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Origin and History
The regiment was created as per a commission dated 1 March 1674, at the moment when a Dutch fleet threatened the coasts of Guyenne. It was raised at Montpellier by the Marquis de Castries. The unit would remain a gentleman’s regiment until December 1762, being known by the names of its successive colonels.
In 1674, during the Franco-Dutch War (1672-78), the regiment initially garrisoned Montpellier. In 1677, it was transferred to the Army of Catalonia and took part in the Battle of Espouilles. In 1678, it was at the siege of Puigcerdà where it then remained as garrison.
In 1681, the regiment was selected for the secret expedition against Casale in Montferrat.
In 1683, the regiment was sent to Languedoc to quench a Protestant uprising. In 1684, it was transferred to Catalonia where it took part in the siege of Girona.
In 1688, during the Nine Years' War (1688-97), the regiment was sent to the Electorate of Cologne. In 1690, it fought in the Battle of Fleurus. In 1691, it took part in the siege of Mons. In 1692 and 1693, it campaigned in Alsace. In 1694, the regiment was sent to the Alps. In 1696, it took part in the siege of Valenza before returning to the Rhine.
By the time of the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment counted only one battalion but, on 1 February 1701, it was increased to two battalions.
During the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment was commanded by:
- from 16 April 1695: Charles de Molette, Marquis de Morangiès
- from 2 August 1705: Louis-Antoine-Armand de Gramont, Duc de Louvigny
- from 27 January 1711 to 7 October 1728: Jean-François Boyvin, Marquis de Bacqueville
The second battalion was disbanded in 1715.
Service during the War
In December 1700, the battalion was sent to Italy.
On 1 September 1701, the battalion took part in the Battle of Chiari where it formed part of Vaudrey’s Brigade.
In 1702, the battalion took part in the capture of Luzzara and Borgoforte.
In 1703, the battalion took part in the French offensive in South Tyrol and was at the capture of Nago and Arco, and at the Combat of Stradella.
In 1701, the battalion remained in Flanders where it was used as garrison.
In 1702, the battalion was sent to Italy. Upon arrival, it was placed in Mantua.
In September 1703, the two battalions were united for the first time and thrown into Torbole where, on 19 September, they were attacked but managed to drive the enemy back.
On 11 January 1704, the two battalions fought at Castelnuovo de Bormia where their colonel was wounded. They then served at the sieges of Vercelli, Ivrea and Verrua.
On 1 March 1705, the regiment distinguished itself in the attack of the Fort de l’Isle at Verrua. At the end of April, it was transferred to the siege of Mirandola where a captain was wounded. On 24 June, it opened the trench in front of Chivasso and the Colonel de Morangiès was mortally wounded. On 16 August, the regiment fought in the Battle of Cassano. It later took up its winter-quarters in San Martino de Bisole.
On 19 April 1706, the regiment took part in the Battle of Calcinato. It later took part in the siege and battle of Turin. After the retreat of the French army across the Alps, the regiment was sent to Flanders.
In 1707, the regiment campaigned in Flanders, brigaded with Gondrin Infanterie.
On 11 July 1708, the regiment fought in the Battle of Oudenarde. During the siege of Lille, it remained at the camp of Pottes.
On 11 September 1709, the regiment took part in the Battle of Malplaquet where it was brigaded with Champagne Infanterie.
In 1711, the regiment took part in the attack on Arleux.
On 10 July 1712, the regiment distinguished itself in the Combat of Beuvrage where Captain Milon was killed. After the French victory at Denain, the regiment contributed to the recapture of Douai, Le Quesnoy and Bouchain.
In 1713, the regiment was transferred to the Army of Germany. On 18 August, it distinguished itself in the attack of the counterguard of Landau. It later took part in the siege of Freiburg.
This article incorporates texts from the following books which are now in the public domain: Susane, Louis: Histoire de l'ancienne infanterie française, J. Corréard, Paris, 1849-1856, Tome 6, pp. 430-435