Friday, 29 October 2010

Kavallerie Regiment Nr.5 "Hussaren von Kotyháza"

Magyar tribesmen have long been valued for their skill in the saddle.  Inspired by the success of the French Hussar Regiments, it was decided that such a formation should be raised from our Hungarian subjects.

Miklós, Graf von Kotyháza had already proven his ability leading a Freikorps of his fellow Magyars.  From the ranks of this formation came the cadre of the future KR.5. 

Wearing a uniform inspired by their traditional dress (the elaborate parade version is illustrated) these colourful troopers fulfil the reconnaissance and raiding functions with great élan.  It is supposed that they will be especially effective against the hordes of Turk light cavalry but this is yet to be proven.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.  Additionally, the majority of Officers favour a lace-trimmed Tricorn over the more traditional "Kolpak".
Horse Furniture is "Grass-Green" trimmed Gold.

Inhaber: Miklós, Graf von Kotyháza

Kavallerie Regiment Nr.4 "Dragoner von Traun"

The last of the Dragoon Regiments, KR.4 is led by the conservative and deeply religious, Leopold, Frieherr von Traun.

Now in his old age, "Abbé" Leopold is wedded to the past.   Since the death of his wife he has devoted himself to the service of the Church and State - in that order.  Insisting his men join him in pre-battle prayer, he is often mocked by those less pious. 

The martial prowess of this Regiment is not impaired by the religious nature of it's Inhaber.  In fact it could be said that von Traun's uncompromising outlook instills in his men a sense of fanaticism.   This manifests itself when fighting any "heretics" as such unfortunates are rarely taken prisoner by KR.4.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Horse Furniture is Blood-Red trimmed Gold.

Inhaber: Leopold, Freiherr von Traun 

Kavallerie Regiment Nr.3 "Dragoner di Scarzano"

Amadeo, Conte di Scarzano is a relative newcomer to Beimbach-Schönau.  He left his native Italy during the campaigns in the first decade of this Century.  His lands ravaged by the French and his peasantry having fled, he found himslef impoverished.  Prince Eugene of Savoy was impressed by his vehemently anti-Bourbon stance and championed his plight at Court.  It was at this point the Conte met and befriended our Sovereign being offered a new future in our State.

A great follower of fashion and lover of the Arts, Amadeo di Scarzano cuts an elegant figure at Court and on the field of battle.  Although somewhat effiminate in appearance, he is nevertheless a notorious rake, beloved by the ladies for his "Latin Charm".

As a "Normal" Cavalry Regiment, "di Scarzano" does not have an elite contingent.  That said, it should not be inferred that this is a second-rate formation.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Horse Furniture is Blood-Red trimmed Silver.

Inhaber: Amadeo, Conte di Scarzano  

Kavallerie Regiment Nr.2 "Grenadiere von Wanzenau"

The second Regiment of Horse bears the honoury distintion of "Grenadier".  Although their function is the same as the Dragoon Regiments, KR.2 "von Wanzenau" has been thus named due to it's outstanding performance during the Turkish Wars.

Since formation, the Regiment has been led by members of the powerful von Wanzenau family.  Through loyalty and sacrifice, they have attained an enviable postion within Beimbach-Schönau.  Holding large estates in the western portion of the State, they are amongst our wealthiest families. 

Wearing the "standard" Cavalry uniform of a Blood-Red coat and Black hat (albiet with the addition of fine white lace) the Regiment differs by maintaining an elite company that wears a fur cap similar to that sported by KV.1.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Elite Troopers have a Burned Orange and Yellow cap bag.
Horse Furniture is Blood-Red trimmed Gold/Yellow.

Inhaber: Fridolin, Graf von Wanzenau.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Kavallerie Regiment Nr.1 "Leibgarde zu Pferde"

The mounted Lifeguards are the premier cavalry Regiment and therefore the most prestigious formation in the army of Beimbach-Schönau.  The personnel are drawn from Society's upper-echelon, comprising the Landed Gentry and Foreign Nobility in exile.

Harking back to an age long gone, this Heavy Regiment wears a blackened steel cuirass - the last remnant of the Knight's Harness.  Used in the rôle of shock troops, the "Leibgarde" is known to deliver a devastating charge which has thrown many an enemy into disarray.

Unique amongst the cavalry, the Regiment wears a "Charcoal Grey" coat that is faced "Blood Red".  All troopers wear a fur cap with a cloth bag.  By regulation, Officers are permitted to wear a Tricorn hat but, as a mark of status, many opt for the archaic Cuirassier helmets of the past Century and other somewhat outlandish additions to the standard uniform.

As the name implies this Regiment's personnel provide for the Sovereign's personal security.  In time of peace Schloss Löwenstein and the other residences of our Prince are protected by the Leibgarde.  Additionally State Ceremonials usually feature an appearance by these troops.

Nominally led by the Reichfürst, day to day duties are performed by a trusted Inhaber.   Presently this position is held by an old comrade of our Prince, namely: Hieronymus, Altgraf von Rinzendorf

Like Albrecht von Michelbach (IR.2) the Altgraf first served with our Prince during the Turkish Wars of the last Century.  He is now regarded as both a trusted confidant and valuable advisor, usually to be seen in the Royal entourage.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace, buttons and cravat.
Troopers have a Blood-Red and Yellow cap bag.
Horse Furniture is Blood-Red trimmed Gold/Yellow.

Inhaber: Hieronymus, Altgraf von Rinzendorf

Monday, 25 October 2010

The Army of Hubertus II - Cavalry Regiments 1720

This the Senior branch of the army comprises five Line Cavalry Regiments.  One Cuirassier, three Dragoon (one of which is termed "Grenadier") and a Regiment of Hussars. 

Foremost amongst these is the élite "Leibgarde" (KR.1).  As in the case of IR.1 "Kronprinz" this Regiment wears a "charcoal grey" coat faced with the coat colour the "normal" Regiments.  This, in the case of the cavalry, is a dark "blood-red". 

Having eight squadrons, the "Leibgarde" is larger than a "standard" Cavalry Regiment which has six.

The three Dragoon Regiments form the "backbone" of the Cavalry.  Although they have evolved from the mounted infantry of yesteryear, they are now true cavalry soldiers capable of delivering a decisive blow on the battlefield.

The most recent addition are the Hussars of KR.5.  These flamboyant troopers are drawn from the Magyar territories on the fringes of the Reichsfürstentum.  Used mainly for scouting and escort duties, this Regiment is nevertheless a most valuable part of the Cavalry service.

As with the Infantry, in times of extremis Beimbach-Schönau can call upon a variety of ad-hoc formations.  Of these the "Croat" light cavalry have gained infamy far and wide.  They are used to harass the enemy's supply lines and raid deep into his heartland, pillaging as they go.

Details of these "Irregular" formations will be posted in due course.

The Army of Hubertus II - Field Artillery 1720

This subject was touched upon earlier but a fuller explanation may be found useful.

Light and Medium Artillery is distributed amongst the Infantry Regiments.  The number and type of guns differs from Regiment to Regiment but the tactical deployment does not.

Most of the the Regimental pieces are "Six-Pounders" or the somewhat older "Sacres".  These guns are manned by specialist personnel.  Both Officers and Men wear "Tobacco Brown" coats which are detailed as per the parent Regiment.

As illustration, please consider the following examples of Artillery uniforms.

Firstly, IR.1 "Kronprinz".   As would be expected the coat is faced "mustard yellow" with scarlet waistcoat.  The buttons and lace are "Zitron" for men and gold for Officers. 

The guns allotted to this Regiment are, not surprisingly, the best available.  In the main these are modern six-pounder pieces.

IR.2 "Markgräfin Katharina" follows the usual system departing only when it comes to the characteristic "Mourning" waistcoat.

As with all of the Army's artillery, carriages and limbers are painted dark "Blood-Red" with contrasting Dark Grey details.  Barrels are blackened. 

A final illustration of this system is provided by IR.7 "von Standorf".  This formation's artillerists are uniformed in the typical style with cream waistcoat.  

The Artillerists were originally looked down upon by the other Arms of Service.  However our present Prince has done much to address this problem by publicly demonstrating his own enthusiasm for the heavy guns and their value on the modern battlefield.

In addition to the Regimental guns, Beimbach-Schönau has a modest "Siege Train" of large calibre pieces.  This comprises some monstrous howitzers and heavy guns of varied origin.  Again the personnel wear Tobacco Brown coats but in this instance they bear their own "Burned Orange" distinctions with a "Straw Yellow" waistcoat. 

Rarely called upon, they remain in garrison, manning the defences of the State. 

This summary concludes the description of Reichfürst Hubertus' Artillery Arm.

Infanterie Regiment Nr.9 "von Pankow"

The last of the nine "regular" Line Regiments is "von Pankow".  Faced grass green it's men are farm lads recruited from the fertile pastures to the north of Beimbach.

The Inhaber, Wilhelm von Pankow, is an emigre from Brandenburg.   The reason for his self-imposed exile is unclear but it is rumoured to involve an indiscretion with a high-born lady.

Although his personal morality may be questionable, his military skills are beyond doubt and his Regiment has a fine reputation.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a "Grass-Green" and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Wilhelm, Ritter von Pankow

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Infanterie Regiment Nr.8 "von Tschernowitz"

The eighth of the Line Regiments has a large proportion of Bohemian personnel.  Many of these men are Protestant and the potential for friction is known by the High Command.

Heinrich von Tschernowitz is another local magnate but is somewhat more concilliatory than many of his peers.  He holds lands in the north-west of the State and these are heavily populated by Czech migrants.  By no means a "liberal" he has however learned that by at least tolerating his peasants' "heresy" he can avoid much conflict and increase revenues.  Boosting his income is a necessity as the Freiherr is well known for his profligate spending and personal flamboyance.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a "Sky-Blue" and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Heinrich, Freiherr von Tschernowitz

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Infanterie Regiment Nr.7 "von Standorf"

When their ancestral lands were occupied by the French Monarch Louis XIV, the von Standorf family gladly accepted asylum in Beimbach-Schönau.  This was granted due to their familial ties with Hubertus II (The von Standorfs are closely related to Reichsfürstin Wilhelmine)

As the youngest of the Colonels, Joachim von Standorf is often underestimated.   Although not yet thirty he displays great potential as a General and his eagerness for combat promises a great future.

Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Red and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Joachim, Ritter von Standorf

Infanterie Regiment Nr.6 "von Brettenfeld"

With yellow coats faced "Zitron" IR.6 is probably the brightest in the army.  Led by the now aged Nikolaus von Brettenfeld.  A gentleman adventurer with a past as colourful as his Regiment's facings.

Although originally regarded as an ill-disciplined formation, von Brettenfled has worked tirelessly to mould his men into a hard fighting and reliable Regiment.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Red and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Nikolaus, Freiherr von Brettenfeld

Infanterie Regiment Nr.5 "Conte di Poretto"

This Regiment is led by the colourful Italian "Pietro di Poretto".  Although known as a pristinely attired and well mannered Gentleman at Court,  he is a merciless foe on the field of battle.  Infamous for his inclination toward granting the enemy "no quarter", he is nevertheless an inspirational leader.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Red and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Pietro, Conte di Poretto

Infanterie Regiment Nr.4 "von Wertheim"

The somewhat delicate nickname "die Rosen" should not be taken as a criticism of this Regiment's martial prowess. 

Originally from the Markgrafschaft of Baden, Helmuth von Wertheim has come to be highly regarded for his loyalty to the Reichsfürstentum.   Serving with distinction against a multitude of enemies, he has earned the respect of his men.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Red and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Helmuth, Freiherr von Wertheim

Infanterie Regiment Nr.3 "von Frauenberg"

The first of the "regular" line infantry is the "Dunkelblau" Regiment, "von Frauenberg".  With sixteen companies of musketeers and two companies of grenadiers (many of whom are Magyars) the formation remains a powerful fighting force.

Raised shortly after IR.2 the Regiment has been led by the formidable Ludwig von Frauenberg for nearly 20 years.  A major land-owner in the Eastern portion of the State he is a Nobleman of the old style.  Von Frauenberg is a close friend of Hubertus II, having first met on campaign against the Turks nearly forty years ago.
The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Red and White cap bag.

Inhaber: Ludwig, Freiherr von Frauenberg

Infanterie Regiment Nr.2 "Markgräfin"

The second Regiment dates from the inital formation of the standing army.  Named in honour of the wife of Markgraf Otto von Löwensee (1573-1635)  the ruler during much of the "Thirty Years War". 
It is distinguished from the other Regiments by the unique black waiscoat (originally adopted as a sign of mourning following the untimely death of the Markgräfin) and double complement of Grenadiers.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Silver" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Black and Scarlet cap bag.

Inhaber: Albrecht, Reichsgraf von Michelbach

Infanterie Regiment Nr.1 "Kronprinz"

One of the two senior Regiments, "Kronprinz" is, as one would expect, led by the eldest son of the incumbent ruler.

It is distinguished from the other Regiments by the charcoal grey coat and scarlet waiscoat.   In addition, the Regiment has double the usual compliment of Grenadiers, four companies in total.

The Regimental details are thus:

Officers wear metallic "Gold" lace and buttons.
Grenadiers have a Scarlet and Yellow cap bag.

Inhaber: Maximilian, Kronprinz von Löwensee

Monday, 18 October 2010

The Army of Hubertus II - Infantry Regiments 1720

At present, Reichsfürst Hubertus II has nine Regiments of Line Infantry at his disposal.   The standard uniform is a dark mustard yellow coat (Charcoal Grey for Regiment Nr.1 "Kronprinz")  cream waistcoat and faun leggings.  The black tricorn hat displays a red cockade or bow.  Individual Regiments are distinguished by their facing colours, buttons and lace.  The precise "cut" of the coat varies widely but the distinctions remain constant.

These facings are chosen by the "Inhaber" (Colonel) when he first takes control of the Regiment.   As a Gentleman, he is expected to pay for any clothing changes from his own purse.

Standard Infantry Regiments comprise four battalions of Musketeers (each of 4 companies) and two companies of Grenadiers.  Both senior Regiments, "Kronprinz" and "Markgräfin Katharina" boast a double complement of Grenadiers.  The majority of Grenadiers wear an "Austrian" style fur cap with coloured bag.  As is usual, each Regiment has an integral Artillery component.  These technical personnel wear a "Tobacco Brown" uniform with the Regimental distinctions.

It is normal practice to identify the Regiments by the name of their Inhaber rather than a number.  However the systems are often used in parallel.

In time of war, Beimbach-Schönau can raise numerous irregular units from it's non-Germanic subjects.   Amongst these are the often villainous "Pandour" formations, both infantry and cavalry, who operate outside the bounds of civilised warfare.

Friday, 15 October 2010

The Turkoman Menace Returns?

Merchants report that to the distant South-West the Turk is amassing a large army with designs upon Christendom!

The rumours have yet to be confirmed but we fear for the safety of our children and tender womenfolk should such an invasion succeed.

The ever bellicose Sultan Ahmed appears eager to avenge his recent defeat near Beograd (1717) at which our armed forces and present Sovereign played such an active part.

Envoys have been sent to Constantinople in an attempt to clarify the position and, if possible, avert war.

However should our initiatives fail, we thank the Almighty that we are led by Princes so well versed in combat against the Mohammadens!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

St Hubertus Day Review

Shortly, our gracious ruler Reichsfürst Hubertus II will be enjoying the annual army review.  As usual this will be held on his Saint's day (November 3rd).

This year, pride of place will be given to the newly reorganised Cavalry arm - especially the Kürassiere of the "Leibgarde".

Sporting a splendid and (dare we say it) unique new uniform designed by his Highness, the troopers of the Household are expected to be most popular with the spectators.

For those unable to attend in person, full details of this most joyous occasion will be posted.

Friday, 8 October 2010

A Brief History

Like so much in Central Europe. the origins of the State are complex.

Since at least the Dark Ages there has been a lakeside settlement on the site.  The founder of Bad Löwensee was a Knight named Ulrich the Pious  (1053-1128).  At the end of what had been a somewhat disappointing foray into the Pagan lands, he claimed a mystical Lion "promised" him the territory in a vision.  Ulrich followed the "instructions" he had been given and the town fell to his retinue. Ulrich adopted the feline prophet as his badge and to this day the Coat-of-Arms proudly displays the legendary "Lion of Ulrich".

By the early Middle Ages, the settlement  had become an Imperial Free City, reknowned for both it's hot springs and the supposed "miracle".  Due to it's convenient location astride the pilrgimage route to Outremer, the city received many visitors and a good deal of revenue. 

Through aggressive means and dynastic marriages, the now renamed von Löwensee family came quickly to control the surrounding area including the commercial centre of Schönau and the heavily fortified outpost at Beimbach.   When granted the title of Markgraf,  (1223) Otto von Löwensee decided to recognise the importance of these towns in his choice of a new name for the Markgrafschaft.  In addition, he added three Suns to his standard, representing his domain's three main cities.  

Due to it's location on the fringes of the Holy Roman Empire and the decline in Pilgrimage traffic, Beimbach-Schönau was spared much of the devastation caused by the Black Death (1348-50).  Once the plague had passed, this left the area in an advantageous position in relation to other, more severely depopulated, States.  Many physicians attributed  the low mortality rate to the "miraculous" waters of the Löwensee.

The illustration shows Bad Löwensee in the mid-15th Century.  This flourishing town was severely damaged by marauding troops during "Thirty Years War" (1618-48).  Although a tragedy, the sack of the capital has enabled the Nobility to consolidate it's power by urging subjects to unite against the "Protestant Menace" beyond the borders.

The rebuilt town remains the ceremonial and cultural heart of the Markgraf's territory.  Perched atop a rocky outcrop overlooking the town, the imposing "Schloss Löwenstein" is the official residence of the Markgraf.  However, the main military and commercial functions have now been assumed by the larger cities of Beimbach and Schönau.

The Economy is tightly controlled by the Markgraf and is predominantly agrarian.   Fine glassware is produced in the Bad Löwensee area.  Schönau is famed for it's textiles and fine wines which some say rival "Tokaj" in terms of quality.   Beimbach is the major garrison city and has the workshops and artisans essential to support a modern military.

Beimbach-Schönau has an ethnically varied population comprising a German majority with sizable Czech and Magyar communities.  In addition there exists a large body of serfs working the Estates of the gentry. The official religion is Roman Catholicism and other Faiths are aggressively discouraged by the Nobility.  Politically the State is closely bound to the Emperor in Wien.

Currently enjoying an uneasy peace with it's Protestant and Slavic neighbours, The now Reichsfürstentum of Beimbach-Schönau quietly arms for the inevitable conflict between the Empire and it's many enemies.