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"10e Legere 1804-05 (new wargame unit)" Topic

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SHaT198404 Dec 2019 7:52 p.m. PST

My 4e Corps d'Armée 1st Division includes as 'avant garde' the regiment of the 10e Legere.

Long time in the Corps from the Camp du Boulogne, I am yet to start painting my old minifigs in the new style and organisation format, having completed most of the 1st and 3rd Divisions as they were organised at Austerlitz.

Problem is, there are no definitive references that I have found for this regiment, and my sources such as Rousellot, Bucquoy, Toussaint, Detaille and many online, virtually always depict uniforms for 1808-10-12 than earlier; or are at least contradictory over details. La Sabretache notes their use of carabinier bearskins.

Because I'm being pedantic about them in 'accurate' uniforms I have used in my agile pragmatic approach to completing the army, discretionary calls in order-
1- exact details where known;
2- earlier Revolution/ Consular uniform extended to early empire;
3- adopt a later variation known for the unit with slide back effect;
4- adopt a known uniform for the next nearest known accurate regiment.

I've taken the plain 1801 shako with front plume for chasseurs. Where known I'll throw in a sapeur; porte-aigles are always NCO's etc.

Given the 'swap' rate (slow or fast) of uniform colour, detail, embellishments and equipment, who has anything on this unit for me?
All help appreciated,
regards davew

von Winterfeldt05 Dec 2019 6:25 a.m. PST

I've taken the plain 1801 shako with front plume for chasseurs.

I wouldn't opt for a plume at the front, but for the side, as ample contemporary prints show them like this for 1804 – 1806 – includings secondary sources you cite.

A book seemingly forgotten todays, is

Quennevat : Les vrais soldats de Napoléon, it was once dirt cheap on second hand market.

For what did you opt for shako plates and buttons? Brass?

SHaT198405 Dec 2019 3:09 p.m. PST

Thanks vw
Of course you are correct about side plumes. I've already 'kitbashed' all my other lights with side plumes/ falling horehair on bicorne (Bn des Tirailleur du Pô) or 1801 shako (both Bns 26e Legere and Tirailleur Corse).

As Junots corps d'elite @the 'Camp' from 1802 were issued nice clean new shakoes and equipment I'd wager the proximity was enough that their 'look' was taken on by someone as administratively astute as brother Soult, also adjacent to St.Omer.

1801 shakoes with either small silver diamond plate at front; or button, cocarde and aurore lace strap front or side. Removing extant cords was a PIA so I recast some clean shakoes and replaced heads etc. Did same on a regiment of Chasseur a Cheval as well. Not perfect but no longer looks as 'samey'. (I went on that detour a long while ago, hence my slackness at getting a 'straight' unit painted!

Hence, my 10e Legere will look more 'traditional' in uniform style to what gamers expected to see. Waiting definition, knowing that according to Rousellot there were many legere regiments that still used brass button/ metalware, I haven't formed an opinion. A bit like the cuffs and flaps- some legere adopted pointed plain blue piped white; others maintained standard line designs until mide-Empire took over. I'm not at all convinced by yellow cuffs/flaps for voltigeurs (different subject I know).

Yes I recall the book. Even in '84 it was pricey? or unobtainable, so I'd completely forgotten about it. I still haven't catalogued my own resource collection!
cheres wine

von Winterfeldt06 Dec 2019 2:16 a.m. PST

Yes buttons and shako plates – a difficult subject, could be tin buttons but brass shako plates as the manuscript d' Otto shows for the 9e légère in 1808.

SHaT198410 Dec 2019 4:54 p.m. PST

Thanks vw, I'd have thought there 'could be' more information out there, but I guess not.
I'll document my version of the 10e Legere and then we'll see what drops out- always the way.

I have a few units to complete in part before I get to start the regiment AND its General commander. (Generally (sic)) I've adopted the principle men should never be left unled- even lead ones! Salut winkpopcorn

von Winterfeldt11 Dec 2019 2:03 p.m. PST

here a link about

10e légère


SHaT198412 Dec 2019 5:25 p.m. PST

Yeah thanks been there… great info on the Camps and effort put into training soldiers to become sea-worthy; sailing. rowing etc. and handling various naval cannon and marine/ ship security etc,; all of which gives credibility to the overall 'veteran status' of the Grande Armées various units.

But the details again still missing on uniforms; and those P/shopped 'Model soldier' (artist temporarily escapes me) graphics are bad- no way I've ever seen a two colour pompom body- it's just not possible the way they were made in the first place.

Another note; Knotel known as bullet-proof artistry, now acknowledged to have made some errors when his/their sources were re-examined, gives red cuffs pointed, whereas the Martinet prints shows standard blue.

Also two artists conflict over the same 1810-12 period of pointed or standard Swedish cuffs.

I'm going with pointed blue cuff piped white as the most common early habit; distinctives all the same as 1807+ but without the fancy brass scale epaulettes.

Cheers again_d

SHaT198417 Dec 2019 4:52 p.m. PST

I've reassessed earlier 'assignment' of troops and agree with vw that side-plumed shakoes are the predominant legere headdress at this epoch.

In fact, what I thought I had done in 'assignment'- grouping the unit with figures up to 5 years ago (!), wasn't. They are all drooping horsehair and upright left-side plumes. I'd left options open by storing both shako 'elites' and bearksin/ colpack versions, but I'm refining those down to just bearskins for carabiniers.

'Campaign' variations will include stripped bearskins and grey/blue overalls for some carabiniers but voltigeurs* in side plumed (green tipped yellow) shako only.

In the meantime I'll decide upon specific 'command' and tete du colonne figures, again the terrible business of specific distinctive/ colour attribution imperils!


*The 10e Legere being a part of the St.Omer/ Boulogne camp since 1803 (Soult 4e Corps d'Armee).

Prince of Essling21 Dec 2019 6:13 a.m. PST

Petits Soldats de Strasbourg has later uniforms for 10e Legere which you could draw on for tete de colonne:




The second plate is labelled 100 days – there another which is exactly the same but labelled 1809 but I cannot find it at present….

SHaT198425 Dec 2019 3:39 p.m. PST

Thanks PoE
I appreciate the info and yes I do consider 'linearity' in uniforms to be a real thing.

I'd seen the first but not the Nicollet set before now.

I tend to have a lower value for authenticity* of such plates because they may have been and were reproduced (original lithos) and recoloured simply for sale to anyone without caring about the accuracy (or originals). (Martinet plates being another great hoax source).

And Cent-Jours isn't a period that I regularly research either. A decade and a restoration being a long way from 1805, malheureusement.

**I learned this lesson the hard way, at not too much cost, when I bought some loose plates purported to be 'originals' in Paris but my publisher friends extinguished enthusiasm quickly by pointing out (and taking me to la sabretache library to view THE ORIGINALS) they were 19thC/ repros- good but not "originals".

I'll probably stick closer with 1809 standard colours I'd say on 1805 attributes uniforms. I reviewed Bucquoy again and even his lack of specifics points to black hole about the regiment.
cheers d

SHaT198407 Apr 2021 5:28 p.m. PST

2021- Of Mice and Men…

While the year past was productive in many ways, I didn't manage to get this one completed by Christmas as I'd promised myself I would.

My research notes give a clue:-

All 1801 shako regimental dress. Chasseurs (nearly all) primed in blue w green epaulettes-distinctives; falling horsehair plumes on left.

Elites to be sorted and detailed; as at Oct20 there is no documented proof of any bearskin/ ourson (neither text, regulation nor illustrations) being worn in any period least of all by 1805, so these are rejected. The only records of regiment are from 1807-08 period forward when two new forms of uniform existed between 1807 and 1810. The early period is missing.

Benjamin Zix- from life illustration shows a carabinier in walking out dress in shako with right hand red plume, at cafe with others! Dec20-*Dr P Martin Strasbourg (own collection!).

Agonising over the details, I side-stepped the issue and decided Gen. Morand and his aides would be an easier target in the interim.
So they are well progressed to completion- both mounted and on-foot versions just for s 'difference', since we know they did go on foot at the battle in 'conference' with his peers and colleagues.

Where above I stated "I'll probably stick closer with 1809 standard colours" I probably should have said 1807 uniforms, not '09!

I've completed modifications on the elites and have tackled the command, both in figurines and colours of musicians; neither the blues of later musicians but a harking back to the to the period of 'contrast' colours even if the colour didn't actually exist! Red with yellow border lace is a pretty common adoptive in the post-Consular period among many regiments (eg artillery corps).

cheers d

SHaT198409 Apr 2021 4:08 p.m. PST

>>Agonising over the details ~

Progress of sorts- Well here's an audition pic of the main people in the commands and variations of who may appear in the final casting:-

IMG_5234_10e Legere_sm
by DaveW, on Flickr.

The 'rest' are still in wardrobe or make-up !
Cheers d

SHaT198410 Apr 2021 10:06 p.m. PST

My reasoning for creating modified elite company personnel begins with this 'real life' watercolour by contemporary illustrator Benjamin Zix; an illustrated engraving dated 1803 of a "Fracas' at an inn" between various French regiments and some attractive locals.

Notably identified is the 10e Legere Carabinier and a musicien of an unrecognised unit. However I'm happy to apply an 'by association' rule and say he could also be from the 10th Legere.

--Plate #9 reprint from ©Dr P Martin Strasbourg publication (taken from own collection!): Soldaten Im Bunten Rock -The French Army 1789-1807 W.Keller &Co Stuttgart 1969 ..

IMG_5248_Plate9_Zix_10e Legere Carabinier et musicien_sm.

The uniform details are interesting and not without speculation on their accuracy, despite being very close to 'regulation'.

While the basic uniform is as expected, the variations we see depicted are from top to bottom:

1- 1801 shako with plume on right hand side; also a red flamme 'wing' edged black, wrapped around the shako body (which therefore covers any plate that may have been worn); and a single cord in white adorns the right hand side, ganse and silver button, while it wraps around the shako with just a knotted front section. Again notably the racquetes and flounders are suspended only by a single cord.

2- A white tab and apparently a minute button on front collar.

3- A red or scarlet veste, not blue or white. These are rarely noted but not unknown.

4- Pointed cuff piped but shown with apparent piping also on the sleeve opening seam (which I'd assume is in error).

In Order-
Epaulettes, belt, blue piped white overall habit (long tails) and breeches, black gaiters piped (colour indistinct but we could assume red) and an older style briquet being carried for persuasion.

Distinctive features and relatively easy modifications including some additional painting to make an even more distinctive unit.

Was the regiment wearing this a year or two later? Who's to say? We can see that they did get new uniforms issued by or during 1807 as multiple documents have shown the 'new' uniforms with 'modernised' features- 1806 shako; doubled cords, revised plumage, colours and placements etc. for soldiers and a stated tete-du-colonne.

Certainly I was surprised to read in the post battle 'Situation'of Dec 4 1805 that the regiments costume was in general "bon etat".

A larger copy is available if wanted.

Cheers d

SHaT198426 May 2021 8:29 p.m. PST

I've noted, in the organisations and prmotion of both individuals, and units, or formations, some inherent 'bias' that is simplified in evasive form as "Napoleons dstrust of the members of the Armée du Rhin" and those associated with Moreau in particular.

I've not seen or heard of his specifics on this; the 'egalitarian' elan of the armée, the pro-revolution stance, 'their dislike' of his (Bonaparte) seizure of power and inherent distrust of such actions, and his supporters etc.

So while I am consciously analysing these matters, I've also started a spreadsheet that shows the 'creation' of units within the Revolution timeframe, and their progress or lack of it through the early Empire. Of necessity this will include theor campaigns, alliances and Armies in passing. were the units under Moreau less employed by Bonaparte?

Certainly, it appears the 10e Legere didn't suffer any consequences before 1802; whereas the 14e Legere were it appears treated as second class and not given the best 'posts' available. Is this a condition of the bias we see?

regards ~davew

von Winterfeldt28 May 2021 10:56 a.m. PST

also read the memoires of Noel, and colonel de Trefcon (15e de ligne)

SHaT198428 May 2021 10:17 p.m. PST

Thanks but cannot locate either on here or at Gallica-
'Noel' coming up with 32k entries as you may expect; latter not at all except a town name and/ or FPWar 1871~ period.

SHaT198428 May 2021 11:05 p.m. PST

I should say, as I've been scouring my own hidden and buried treasure resources now that 'events' have plateaued, I'm using Michel Petards excellent if dated article "L'Homme de 1804- Le Chasseur d'Infanterie Legere" as the basis for my 10e Legere with variations I've been able to discern.

Published in 1979 in 'Uniformes' No.31 and the bound Album #6; pp20-26 covers contemporary illustrations and regulations. Where derivations are noted by him, I'm using the same synthesis for my own unit and what information has appeared since. They include plates from Hoffman, Zimmermann, Otto and Berka. His own artwork of course is superb.

Which of course for this unit in particular, is. mostly for the mid-Empire and nothing for the first two years apart from my Zix plate. Full size copies are on the Flickr site.

1- The lead page:-

IMG_5371 .

2- Full Dress and Campaign variant:-

IMG_5372 .

3- Later Style uniforms updated for 1807 (after Otto M.):-

by DaveW, on Flickr.

Trust this goes some way to defining where I'm heading; although the chasseurs of my 'regiment' of the 10e Legere is still equipped with falling side plumes (!) in the main.


von Winterfeldt29 May 2021 12:04 a.m. PST

Where does he get the bugle shako "plate" from?

The nice thing about the early French light infantry are -
brass shako plates.

SHaT198429 May 2021 5:14 p.m. PST

Good question- and you had me worried for a moment even though I'd thoroughly read the article several times!

Petard states p21-'Le shako de l'infanterie legere nous est précisésment décrit du 4 Brumaire An X' and the citation given:
"Hauteur de 6 pouces, 7 lignes, largeur du haut 8 pouces; la forme couverte…; plaque de cuivre fait en cor de chasse, de deux pouces 3 lignes dans son diamétre et de 3 pouces dans le haut du cor; visiere… "

Complete description of components, without chin scales of course,
regards dave

SHaT198423 Jun 2021 4:20 p.m. PST

Restoring the removed pics____







4- And their General, the resolute Morand in two model forms:-

IMG_5325_sm General de brigade Morand
by DaveW, on Flickr.



SHaT198414 Oct 2021 10:59 p.m. PST

Wondering if your 'future records' for the 10eme Legere include any junior officers (sous-officiers) that were promoted 'out' from the Garde Chasseurs prior to 1805?

I've a relic of times past who I'm reluctant to repaint in any way, in favour of preserving his history (the larger units of garde I disbanded decades ago).

Apart from a little yellowing from an old varnish he's next to my best painting, and I'd like him to lead some chasseurs of the regiment.

The model regiment is getting closer and is next up in the 'assembly' cycle so I now have final decisions to make on the officers who are peppering the ranks.

Many thanks,

SHaT198424 Oct 2021 8:23 p.m. PST

Wondering if your 'future records' for the 10eme Legere include any junior officers (sous-officiers) that were promoted 'out' from the Garde Chasseurs prior to 1805?

I've found one who was transferred to the 12eme Legere, so it did happen BEFORE the Austrian campaign…

Michman28 Oct 2021 4:59 a.m. PST

"10eme Legere …. any junior officers … that were promoted 'out' from the Garde Chasseurs prior to 1805?"

Jean-Baptiste Piedfer

Description : oval face with a high forehead, small nose, average mouth, round chin, dark brown hair and blue eyes
Drawing :


1 May 1772 --- born at Évreux in Normandy, son of Pierre Piedfer and Marie née Desprét
7 Feb 1794 --- entered service, likely in the "1er bataillon du 54e régiment d'infanterie (ci-devant Roussillon)", then with the Armée du Nord at Cambrai
22 Aug 1794 --- passed to the "1er bataillon de la 107e demi-brigade de bataille" formed by amalgamation of the 1er/54e d'infanterie and the "3e & 4e bataillons des volontaires de l'Yonne", then in Bonnaud's division on campaign in Belgium
1795 --- with the Armée du Nord
13 Feb 1796 --- to the Armée de l'Ouest, in the Vendée
11 Aug 1796 --- entered as a grenadier in the "gardes du Corps législatif", at Paris
28 Nov 1799 --- passed to the new "garde des consuls"
1800 --- with the Armée de Réserve
28 Dec 1800 --- promoted to caporal
29 Dec 1800 --- promoted to caporal-fourrier
5 Mar 1802 --- promoted "sergent-major de la 6e compagnie du 1er bataillon de chasseurs à pied de la garde des consuls"
1805 --- at the "camp de Boulogne"
23 Sep 1805 --- promoted "sous-lieutenant au 10e régiment d'infanterie légère", then with 2 battalions on campaign in Saint-Hilaire's 1st division of Soult's VI corps and the 3rd depot battalion in the process of relocating from Évreux to Strasbourg
23 Nov 1806 --- promoted to lieutenant
1 Oct 1807 --- made a member of the Legion of Honor
~1810 --- promoted to capitaine
1812 --- posted to the 4th battalion of the regiment, part of Partouneaux's 12th division of Victor's IX corps
27 Nov 1812 --- wounded at the battle of Borisov
28 Jan 1813 --- died from his wound, age 40

Sources :

SHaT198428 Oct 2021 12:03 p.m. PST

Splendid Michman, absolutely!
Thanks for all this work, my 'ancien' figure can now proudly appear and lead his company upon the enemy in the newly created 10eme Legere!
I think the late promotion to the regiment is excuse enough to appear in the Garde Chasseurs uniform.

Michman28 Oct 2021 2:04 p.m. PST

"late promotion to the regiment is excuse enough "

Yes, I thought the same when I saw the promotion date : "A-ha ! Here's Dave's man !"


MarbotsChasseurs29 Oct 2021 3:17 p.m. PST


A little late to the party, but here is Piedfer service record from 2YB564 10e Legere An X.1811. Great information Michman! I have not seen one of the links you posted and will take this weekend to investigate further!


I knew I did not recognize his name when I finished the regimental rolls for the battle of Thann for the 10e Legere because it shows that from 1808 through at least July 1809 he was in recruitment and not with the war battalions.


more information from 2YB566 10e Legere 1810.1813


Sadly the second picture will not enlarge enough to be seen, but it says he was s a prisoner of war in 1812

Michman29 Oct 2021 11:21 p.m. PST

Great info !

The entry in service date differ between the records/ However, in both he is shown joining before the 107e demi-brigade de bataille was formed. I think this indicates he was in the 54e d'infanterie (ci-devant Roussillon) and not a volontaire from the Yonne.

I assumed he died in Russan captivity, but hesitated to list that based only on an assumption. A few of the officers of Camus' brigade slipped away and evaded capture, so capitaine Piedfer notionally could have been dragged away from Borisov with them. I am not surprised he wasn't.

MarbotsChasseurs30 Oct 2021 4:39 a.m. PST


It seems most of the time the dates of birth differ from those found in the service records in Base Leonore. Sometimes just a few days and occasionally a few years. Also, wounds are not usually reported in the early volumes of the 2YB folders compared to the later ones done in 1816. However, most of the time where the man served matches up perfectly.

When looking at the 3e Ligne controles de troupes we find that when a fusilier who was scratched off the rolls due to long absence was actually wounded and taken prisoner in 1807 at the Battle of Heilsberg, where his comrades reported that he died in captivity.


At least when it comes to the controles de troupes and even officers service records, what is written down is not always correct and sometimes we see edits later that either confirm the man died or ended up serving somewhere else. I am surprised no one reported him dead or at least wounded.

Does the Vendee link you provided have information on Legere Regiments? Sadly the controles de troupes are only available for Ligne regiments at the moment and I am looking for information on the 7e, 10e, 13e, and 15e Legere regiments.

SHaT198431 Oct 2021 4:30 a.m. PST

Great info guys.
I know it's not everyones "cup o' tea" but the fact that such material is available at all amazes me.
32 years ago I had to travel to Paris for 3 months to get a miniscule portion of what we have now!
Thanks a million __ ;-)

Michman31 Oct 2021 2:43 p.m. PST

Marbot & Dave,

"Sadly the controles de troupes are only available for Ligne regiments" – tell me about it !

The Vendée records that I linked cover all units equally …. that is, poorly. There is some good order of battle information, occasional personal info (especially for staff positions) and lots of checking on the "revolutionary spirit" of the troops. However, as Dave notes, it's great to have on-line compared not not having ready access. And the index-page search function seems very reliable.

The "few days" variation in birthdates is often birth vs. baptism. The larger variations are a mixture of administrative disinterest and lack of certain knowledge by the soldier himself, at least for rankers. The Base Leonore files often include a copy of the member's birth record and/or a witnessed declaration of indentity – as I am sure you have noticed. These appear to be restoration-era attempts to clean up and accurize the records. The Base Leonore recotds are very often missing for a member who died before 1816. So, it appears that the restoration-era book-keeping was more fiscally oriented than historical. So, if you find an award in "Fastes de la Légion d'honneur" or the 1805 or 1814 "Annuaires" for the Légion, and nothing in Base Leonore, there is a good chance your man did not make it to 1816.

And for M. Piedfer ….

I usually try to find the birth record in the department archives, if I want to be sure. In the instant case, there were 13 parishes in Évreux, not counting near-by villages, some now gone. And the records had gaps. I think it would take some days to find our man, or confirm the recotd was missing.

He should have had an earlier matricule upon joining the garde des consuls. It should be in the first volume for the grenadiers à pied. I can find other early chasseurs à pied before their separate contrôle was started – usually with a reference like "passé au chasseurs". But not our man. Did I miss him somehow ?

I would have liked to see a second recording of his birth and early service info. His officer's record seems copied (almost verbatim) from his matricule for the chasseurs.


No comments on my sketch ? I am no "artiste", but I rather liked it myself.

Let us hope that the colonel Pouzet did not object to one of his officers keeping the mustache required of a sous-officier de chasseurs à pied.

SHaT198401 Nov 2021 3:04 a.m. PST

Haha I wasn't going to comment on the 'mug-shot' as I wasn't too sure it was serious or not! Or a facsimile of some other article suggesting his visage.
Yes very good but maybe a bit overfed do you consider?

I look forward to more tangible material, as and when available. Now I have cleared away some outstanding work projects I am fully committed to completing the 10eme by years end!
Published here:- TMP link

Just as a break today I read a little, then 'coloured' some medieval archers ;-)


MarbotsChasseurs01 Nov 2021 8:56 a.m. PST


Thank you for the great information. My interest is in the officer's and soldier's service records as well as the XB files of each regiment, so it is great to hear from someone who understands the genealogy side of research. I need to work more on the department archives and get a better understanding of how they function.
I look forward to searching more through the link you provided.

When it comes to Base Leonore, it can be an extremely frustrating process regarding what is available. As you said, men who did not survive to 1816 are rarely found, but there are a few exceptions, it seems, when it comes to officers such as Generals.

Am I wrong to assume the service records when the soldier is retiring are legal documents where both the officer/soldier is present, and the information is recorded through verbal declarations by that officer/soldier and whatever written material available to whoever is filling out the paperwork in the depot? I always enjoy reading the surgeons' in-depth descriptions of wounds, which give a lot more information than just being wounded in the arm.

I thought your drawing gives a good description of our man and 100% better than I could do! As we find with some soldiers, I wonder how he would look with an aquiline nose or hook nose?


A list of the NCOs of the 10e Demi-Brigade and what Captain's company they served in. 2YB563 an VI- an X.


Michman01 Nov 2021 8:57 a.m. PST

No artistic claim at all – just "police sketch" software based on his description and typical fashion for hair, mustache, etc.

Overfed ?
In France, the people of Upper (east) Normandy do have a stereotype of eating lots of butter, drinking lots of apple-based liquor, being descended from Vikings, and telling bad jokes about Bretons …. as well as being congenitally unable to give a straight answer to any simple question.


And the garde had a reputation for eating much better/more than the army.

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