General Albert Louis Valentin Taviel

Artillery officer who served in Spain and Germany

Born: June 17, 1767

Place of Birth: Saint-Omer, Pas-de-Calais, France

Died: November 17, 1831

Place of Death: Paris, France

Arc de Triomphe: TAVIEL on the west pillar


The son of an artillery captain, Albert Louis Valentin enrolled in the artillery school of Metz in 1783. The following year he was commissioned as a lieutenant in the artillery regiment of Grenoble. Once the Revolution was underway, in August of 1791 Taviel was promoted to capitaine in the 4th Artillery and then in 1792 he served in the Army of the Alps. In 1793 he served at Calvi and then in January of 1794 he was promoted to chef de bataillon and named deputy director of artillery at Bastia. Later that year Taviel joined the Army of the North and he commanded the artillery at the sieges of Crévecoeur and Bois-le-Duc. Afterwards, he was promoted to chef de brigade. In 1795 Taviel was named director of artillery at Saint-Omer and then in 1796 and 1797 he served in the Army of the Rhine and Moselle. In 1798 he took command of the artillery in Switzerland and he went on to participate in the action of Coire and the Battle of Feldkirch. Taviel next served with the Army of the Danube and then in Holland. In May of 1800 he joined the Army of the Reserve to serve with the siege park. Later Taviel was named a member of the commission of demolition of places of Piedmont and he contributed to the action at Peschiera.

In 1801 Taviel returned to Saint-Omer and in 1803 he was named directory of the artillery park of the camp of Saint-Omer. In 1805 he was promoted to général de brigade and when the army marched out to confront the Third Coalition Taviel stayed behind to command the artillery of the Army of the Coasts under Marshal Brune. In 1807 he was assigned to command the artillery of the I Corps of Observation of the Gironde under General Junot and he took part in the events in Portugal. In 1808 Taviel fought at the Battle of Vimeiro and then in 1809 he took command of the artillery of VII Corps in Spain. That year he also served at the Siege of Girona and then in 1810 he was named inspector general of artillery. In 1811 Taviel was named a Baron of the Empire, promoted to général de division, and he directed the siege of the fort of Figuières. That November he was recalled to France.

In August of 1812 Taviel took command of the artillery of X Corps under General Rapp at Danzig. In 1813 he took command of the artillery of Bertrand's IV Corps and he served at Lützen, Bautzen, and Leipzig . For the defense of France of 1814, Taviel commanded the artillery at Metz. After Napoleon's abdication and the Bourbon Restoration, Taviel was named a Knight of Saint Louis and Grand Officer of the Legion of Honor. He remained employed by the Bourbons but willingly served Napoleon upon Napoleon's return from exile in 1815. Napoleon placed Taviel in charge of the artillery of the Corps of Observation of Jura under General Lecourbe and Taviel took part in the defense of Belfort. Afterwards, he retired but he returned to service in 1817.


Updated April 2018

© Nathan D. Jensen