Military Subjects: Organization, Strategy & Tactics


Garde du Directoire 1795

Composition of the Garde 1796

Administrative Council 1797

Qualifications

Gardes des Consuls 1799

Gardes des Consuls, Late 1799

Bibliography


Napoleon's Imperial Guard: 1792 - 1815

Part One: The Organization: 1792 - 1800

By Tony Broughton and J. F. Broughton

 

Introduction

Garde de la Convention

Garde de la Convention

The most famous unit in the Napoleonic Wars was Napoleon's Imperial Guard. The story of the Garde in France spans many centuries, almost all the Kings and Queens in French history had a guard in one form or other. The Imperial Guards' history begins in 1789 with the formation of the Gardes de la Prevote de l'Hotel, their task being to guard the Royal Residences.

After the guard joined the National Assembly, their title changed to the Garde de l'Assemblée Nationale on 20 June 1789, but two years later on 10 May 1791, they became the Comagnie de la Prevote. Then they were renamed the Gendarmes Nationaux, but this formation lasted only five days before becoming the Grenadiers-Gendarmes pres de la Representation Nationale on the 15th May 1791. In the space of five days they had four different names. It was decided to expand this force and on 22 July 1795 it was renamed the Grenadiers pres la Representation Nationale shortened to the Gardes de la Convention. With the dissolution of the Convention on 26h October 1795 and the introduction of the Corps Legislatif, the Garde de la Convention became the Garde du Corps Legislatif (28th October 1795) and comprised one thousand two hundred men nominated by the Directory.

The Directory decided in November 1795 to form a Guard, its function being to act as Garde d'Honneur to the Directory and provide protection to its members. Each Director was to have two guards to protect him. The title given to this force was Garde du Directoire and it was formally established on the 4th October 1796, the force was to consist of 120 Infantry and 120 cavalry. The guard was to consist of the following:

 

Garde du Directoire: 1795

Staff

1 Officier General Commandent-en-Chief

1 Commandent-en-second

2 Aides-de-Camp

4 Adjutants

1 Quartier-Maitre Tresorier

1 Chirurgien-Major

1 Maitre Tailleur

1 Maitre Cordionnier-Bottier

1 Maitre Armurier

1 Maitre Sellier

1 Maitre Eperonnier

1 Tambour-Major

There were to be two Companies of Grenadiers-a-Pied, along with a small staff organised in the following manner.

Grenadiers-a-Pied

Staff

Company Organization

1 Chef de Bataillon

1 Captaine

1 Porte Drapeaux

1 Lieutenant

1 Sous-Lieutenant

1 Sergeant Major

2 Sergeants

1 Caporal-Fourrier

4 Caporaux

2 Tambours

41 Gardes

Giving a total compliment for Staff and Two Companies of 112 men.

Gardes-a-Cheval

Staff

Company Organization

1 Chef d'Escadron

1 Captaine

1 Porte Drapeaux

1 Lieutenant

1 Sous-Lieutenant

1 Marechal- des-Logis chef

2 Marecheaux-des-Logis

1 Brigadier-fourrier

4 Brigadiers

2 Trompettes

1 Marechal-ferrant

41 Gardes

Giving a total compliment for Staff and Two Companies of 112 men.

Total compliment for Staff, two companies of Grenadiers-a-Pied, and two companies of Garde a Cheval being 242 men.

 

Garde du Directoire

Garde du Directoire

Composition of the Garde: 1796

On 28 November 1796, the men who were to comprise the Garde were:

Staff
Commandant en Chef: General of Division: Krieg (Jean-Ernest)

Commandant en Second : General of Brigade: Jube

Aides de Camp to commandant en Chef: Lefebvre and Dumoustier.

Adjutants: Fuzy, Beranger, and Walker

Quartier - maitre tresorier: Moreau.

Chirurgien - major: Dudonjon

Maitre tailleur: Hanchar

Maitre cordonnier - bottier: Bonival

Mait armur - eperonnier: Lermigne

Maitre sellier: Lacour (Francois)

Garde-a-Pied

Staff

Chef de Bataillon (Major): Dubois(Antione)

Porte-Drapeaux: Lemarois (Rene)

1er Compagnie

Captain: Magnie

Lieutenant: Chevallard

Sous-Lieutenant: Castille

Sergent-Major: Anclaux (Joseph)

Sergents: Caullier (Louis) and Tournier (Octave)

Caporaux: Beaulieu (Christophe), Delauzy (Louis), Dessigues (Francois) and

Malraison (Jean)

Grenadiers:

Barberdine (Jacque)

Dubanton (Joseph)

Lecerq (Baptiste)

Baudry (Guillaume)

Dufour (Joseph)

Lessure (Francois)

Baudry ?

Dunouvion (Baptiste)

Lieban (Pierre)

Botte (Pierre)

Duseiller (Jacques)

Merlin (Pierre)

Bausseur (Martin)

Francois (Claude)

Moutay (Jean)

Buire (Louis)

Gauthier (Francoois)

Morel (Germain)

Bizot (Medan)

Gueriaut (Joseph)

Mosa (Vincent)

Carriere (Constant)

Herlet (Pierre)

Pesteau (Julien)

Cheval (Charles)

Laissant (Charles)

Reymond (Joseph)

Cretien (Jacques)

Lassalle (Francois)

Roy (Benoit)

Courtein (Jean)

Laurie (Claude)

Vaunin (Jean)

Davial (Louis)

Leclerc (Louis)

Voyer (Arnoud)

 2e Compagnie

Captain: Humbert

Lieutenant: Audoin

Sous-Lieutenant: Grimbert

Sergent-Major: Raubardy (Pierre)

Sergents: Collot (Etienne) and Munschy(Joseph)

Caporaux: Aubert(Pierre) , Aubry (Victor) , Lambert (Francois) and Tillier (Jean)

Grenadiers:

Bailleui (Toussaint)

Deinse (Nicolas)

Lyonnay (Louis)

Barbier (Adrien)

Drigny (Louis)

Maisonneuve (Jean)

Bauceron (Martin)

Fleury (Pierre)

Meunier (Pierre)

Bauduin (Pierre)

Fossay (Louis)

Montalon (Guillaume)

Beridi (Joseph)

Gauchet (Gilles)

Olie (Claude)

Bodereau (Sylvain)

Gaudin (Theodore)

Poisson (Joseph)

Boheim (Jean)

Gerard (Jean)

Gueval (Francois)

Champagne (Victor)

Giblin (Phillipe)

Reboul (Louis)

Cornette (Etienne)

Joannes (Gabrielle)

Rousseau (Pierre)

Deboul (Bernard)

Laforge (Etienne)

Thousin (Amable)

Defiesme (Simon)

Lambourg (Louis)

Traite (Pierre)

Delatre (Baptiste)

Lefel (Martin)

Demourant (Jean)

Legay (Charles)

Tambours

Tambour-Major : Bonner (Martin)

Laurent (Francois) , Lemaire (Louis) , Robillard (Francois) and Senet (Phillipe)

Gardes-a-Cheval

Staff

Chef d'Escadron : Aubineau-Duplessis.

Porte-Drapeaux : Terreau (Bernard)

 1er Escadron

Capitaine: Dulac (Joseph)

Lieutenant: Guillotin.

Sous-Lieutenant: Bourdon.

Marechal-des-Logis Chef: Parrassol (Jerome)

Marechaux-des-Logis: Coquillon (Antoine) , Rusidant (Jacques)

Brigadiers: Brellion (Valentin), Latille (Bernard), Leroy (Alexandre)

and Lucas (Francois)

Gardes-a-Cheval:

Baboeure (Benjamin)

Francaux (Baptiste)

Mont-Voisin (Michel)

Bigot (Antoine)

Grenier (Claude)

Paturel (?)

Boquillon (Joseph)

Henriot (Etienne)

Raymond (Louis)

Boquet (?)

Huyot (Michel)

Raye (Louis)

Brugasse (Claude)

Joachim (?)

Sarleley (Etienne)

Cariche (Jean)

Joannes (Sylvestre)

Savard (Charles)

Carron (Pierre)

Lacroix (Francois)

Sergent (Joseph)

Cavalier (?)

Laurent (?)

Simon (?)

Classe (Procope)

Legrand (Nicolas)

Sombret (Isidore)

Cottart (Louis)

Longchamps (Charles)

Vassagne (Jean)

Dupuis (?)

Milhomme (Francois)

Verry (?)

2e Escadron

Capitaine: Auge

Lieutenant: Payen

Sous-Lieutenants: Colin

Marechal des Logis Chef: La Blanchi (Antoine)

Marechaux des Logis: Glachaut (Felix), Pierre (Laurent)

Brigadiers: Bernard (Francois), Denoncin (Baptiste), Lietard (Seraphin)

and Perrin (Louis)

Gardes-a-Cheval:

Barbier (Joseph)

Flamand (Francois)

Martin (Alexis)

Bassinet (?)

Gendarme (?)

Michel (?)

Bonnet (?)

Gerard (Joseph)

Miquelet (Germain)

Boquillon (Jean)

Goze (?)

Moisy (?)

Breton (?)

Hossenec (Baptiste)

Mourcy (?)

Brocq (Louis)

Joly (Laurent)

Patin (Georges)

Calmeau (?)

Kermasson (Francois)

Rouget (?)

Courable (Arnoud)

Kinclin (?)

Seenue (Pierre)

Decant (?)

Lacroix (Jean)

Soyer (Nicolas)

Delambre (?)

Lapierre (?)

Tagny (Joseph)

Dommagne (Louis)

Lefebvre (Alexandre)

Vamont(?)

Dubuisson (Louis)

Lotiquet (?)

Verlet (Pierre)

Duverchy (?)

Malfusoz (?)

 Trompettes

Audelin (Georges), Bergeret (Christophe), Louis (Francois), and Tissot (Valentin)

The Musicians

On the 26th December 1796 it was decreed that the musicians of the Legion de Police should be attached to the Garde du Directoire. In May 1797 the compliment comprised:

Chef de Musique: Fairu-Guiardel - First Clarinet

Bannes Cadet: First Cornet

Barley (Joseph): First Clarinet

Legros (Pierre): First Cornet

Francois aine (?): First Clarinet

Kretly (Louis): First Flute

Nieu (Pierre): First Clarinet

Letellier (Jacques): Second Flute

Chocuel (Charles): First Clarinet

Bannes aine (?): First Bassoon

Francois jeune: Second Clarinet

Schiminch (Adam): First Bassoon

Charrier (Xavier): Second Clarinet

Legros (Nicolas): Second Bassoon

Sponheimer (Gotliche): Second Clarinet

Venderburg (Joseph: Second Bassoon

Garreau (?): Second Clarinet

Mine (Laurent): Second Bassoon

Michel (Joseph): Second Clarinet

Bannes (Mathieu): Trombone

Louichard (Jean): First Cornet

Drapeau (Baptiste): Cymbals

Blet (Pierre): First Cornet

Suret (Honore): Big Drum

 

The Administrative Council: 1797

The Administrative Council for the Garde du Directoire would consist of seven members:

 President : Commandant-en-Chef

Commandent-en-Second

Adjutant

Chef de Bataillon

Chef d'Escadron

Two Capitaines of each arm, Infantry and Cavalry

 

Qualifications for Entering the Garde

Officers were to be at least five feet-eight inches tall and twenty five years old. NCO's were to be at least five feet-eleven inches tall. All were to have served in at least two campaigns

 

Garde des Consuls: 1799

Within eighteen days of the Coup d'Etat of Brumaire a decision was taken that a new force should be created. On the 11th November 1799, it was decided to merge the Garde du Directoire with the Garde du Corps Legislatif and to reinforce it where necessary. Its title was to be the Garde des Consuls. A decree was issued on the 28th November 1799 that the force would consist of

One Company Infantry Legere

Two Battalions Grenadier a Pied

One Company Chasseurs-a-Cheval

Two Squadrons Grenadiers a Cheval

One Company Artillery Legere

 The full breakdown of the Gardes des Consuls being:

 Staff

1 General de Division, Commandent-en-Chef et Inspectuer

1 General de Brigade, Commandent-en-Second

4 Aides-de-Camp

1 Adjudant General (in charge of administration and service)

8 Adjudants superieurs (4 Chefs-de-Brigade and 4 Chefs-de-Bataillon or d'Escadron)

6 Adjoints aux Adjudants generaux

1 Commissaire Ordonnateur

1 Commissaire des Guerres

1. Quartier-Maitre Tresorier (Chef de Bataillon or Chef d'Escadron)

50 Musiciens, with (1. Chef and 1 Sous-Chef, 25 mounted, and 25 Foot)

2 Ecrvains

The two Bataillons a Pied would consist of six Companies and the Company Legere would be the same.

Grenadiers-a-Pied

1 Chef-de-Brigade

2 Chef-de-Bataillon

2 Adjudant-Majors-Capitaines

2 Adjudant-Majors-Lieutenants

2 Porte-Drapeau

2 Chirurgiens de Premiere Classe

1 Maitre Armurier

1 MaitreTaileur

1 Maitre Cordonier

1 Maitre Guetrier

1 Tambour-Major

2 Corporaux -Tambours

Company Formation

1 Capitaine

1 Lieutenant

1 Sous-Lieutenant

1 Sergent-Major

4 Sergents

1 Fourrier

8 Corporaux

80 Grenadiers

2 Tambours

The Infanterie Legere Company formation would be exactly the same as a Grenadier Company.

Gardes-a-Cheval

Staff

1 Chef-de-Brigade

5 Chefs d'Escadron

1 Capitaine-Adjudant-Major

1 Capitaine-Quartier-Maitre-Tresorier

1 Capitaine-Instructeur

5 Adjudants.

5 Porte-Etendard

2 Chirurgiens

1 Maitre Tailleur

1 Maitre Sellier

1 Maitre Bottier

1 Maitre Armurier

1 Maitre Eperonnier

1 Maitre Culottier

1 Trompette-Major

1 Brigadier-Trompette

Grenadier-a-Cheval Escadron, Company formation

1 Capitaine

1 Lieutenant en Premier

1 Lieutenant en Second

1 Sous-Lieutenant

1 Marechal-des-Logis Chef

4 Marechaux-des-Logis

1 Fourrier

8 Brigadiers

96 Grenadiers-a-Cheval.

1 Marechal-Ferrant

2 Trompettes

The Chasseur-a-Cheval Company formation would be the same as the Grenadiers-a-Cheval, two Companys to each Squadron.

Artillerie Legere

1 Capitaine Commandant

1 Capitaine-en-Second

1 Lieutenant-en-Premier

1 Lieutenant-en-Second

1 Adjudant Sous-Officier

1 Maerchal-des-Logis Chef

4 Marechaux-des-Logis

1 Fourrier

4 Brigadiers

40 Cannoniers 1er Classe.

52 Cannoniers 2e Classe

2 Trompettes

The Garde des Consuls First Commander was General de Division Murat and his full title was Commandent-en -Chef and Inspecteur general of the Gardes des Consuls de la Republique. His appointment began on 2 November 1799, but did not last long. At the end of 1799 the Garde des Consuls contained 2089 men.

When Napoleon became First Consul he wrote that his plans for the Garde were for it to become the model of the Army and he would permit admission to the Guard any person who through his actions or wounds or by experience gained in many campaigns, his bravery and love of their country; their attachment to discipline and their good conduct.

The minimum requirements being , they must be no less than 25 years old, between 5 foot 10 inches and 6 foot in height. They must have participated in three campaigns in the wars of liberty and be able to read and write.

nbsp;

Gardes des Consuls at the End of 1799

Staff
Cmmandent-en-Chef: General-de-Division Lannes (Jean)

Commandent-en-Second: General-de-Brigade Bessieres (Jean-Baptiste)

Aides-des-Camp: Riviere, Beaumont, Nogues, and Didier

Adjudant-General: Caffarelli

Adjudants superieurs, Chefs de Brigade: Beranger, Fuzy, Ponsard, and Blanchard

Adjudants superieurs, Chefs d'Escadron: Dubois, Oelhert, Humbert, and Auger

Adjudants: Lefebvre, Dumoustiers, Clement, Regnault, Lenoir, and Freyre

Commissaire Ordonateur: Dubreton

Commissaire des Guerres: Charamond

Quartier-Maitre-Tresorier: Moreau

Ecrivains: Verry and Dimayo

Grenadiers-a-Pied

Chef-de-Brigade: Frere (Bernard-George-Francois)

Chefs-de-Bataillon: Soules (1st Bataillon) and Tortel (2nd Bataillon)

Adjudant-Major-Capitaines: Barbe and Pierron

Adjudant - Sous-Lieutenants: Flamand and Faucon

Porte-Drapeau: Leon-Aune and Morlay

Chirurgiens: Marigues and Dudoujon

1er Bataillon

1er Compagnie
Capitaine: Charpentier

Lieutenant: Carre

Sous-Lieutenants: Bourdillet, Descombe

2e Compagnie

Capitaine: Lemarrois

Lieutenant: Davignon

Sous-Lieutenants: Brousse, Villemeureux

3e Compagnie.

Capitaine: Magne

Lieutenant: Viel

Sous-Lieutenants: Redon, Demoulins

4e Compagnie

Capitaine: Theure

Lieutenant: Guyon

Sous-Lieutenants: Flaeurentin, Boutin

 5e Compagnie

Capitaine: Lajonquierre

Lieutenant: Vezu

Sous-Lieutenants: Boudin, Ciron

 6e Compagnie

Capitaine: Leroy

Lieutenant: Larousse

Sous-Lieutenants: Basin, Dornier

 2e Bataillon

1er Compagnie
Capitaine: Ragois

Lieutenant: Dutrone

Sous-Lieutenants: Henry, Deneuilly

2e Compagnie

Capitaine: Parsis

Lieutenant: Guillemard

Sous-Lieutenants: Delvolvee, Lemaitre

 3e Compagnie

Capitaine: Bernelle

Lieutenant: Hasse

Sous-Lieutenants: Dunoyer, Pilate

 4e Compagnie

Capitaine: Richard

Lieutenant: Favre

Sous-Lieutenants: Blondeau, Aubert

 5e Compagnie

Capitaine: Chery

Lieutenant: Chautard

Sous-Lieutenants: Mellier, Bouhour

6e Compagnie

Capitaine: Mayer

Lieutenant: Rouvoire

Sous-Lieutenant: Dufour, Laurede

It should be noted that whilst only one Sous-Lieutenant is authorized, Emile Marco de Saint-Hilaire gives two in his publication Histoire, Anecdotes, Politique et Militaire de la Garde Imperial. I believe that the last person named is in fact the Sergeant-Major of the Company.

 Infanterie Legre Compagnie
Capitaine: Schobert

Lieutenant: Caire

Sous-Lieutenant: Bouzou

Garde a Cheval.

Chef de Brigade: Ordener (Michel)

Chefs d'Escadrons des Grenadiers: Oulie, Herbault, and Guiton

Chefs d'Escadron des Chasseurs: Beauharnais and Hercule

Capitaine Quartier-Maitre-Tresorier: Perrot

Capitaine Adjudant-Major: Darmann

Capitaine Instructeur: Parisot

Adjudants Sous-Lieutenants des Grenadiers: Desmichels, Chassin, and Perlus

Adjudants Sous-Lieutenants des Chasseurs: Rabusson and Joannes

Porte-Entendards des Grenadiers: Coquillon, Latille, and Leveque

Porte-Entendards des Chasseurs: Legros and Guibert

Officier de Sante 1er Classe: David

Officier de Sante 2e Classe: Diecme

 1er Escadron Grenadiers a Cheval

1er Compagnie
Capitaine: Dubignon

1ere Lieutenant: Segauville

2es Lieutenant: Lajoie

Sous-Lieutenant: Ricarde

 2e Compagnie

Capitaine: Monfrois

1ere Lieutenant: Colin

2es Lieutenant: Gambet

Sous-Lieutenant: Duvivier

 2e Escadron Grenadiers-a-Cheval

 3e Compagnie
Capitaine: Bourdon

1ere Lieutenant: Guillaume

2es Lieutenant: Dujon

Sous-Lieutenant: Burgraff

 4e Compagnie

Capitaine: Clement

1ere Lieutenant: Lahuberdiere

2es Lieutenant: Auzoni

Sous-Lieutenant: Glachaut

 3e Escadron Grenadiers-a-Cheval

 5e Compagnie
Capitaine: Rossignol

1ere Lieutenant: Clerc

2es Lieutenant: Vicien

Sous-Lieutenant: Croisier

 6e Compagnie

Capitaine: Holdrinet

1ere Lieutenant: Lignier

2es Lieutenant: Messier

Sous-Lieutenant: Bourde

 1er Escadron Chasseurs-a-Cheval

 1er Compagnie
Capitaine: Beurmann

1ere Lieutenant: Montbrun

2es Lieutenant: Schmit

Sous-Lieutenant: Martin

2e Compagnie

Capitaine: Triaire

1ere Lieutenant: Rebout

2es Lieutenant: Davranges

Sous-Lieutenant: Colonnier

 2e Escadron Chasseurs-a-Cheval

3e Compagnie
Capitaine: Delacroix

1ere Lieutenant: France

2es Lieutenant: Guyot

Sous-Lieutenant: Muzi

4e Compagnie

Capitaine: Dominique

1ere Lieutenant: Bureau

2es Lieutenant: Fournier

Sous-Lieutenant: Dubois

Artillerie Legere

Capitaine Commandant: Coin

Capitaines-en-Second: Daugereau and Dijeon

Lieutenants-en-Premier: Chauveau and Marin

Lieutenant-en-Second: Berthier

 

Bibliography

Brown, Anne S.K. The Anatomy of Glory London : Lund Humphries; 1962.

Brunon, Jean. Grenadiers de Napoleon, La Garde des Consuls, La Garde Imperiale du Premiere Empire, La Garde Imperiale du Second Empire Paris : Les Presses des Ateliers d'Impressins d'Art; 1955.

Dupont, Marcel: Guides de Bonaparte et Chasseur a Cheval de la Garde Imperiale Paris : Les Editions Militaire Illustree; 1946.

Fallou Louis. La Garde Imperial 1804-1815 Paris : La Giberne; 1902.

Fieffe, Eugene: Napoleon 1er et la Garde Imperiale Paris : Furne Fils;1859.

Lachouque, Henry. Napoleon et la Garde Imperiale Paris : Bloud et Gay; 1957.

Saint-Hilaire, Marco de. Histoire, anecdotique,politique et militaire de la Garde Imperial Paris : Eugene et Victor Penaud Freres; 1847.

Nafziger, George. The Consular and Imperial Guard Privately published.

Placed on the Napoleon Series: March, 2000

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