Battle of Biberach (1796)

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Coordinates: 48°06″N9°48″E / 48.00167°N 9.01333°E / 48.00167; 9.01333

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Battle of Biberach (1796)
Part of the French Revolutionary Wars
Ringschnait.JPG
Looking south toward the distant Alps from Ringschnait, a village near Biberach an der Riss
Date2 October 1796
Location
Result French victory
Belligerents
Flag of France.svg France Banner of the Holy Roman Emperor (after 1400).svg Habsburg Austria
Commanders and leaders
Flag of France.svg Jean Moreau Banner of the Holy Roman Emperor (after 1400).svg Count Latour
Strength
35,000 15,000
Casualties and losses
500 4,300, 18 guns, 2 colors

The Battle of Biberach was fought on 2 October 1796 between a First French Republic army led by Jean Victor Marie Moreau and a Habsburg Austrian army led by Maximilian Anton Karl, Count Baillet de Latour. The French army paused in its retreat toward the Rhine River to savage the pursuing Austrians. The action occurred during the War of the First Coalition, part of the French Revolutionary Wars. Biberach an der Riss is located 35 kilometres (22 mi) southwest of Ulm.

Jean Victor Marie Moreau Marshal of France

Jean Victor Marie Moreau was a French general who helped Napoleon Bonaparte to power, but later became a rival and was banished to the United States.

Habsburg Monarchy former Central European empire (1526–1804)

The Habsburg Monarchy, also called the Austrian Monarchy or Danubian Monarchy, is an unofficial umbrella term among historians for the kingdoms and countries in personal union with the Habsburg Archduchy of Austria between 1526 and 1804, when it was succeeded by the Austrian Empire. The Monarchy was a composite state of territories within and outside the Holy Roman Empire, and was united only in the person of the monarch. The dynastic capital was Vienna, except from 1583 to 1611, when it was moved to Prague. From 1804 to 1867 the Habsburg Monarchy was formally unified as the Austrian Empire, and from 1867 to 1918 as the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

Maximilian Anton Karl, Count Baillet de Latour General in Austrian service

Count Maximilian Anton Karl Baillet de Latour was an Austrian general during the French Revolutionary Wars.

During the summer of 1796, the two armies of Jean-Baptiste Jourdan in the north and Moreau in the south advanced into southern Germany. They were opposed by Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen who oversaw two Austrian armies under Latour and Wilhelm von Wartensleben. At the Battle of Amberg on 24 August 1796, Charles and Wartensleben combined to throw superior strength against Jourdan while Moreau was separated from his colleague. After Jourdan was beaten again at the Battle of Würzburg on 3 September, Moreau was forced to abandon southern Bavaria to avoid being cut off from France. As the outnumbered Latour doggedly followed the French retreat, Moreau lashed out at him at Biberach. For a loss of 500 soldiers killed and wounded, Moreau's troops inflicted 300 killed and wounded on their enemies and captured 4,000 prisoners, 18 artillery pieces, and two colors. After the engagement, Latour followed the French at a more respectful distance. The next action was the Battle of Emmendingen on 19 October.

Jean-Baptiste Jourdan Marshal of France

Jean-Baptiste Jourdan, 1st Comte Jourdan, enlisted as a private in the French royal army and rose to command armies during the French Revolutionary Wars. Emperor Napoleon I of France named him a Marshal of France in 1804 and he also fought in the Napoleonic Wars. After 1815, he became reconciled to the Bourbon Restoration. He was one of the most successful commanders of the French Revolutionary Army.

Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen Archduke of Austria

Archduke Charles Louis John Joseph Laurentius of Austria, Duke of Teschen was an Austrian field-marshal, the third son of Emperor Leopold II and his wife, Maria Luisa of Spain. He was also the younger brother of Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor. Despite being epileptic, Charles achieved respect both as a commander and as a reformer of the Austrian army. He was considered one of Napoleon's more formidable opponents.

Gustav Wilhelm Ludwig Count Wartensleben was a Swedish nobleman active in the Dutch military.

Franzosengrab dedicated to the French soldiers who died in the battle, Totenbuhl, near Bad Schussenried Bad Schussenried-5820.jpg
Franzosengrab dedicated to the French soldiers who died in the battle, Totenbühl, near Bad Schussenried

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References

Digby Smith is a British military historian. The son of a British career soldier, he was born in Hampshire, England, but spent several years in India and Pakistan as a child and youth. As a "boy soldier," he entered training in the British Army at the age of 16. He was later commissioned in the Royal Corps of Signals, and held several postings with the British Army of the Rhine.

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