“Rogues! Do You Want To Stay In The Toolbox Forever?!” (Part 8: Prussian Cavalry Reinforcements)

When we did our big Leuthen refight back in June, it quickly became apparent that my SYW Prussian army, while pretty big, still needs a few more units to enable the larger battles to be fought.  As mentioned in Part 7, I managed to paint some Prussian Guards and Grenadiers in time for the game, as well as the Gens d’Armes Cuirassiers (see below), but I still had to substitute some cavalry units with dragooned Swedes and Austrians.  Thankfully some of the Prussian cavalry units were off-table at the start, so units that were knocked out early in the game were then used to fill the gaps in the off-table reserve formation.

Since the Leuthen game I’ve been looking ahead to the next Big Game, which will be the Battle of Kolin.  I’ve got more than enough Prussian infantry for that scenario, but found myself short by one dragoon regiment and a couple of hussar regiments.  I could also use some more hussars to replace some ancient Mk 1 Lancashire Games figures, some more battalion guns for both sides and a new Saxon Carabiniergarde Regiment.  Looking further ahead to perhaps refighting the Battle of Prague, I’ll also need another six Musketeer Regiments and four Fusilier Regiments (20 battalions total).

Above:  The Gens d’Armes Regiment (CR 10) was one of four Prussian cuirassier regiments known by their historical title instead of the name of their regimental Chef; the others being the Leibregiment zu Pferde (CR 3), the Leib-Carabiniers (CR 11) and the Garde du Corps (CR 13).  That said, the regiment still had a Chef and is referred to by the name of the Chef in some accounts.  The Chef was Nikolaus Andreas von Katzler until his death in November 1760, when the title was transferred to Friedrich Albert von Schwerin.

Prussian cuirassier regiments were large organisations: initially with five 178-man squadrons totaling 890 men, plus regimental staff.  Squadron strength increased in 1757 to 193 men, but in 1758 dropped back to 169 men for the rest of the war.  In Tricorn terms that makes them Large (16-figure) units.  The exception to this rule was the Garde du Corps (CR 13) which initially had only one squadron (often fielded alongside the Gens d’Armes), but in 1756 was increased to three squadrons with the forced conscription of the former Saxon Garde du Corps.

Above:  The Gens d’Armes wore the typical pale straw-coloured Prussian cuirassier uniform, with collar, cuffs and cummerbund in red.  Tail-turnbacks and shoulder-straps were pale straw.  The cuffs, front-seam and tail-turnbacks were edged with regimental lace, which was red with a central yellow stripe.  Buttons were yellow metal.  Crossbelts and cartridge-boxes were white, edged with regimental lace.  A black-enamelled cuirass was worn over the coat; this was edged in red and was held in place with white straps.  Hats did not have lace edging, but did have black cockades and white corner-rosettes.

Offizier Gens d´armes.jpgAbove:  Sabretaches were red, edged with regimental lace and decorated with the crowned ‘FR’ cypher in yellow.

Trumpeters had the same basic uniform, though with lace decoration on the sleeves and a red fringed edge to the hat.  They also lacked the cuirass and sabretache.

Officers, such as the one pictured on the right, had gold lace replacing the regimental lace edging, as well as gold decoration on the cuirass.  The hat-rosettes were silver with black centres and the universal silver sash was also worn.  The white plumes were added as a field sign just after the end of the war (the Austrians adopted their yellow & black plumes at the same time).

The standard-staves were amber-yellow, matching the standard’s main colour.  The regimental Leibstandarte was white with an amber-yellow centre, while the Eskadronstandarten were the reverse; amber-yellow with a white centre.  Fringes, etc were gold.  An Eskadronstandarte is shown here.

Above:  Horse-furniture was blue, edged with red lace, with three narrow yellow stripes, which as usual is impossible to paint at this scale!  As always, you have the choice to either do a simplified version of the lace (as here), or an ‘average’ colour to represent how it looks at a distance (i.e. orange).  Having decided to go for the simplified option with a single stripe, I unfortunately misread a colour plate; it looked like red stripes on yellow, so that’s what I did.

The shabraque and holster-covers were also decorated with a large, eight-pointed silver star.  However, I tend not to paint such badges, as I find it makes the horse furniture look too ‘cluttered’ and hides the dominant colour.

Above:  No Prussian dragoon regiments had historic titles and all were therefore known by the name of their regimental ChefDragoon Regiment ‘Blanckensee’ (DR 2) was therefore named for Christian Friedrich von Blanckensee.  In September 1757, the title passed to Anton von Krockow, whereupon the regiment was known as ‘Krockow’ or ‘Jung-Krockow’.

As with the cuirassiers, Prussian dragoon regiments were large organisations, starting with 178 men per squadron in 1756 and increasing to 193 men per squadron in 1757.  Unlike the cuirassiers, they did not then reduce their strength again until the end of the war.  Most regiments had five squadrons and in Tricorn are represented as Large units of 16 figures, as here.  However, the ‘Bayreuth’ Dragoons (DR 5) and ‘Schorlemmer’/’Meier’ Dragoons (DR 6) uniquely had ten squadrons, often grouped as five-squadron battalions (each being a Large unit in game terms).

Above:  As with all Prussian dragoon regiments of the period, the ‘Blanckensee’ Dragoons wore a distinctive cobalt blue coat.  When I last painted Prussian dragoons (1995 or thereabouts), I was for some reason, using a lurid acrylic ‘electric’ blue, as shown in Part 3.  However, as with most things in my life, I’ve decided to tone it down a bit…  I’ve therefore mixed a medium blue shade from my usual Humbrol enamels.

Above:  The collar, cuffs, lapels and tail-turnbacks of the ‘Blanckensee’ Dragoons were white, the shoulder-strap was blue, buttons were yellow metal and a yellow aiguilette was worn behind the right shoulder.  Officers had gold Brandenburg-style buttonhole lace and drummers’ lace was white with yellow stripes.  Smallclothes were straw.  The hat was unlaced, but had a black cockade and red corner-rosettes.

The standard shown here is the regimental Leibstandarte, which was white with a yellow centre, red corner-rays and gold fringe.  The Eskadronstandarten were yellow with white centres and red corner-rays.  Staves were yellow.

Above:  The ‘Blanckensee’ Dragoons’ horse furniture was white, edged with three narrow stripes in cobalt blue.  The ‘FR’ cypher, coloured cobalt blue, was displayed at the rear corners of the shabraque and on the holster covers.

There is a curious mention of the regiment (then known as the ‘Krockow’ Dragoons) in 1760 gaining a sixth squadron, designated as the regiment’s ‘Light’ Squadron.  I’ve not found any more information regarding this and it seems to be unique to this regiment.  Perhaps this was an experiment akin to the Light Troop of British dragoon regiments?

Above:  Hussar Regiment ‘Wartenberg’ (HR 3) was present at the battles of Prague, Kolin and Leuthen and had an excellent fighting reputation.  The regimental Chef at the start of the war was Hartwig Carl von Wartenberg, though when he was killed at Alt-Bunzlau on 3rd May 1757 the regimental title passed to Carl Emanuel von Warnery.  At the Battle of Kolin, the ‘Warnery’ Hussars fought a brilliant cavalry action alongside the ‘Seydlitz’ and ‘Werner’ Hussars, covering the exposed flank of Frederick’s retreating army.  Something worth noting here is that Prussian cavalry Chefs frequently served as the regimental Colonel in the field, unlike most of the infantry Chefs.

However, on 12th November 1757, Warnery along with half of his regiment, fell into Austrian hands when the fortress of Schweidnitz surrendered.  Warnery was exchanged the following year, but had to endure a court-martial, at which he was cleared of any culpability for the surrender of the fortress.  However, other officers were not so lucky and Warnery appealed to the court for his brother officers to also be cleared. In this he was unsuccessful and, considering this to be a stain upon his honour, Warnery resigned from Prussian service and retired to his wife’s Polish estates.  There he became a celebrated military writer (his books included the excellent ‘Remarks on Cavalry’) and eventually became a cavalry general in Polish service before his death in 1776.

In the meantime, following Warnery’s resignation, ownership of the regiment passed in March 1758 to Christian von Möhring, who remained as Chef until 1773, with the regiment being known as the ‘Möhring’ Hussars throughout his tenure.

Above:  At the start of the Seven Years War, each Prussian hussar regiment had ten squadrons, each of 115-116 men.  This strength increased fairly randomly during the war from regiment to regiment, with most regiments having around 140-150 men per squadron (141 men being recorded for the ‘Möhring’ Hussars in 1759), which was significantly weaker than the average squadron strength of the cuirassiers and dragoons.  In game terms, each hussar regiment usually operates as two five-squadron ‘battalions’ of 12 figures, as shown here, though an understrength regiment might operate as a single Large 16-figure unit, depending on the scenario.

Above:  The ‘Wartenberg’ Hussars wore a white dolman with yellow cuffs and collar and a blue pelisse with white fur edging (NCOs had brown fox-fur).  Braid was yellow and buttons were yellow metal.  Officers had gold braid, with a gold lace ‘frame’ around the braiding on the breast.  Breeches were straw and the schalavary leggings were blue with yellow lace edging.  Some sources show white edging and tassels to the boots, but there is some suggestion that these were a later addition, so I’ve left the boots plain.  The barrel-sash was white and yellow (some sources show white and blue), with white ‘whips’, though officers had silver barrel-sashes.

Above:  The ‘Wartenberg’ Hussars wore dark brown busbies with plain white bags and white cords and flounders.  Officers had gold cords and flounders.  However, I noticed after painting these that Bleckwenn shows the trumpeters as wearing black mirlitons with short yellow plumes.  It also shows the trumpeters’ lace and braid as mixed red & yellow (I did plain yellow – bah!).

Above:  Shabraques were blue with white vandycking, piped yellow.  Officers’ shabraques had gold piping and were decorated at the front and rear corners with a white shield, edged and crowned with gold, bearing a black eagle.

Note that Prussian hussars stopped carrying standards following the end of the First Silesian War in 1742.  Some of my ancient hussar units carry standards, but that was purely due to Old Glory always including standard-bearers in the pack.  With Eureka I can buy exactly the figures I want, so I haven’t included standard-bearers.

Above:  Sabretaches were yellow, edged with white lace and decorated with the ‘FR’ cypher in white.  They seem to have had a vandycked edge during the 1740s, but changed to a straight lace edge by the time of the Seven Years War.  Officers’ sabretaches were edged with gold and were decorated with the same crowned eagle-on-shield design used to decorate their shabraques.

Prussian hussar horses are commonly referred to as ‘Polish’ horses, being small in stature and multi-coloured.  The dragoons were given heavier German breeds; typically chestnuts, browns and bays, while the cuirassiers received blacks and dark bays.  However, Kronoskaf also suggests regimental horse-colourings for Prussian hussars that I’ve not seen elsewhere.  For the ‘Wartenberg’ Hussars they suggest chestnut horses with white manes, so I’ve done a proportion of the regiment with those colourings.

Figures & Flags

The figures for all three regiments are from Eureka Miniatures, while the standards are by Fighting 15s.

That’s all for now!  Sadly I’ve not done any miniature gaming since the Breed’s/Bunker Hill game and at the moment we’re board-gaming, which isn’t very photogenic (though I may well do a game review)!  The painting is also very slow, as I’m finding 28mm figures to be a real chore these days and can’t wait to get back to 15mm!  Nevertheless, I’m pressing on with them, as I want to do a big AWI game at Christmas and I need some more British Light Infantry and Grenadiers, as well as artillery for both sides and more American Continentals and generals.  In the meantime, I’ve been photographing more bits of my existing collection, such as these Hessian Jäger.  Anyway, until the next time!

This entry was posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Prussian Army, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules). Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to “Rogues! Do You Want To Stay In The Toolbox Forever?!” (Part 8: Prussian Cavalry Reinforcements)

  1. Willz. says:

    Fantastic 18th century 18mm eye candy.


  2. Nick says:

    Another interesting article

  3. Neil Youll says:

    That’s a lot of cavalry: all superbly painted as usual. Here’s a question: when you paint the trim to the saddle cloths (for the Gens d’Armes for instance) do you paint the red first and then two thin yellow stripes or yellow first and then one thin red stripe?

    • jemima_fawr says:

      Cheers. I always do the broad stripe first, then a thin line up the middle. Doesn’t always work…

      • Neil Youll says:

        I seem to think I’ve tried both methods (not painted many cavalry recently) and they can both be a bit hit and miss. Possibly time I sent for some new brushes ( as the bad workman said).

        • jemima_fawr says:

          Yeah, I think that painting one line is much easier than painting two. You also have to keep the paint fairly thin, so it doesn’t blob and ‘stall’ the line.

  4. Pingback: Jemima Fawr’s Review of 2022 | Jemima Fawr's Miniature Wargames Blog

  5. Pingback: “Rogues! Do You Want To Stay In The Toolbox Forever?!” (Part 9: Prussian Hussars) | Jemima Fawr's Miniature Wargames Blog

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