General Philippe Romain MénardGeneral who served in Spain, Italy, and Switzerland during the French Revolution
Born: October 23, 1750
Place of Birth: Liancourt-sous-Clermont, Oise, France
Died: February 13, 1810
Place of Death: Paris, France
Arc de Triomphe: MENARD on the south pillar
The son of a farmer, Philippe Romain Ménard enlisted in the regiment of Champagne in June of 1775 and two years later he began serving with the grenadiers of his battalion. After the onset of the French Revolution, he was promoted to sergeant major in January of 1791 and then sous-lieutenant in January of 1792. Three months later Ménard was promoted to lieutenant and then in September he was promoted to capitaine. That year he served with the Army of the Alps and then the Army of the Eastern Pyrenees and in December he was wounded at the combat of Villelongue. Only a few weeks later the representatives of the people promoted Ménard to chef de brigade. In November of 1794 Ménard was promoted to général de brigade and he went on to serve at the Siege of Figuières and then the Siege of Roses.
Peace was signed with Spain in 1795 and Ménard was sent to the Army of Italy where he took command of the 2nd Brigade of Laharpe's division. In 1796 General Bonaparte arrived to take command of the Army of Italy and Ménard served throughout the campaign of that year. In April of 1796 Ménard served at Montenotte, Millesimo , the attack on the chateuau of Cossaria, and at Dego . In May he rallied the division after the untimely death of General Laharpe at Codogno. Ménard served under Augereau, Vaubois, and Masséna over the coming months and in December he was named commander at Cremona. In January of 1797 he seized Carpenedolo.
In November of 1797 Ménard took command of Masséna's division and in December he led the division into Switzerland. In January he seized Vaud and in February he was promoted to général de division. Ménard was next employed in the Army of Italy under Brune and in 1799 he joined the Army of Switzerland. That year he served at Azmooz and the attack of Reichenau. In April Ménard served as provisional commander of the army while Masséna was absent and then he returned to a divisional command upon Masséna's return. Remaining in Switzerland, Ménard took part in the Battle of Zürich in September and then he served at Andelfingen in October. He next returned to the Army of Italy in December and he served under General Suchet during the campaigns in the first half of 1800. As the war was concluded, Ménard was named commander at Genoa and then in 1801 he was named commander of the 6th military division at Besançon. In 1804 he was named a Commander of the Legion of Honor but in 1805 he was considered insane and therefore he was retired in 1806.
Updated October 2019
© Nathan D. Jensen