Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Completed Armee du Nord infantry brigade

 At last a completed (well, one battalion gun is missing) infantry brigade of the Armee du Nord 1793-1795 consisting of two demi brigades each of one line and two volunteer battalions, a small combined grenadier battalion and an artillery battery (8 pdr).

Most of the figures are Eureka, with a sprinkling of some other firms. 
Each battalion will be of 6 bases of which one is a battalion gun (the regulars are missing one base of infantry and the battalion guns should imho be manned by white coated artillerymen from the battalion itself). Also one volunteer battalion misses its battalion gun. All missing parts are being in the painting que. 
The artillery battery consists of two guns, a dismounted artillery officer, a limber and ammunition caisson. It needs some room when depolyed.  

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Various infomation about the Dutch infantry

I was reading the Reglement issued 28th of February 1772 in which various specific information is given about weapons, colour and sabreknots etc.
So I thought that would be usefull for those who like to paint Dutch infantry in 28mm or 15mm.

Spontoons (officers) and halberds (sergeants)

The Spontoon of the officers should be black and max 7 Rijnlandse Voet or 219,8 cm

There are various models of spontoons, from the Dutch military museum underneath some pictures. The first one had the coat of arms of the Province of Utrecht, the second one the coat of arms of Williem IV or V and the last one of the Province of Zeeland.

An officer of the Swiss guard (but no black flagpole) 

The halberds of the sergeants should also be black and max 7 Rijnlandse Voet or 219,8 cm


Of the officers: tassel and knot orange/silver  
of the sergeants: tassel and knot silver and orange
of the other ranks: tassel white but the knot in various company colours with those of the first battalion in one full colour, those of the second battalion in two colours


1st bat

2nd bat

1st company (grenadiers)


Orange and white

2nd company


Red and white

3rd company


Yellow and white

4th company


Green and white

5th company


Blue and white

6th company


Black and white

7th company


Red and blue

The measurements of the Flags:

In the reglement is stated, that new flags should be square with each side in „Rijnlandse“ measurements 3 Voet and 2 Duim (a voet = 31,4 cm, a duim 2,61 cm) so the flags should be 99,42 cm square (or approx 1 metre square).

The flagpole needs to be in total (incl metal point and shoe) 9 Rijnlandse Voet or 282,6 cm
The flagpole needs to be black.

When you look at the Dutch flags which are in the Rijksmuseum of Amsterdam (and which were pictured in an earlier post) you see that these flags are almost 1 meter square. Some a few cm shorter on one side and sometimes a litle bit wider.

Of the Swiss flags is said, that they are bigger then the Dutch flags so probably these are an older model (or they just didn't conform to the dutch standards).  

Standardbearer Hollandse garde

Clothing/hats officers
Except the guard, no other regimental officers may have gold or silver lacing on their coats. Even the buttons need to be of the metal of the regiment and no gold or silver ones.
Only on hats it is allowed to have gold or silver lace of max one "Rijnlandse duim" of 2,61 cm. 
The knots on the hat of the officer will always be in orange and silver.
Neckties will be always black.

Clothing/hats other ranks
Coats of corporals are always the same as other ranks but their hats will be in the style of sergeants. Hatlace of other ranks is white. (probably in 1777 this was chaged in that corporals should have an epaulette on the right shoulder in silver or gold).

Coats of sergeants will have their lace etc (if the regimetn has lace) in gold or silver while the lace with corporals and other ranks will be in white. 
Neckties will be always black.

Lace of drummers
These will have as their lacing on lapels, cuffs and swallownests in the colours of the regimental commander.
Remark: afaik sadly no colours are mentioned or known but maybe for the regiments connected to the house of orange thes would be orange or orange/blue but the Hollandse Garde grenadier drummers underneath shows only gold (first) or white (second). The first one could a drummer of the band.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Dutch flags of the french revolution (an introduction)

 Although in the last post I already showed some known colonels flag, I think it is good to give some background to organisation and flags of the Dutch infantry.

In 1752 (after the War of the Austrian Succession or WAS) the Dutch infantry was reorganised by uniting 2 1-battlion strong regiments into one regiment or disbanding regiments.
The National, German and Scottish infantry had the same organisation with two battalion each of 6 musketeer and one grenadier company.
The Walloon regiment was the only one which up to around 1790 had 3 battalions but with the same amount of companies per battalion.
The Scottish regiments became in 1783 national regiments but kept its organisation.

The Swiss regiments were different:
- The Swiss guard had 4 companies per battalion
- The Swiss line regiments had 6 companies per battalion.
Both had about 10 grenadiers incorporated into each company and didn't have a seperate genadiercompany. It is possible and likely, that in the field the grenadiers were combined into a seperate unit or company.

As units were combined or disbanded in 1752 I think at that time most new regiments received new flags although the first time they would carry the older flags until replaced

Most of the regiments would have two flags per battalion which probably was one colonels and three regimentals but up to now I haven't find a definitieve proof of that. So maybe each battalion had one colonels and one regimental flag.
The Swiss had 4 (guard) or six (line) flags per battalion which probably resulted in one colonel and seven regimental flags (guard) or one colonel and eleven regimental flags (line). It is not known if the Swiss regiments had all their flags with them when on campaign in the 1793-1795 period.

Regarding the flags themselves:

Colonels flags

- The colonelsflag were probably in white but the existing flags (in the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam) are now in an offwhite (called ecrú) colour.
The wexisting flags measure about one meter square.

The flags shows:

x- mostly the coat of arms of the province who paid for the regiment. In this case the provincial coat of arms was placed on a field of trophies as flags, canons, weapons etc.
x- sometimes the coat of arms of the Republic itself (this could be on the back of a colonels colour as is known by the flag of the province of Overijssel
x- the Orange related (eg Orange Friesland regiment) or Hollandse garde regiments probably all had heraldic signs of the Orange family on the colonels flag
x-and probably some colonels flag had the coat of arms of the (country of the) proprietor eg in the German regiments

As said, the flag could have two identical sides but also known is the Overijssel flag with one side the coat of arms of Overijssel and on the back the coat of arms of the Republic.

Of some provinces, the flags are known and were portrayed in the previous blogpost but other are not known.

Regimental flags

- The regimental flag(s) were coloured and bore probably the coat of arms of the proprietor. In the case in which the Stadholder was the proprietor, this regimental was orange as is shown on pictures of the flag of the Hollandse Garde.

No flags of National Regiments exists anymore and only some of Orange regiments and of German regiments. So only you can make an educated guess how the flas would have looked. Someday my interpetration will be published here.

 Flags of Swiss regiments

These have a different history to the Dutch and look different; they have their own kind of colonels flag (but all in white) and as regimental flag the well known flag with multicoloured flames. 

I have pictures of most of these colour from various sources so these will appear here sometime if I find the time.

Flags of hired units

This means eg French emigré units (no flags known yet) and German hired troops (some known).

If available, these will appear here sometime.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Colonel flags/colours of the Dutch regiments 1793/1795

Dutch "national" regiments had two flags per battalion. 

Not known is if each battalion had a colonels flag and one regimental flag but probably the first battalion had one colonels and one regimental flag; the second battalion two regimental. This was usual in most other countries.

In practice this doesn't matter for the 1793-1795 period as national regiments had just one battalion in the field (1793 of 8 companies, 1794/1795 of 6 companies) which, again, probably means this battalion had the colonels and the regimental flag. 

What is known of the colonels flag is, that most had the coat of arms of the paying province  or if the regiment was connected to House of Orange the colonels flag had a coat of arms connected to the House of orange (eg the three Nassau-Orange regiments).

As some of the colonels colours are in the public domain (site of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam) some known colonels colours are underneath with a remark of the regiments which had those colours.
As mostly only one colonels flag per province is known, it is of course possible that different designed provincial colours were used.

For dating and description I used the information in the book "Vlaggen, vaandels & standaarden van het Rijksmuseum Amsterdam" by M. v.d. Brandhof which book ahs pictures of the flags but sadly only in black/white.

Regarding the measurements of the flags; in the reglement of the the 28th of February 1772 is stated that new flags should be  square with each side in „Rijnlandse“ measurements 3 Voet and 2 Duim (a voet = 31,4 cm, a duim = 2,61 cm) so the flags should be 99,42 cm square (or approx 1 metre square).
I have given underneath the measurements of each flag in the Rijksmuseum and they are almost of this size. 

Starting with the colonelsflag of  Nassau-Orange regiments. There are two flags in the collection of the rijksmuseum.

As there were three regiments (nr I, nr II and nr III which later received the name Erfprins) I think they all had the same colonels flag but maybe different coloured regimental ones. 

Regarding the flags, both sides are the same and the background of both flags is ecru or off-white but probably original white. The first one is 105*98 cm; the second one 108*96 cm.

The next one is the colonels flag of the province of  Groningen (also called Stad en Lande). The flag could be used by:
- infantry regiment nr 2 Van Maneil
- infantry regiment nr 9 Van Randwijck. The book "Het Staatse leger" mentions the province of Groningen as the paying province of nr 9 but the military budget shows Holland as paying province. But as also the "Naamregister der Heeren Officieren ...." of 1792 shows nr 9 on the paylist of Groningen I will go with that.

The flag measured 99*95 cm and both sides are the same. Background is ecru (but probably was white).

Then we have the flag of the province of Holland which was the richest province so she payed the most regiments. I think there were more different flags with minor differences but sadly only one is preserved. 
These could be used by the infantry regiments
nr 3 Van Dopf
nr 4 Van Wilcke
nr 5 Des Vilattes
nr 7 De Bons
nr 8 Bosc de la Calmette
nr 9 van Randwijck (maybe- see above)
nr 12 Bedaulx
nr 14 Hessen Darmstadt
nr 15 De Petit
nr 18 van Wartensleben
nr 21 Van Westerloo (mariniers)
nr 22 van Nijvenheim
nr 23 Stuart
nr 24 Bentinck
Both sides are identical. The flag measures 98*106cm. 

Te last flags preserved are 2 flags of the province of Overijssel.
There is only one regiment payed by Overijssel in the 1793-1795 period which is:
nr 20 van Geusau

So if only the first battalion had one colonels colour why exists two?
This could mean that also the second battalion had a colonels colour or it is of a regiment which doesn't exist anymore in 1793.

Also known is the backside which shows instead of the coat of arms of Overijssel in the midst of the flag, the arms of the Republic which is

There is a very faint picture of the backside in the before mentioned book. I am trying to get a picture from the Rijksmuseum. and will picture it here then.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Grenadier bearskins of the Dutch army 1793-1795


 And while we are on the subject of the grenadiers, lets have a better look at the bearskins of the Dutch grenadiers in the FR period (1793-1795).

The grenadiers of the Dutch army in this period all wore the bearskin although grenadier officers also had the tricorne as they sometimes had to be on duty with musketeers; they then had according to the reglement to wear the tricorne.

Also one remarkable thing is, that the grenadiers had to wear their hairque underneath their bearskin unlike musketeers. Most pictures show this although there are exeptions.

In the mid 1750s both the Prussian style metallic plate fronted grenadiers mitre as the more southern style bearskin was worn by grenadiers but the mitre died out and only the bearskin cap remainded worn.
Up to the 1770s a lot of regiments had a bearskin with a smaller metal front plate as the Hollandse garde is wearing in the picture underneath (picture of the Rijksmuseum of around 1770 by Tethart Philp Christian Haag).

Some pictures of the front plated bearskin:

Dutch guard (Hollandse garde) 1768

   Wallon infant

Swiss Guard; red facings but always shown with blue bag.    

 Hollandse garde with red facings and red bag 

offficers of Hollandse garde

Grenadier drummer of the Hollandse garde 

On the left Regiment Oranje Nassau I or II with red facings and red bag; on the right Garde Groningen again with red facings and red bag. The Garde Groningen was just one company strong and just ceremonial and not ment to go into the field.

Regiment Oranje Nassau III although later named Regiment Erfprins with orange facings and orange bag.

Again the regiment Erfprins (on the left) but on the right the regiment Walen (Walons-from 1790 regimental name Nassau-usingen) with white facings but blue grenadier bag.

Regiment infantry nr 24 Dundas in 1784 after changing their red coat into the normal blue coat. Facings are light blue but the bag is red.
In 1789 this became the regiment nr 24 Bentinck but the kept the same facing colour. Probably they kept their bag colour.

Regiment infantry nr 21 Westerloo (mariniers) with yellow facing and yellow bag

On the left a greandier and musketier of the Hollandse Garde (see above), the third figure is a grenadier of the regiment infantry nr 12 van Bylandt with red facings but blue grenadierbag (this regiment became in 1789 Bedaulx but kept its red facings and probably its bag colour)
On the right the 5th battalion Waldeck used as light infantry.

On the left again the Swiss guard (facings red, bag blue) and on the right the Swiss regiment of May with red facings and red bag.

This picture is of the Scots regiment nr 3 (Stuart) . When the uniform changed from red to blue in 1783 (and it received the regimental nr 23 but kept the name of Stuart) it kept its facing colour.
It is of course possible that it also kept its red grenadier bag.

Conclusion regarding the bag colour: mostly the bag was coloured the same as the facing colour but exceptions found were:
Swiss Guard: facing red, bag blue
reg inf nr 12 Bijlandt/Bedaulx: red facing, blue bag
reg inf nr 24 Bentinck: light blue facing, red bag
reg inf nr 23 Stuart: yellow facing, red bag
reg Wallon/Nassau Usingen: facing white, bag blue 

Regarding grenadiers it should be mentioned that the first (or Lijf) company of the guard dragoon regiment consisted of grenadiers which wore the bearskin.
Some pictures of the dragoon grenadiers are underneath but it should be mentioned that mostly a red bag is pictured but the last one show a blue bag. Probably a mistake or a change of colour?


pictures from the Dutch Army Museum (NMM)

Thursday, April 8, 2021

OOB Dutch grenadiers

In the last post I had presented two 28mm grenadier battalions.
So to give more background, underneath are the composition of the combined grenadierbattalions in the 1793-1795 period. 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

The first Dutch French Revolutionary units

Here I present you our first French revolutionary Dutch units. As a slow painter there are always more units on the painting table then are ready but here it goes (with some information about the source of the paintings: 

Dutch unit  Huzaren van der Hoop (1787-1794) which was renamed for the rest of the revolutionary period as the Huzaren van Timmermans. They had 2 squadrons in the field although some say 3 sq.

Figures are Forgotten Glorious which sadly aren't with us anymore (afaik).

Picture of a colonel of the Huzaren van der Hoop/Timmermans

Light infantery unit of the jagers van Löwenstein-Wertheim. This unit was hired by the Dutch in 1794 and the unit went into British pay in April1795.

They are portrayed in the earlier Bavarian Rumford helmet. They are also depicted in a kind of Austrian jäger Korsehut in the Osprey MAA nr 328.
Figures are by Bicorne/Connoisseur and are in fact early Würtemberg figures.

Some pictures of the unit. The third picture is from the "Jassenboekje" which is a great source for the Dutch army of the FR period.

Following are the first two painted Dutch combined grenadier battalions.
The first one is the batallion of Van Buseck consisting, from left to right of the grenadiercompanies of  Van Brakel (reg nr 10) in yellow, Van Dopf (reg nr 3) in green, van Quadt (reg nr 13) in yellow and Nassau-Usingen (regiment Walloon) in white facings. 

The second battalion De Larrey consists (again from left to right) of the grenadiers of the regiments Erfprins (in orange), Oranje Nassau nr 1 (red), Orange Nassau nr 2 (red) and Markgraaf van Baden (in red and the only regiment portrayed in the Jassenboekje in grey trousers). 

Figures by Emperor Toad. These are great figures and my painting doens't do them justice.