintlock musket instead of the partisan. Captains, lieutenants and sergeants of these companies always had their bayonet affixed to their musket.

In the field, officers carried a pair of pistols.

Musicians

In the Austrian Army of the time, musicians often wore uniforms in reverse colours with the distinctive colour of the regiment used for the coat.

The drum belt was usually brown and worn on the right shoulder.

Colors

no information found yet

References

Abtheilung für Kriegsgeschichte des k. k. Kriegs-Archives: Feldzüge des Prinzen Eugen von Savoyen

  • Series 1, Vol. 1, Vienna 1875, pp. 212-218, 222-227

Series 1, Vol. 4, Vienna 1877, p. 655, App. 22a

Donath, Rudolf: Die Kaiserliche und Kaiserlich-Königliche Österreichische Armee 1618-1918, 2. Aufl., Simbach/Inn 1979. Bl. 1, 5, 9

Gräffer, August: Geschichte der kaiserl. Königl. Regimenter, Corps, Bataillons und anderer Militär-Branchen seit ihrer Errichtung biz zu Ende des Feldzuges 1799, Vol. 1, Vienna, 1804, pp. 184-187

Seyfart: Kurzgefaßte Geschichte aller kaiserlich-königlichen Regimenter zu Pferde und zu Fuß, Frankfurth and Leipzig, 1762, p. 19

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