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The Siege of Philippsburg was conducted by French forces against forces in the fortress of Philippsburg in the Rhine River valley during the War of the Polish Succession. The Duke of Berwick led 100,000 men up the Rhine Valley in opposition to Austrian forces, of which 60,000 were detached to invest the fortress at Philippsburg, beginning on 1 June 1734. A relief column of 35,000 under the aging Prince Eugene of Savoy (accompanied by Crown Prince Frederick of Prussia) was unsuccessful in actually relieving the siege. On 12 June Berwick was killed by a cannonball while inspecting the trenches, and command of the besiegers fell to Marshals d'Asfeld and Noailles. The fortress surrendered one month later, and the garrison withdrew to the fortress of Mainz with the honours of war.
France, officially the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.
Philippsburg is a town in Germany, in the district of Karlsruhe in Baden-Württemberg.
The War of the Polish Succession (1733–35) was a major European war sparked by a Polish civil war over the succession to Augustus II, which the other European powers widened in pursuit of their own national interests. France and Spain, the two Bourbon powers, attempted to check the power of the Austrian Habsburgs in western Europe, as did the Kingdom of Prussia, whilst Saxony and Russia mobilized to support the eventual Polish victor. The slight amount of fighting in Poland resulted in the accession of Augustus III, who in addition to Russia and Saxony, was politically supported by the Habsburgs.
D'Asfeld was promoted to Marshal of France for his role in the campaign; Wuttgenau was promoted to lieutenant general for his spirited defense of the fortress.
On the death of Augustus II on 1 February 1733, the Polish throne was claimed by both his son, Augustus III, and by Stanislas I, father in law of King Louis XV of France. Whilst a body double ostensibly left Brest by sea, Stanislas crossed Germany incognito and arrived at Warsaw on 8 September. On 12 September Stanislas was elected king of Poland by the diet.
Augustus III was King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1734 until 1763, as well as Elector of Saxony in the Holy Roman Empire from 1733 until 1763 where he was known as Frederick Augustus II.
Louis XV, known as Louis the Beloved, was a monarch of the House of Bourbon who ruled as King of France from 1 September 1715 until his death in 1774. He succeeded his great-grandfather Louis XIV at the age of five. Until he reached maturity on 15 February 1723, the kingdom was ruled by Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, as Regent of France. Cardinal Fleury was his chief minister from 1726 until the Cardinal's death in 1743, at which time the young king took sole control of the kingdom.
Brest is a city in the Finistère département in Brittany. Located in a sheltered position not far from the western tip of the peninsula, and the western extremity of metropolitan France, Brest is an important harbour and the second French military port after Toulon. The city is located on the western edge of continental Europe. With 142,722 inhabitants in a 2007 census, Brest is at the centre of Western Brittany's largest metropolitan area, ranking third behind only Nantes and Rennes in the whole of historic Brittany, and the 19th most populous city in France; moreover, Brest provides services to the one million inhabitants of Western Brittany. Although Brest is by far the largest city in Finistère, the préfecture of the department is the much smaller Quimper.
On his election Russia and Austria, both of whom backed Augustus III, invaded Poland. By 22 September Stanislas, who did not have a proper army, had to take refuge in Danzig (now known as Gdańsk), there to await the French help he had been promised. On 5 October, Augustus III was proclaimed king, protected by Russian forces at Warsaw. Great Britain, the Dutch Republic, Sweden, Denmark and the Republic of Venice recognised that Austro-Russian aggression against Poland was the casus belli and pledged to remain neutral. Spain, coveting the Kingdom of Naples and Sardinia, which the Duke of Milan wanted, sided with France.
Gdańsk is a Polish city on the Baltic coast. With a population of 464,254, Gdańsk is the capital and largest city of the Pomeranian Voivodeship and the capital of Kashubia. It is Poland's principal seaport and the centre of the country's fourth-largest metropolitan area.
Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of 209,331 km2 (80,823 sq mi), it is the largest of the British Isles, the largest European island, and the ninth-largest island in the world. In 2011, Great Britain had a population of about 61 million people, making it the world's third-most populous island after Java in Indonesia and Honshu in Japan. The island of Ireland is situated to the west of Great Britain, and together these islands, along with over 1,000 smaller surrounding islands, form the British Isles archipelago.
The Dutch Republic or United Provinces was a republic that existed from the formal creation of a confederacy in 1581 by several Dutch provinces until the Batavian Revolution in 1795. It was the predecessor state of the modern Netherlands and the first nation state of the Dutch people.
Louis XV's courtiers (including the princes of Conti and Eu, the counts of Clermont, Charolais and Belle-Isle, the duc de Richelieu, but also Maurice de Saxe, Augustus III's half-brother and the former lover of Anna Ivanovna, now the tsarina of Russia) joined up under marshal James FitzJames, Duke of Berwick to form an army for invading the Rhineland with the objectives of gaining the Duchy of Lorraine and distracting Austria from events in Poland.
Maurice, Count of Saxony was a German soldier and officer of the Army of the Holy Roman Empire, the Imperial Army, and at last in French service who became a Marshal and later also Marshal General of France. He is best known for his decisive victory at the Battle of Fontenoy and is honored in the Walhalla memorial.
Tsar, also spelled czar, or tzar, is a title used to designate East and South Slavic monarchs or supreme rulers of Eastern Europe, originally Bulgarian monarchs from 10th century onwards. As a system of government in the Tsardom of Russia and the Russian Empire, it is known as Tsarist autocracy, or Tsarism. The term is derived from the Latin word Caesar, which was intended to mean "Emperor" in the European medieval sense of the term—a ruler with the same rank as a Roman emperor, holding it by the approval of another emperor or a supreme ecclesiastical official —but was usually considered by western Europeans to be equivalent to king, or to be somewhat in between a royal and imperial rank.
James FitzJames, 1st Duke of Berwick, 1st Duke of Liria and Jérica, 1st Duke of Fitz-James, GE, KOGF was an Anglo-French military leader, illegitimate son of King James II of England by Arabella Churchill, sister of the 1st Duke of Marlborough. Berwick was a successful general in the pay of Louis XIV of France.
In the fall of 1733 the French army crossed the Rhine and besieged Kehl, near Strasbourg. Although they captured and occupied the fortress, most of the army was withdrawn to the west bank of the Rhine due to the onset of winter in December. During the winter, Austrian field marshal Prince Eugene of Savoy began gathering forces of the empire at a camp near Heilbronn to oppose the French. By the spring of 1734 these forces were still significantly smaller than those of France, which had nearly 70,000 men in the field.
The Siege of Kehl was one of the opening moves of the French Rhineland campaign in the War of the Polish Succession, at the fortress town of Kehl in the upper Rhine River valley. A large French army under the command of the Duke of Berwick besieged and captured the fortress, which was lightly garrisoned and in poor condition.
Strasbourg is the capital and largest city of the Grand Est region of France and is the official seat of the European Parliament. Located at the border with Germany in the historic region of Alsace, it is the capital of the Bas-Rhin department. In 2016, the city proper had 279,284 inhabitants and both the Eurométropole de Strasbourg and the Arrondissement of Strasbourg had 491,409 inhabitants. Strasbourg's metropolitan area had a population of 785,839 in 2015, making it the ninth largest metro area in France and home to 13% of the Grand Est region's inhabitants. The transnational Eurodistrict Strasbourg-Ortenau had a population of 915,000 inhabitants in 2014.
Prince Eugene of Savoy was a general of the Imperial Army and statesman of the Holy Roman Empire and the Archduchy of Austria and one of the most successful military commanders in modern European history, rising to the highest offices of state at the Imperial court in Vienna.
Freiherr Gottfried Ernst von Wuttgenau was given command of the fortress at Philippsburg in December 1733. The fortress was in deplorable condition, and its moat had in places been filled to the point where the ramparts could easily be approached. He focused defensive preparations on the fortress' flood controls, a significant defense against besiegers who were required to work in the swampy terrain below the fortress, while his engineer, Gerhard Cornelius von Walrave, directed repairs and improvements to the fortress' eastern works, where attacks had been focused in the past. By the spring of 1734 these preparations were largely complete, although the garrison was short of ammunition and experienced artillery personnel and engineers. The defenders consisted of a battalion of Walseggers, companies from the Kaiser's regiments of Württemberg, Max Hessen, Kettler, Müfflingen, Sachsen-Gotha, Wolfenbüttel, Walsegg, and Bevern, the Frankish Höltzl regiment, and companies from the Frankish Bassewitz and Heller regiments.
In late May 1734, the French began surrounding the fortress at Philippsburg. A total of 46 battalions were deployed, with 14 on the left bank of the Rhine, and the balance on the right bank, cutting the land approaches to the fortress. Of the troops on the right bank, half were dedicated to the siege, while the rest were detailed to defend the siege camp against any attempts to relieve the siege. On May 26 they began digging the outer trench surrounding the fortress with a complement of 12,000 men.
The siege works progressed under Berwick until June 12, when he was felled by a lucky shot while examining siege works at a forward position. Command of the besieging army then came to d'Asfeld. On June 19, Eugene, under orders from the Kaiser, began moving his army, which had since grown to over 70,000 men, toward Philippsburg with the goal of relieving the siege. On June 27 the army reached Bruchsal. D'Asfeld responded by building additional boat-bridges over the Rhine to speed the movement of cavalry across the river, and redirected some of the siege personnel to face Eugene's threat. The French position was further inconvenienced when heavy rains on July 5 caused portions of their position to be flooded. Despite these difficulties, Eugene failed to act decisively to capitalize on the situation, and withdrew his army.
By July 17 the French had penetrated the fortress' defenses to its inner moat, and were threatening the heart of the fortress. After failing to establish contact with Eugene, Wuttgenau and d'Asfeld agreed to terms of capitulation early on July 18.
Stanisław I Leszczyński was King of Poland, Grand Duke of Lithuania, Duke of Lorraine and a count of the Holy Roman Empire.
Count Claudius Florimund de Mercy was an Imperial field marshal, born at Longwy in Lorraine, now in France.
The Siege of Turin lasted from June to September 1706 when a French-led force besieged Victor Amadeus' capital of Turin during the War of the Spanish Succession. The siege was broken when a combined Savoyard/Imperial army relieved the city in September; this was a major turning point for the war in Italy.
The Battle of Bitonto was a Spanish victory over Austrian forces near Bitonto in the Kingdom of Naples in the War of Polish Succession. The battle ended organized Austrian resistance outside a small number of fortresses in the kingdom.
The Siege of Danzig of 1734 was the Russian encirclement and capture of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth city of Danzig (Gdańsk) during the War of Polish Succession. It was the first time that troops of France and Russia had met as foes in the field.
Claude François Bidal, marquis d'Asfeld, was a French Marshal of France.
The Siege of Lille was the salient operation of the 1708 campaign season during the War of the Spanish Succession. After an obstinate defence of 120 days, the French garrison surrendered the city and citadel of Lille, commanded by Marshal Boufflers, to the forces of the Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene.
The Battle of San Pietro, also known as the Battle of Crocetta or the Battle of Parma was a battle fought on June 29, 1734, between troops of France and Sardinia on one side, and Habsburg Austrian troops on the other, as part of the War of Polish Succession, between the village of La Crocetta and the city of Parma, then in the Duchy of Parma. Austrian troops assaulted an entrenched Franco-Sardinian position, and were ultimately repulsed, due in part to the death of their commander, Florimund Mercy, and the wounding of his second in command, Frederick of Württemberg. Both sides suffered significant casualties in the battle, which lasted for most of the day.
The Battle of Guastalla or Battle of Luzzara was a battle fought on 19 September 1734 between Franco-Sardinian and Austrian (Habsburg) troops as part of the War of the Polish Succession.
Ludwig Andreas Khevenhüller, Graf von Aichelberg-Frankenburg was an Austrian field-marshal who came of a noble family that was originally from Franconia and had settled in Carinthia.
The Siege of Capua was the last major military action of the War of the Polish Succession in the Kingdom of Naples. Austrian forces of the Habsburg Monarchy, under the command of the Austrian Marshal Otto Ferdinand von Abensberg und Traun, withstood for seven months a blockade begun in April 1734 by Spanish and French forces under Count Marsillac. General Traun surrendered the fortress of Capua in November 1734 with full honors of war, primarily because of exhausted provisions and ammunition, but also because it was clear no relief was coming to the isolated garrison.
The siege of Belgrade in 1717 occurred during the Austro-Venetian-Ottoman war (1714-1718), after the Austrian victory of Petrovaradin. The siege ended on August 17, 1717 with the conquest of the stronghold by Austrian troops under the command of Prince Eugene of Savoy.
Margrave (Prince) Hermann of Baden-Baden was a general and diplomat in the imperial service. He was Field Marshal, president of the Hofkriegsrat, and the representative of the Emperor in the Perpetual Diet of Regensburg.
After the defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo and the advance on Paris by the Coalition armies during the months of June and July 1815, although they besieged and took some towns and fortresses as they advance, they bypassed many of them and detached forces to observe and reduce them. The last of the French fortresses did not capitulate until September of that year.