Battle of Trippstadt

Battle of Trippstadt
Part of the French Revolutionary Wars
DateJuly 13-17 1794
Location
Trippstadt Germany in the lower Vosges Mountains
ResultFrench victory
Belligerents
France French Republic Prussia
Holy Roman Empire Habsburg Austria
Commanders and leaders
France Claude Michaud
France René Moreaux
France Alexandre Taponier
France Laurent Saint-Cyr
Kingdom of Prussia Wichard Möllendorf
Holy Roman Empire Hohenlohe-Kirchberg
Kingdom of Prussia Prince Hohenlohe
Strength
50,000[1]70,000
Casualties and losses
UnknownUnknown

Site of the Battle of Trippstadt

The Battle of Trippstadt was a relatively minor French military action in 1794 during the War of the First Coalition. The clash between French Republican forces and the armies of Prussia and Habsburg Austria was fought over several days (July 13-17) in the lower Vosges Mountains in the German states west of the Rhine River. Fighting occurred across a wide front and included action in Kaiserslautern, Trippstadt, Schänzel, Neustadt and along the banks of the Speyerbach River.

The Battle is also sometimes referred to as the Battle of Vosges, however, most documented historical reports including French and German language studies refer to the battle by the name of Trippstadt. Some studies also mention Platzberg; however, few studies call the action the Battle of Vosges.[2]

Introduction

During the first two years of the War of the First Coalition, the north-eastern frontier of France bordering the Holy Roman Empire along the Upper Rhine served as invasion route for the enemies of France.

In 1792, the Duke of Brunswick entered France through the north-eastern frontier in his attempt to support and rescue Louis XVI.[3] In 1793, coalition forces including the Prussians and the Habsburg Austrians attempted to capture French fortresses along the Rhine and attacked the French defensive entrenchments along the Lauter River.[4] By the summer of 1794, conflict in this theater of the war had reached a stalemate with armies facing each other in the Palatinate Forest of the lower Vosges Mountains.

At that time, the French Army of the Rhine commanded by Claude Michaud occupied a defensive position along the Queich River while the French Army of the Moselle commanded by René Moreaux occupied a defensive position along the Saar River.[5]

Directly across from the “Moselle” to the north at Trippstadt were the Prussians commanded by Field Marshall Wichard Mollendorf. And directly across from the “Rhin” stretching from the Vosges Mountains east to the Rhine River were the Austrians commanded by Friedrich Wilhelm von Hohenlohe-Kirchberg and Prussians commanded by Prince Hohenlohe.[1]

Given this standstill during the summer of 1794, the French armies were ordered to attack the armies of the coalition to prevent the Habsburg Austrians from sending reinforcements to the critical northern front in the Austrian Netherlands.[2]