“Rogues! Do You Want To Stay In The Toolbox Forever?!” (Part 5: More Prussian Reinforcements)

I hope everyone is in fine fettle?  Last week, Mrs Fawr and I managed to finally have a holiday (in Devon), where the pubs were OPEN and the weather was glorious! 🙂 However, we’re now back in the People’s Glorious Republic of Drakefordistan which is behind the curve as always, but yesterday we finally caught up with civilisation as the pubs reopened here as well! 🙂  The Carmarthen Old Guard will also be reopening next week, so (fingers crossed) it seems that sanity and wargaming (two words not normally found in the same sentence) are finally starting to return.   I hope it’s all heading in the same direction wherever you are.

However, one small fly in the ointment was that we returned to find that our furry nemesis (generally known as ‘The Little Bastard’ or ‘The Black Beast of Aaaargh!’) was feeling sicker than a regimental tailor of Neapolitan hussars who had just been shown the new uniform designs by Murat… 

This is decidedly not a happy Little Bastard…

‘Thankfully’ and thanks to our long-suffering and much-bitten vet Bronwen, The Little Bastard is now on the mend and is making my life a living hell, as usual.

‘The Drugs DO Work’… What a difference a day makes. The Little Bastard is now back to her usual evil self.  Here seen devouring the remains of one of Royal Mail’s Finest…

Anyway as discussed last time, in addition to creating some new Seven Years War armies, I’ve been expanding my Prussians.  Last time I looked at some new officers, Horse Artillery and Musketeer Regiments and compared the respective size of my old Lancashire Games and Old Glory 15s figures to my new Eureka figures.  This time I’m looking at some recently-painted Füsilier Regiments and Grenadier Battalions.  These are all Eureka 18mm figures.

Above:  The Füsilier Regiment ‘Münchow’ (IR 36) (known as ‘Alt-Münchow’ from 1758) was named for Gustav Bogislaw von Münchow, who had been the regiment’s Chef since its creation in 1740. 

The regiment was heavily engaged in the first campaigns of the war and had a good battlefield reputation.  At the Battle of Kolin in 1757 the regiment was in Hülsen’s vanguard division and as the army turned to face the Austrians, it found itself as the leftmost infantry regiment in the line.  The regiment performed superbly, capturing the key Krzerczhorz oak-wood, but did so alone and unsupported and was soon forced back by increasing Austrian pressure.  As the regiment fell back it came under fierce attack by Austrian cavalry and by the end of the day had lost 931 men. 

Reduced to a single battalion, the regiment battled on and fought in Frederick’s great victory of Leuthen.  The regiment was restored to two battalions in 1758, but in 1759 had the misfortune to be assigned to Finck’s corps, which surrendered en masse at the Battle of Maxen.  In 1760 the regiment was reformed as a single battalion, as part of the garrison of Schweidnitz.  However, in 1761 the Austrians once again recaptured Schweidnitz and the regiment went into the bag for a second time.  It was not re-raised until after the war.

The regiment’s grenadier companies spent the war massed as part of Grenadier Battalion 35/36.

Above:  The ‘Münchow’ Füsiliers, like most Prussian Füsilier Regiments, had a relatively simple uniform, devoid of lapels and lace.  The coat had white Swedish cuffs, white collar, shoulder-strap and small-clothes, poppy red linings, black neck-stock and yellow ‘metal’ (i.e. buttons, officers’ hat-lace and cap metalwork). 

The regimental colours had grey as the distinguishing colour.  I normally get my Prussian flags from Fighting 15s, but they only do the post-SYW lilac version (which was presumably adopted when the regiment was reformed after the SYW).  I’ve therefore printed these flags myself, using the picture files from Kronoskaf.  The flag-staves were white.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Münchow’ Füsiliers, showing the plain white back to their Füsilier caps.  Note that Prussian infantry officers never wore Füsilier or Grenadier caps and always wore hats.

Above:  The Füsilier Regiment ‘Jung-Braunschweig’ (IR 39) was first raised in 1741 with Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick as its Chef, but in 1745 the colonelcy was passed to Ferdinand’s youngest brother, Prince Frederick Francis of Brunswick (King Frederick of Prussia was married to their sister, Elisabeth Christine).  From 1755 the regiment was officially known as ‘Jung-Braunscheig’ to avoid confusion with Prince Ferdinand’s new regiment, Musketeer Regiment ‘Alt-Braunschweig’ (IR5).  However, in 1758 Prince Frederick Francis of Brunswick was killed at the Battle of Hochkirch and the post of Chef remained vacant for the rest of the war.

The regiment was heavily engaged throughout the early part of the war, being present at the Battles of Prague, Breslau, Leuthen and Hochkirch.  While not being one of the legendary regiments, it performed consistently well and managed to avoid any major disasters.

The regiment’s grenadier companies served in Grenadier Battalion 12/39.

Above:  The ‘Jung-Braunschweig’ Füsiliers wore the typically simple Füsilier style of uniform, without lapels or lace.  The coat had lemon yellow Swedish cuffs, shoulder-strap and collar with white ‘metal’ and poppy red linings.  The small-clothes were also lemon yellow and the neck-stock was black.  The uniform is almost identical to that of the ‘Prince Henry’ Füsiliers (IR 35), who used sulphur yellow as the distinguishing colour.

Note that a few SYW uniform books, most notably ‘Uniforms of the Seven Years War’ by Mollo erroneously include an ‘Officer of the 39th Regiment’.  However, they’ve got their Brunswicks confused, as those plates are based on this famous portrait of Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick (right), wearing the regimental uniform for Musketeer Regiment ‘Alt-Braunschweig’ (IR 5), with straw-coloured facings (including lapels), matching small-clothes and gold ‘Brandenburg’ lace.

The flags are by Fighting 15s.  The regiment’s flag-staves were painted lemon yellow to match the facing colour.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Jung-Braunschweig’ Füsiliers, showing the plain lemon yellow back to the regiment’s Füsilier caps.

Above:  The Füsilier Regiment ‘Kreytzen’ (IR 40) started life as part of the army of the Duchy of Sachsen-Eisenach.  However, in October 1740, as the newly-crowned King Frederick II of Prussia began preparing for war with Austria, his uncle the Duke of Sachsen-Eisenach gave him the regiment as a demonstration of his allegiance and loyalty in the coming war. 

At the start of the Seven Years War the position of Chef was held by General Johann Friedrich von Kreytzen and the regiment bore his name (briefly becoming ‘Alt-Kreytzen’ in 1758) until 1759, when Kreytzen died of an asthma attack while in camp near Neisse.  The position of Chef then transferred to General Georg Carl Gottlob von der Gabelentz and the regiment was therefore known as the ‘Gabelentz’ Füsiliers from then on.

The regiment fought well at Prague and Kolin in 1757, but then suffered a run of bad luck, starting with being captured during the unsuccessful defence of Schweidnitz later that same year.  The regiment was quickly exchanged, but in 1758 at the Battle of Zorndorf  its 2nd Battalion was routed by hussars while on detached duty defending an artillery battery.  Worse was to follow in 1759 at the Battle of Paltzig, where the regiment as a whole suffered very heavy losses.  The regiment once again suffered heavy losses in 1760 during the Siege of Dresden at the hands of Austrian Grenzer.

The regiment’s grenadiers spent the war massed as part of Grenadier Battalion 37/40.

Above:  The ‘Kreytzen’ Füsiliers wore one of the more spectacular uniforms of the Prussian Army and were presumably regular participants in the annual ‘Potsdam Pride’ Parade.  As with most Füsilier regiments, the coat for the rank-and-file was fairly plain, lacking lapels and lace.  The Swedish cuffs, shoulder-strap and collar were coloured rose pink and the ‘metal’ was white.  Most unusually, the linings were also coloured the same as the facings, instead of the usual poppy red colouring.  The small-clothes were also rose pink and the neck-stock was black.  Officers’ coats were a little more spectacular, having the addition of rose pink lapels and silver ‘Brandenburg’ lace on the buttonholes.

The flags, which are by Fighting 15s, reflected the rose pink theme and were of a unique design, featuring the chain of the Order of the Black Eagle in lieu of the usual wreath surrounding the central medallion.  The staves were white.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Kreytzen’ Füsiliers, showing the unusual rose pink coat-linings (visible as turnbacks) and the plain rose pink backs to the Füsilier caps.

Above:  The Füsilier Regiment ‘Diericke’ (IR 59) was created on 26th November 1758 from the Prussian Army’s Pioneer Regiment, in honour of their heroic performance at the Battle of Zorndorf, where they not only fought as infantry but also captured two Russian batteries.  The regiment is sometimes referred to as Füsilier Regiment ‘Sers’ for its Colonel, Philipp Loth von Sers.  However, Colonel von Sers was never the Chef.  That title was given to Christian Friedrich von Diericke on the date of the Füsilier Regiment’s creation.  However, the former unit may however have been referred to as Pioneer Regiment ‘Sers’, as it was standard practice to refer to units by their commander’s name if there was no designated Chef (e.g. in the case of combined Grenadier Battalions and artillery batteries).

The Pioneer Regiment was organised much the same as a regular infantry regiment, though instead of Grenadiers it had two companies of Miners.  When the regiment became a Füsilier Regiment the Miners were split off to form a separate Mining Corps and the Grenadier Companies were not formed until 1782. 

The regiment went on to fight at the Battle of Paltzig, where it suffered heavy losses.  This was followed by the Battle of Kunersdorf, where the regiment was used as a rearguard to cover Frederick’s withdrawal, but was overrun and mostly captured.  The survivors formed the core of a new regiment, which went on to fight for the rest of the war without further disaster.

Above:  The ‘Diericke’ Füsiliers were yet another regiment who wore a plain coat without lapels or lace, but who managed to pull off a striking colour scheme, thanks to their choice of small-clothes.  The coat was very plain, with blue Swedish cuffs and shoulder-strap (matching the coat colour), no collar and white ‘metal’.  Officers had silver Brandenburg lace on the breast, cuffs and pockets.  The only splashes of colour were the poppy red linings and piping on tail-pockets and shoulder-strap.  Neck-stocks were black.  The main colour was provided by the small-clothes, which were coloured dark orange.

The flags are again by Fighting 15s.  The distinguishing colour was earth brown, reflecting their original role.  The flag-staves were white.

Above:  A rear view of the ‘Diericke’ Füsiliers, showing the backs of the Füsilier caps.  The regiment initially had Pioneer Caps, which were lower than the Füsilier pattern, being dark orange, piped white, with a white pompom on top of the crown and a silvered front plate that was distinctly lower than that fitted to the Füsilier-type cap.  Sources disagree as to when the Füsilier caps were issued, but there are several surviving examples in Russian, Belorussian and Ukrainian collections that had been captured at Paltzig and Kunersdorf, so it seems very likely that they were issued very close to the regiment’s creation and there are suggestions that the caps were being issued to the Pioneer Regiment even before its conversion to Füsiliers. 

Sources disagree further on the colouring of the Füsilier cap; all agree that the crown of the cap was dark blue, but they are split over whether the band was dark orange or ‘light red’ (i.e. a light crimson shade).  There are also disagreements re the colour of the metalwork, as the surviving examples are all brass, without a trace of the silver paint that was normally applied to regiments with ‘white’ metal.  I’ve gone with white metal, as it doesn’t seem likely to me that they would be the only unit in the Prussian Army to have a cap plate that didn’t match the button colour.

Above:  Grenadier Battalion 4/16 was formed from the Grenadier companies of Musketeer Regiments ‘Kalnein’ (IR 4) and ‘Graf zu Dohna’ (IR 16).  As previously discussed, Prussian regiments weren’t known by numbers at the time of the Seven Years War (not until 1806, in fact) and were instead known by a designated title (e.g. ‘Garde’), the name of the regimental Chef, or in the case of units without Chefs (e.g. artillery units and combined Grenadier Battalions), by the name of their Commanding Officer. 

In this instance, the battalion went through five COs (and associated names) through the course of the Seven Years War; Polentz (1756-57), Kleist (1757-58), Willemey (1758-59), Beneckendorff (1759-1762) and Thielau (1762) and clearly illustrates why it’s invariably easier to identify units by their anachronistic numbers!

Above:  Grenadier Battalion 4/16, like the majority of Prussian Grenadier Battalions, was formed at the start of the war from four Grenadier Companies – two each from two regiments.  These pairings remained unchanged for the entire war, though different pairings were used in other wars (in the case of the War of Austrian Succession/Silesian Wars, the pairings had changed with each new phase of the war).  There would therefore be two different uniforms used within each battalion:

On the left we see the grenadiers of IR 4, whose coat had no lapels, but the breast and cuff-flaps were decorated with white lace buttonholes.  The officers of IR 4 had an unusual scalloped gold lace edging to the coat front-seams, collar, pockets and cuffs.  Pompoms were red/blue/red.

On the right are the grenadiers of IR 16, whose coat had red lapels, with buttons unusually arranged in threes and no lace decoration.  The officers had gold lace buttonholes, arranged in threes as mentioned.  Pompoms were white with black ‘freckles’ and a red centre.

Both regiments had straw small-clothes, poppy red linings and Brandenburg cuffs, no collar, blue shoulder-strap, red neck-stock and yellow ‘metal’.

Above:  A rear view of Grenadier Battalion 4/16, showing the rear of the caps.  These were straw with a red band for both regiments.  It’s impossible to paint the piping details in 15mm, but IR 4 (here on the right) had blue/red/blue piping, while IR 16 (here on the left) had blue/white/red/white/blue piping.  I find that with complicated lace colours, it’s often best to look at the picture from across the room and see what colour it looks like from there!

Note that Prussian Grenadier Battalions DID NOT CARRY FLAGS!  I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating… The only exceptions were the 3rd Battalion of the ‘Garde‘ Regiment (IR 15), who all wore grenadier caps and the ‘Grenadier-Garde‘ (IR 6), which was a single-battalion regiment (the descendant unit of King Frederick-Williams’ ‘Potsdam Giants’) who again all wore grenadier caps.  The first Prussian combined Grenadier Battalions to receive flags were those formed in 1813!

Above:  Grenadier Battalion 17/22 was formed from Musketeer Regiments ‘Manteuffel’ (IR 17) and ‘Prinz Moritz’ (IR 22).  This was another well-travelled and hard-fighting unit that got through a whopping six COs and changes of title during the Seven Years War: Puttkamer (1756-57), Wrede (1757), Kremzow (1757-59), Von der Tann (1759-60), Wobersnow (1760) & Rothenburg (1760-62).

Above:  Grenadier Battalion 17/22.  The grenadiers of IR 17, here on the left, had white small-clothes, lapels, shoulder-strap, collar and Brandenburg cuffs and red & white ‘toothpaste-stripe’ buttonhole lace (which I’ve painted as salmon-pink, as that what it looks like at a distance).  The officers had gold Brandenburg lace buttonholes.  Pompoms were red/white/green.

The grenadiers of IR 22, here on the right, had poppy red lapels and Brandenburg cuffs (no collar), a blue shoulders-strap piped red and lace edging to the cuffs, as well as two lace buttonholes below the lapels.  The officers instead had gold Brandenburg lace buttonholes on the lapels and cuff-flaps.  Small-clothes were straw.  Pompoms were red/white.

Both regiments had yellow ‘metal’, red neck-stocks and poppy red linings.

Above:  A rear view of Grenadier Battalion 17/22, showing the cap detail.  The grenadiers of IR 17, here on the right, had an all-white cap.  The lace was white, decorated with red dots and here depicted as salmon-pink.

The grenadiers of IR 22, here on the left, had a blue cap with a red band.  The lace was white/blue/white, here simply depicted as white.

Above:  No. II Standing Grenadier Battalion (45/48/gIX).  As discussed before, the Grenadier Companies of Garrison Infantry Regiments and a few higher-numbered Füsilier Regiments (IRs 41, 44, 45 & 48) were permanently grouped as Standing Grenadier Battalions during peacetime, in order to supplement the garrisons of various key fortresses.  In wartime they mostly took to the field with the army.  These battalions were known as Nos. I to VI Standing Grenadier Battalions, but could also be known by the name of their CO.  In some instances they are referred to in histories by the regimental numbers of their component parts (e.g. Grenadier Battalion 41/44 instead of No. III Standing Grenadier Battalion).

Despite being heavily engaged at a number of large battles including Prague, Breslau, Leuthen and Hochkirch, this battalion managed to only burn through two COs: Ingersleben (1756-57) and Unruh (1757-1762).

The battalion was originally formed from the two Grenadier Companies of the ‘Dossow’ Füsiliers (IR 45) and one company each from Garrison Infantry Regiment IX and Garrison Infantry Regiment XIII.  These last two regiments had only one Grenadier Company apiece.  Then in July 1755 (some sources say May 1756), Garrison Infantry Regiment XIII was re-titled as the Füsilier Regiment ‘Erbprinz von Hessen-Kassel’ (IR 48).  The new IR 48 still had only one Grenadier Company, so the organisation of No. II Standing Grenadier Battalion remained unchanged apart from the slight change of sub-unit titles.

Above:  The uniform for the grenadiers of the ‘Dossow’ Füsiliers (IR 45), here on the left, was the same as the uniform of their parent regiment; poppy red Brandenburg cuffs and linings, no lapels or collar, blue shoulder-strap piped red, yellow ‘metal’, white buttonhole lace on breast and cuff-flaps, red neck-stock and white small-clothes.  The officers had gold buttonhole lace (some sources show the officers’ lace as only a pair of buttonholes below the breast, a pair on each pocket and none on the cuff-flaps).  Pompoms were yellow/black/red.

The uniforms of the other two companies, here shown on the right, were identical to each other, being based on the uniform of Garrison Infantry Regiments IX & XIII, but differing in very small details.  The uniforms did not change when GIR XIII became IR 48.  the coats were very plain, having black Swedish cuffs and collar, with blue shoulder-strap, poppy red linings, yellow ‘metal’, no lapels and no lace.  Neck-stocks were black (though for some reason I’ve painted them red…) and small-clothes were white (note that the parent regiments had dark blue small-clothes).  The Officers had gold scalloped hat-lace, but no lace on the coat.  Pompoms were yellow/black/light blue.

Above:  A rear view of No. II Standing Grenadier Battalion, showing the cap details.  The grenadiers of IR 45, here shown on the right, had white caps with a blue band and lace coloured the same as the pompom (I’ve tried to do yellow piping within red – I should have just gone with orange).

The grenadiers of GIR IX and GIR XIII/IR 48, here shown on the left, had red caps with a brass band and piping again in the pompom colourings (which I’ve done as yellow within light blue – I should have stuck with just light blue).

Enough for now!  I’m presently just finishing off the first division of French cavalry, so they’ll be posted here soon.  I’ll also try to get some Cold War stuff photographed while I’m at it.  The Frogs should all be painted by the end of this weekend, so then it’ll be on to the British and Hanoverians…

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

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