General Jean-Dominique, Comte Compans, 1769-1845

General Jean-Dominique, comte Compans (1769-1845) was a French general best known for his performance during the invasion of Russia in 1812.

Compans's family had originally intended that he should become a priest, but the French Revolution changed that, and in 1791 he joined the army. He served at the Siege of Toulon (7 September-19 December 1793). He then went to the Army of Italy, and by 1799 was given command of a brigade.

In 1805 he was Lannes' chief of staff, and he was wounded at Austerliz. In 1806 he was promoted to general de brigade. In 1809 he was made a Count of the Empire.

In 1812 Compans commanded the 5th Division, I Corps. He played a major part in the French victory at Shervardino (5 September 1812), helping capture and hold a Russian redoubt that had been built to the west of their main line at Borodino. At Borodino itself (7 September 1812) he was leading the first attack by I Corps when he was shot in the shoulder and knocked out of the battle.

Compans fought in 1813 campaign in Germany. He fought at Möckern (5 April 1813) where he was wounded, Lützen (2 May 1813) and Leipzig (16-19 October 1813).

Compans accepted the first Bourbon restoration, but joined Napoleon on his return in 1815. He was offered a command in the army that fought at Waterloo but turned it down.

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (22 May 2014), General Jean-Dominique, Comte Compans, 1769-1845 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/people_compans.html

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