Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

Prince Eugene, a glorious knight.

Evgeny of Savoy(him. Prinz Eugen von Savoyen, October 18, 1663 - April 21, 1736) - an outstanding commander of the Holy Roman Empire, generalissimo.
The greatest warrior of his era and one of the best generals of all time.

The youngest son of Prince Eugene-Moritz of Savoy, Prince of Carignans, Eugene of Savoy (1663-1736), is by far the most prominent commander in the service of the Hapsburgs of all time. The Generalissimo, a military reformer and diplomat, one of the outstanding strategists of world history, lived a tumultuous, eventful life. Despite the fact that his family belonged to the cream of the aristocracy (maternal Eugene was a relative of the Bourbons - Soissons branch), the prince from an early age was out of the family's attention - the youngest sons, by tradition, became monks. Even a distant relative of Eugene, Louis XIV jokingly called him "the little abbot."
At the age of 10, our hero, who did not want to go to a monastery, already knew by heart the biographies of many famous people, above all the great commanders.And at the age of majority, Yevgeny finally abandons the monk's robe and appeals to the French king to give him a cavalry regiment or at least a squadron. During a brief audience, Louis XIV replied to Eugene with a categorical refusal: “The request was modest, but the one who asked was not.” Probably, many years later, the king repeatedly regretted that he was holding a real diamond in his hands, but lost it. The ambitious prince, offended by the refusal, promised to return to France just as “in arms”.
There was another reason: his mother - the wife of Olympia Mancini, the niece of Cardinal Mazarin, (and one of the favorites of Louis, according to some rumors of a possible father, Eugene) was suspected of involvement in a high-profile case of poisoners, and was expelled from France.
In 1683, fate itself gave him an excellent chance: the Ottoman Empire began the war with the Holy Roman Empire.
It was the peak of the strength and power of the Ottoman Empire and their last onslaught in the west. By that time, almost all the Balkans, the Black Sea region, the Crimea, the Middle East, North Africa, Egypt, the Arab world, and Transcaucasia belonged to the Turks. And now the 200 thousandth Turkish army laid siege to Vienna.

Thousands of volunteers from all over Europe went to Emperor Leopold I in Vienna. Among them were even the French princes of blood; Prince Eugene joined the Dragoon Regiment, headed by his elder brother Julius-Louis.

In October 1683, when the Allied forces were preparing to storm the Turkish camp, a young officer from the heights of the Vienna Woods first saw Vienna, a city which he subsequently entered as liberator and which became his real home for the rest of his life.

The famous Vienna Victoria of the Christian world over Porto became possible thanks to, first of all, the military assistance of the Polish king Jan III Sobessa, as well as the Duke of Lorraine and the electors of Saxon and Bavaria. Brother Eugene died during the battle, so the prince took command of the regiment and for his heroism he received the title of colonel from the hands of the emperor. At the age of twenty.

in 1686, Eugene took part in the storming of Buda and received the rank of general. Two years later, he makes a decisive contribution to the capture of the Belgrade by the imperial army.

Then Leopold sends him to Italy, where the prince with almost unchanged success fights with the French during the so-called Nine-Year War.

In 1690 he was appointed commander of the Austrian troops in Italy and united with the Duke of Savoy, Victor Amadeus. The latter, contrary to the advice of Eugene, joined the Battle of Staffard with the French, was defeated, and only the bravery and stewardship of Eugene saved the Allied forces from final destruction.
In 1691, Eugene forced Marshal Katin to lift the siege of Kony Fortress; in the same year of 1691, with the vanguard of the army, the duke of Savoy invaded Dauphine and captured several fortresses.


In 1696, during the peace negotiations between Savoy and France, Louis XIV tried to entice the prince, offering him the title of Marshal of France, the governorship in the province of Champagne and 200,000 livres of annual income. As you can see, the high military reputation of Evgeny of Savoy forced the former overlord to reconsider his attitude towards him; however, the prince never once violated this oath.


In 29 years, Eugene of Savoy becomes the marshal of the empire! Then his services are again required in the east. The Turks are retreating, and in 1697 Prince Eugene deals them a crushing blow, utterly defeating Sultan Mustafa II himself at Zenta.


The defeat of the Turks at Zenta in 1697. Engraving from Theatrum Europaeum


The battle of Zenta not only decided the outcome of the campaign, but also revolutionized the military art of the time. The Turks then invaded Hungary and threatened Peterwardein and Segedin. Eugene strengthened Segedin and spoke out against the Turks. When he learned that the Turkish army had moved to Tissu at Zenta, he changed direction and also moved his army by a forced march towards Zenta. The number of Turkish troops far exceeded the Austrian. When Savoy was in a few kilometers from Zenta, a courier from Vienna unexpectedly arrived to him and conveyed the imperial message. Eugene is strictly forbidden to enter into a hopeless struggle. The commander carefully read the letter and ... began the offensive. But then the emperor said that he was so excited about the upcoming battle that he simply forgot to read the letter. There was only one thing left for the court - to make a good face on a bad game.

The offensive began at 4 pm. Savoy on the march rebuilt his army in twenty columns and, approaching Zente, immediately opened hostilities. Not only the time, but also the method of attack were unusual. According to the rules of military art of that time, the offensive began at dawn, so that a whole day would be left to fight, and those who rested would usually take part in the battlebuilt in the right closed ranks of the troops. This time there was no time for a long battle, because in September it was already dark by six o'clock. And the battle lasted only two hours, and when the sun rose, it was all over.

The Turks lost 30 thousand people, while the Austrians lost only five hundred. This concentrated, dreadful blow was struck because every unit, every part knew what it was fighting for and was ready, if need be, to fight without receiving a direct order on its own initiative. The army felt as one and in battle there was no difference between the cavalry, consisting of noblemen, and infantry and artillery. In addition, the Austrians, Slovenes, Croats, who were part of the army of Yevgeny Savoy, equally hated the Turks, whose fault many of them lost loved ones and relatives, many were burned at home and devastated fields. In no other war, could Eugene have so brilliantly implemented his new principles of the art of war, his experience of creating a new, constructive army.
Here is a quote from the book "Great Commanders" by M. Golitsyn:
“Up to 20,000 Turks fell on the spot, including a lot of our Pasha and the High Vizier himself. The entire camp from the opposite side of Teysa and the huge prey went to the winners, as well as 100 large and 60 smaller guns, hundreds of banners, badges, horsetails ... Sultan with the remnants of his army fled to Temesvár (Hungary). The losses of the imperial army were 430 soldiers dead and 1600 wounded. "

This victory became known far beyond the borders of Austria - Eugene became one of the most prominent commanders in Europe. And the Austrian army, which for a long time was somewhere in the sixth or seventh place, after the Swedish and Polish, became under his command one of the best and most efficient armies in Europe.


Glory, honors and money poured on the prince as from a horn of plenty. However, Evgeny of Savoy honestly deserved them: he did not bow to the bullets and was wounded 13 times for half a century of service to the Habsburg. The prince was hot-blooded, sometimes rude and cruel, but his military gift was redeemed, thanks to which the imperial troops won one brilliant victory after another.
Yevgeny of Savoy adhered to unconventional views on the war at that time.His diverse combat experience (the war with the French was conducted by different rules than with the Turks) allowed skillfully to combine various tactical techniques, leading the enemy into confusion. Eugene considered mobility to be the most important quality of the army, therefore cavalry was assigned a special role in his troops.
This warlord loved non-standard solutions. Thus, in 1702, Prince Eugene did what, 19 centuries before him and 100 years after him, Suvorov: the imperial army crossed the Alps along mountain paths and caught the French troops of Marshal Katina by surprise. Later, in 1718, again fighting the Turks in Serbia, Prince Eugene took the battle under extremely unfavorable conditions - at dawn, in thick fog, moreover, the enemy had a fourfold numerical superiority. Nevertheless, the risk paid off: the soldiers of Yevgeny of Savoy managed to repel the attacks of the enemy, throw the Turks back and, having turned them to flight, take Belgrade.


At the beginning of the 18th century, Europe found itself in an acute crisis that led to the war, on a scale not inferior to Thirty Years -War of the Spanish Succession.


Hapsburg ruled Spain for 200 years. The dynasty, however, was divided into Spanish and Austrian branches, but they always supported each other in politics and wars. And in 1700 the Spanish branch of the Habsburgs was cut short.The heirs were only side, and the prize is very tempting. The Spanish crown belonged to the richest Netherlands, half of Italy, Sicily, Sardinia, and the largest colonial empire from South America to the Philippines.


France, who fought steadily at that time under the rule of the sun king Louis XIV for domination in Europe, nominated her candidate for the throne - Philip of Anjou, grandson of Louis. Austria, opposing the French on the continent, her own - the youngest son of the emperor - Charles (II - as the Spanish king, and VI - as the future German emperor). Both applicants occupied parts of Spanish territory, where they had support, and hostilities unfolded throughout Europe.

The fighting path in this long war in brief looks like this:
In 1701, appointed commander-in-chief in Italy, he made a difficult transition through the Trident Alps, and after victories at Capri and Chiari, he occupied Lombardy as far as the Olio River. He began the campaign of 1702 with a surprise attack on Cremona, and Marshal Villeroi was captured; then defended very skillfully against the superior forces of the duke of Vendome.
Appointed president of the Gofkrygsrat, Eugene took a series of measures that saved Austria from the greatest danger put in her by the Hungarian uprising and the successes of the French in Bavaria.
In 1704, together with the Duke of Marlborough, Eugene defeated Gochstedt, which led to the defection of Bavaria from an alliance with Louis XIV.
In 1705, Eugene was sent to Spain, where he stopped the success of Vandom, and in 1706, he won a victory near Turin, which forced the French to clear Italy.
In 1707 he invaded Provence and besieged Toulon, but without success; in 1708, together with Marlborough, defeated Wandom at Oudenaarde and took Lille, and in 1709 defeated Villars at Malplak.
In 1712, Eugene was defeated under Denin and in 1714 signed the Rashtadt Peace.
Prince Eugene fought in this war on many fronts.
For a start, he cleared the enemy of Italy, then, having moved to the German front, together with another triumph of this war, the English generalissimo duke of Marlborough, Prince Eugene won a brilliant victory over the French-Bavarian army at Gochstedt on August 13, 1704. In 1708, Prince Eugene and the Duke of Marlborough again joined forces and defeated the French in a bloody battle at Audenaarde.
The Allies achieved almost everything they wanted: Italy, the Netherlands, most of Alsace were in their hands. Failures were pursued only by the Archduke Charles,who first took Madrid, but was then knocked out by Philip V.
France was exhausted by the war. Louis XIV has aged and lost confidence. Attempts to negotiate peace (1709) began. But they were thwarted by the intransigent position of the new emperor Joseph I, the son of the deceased Leopold. The war continued.
In 1709, this duet of Eugene and Marlborough celebrated Victoria after the most bloody battle of the XVIII century in Malplak. They had about 100 thousand soldiers. It should be said that the Allies won the victory at a too expensive price. Constant frontal attacks gave only a tactical result: the losses amounted to 25 thousand killed, the defeated French had “only” 14 thousand soldiers. (option: 22-12).
It became clear that France just would not give up.
Soon, Emperor Joseph, who had ruled for only 5 years, soon died, and Archduke Charles, the unsuccessful contender for the Spanish crown, inherited him.
Over Europe, the prospect of creating a new super-empire under Charles's hand loomed. This could not allow even the British and German allies. The war should have ended.
The Utrecht and Ranstadt peace treaties were a compromise that enshrined the following for the coming decades:
- Spain was left for Philippe Bourbon, but he refused the right to inherit the French throne, Spain itself lost a lot in this war and left the number of leading European powers,
- France was defeated in an attempt to become the hegemon of Europe and the world, respectively
- The Habsburgs failed to reunify the Austrian and Spanish crowns, thus becoming the most powerful power in turn
- in return, Austria received significant territorial acquisitions: Southern Spanish Netherlands (modern Belgium), Milan, territories in Italy, Sardinia (which the emperor a little later traded to the Duke of Savoy for Sicily, such things were then possible)
- The Netherlands has become independent.
- England took another step on the path to world domination, preventing the emergence of superpowers on the continent once again, and she also received Gibraltar.
Austria did not get all that she wanted. Therefore, in particular, the emperor formally refused to sign the Peace of Utrecht. But the outcome was still very good for her. And in many respects this is the merit of the Prince of Savoy.
Glory Eugene of Savoy reached its apogee.The Austrian Emperor Joseph I showered him with favors; Russian Tsar Peter I offered the Polish crown, which Eugene wisely refused, because he knew that all those in power and generals had considerable trouble and problems on the lands of the Commonwealth.
In 1716, the confrontation between the Austrians and the Turks in the Balkans was renewed. The prince triumphs at Petervarden and Belgrade. Despite the court intrigues and the unfavorable attitude of Emperor Charles VI towards him, Yevgeny of Savoy still has a considerable influence on the affairs of the empire, especially in foreign policy and the military sphere. For nearly 16 years he was engaged exclusively in public affairs. Once again the prince was commander-in-chief of the Austrian army during the war for the Polish inheritance (1734-1735), but he did not win any special laurels. Probably, political reasons played an important role, which always “won”, or, more precisely, paralyzed the military plans of a no longer old prince. In the last two years of incomplete life, Evgeny of Savoy was responsible for conducting military reform in the Habsburg Empire.
Not being a highly educated person and not being a major military theorist, Prince Eugene was not a stupid Rubak: he always understood that war, in the words of Clausewitz, is only a continuation of politics by other means.His political influence in the last years of Leopold I’s rule became increasingly significant. In 1700 he entered a narrow circle of closest advisors to the Gofkrygsrat. At the same time, the prince openly expressed his views. Therefore, opals in the life of Eugene of Savoy were almost as frequent as the triumphs in the role of battles.
Campaign against the Turks. Late years
In 1716, he defeated the Turks at Petervardenein (now Novi Sad) and took Temesvar, and the following year won a decisive victory near Belgrade. These victories dealt a strong blow to the power of the Turks in Europe and led to the conclusion of the Pozarevka peace.
Until 1724, he was a regular in the Austrian Netherlands. Charles VI did not treat Eugenius with such confidence as Leopold I and Joseph I; the party hostile to him at court increased, but nevertheless his influence was felt when solving all important state issues.
In the role of commander-in-chief, Eugene appeared again in the war for the Polish inheritance (1734-1735), but was soon recalled.
This was Austria after the Pozarevacky world.
In 1703, Savoysky became the chairman of the military military council, which corresponds to the post of minister of war and supreme commander in our day.True then, under Leopold I, he did not take an active part in the political leadership of the country. Only under Joseph I and later under Charles VI of Savoy, becoming a member of the highest political body of the State of the Privy Council, became the crowned emperor, as his contemporaries called him. He happened to live with three emperors from the Habsburg house, and he joked in his declining years: Tleopold I was my father, Joseph I was my brother, Charles VI was my lord.
Prince Eugene of Savoy made a radical transformation in the Austrian army. He understood that in order to win the war, it is necessary to conduct it in a new way, and for this you need to have the best weapons and equipment, the best material conditions for officers and soldiers, and generally a solid financial base. From the point of view of Eugene of Savoy, the war, suspended due to lack of money, is a previously lost war. Eugene constantly fought with the yard for every penny for the supply and equipment of his army, for the best weapons, for ensuring that soldiers' salaries were paid in full. Such actions caused the soldiers confidence in the commander in chief, and Eugene was given confidence in his subordinates.
And the main principle of the field marshal's military strategy was not only the decisive defeat of the enemy, but also the complete destruction of his military potential.
The last battle, led by 71-one-year-old Yevgeny of Savoy, on the battlefield, was successful - the Austrians won it against the Polish troops.
Prince Eugene of Savoy was a wealthy gentleman. He owned palaces - a summer residence in Belvedere and a winter residence on Himelfordgasse in the center of Vienna, an estate in Marchfeld near Vienna and in Hungary. The gardeners alone in his estates were 1,500 people. Its famous library and art collection is well known all over the world.
Prince Eugene died of pneumonia on April 21, 1736 at the age of 73 in his winter palace and was buried in Kreuzkapelle of St. Stephen’s Cathedral.
His services to Austria, his brilliant mind and valiant heart made him, in spite of his foreign origin, a national Austrian hero. Books are written about him, schoolchildren and students study his life, songs are composed about him. The noble rider - so named in one of the famous songs. So he was, so will remain in people's memory.

The prince remained in people's memory. This song was sung by an Austrian soldier marching for another 200 years.


Prinz Eugen der edle Ritter
Prinz Eugen, der edle Ritter
wollt? dem Kaiser wiedrum kriegen
Stadt und Festung Belgarad.
Er lie? schlagen einen brukken
da? man kunnt hin? berrucken
mit der Armee wohl vor die Stadt.
Als der brucken war geschlagen
da? man kunnt mit stuck und wagen
frei passiern den Donauflu?
Bei semlin schlug man das lager
alle t? rken zu verjagen
ihn? n zum Spott und zum Verdru?
Am einundzwanzigsten august soeben
Kam ein Spion bei Sturm und Regen,
Schwur's dem Prinzen und zeigt's ihm an,
Da? die t? rken futragieren,
So viel, als man kunnt versp? Ren,
An die dreimalhunderttausend Mann.
Als prinz eugenius dies vernommen,
Lie? er gleich zusammenkommen
Sein Gen'ral und Feldmarschall.
Er t? T sie recht instruieren
Wie man sollt die truppen f? Hren
Und den feind recht greifen an.
Bei der Parol t? T er befehlen,
Da? man sollt die Zw? lfe z? hlen,
Bei der Uhr um Mitternacht.
Da sollt alls zu pferd aufsitzen,
Mit dem Feinde zu scharm? Tzen,
Was zum Streit nur h? Tte Kraft.
Alles sa? auch gleich zu pferde,
Jeder griff nach seinem Schwerte,
Ganz still r? Ckt man aus der Schanz.
Die Musketier 'wie auch die Reiter
T? Ten alle tapfer streiten:
s war f? rwahr ein sch? ner Tanz!
Ihr Konstabler auf der Schanzen,
Spielet auf zu diesem tanzen
Mit Kartaunen gro? und klein;
Mit den gro? En, mit den kleinen
Auf die T? Rken auf die Heiden,
Da? sie laufen all davon!
Prinz Eugenius auf der Rechten
T? T als wie ein l? We fechten,
Als General und Feldmarschall.
Prinz Ludewig ritt auf und nieder.
Halt euch brav, ihr deutschen Br? Der,
Greift den feind nur herzhaft an!
Prinz Ludwig, der mu? T aufgeben
Seinen Geist und junges Leben,
Ward getroffen von dem Blei.
Prinz Eugen war sehr betr? Bet,
weil er ihn so sehr geliebet,
lie? ihn bringen nach Peterwardein.
Translation of the first lines from Schweik:
The brave knight, Prince Eugene,
promised the monarch in Vienna,
what Belgrade will return to him:
pontoon bridge,
and immediately go columns
to war as to parade
Soon the bridge was thrown
and heavy carts move
together with the army beyond the Danube.
Under our Earth have become ours,
to make porridge from turks ...
In the video, a fragment of the same song.
The winged hussars are the troops of Jan Sobessky.

Monument to Eugene on the Vienna square Heldenplatz.


And this is the heavy cruiser Kriegsmarine "Prince Eugen". The Third Reich considered him and his hero.

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  • Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

    Prince Eugene, a glorious knight

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