Origin and History
The regiment was raised in 1673. It participated to the campaigns against the French till 1677. In 1683, it was with the army at the relief of Vienna. From 1686 to 1688, it operated in Hungary. In 1688, it set off for the Rhine and was present in all campaigns till 1695. In 1696, the regiment served in Hungary once more. Then from 1697 to 1699 it was stationed in Poland.
During the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment served with the Imperial army under prince Eugene. In 1705, it returned to Saxony. In 1706 it was in Poland. From 1707 to 1712, it took part to the campaigns in Flanders. Then it served in Poland once more till 1717.
During the War of the Polish Succession, the regiment fought in Poland in 1734 and 1735.
During the War of the Austrian Succession, the regiment served in Bohemia, Moravia and Saxony in 1741, 1742, 1744 and 1745. In 1748, it was augmented by 3 coys of the disbanded 2nd Garde regiment and 1 coy of Bellegarde. At the end of the war, in 1749, the regiment lost 6 coys with the reductions.
In 1756, at Pirna, the regiment turned over into Prussian service, however, the troops refused the oath to the king of Prussia. Therefore the entire regiment was disbanded and distributed among the Prussian infantry.
In 1757, the regiment reformed with 1 battalion in Hungary and fought with the French armies till 1763. After the peace settlement of Hubertusburg it reformed into 3 battalions in 14 coys.
In 1778, the regiment was reduced to 2 battalions in 10 coys.
Seven Years' War Organisation
In 1756, the état mentions 2 battalions for 10 coys of musketeers and 2 coys of grenadiers. Each musketeer coy counted 95 men, grenadier coy 97 men, regimental staff amounted to 17 men. The regiment totaled some 1,160 men.
In 1757, the single reformed battalion consisted of 4 coys plus 1 coy grenadiers of former Leibgrenadiergarde.
Chef of the regiment:
- 1700: Kurprinz or Königlicher Prinz (Royal Prince)
- 1729: Kronprinz
- 1733: Leibregiment
- 1737: united with Leibgrenadiergarde and now became Königliche Leibgarde zu Fuß
- December 1740: separated from the Leibgrenadiergarde, becoming Königin (Queen)
- 1757: Prinz Joseph von Sachsen
Kommandeur of the regiment:
- 1739: colonel von Münchau (died as lieutenant-general 1759)
- 1759: lieutenant-colonel von Geysau
- 1763: colonel baron von Rohr
Service during the War
At the end of August 1756, when Frederick II proceeded to the invasion of Saxony, the regiment retired to Pirna with the rest of the Saxon army. At Pirna, the regiment was deployed on the right wing under von Rochow, as part of von Stolberg's Brigade. The Prussians blockaded the Saxon army in Pirna from September 9 until October 15 when the Saxons finally had to surrender. The regiment was forcefully incorporated into the Prussian army. However, since the troops refused the oath to the king of Prussia, the entire regiment was disbanded and distributed among the Prussian infantry units.
In 1757, a new regiment was raised and included into the Saxon Auxiliary Contingent serving with the French. It was known as Prinz Joseph.
In 1758, to avoid further contact with the Prussians, the contingent marched through southern Germany and had, by July, assembled in Strasbourg. On September 3, the regiment was part of the Saxon contingent, under the command of prince Xaver, who encamped at Castrop, 15 km from Recklinghausen, on his way to make a junction with Contades. This contingent made a junction with Contades' army around mid September. As part of Chevert's and Fitzjames' divisions, it reinforced the army of the Prince de Soubise in Hesse. On October 10, the contingent first saw action at the battle of Lutterberg where its determined attacks decided the day for the French army. On October 20, 10 days after their victorious action at the battle of Lutterberg, the Saxon regiments rejoined Contades at Werl.
On April 13 1759, the regiment took part in the battle of Bergen where it formed part of the first line of the left wing under the command of the baron de Dyherrn. In June, during the French offensive in West Germany, the regiment was part of the main army under the command of the Marquis de Contades where it was deployed in the second line of the infantry centre. On August 1, the regiment took part in the battle of Minden where it was deployed in the second line of the infantry left wing under the command of the comte de Lusace.
To do: description of the actions of the regiment from 1760 to 1763.
Besides the uniform worn at the beginning of the war in 1756 and after the capitulation of Pirna, the new regiments were re-dressed with white uniforms from Austrian depots, just adapting the distinctive colors. Because of the difference between Autrian and Saxon color pigments, the distinctive colors have perhaps changed a little bit (medium red instead of cochineal red ?).
|Coat||white with a brass button in the small of the back, 6 (3+2+1) brass buttons on the chest, 3 brass buttons at waist level (right side only)
|Waistcoat||cochineal red with horizontal pockets with 3 brass buttons and lapels with brass buttons|
Troopers were armed with a musket, a bayonet and a sword.
Officers and NCO
Officers and NCOs wore a black tricorne laced gold with a white cockade.
NCOs were distinguished from privates by a golden lace edging the cuffs.
The drummers of the regiment wore uniforms with reverse colours:
- crimson coat heavily decorated with yellow braids on the sleeves (chevrons), swallow nests, buttonholes and pockets
- white collar, white cuffs edged yellow, white turnbacks
- brass buttons
- crimson waistcoat with brass buttons
- white breeches
- white gaiters
Leibfahne: white field carrying the Saxon-Polish coat of arms surrounded by rich white embroideries with a red border.
Ordinarfahne: cochineal red field with rich white embroideries wearing a gold AR cipher on a stone pedestal surrounded by a green wreath and surmounted by a red and gold crown.
Friedrich, Wolfgang, Die Uniformen der kurfürstlich Sächischen Armee 1683-1763, Dresden 1998
Müller, Reinhold, Die Armee Augusts des Starken: Das Sächische Heer von 1730-1733, Berlin 1984
Origin and History: editors translation from "Geschichte und gegenwärtiger Zustand der Kursächsischen Armee." (History and present state of the Saxon Army.) 2nd edition, part IX, Dresden 1793.
Rogge, Christian, The French & Allied Armies in Germany during the Seven Years War, Frankfurt, 2006
Schirmer, Friedrich, Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989
Wagner, Siegbert, Die Uniformen des kursächischen Armee im Jahre 1745, unpublished manuscript, Hannover 1979
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.