We know that the Swiss guards were disbanded in the aftermath of the Assault on the Tuileries, on August 10, 1792, and all other Swiss troops in French service followed soon thereafter. We also know that 300 Swiss guards lived past August 10, 1792, by virtue of being deployed in Normandy at the time.

Louis XVI had a total of 11 Swiss line infantry regiments by 1792, all of which were also disbanded after the events at the Tuileries. Who did they serve afterward?

  • Is there a list of the soldiers that were part of the Swiss Army that were in the 1792 Massacre? I have a Uncle that told me of the story and through a family genealogy that was done in the early 1970's had discovered a great uncle was part of the guards, who was mortally wounded and bought back to the palace, only to die. Thanks; John Howell Jan 8, 2018 at 20:29

1 Answer 1


Nearly all of the Swiss guards were killed during the storming of the Tuilleries on 10 August 1792, or in the immediate aftermath. Nearly a hundred were publicly executed in the square of the Hotel de Ville. After the palace and assembly were overrun, the revolutionaries went hunting through the buildings room by room, killing anyone they found, porters, butlers, dish washers, everybody. The guards who survived were mostly those who were not in Paris for one reason or another.

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Monument to the Swiss Guards massacred in the French Revolution (Lucerne, Switzerland)

The remnants of the guard did not immediately reform and sought other employment. The Papal guard continued to be employed. When Louis the XVIII was restored to the throne he employed a new Swiss Guard. Eventually, the Swiss Cantons started to pass laws discouraging Swiss joining bodyguard or mercenary organizations, but nevertheless the tradition continues today. As royal bodyguards became rarer, the Swiss have joined the French Foreign Legion and other such organizations. One Austrian I know, who was of the same stamp, fought in the Serbo-Croatian War (1991-1995).

  • Did the survivors of the Swiss Guards in Normandy end up serving Great Britain? Perhaps the ending of the movie Les Années-Lumière (1989), which depicts the storming of the Tuileries, gave me the wrong impression but the Swiss Guards, at the time, seemed to have had uniforms that only required minor changes to fit British standards (as far as 1792 is concerned) Apr 5, 2016 at 3:54

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