Bon-Adrien Jeannot de Moncey (or Jannot de Moncey), 1st Duke of Conegliano , 1st Baron of Conegliano, Peer of France (31 July 1754 – 20 April 1842), was a prominent soldier in the French Revolutionary Wars and a Marshal of the Empire during the Napoleonic Wars. He later became governor of the Hôtel des Invalides. MONCEY is one of the names inscribed under the Arc de Triomphe, on Column 33.
Moncey was born on 31 July 1754 in Palise or Moncey, Doubs. His father was a lawyer from Besançon. During his childhood, he twice enlisted in the French Army, but his father procured his discharge on both occasions. His desire was at last gratified in 1778, when he received a commission. He was a captain when, in 1791, he embraced the principles of the French Revolution. Moncey won great distinction in the campaigns of 1793 and 1794 during the War of the Pyrenees, rising from the commander of a battalion to the commander-in-chief of the Army of the Western Pyrenees in a few months, and his successful operations were instrumental in compelling the Spanish government to make peace. After this, he was employed in the highest commands until 1799, when the government, suspecting him of being a royalist, dismissed him.
The coup d'état of 18 Brumaire in 1799 brought Moncey back to the active list, and during Napoleon's Italian campaign of 1800, he led a corps from Switzerland into Italy, surmounting all the difficulties of bringing horses and guns over the then formidable Gotthard Pass. In 1801, Napoleon made him inspector-general of the French Gendarmerie, and on the assumption of the imperial title, made him a Marshal of the Empire. In 1805, Moncey received the Grand Cordon of the Legion of Honour.
In July 1808, Moncey was made Duke of Conegliano; it was a duché grand-fief , a rare hereditary honor. The title was later confirmed under the Bourbon Restoration, and, since he had no surviving son, Moncey was granted permission to pass it to his son-in-law (with his newly granted title of Baron of Conegliano and Peer of France).
The same year, the first of the Peninsular War, Moncey was sent to Spain in command of an army corps. He distinguished himself by his victorious advance on Valencia, but the effect of that was destroyed by General Pierre Dupont's defeat at the Battle of Bailén. Moncey then took a leading part in the emperor's campaign on the Ebro and in the Second Siege of Saragossa in 1809.
He refused to serve in the invasion of Russia, and therefore had no share in the campaign of the Grande Armée in 1812 and 1813. However, when France was invaded in 1814, Moncey reappeared in the field and fought the last battle for Paris on the heights of Montmartre and at the barrier of Clichy.
In 1814, he supported Louis XVIII and was made a Peer of France as Baron of Conegliano (confirmed in 1825). He remained neutral during Napoleon's return to power, feeling himself bound to Louis XVIII by his engagements as a Peer of France, but after Waterloo he was punished for refusing to take part in the court martial of Marshal Michel Ney by imprisonment and the loss of his marshalate and peerage.
In 1816, Moncey was given back his title of marshal by the king and he re-entered the Chamber of Peers three years later. He continued his military career as his last active service was as commander of an army corps in the short war with Spain in 1823. From 1833 to 1842, Moncey became governor of the prestigious Hôtel des Invalides (a home for veterans in Paris). Present at the return of Napoleon's remains in December 1840, he said after the ceremony, "Now, let's go home to die".
He married Charlotte Prospère Remillet (1761–1842), by whom he had 3 children:
Charles Pierre François Augereau, 1st Duke of Castiglione was a French military commander and a Marshal of the Empire who served during the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. After serving in the Revolutionary Wars, he earned rapid promotion while fighting against Spain and soon found himself as a division commander under Napoleon Bonaparte in Italy. He fought in all of Bonaparte's battles of 1796 with great distinction. During the Napoleonic Wars, Napoleon entrusted Augereau with important commands. His life ended under a cloud because of his poor timing in switching sides between Napoleon and King Louis XVIII of France. Napoleon wrote of Augereau that he "has plenty of character, courage, firmness, activity; is inured to war; is well liked by the soldiery; is fortunate in his operations."
Jean-Baptiste Bessières, 1st Duke of Istria was a French military commander and Marshal of the Empire who served during both the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. His younger brother, Bertrand, followed in his footsteps and eventually became a divisional general. Their cousin, Géraud-Pierre-Henri-Julien, also served Emperor Napoleon I as a diplomat and imperial official.
Louis-Nicolas d'Avout, better known as Davout, 1st Duke of Auerstaedt, 1st Prince of Eckmühl, was a French military commander and Marshal of the Empire who served during both the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. His talent for war along with his reputation as a stern disciplinarian earned him the nickname "The Iron Marshal". He is ranked along with Marshals André Masséna and Jean Lannes as one of Napoleon's finest commanders. His loyalty and obedience to Napoleon were absolute. During his lifetime, Davout's name was commonly spelled Davoust, which is how it appears on the Arc de Triomphe and in much of the correspondence between Napoleon and his generals.
Auguste Frédéric Louis Viesse de Marmont was a French general and nobleman who rose to the rank of Marshal of the Empire and was awarded the title Duke of Ragusa. In the Peninsular War Marmont succeeded the disgraced Andre Masséna in the command of the French army in northern Spain, but lost decisively at the Battle of Salamanca.
Louis-Alexandre Berthier, 1st Prince of Wagram, Sovereign Prince of Neuchâtel, was a Marshal of the Empire doubling as Minister of War and chief of staff to Napoleon. Born into a military family, he served in the French Army and survived suspicion of monarchism during the Reign of Terror, before a rapid rise in the ranks during the French Revolutionary Wars. Although a key supporter of the coup against the Directory that gave Napoleon supreme power, and present for his greatest victories, Berthier strongly opposed the progressive stretching of lines of communication during the Russian campaign. Allowed to retire by the restored Bourbon regime, he died of unnatural causes shortly before the Battle of Waterloo. Berthier's reputation as a superb operational organiser remains strong among current historians.
The War of the Pyrenees, also known as War of Roussillon or War of the Convention, was the Pyrenean front of the First Coalition's war against the First French Republic. It pitted Revolutionary France against the kingdoms of Spain and Portugal from March 1793 to July 1795 during the French Revolutionary Wars.
Marshal Rémi Joseph Isidore Exelmans, 1st Comte Exelmans was a distinguished French soldier of the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, as well as a political figure of the following period.
The III Corps of the Grande Armée was a French military unit that existed during the Napoleonic Wars. The corps came to prominence between 1805 and 1809 under the command of Marshal Louis-Nicolas Davout, when it repeatedly scored impressive victories single-handedly or in conjunction with other French forces. Napoleon called it "My tenth legion", in reference to Julius Caesar's finest unit, the X Equestris. Troops from III Corps then took part in many battles in Poland (1807) e.g. Czarnowo, Pultusk, Golymin, Eylau, in Bavaria at Teugen-Hausen and Eckmuhl, and in Austria at Wagram in 1809. These troops were later reorganized as the I Corps and included French, German, and Polish units. It also included the 127th to 129th "régiment d'infanterie de ligne" from the North German countries of Oldenburg, Bremen, and Hamburg that were annexed shortly before and thus counted as French.
Marshal of the Empire was a civil dignity during the First French Empire. It was created by Sénatus-consulte on 18 May 1804 and to a large extent resurrected the formerly abolished title of Marshal of France. According to the Sénatus-consulte, a Marshal was a grand officer of the Empire, entitled to a high-standing position at the Court and to the presidency of an electoral college.
Jean Isidore Harispe, 1st Comte Harispe was a distinguished French soldier of the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, as well as of the following period. Harispe was created a Marshal of France in 1851.
The Army of the Western Pyrenees was one of the Republican French armies of the French Revolutionary Wars. From April 1793 until 12 October 1795, the army fought in the Basque Country and in Navarre during the War of the Pyrenees. After indecisive fighting during the first year of its existence, the army seized the Spanish port of San Sebastián in August 1794. By the time the Peace of Basel was signed on 22 July 1795, the Army of the Western Pyrenees held a significant portion of northeastern Spain.
Étienne Tardif de Pommeroux, comte de Bordesoulle was a French nobleman and soldier, who fought in the Napoleonic Wars and the Spanish expedition.
The Hundred Thousand Sons of Saint Louis was the popular name for a French army mobilized in 1823 by the Bourbon King of France, Louis XVIII, to help the Spanish Royalists restore King Ferdinand VII of Spain to the absolute power of which he had been deprived during the Liberal Triennium. Despite the name, the actual number of troops was around 60,000. The force comprised some five army corps and was led by the Duke of Angoulême, the son of the future King Charles X of France. The French name of the conflict is l'Expédition d'Espagne.
The Battle of the Baztan Valley was fought between 23 July and 1 August 1794 during the French Revolutionary War, between a French force from the Army of the Western Pyrenees commanded by Bon-Adrien Jeannot de Moncey and the Spanish forces led by Don Ventura Caro. The French army drove the Spanish from their defenses, then followed the valley northward to the Atlantic coast. The Spanish forces holding the coastal defenses were compelled to surrender or flee.
The Battle of Orbaizeta was fought from 15 to 17 October 1794 during the War of the Pyrenees, between the French Army of the western Pyrenees led by Bon-Adrien Jeannot de Moncey and Spanish forces under the command of Pedro Téllez-Girón, 9th Duke of Osuna. Part of the wider French Revolutionary Wars, this engagement was fought over a wide area to the northwest and northeast of Pamplona in Navarre and ended in a French victory. The Spanish defenders gave up territory to the north of Pamplona, including a number of strategic locations.
Antoine Digonet commanded a French brigade during the French Revolutionary Wars and Napoleonic Wars. He joined the French Royal Army and fought in the American Revolutionary War as a foot soldier. In 1792 he was appointed officer of a volunteer battalion. He fought the Spanish in the War of the Pyrenees and was promoted to general officer. Later he was transferred to fight French royalists in the War in the Vendée. In 1800 he was assigned to the Army of the Rhine and led a brigade at Stockach, Messkirch and Biberach. Shortly after, he was transferred to Italy. In 1805 he fought under André Masséna at Caldiero. He participated in the 1806 Invasion of Naples and led his troops against the British at Maida where his brigade put up a sturdy resistance. After briefly serving in the 1809 war, he took command of Modena and died there of illness in 1811. He never married.
The Battle of Sans Culottes Camp saw a Spanish Royal army commanded by José de Urrutia y de las Casas attack part of the Republican French Army of the Western Pyrenees under Jean-Henri-Guy-Nicolas de Frégeville. The Spanish assault seized two key positions behind the Bidasoa River but was unable to overrun the main position, called Sans Culottes Camp after an eight-hour contest. The War of the Pyrenees action was fought at a location described as being "in front" of Saint-Jean-de-Luz near the modern border between Spain and France.
Jacques Léonard Muller commanded the Army of the Western Pyrenees and the Army of the Rhine during the French Revolutionary Wars. He was a product of the French Royal Army which he joined in 1765. He became a captain in 1791 and soon formed a unit from the disbanded Swiss regiments of the old army. He fought at Jemappes and then transferred to the War Office. Promoted to general officer in July 1793 he was appointed chief of staff to the Army of the Pyrenees. In October 1793 he assumed command of that army despite being outranked by ten other generals. He immediately set about providing a good organization for his motley host. A major Spanish attack on the Sans Culottes Camp was repulsed in February 1794.
The Governor of Les Invalides is a French military personality and figure, named by the French Government to direct the institution of the Hôtel des Invalides of Paris.
Jacques Léonard Muller
| Commander-in-chief of the Army of the Western Pyrenees |
1 September 1794–12 October 1795
| Interim Commander-in-chief of the Army of Italy |
8 March–19 June 1801