Clausewitz, Carl von

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Clausewitz, Carl von Gender: M
Carl Philipp Gottlieb von Clausewitz
born on 1 July 1780 at 15:30 (= 3:30 PM )
Place Burg b. Magdeburg, Germany, 52n16, 11e51
Timezone LMT m11e51 (is local mean time)
Data source
Quoted BC/BR
Rodden Rating AA
Collector: Scholfield
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_cancol.18.gif 10°12' s_mo.18.gif s_cancol.18.gif 00°06 Asc.s_scocol.18.gif 13°33'

Carl von Clausewitz


Prussian general and military thinker, whose work Vom Kriege (1832; On War) has become one of the most respected classics on military strategy.

Clausewitz enlisted in the Prussian army at age 12, and at age 13 he took part (and was commissioned) in the campaigns of the First Coalition against Revolutionary France. At age 21 he gained admission into the Institute for Young Officers in Berlin.

After finishing first in his class, Clausewitz was on the road leading to the centre of the political and military events during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars, the reform of the Prussian army that followed Prussia’s defeat, and the restoration of European monarchies following the defeat of Napoleon.

In 1804 Clausewitz was appointed adjutant to Prince August Ferdinand of Prussia. In this capacity, he took part in the Battle of Jena-Auerstädt (1806). In the wake of Prussia’s catastrophic defeat by Napoleon, he and the prince fell into French captivity.

After their release at the end of 1807, Clausewitz struggled to reform the Prussian army.

On December 10, 1810 Clausewitz married Countess Marie von Bruhl, with whom he formed a very close but childless union.

In the war ministry that was formed Clausewitz served as his mentor’s assistant and was then simultaneously appointed a major in the general staff, instructor at the new Officers’ Academy, and military tutor to the Prussian crown prince. In 1812, when Prussia was forced to join Napoleon’s invasion of Russia, Clausewitz resigned his commission and joined the Russian service. Clausewitz took part in the final campaigns that brought down Napoleon in 1813–15. During the Waterloo campaign, he served as chief of staff to one of the four Prussian army corps.

With the coming of peace Clausewitz increasingly concentrated on his intellectual interests. He had been thinking and writing on war and its theory since his days in the Institute for Young Officers. Appointed chief of staff to the Prussian army that prepared for intervention against the Polish revolt of 1831, Clausewitz died of cholera on 16 November 1831, Breslau, Silesia (now Wrocław, Poland).

His unfinished work, together with his historical studies, was posthumously published by his widow.

Link to Wikipedia biography


Source Notes

Arno Müller, vol 2, states 1 June. However, as pointed out by atr, it is explained on German Wikipedia that his father faked records to enter his son into the military. The minimum age was 12 years; decisive was the age at 1 June in the year of admission.

Sy Scholfield quotes church record for 1 July in the biography, "Carl von Clausewitz: Lebensbild eines patriotischen Militars und fortschrittlichen Militärtheoretikers" by Gerhard Förster (Militärverlag der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik, 1983), p. 1797: "Danach wurde Carl Philipp Gottlieb, Sohn des Clausewitz, Friedrich Gabriel, am 1. Juli 1780 abends ½ 4 Uhr geboren, getauft am 9. desselben Monats. Da das Kirchenregister ordentlich geführt wurde, ist es durchaus möglich, daß dieses Geburtsdatum stimmt." [Translation: Carl Philipp Gottlieb, son of Frederick Gabriel Clausewitz, was born at 3:30pm on July 1, 1780, baptized on the 9th of the same month. Since the church register was properly conducted, it is quite possible that this birth is correct."]


  • Traits : Personality : Courageous
  • Vocation : Military : Military career
  • Vocation : Writers : Other Writers (history of war)
  • Notable : Famous : Historic figure
  • Notable : Famous : Top 5% of Profession