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"[Fr 1800] More on the Army of Moreau" Topic

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03 Dec 2021 1:53 p.m. PST
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  • Changed title from "[Fr 1800] More on the Army of" to "[Fr 1800] More on the Army of Moreau"

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SHaT198417 Apr 2021 7:16 p.m. PST

Thanks to fabulous Markus Stein site and his personal dedication to the spirit of sharing, from link some fabulous Wm.Kobell original contemporary artwork. Copies available by using the download menu (disk)…

Here's his explanation of the two primary prints and 3 detailed shots_

>>Two paintings by the famous painter Wilhelm von Kobell, showing French revolutionary troops in front of Munich, were exhibited as part of the 1809 campaign exhibition at the Bavarian Army Museum in Ingolstadt.

They must be troops of the army of Moreau, which operated in the Munich area and won the Battle of Hohenlinden against the Austrian Army in 1800.

Kobell is known for his good observation of the uniforming and equipment of the soldiers and is therefore a very good, contemporary image source for the uniformed customer.

The paintings are owned by the Federal Republic of Germany.

1- The first painting with a camp scene in the northeast of Munich.
2- The second painting with a camp scene near Oberföhring, whose church can be seen in the background.

There follows 3 details from above.
3- An excerpt from the first painting with French lights and line infantry. Consider the heterogeneous clothing – THE mark of the revolutionary infantry – and the attachment of the epaulettes to the infantry in rear view.
4- The left section in the second picture shows two cavalry of the Heavy Cavalry (which should soon be converted into Kürassiere) as well as a line infantry. In the background a (exerting?) Group of line infantry.
5- The right section of the second painting shows relaxed line infantry in the bivouac. Note the structure of the camping space by means of boards (*doors) and other aids.
*_dww trans.

Detail -2 pic.

regards d

SHaT198424 Apr 2021 5:53 p.m. PST

Armée du Rhin
Perhaps I should have written here, rather than under Moreau's portrait… TMP link

On reading up, because I can't let it go… as so overlooked in historical writing (accuracy and relevance); the excellent 'Obscure Battles' site and commentary worthy of a true historian, Hohenlinden.

Interested to note that in 60,000 men only ONE demi-brigade legere appears; significantly way below the ratio given as 'normal' and given the significant broken terrain of the theatre.

Yet the line battalions are noted as defending, attacking or crossing woods and defiles as if they weren't there at all. Seems a 'real' French general didn't need legere??

And on another point- it was the 14eme demi-brigade legere. Is it a coincidence that this regiment was sent far away to Italy at some time and more or less 'exiled' on Corfu for a subsequent 5 years or so (I know Corfu was no picnic! meh).

Am I just succumbing to poisoned conspiracy theorists?

Given that the above, and that the deployed force only contained one demi-brigade legere, the 14eme, does it follow that those depicted are from that regiment?
I have no other OB of the period/ campaign.


The uniforms look very smart, a bit 'Germanic' in the casquet area that looks more like a later raupenhelm of the Bavarians?

There's one of each playing cards with the carters/ drivers- a chasseur/ scout with green epaulettes and no plume; a carabinier with red epaulettes and plume; and lying aside an ordinary chasseur with no attributes. And of course the one on guard duty in brown greatcoat.

von Winterfeldt25 Apr 2021 5:42 a.m. PST

in case you are interested there is a book by Albrecht Adam about Moreau's army, he made scetches and drawings as a 14 year old – and fabulous they are.

von Winterfeldt25 Apr 2021 5:58 a.m. PST

I agree not that many demi brigades d'infanterie légères but more than one.

Corps Lecourbe

Division Mollitor

1st light infantry, one battalion
10th light infantry, 2 battalions

Divison Gudin

10th light infantry – one batalion

Corps Moreau

Division Richepance

14th light Infantry, one battalion

Division Decauen

14th light Infantry, two battalions

One would have to check the regimental history of the 14th light infantry.


Schneider, Günter : Hohenlinden 1800 – die vergessene Schlacht

Another very usefull OdB is in Picard : Hohenlinden, please look at usefull stuff for links

SHaT198425 Apr 2021 4:33 p.m. PST

OK vW thanks; I concede that what fought at Hohenlinden was not the 'entire' Army, but it does come out a strange imbalance. I note the History of the 9e Cuirassiers cites a passage of the 10e Legere earlier in the campiagn.

Of course as we know attrition, illness and strategic demands alter human plans immensely and thereby the changes in manpower available. Of course there are possibly 60,000 from the army cited as being 100k in tottal.

I can see the similarity with other campaigns- only a month earlier they were in 'armistice', then a race and advance to a fortuous position against another inept enemy command.

The roll of French Generals (and as 'subordinates') present is every bit as spectacular as any 'Napoleonic' battle!

As you say I'll consult what sources I can reach.
I'd seen the impressive Albrecht Adam illustrations of the 1812 force in von Pivkas book but wasn't aware of an earlier one at all. No surprse there…

I searched 'Useful Stuff' page by page but could not find it. However it is easily locatable: hohenlinden00pic (30MB)


Also, your other relevant info found in: TMP link
in response to questions on Bavarain uniforms, using same sources (the excellent 'Obscure Battles' site and commentary),

many thanks,

SHaT198410 Jun 2021 5:43 a.m. PST

Interesting further mysteries- on researching the history of one of the 'invisible men' of N. entourage, one de Caulaincourt.

HE was a young noble, yet he and his family kept their heads, positions and finances despite everything that had gone before.
When his 'assignment' to assist the French Ambassador to the Grand Porte was over- he became unemployed, although by virtue of being ADC to his relatives (Generals) he held the rank of Chef d'Escadron in 1798. He had been a junior officer in both the 9th, then 8th Cavalry after that.

Given support for advancement, he was soon to make the grade Chef de Brigade (Colonel) of no less a prestigious unit than the 2eme Carabiniers when their CdB retired or transferred.

He fought and led men well and had been wounded several times by then, securing priase all round. It was at Hohenlinden that the Carabinier Brigade under d'Espagne, appears to have been on the left wing of the army where initially they fought.

The Brigade was separated from its Divisional commander, one Gen. d'Hautpoul who wasn't far from the army centre with Moreau, in support of Gen. Ney, and with another famous name of the time, Grouchy.

The action of the Brigade initial fighting at Erding, about 15km North of Hohenlinden is mentioned in his biography (called memoires) but nothing about the rest of the day.

…Moreau again entered on campaign and, on the 12th frimaire an IX (3 December 1800), it was at Hohenlinden.

The Second Carabiniers, at whose head Caulaincourt is again, is attacked by seven hundred horsemen and two battalions at Erding. They inflicted considerable losses on their attackers and maintained their positions. It is said that, in the battle itself, Moreau offered his colonel the rank of brigadier general and that the latter refused him not to leave his "dear Carabiniers".

Anyone shed more light on the matter or on this auspicious Brigade, or personnel?

The nearest enemy (Austrian) force was under the well known commander GM Kienmayer, which however had orders to march Southward, not West to where d'Espagne held ground.


SHaT198413 Jun 2021 5:03 p.m. PST

Upon another tack (that's a nautical term for the unintiated…) – seen in the paintings above, and a whole heap of others- the [French] cavalry troopers wearing a yellow over black plume on their hatwear?

And you see early ADCs and some hussards also adorned. Surely, logic would tell you that a form of misunderstanding could occur, given those are the 'national' colours of the enemy- Austria.

I can't fathom how this comes about!

However, I can see me creating some in the near future, as an Armée du Rhin type 'Hohenlinden' force becomes a reality. The perfect figures are the old Minifigs 'Spanish Dragoons' in a wide bicorne with suitable horse furniture. Better than their 'new sculpt' version.
regards dave

Prince of Essling14 Jun 2021 5:15 a.m. PST

Are you sure yellow over black? Could they have been red over yellow over blue which would equate with "l'Armée des Patriotes"?

Prince of Essling14 Jun 2021 5:34 a.m. PST

Picard's 3 Volumes including maps on Gallica:

La campagne de 1800 en Allemagne Tome 1 par le commandant Ernest Picard
Author : Picard , Ernest (1863-1913).
Author : Azan, Paul (1874-1951).
Publisher : (Paris)
Publication date : 1907-1909 link

La campagne de 1800 en Allemagne Tome 2 par le commandant Ernest Picard
Author : Picard , Ernest (1863-1913).
Author : Azan, Paul (1874-1951).
Publisher : (Paris)
Publication date : 1907-1909

La campagne de 1800 en Allemagne. CARTES par le commandant Ernest Picard
Author : Picard , Ernest (1863-1913).
Author : Azan, Paul (1874-1951).
Publisher : (Paris)
Publication date : 1907-1909

SHaT198414 Jun 2021 3:27 p.m. PST

Thanks, that's the clearest volumes yet from the source.
I have an original Picard on 'La Cavalerie' that I frequently consult for specific gems.
They are no 'Ospreys' but his talent is obvious, merci…

Yes the colours are clear…

SHaT198414 Jun 2021 4:39 p.m. PST


Picard_ Vol 1

(4) Moreau se plaignait de n'avoir pas 12 bataillons d'infanterie légère sur 120 dont se composait l'armée. (Au Ministre de la guerre, Bâle, 10 ventôse.)

Certainly wasn't shy asking, nay demanding, help for the impoverished, unpaid and in part rebellious, Armée de Moreau…

Perhaps this is why they fell out so badly- showing up the poor Government (not directly Bonapartes fault_) ministries over pay, supply, equipment, clothing and horses, recruits etc.
Even Massena gets a slap for "taking the front line officers to Italy"… with him.


SHaT198416 Oct 2021 12:04 p.m. PST

I'm somewhat gutted to find out now after a long drag that Picards volumes are only on the 'Spring' offensive, and don't include THE Hohenlinden campaign at all.

1800 clearly was a 'year of two halves', a bit like 1813 was.

Is there another analysis/ compendium of similar status that covers the events of the 'break' in negotiations and resumption of hostilities?

On Why?
To answer my own inquisition- so many of the Armee du Rhin were sent to Santo Domingo/ Martinique etc. to perish there later.

To rationalise the hypothesis I think it's necessary to find out who died or became tragically ill there and determine the ratio of previous campaigns vs other officers (ie the Bonaparte associates).

On Military Honours
Recognising that political manipulation had a conscious effort in 'honours' awarded various regiments, never occurred to me in the past.

However having looked at research for [1805] the 108e de ligne under Friant/ Davout, I see the previous major battle before their actions at Austerlitz, was Hohenlinden.

It was front and centre literally, at the battle, and took significant stand-up and firing actions to restrain the Austrian advance until pressured by numbers.

Jeff Berrys excellent site link and graphics highlight the impressive infantry numbers [which N. later would only dream of attaining].

And this part of his graphics shows what a nice little 'centre' Division Moreau had, highlighting where the 108e stood- a small basket of names from the future, not forgetting all the others associated as well:-

OB_Hohenlinden 1800 graphic _JeffBerry© _Screen Shot 2021-10-17.

Unfortunately that political suppression of French victories has coloured our views of the period ever since. What gets repeated/ recited, with much of history I find, is the 'popular' version of the truth, not the whole…

Grouchy for example, had a whole other history long before his 1815 campaign 'infamy'…
cheers d

von Winterfeldt16 Oct 2021 11:14 p.m. PST

yes there is a volume of Hohenlinden from Picard, link see usefull stuff.

Prince of Essling17 Oct 2021 1:08 p.m. PST

by Picard, Ernest, 1863-1913; France. Armée. Service historique
Publication date 1909
Publisher Paris, H. Charles-Lavauzelle
PDF link

Note the maps are not in this version nor in the Hathi version. Unfortunately not copy showing on Gallica.

SHaT198417 Oct 2021 1:33 p.m. PST

Indeed, how could I have missed this?
I must reorganise my elctronic library as much as my physical one, for retrieval…

Many thanks, ;-?

SHaT198417 Oct 2021 6:29 p.m. PST

Yes the absence of the 10 'cartes' is indeed annoying somewhat, given the lack of other battles in the area. No search found them, either broad based or Gallica.

I also looked into 'Tableaux des armées françaises pendant les guerres de la Révolution' just because, and perplexing I see he notes the Armee du Rhin being disbanded in May 1800 and any existence of further operations, completely absent. What a strange issue!
cheers d

CrossRef: TMP link [2009]

Prince of Essling18 Oct 2021 2:36 p.m. PST

Campagne des français en Allemagne, année 1800. [Moreau, général en chef]
by Carrion-Nisas, Marie Henri François Elisabeth, marquis de, 1767-1841; Dépôt de la guerre (France)
Publication date 1829
(Apparently "Extrait du tome V du Mémorial du Dépôt de la Guerre").
PDF link
Unfortunately the maps are not folded out.

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP18 Oct 2021 2:41 p.m. PST

Unfortunately that political suppression of French victories has coloured our views of the period ever since.

And what 'political suppression' might that be?

SHaT198418 Oct 2021 8:33 p.m. PST


It is appropriate, with Napoleon, to address to Moreau a well-founded critic: "While the fate of the campaign was decided at the fields of Ampfing and Hohenlinden, the three [actually TWO] divisions of Sainte-Suzanne and the three divisions of Lecourbe, i.e. half of the army, were not on the battlefield.

What is the point of having troops when you don't have the art of using them on important occasions? " These divisions missed the battle because of the widely dispersed device adopted by the army of the Rhine to march on the Inn. Moreau had committed the fault of not sparing himself the means to concentrate his forces in good time: he himself acknowledged it.

An eminent critic says of the day of Hohenlinden a judgment that seems accurate: Thus ended this battle which, after that of Rivoli, is undoubtedly the most extraordinary of those that were fought in the first two wars of the Revolution…
Moreau succeeded because the use of his forces was wisely calculated and fortune served him well. The part that luck had in Bonaparte's successes was greatly exaggerated; but, except for Marengo's day, he was never better served by fate than Moreau at Hohenlinden.

It was said that everything that was going on in the enemy army was combined to ensure a brilliant victory. The direction of the imperial columns; operations; the failure of Lauer and Weyrother to reflect, who forgot that the centre, having a superb road, would lead long before the rest of the army, were all causes of this success; and Moreau, who was unaware of these circumstances, could not foresee anything in his calculations to profit from them.

If the centre had moved less quickly, or if Riesch, with the left wing, had arrived, according to the Austrian disposition, half an hour earlier at Christoph, Richepance would have encountered his column, and the rout in the plain of Maitenbeth would not have taken place.

Perhaps the Austrians would nevertheless have been defeated, but the battle fought as a series of combats, would have yielded only insignificant results; yet the French had not collected any trophies.

However, while Moreau could not count on such favourable incidents, his dispositions were nevertheless excellent in the state in which he [was forced] was to oppose the enemy forces.

Picard- Hohenlinden 1909, p248/9

Isn't it a rich compliment that a decisive battle can be won with just half of the troops available? The following two weeks showed that neither caution nor calamity awaited the army of Moreau, despite the criticisms.

Virtually the same occured with Auerstadt, however occupying and entire French Corps against an army more numerous, but again just as uncordinated as these Austrians were.

As much as it signalled the continuing rise of France and Bonaparte, it also sealed that success with the demise of any potential political competitors.

von Winterfeldt19 Oct 2021 5:49 a.m. PST

Indeed – Moreau ever so victimized by Boney fawners, look at his string of victories in 1800 compared to Boneys. His art of war was different to Nabulieone's far shure, but he had no time to polish it up by endless propaganda stories and blaming others.

see also

the myth of 21 battles


In case I did count correctly 19 French wins against 11 Allied ones, Moreau beats Boney with 7 to 6 victories.

SHaT198419 Oct 2021 2:20 p.m. PST

Thanks vW, I'd forgotten to revisit your blog!
A few new location names I should look up!

Yes I agree, the 'man of fortune' had a degree of capacity and fortitude across many fields and vices.
No wonder he was able to shape an army, government, country and others (outside) to meet his point of view.

I still have the [possibly naive] wonder though, 'what if' the 'tyrannical' side had been suppressed, what may have become of the Empire.


SHaT198425 Oct 2021 2:22 p.m. PST

>>Are you sure yellow over black? Could they have been red over yellow over blue which would equate with "l'Armée des Patriotes"?

Further to the 'plumes' matter, I also have another plate from Kobell which is in the series by Dr P Martin Strasbourg, issued as Soldaten Im Bunten Rock -The French Army 1789-1807. ©W.Keller &Co Stuttgart 1969

I've taken a detailed pic of the relevant portion with a declaration that I own the print I have photographed which is covered by 'Fair Use' doctrine, it is an excerpt of the piece.

IMG_0021_sm _©dww 2021_ Trimmed photo from original print in possession Soldaten Im Bunten Rock -The French Army 1789-1807

by DaveW, on Flickr.

So having got the legalese out of the way, the artwork clearly shows the yellow over black chapeau plume of the 8eme Cavalerie in 1800, by Kobell.

The analysis that goes with it calls out the 'yellow and black' plume feature. And yes the interesting officers horse in a clearly 'lighter' blue, with gold fringe all around. Also clearly not an unusual piece of the period!

Though I haven't looked it up, I'm guessing that given their facings were jonquille, regiments applied thier facing to the plumes as well. The first 6 being scarlet. There's enough similar drawings to believe these are correct colours.

cheers d

Prince of Essling26 Oct 2021 3:37 a.m. PST


Many thanks – much appreciated.

Back on Hohenlinden see Chuquet's criticisms of Picard's work in Historiens et marchands d'histoire : notes critiques sur des récents : La duchesse de Chevreuse ; La Tour du Pin ; Les vainqueurs de la Bastille ; Les discours de Danton ; Les volontaires nationaux ; Dumouriez ; Le général Dours, Stanislas Fréron ; Hohenlinden ; Le duc d'Enghien ; Duroe ; Étiene de Laclos ; Napoléon et le monde dramatique ; Madame de Genlis ; Delphine de Custine ; Le Brulard de Stendal ; A la barre de l'histoire ; La jeunesse de Louis-Philippe ; La guerre de 1870 / Arthur Chuquet
Chuquet, Arthur
Paris : Fontemoing et cie, s.a.
High definition at
Lower definition at

von Winterfeldt26 Oct 2021 5:54 a.m. PST

thanks – very interesting a pity that Chuquet did not write a book about Hohenlinden, Picards book so is unrivaled so far and will be forever there nobody is interested to devote time and energy to write a better book about the campaign or the battle.

SHaT198426 Oct 2021 10:48 p.m. PST

Ma sincère bonne volonté Sires ! Heureux d'être d'aide..

Yes I caught the Hohenlinden commentary, yet to read in detail when I read your invaluable posting. That and the second volume about the only interests- will be itching to get to see about Duroc as well.
He's my new 'must have' fellow in the LoC (with his own ADCs of course.
;-} d

SHaT198431 Oct 2021 6:42 p.m. PST

The volume I'm referencing: a plain slip card cover and separate mountable plates with a tie bound multi-lingual booklet explanation of the artwork.

IMG_5669_sm Soldaten- © by Dr P Martin Strasbourg, issued as Soldaten Im Bunten Rock -The French Army 1789-1807. ©W.Keller &Co Stuttgart 1969
by DaveW, on Flickr.

There were three in the series, however the others were of no direct interest to me.
Regards, d

von Winterfeldt01 Nov 2021 1:01 a.m. PST

There were four in the series, I have only those three touching the Napoleonic period. At this time when being published quite a treat there making available contemporary prints, as today you can get all of them and much much more on the world wide web.

SHaT198401 Nov 2021 2:58 a.m. PST

Oh ok, I'm pretty sure there were only three listed in mine at the time so I was only commenting on what I read in the material.
No doubt you are correct vW,

SHaT198402 Nov 2021 11:37 p.m. PST

I'd note for interest, that I see 'THE SOLDIERS (II) OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION, by Liliane and Fred FUNCKEN' also gave the 8th Cavalerie the same plumes. See alfonscanovas.blogspot.

I'll have to add some putty made plumes for my 6th Cavalerie obviously [the Spanish dragoons not so equipped].

Yes I agree that another tome on Hohenlinden and the final campaign from a dispassionate point of view would be interesting.

SHaT198404 Dec 2021 1:11 p.m. PST

just a note-
Helion have used the same Kobell illustration care of NYPL archives, on the Terry Crowdy latest volume (qf) selecting the section highlighting carabiners and legere, that I've similarly painted my 10e legere to match.
The 'right hand side shako plume' is a more real thing than I ever, and many, gave credit too!

So I had to make my own, of course.
Although not formally a part of the OB I'll recreate, I will make some 'Republican' 10e Legere command stands to augment the small force above, that is otherwise just line demi-brigades.

Cheers, welcome to the silliest silly season yet!

PS- I asked to webmeister to add Moreaus' name to the thread title as my little pun appeared to fall flat otherwise..

Valmy9209 Dec 2021 3:55 p.m. PST

On the black and yellow plume, note the 8th Cavalerie in the picture shows yellow facing in the collar. Facing color over black isn't uncommon. I have that same set that I got somewhere in Germany in 1987. Have framed and hung a few of them.

SHaT198409 Dec 2021 4:47 p.m. PST

Which I had noted in the frame, others appeared sceptical.
Same for certain hussars, and ADCs, and certain other officers… it is a strange effect tho.

SHaT198429 Jan 2022 2:10 p.m. PST


Lead Page with TOC- link

Author:Hr. Dr. Herbert Zima
An excerpt of Austrian accounts and reports of the battle with quotes from the Austrian authors analysis and his sources:-

The situation, on the French side, is quite different: the Army of the Rhine was an incomparable instrument in the hands of a respected superior command of the troops, its victories of the summer, but also their convinced republicanism, had forged a formidable morale of fight. The "Rhine Spartans", as their contemporaries called them, had, according to Madame de Staël, stuck to their "republican simplicity", Mathieu Dumas, who would later be Minister of War to Joseph, King of Naples, and Deputy Chief of Staff of the Imperial Army in Germany in 1809, characterizes the Army of the Rhine in 1800 as follows:

This army, even if it was not, from the point of view of numbers, the strongest, but surely the most beautiful that France had ever had, was in an exceptional state. The talent and efforts of General Dessolle, his chief of staff, had brought his organization, his training, his discipline and his maneuverability to the highest level of perfection. Its equipment and armament had been renovated and improved.
The artillery, commanded by General Eblé, one of the best officers in Europe, had been reorganized, almost completely overhauled and significantly distributed in the arsenals of Augsburg and Munich.
(2)-Picard, Hohenlinden, page 36

Unlike the other armies of the Republic, the Army of the Rhine had, in particular, a month's supply in its stores.

The rhetoric of Dumas of course side-stepping any reference to the by then discredited and banished Moreau, aiding the story of silence, of course.

Another equally damning:-

There too, a controversy developed, the day after the battle: did Moreau foresee this flank attack from the start, or did it happen, so to speak, "by chance"? ?

Without a doubt the battle of Hohenlinden was glorious for General Moreau, for the generals, the officers, the French troops. It was one of the most decisive of the war. But it should not be put on the account of any maneuver, of a combination, of a military genius. (Napoleon at Gourgaud, at Sainte-Hélène) (3)-Idem page 243.

We can certainly see in this judgment a way, psychologically motivated but not very noble, to devalue a rival and, therefore, cannot be taken seriously. Marengo's lessons should have softened the great warrior and made him more objective.

This matter also highlighted by Jeff Berry in his Obscure Battles article.

To reassert the positive:-

In his Memoirs, unpublished, but used by Picard in his study of Hohenlinden, Decaen records how, the evening before the battle, he moved ahead of his division to the French headquarters at Anzing.
Moreau wanted to order him to reinforce Grenier's left wing. On the remark that, given the state of the roads, he could not be, with the head of his division, at Hohenlinden until around 2 o'clock in the afternoon – that is to say too late – Moreau asked if he could follow Richepance's march. On Decaen's positive response, Moreau reportedly replied:

"Well, I wanted to turn the enemy with 10,000 men, it will be with 20,000!" (6)-Idem, page 171.

We can therefore say that the encirclement maneuver of the Decaen and Richepance divisions is the result of Moreau's orders.
Of course, he could not know where the Austrian main army would be, on Haag's road, when his right wing arrived. The attack on the backs was surely a matter of luck, which helps the smartest. But the attack on the Austrian flank would also have had decisive consequences. But above all we must salute the intelligent decision of Richepance – then barely 30 years old – to have decided on this attack behind the backs of the Austrians, with the few troops at his disposal. (7)-Jean Tranié

On the travesty of natural justice taken agaist the victors, he cites:-

(8) The Battle of Hohenlinden will also have unfortunate consequences for the careers of some of its protagonists, guilty of remaining loyal to Moreau, who will soon find himself in the ranks of the opposition. Decaen will be sent to Pondicherry, Richepance in Guadeloupe, where he died in 1802 of malaria. Dessolle will remain unemployed for many years. Much later, in 1815, he will vote for death at the trial of Marshal Ney.

It is a good analysis, though in several places the author is referring to Austrian thoughts of a French 'offensive', not sure whether his or the contemporaries, when of course the Austrians claimed to be following up a retreating army (it wasn't), but then coloured their own embarrassment by pretending they fought something they hadn't.

The authors quotations say it all however in his leading statements of fact:-

Assessing how the Austrian troops were led is easy – even if the diagnosis hurts (1) : a demoralized army, assembled with difficulty and made up of new recruits and a command that can only be criticized: a young and inexperienced Archduke and his mentor, who is in fact the decision maker, but who during his life has never been more than an engineer officer. Added to this is an overvalued Weyrother whose weak qualities have already been revealed to Rivoli.

The stern but not irrelevant opinion that "Weyrother, much too late for Austria, died after the battles of Hohenlinden and Austerlitz" is from the Bavarian historian, Lieutenant General Heilmann, author of a reference work on the campaign of 1800 in Bavaria.

That this army, under such a command, was sent into battle, the fault lies undoubtedly with the Emperor Francis.

The Heilmann comment may be a little harsh, if somewhat true, but again the gung-ho adoption of outlandish hypotheses and huper-exuberance on the part of the Austrian High Command is as obvious as Erz.Karls epilepsy, as noted, agreed to by a critical and jealous brother the Emperor Francis.

Schwarzenberg writes to his wife:

My God ! What a commandment, no understanding of men…. If we wanted to believe that a name alone ( Schwarzenberg refers here to the Archduke) was enough to beat the enemy, this fight avenged the Archduke Charles…. One more defeat, and the army is on the verge of disintegration; the confidence of the troops has disappeared…

For all of Napoleons failures and biases, the Allied 'cousins' all exhibited their own forms of delusion and grandeur that caused and created countless deaths and mayhem .

This however takes nothing away from the fighting men of both sides, who are shown to have acted well on many occasions.

The deeper details of the Bavarian involvement is welcome of course.


SHaT198408 Feb 2022 4:58 p.m. PST

Cross link: TMP link

vW's valuable contribution on Bavarian participation AND dress from several sources, when you get past the chaff….


SHaT198402 Mar 2022 10:31 a.m. PST

Damn Good Battle!

>> Battle of Höchstädt (1800) <<

The Battle of Höchstädt was fought on 19 June 1800 on the north bank of the Danube near Höchstädt, and resulted in a French victory under General – Moreau against the Austrians under Baron – Kray.

Love this eloquent statement:-

The campaign culminating in Kray's evacuation of Ulm was one of Moreau's most resounding triumphs. Napoleon Bonaparte had given Moreau specific instructions about the conduct of the campaign, all of which Moreau had ignored. Regardless,…

Can't find a source, so fanboyism or purely fact?

Given the proximity of timing, 5 days apart, I wonder if either side knew of the previous reversal of fortunes; and whether anyone at French command cared about Moreau's win in taking strategic territory once again?

Fascinating to get the technical details, even when an "uneven" fight ensues.
5 years later though…
regards d

von Winterfeldt04 Mar 2022 1:04 p.m. PST

no fan boyism, you have the Picard volumes about the campaign in Germany, here you will see the clashes between Boney and Moreau, Moreau was doing the campaign his way, which of course later was a big target of Boney progagande maligning the operational art of war of Moreau, that he would have been much better off to slavishly execute the plans of the First Consul.

SHaT198431 Mar 2022 1:49 p.m. PST

Thanks vW
Yes I'm crawling like a crab through multiple texts as I come across relevant info- it's too difficult to follow/ translate each book entirely end to end.

The quest continues….

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