1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Gribeauval, Jean Baptiste de

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GRIBEAUVAL, JEAN BAPTISTE DE (1715–1789), French artillery general, was the son of a magistrate of Amiens and was born there on the 15th of September 1715. He entered the French royal artillery in 1732 as a volunteer, and became an officer in 1735. For nearly twenty years regimental duty and scientific work occupied him, and in 1752 he became captain of a company of miners. A few years later he was employed in a military mission in Prussia. In 1757, being then a lieutenant-colonel, he was lent to the Austrian army on the outbreak of the Seven Years’ War, and served as a general officer of artillery. The siege of Glatz and the defence of Schweidnitz were his principal exploits. The empress Maria Theresa rewarded him for his work with the rank of lieutenant field-marshal and the cross of the Maria Theresa order. On his return to France he was made maréchal de camp, in 1764 inspector of artillery, and in 1765 lieutenant-general and commander of the order of St Louis. For some years after this he was in disfavour at court, and he became first inspector of artillery only in 1776, in which year also he received the grand cross of the St Louis order. He was now able to carry out the reforms in the artillery arm which are his chief title to fame. See Artillery; and for full details Gribeauval’s own Table des constructions des principaux attirails de l’artillerie . . . de M. de Gribeauval, and the règlement for the French artillery issued in 1776. He died in 1789.

See Puységur in Journal de Paris, supplement of the 8th of July 1789; Chevalier de Passac, Précis sur M. de Gribeauval (Paris, 1816); Veyrines, Gribeauval (Paris, 1889), and Hennébert, Gribeauval, lieutenant-général des armées du roy (Paris, 1896).