Marsigli Infantry

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

Origin and History

The regiment was raised in 1682, during the Great Turkish War, for General Melchior Leopold, Baron von Böck zu Leopoldsdorf. Once complete, the regiment marched to Kittsee/ in Austria and after a reviewv by Emperor Leopold I and Duke Karl of Lorraine, it went to Komorn (present-day Komárom/HU). From 3 July, it participated in the siege of Neuhäusel (present-day Nové Zámky/SK).

From 13 July 1683, the regiment took part in the relief of Vienna. It then marched to Párkány and Gran (present-day Esztregom/HU).

On 27 June 1684, the regiment fought in the battle of Waitzen and between 15 July and 19 October, it took part in the unsuccessful siege of Ofen; in 1685, in the siege of Neuhäusel and in the battle of Gran; in 1686, in the second siege of Ofen; and in 1688, in the blockade of Stuhlweissenburg (present-day Székesfehérvár/HU).

In 1689, during the Nine Years' War (1688–97), the regiment took part in the siege of Mainz.

In 1691, the regiment was back in the Balkans to fight the Turks. On 19 August, it fought in the Battle of Slankamen where it was one of the regiment who suffered the worst losses. On 11 September 1697, it took part in the Battle of Zenta.

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

Since its creation, the successive proprietors of the regiment were:

  • from 1682: Melchior Leopold Baron van der Böck (he took 1693 service in Bavarian army in 1693 as General-Feldzeugmeister)
  • from 1693: Ludwig Aloys Count von Marsigli
  • from 1704: Anton Aegid Count Jörger zu Tollet
  • from 1716 till 1731: Ottocar Franz Count von Starhemberg

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

  • from 1702: Bartholomäus Toldo de Beda
  • from 1704: Anton Aegid Count Jörger zu Tollet (the proprietor of the regiment)
  • from 1705: Batholomäus Toldo de Beda
  • from 1707: Baron Liebenberg
  • from 1716: Ottocar Franz Count von Starhemberg (the proprietor of the regiment)

Service during the War

At the beginning of 1702, the regiment had four battalions and two grenadier companies, for a total of 2,500 men. By the end of April, it was on the march for the Rhine. Around the end of July, it joined the army of the Margrave of Baden in front of Landau. From August to September, the regiment then took part in the siege and capture of Landau. On 14 October, the regiment supposedly took part in the Battle of Friedlingen, but we found no trace of this unit in the order of battle.

In August and September 1703, most of the regiment took part in the defence of Alt-Breisach. In mid-November, after the capitulation of Alt-Breisach, the regiment took part in the unsuccessful attempt to relieve Landau.

In 1704, Count Marsigli and Colonel Tanner were condemned for the capitulation of Alt-Breisach. Colonel Jörger zu Tollet was appointed as the new proprietor of the regiment, which took part in the recapture of Landau.

In 1705, the regiment was transferred to Hungary to quench Rákóczi Uprising. On 11 November, it fought in the Battle of Schibo.

In 1707, the regiment was involved in several combats with the Kurucs in Hungary.

On 3 August 1708, the regiment took part in the Battle of Trentschin.

At the beginning of 1709, the entire regiment (16 musketeer coys, 1 grenadier coy) was stationed in Hungary. It then took part in the capture of Käsmark (present-day Kežmarok/SK), Leutschau (present-day Levoča/SK) and of the Castle of Gatsch (?).

At the end of September 1710, the regiment participated in the siege and capture of Neuhäusel.

In 1713, the regiment was transferred to the Rhine where it took part in the defence of Landau which finally had to surrender.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1716 - 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; hanging bag edged with a white braid in a zig-zag pattern
Neck stock white
Coat pearl grey with pewter buttons on the right side and 1 pewter button on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 pewter buttons
Cuffs pearl grey, each with 3 pewter buttons
Turnbacks none
Waistcoat pearl grey with pewter buttons
Breeches pearl grey
Stockings pearl grey 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.

Other interpretations

Tessin gives red distinctive with white metal for this regiment.

NCOs

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.

Colours

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

Donath, Rudolf; Die Kaiserliche und Kaiserlich-Königliche Österreichische Armee 1618-1918, 2. Aufl., Simbach/Inn 1979, plate 10

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. 248-253

Leiler, A.: Geschichte des k. k. Infanterie-Regiments Erzherzog Rainer No. 59, Salzburg 1856

Seyfart, Kurzgefaßte Geschichte aller kaiserlich-königlichen Regimenter zu Pferde und zu Fuß, Frankfurth and Leipzig, 1762, pp. 8-9

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

Acknowledgements

Harald Skala for the translation and integration of Leiler's work.