Military Subjects: Organization, Strategy & Tactics


14th French Hussar Regiment, 1813

By: Markus Stein and Edmund Wagner

Translator:  Justin Howard

This article previously appeared in Issue 3 of the German-language magazine Depesche, which is published by our partner, Napoleon Online. We appreciate the kindness of the editor, Markus Stein, for giving us permission to publish the translation.

Introduction

Several figures from a previously unknown portrait are to be reproduced under the heading Elsässer Bilderhandschrift (Alsatian Picture Manuscript). According to Herbert Knötel the artist of the original portrait was an Alsatian who participated as a soldier in all of Napoleon’s major campaigns. The manuscript was handed down from generation to generation until, sometime before the Second World War, Herbert Knötel eventually managed to make copies of some – though not all – of the figures.  He distributed these copies amongst selected members of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Heereskunde (German Society of Military History), but in doing so neglected once again to name their origin. Herbert Knötel must also have used his copies of the manuscript as a reference in correspondence with fellow collectors, because some of the figures, reproduced and coloured by R. Forthofer, are known. In addition, the manuscript was the subject of an article in the Carnet de la Sabretache, although attributed to an anonymous German source (probably Herbert Knötel, not wanting to be named). Unfortunately, this is the only information regarding the manuscript which is available to us today, but maybe one of the Depesche readers can help further.

At the moment, we are preparing a list of the figures known to be contained in the manuscript; once the list is completed we will include it in a future issue of Depesche. It is worth noting here that the figures which were presented in the “From the Archive” articles in Issues 1 and 2 of Depesche were also taken from the manuscript.

Finally, I would particularly like to thank the Wehrgeschichtliches Museum Rastatt, which gave us permission to publish the manuscript, thus allowing the very interesting figures it contains to be made available to the public.

 

14th Hussars in 1814

Description of the Plate

Figure A: Officer with standard

Scarlet shako; silver-coloured lace band around the upper edge; black peak, black neck curtain; cockade in the national colours; silver-coloured loop with silver button; silver-coloured cords; silver-coloured pompom; white plume with green tip; silver-coloured chin-chain.

Green dolman; scarlet collar and cuffs; silver-coloured lace; silver-coloured frogging; brass buttons.

Green pelisse; silver-coloured frogging; brass buttons; white fur lining.

Scarlet trousers with silver-coloured lace.

Black boots with silver spurs.

Crimson woollen sash with silver-coloured loops.

Beige-coloured gloves.

White cartridge-box belt; black cartridge box with silver eagle.

Black sheepskin shabraque with green wolf’s tooth edging; green valise with silver-coloured lace and number; red saddle girth; red reins.

Brass sabre-scabbard.

Tricolour standard, i.e. blue at the stave, then white, with red at the fly edge ; golden embroidery and fringes; blue/white/red ribbons with gold ornamentation; golden cords with golden tassels; brown flag stave; black ferrule.

White horse.

Figure B: Trumpeter

Scarlet shako; white lace band around the upper edge; black peak and neck curtain; cockade in the national colours; white loop with white button; white-metal chin-chain; white cords; white pompom; white plume with green tip.

Green pelisse; white frogging; brass buttons; lace in imperial livery (see the detail on the accompanying figure), i.e. green and yellow fields with red border.

Red trousers; black reinforcing; green lace on the outer seam and on the pocket flap; brass buttons.

Black boots with iron spurs.

Beige-coloured gloves.

Iron sabre-scabbard; white barrel sash.

Brass trumpet; trumpet cord interwoven green/yellow with tassels.

Black sheepskin shabraque with green wolf’s tooth border; green valise with white lace and number; white cloak strapped on top; grey saddle girth; black bridle; stirrup straps from a light-coloured leather; iron stirrups.

Figure C: Hussar

Shako as figure B.

Green dolman; scarlet collar and cuffs; white frogging; white lace; brass buttons.

Green pelisse; white frogging; white lace; brass buttons; black fur lining.

Crimson woollen sash with white loops; white cords and tassels.

Trousers as figure B.

Boots as figure B.

Beige-coloured gloves.

White cartridge-box belt.

Iron sabre-scabbard; white barrel sash.

Brown carbine with brass fittings.

Whitish sheepskin shabraque with green wolf’s tooth border; green valise with white lace and number; off-white cloak strapped on top; black bridle; stirrup straps from light-coloured leather; iron stirrups.

Detail of the Lace on the Imperial Livery

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: October 2010

 

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