|Battle of Amsteg|
Amsteg and the Reuss River
|Commanders and leaders|
|Casualties and losses|
| Battle: 500|
| Battle: 2,300, 3–12 guns|
Campaign: 7,500, 12 guns
The Battle of Amsteg (14–16 August 1799)saw a Republican French division under General of Division Claude Lecourbe face a brigade of Habsburg Austrian soldiers led by General-major Joseph Anton von Simbschen. Lecourbe's offensive began on 14 August when six columns of French infantry advanced on the upper Reuss valley from the north and east. By 16 August, Lecourbe's forces had driven Simbschen's Austrians from the valley and seized control of the strategic Gotthard Pass between Italy and Switzerland.
Claude Jacques Lecourbe, born in Besançon, was a French general during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars.
Joseph Anton von Simbschen served in the Austrian army during the War of the First Coalition as a staff officer in Italy. He rose in rank to general officer and fought at Loano, Limburg, and Neuwied. During the War of the Second Coalition in 1799 he led the Austrian forces at Amsteg in Switzerland and later earned promotion to Feldmarschall-Leutnant. He led a division during the German campaign in 1800. His actions at Caldiero in 1805 earned him the Order of Maria Theresa. Simbschen was seen as a braggart and loudmouth, qualities which earned him many enemies. When his friend Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen resigned from the army in 1809, Simbschen's enemies pounced; he was court-martialed, cashiered, and sentenced to house arrest in 1813. The Aulic War Council imposed a harsher prison sentence in 1815, but in 1818 his military rank and awards were restored.
The Reuss is a river in Switzerland. With a length of 164 kilometres (102 mi) and a drainage basin of 3,426 square kilometres (1,323 sq mi), it is the fourth largest river in Switzerland. The upper Reuss forms the main valley of the canton of Uri. The course of the lower Reuss runs from Lake Lucerne to the confluence with the Aare at Brugg and Windisch.
On 4 June, the First Battle of Zurich was fought between André Masséna's French Army of Helvetia and an Austrian army led by Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen. After the battle, Massena relinquished Zürich and retreated to a strong defensive position to the west of the city. At about the same time, the French commander ordered Lecourbe to abandon the Gotthard Pass and pull back to Lucerne. In August, Masséna had second thoughts and wanted Lecourbe to recapture the Gotthard Pass. The French commander feared an Austro-Russian stroke from Italy across the pass, so he ordered an offensive to occupy the area. Louis Marie Turreau's division advanced northeast from the Canton of Valais in support of Lecourbe. Masséna sent the divisions of Jean-de-Dieu Soult and Joseph Chabran to attack other Austrian positions in order to prevent Archduke Charles from interfering with Lecourbe's main operation. At the end of September 1799, Alexander Suvorov's Russian army had to retake the pass in the Battle of Gotthard Pass.
In the First Battle of Zurich on 4 – 7 June 1799, French general André Masséna was forced to yield the city to the Austrians under Archduke Charles and retreat beyond the Limmat, where he managed to fortify his positions, resulting in a stalemate.
André Masséna, 1st Duke of Rivoli, 1st Prince of Essling was a French military commander during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. He was one of the original eighteen Marshals of the Empire created by Napoleon, with the nickname l'Enfant chéri de la Victoire.
The Army of Helvetia, or, was a unit of the French Revolutionary Army. It was formed on 8 March 1798 from the remnants of the first unit to be known as the Army of the Rhine. It was officially merged into the command structure of the Army of the Danube on 29 April 1799, although it continued to operate in the Swiss theater until 1801. The Army's initial campaigning in the old Swiss Confederation resulted in severe setbacks and defeats at Feldkirch, Lusiensteig, and Zurich.
Lecourbe's Engadine campaign began with a victory on 12 March 1799 at La Punt-Chamues-ch.By 2 May Lecourbe was back at La Punt and on 13 May he arrived at Bellinzona, having completely abandoned the Engadine. At the end of April, a rebellion broke out among the Swiss in the Cantons of Uri, Schwyz, and Unterwalden. Since this insurrection cut his communications with Lecourbe and his right wing, Massena sent Soult to suppress it. Promising clemency, Soult managed to get the rebels in Schwyz to disperse. He acted more vigorously to drive the insurgents out of the upper Reuss valley, by storming their trenches at Flüelen and again at Wassen on 11 May. Soult seized the Teufelsbrücke (Devil's Bridge) in Schöllenen Gorge before the rebels could break it down and overran the insurgent position at the Gotthard Pass. On 15 May, his troops met soldiers of Michel Ney's brigade of Lecourbe's division at Faido on the upper Ticino River.
La Punt - Chamues-ch is a municipality in the Maloja Region in the Swiss canton of Graubünden.
Bellinzona is a municipality, a historic Swiss town, and the capital of the canton of Ticino in Switzerland. The town is famous for its three castles that have been UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 2000.
The Engadin or Engadine is a long high Alpine valley region in the eastern Swiss Alps located in the canton of Graubünden in most southeastern Switzerland with about 25,000 inhabitants. It follows the route of the Inn from its headwaters at Maloja Pass in the southwest running roughly northeast until the Inn flows into Austria, one hundred kilometers downstream. The En/Inn subsequently flows at Passau into the Danube, as the only Swiss river to drain into the Black Sea. The Engadine is protected by high mountain ranges on all sides and is famous for its sunny climate, beautiful landscapes and outdoor activities.
Consolidating his position, Masséna ordered Lecourbe to pull back. On 21 May 1799 he began withdrawing from Bellinzona across the Gotthard Pass. By 24 May, Lecourbe was at Altdorf on the upper Reuss. Promoted to general of division, Ney soon transferred out of Lecourbe's division. On the Allied side, Heinrich von Bellegarde's Austrian corps marched from the upper Rhine valley south via Lake Como to Alessandria which it reached on 8 June.To replace these troops, the Allied commander-in-chief in Italy, Suvorov ordered Karl Joseph Hadik von Futak and 16 battalions to the north and the leading formations began moving across the Gotthard Pass on 27 May. Two days later, Franz Xaver Saint-Julien with 6,300 Austrian soldiers defeated Louis Henri Loison and 3,300 French troops in the Urseren valley. The Austrians inflicted 664 casualties on their foes while losing only 200. On 31 May, Lecourbe with 8,000 troops turned the tables on Saint-Julien at Wassen. On 2 June, Lecourbe drove Saint-Julien back across the Devil's Bridge, which the Austrians broke down. Two battalions of Austrians were cut off and forced to surrender. According to orders, Lecourbe now evacuated the upper Reuss valley and withdrew to Lucerne.
Altdorf is a historic and statistical town and a municipality in the Swiss canton of Uri. It is also the capital of Uri.
Count Heinrich von Bellegarde, Viceroy of Lombardy-Venetia, of a noble Savoyard family, was born in Saxony, joined the Saxon army and later entered Habsburg military service, where he became a general officer during in the Habsburg border wars, the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. He became a Generalfeldmarschall and statesman.
Lake Como, also known as Lario, is a lake of glacial origin in Lombardy, Italy. It has an area of 146 square kilometres (56 sq mi), making it the third-largest lake in Italy, after Lake Garda and Lake Maggiore. At over 400 metres (1,300 ft) deep, it is one of the deepest lakes in Europe, and the bottom of the lake is more than 200 metres (660 ft) below sea level.
On 4 June, Archduke Charles commanding 53,000 Austrians attacked Masséna who led 45,000 French in the First Battle of Zurich. The victorious Austrians suffered heavier losses, 730 killed, 1,470 wounded, and 2,200 captured, while the French lost 500 killed, 800 wounded, and 300 captured.Another authority stated that the Austrians lost 2,000 killed and wounded plus 1,200 captured while the French sustained over 1,200 casualties. On 4 June, the Austrians broke into the French position but were driven out by a ferocious counterattack. However, Masséna conceded defeat by withdrawing from Zürich to a stronger position west of the city on the night of 5 June.
Zürich or Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland and the capital of the canton of Zürich. It is located in north-central Switzerland at the northwestern tip of Lake Zürich. The municipality has approximately 409,000 inhabitants, the urban agglomeration 1.315 million and the Zürich metropolitan area 1.83 million. Zürich is a hub for railways, roads, and air traffic. Both Zurich Airport and railway station are the largest and busiest in the country.
At this time Masséna's Army of Helvetia was arranged as follows. Lecourbe's 1st Division (11,279 men) was on the right flank at Lucerne and Chabran's 2nd Division held the line between Lucerne and the Albis Hills west of Zürich. Soult's 3rd Division (6,986) held the Albis Hills with Jean Thomas Guillaume Lorge's 4th Division (9,040) to its left. Jean Victor Tharreau's 5th Division (9,046) held the line of the Limmat River from Baden to Böttstein. François Goullus' 6th Division (5,753) guarded the line of the Aare River down to the Rhine River and Joseph Souham's 7th Division (10,059) defended the Rhine down to Basel. The 6th and 7th Divisions were directed by Pierre Marie Barthélemy Ferino. The Reserve under Jean Joseph Amable Humbert (4,527) was at Mellingen southwest of Baden and the Cavalry Reserve under Louis Klein was at Geneva and other places in the rear. The Interior Division under Louis-Antoine Choin de Montchoisy (3,170) occupied Bern and the Valais Division under Turreau (7,561) held the Great St Bernard Pass and the Canton of Valais. Masséna's force counted 76,781 troops, but only 59,000 were available for field service. Technically under Massena were the divisions of Claude Juste Alexandre Legrand (6,186) and Claude-Sylvestre Colaud (5,106) guarding the Rhine north of Basel.Earlier, Masséna suggested that Legrand and Colaud be formed into a separate Army of the Rhine but this was not acted on until 2 July 1799.
The Albis is a chain of hills in the Canton of Zürich, Switzerland, stretching for some 19 km from Sihlbrugg in the south to Waldegg near Zürich in the north. The chain forms, among others, the border between the Affoltern and Horgen districts. The best known point is Uetliberg at 870 m, overlooking the city of Zürich. Other points of interest include the Albishorn (909m.) the Bürglen, the Schnabelburg, an observation tower, the Albis Pass, the small town of Buechenegg, and the extensive woods on both sides of the river Sihl. The Sihl Valley borders the Albis chain on its entire east side. On the west side, the Albis is bordered by various streams and one lake, the Türlersee.
Jean Thomas Guillaume Lorge, was a French cavalry commander during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Lorge is one of the names inscribed under the Arc de Triomphe, on Column 6.
Jean Victor Tharreau or Jean Victor Thareau, was a General of Division in the Army of the French Empire.
According to various estimates, Archduke Charles led between 61,000 and 85,000 Austrians. One estimate gave him 54,000 infantry and 18,000 cavalry. Perhaps 20,000 were north and east of the Rhine watching Legrand, Colaud, and Ferino. Gottfried von Strauch's brigade occupied the Gotthard Pass, the Furka Pass to its west, and the Grimsel Pass farther west which leads north into the Aare valley. Karl von Bey's brigade held the upper Reuss valley. Charles established a flotilla on Lake Zurich under the command of James Ernest Williams.Charles told British agent William Wickham that his army could probably drive the French from their positions before Zürich, but it would cost his troops so many casualties that he would be unable to exploit the victory. Charles planned to wait for Alexander Korsakov and his approaching Russian army to join him. During the stalemate, the Austrians grew careless of security, even to the extent of inviting French musicians to play at their dances in Zürich.
Unknown to the French and even to the Austrian and Russian army commanders, Allied strategists were on the verge of making a colossal strategic blunder. In 1799, William Grenville, 1st Baron Grenville was British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs under Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger. Grenville concocted a scheme whereby Korsakov with 45,000 Russians would be joined by Suvorov with 20,000 Russians from Italy. Suvorov would take command of the combined army and drive the French from Switzerland. In the second phase, Suvorov would thrust into Franche-Comté, an area of France weakly defended by frontier fortresses. Meanwhile, Archduke Charles would move north into Germany, leaving 18,000 Austrians under Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze to cooperate with the Russians. Charles and 60,000 troops would strike across the lower Rhine from Germany into France. Far to the north, a joint Anglo-Russian army would invade the Batavian Republic, a satellite of France. The plan was sent on 8 June to Emperor Paul I of Russia, who approved it. Emperor Francis and his foreign minister Johann Amadeus von Thugut endorsed the plan because it came to them via Emperor Paul and it was a good excuse to get Suvorov out of Italy.
On 7 August, when the plan was revealed to Archduke Charles, that general voiced his misgivings about the Russians, "I don't know how they will manage, especially if we take ourselves off any distance". Korsakov was startled when the plan was divulged to him on 12 August. The Russian stated that his army's strength was 28,000 effectives rather than the 45,000 counted on by the armchair strategists. Wickham, who hoped to raise 20,000 pro-Allied Swiss troops, was disappointed that only 2,000 could be recruited.The Army of Condé, made up of 6,000 French Royalists, was marching from Russia and would not arrive in southern Germany until 1 October.
Masséna decided that recapturing the Gotthard Pass would protect his strategic rear and open communications with the French Army of Italy.He probably had no inkling that Suvorov would soon cross the Gotthard Pass, but he knew it was possible that Bellegarde's corps might try it. A thrust north over the pass, then west across the Furka Pass and then north again across the Grimsel Pass would place an Allied force in the upper Aare valley and in a position to hit Masséna's rear. To guard against this eventuality, Masséna ordered Lecourbe to seize this critical terrain. Lecourbe had 10,000 troops and his campaign lasted from 14–16 August 1799.
Lecourbe's division was organized in three brigades under Charles-Étienne Gudin, Jacques Denis Boivin, and Loison. Boivin's brigade consisted of the 1st and 3rd Battalions of the 84th Line Infantry Demi-brigade and three battalions of the 109th Line Demi-brigade. Loison's brigade included two battalions each of the 36th and 38th Line and three battalions of the 76th Line. This source credited Lecourbe with 12,000 troops.Simbschen's brigade counted 4,400 soldiers and was made up of two battalions of the Kerpen Infantry Regiment Nr. 49, the 2nd Battalion of Infantry Regiment Nr. 62, two squadrons of the Modena Dragoon Regiment Nr. 5, and one battalion each of the Neugebauer Infantry Regiment Nr. 46, Gradiskaner Grenz Infantry Regiment Nr. 8, and Deutsch-Banater Grenz Nr. 12.
Lecourbe divided his division into six columns. The first column was his left brigade under Boivin which struck southeast through Steinen and Seewen toward Schwyz and Muotathal.In the Battle of Schwyz on 14 August, the French drove the Austrians from the town. The French lost 28 killed and 140 wounded. They claimed that the Austrians lost 195 killed and 610 wounded, plus 1,000 soldiers and five guns captured. The author found the losses exaggerated. The French sacked the town after the battle. Lecourbe personally accompanied the second column which boated across Lake Lucerne and landed at Flüelen at the head of the upper Reuss valley. Eight grenadier companies conducted this amphibious operation. As Lecourbe advanced south, the flanking columns joined him one by one as they came through the mountain passes from the west.
The third column marched along the western shore of Lake Lucerne through Bauen and the Isenthal, meeting Lecourbe at Seedorf. The fourth column hiked across the Surenen Pass to reach Erstfeld in the Reuss valley. The fifth column marched from Gadmen across the Susten Pass to Wassen. In the face of this advance, Simbschen withdrew south to the Devil's Bridge where he broke the arch and held his ground. Farther to the west, Gudin's right brigade formed the sixth column which moved south up the Aare valley.According to historian Digby Smith, Gudin's 2,400-strong brigade consisted of the 25th Light Infantry Demi-brigade and a Swiss battalion. Though the Austrian position at Grimsel Pass was very strong, the French surprised their adversaries by taking them in flank. Strauch's 2,600 troops were hustled out of their defenses with heavy losses, especially in the Neugebauer Infantry Regiment Nr. 46. Other Austrian units that were engaged were the Deutsch-Banater Nr. 12 and Warasdiner-St. George Nr. 6 Grenz Infantry Regiments, Wallis Infantry Regiment Nr. 11, Siegenfeld Light Infantry Battalion Nr. 10, Carneville Freikorps, and one squadron of the Erdody Hussar Regiment Nr. 9. The French claimed to have killed and wounded 400 men and captured 500 more, while admitting 60 casualties. An Allied source estimated losses at 200 killed and wounded plus 500 captured.
Turreau's division advanced northeast up the Rhône valley, driving elements of Strauch's brigade before it. Turreau met Gudin's troops at the southern outlet of Grimsel Pass. Caught between the two French forces, Strauch's survivors retreated into Italy via the Nufenen Pass. Turreau then took control of the Grimsel Pass.Historian Ramsay Weston Phipps noted that Turreau is often confused with Tharreau in the histories. In fact, command of the Valais Division passed from Charles Antoine Xaintrailles to Tharreau and then to Turreau. In August 1799, Turreau cleared the Austrians from the Simplon Pass. He then defeated the Austrians in the Battle of Oberwald on 13–14 August, inflicting 3,000 casualties on his foes. In September, the Valais Division had two brigades under Jean-Baptiste Jacopin and Henri-Antoine Jardon and included the 28th, 83rd, 89th, and 101st Line Infantry Demi-brigades, the 1st, 4th, and 5th Swiss Battalions, and the 23rd Horse Chasseur Regiment.
With Strauch's brigade driven out of the area, Gudin's brigade turned east and climbed the Furka Pass. When Simbschen found Gudin's sixth column coming up in his rear, he abandoned the Devil's Bridge and retreated west to the lower slopes of the Crispalt.(This is near the Oberalp Pass. ) Gudin and Lecourbe rendezvoused at 7:00 am on 16 August and combined to attack Simbschen. After a bitter fight, Simbschen was driven away to the east toward Disentis in the Vorderrhein valley. The Austrians reported losing 775 killed and wounded plus 526 prisoners and 12 guns. French casualties were about 600. Simbschen subsequently retreated farther east to Chur. The French took possession of the Gotthard Pass, Simplon Pass, and the upper Valais.
Lecourbe's offensive was aided by two diversionary attacks carried out by the divisions of Soult and Chabran. On the morning of 14 August, Soult's right brigade under Édouard Mortier crossed the Sihl River at Adliswil and attacked Wollishofen, a suburb of Zürich. Soult's left brigade under Jean-Baptiste Brunet assaulted Wiedikon, nearly seizing the town gate. Wickham, an eyewitness, claimed that if the French had pressed the attack home, they would have captured the town. Archduke Charles committed reinforcements and the French withdrew when the morning fog lifted. Other witnesses to the skirmish were the French traitors Jean-Charles Pichegru and Amédée Willot who were plotting a Royalist revolt.On 15 August, Chabran attacked the brigade of Franz Jellacic and drove it to the east bank of the Linth River. Charles heard the cannon fire from this encounter and worried whether Jellacic was being overwhelmed. He halted the march of six battalions to the northeast and ordered them back to Zürich. The final result was that Charles was too distracted to help Simbschen defend against Lecourbe.
In the Battle of Amsteg, the French sustained 500 casualties while inflicting 2,300 killed, wounded, and missing on the Austrians and capturing three guns. Counting the related operations, total Austrian losses numbered 7,500 soldiers and 11 guns on 14–16 August. During this period, French casualties were about 1,500. The French fully exploited the Austrians' poor positioning of their troops, causing the disparity in losses.Historian Phipps called Lecourbe's campaign "splendid work". On 17 August, Archduke Charles tried to flank Masséna out of position by bridging the Aare at Döttingen. On this day, the opposing 5th Division was temporarily led by General of Brigade Étienne Heudelet de Bierre. Ney, now commanding the neighboring 6th Division, took charge of the defense and massed 12,000 French soldiers to oppose the crossing. The Austrian military engineers blundered and chose two unsuitable bridging locations. Swiss troops employed by the French sniped continually at the frustrated engineers. By 6:30 pm, the archduke gave up and withdrew his pontoon bridges.
Suvorov and his Austro-Russian army won the Battle of Novi on 15 August 1799.The Russian commander in chief wanted to finish off the defeated French army and clear it from Italy, but the Austrians counseled delay. In response to the loss of the Gotthard Pass, Suvorov sent Paul Kray and 10,000 troops marching north on 18 August. Finally, on 25 August Suvorov received a letter from Emperor Francis that his campaigning in Italy was over and that he was to take his army into Switzerland. Twice, the Russian general begged for a two-month delay, but the Austrian emperor insisted that Suvorov must march immediately. Thugut also demanded that Charles take his army out of Switzerland at once. Ultimately, the Allied strategy failed because of bad timing. Charles left Switzerland too early and Suvorov arrived in Switzerland too late. This left Korsakov and Hotze in a precarious position to face Masséna's French army. Masséna would take full advantage of this mistake in the Second Battle of Zurich on 25–26 September. Meanwhile, Suvorov would have to recapture Gotthard Pass on 24 September.
The Battle of Neresheim saw a victory of Republican French army under Jean Victor Marie Moreau over the Habsburg Austrian army of Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen. Pursued by Moreau's Army of Rhin-et-Moselle, Charles launched an attack against the French. While the Austrian left wing saw some success, the battle degenerated into a stalemate and the archduke withdrew further into the Electorate of Bavaria. Neresheim is located in the state of Baden-Württemberg in Germany a distance of 57 kilometres (35 mi) northeast of Ulm. The action took place during the War of the First Coalition, part of a larger conflict called the French Revolutionary Wars.
The Battle of Novi saw a combined army of Habsburg Austrians and Imperial Russians under Field Marshal Alexander Suvorov attack a Republican French army under General Barthélemy Catherine Joubert. After a prolonged and bloody struggle, the Austro-Russians broke through the French defenses and drove their enemies into a disorderly retreat. Joubert was killed while French division commanders Catherine-Dominique de Pérignon and Emmanuel Grouchy were captured. Novi Ligure is in the province of Piedmont in Italy a distance of 58 kilometres (36 mi) north of Genoa. The battle occurred during the War of the Second Coalition which was part of the French Revolutionary Wars.
The Second Battle of Zurich was a key victory by the Republican French army in Switzerland led by André Masséna over an Austrian and Russian force commanded by Alexander Korsakov near Zürich. It broke the stalemate that had resulted from the First Battle of Zurich three months earlier and led to the withdrawal of Russia from the Second Coalition. Most of the fighting took place on both banks of the river Limmat up to the gates of Zürich, and within the city itself.
The Battle of Caldiero took place on 30 October 1805, pitting the French Armée d'Italie under Marshal André Masséna against an Austrian army under the command of Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen. The French engaged only a part of their forces, around 33,000 men, whilst Archduke Charles engaged the bulk of his army, 49,000 men, leaving out Paul Davidovich's corps to defend the lower Adige and Franz Seraph of Orsini-Rosenberg's corps to cover the Austrian right against any flanking maneuvers. The fighting took place at Caldiero, 15 kilometres east of Verona, in the War of the Third Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars.
The Battle of Abensberg took place on 20 April 1809, between a Franco-German force under the command of Emperor Napoleon I of France and a reinforced Austrian corps led by Feldmarschall-Leutnant Archduke Louis of Austria. As the day wore on, Feldmarschall-Leutnant Johann von Hiller arrived with reinforcements to take command of the three corps that formed the Austrian left wing. The action ended in a complete Franco-German victory. The battlefield was southeast of Abensberg and included clashes at Offenstetten, Biburg-Siegenburg, Rohr in Niederbayern, and Rottenburg an der Laaber. On the same day, the French garrison of Regensburg capitulated.
During the French Revolutionary Wars, the revolutionary armies marched eastward, enveloping Switzerland in their battles against Austria. In 1798, Switzerland was completely overrun by the French and was renamed the Helvetic Republic. The Helvetic Republic encountered severe economic and political problems. In 1798 the country became a battlefield of the Revolutionary Wars, culminating in the Battles of Zürich in 1799.
The Army of the Danube was a field army of the French Directory in the 1799 southwestern campaign in the Upper Danube valley. It was formed on 2 March 1799 by the simple expedient of renaming the Army of Observation, which had been observing Austrian movements on the border between French First Republic and the Holy Roman Empire. It was commanded by General Jean-Baptiste Jourdan, 1st Comte Jourdan (1762–1833).
Friedrich Freiherr (Baron) von Hotze, was a Swiss-born general in the Austrian army during the French Revolutionary Wars, campaigned in the Rhineland during the War of the First Coalition and in Switzerland in the War of the Second Coalition, notably at Battle of Winterthur in late May 1799, and the First Battle of Zurich in early June 1799. He was killed at the Second Battle of Zurich.
The Battle of Winterthur was an important action between elements of the Army of the Danube and elements of the Habsburg army, commanded by Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze, during the War of the Second Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars. The small town of Winterthur lies 18 kilometers (11 mi) northeast of Zürich, in Switzerland. Because of its position at the junction of seven roads, the army that held the town controlled access to most of Switzerland and points crossing the Rhine into southern Germany. Although the forces involved were small, the ability of the Austrians to sustain their 11-hour assault on the French line resulted in the consolidation of three Austrian forces on the plateau north of Zürich, leading to the French defeat a few days later.
The Battle of Ettlingen or Battle of Malsch was fought during the French Revolutionary Wars between the armies of the First French Republic and Habsburg Austria near the town of Malsch, 9 kilometres (6 mi) southwest of Ettlingen. The Austrians under Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen tried to halt the northward advance of Jean Victor Marie Moreau's French Army of Rhin-et-Moselle along the east bank of the Rhine River. After a tough fight, the Austrian commander found that his left flank was turned. He conceded victory to the French and retreated east toward Stuttgart. Ettlingen is located 10 kilometres (6 mi) south of Karlsruhe.
Anne Gilbert de Laval or Anne-Gilbert Laval or Anne Guilbert de La Val became a general officer during the French Revolutionary Wars and led a division in the Napoleonic Wars. Like many other officers, he saw rapid promotion during the French Revolution. He commanded a demi brigade beginning in 1794. He fought in numerous actions during the 1796 campaign in Germany, including the battles of Ettlingen and Neresheim.
The Battle of Verona was fought on 18 October 1805 between the French Army of Italy under the command of André Masséna and an Austrian army led by Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen. By the end of the day, Massena seized a bridgehead on the east bank of the Adige River, driving back the defending troops under Josef Philipp Vukassovich. The action took place near the city of Verona in northern Italy during the War of the Third Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars.
Battle of Oberwald occurred on 13–14 August 1799 between French forces commanded by General of Division Jean Victor Tharreau and elements of Prince Rohan's corps in southern Switzerland. The Austrian regiment was commanded by Colonel Gottfried von Strauch. Both sides engaged approximately 6,000 men. The French lost 500 killed, wounded or missing, and the Austrians lost 3,000 men and two guns. Oberwald is a village in Canton Valais, at the source of the Rhône River, between Grimsel and Furka passes.
The Battle of Mannheim was fought between a Habsburg Austrian army commanded by Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen and a Republican French army under Jacques Léonard Muller. Most of the French Army of the Rhine had retreated to the west bank of the Rhine River, leaving the division of Antoine Laroche Dubouscat to hold Mannheim on the east bank. Despite assistance by Michel Ney, Laroche's division was beaten and driven out of the city when attacked by Charles and a much superior force. The War of the Second Coalition action occurred in the city of Mannheim, located in the state of Baden-Württemberg in southwest Germany about 80 kilometres (50 mi) south of Frankfurt.
The Battle of Feldkirch saw a Republican French corps led by André Masséna attack a weaker Habsburg Austrian force under Franz Jellacic. Defending fortified positions, the Austrians repulsed all of the French columns, though the struggle lasted until nightfall. This and other French setbacks in southern Germany soon caused Masséna to go on the defensive. The War of the Second Coalition combat occurred at the Austrian town of Feldkirch, Vorarlberg, located 158 kilometres (98 mi) west of Innsbruck.
The First Battle of Marengo or Battle of San Giuliano saw Republican French soldiers under General of Division Jean Victor Marie Moreau launch a reconnaissance in force against a larger force of Habsburg Austrian and Imperial Russian troops led by Field Marshal Alexander Suvorov. The French enjoyed initial success, pressing back their opponents. However, large Austrian and Russian reinforcements soon arrived, causing the French to withdraw into Alessandria. This War of the Second Coalition action occurred near the town of Spinetta Marengo, located just east of Alessandria in northwest Italy.
The Battle of Linth River saw a Republican French division under General of Division Jean-de-Dieu Soult face a force of Habsburg Austrian, Imperial Russian, and Swiss soldiers led by Feldmarschall-Leutnant Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze in Switzerland. Soult carefully planned and his troops carried out a successful assault crossing of the Linth River between Lake Zurich and the Walensee. Hotze's death early in the action disorganized the Allied defenders who were defeated and forced to retreat, abandoning supplies accumulated for Field Marshal Alexander Suvorov's approaching army. On the same day, General of Division André Masséna's French Army of Helvetia defeated Lieutenant General Alexander Korsakov's Russian army in the Second Battle of Zurich and a French brigade turned back another Austrian force near Mollis. Both Korsakov's Russians and Hotze's survivors, led by Feldmarschall-Leutnant Franz Petrasch withdrew north of the Rhine River.
The Battle of Gotthard Pass or Battle of St. Gotthard Pass saw an Imperial Russian army commanded by Field Marshal Alexander Suvorov supported by two Habsburg Austrian brigades attack a Republican French division under General of Division Claude Lecourbe. The Austro-Russian army successfully captured the Gotthard Pass after stiff fighting on the first day. Suvorov's main body was assisted by a Russian flanking column led by Lieutenant General Andrei Rosenberg and a smaller Austrian flanking column under General-major Franz Xaver von Auffenberg. The next day, Suvorov's army fought its way north along the upper Reuss River valley past the Teufelsbrücke in Schöllenen Gorge. By 26 September the army reached Altdorf near Lake Lucerne.