France. Louis XIV (1638-1715), Battle of Leuze 1691, AE medal restruck late 18th. c. (72mm) by Molart
and Mauger (reverse). Laureate bust of Louis r., LVDOVICVS MAGNVS REX CHRISTIANISSIMVS, rev.
French cavalry soldier riding over a fallen enemy cavalryman, VIRTVS EQUITVM PRAETORIANORVM,
the power of the praetorian cavalry. (Jacquiot 520/II; van Loon, – (cfr IV, 73, 41 mm).
Good Extremely Fine with good bronze lustre, acquisition number “238” in ink faintly visible on the obverse.
Ex Michael Hall Col. 2010
The Battle of Leuze was a minor Cavalry engagement of the Nine Years War that took place on 18 September 1691 between a detachment of French and a slightly superior Allied force. The French Marshal, the Duke of Luxembourg had been informed that William III of Orange had left for England, in the supposition that the campaign of 1691 was at its end, in addition he was also informed that allied leader, the Prince of Waldeck, who was left in charge, was preparing to retire into winter quarters. Luxembourg was near Tournai and sent out a reconnaissance under Marsilly, from whom he learned that the main body of the Allied army was retreating, leaving a rear-guard of cavalry at Leuze. Luxembourg acted immediately. He sent a detachment to follow the movements of the main body, and attacked the allied rear-guard without warning. The French cavalry charged, only using their swords with the Duke of Luxembourg in the lead and in the thick of it (it is most likely him who is pictured on the rev. of this medal). Although the Allied cavalry was superior in numbers, they could not deploy efficiently because of the limited space in which they had to manoeuvre. The Allied infantry further ahead, including Mackay’s Regiment (a Scottish regiment) turned back to support their beleaguered rearguard cavalry but did not see much action. The French, having had the advantage retired after two hours of action when the Allied infantry arrived.