Befreiungskriege 1813-14

Painting and modelling 28mm Napoleonic wargaming miniatures

Saxon Army Resources

In readiness for the first releases in the Calpe range of Saxon 1813 figures, I’ve decided to start compiling a special page of research resources. Mainly, these will be to aid my painting and the organization of units. If you discover any ones I don’t mention here, please feel free to add comments below.

Knotel uniform plates

One of the best researched and most beautifully illustrated uniformology resources is the series of plates painted by the father-and-son Knotel team. Just search through the page for “Sachsen”.

Knotel Band 1 Plate 5 Knotel Band 1 Plate 16 Knotel Band 1 Plate 46 Knotel Band 2 Plate 23 Knotel Band 2 Plate 49 Knotel Band 7 Plate 6 Knotel Band 7 Plate 55 Knotel Band 8 Plate 6 Knotel Band 9 Plate 60 Knotel Band 11 plate 15 Knotel Band 18 Plate 20 Knotel Band 18 Plate 31 Knotel Band 19 Plate 45

Knötel and Lezius Sturm cigarette cards

A total of 18 illustrations from an extensive German cigarette card collection of German uniforms created by Herbert Knötel and Martin Lezius.

GeneralGrenadier of the Leib-Grenadier-Garde regimentTambourmajor of the König regimentMusketeer of the Prinz Anton regimentSappeur of the Prinz Maximilian regimentOfficer of the 3rd provisional regimentLight infantryHornist of the jager corpsGarde du Corps regimentStandard bearer of the  von Polenz chevauleger regimentTrooper of the Prinz Albrecht chevauleger regiment Trooper of the hussar regimentTrumpeter of the Prinz Clemenz uhlan regiment Foot artillery gunnerArtillery train soldierHussar of the Banner of VolunteersSharpshooter of the Banner of VolunteersSaxon Landwehr

The uniform plates of Alexander Sauerweid

The camera wasn’t around in Napoleonic times, so the nearest you can get to a photographic record of history comes from contemporary artworks of the period. Alexander Sauerweid was a well-known artist of the period and he drew a number of plates of the new Saxon army uniforms introduced in 1810. The French influence on the Saxons at this time is clear:

1810 plates

Sauerweid 1810 Plate 1Sauerweid 1810 Plate 2Sauerweid 1810 Plate 3Sauerweid 1810 Plate 4Sauerweid 1810 Plate 5Sauerweid 1810 Plate 6Sauerweid 1810 Plate 7Sauerweid 1810 Plate 8Sauerweid 1810 Plate 9Sauerweid 1810 Plate 10Sauerweid 1810 Plate 11Sauerweid 1810 Plate 12Sauerweid 1810 Plate 13Sauerweid 1810 Plate 14Sauerweid 1810 Plate 15Sauerweid 1810 Plate 16Sauerweid 1810 Plate 17Sauerweid 1810 Plate 18Sauerweid 1810 Plate 19Sauerweid 1810 Plate 20Sauerweid 1810 Plate 21Sauerweid 1810 Plate 22Sauerweid 1810 Plate 23Sauerweid 1810 Plate 24Sauerweid 1810 Plate 25Sauerweid 1810 Plate 26Sauerweid 1810 Plate 27Sauerweid 1810 Plate 28Sauerweid 1810 Plate 29Sauerweid 1810 Plate 30

1811 plates

Sauerweid 1811 Plate 1Sauerweid 1811 Plate 2Sauerweid 1811 Plate 3Sauerweid 1811 Plate 4Sauerweid 1811 Plate 5Sauerweid 1811 Plate 6Sauerweid 1811 Plate 7Sauerweid 1811 Plate 8Sauerweid 1811 Plate 9Sauerweid 1811 Plate 10

Augsburger Uniformserie

A series of plates produced in Augsburg between 1802 and 1810. They cover many nations but the following are specifically of Saxon soliders (though, sadly there’s little annotation to enable correct identification of the units and dates so I’ve added my own conjectural notes here):

Augsburg Plate 41 Augsburg Plate 42 Augsburg Plate 43 Augsburg Plate 44 Augsburg Plate 45 Augsburg Plate 46 Augsburg Plate 47 Augsburg Plate 48 Augsburg Plate 49

Lienhart and Humbert uniform plates

A set of five plates covering the Saxon army throughout the Napoleonic Wars:

Original Saxon uniforms in German museums

At least three museums in modern-day Germany have original items from Saxom uniforms in their collections:

While these official sites for the museums don’t have photographs of the items, the German site Napoleon Online has collected together some useful snapshots and detail pictures.

The Saxon Army 1810-13

Written by Howard Giles, with sketches by Geoff Gibbs, this was first published as a pamphlet by the Napoleonic Association in 1979. The Napoleon Series site now hosts an online version of this work but the navigation between the individual sections doesn’t work, so here are links to each one:


There are very few English language books about the Saxons (let alone ones in print):

Peter F. has reminded me that his French friend Frederic Berjeaud has been working on a book about the Saxons for some time. Frederic now has his own Web site and is selling draft versions of his book in sections. Peter tells me “there is simply no better source for info. on the Saxons.” High praise indeed!


Here’s an interesting thread about various issues of 1813 Saxon uniforms (mainly infantry facing colours) on the General de Brigade forum. It demonstrates the complexity of this topic but mentions a number of useful reference points.

16 Responses to “Saxon Army Resources”

  1. How doos Martin

    A great idea and you seem to have got the sources that initially sprung to mind. D’oh! So much for any moments of fleeting glory for me!!! 8O)

    Luckily, like a battle winning charge of the heavy cavalry(!), I then remembered about the Histofg site and their uniform plates at

    In the books line for those interested in 1812 I have a little pamphlet/booklet entitled “The Battle of Gorodetschna” by “A. Michael Sayce”. This is a battle in the south between a combined Saxon & Austrian army and Russians. It is a mere 18 pages and gives quick details of the campaign around the battle, the battle itself, maps, wargaming the battle, various orders of battle, a little “what-if?” had more Russian formations arrived, and a bibliography of books & internet sources. No uniform etc details. You can only do so much in 18 pages!

    The only publication details I have are:

    Text and Maps © A.Michael Sayce, 2002
    Hamlet Models
    180 Twickenham Road
    West Midlands
    B44 0SY

    I got mine from Caliver Books.

    Do with these what you will.

    Im looking forward to more Calpe releases – Prussian and Saxon. I suspect the Saxons are going to give me some grief – will the white uniforms be shaded grey or brown. I’ve seen white uniforms done both ways with pleasing results.

    von Peter himself

  2. Robert Swan said

    I’m really looking forward to those Saxons! Thanks for the links.

    I was able to pick up a mint copy of “Poles and Saxons of the Napoleonic Wars” online from On Military Matters in New Jersey . Maybe they have more in stock.

    It’s a great book.


  3. Martin said

    Peter: thanks for reminding me of Histofig. I don’t know why I didn’t think to check there. I’ll add that link. You’re right – there’s going to be a lot of white to paint with these Saxons. For what it’s worth, I currently shade white with greys.

    Robert: I agree, it’s a great book. I was licky enough to find my copy in a local second-hand military bookshop several years ago.

  4. Cyril said

    Great pics of Saxon uniforms here:

    (scroll down to Saxony)


  5. Rafa Pardo said

    I am building a 1813 Saxon contingent in plastic (20mm) to be used in a wargaming replay of the Campaign of Leipzig (fall 1813). I have used all almost all the cited sources as well as uniformology information from Knotel or Fucken
    The full history is at my blog and (more extended) in my web site

    Regards from Spain

  6. Rafa Pardo said

    Not a resource but an AAR about a wargaming re-fight of the battle of Kalisz (february 1813), the lasy battle of the Russian campaign or the first of the 1813 campaign as you prefer. The Saxons fought well but the feeble reunier and the Penal french regiments do not were match for the pursuing Russian.
    See the narrative and the pictures at my web-site
    Battle of Kalisz
    Regards from Spain
    Project Leipzig (1813)
    Wargaming with Napoleonic Miniatures

  7. Rafa Pardo said

    Sorry for the bad link above
    Battle of Kalisz

  8. Andrew Brentnall said

    The Napoleon Series Site is a wonderful source, but I would like to point out an error in Part V Colours and Standards. It occurs in a number of other sources as well, but I hope people will not mind if I try and correct it and give my sources. The obverse and reverse of the infantry colours are the wrong way around. Those of the cavalry are the right way around, but unfortunately the obverse (the second of the two illustrations) is title reverse (as is the first illustration). The German Army Museum in Dresden has an unrivalled collection of material on the Saxon Flags, including 3 infantry and a number of cavalry of this period, and all of the infantry flags covering the subsequent period 1820-1871. All have the Royal arms on the obverse (with the pole to the left) and the royal monogram on the reverse (with the pole to the right). I have seen a number of these in the flesh, and can vouch for the accuracy. There is also a colour illustrated booklet, produced by the Saxon Military History circle which includes colour photographs of all the existing ones to confirm this arrangement. Also “Sachsische Fahnen und Standarten” written by J Hottenroth in Dresden in 1910 confirms this. I do not know when the unfortunate inversion so common in wargames flags was first introduced, but it would be great if we could restore The Royal Saxon arms to the appropriate side of our flags!

    Regards from Mons

    Andrew Brentnall

  9. Very interesting and useful information. I imagine one original error has been replicated over and over.

    I hope Grahame Black at GMB Designs has his obverses and reverses sorted as this is where I hope to be sourcing my Saxon flags from. I have been pestering Graham for these Saxon flags for literally years and they have been on his to do list for a long time. I believe that the intricacies of the borders etc were a little intimidating!! 8O)

    Not only will the Calpe Saxon releases gives us Saxons but hopefully also mean the arrival of some of the GMB Designs masterpieces of flags for them as well.

    von Peter himself

  10. Martin said

    Andrew: thanks for the observation about flags. I think a quick e-mail to Grahame is in order…

  11. Grahame said


    Right then…

    consider them corrected.


  12. Good man Grahame! 8O)

    von Peter himself

  13. Martin

    good to meet you and Peter at Colours enjoyed our chat


    the saxons should have won but hey second is good….

    can you contact me on




  14. Andrew Brentnall said

    I know this thread seems long dead, but I wondered if anyone had come across the series of German booklets produced by Jorg Titze on the Saxon Army? At the moment there seem to be five booklets of about fifty pages each on the Saxon infantry of 1810-13, the third of which focuses on the flags. Would love to hear from anyone who has copies.

    Andrew Brentnall

  15. […] Above: A Saxon Grenadier Guardsman as seen on a Knötel and Lezius Sturm cigarette card. Many thanks to Befreiungskriege 1813-14 Saxon Army Resources […]

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