NAP679 French 5th Hussars Officer
The French 5th Hussars was originally formed (under various different names, including as part of Lauzun’s Legion) during the Ancien Regime but was finally given the title of 5th Hussars in 1793. It fought in many battles of the Napoleonic wars with great distinction, receiving battle honors for Jena, Eckmuhl, Borodino, and Hanau. Marshall Ney also began his distinguished military career with the 5th hussars in 1787.
Hussars of course had a reputation for being the dashing, if unruly, adventurers of the army. The traditional image of the hussar is of a reckless, hard-drinking, moustachioed swashbuckler.
General Lasalle, an archetypal hussar officer, once remarked that “Any hussar who is not dead by the age of thirty is a blackguard.”