The Prussian-Saxon Army at Jena: 14 October 1806
Many of the online and published sources relating to Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen’s and Ruchel’s divisional organization on 14 October are incomplete, misleading and/or contradictory. Previous re-organization after the defeats of Generalmajor von Tauentzein at the Engagement of Schliez (8 October) and Generalleutnant Louis-Ferdinand, Prinz von Prussen at the Battle of Saalfeld (10 October) adds to the historical uncertainty. In addition, Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen’s jumbled, bi-national Order-of-Battle and his scattered unit deployment prior to Napoleon’s attack make accurate secondary-source research a difficult task.
In contrast to La Grande Armee, the majority of the divisions in the
Royal Prussian Army of 1806 contained organic heavy-cavalry brigades.
While the cuirassier and dragoon regiments of these brigades gave Prussian
divisional commanders additional ‘weight,’ the scattering of these regiments
made it very difficult to co-ordinate effective, large-scale cavalry
charges (one of the factors which later contributed to the Prussian
defeat at the Battle of Auerstadt).
Estimates of Hohenlohe-Inglefingen’s Prussian-Saxon army on 14 October usually range from 50 battalions, 74 squadrons and 12 ½ batteries [37,000 men] to 50 battalions, 77 squadrons and 15 batteries [46,500 men] -- with between 74 and 120 guns. Some sources cite his total strength as high as 53,000 men. Many of these estimates do not include Ruchel’s Corps, which, although it fought at Jena, was a separate command. Ruchel is believed to have arrived on the battlefield with 12,000-15,000 troops.
Two Prussian formations in the theatre of operations were not present at either Jena or Auerstadt: the Prussian General Reserve Corps (15,000 men in 18 battalions, 20 squadrons and 4 batteries under Generalleutnant Eugen-Friedrich-Heinrich, Herzog von Wurttemberg-Stuttgart) and the main army’s ‘Advanced Guard’ detachment at Ilmenau (9 battalions, 20 squadrons and 2 batteries under General der Kavallerie Karl-August, Herzog von Sachsen-Weimar). Wurttemberg’s troops were defeated on 17 October by elements of Marshal Jean-Baptiste-Jules Bernadotte’s corps at the Battle of Halle; Sachsen-Weimar’s command -- subsequently commanded by Generalleutnant Christian-Ludwig von Winning – surrendered to French forces on 7 November at Ratekau.
Prussian-Saxon Army: 49 battalions, 77 squadrons and 12 batteries
Hohenlohe-Ingelfingen, General der Infanterie Friedrich-Ludwig, Erbprinz zu; Commander
Massenbach, Oberst Christian-Karl-August-Ludwig, Freiherr von; Chief-of-Staff*
* Some sources list Oberst Eberhard-Friedrich-Fabian, Freiherr von Massenbach holding this staff position.
Placed on the Napoleon Series: July 2004
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