Monday 14 September 2009
Ober Adjudant von Hohnhorst
Captain Lieutenant von Limbourg (brother of the Grenadier Lieutenant below?)
Captain von Schelen
Lieutenant v. Schlepegrell
Captain Lieutenant Wense
Lieutenant Wense (Otto Friedrich)(younger brother of above?)
"If one paints someone's portrait, one should not know him if possible. No knowledge. I do not want to know him at all. I want only to see what is there, the outside. The inner follows by itself. It is mirrored in the visible."(Otto Dix)
My thanks again to Baron von Spoercken for making these available to my readers.
Lieutenant de la Porte
Lieutenant von Buttlar
All these portraits were painted in the late 1740's and I believe that they all show officers of Sporken's own regiment, 2A using the later numbering system, which he became chef of in 1742. The facing colour of that regiment, according to Pengel and Hurt, was straw, and if this assumption is correct, then this is a darker straw than, for example, shown by Kronoskaf in their illustration. Of course there is also the possibility that the paintings have darkened over the years.
My thanks to Baron von Spoercken, from whose private collection these all come.
Tuesday 8 September 2009
From the same collection as the other portraits shown, this one is labelled up as "Unbekannter offizier" or unknown officer. I think he is an infantry officer but I invite your speculation in the comments section below.
This one, and the previous one in 'Portraits of Hanoverian SYW Officers (2)' were painted in 1748/9 so while strictly speaking they predate the war by a few years they are close enough to be considered contemporary.
Monday 7 September 2009
This portrait is contemporary with the SYW and is of a Lieutenant von Limbourg.
He looks obviously like a Grenadier officer (although I thought Grenadier officers wore the tricorne**) and he looks like he might have served in the Grenadier company of Spörken’s foot regiment (2A) which had buff facings and yellow lace (he cannot be an officer of the Grenadiers a cheval as their facings were black). I say this because this was also sent to me by Baron von Spoercken, who owns a collection of portraits of officers who served his predecessor either in a regimental or staff context. Notice the cuirasse which was unusual for a foot officer to wear but which may have something to do with posing for a portrait. As far as I know, this picture has never appeared on the web.
My thanks to the Baron for sending me the photograph.
Lastly, I’m hoping soon to be able to show you “Die Revue bei Bemerode 1735”
soon and in greater detail than has been available to date.
** Update. I've had it confirmed by a very reliable source that Hanoverian grenadier officers did wear the mitre!
This portrait shows Lt.General Freiherr Friedrich August von Spörken towards the end of his life (he died in 1776). He appears to have been the senior Hanoverian general in the SYW and commanded at the allied victory of Warburg in 1760. I’ve looked through Savory for a potted biography of the individual but without success. His rank is somewhat of a mystery too; in 1759 he is listed by Savory as a Lieutenant-General but by Warburg he has a number of other Lieutenant-Generals under his command so either he has been promoted to Full general or his seniority gave him command. At the end of the war Ferdinand handed over command of the allied army to him so he is clearly very senior. I’ve also read that Ferdinand was disapproving of his performance at Minden, which is surprising as it was his Division or Column, with the British foot regiments, that marched so splendidly into the lion’s den and more or less single handily delivered up Allied success.
I don’t read German so I’m asking my readers if there is a biography of von Spörken that perhaps could be translated into English? Or has anybody assembled biographical details of him? Or indeed, would someone be interested in doing so?
My thanks to Baron von Spoercken for sending me the photograph.