Sault Infanterie

From Project WSS
Jump to navigationJump to search

Hierarchical Path: War of the Spanish Succession (Main Page) >> Armies >> French Army >> Sault Infanterie

Origin and History

This gentleman regiment was raised in 1590 by M. de Lesdiguières. In 1591, the unit took part in the combats of Sparron and Pontcharra against the Savoyards; in 1592, in the siege of Cahours and in the affair of Grésillane; in 1593, in the relief of Exiles; in 1595 in the recapture of Exiles, in the relief of Cahours and in the sieges of Mirabel and Auriol; in 1597, in the combat of Molettes, in the storming of the Fort of Chamousset and in the capture of Charbonnières and of the Castle of Aiguille.

On August 16 1597, under the Marquis de Créqui, it joined the ranks of the French Royal Army.

In 1598, part of the regiment was annihilated when it tried to relieve Aiguebelle. Shortly afterwards, the remaining companies of the regiment made themselves master of the Fort of Barraux and finally recaptured Aiguebelle. In May, the regiment was disbanded to the exception of its colonel company.

On 3 April 1600, the regiment was re-established for the war against Savoy. In August it stormed Montmélian. It then took part in the capture of Conflans, Charbonnières, Chambéry and Miolans. In January 1601, the regiment was once more reduced to a single company.

In April 1610, the regiment was re-established and assumed garrison duty in Grenoble till 1616.

In 1616, the regiment served in another war against Savoy. In 1617, it took part in the capture of Montluel, in the relief of Vercelli, and in the capture of Felissano and Non.

In 1622, the regiment was part of the reinforcements sent to the royal army in front of Poussin. It also took part in the siege of Montpellier. It then returned to Grenoble to assume garrison duty.

In December 1624, the regiment marched against Genoa. In 1625, it took part in the capture of Capriata, in the siege of Gavi, in the attack on Cairo and in the relief of Verua before returning to Dauphiné.

In 1627, the regiment took part in the capture of Poussin and Soyon; in 1629, in the relief of Casale. In 1630, it garrisoned Toulon. In 1632, it campaigned in Vivarais. In 1633, it went to Casale to serve as garrison.

In 1635, at the outbreak of the Franco-Spanish War (1635–59), the regiment took part in the siege of Valence, and in the capture of Candia and of the Castle of Sartiranne before returning to Casale; in 1636, in the battle of Buffalora; in 1637, in the defence of Asti and in the combat of Montebaldone; in 1638, in the relief of Brema and in the defence of Vercelli; in 1639, in the defence of Casale. The regiment then remained in Casale till 1642. In 1643, it took part in the siege of Trino; in 1644, in the sieges of Santia and Asti. It then returned to Dauphiné for its winter-quarters. In 1645, the regiment was sent to Catalonia where it took part in the siege of Roses. In 1646, it embarked at Toulon for Elbe Island where it took part in the siege of Portolongone. In 1647 and 1648, it campaigned in Piedmont. In 1649, it was recalled to France to quench the troubles of the Fronde. It first garrisoned La Fère. In 1650, it took part in the relief of Mouzon and in the combat of Rhétel. In 1651, the regiment served in Languedoc; in 1652, in Guyenne before returning to Piedmont. In 1653, the regiment garrisoned Turin and Pignerolo and then took part in the combat of La Roquette. In 1656, it took part in the siege of Valence; in 1658, in the siege of Mortare. After the Treaty of the Pyrenees, the regiment was stationed in Dauphiné.

In 1667, during the War of Devolution (1667–68), the regiment took part in the sieges of Tournai, Douai and Lille.

In 1672, at the beginning of the Franco-Dutch War (1672–78), the regiment was at the passage of the Rhine and took part in the siege of Nijmegen before taking its winter-quarters in Utrecht. In 1673, the regiment campaigned in Holland. In 1674, it was transferred to Roussillon where it fought in the combat of Morillas. In 1675, it took part in the siege of Bellegarde; in 1676, in a brief offensive in Catalonia and in a combat near Espouilles; in 1678, in the capture of Puycerda.

In 1681, the regiment was sent to occupy Casale ceded to France by the Duke of Mantua. It was then sent to Strasbourg where it took part in the construction of the citadel.

In 1688, at the outbreak of the Nine Years' War (1688–97), the first battalion of the regiment took possession of Avignon; the second battalion served at Philisbourg; and a third battalion was raised to serve in the Alps. In 1689, the first battalion served with the Army of the Rhine. In 1690, the second battalion joined the first on the Rhine. The regiment then returned to Dauphiné. In 1691, the regiment took part in the siege of the Castle of Nice and in the capture of Veillane, Carmagnola and of the Castle of Montmélian; in 1692, in the defence of Pignerolo and Susa. In 1693, the regiment was transferred to Catalonia where it took part in the siege of Roses. It then returned to Piedmont and fought in the Battle of Marsaglia. In 1694, the three battalions were united for the first time in Roussillon, taking part in the passage of the Ter and in the sieges of Palamos, Girona, Castel-Follit and Ostalrich where the third battalion was left as garrison. In 1695, the third battalion became an independent regiment (Sourches Infanterie). The same year, the rest of the regiment served in Roussillon. In 1696, it took part in the relief of Palamos and Ostalrich; in 1697, in the combat of San-Féliu and in the siege of Barcelona.

After the war, the regiment went to Nîmes and then successively garrisoned Auch, Moulins, Dôle and Vienne.

The regiment was among the French infantry units designated as "Petits Vieux" because they pretended to trace back their origins to the old bands of the XVIth century. At the time of the Seven Years' War, it was considered as one of the best regiments of the French infantry.

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

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment was commanded by:

  • since 12 May 1681: Jean-François-Paul de Blanchefort de Bonne de Créqui, Comte de Sault
  • from 17 October 1703: René-Mans de Froulay, Comte de Tessé
  • from 30 November 1707 till 7 July 1732: Marie-Joseph d'Hostun, Duc de Tallard

After the war, the regiment assumed garrison duty in Besançon and incorporated troops from various disbanded regiments.

Service during the War

In 1701, the regiment embarked at Toulon for to join the Franco-Spanish army trying to stop the Imperialist invasion of Northern Italy. On 1 September, it fought in the Battle of Chiari where it was deployed in the centre of the first line. It then took its winter-quarters in Pavia.

In May 1702, the regiment joined the army of the Duc de Vendôme for the next campaign in Northern Italy. On 27 July, the grenadiers of the regiment took part in the Combat of Santa Vittoria where an Imperial corps of 3,400 men (cuirassiers and dragoons) was defeated. On 15 August, the regiment fought in the Battle of Luzzara. Its grenadiers were detached to attack the Castle of Luzzara and others companies had been assigned to guard baggage so that there were only 500 men available when the brigade of the regiment was placed in the centre of the line of battle. It had to cover such a wide area that it had to deploy only two ranks deep. In this disadvantageous position, it valiantly sustained three charges but, reduced to 100 men, it was forced to retire behind the cavalry. Captains de Pourroy, commanding a battalion, de Bruys, de Ver, Deurtière and Saint-Lô; and Lieutenants Saint-André, Beaumont, Saint-Quentin, Chambonas, de Bardonnenche, Dambelle, Dupuy and Becoin were killed. The colonel, Lieutenant-Colonel Duvivier, Major La Bayette and 13 other officers were wounded. The regiment was then sent to Modena to reconstitute its ranks.

In 1703, the regiment was not seriously involved in the campaign. It was attached to Vendôme's Corps for the expedition in Tyrol but was left behind at Desenzano del Garda. In August, it marched from this place to Riva. The same year, the Comte de Sault died and was replaced by M. de Tessé as colonel of the regiment.

In 1704, the regiment took part in the siege of Vercelli, where Lieutenant Pourier perished, and in the siege of Ivrea. It also started the siege of Verrua where its colonel was dangerously wounded.

In 1705, after the capture of Verrua. The regiment took part in the attack on Guerbignano where Captain de Lisle was killed. In October, it was at an engagement near Carpi where M. de Tessé was wounded twice, and Lieutenant de Guerbuisson killed.

In 1706, the regiment took part in the siege of Turin. His grenadiers, under the command of Captains de Bruys and Roquelaure, distinguished themselves on several occasions. During this siege and the disastrous Battle of Turin (7 September), the regiment suffered heavy losses. Captains de Bearnais, La Martinière, Latour and Saint-Martin; and Lieutenants Persillonne and Codeval were killed. Eight other officers were wounded. The regiment took its winter-quarters in Dauphiné.

In 1707, the regiment took part in the defence of Toulon. Initially posted in Fort Sainte-Catherine, it repulsed all attacks during two days. It was then relieved but the troops who had replaced it were less successful and the fort fell in the hands of the Imperialists. On 15 August, the regiment was charged to recapture Fort Sainte-Catherine. It stormed the fort sword in hand and annihilated the four Austrian battalions defending it. This brilliant feat of arm cost it only Captain Pidoux, killed, and Captain Roquelaure, wounded.

In 1708, the regiment, now named Tallard, was transferred to the Army of the Rhine. It was initially posted in the lines beyond the Lauter.

In 1709, the regiment distinguished itself in the combat of Rumersheim where its brigade occupied the centre of the first line. After storming a farm where the enemy had anchored its left, the brigade attacked the infantry frontally, firing a salvo at point blank range while a few companies attacked the flank of the enemy formation and routed them. A soldier named Château took a pair of kettle-drums while three of his comrades each captured a colour. In this combat, the regiment lost Captain La Boissière and Lieutenants Mirabel and Fleurans. The regiment then returned to Weissembourg. In October, it was detached on the Sarre River with M. de Saint-Frémond.

In 1710, the regiment remained in the lines for the entire campaign and then went to Alt-Breisach.

In 1713, the regiment took part in the sieges of Landau and Freiburg. On 29 October, it stormed a demi-lune at Freiburg and the place capitulated the next day. It lost Lieutenant La Bastide in front of Landau and Captain Berthe and Lieutenant Garambourg in front of Freiburg.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform in 1710 – Copyright Kronoskaf
Uniform Details as per
Lemau de la Jaisse, Susane, Marbot
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced gold with a white cockade
Grenadier black tricorne laced gold with a white cockade
Neck stock white
Coat grey-white with yellow buttons on the right side and 1 yellow button on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 yellow buttons
Cuffs grey-white (violet as per Susane), each with 3 yellow buttons
Turnbacks none
Waistcoat grey-white with yellow buttons
Breeches grey-white
Stockings white fastened under the knee with a natural leather strap
Gaiters none at the beginning of the war, white later
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt natural leather (often whitened with pipe-clay) with a brass buckle
Waistbelt natural leather (often whitened with pipe-clay) with a brass buckle
Cartridge Box natural leather
Bayonet Scabbard n/a
Scabbard black with white metal fittings
Footwear black shoes with a brass buckle


Armaments consisted of a musket and a bayonet. Fusiliers carried a sword (brass hilt) while the grenadiers had a sabre.

Other interpretations

For the year 1720, Funcken illustrates a uniform with the following differences: black tricorne laced white; white buttons; grey-white waistcoat with yellow laced buttonholes; grey-white breeches.

NCOs

no information found yet

Officers

no information found yet

Musicians

no information found yet

Colours

Colonel Colour: white field with a white cross.

Ordonnance Colour: a white cross with violet and aurore opposed cantons.

Colonel Colour - Copyright: Kronoskaf
Ordonnance Colour - Copyright: Kronoskaf

References

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 4, pp. 1-26, 38

Other sources

Funcken, Liliane and Fred: Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle, p. 55

Lemau de la Jaisse, P.: Abregé de la Carte Générale du Militaire de France, Paris, 1734, p. 105

Marbot, Alfred de and E. Dunoyer de Noirmont: ‎Les uniformes de l'armée française, T1 "1439 à 1789"‎