Battaglione Guardia alla Città di Milano
City of Milan Guard Battalion

Uniform Guide

History

This Battalion was formed in 1811 to police and garrison the Kingdom of Italy's capital city. However the disasters of 1812 led to the unit seeing active service as summarised below:

1813 - Germany
787 men marched to Saxony under the command of Capo-Battaglione Varesi (or Varesio) where they became part of Peyri's 15th Division, IV Corps. They fought at Lützen and Bautzen and were caught in the ambush at Königswartha. After the armistice the battalion fought at Gross-Beeren, Dennewitz, Wartenburg, Leipzig & Hanau. The remnants of the division then marched back to Italy.
1814 - Italy
The battalion was reinforced, partly from the company of sapeur-pompiers (firemen) also raised in Milan in 1811, and formed part of Palombini's Division of the Army of Italy. They fought at Pescheira.

Organisation

The battalion was formed with six companies of fuciliere and no flank companies, otherwise it conformed to the standard infantry organisation.

[Milan guardsmen in Germany, 1813]

Uniform

The battalion wore the following uniform:

Headgear
All companies wore a French style shako with a brass lozenge-shaped plate bearing an imperial eagle. The shako bore a green, red and white cockade and a scarlet over white over green pom-pom. Chin scales and the edging of the black leather peak were also brass. For undress wear, a sky-blue bonnet-de-police fatigue cap was worn, piped in scarlet.
Coat
The coat was a sky blue habit-coat of the line infantry pattern. The collar and cuffs were scarlet, as was the piping on the square lapels and cuff flaps, shoulder straps and pocket. Turnbacks were white piped scarlet and bore scarlet grenade badge.
Breeches
Breeches and waistcoat were white worn with black gaiters with white metal buttons.

Sources

Software error:

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For help, please send mail to the webmaster (webmaster@napitalia.org.uk), giving this error message and the time and date of the error.

Software error:

[Sun Apr 30 21:26:14 2017] cite.pl: Can't locate Net/Amazon/AWSSign.pm in @INC (@INC contains: /usr/local/lib64/perl5 /usr/local/share/perl5 /usr/lib64/perl5/vendor_perl /usr/share/perl5/vendor_perl /usr/lib64/perl5 /usr/share/perl5 . /home/napitali/public_html/cgi-bin/require) at /home/napitali/public_html/cgi-bin/require/libio.pl line 16.
[Sun Apr 30 21:26:14 2017] cite.pl: BEGIN failed--compilation aborted at /home/napitali/public_html/cgi-bin/require/libio.pl line 16.
Compilation failed in require at /home/napitali/public_html/cgi-bin/cite.pl line 26.

For help, please send mail to the webmaster (webmaster@napitalia.org.uk), giving this error message and the time and date of the error.

I am also indebted to Marcello Marconi of Verona for information he provided about this unit.

The picture of the three guardsmen was drawn by Peter Schuchardt. You can see (and buy) many more of his excellent illustrations at his website - Compagnie d'Elite.