Luis Firmín de Carvajal, Conde de la Unión

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Luis Fermín de Carvajal, Conde de la Union
Born 1752 (1752)
Lima, modern-day Peru
Died20 November 1794 (1794-11-21) (aged 42)
Pont de Molins, Catalonia, Spain
Allegiance Flag of Spain (1785-1873 and 1875-1931).svg Spain
Rank Lieutenant General
Battles/wars

French Revolutionary Wars

Luis Fermín de Carvajal, Conde de la Unión (1752 – 20 November 1794) became a general officer in the army of the Kingdom of Spain. In 1794 during the French Revolutionary Wars, he commanded the Spanish Army in a mostly unsuccessful effort to hold back the army of the First French Republic. He died in battle fighting the French.

A General Officer is an officer of high rank in the army, and in some nations' air forces or marines.

French Revolutionary Wars series of conflicts fought between the French Republic and several European monarchies from 1792 to 1802

The French Revolutionary Wars were a series of sweeping military conflicts lasting from 1792 until 1802 and resulting from the French Revolution. They pitted France against Great Britain, Austria and several other monarchies. They are divided in two periods: the War of the First Coalition (1792–97) and the War of the Second Coalition (1798–1802). Initially confined to Europe, the fighting gradually assumed a global dimension. After a decade of constant warfare and aggressive diplomacy, France had conquered a wide array of territories, from the Italian Peninsula and the Low Countries in Europe to the Louisiana Territory in North America. French success in these conflicts ensured the spread of revolutionary principles over much of Europe.

Spanish Army land warfare branch of Spains military forces

The Spanish Army is the terrestrial army of the Spanish Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is one of the oldest active armies — dating back to the late 15th century.

Contents

Early career and 1793

Luis Fermín De Carvajal was born in 1752 in Lima. King Charles III of Spain conferred upon him the title Conde de la Unión on 2 August 1778. At the outbreak of the War of the Pyrenees in 1793, he commanded the fortress of San Fernando at Figueres. [1] Under the command of Antonio Ricardos the Spanish army was generally successful in 1793, capturing and holding part of French Rousillon. As a Lieutenant General, De la Unión led a division under Ricardos in a victory at the Battle of Truillas on 22 September 1793. [2] When Ricardos died in Madrid in early 1794, and his successor Alejandro O'Reilly expired soon after, King Charles IV of Spain appointed de la Unión to command the army.

Lima Capital city in Peru

Lima is the capital and the largest city of Peru. It is located in the valleys of the Chillón, Rímac and Lurín rivers, in the central coastal part of the country, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Together with the seaport of Callao, it forms a contiguous urban area known as the Lima Metropolitan Area. With a population of more than 9 million, Lima is the most populous metropolitan area of Peru and the third-largest city in the Americas, behind São Paulo and Mexico City.

Charles III of Spain King of Spain and the Spanish Indies from 1759 to 1788

Charles III was King of Spain (1759–1788), after ruling Naples as Charles VII and Sicily as Charles V (1734–1759). He was the fifth son of Philip V of Spain, and the eldest son of Philip's second wife, Elisabeth Farnese. A proponent of enlightened absolutism, he succeeded to the Spanish throne on 10 August 1759, upon the death of his half-brother Ferdinand VI, who left no heirs.

War of the Pyrenees conflict

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.

In command

In April 1794, the newly organized and reinforced French Army of the eastern Pyrenees under Jacques François Dugommier launched a powerful offensive against the Spanish foothold in France. On 30 April and 1 May, the French defeated de la Unión at the Battle of Boulou, forcing the Spanish army south of the Pyrenees. [3] The French recaptured the port of Collioure at the end of May, [4] and blockaded the Spanish garrison of the Fort de Bellegarde at the Pass of Le Perthus. De la Unión made two attempts to break through the blockade. The first try was repulsed at La Junquera on 7 June. [5] The second attempt ended in failure at the Battle of San Lorenzo de la Muga on 13 August [6] and Bellegarde fell on 17 September. [7]

Jacques François Dugommier French general

Jacques François Coquille named Dugommier was a French general.

Collioure Commune in Occitanie, France

Collioure is a commune in the southern French department of Pyrénées-Orientales.

Fort de Bellegarde

The Fort de Bellegarde is a 17th-century bastion fortification located above the town of Le Perthus, in the Pyrénées-Orientales département of southern France.

View south from the Fort de Bellegarde past the Panissars blockhouse. La Junquera is at the left center and Black Mountain (Mont Roig) is on the center horizon. Vista Panissars.jpg
View south from the Fort de Bellegarde past the Panissars blockhouse. La Junquera is at the left center and Black Mountain (Mont Roig) is on the center horizon.

De la Unión built a chain of 90 redoubts running from Sant Llorenç de la Muga to the coast. The lines were designed to protect the Alt Emporda from French invasion, but were manned by troops of uneven quality. The best units were the Spanish Guard and Walloon Guard, with three battalions each. Regular line infantry and provincial militia also manned the defenses.

Sant Llorenç de la Muga Municipality in Catalonia, Spain

Sant Llorenç de la Muga is a municipality in the Alt Empordà comarca, in the Province of Girona, Catalonia, Spain with an area of 32.06 km² and a population of 177 people.

Walloons French-speaking people who live in Belgium, principally in Wallonia

Walloons are a Romance ethnic group native to Belgium, principally its southern region of Wallonia, who speak French and Walloon. Walloons are a distinctive ethnic community within Belgium. Important historical and anthropological criteria bind Walloons to the French people.

Militia generally refers to an army or other fighting force that is composed of non-professional fighters

A militia is generally an army or some other fighting organization of non-professional soldiers, citizens of a nation, or subjects of a state, who can be called upon for military service during a time of need, as opposed to a professional force of regular, full-time military personnel, or historically, members of a warrior nobility class. Generally unable to hold ground against regular forces, it is common for militias to be used for aiding regular troops by skirmishing, holding fortifications, or irregular warfare, instead of being used in offensive campaigns by themselves. Militia are often limited by local civilian laws to serve only in their home region, and to serve only for a limited time; this further reduces their use in long military campaigns.

The French blow fell in the early hours of 17 November and the Battle of the Black Mountain ensued. On the first day, the French gained ground on the western flank, but were repulsed in the center and on the eastern flank. A Spanish artillery shell killed Dugommier on the 18th and his successor Dominique Catherine de Pérignon ordered a temporary halt in the fighting. On 20 November, Pérignon resumed the attack and the French rapidly broke through the first and second Spanish lines. The French assaulted the 25-gun Notre-Dame-del-Roure redoubt for three hours, finally seizing the key position at 3:00 PM. [1] [8] Arriving at Pont de Molins, de la Unión led a counterattack by 1,300 cavalry against two brigades of French infantry. During the subsequent struggle, he fell, fatally hit by two bullets. [9]

Battle of the Black Mountain

The Battle of the Black Mountain was fought from 17 to 20 November 1794 between the army of the First French Republic and the allied armies of the Kingdom of Spain and the Kingdom of Portugal. The French, led by Jacques François Dugommier defeated the Allies, who were commanded by Luis Firmín de Carvajal, Conde de la Unión. Though the Spanish right wing held, its left flank was driven back on the first day's fighting. On the last day of the battle, the French overran a key position and put the Spanish army to rout. The battle was remarkable in that both army commanders were slain. A Spanish artillery shell killed Dugommier early in the battle and Dominique Catherine de Pérignon assumed command of the French army. De la Union was shot dead while leading a cavalry charge on the last day of the fighting and was temporarily replaced by Jerónimo Girón-Moctezuma, Marquis de las Amarilas. The French victory led to the capture of Figueres and the Siege of Roses (Rosas), a port in Catalonia.

Pont de Molins Municipality in Catalonia, Spain

Pont de Molins is a municipality in the comarca of Alt Empordà, Girona, Catalonia, Spain. The ruins of the Monastery of Santa María del Roure are to the northwest.

The battle ended in a rout of the Spanish army. The French inflicted 10,000 casualties on the Spanish, while suffering only 3,000 losses. [10] Jerónimo Girón-Moctezuma, Marquis de las Amarillas succeeded to the army command and retreated south of the Rio Fluvià where he was unable to save the fortress of San Fernando from capture. Girón was soon replaced in command by José de Urrutia y de las Casas. Pérignon and Pierre Sauret successfully concluded the Siege of Roses in early February. [11] The Peace of Basel ended the conflict in July 1795.

Jerónimo Morejón Girón-Moctezuma, 3rd Marquis de las Amarillas, born 7 June 1741 at Málaga and died 17 October 1819 at Seville, became a general officer in the army of the Kingdom of Spain and commanded division-sized combat units during the War of the Pyrenees in 1793 and 1794. Though he attained high rank, he displayed limited military talent. Shortly after succeeding to the top command of the Army of Catalonia, he was dismissed for blunders made on the battlefield.

Fluvià river in Catalonia in Spain

The Fluvià is a river in Catalonia. It rises in the Serralada Transversal, passes through Olot, and flows into the Mediterranean Sea near Sant Pere Pescador. The ancient city of Empúries was founded near the mouth of the Fluvià, when it was 6 km south of its present location.

José de Urrutia y de las Casas Spanish general

José Ramón de Urrutia y de las Casas was a Spanish captain general and military engineer.

Footnotes

  1. 1 2 Catalan Wikipedia, Luis Fermín de Carvajal, Conde de la Unión
  2. Smith, p 57
  3. Smith, p 77
  4. Smith, p 81
  5. Ostermann-Chandler, p 407
  6. Smith, p 88
  7. Smith, p 91
  8. Ostermann-Chandler, p 408
  9. Prats, Del Roure
  10. Smith, p 96
  11. Ostermann-Chandler, pp 413-414

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