Friedrich Wilhelm Rustow - Encyclopedia


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FRIEDRICH WILHELM RUSTOW (1821-1878), Swiss soldier and military writer, was a Prussian by birth. He entered the service of his native country, and served for some years, until the publication of Der Deutsche Militeirstaat vor and weihrend der Revolution (Zurich, 1850) brought him official condemnation. He was sentenced by a court-martial to a long term of fortress imprisonment, but succeeded in escaping to Switzerland. He obtained military employment in the service of the Republic, and in 1857 was major on the engineer staff. Three years later he accompanied Garibaldi in the famous expedition against the two Sicilies as colonel and chief of the staff, and to him must be ascribed the victories of Capua (19th Sept. 1860) and the Volturno (1st Oct. 1860). At the end of the campaign he once more settled down at Zurich. At the outbreak of the war of 1870 he offered his services to Prussia, but was not accepted. In 1878, on the foundation of a military professorship at Zurich, Riistow applied for the post, and, on its being given to another officer, lost heart and committed suicide.

Two younger brothers, both Prussian soldiers, were also distinguished men. The elder, Alexander (1824-1866), is remembered for his work Der Kiistenkrieg (Berlin, 1848); the younger, Caesar (1826-1866), was one of the foremost experts of his time in the design and construction of military rifles, and the writer of several treatises on that subject, of which we may mention Die Kriegshandfeuerwajjen (Berlin, 1857-64). Both Alexander and Caesar fell on the field of battle in the war of 1866, at Kuniggratz and Dermbach respectively.

Amongst F. W. Rustow's works, which covered nearly every branch of the military art, a large number must be mentioned. Historical - Heerwesen and Kriegfiihrung Julius Casars (Gotha, 1855; 2nd ed., Nordhausen, 1862), Kommentar zu Napoleon III.'s Geschichte Julius Ct sars (Stuttgart, 1865-67), Geschichte des Griechischen Kriegswesens (in collaboration with Kiichly, Aarau, 1852), Militar. Biographen (David, Xenophon, Montluc) (Zurich, p858), Geschichte der Infanterie (Gotha, 1857-58; 3rd ed., 1884), Die Ersten Feldzuge Napoleons 1796-1797 (Zurich, 1867), Der Krieg von 1805 in Deutschland and Italien (Frauenfeld, 1854), Geschichte des Ungarischen Insurrektionkrieges 1848-49 (Zurich, 1860), reminiscences of 1860 in Italy (Leipzig, 1861) and monographs on the campaigns of 1848-49 in Italy (Zurich, 1849) and the Crimean War (Zurich, 18 55-5 6). Critical and General - Allgemeine Taktik (Zurich, 1858; 2nd ed., 1868), Kriegspolitik and Kriegsgebrauch (Zurich, 1876), Militar-Handwiirterbuch (Zurich, 1859), Die Feldherrnkunst des XIX Jahrhunderts (Zurich, 1857; 3rd ed., 1878-79), Der Krieg and seine Mittel (Leipzig, 1856). He also wrote Annalen des Konigreichs Italien (Zurich, 1862-63).

See Zernim, "F. W. Rustow," in Unsere Zeit. vol. 2 (Leipzig, 1882).

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