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  • Napoleon's Guard

    For the life of me I have tried to figure out the difference in the various
    french names of the Guardsmen but I am unsure if I have them categorized
    properly so help me out Gents.

    Chasseur of the Guard - Meaning what?, Whats there function on the field? Of
    What caliber were they? and

    Young Guard - same as above.

    Old Guard ( Imperial Guard - I hope?) - same as above but I am sure I have this one down pat in my mind.

    Middle Guard - same as above.

    and were there any Voltiguers of the Guard.

  • #2
    Nay, Nay General... or should it be Ney, Ney?
    Not even an idiot of my calibre believes for one minute that you don't own a copy of 'Anatomy of Glory'!?
    Even I've got one... find it makes an excellent doorstop for my Emporium.

    The long toll of the brave
    Is not lost in darkness
    Over the fruitful earth
    And athwart the seas
    Hath passed the light of noble deeds
    Unquenchable forever.

    Comment


    • #3
      Foot regiments

      The Old Guard regiments served in the 3rd Division of the Old Guard, while the rest of the foot regiments of the Guard served in the 1st and 2nd Divisions.

      1st Foot Grenadiers Regiment
      Created from the Grenadiers of the Consular Guard (Gardes des Consuls), the Foot Grenadiers (1er Regiment de Grenadiers-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale) were one of the oldest and most venerated of regiments in the French Army; classed as the Old Guard.

      2nd Foot Grenadiers Regiment
      Created from the Grenadiers of the Consular Guard along with the 1st regiment, the 2e Regiment de Grenadiers-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale was one of the oldest and most venerated of regiments in the French Arm; classed as the Old Guard.

      3rd Foot Grenadiers Regiment
      This regiment was created from a disbanded Dutch Army in 1810 as the 3e Regiment de Grenadiers-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale.

      4th Foot Grenadiers Regiment
      A fourth grenadier regiment, the 4e Regiment de Grenadiers-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale, was raised in 1815.

      1st Foot Chasseur Regiment
      Created at the same time as the Grenadiers of the Consular Guard, 1er Regiment de Chasseurs-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale was one of the oldest and most venerated of regiments in the French Army; classed as the Old Guard.

      2nd Foot Chasseur Regiment
      Created at the same time as the 1st Chasseur Regiment of the Consular Guard, the 2e Regiment de Chasseurs-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale was the oldest and most venerated of regiments in the French Army; classed as the Old Guard.

      3rd Foot Chasseur Regiment
      The 3e Regiment de Chasseurs-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale briefly existed during the 100 days campaign after Napoleon's escape from Elba.

      4th Foot Chasseur Regiment
      The 4e Regiment de Chasseurs-à-Pied de la Garde Impériale was also raised during the 100 days campaign after Napoleon's escape from Elba.

      Fusilier Grenadiers
      Created as Fusiliers de la Garde in 1806, it became the Regiment de Fusilier-Grenadiers de la Garde Impériale in 1807. A second regiment that was raised became the 2nd Fusiliers Grenadiers. Two regiments of Fusilier Grenadiers were raised in 1806, but disbanded in 1814 and not re-established for the 100 Days campaign.

      [edit] Fusilier-Chasseurs
      The 1st Fusiliers Chasseurs Regiment (Regiment de Fusilier-Chasseurs de la Garde Impériale) was created in 1807 as part of reorganization of the Fusiliers de la Garde from the first battalions of the Grenadiers and Chasseurs of Velites of the Guard.

      Tirailleurs Grenadiers
      The first regiment to become known as the Young Guard, Tirailleurs Grenadiers (1er Regiment de Tirailleurs de la Garde Impériale) were raised in 1809 from conscripts, but they had to be able to read and write. A second regiment was formed later in the same year. In 1810 both were renamed 1e & 2e Regiments de Tirailleurs de la Garde Impériale.

      Tirailleurs Chasseurs
      Two regiments of Tirailleurs Chasseurs were formed at the same time as the Tirailleurs Grenadiers, and were also included in the Young Guard. For the 1812 Campaign in Russia these were expanded to six regiments. Both became 5e & 6e Regiments de Tirailleurs de la Garde Impériale in 1811.

      During the 1813-14 campaigns the number of Regiments de Tirailleurs de la Garde Impériale was increased to sixteen although they rarely equaled the regiments of the Young Guard of 1811.

      Voltigeurs of the Guard
      Created from the Tirailleurs Chasseurs in 1810, the Regiments de Voltigeurs de la Garde Impériale became one of the largest corps in the Guard, eventually absorbing the Regiments de Conscrits-Chasseurs to number sixteen regiments by 1814. The 14e Regiment de Voltigeurs de la Garde Impériale was created from the Spanish volunteers that retreated with the French Army, and the Regiment de Voltigeurs de la Garde Royale Espagnol.

      Conscripts Grenadiers
      Created in 1809, the two Conscripts Grenadiers Regiments (Regiment de Conscrit-Grenadiers), though intended to provide a reserve for the Young Guard, was not included in the guard, receiving line infantry pay. The regiments became 3e & 4e Regiment de Tirailleurs de la Garde Impériale in 1810.

      Conscripts Chasseurs
      Created in 1809, the Conscripts Chasseurs Regiment though intended to provide a reserve for the Young Guard, was not included in the guard, receiving Line Infantry pay. After 1811, the Conscrits-Chasseurs formed the 3rd and 4th regiments of the Voltigeurs of the Guard.
      [edit] National Guard Regiment of the Guard

      This regiment was created from the National Guard companies of the Northern Departments of France. The regiment was organized according to the line infantry tables, and in 1813 was renamed the 7th Regiment of Voltigeurs.

      Flanquer Grenadiers and Chasseurs
      In preparation for the invasion of Russia, Napoleon ordered a further creation of units for the Guard that included Regiment de Flanqueurs-Grenadiers de la Garde Impériale and Flanquer Chasseurs Regiment (Regiment de Flanqueurs-Chasseurs de la Garde Impériale).

      Generally speaking, Grenadiers were heavy troops and Chasseurs were light troops

      To the Cavalry, which is not as complicated as the Infantry, belonged:

      Horese Grenadiers
      Chasseurs a Cheval
      1st (Polish) Lancers
      2nd (Dutch) Lancers
      3rd (Lithuanian) Lancers
      Mamelukes
      Elite Gendarmes

      After the Russian campaign were formed

      Eclaireurs
      Guards of Honor
      briefly in 1815 a second regiment of Chasseurs a Cheval was formed

      Also part of the Guard were Foot and Horse Artillery, Engeneers and Marines

      Comment


      • #4
        La Garde a Feu!

        Consular and Imperial Guard
        1800-1815

        The following are the units of the Guard by year indicated:

        1800: Two battalions of grenadiers a pied, one company of chasseurs a pied, one company of chasseurs a cheval, two squadrons of grenadiers a cheval, one company of artillery, half foot and half horse.

        1801: Added to the above a squadron of Mamelukes was added to the Guard as well as a company of veterans.

        1802: An elite squadron of the Gendarmerie Nationale was taken into the Guard.

        1804: One regiment of Grenadiers a Pied, one regiment of Chasseurs a Pied (two battalions of eight companies each), one regiment of Grenadiers a Cheval, one regiment of Chasseurs a Cheval, two companies of horse artillery and two companies of artillery train troops. The elite squadron of the Gendarmerie was reorganized as the Legion de Gendarmerie d’Elite. The sailors that were attached to the Guard in 1803 became the Bataillon des Marins de la Garde. One battalion of Velites were attached to the Grenadiers a Pied and the Chasseurs a Pied.

        1806: Two regiments each of Grenadiers a pied and Chasseurs a Pied. The Velites were expanded to two battalions each for the grenadiers and chasseurs. One regiment each of Grenadiers a Cheval, Chasseurs a Cheval, and Dragoons. The regiments of Fusiliers-grenadiers and Fusiliers-chasseurs as well as six companies of gendarmes d’ordonnance were formed. The horse artillery and train were expanded to six gun companies. The Bataillon d’Ouvriers d’Administration was activated.

        1807: The same units as in 1806 with the exception of the gendarmes d’ordonnance which were disbanded. The Chevau-legers Polonais (Polish Light Horse) were added to the Guard as well as a second company of veterans.

        1808: The second regiments of the Grenadiers a Pied and the Chasseurs a Pied were disbanded. The Artillerie a Cheval is reduced to four companies and the regiment of Artillerie a Pied is activated with three gun companies to man 12-pounders as well as three ‘conscript artillery’ companies. Artillery train troops were also augmented. The remainder stayed the same.

        1809: Eight regiments of what would become the Young Guard infantry were formed: two each of tirailleurs-grenadiers and tirailleurs-chasseurs and two regiments each of conscripts-grenadiers and conscripts-chasseurs. The Velites of Florence received Guard status. The Sapeurs do Genie were formed in this year along with the Regiment of the National Guard of the Guard. The Polish Light Horse were rearmed as a lancer regiment. All else remained the same, though the artillery of the Guard was being continuously strengthened. The two foot companies of the Elite Gendarmes were disbanded.

        1810: The Dutch Grenadiers were added to the Guard with the incorporation of Holland into France. First numbered the 2d Grenadiers, they were later renumbered the 3d Grenadiers. The 2d (Red) Lancers were also added to the Guard from the old Dutch Army, as were the Pupilles, of which there were eventually nine battalions. The 5th Company of the Ouvrier battalion was converted to the Bataillon du Train des Equipages de la Garde. The tirailleurs-grenadiers were renamed tirailleurs and the tirailleurs-chasseurs were renamed voltigeurs. The Guard National Guard Regiment would become the 7th Voltigeur Regiment in 1813. The Velites of Turin were added this year, plus the Dutch veterans. The rest remained the same.

        1811: The 2d Regiments of the Grenadiers a Pied and Chasseurs a Pied were reactivated. The Regiment de Flanquer-Chasseurs was also activated. The Battalion of Instruction was activated at Fontainebleu (actually three training battalions). The rest remained the same except that the Young Guard infantry was being expanded and would eventually reach a strength of nineteen each of tirailleurs and voltigeurs by 1814.

        1812: The additions were the Squadron of Lithuanian Tartars and the 3d (Lithuanian) Lancers and a company of canoniers-veterans. The artillery train battalions became a regiment and a pontonnier company was added. The original conscript artillery officially became the Young Guard artillery. This is the year that the designations of Old, Middle, and Young Guard became official. The Old Guard were the 1st Regiments of Grenadiers and Chasseurs, the Grenadiers a Cheval, Chasseurs a Cheval, Sapeurs du Genie, Dragoons, Polish Lancers, Mamelukes, Artillerie a Pied and a Cheval, the Gendarmerie d’Elite, veterans and the NCOs of the 2d regiments of grenadiers and chasseurs and fusiliers and the Young Guard artillery. The Middle Guard was composed of the 3d (Dutch) Grenadiers, the corporals and privates of the 2d Grenadiers and Chasseurs, the 2d Lancers, both fusilier regiments, the artillery train battalions, the Velites of Turin and Florence, the ouvriers and the Dutch veterans. The Young Guard was composed of the tirailleurs, voltigeurs, Flanquers-chasseurs, the National Guard regiment, the bataillon des equipages, and the corporals and privates of the Young Guard artillery.

        1813: The Chasseurs a Cheval and the 2d Lancers formed five Young Guard companies. The 1st Lancers had nine Young Guard companies. The Grenadiers a Cheval and Dragoons each formed Young Guard squadrons (one each). The four regiments of the Gardes d’Honneur were formed as was the Flanquers-grenadiers. Lastly, the Bataillon Polonais de la Garde Imperiale was formed late in the year. The three ‘Scout’ regiments were formed (eclaireurs-grenadiers, eclaireurs-dragoons, and eclaireurs-lanciers) and were attached to old Guard cavalry units.

        1814: A Young Guard company of Sapeurs du Genie was activated.

        1815: Four regiments of each of Grenadiers a Pied and Chasseurs a Pied, all rated as Old Guard; the Imperial Guard Lancer Regiment including one Polish squadron in its usual blue uniform, the Grenadiers a Cheval, Chasseurs a Cheval, and Dragoons; three companies of horse artillery, thirteen of foot artillery, three regiments of voltigeurs and three of tirailleurs (though six of each was authorized), a 2d Chasseurs a Cheval, and finally a company of sailors, sapeurs du genie, and gendarmes. There were also the usual train troops to serve with the artillery.

        I hope this helps.

        Sincerely,
        M
        We are not now that strength which in old days
        Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
        Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
        To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Von Richter View Post
          Nay, Nay General... or should it be Ney, Ney?
          Not even an idiot of my calibre believes for one minute that you don't own a copy of 'Anatomy of Glory'!?
          Even I've got one... find it makes an excellent doorstop for my Emporium.

          Your right! I do have copy and I also have about 100 more Napoleonic books I
          am reading and have not had the luxury of reading it yet and did not know
          this was contained in the book so thanks for the heads up I'll get to it as soon
          as I can.

          Thanks Duke & M for your posts.

          Comment


          • #6
            You'll enjoy the bit about Waterloo General... according to that Lacuoche fellow the froggies actually win the battle!
            The long toll of the brave
            Is not lost in darkness
            Over the fruitful earth
            And athwart the seas
            Hath passed the light of noble deeds
            Unquenchable forever.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Von Richter View Post
              You'll enjoy the bit about Waterloo General... according to that Lacuoche fellow the froggies actually win the battle!
              Hmm, where did you read that? In his "Imperial guard" I can`t find anything like this.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Ulrih View Post
                Hmm, where did you read that? In his "Imperial guard" I can`t find anything like this.

                Ulrih, all you have to do is think one happy thought, and you'll see it, like me.
                The long toll of the brave
                Is not lost in darkness
                Over the fruitful earth
                And athwart the seas
                Hath passed the light of noble deeds
                Unquenchable forever.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Massena View Post
                  1813: The Chasseurs a Cheval and the 2d Lancers formed five Young Guard companies. The 1st Lancers had nine Young Guard companies. The Grenadiers a Cheval and Dragoons each formed Young Guard squadrons (one each). The four regiments of the Gardes d’Honneur were formed as was the Flanquers-grenadiers. Lastly, the Bataillon Polonais de la Garde Imperiale was formed late in the year. The three ‘Scout’ regiments were formed (eclaireurs-grenadiers, eclaireurs-dragoons, and eclaireurs-lanciers) and were attached to old Guard cavalry units.
                  Marshal M ,

                  Correct me if I'm wrong...

                  In september 1813, some regiments of the Guard cavalry had many squadrons of Young Guard.

                  Grenadiers a Cheval (Horse Grenadiers): 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 2 of Young Guard.

                  Chasseurs a Cheval: 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 6 of Young Guard.

                  Dragoons: 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 2 of Young Guard.

                  1st Lancers (Polish Lancers): 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 1 of Young Guard.

                  2nd Lancers (Red Lancers): 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 6 squadrons of Young Guard.

                  -----------------------------------------------------------

                  Great posts, Iron Duke and Massena.
                  My avatar: Center of the Cross of the Légion d'honneur (Legion of Honour) of the First French Empire (Napoleonic Era), 3rd type (awarded between 1806-1808). My Légion d'honneur. :-)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Zouave View Post

                    1st Lancers (Polish Lancers): 4 squadrons of Old Guard and 1 of Young Guard.
                    Actually...

                    4 squadrons of Old Guard, 2 of Middle Guard and 1 of Young Guard.
                    My avatar: Center of the Cross of the Légion d'honneur (Legion of Honour) of the First French Empire (Napoleonic Era), 3rd type (awarded between 1806-1808). My Légion d'honneur. :-)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Young Guard Squadrons

                      Here's what Edward Ryan has in Napoleon's Elite Cavalry:

                      Grenadiers a Cheval: Four Old Guard squadrons and two Young Guard squadrons.

                      Chasseurs a Cheval: Six squadrons of Old Guard (including the Mamelukes, which had one Old and one Young Guard company), and four squadrons of Young Guard. The Young Guard squadrons became the 2d Regiment of Chassuers a Cheval.

                      1st Lancers: Three squadrons Old Guard, Middle Guard, three squadrons, and one squadron of Young Guard.

                      Dragoons: Five Old Guard squadrons and one Young Guard squadrons.

                      Sincerely,
                      M
                      We are not now that strength which in old days
                      Moved earth and heaven; that which we are we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts
                      Made weak by time and fate but strong in will
                      To strive to seek to find and not to yield.

                      Comment

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