The 1799 Campaign in Italy: The Last Battles & the End of the Directory’s Wars August-December 1799
By Enrico Acerbi
The Revolt of the Army and the Clash at Torriglia
On December 5, at Nice, the 3rd Chasseurs received orders to leave for Hyères but the cavalrymen, having not had their wages since eight months, rioted saying they would marched only after having received their pay. Championnet, personally reviewd the situation but the Chasseurs became so rude with their Chief, that he was forced to disband the regiment and to change its number. Of the 3rd Chasseurs remained only some companies of 15 men each (officers included). The men were sent to the Navy and the horses divided between the 10th Hussars and the 14th Chasseurs. On December 17, the 63rd Line infantry and the 17th Light infantry (Lemoine’s Division) left Millesimo and Cosseria positions, returning with flags and drums to Nice. They were followed by the 10th, 34th, and the 105th Line, and on the day after Christmas, by the 24th Line, 14th and 68th Line (Miollis’ Division). The mass desertions spread throughout the Ligurian territory, with troops leaving their positions in perfect march order and with their officers abandoned in the trenches, defending the lines.
While in this deep trouble, St.Cyr found the time to win his last battle in the Riviera. The first attack, however, was organized by Prince Hohenzollern. On December 6, the Austrians attacked Novi with Colonel Frimont’s Brigade (the Fröhlich Regiment and two 5th Hussars squadrons) causing a fast French retreat, without any resistance. Six Bussy Jäger squadrons and one Klebek Battalion pursued the French until Gavi. The fort was surrounded and some Austrian patrols harassed the enemies driving toward Borgo dei Fornari, in order to cause fatigue and alarm the Bocchetta detachment.
Mélas had previously weakened Hohenzollern’s Division sending 6 of his battalions to Reggio, under General Eder [i], which had orders to join General Fröhlich in the Papal States; this task force was formed also by the Cavalry brigade Nobili. The commander- In-Chief, however, agreed with the prince’s idea for a trial to capture Genoa by surprise; so he substituted the six battalions sent to Reggio with other six units of the main army. Klenau was aware of Hohenzollern’s plan against la Bocchetta (the x-day was fixed for the 15th of December) and prepared himself to attack Genoa from the East. He gathered his troops at Chiavari (December 12) advancing through Cicagna and Rapallo.
On December 14, General Klenau, deployed along the Lavagna valley, attacked the weak Miollis force at dawn, hitting Sori, Monte Cornua and Torriglia. The offensive plan foresaw an ascent on Mount Cornua,[ii] (also known as Monte Corona), made by light troops. The first attempt by D’Aspre’s Brigade was made on December 14 but the climbing was so difficult that only a small force made it to drive out the French. The attack was repeated on the 15th with Croatians of the 2nd Banal Battalion and the Piedmontese Jäger Battalion Von Brentano. With great sacrifice the troops climbed the slopes and went over all defensive obstacles built by the French. It was a success, the steep Monte Cornua was climbed by the Jäger; they conquered the top and forced the opponents to withdraw and to rally at Nervi, and 100 French were made prisoners.
In the meanwhile, the attacks on the center continued. Major Paulich marched through Scoffera up to the top of Monte Capenardo. The first Klenau’s Column seized easily the village of Torriglia, while the second column advanced along the coast and the Corniche road toward Nervi.
As said, Klenau’s attack had to be supported by the intervention of Hohenzollern, who had to advance from Novi and to assault la Bocchetta Pass. The right flank of Klenau, however, remained motionless. In fact, Hohenzollern, who was waiting for the six Battalions promised by Mélas, had intended to do only diversionary attacks, at least until the arrival of his reinforcements.[iii] By December 15, however, the repeated assaults of Klenau had driven away the French under the Genoa walls and the combats lasted till the night. Klenau had had a generic Genoese agreement (General Assereto ?) according to which, seeing the Austrians near and once caught up the city doors, the Genoese civilians would have begun to riot and would have dropped the Republican garrison outdoors. In Genoa, however, nothing occurred.
On December 16, well before dawn, Klenau observed a French column marching on Monte Creto. They hit frontally Major Paulich’s troops, to whom had been charged the task to link with Hohenzollern and were still were on Mount Capenardo. Paulich was overrun and severely wounded, falling prisoner with a large part of his troops. The French column then drove toward Scoffera and Torriglia, threatening the flank and the rear of the Austrian detachment. This forced Klenau to lead personally a column in the Bisagno Valley, to intercept the French. He engaged the French at Scoffera but they (General Watrin’s column) gained Mount Portello, near Torriglia, which Klenau was forced to cross. When this occurred, Klenau was charged with bayonets and requested to surrender. His answer was a counterattack, meter after meter, on every bit of ground and obstacle, a violent melée occured, and after six hours of chaos, the French were routed. Part of the French went back to Genoa and part recovered in the Scrivia Valley. Klenau rallied his soldiers at Davagna and returned in full order to Chiavari. The only support Hohenzollern had granted to that unlucky operation was to deploy four field artillery batteries at Gavi and to send some patrols ahead, which reached the Genoa walls in reconnaissance. Along the coast, however, all the French right wing was directed against the opponent troops and the Austrians were forced to retreat. At Sestri a French attack was frontal and decisive, because Klenau had no more troops to commit (only 250 Jägers and a Grenz Battalion remained as the outpost). The Austrian General abandoned the Levante and recovered to La Spezia, organizing there the remnants of his Corps: an “Unterstützung” reserve at La Spezia and the main body at Sarzana. The Austrians fought well, routed the French in the center but lost the battle and over 1200 men, wounded or prisoners (Austrians sources gave higher numbers: 92 dead, 240 wounded, 1795 prisoners).
At last the Austrians organized their winter-quarters also in Riviera and in the Novi sector. The link between Klenau and Hohenzollern remained at Ottone; the Hohenzollern’s outposts were at Rocchetta, Arquata, Gavi, San Cristoforo, Rocca Grimalda (Ovada) till Spigno where they linked with the Elsnitz vanguards.
The Typhus Epidemic from Nice to Genoa and the Chief’s Death
What really gave the final blow to an army, already condemned to death, were the epidemic diseases. The city of Nice, now in France , was hit by a terrible epidemic, caused by the evacuation of the military hospitals. Thousands of wounded patients, weakened by the lack of food, laid packed one near the other along the sea coast. Nice became the main reception area of the infection. The epidemic soon caught also the civilians; the corpses multiplied to such a point, as there was no more enough space for burials. This plague began its devastation in Nice by the middle of October 1799; it increased gradually in violence and pestilence, reaching its zenith at the end of January 1800, while beginning to decline in March. The people gave it the terrific name of plague, but it was typhus fever, born among the wounded and spread from hospitals. The symptoms of the disease, usually, were preceded by a violent headache, followed by vomit, shaking shivers and high fever with delirium; the more the constitution of the affected people was strong, the more its progress was fast and violent.
At the end of 1799, the army command was given to the renowned General André Masséna, who had saved the Directory at the battle of Zürich. The veteran chief agreed with some doubt (he remained two weeks in Paris searching for money to help the army of Italy ) … thinking at the absolute lack of supplies, at the renewed bravery of the “barbets” now against very weak enemies, at that Typhus pestilence. The old Chief waited for his successor at Sospello, then fell sick and asked to be carried at Nice. For eight days the medical staff of the capital hoped to rescue Championnet, but on the 9th day came the delirium. The general continued asking if the vessels full of grain had disembarked the supplies at Marseille, sometimes crying and saying “the soldiers need them … need them”. He sat up on the bed asking if the ships had carried money, clothes, if the soldiers had had their wages, if they had routed the Austrians …”let us leave Nice” he said “this town will be deadly for us … rather I’ll prefer to die, if I must do so, like Joubert on the battlefield. Poor my mother, she will not survive to this sorrow … I implore you to console her, and to give the new with caution to my father …”
The old warrior of the Alps and of the armée d’Italie, he who had conquered Rome and Naples, died, on January 9, 1800, not for the pain and the shame of his last defeats, like someone for a long time continued to assert, but because of a Typhus fever. His body was to be carried to Paris, at the Pantheon, but the decay was so rapid, that the corpse had to be buried in Antibes, into the Fort-Carré where Championnet had his final rest. Not too far, at Valence, his native town, someone erected a monument to him.
The Officers of the armée d’Italie
December 22, 1799 (I nivose an VIII) – Armée d’Italie Officers employed
Chief Commander General Jean Étienne Vachier, called Championnet
Général de division Louis Gabriel Suchet, Chief of Staff
Généraux de division
Jean-Marie-Vital Ramey Comte de Sugny: artillery commander
Sextius Alexandre François de Miollis
Jean Antoine Marbot
Claude Victor-Perrin called Victor
Ian Henryk Dąbrowsky: Pole
Laurent Gouvion de Saint-Cyr: dismissed convalescence
François Watrin: in permission
Pierre Garnier de Laboissière: prisoner of war (???)
Philibert Guillaume Duhesme: dismissed convalescence
Honoré Louis Auguste Massol de Monteil (Massol): under trial at Valence
Jean-Joseph Guieux or Guieu: dismissed convalescence
Jacques-Bernard-Modeste D’Anselme: in the 7th military territorial division
Jean Augustin Ernouf: Infantry Inspector at Aix
Maurice Mathieu: dismissed convalescence
Jean Louis Pellapra: without employment at Grenoble
Louis Charles Vincent Le Blond de Saint-Hilaire (St.Hilaire): commander of the 8th military territorial division
Bon Adrien Jeannot de Moncey: commander of the 19th military territorial division
Jean-Baptiste Cervoni: in permission at Toulon.
Pietro Maria Ferino (Italian): commander of the 7th military territorial division
Catherine-Dominique de Perignon: prisoner of war
Emmanuel Marquis de Grouchy: prisoner of war
François-Dominique Rusca: prisoner of war
Raphael de Casabianca: never arrived
Soult: never arrived
Gazan: never arrived
Mengaud: never arrived
Ménard: never arrived
Oudinot: never arrived
Généraux de brigade
François-Jean-Baptiste Quesnel du Torpt (Quesnel)
baron Charles-Louis-Dieu Donné Grandjean
Henri-François-Marie Charpentier: wounded
Pierre Poinsot de Chansac (Poinsot)
Marc-Antoine Beaumont comte de la Bonninière ( Beaumont): commander of a cavalry division
Pierre-Edme Gautherin o Gauthrin: provisional
Isaac-Jacques Delart-Campagnol (Campanol)
Joseph Mathurin Fidele Lesuire
Antoine-Joseph-Marie de Valette
Władysław Jablonowsky: Pole
baron Jacques-David Martin de Campredon: in Paris
Achille Victor Fortuné de Vaufreland-Piscatory (Vaufreland): in Grenoble
Jacques Bardenet: at the artillery
Julien-Augustin-Joseph Mermet: commander of the 10th Hussar regiment
Jean-Baptiste (Andrè) Carvin called Calvin: in permission at Marseille
Vignolet: in permission
Louis-Ferdinand Baillard baron de Beaurevoir: cavalry inspector
Baron Robert Motte: at Toulon
Louis-Melchior Legrand: at Antibes
Pierre Bellon baron de Sainte-Hélène called « Lapisse »
Jean-Baptiste-Marie Franceschi: in permission at Genoa
Marquis Jules-Dominique Assereto: genoese, at Genoa
Jean-Charles Monnier: prisoner of war in Ancona
Louis Partounneaux: prisoner of war in Novi
Claude Clèment: prisoner of war at Coni
Edme-Aime Lucotte: prisoner of war in Ancona
Domenico Pino: Cisalpine, prisoner of war in Ancona
Leonardo Antonio Giuseppe Gaspare Venanzio Luigi Colli-Ricci Marchese di Felizzano (Colli): Piedmontese, prisoner of war at Novi
Jean Baptiste Nicolas Laurent Salme: prisoner of war at la Trebbia
Pascal Antoine Fiorella: prisoner of war at Turin
Jean-Baptiste Meyer de Schauensee (Meyer): prisoner of war at Mantua
Claude-Antoine chevalier de Préval
Dalons: in permission at Brignolles
Francesco Federico Campana
Touret: at Marseille
Pierre Augustin Hulin
Guyot: chief of Staff of the Right Wing (St. Cyr) – retired
Jacques Louis Delabrosse called Flavigny
Herbin: at Chambery
Requin: at Lyon
Reille: at Antibes
Calori and Trivulzi: charged of the organization of the exchange of the Cisalpine prisoners of war.
Liguria and Alpes Maritimes
Situation of the armée d’Italie on December 16, 1799
Commander in Chief General André Masséna
Total of enrolled men
Right Wing général de division Gouvion St. Cyr
First division General Sextius Alexandre François de Miollis
16th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – Recco road
73rd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – Monte Cordona
97th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – Torriglia and Scoffera pass
1st Sappers Battalion – Sori
Artillery company – 5th Regiment Foot Artillery – Sori
Second division – General François Watrin
15th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – Gavi road
11th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –Busalla, Voltaggio and Campomorone
62nd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – Busalla, Voltaggio and Campomorone
78th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – Busalla, Voltaggio and Campomorone
7th Chasseurs Regiment Detachment – la Bocchetta
1st Sappers Battalion – la Bocchetta
Artillery detach. – 5th Regiment Light Artillery –
Artillery detach. – 8th Regiment Light Artillery –
Artillery company – 1st Regiment Foot Artillery –
Artillery company – 2nd Regiment Foot Artillery –
Third division – General Ian Henryk Dąbrowsky
Voltri, Campofreddo and outposts
3rd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –3 Battalions.
106th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –2 Battalions.
1st Polish Legion –
Fourth division – General Jean Antoine Marbot [iv] replaced Laboissière
Cadibona, Montenotte, monte Legino, le Baracon (monte Baraccone), Savona e Albissola
18th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – Cadibona pass
14th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –2 Battalions.
68th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –2 Battalions.
1st Hussar Regiment
3rd Company detach. – 8th Regiment Light Artillery –
9th Company detach.– 2nd Regiment Foot Artillery –
Artillery company – 3rd Regiment Foot Artillery –
1st division – General Louis Lemoine then Jean Mathieu Seras (provisional)
San Giacomo, Gorra, Settepani, Bardinetto, outpost downhill of Saint Bernard and mont Gallet, Toirano, Loano and Finale.
17th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade –
20th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – 3 Battalions.
34th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –3 Battalions.
41st Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –3 Battalions.
63rd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –2 Battalions.
74th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade –3 Battalions.
2nd Sappers Battalion –
Artillery company detach. – 3rd Regiment Foot Artillery –
2nd division – General Claude Victor-Perrin “Victor”
26th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 and ½ Battalions. – Oneglia valley
33rd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 2 Battalions.- Albenga garrison
39th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 2 Battalions. – Porto Maurizio
92nd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 2 Battalions. – Ormea
93rd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 2 Battalions. – Castel Bianco
99th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 3 Battalions. – Nazin
105th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 3rd Battalion – Ormea and ponte di Nava
Detachment 8th Company 2nd Sappers Battalion – Ormea and ponte di Nava
Artillery “canonniers volontaires” – with the division
division des Alpes Maritimes – former Pouget’s division
Right wing brigade
18th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 Battalion. Bis – Viel, Aspremont, Isola
26th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – ½ Battalion.- Breglio
32nd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 Battalion. Bis – Drap, Permaldo
61st Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 Battalion. Bis – Puget, Villard
85th Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 Battalion. Bis – Isola, Saint Etienne
2nd Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – 1 Battalion.– Saint Martin de Lantosca
Left wing brigade
3rd Cisalpine Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – Rimplas, Saint Salvador
8th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – Nice
Battalion “auxiliaire de la Drôme” – Nice
Battalion “des Alpes Maritimes” – Nice
Polish Legion Depot troops – Villefranche
10th Hussars regiment – Nice
Artillery “canonniers sédentaires” – Nice, Villefranche
Reserve – 8th territorial military division – General Saint-Hilaire
Louis Charles Vincent Le Blond de Saint-Hilaire
1st Battalion Bouches-du-Rhône – Aix
1st Battalion Saône-et-Loire – Toulon
1st Battalion Mont Blanc – Antibes
Light infantry Demi-Brigades Depots units
Line infantry Demi-Brigades Depots units
14th Cavalry regiment – 4 squadrons – Salon
24th Cavalry regiment – 3 squadrons – Arles
General in Chief Guides – Grasse
3rd Chasseurs regiment – Hières
13th Chasseurs regiment – 4 squadrons – Tarascon
14th Chasseurs regiment – 4 squadrons – Aix
Dragoons depot – Avignon
“Sèdentaire” artillery – along the Coasts
Artillery and Engineers
Poles and Helvetians
Reserve – troops marching to their gather points
2nd Line Infantry Demi-Brigade – from Switzerland – Nice
25th Light Infantry Demi-Brigade – Nice
4th Chasseurs regiment – Grenoble
1st “auxiliaire” Battalion Aveyron – Aix
1st “auxiliaire” Battalion Gers – Alpes-Maritimes
1st Battalion de l’Haute Garonne – Alpes-Maritimes
1st Battalion de l’Haute Loire – Bouches-du-Rhône
2nd Battalion de l’Isère – Grenoble
1st Battalion du Leman – Genève
1st Battalion du Puy-de-Dome – Aix
1st Battalion de Vaucluse – Nice
1st Battalion de l’Aude – Aix
1st Battalion de l’Ariége – Aix
The Austrian Army in Italy at the beginning of 1800
Commander in Chief: Feld Marshal Leut. Michael Friedrich Benedikt Mélas
Chief of Staff OberstAnton Freiherr von Zach
Generalquartiermeister: GM. Johann Gabriel Chasteler Marquis de Courcelles
Pioneers Corps Commander: Oberstleutnant (promoted to Colonel after Genola) Joseph Graf Radetzky de Radetz
Right Wing – FML Carl Peter Ott de Batorkéz
1st Kolonne – Division General-Major Freiherr Anton von Mittrowsky
Staff: ObstLt. Piking, Major Mecséry. Hauptleute: Nugent, Quosdanovich. Oberstlieutenant: Neugebauer, Engelbert, Postel * Winter Quarters: Savigliano, Cavallermaggiore, Moretta, Genola, Racconigi, Saluzzo, Lagnasco
Engineers (Pioneers) – 1 ½ Companies
3 guns, 1 howitz.
K.K. Stabs Dragoner FML Johannes Fürst Liechtenstein Commander: Oberst Marquis Carlo Belcredi – 3 sqns.
Feldbrigade Generalmajor Carl von Brixen – Carmagnola
K.K. 4th Line Regiment Hoch und Deutschmeister – Erz. Maximilian von Köln Commander: Obst Carl von Brixen – I, II, III Battalions.
K.K. 48th Hungarian Line Infantry Regiment Frh. Philipp von Vukassovich – I, II, III Battalions
K.K. 45th Line Infantry Regiment Freiherr Franz von Lattermann – I, II, Battalions.
Feldbrigade Generalmajor Franz Kreyssern – Vigevano and Novara
K.K. 40th Hungarian Line Infantry Regiment GM Graf Joseph Mittrowsky – I, II, III Battalions
K.K. 13th Line Infantry Regiment Freiherr Franz Wenzel Reisky von Dubnitz – I, II, III Battalions
K.K. 16th Line Regiment Freiherr Ludwig Terzy – I,II and III Battalions.
2nd Kolonne – Division GM Andreas Freiherr Karacsaj de Vale-Sakam – Cuneo
Staff: Major Volkmann. Hauptmann Sokolovich, OberstLt. Hund * Winter Quarters: Cuneo, Centallo, Caraglio, Tarantasca, Borgo San Dalmazzo
Engineers (Pioneers) – 1 ½ Companies
3 guns 1 howitz.
Feldbrigade Generalmajor Graf Franz Auersperg
K.K. 36th Line Infantry Regiment Fürst Carl Fürstenberg I, II, III Battalions. – Cuneo
K.K. 18th Line Infantry Regiment Graf Patrick Stuart – I II III Battalions. – Fossano
Feldbrigade Generalmajor Joseph Maria Kajetan von Ulm Frhr. zu Erbach
K.K. 8th Line Regiment. (former Huff Regiment) – I,II,III Battalions. – Savigliano
K.K. 15th Line Regiment. Oranien Prinz Wilhelm- I,II Battalions.
3rd Kolonne – Division Friedrich Heinrich Fr.h. Gottesheim in Piedmont
Staff: Major Tomassich, Hauptmann Odelga, OberstLt Bechini
Engineers (Pioneers) – 1 Company
K.K. 2nd Hussar regiment Erzherzog Joseph Anton – ½ Squadrons
Feldbrigade Oberst Johann Kalnássy de Kalnás
K.K. 10th Line Infantry Regiment (former Regiment Kheul) –I II III Battalions.
K.K. 33th Line Regiment. Graf Anton Sztaray –III Battalion.
4th Kolonne – Division Generalmajor Anton Freiherr von Elsnitz
Staff: Major Mumb, hauptmann Voith, OberstLt Wittgens * Winter Quarters: Cherasco, Bene, Trinità, Carrù, Mondovì
Engineers (Pioneers) – 1 Company
K.K. Stabs Dragoner FML Johannes Fürst Liechtenstein – 1 ½ sqns.
Feldbrigade Generalmajor Freiherr Philipp von Brentano-Cimarolli
K.K. 33rd Line Regiment. Graf Anton Sztaray –I- II Battalion.
K.K. Grenadier Battalion Freiherr Carl von Görschen
K.K. Hungarian Grenadier Battalion OberstLeutnant Johann Pértussy
7th Ersatz Kolonne – Division GM Fürst Hohenzollern-Hechingen 8892 Feldbrigade Generalmajor Christoph Freiherr von Lattermann K.K. Grenadier Battalion major Franz Wouwermanns 511 K.K. Grenadier Battalion Oberleutnant Carl Soudain 493 K.K. Grenadier Battalion Graf Carl Paar 511 K.K. Grenadier Battalion Major Johann Graf Morzin 427 K.K. Grenadier Battalion Oblt Franz Xavier Weber von Treuenfeld 529 K.K. Grenadier Battalion Graf Anton Schiaffinati 607 K.K. 23rd Line Regiment. Grossherzog Ferdinand von Toscana – I, II and III Battalions – Pinerolo 2068 K.K. 52nd. Hungarian Regiment Erzherzog Palatin Anton Viktor – I, II and III Battalions. – Susa 1891 K.K. 63rd Line Regiment. Erzherzog Joseph Franz 2 Battalions. 1754
Division FML Freiherr Josef Philipp von Vukassovich
Winter Quarters: Pinerolo and Dora Valley
Division FML Conrad Valentin Kaim
Winter Quarters: Turin, Rivoli, Chivasso
Division FML Carl Peter Ott de Batorkéz
Winter Quarters: Turin, Crescentino, Chivasso, Moncalieri, Casale, Trino
Division FML Karl Joseph Graf Hadik von Futak
Winter Quarters: Aosta, Domo d’Ossola, Arona, Novara, Bellinzona
[i] Generalmajor Franz Eder von Hartenstein was in campaign as Oberst commander of the 28 Frölich. On 2.10.1799 he was named provisional Generalmajor, rank confirmed on 29.10.1799. He left the regiment’s command to the Oberstleutnant Paul Candiani de Ragaini, which led the regiment with a provisional rank during Eder’s sickness in the first months of the campaign (Battalion commanders Major Josef Reinwald von Waldeck and Major Ludwig Thiery). Eder died on 11.2.1807.
[ii] There is a bit of confusion regarding the Italian names inserted in the French defensive system. One of the most important outpost, near (and above) Sori was the monte Cordona, a 803 m high hill often called monte Corona in the actual reports. However, that mistaken name, was also given to the monte Cornua, which was not the highest mountain around Genoa but the hilltop with a broader horizon (so the best observatory at all). During the combats of December the reader must consider the attack against Monte Corona, as against monte Cornua (m 680, correctly spelt by the Austrians), while the attack at Sori was really an assault against the monte Cordona lines.
[iii] As for the truth, Hohenzollern had sent an Officer (as a courier) to Klenau, a rider carrying the news of the impossibility to attack the Bocchetta and of the necessity to wait the six substitutive Battalions. Therefore his ride was brutally hampered by the snow and the rough roads, so he reached Klenau too late to stop and to delay the operation.
[iv] Général Jean Antoine Marbot (1753-1800) Born at Château de Lariviére (Corrèze). A well educated and gentle nobleman. As second-lieutenant he was in the Royal King’s Guards. In 1781 the Count of Schonberg named him Captain in his Dragoons regiment. In 1793 he was named general-de-brigade (August 30) however “à titre provisoire”: (Confirmed on October 7, 1793). In 1795 he became general-de-division (June 13). In 1799 participated to the Italian Campaign as général-de-division in the Alps Corps, from September 9. Finally, in 1800, he had the command of the Reserve Corps of the Armée d’Italie.