Imperial and Royal Army during the Napoleonic Wars

Imperial And Royal Army During The Napoleonic Wars

Imperial and Royal Army during the Napoleonic Wars

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The Imperial and Royal Army () was that of the Austrian Empire, formed on 11 August 1804 preceding the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire ruled by the Habsburgs, under Emperor Francis II (Emperor Francis I of Austria).

Background to the army

The key feature of army of the Austrian Empire during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (1792-1815) was that, due to the multi-national nature of the territories, regiments were split into Germans (including Czechs-troops recruited from Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia, Polish and Ukrainians units recruited from the territory of Galicia, Flemings and Walloons territory of the former Austrian Netherlands, and Italians) and Hungarian units separately, which also encompassed troops from Croatia and Transylvania.

Wartime conscription resulted in elements of untrained men in every battalion, a problem exacerbated by incoherent training across the regions. The army was beset by constant government frugality and a plethora of confusing orders and reorganisations. Although some regiments were disbanded in 1809 following the loss of their recruiting-grounds, others were allocated new areas yet kept their old designations; for example, the Walloon regiments whose recruiting areas were transferred to Bohemia.

The most powerful individual in the Army of the Austrian Empire during the period was Archduke Charles, who implemented wide-ranging and modernising reforms, particularly following the crushing defeat at Austerlitz. Charles was responsible...
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