Siege of Mainz (1814)

The Siege of Mainz (21 November 1813 – 4 May 1814) saw an Imperial French corps under Charles Antoine Morand besieged in Mainz Fortress by an Imperial Russian corps led by Louis Alexandre Andrault de Langeron. When the Russians left in February 1814, they were replaced by the V German Corps, led by Duke Ernest of Saxe-Coburg and made up of the soldiers from the County of Nassau, the Duchy of Berg and several other minor German states. The French were far too strong for the Allies to directly attack the fortress. However, an outbreak of typhus ravaged city. Despite the epidemic, Morand did not surrender the city until the news of Napoleon's abdication arrived.

Siege of Mainz (1814)
Part of War of the Sixth Coalition
Date21 November 1813–4 May 1814
Location
Result Allied blockade fails
Belligerents
 Russia
County of Nassau
Duchy of Berg
 France
Commanders and leaders
Louis de Langeron
Duke of Saxe-Coburg
Charles Morand
François Étienne Damas
Armand Charles Guilleminot
Jean-Baptiste Pierre de Semellé
Units involved
VIII Infantry Corps
V German Corps

IV Corps

  • 1st Division
  • 13th Division
  • 51st Division
Strength
30,000 31,000
46 guns
Casualties and losses
unknown 19,000 (mostly from disease)

Of the original garrison of 31,000 men, only 12,000 men survived. Most of the deaths were from typhus.

Garrison

At the beginning of January 1814, Morand's IV Corps consisted of the 1st Division led by François Étienne Damas, the 13th Division commanded by Armand Charles Guilleminot and the 51st Division directed by Jean-Baptiste Pierre de Semellé. Damas' division counted 169 officers and 1,748 men in the brigades of Schweitzer and Jean-Baptiste Estève de Latour. Guilleminot's division included 187 officers and 2,438 men in the brigades of Antoine Gruyer, Jean-Marie Vergez and Annet Morio de L'Isle. Semellé's division numbered 246 officers and 3,837 men in the brigades of Antoine Aymard and Henri-Jacques-Martin Lagarde. The artillery reserve was under Albert Louis Valentin Taviel who had charge of six 12-pound cannons, twenty-eight 6-pound cannons and twelve 24-pound howitzers. There were elements of seven cavalry regiments but the main mounted strength was 1,033 men of the 2nd Honor Guards Regiment.[1]

References

  1. Nafziger 2015, pp. 536–537.

Bibliography

  • Leggiere, Michael V. (2007). The Fall of Napoleon: The Allied Invasion of France 1813-1814. 1. New York, N.Y.: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-87542-4.
  • Nafziger, George (2015). The End of Empire: Napoleon's 1814 Campaign. Solihull, UK: Helion & Company. ISBN 978-1-909982-96-3.
  • Petre, F. Loraine (1994) [1914]. Napoleon at Bay: 1814. London: Lionel Leventhal Ltd. ISBN 1-85367-163-0.
  • Smith, Digby (1998). The Napoleonic Wars Data Book. London: Greenhill. ISBN 1-85367-276-9.

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