George Albert Bazaine-Hayter

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George Albert Bazaine-Hayter
Born December 4, 1843
Amiens, France
Died February 2, 1914(1914-02-02) (aged 70)
Allegiance Flag of France.svg France
Service/branch Infantry
Years of service 1862-1908
Rank Général de Division
Commands held 1st Infantry Brigade (Tunisia) (1899)
Governor of Nice defences and Antibes (1901–1903)
57th Infantry Brigade (Digne) (1903–1904)
10th Infantry Division (1904–1906)
Member of the Committee of Infantry Techniques and the Committee of Colonial Forces (1904–1906)
13th Army Corps, Clermont-Ferrand (1906–1907)
4th Army Corps (1908)
Awards Légion d'honneur: Chevalier (09/09/70), Officier (04/05/89), Commandeur (03/09/03), Grand Officier (30/12/08); Mexican Campaign Medal, Franco-Prussian War Medal, Tonkin Campaign Medal, Colonial Medal (Algeria)

George Albert Bazaine-Hayter (December 4, 1843, Amiens, Somme – February 2, 1914), known as Albert, was a French general, son of Pierre-Dominique (Adolphe) Bazaine and nephew of Marshal Bazaine, on whose General Staff he served in the French intervention in Mexico and during the Franco-Prussian War. He described the French position in 1870: "We had no preparation: no horses to haul the artillery reserves and the bridge equipment, no tools to dig the trenches; our machine guns arrived directly from the factories and those using them were not properly trained in their use; our artillery was inferior in number, in effectiveness and in reach, in summary, we were powerless against the Prussian artillery. Our battle formations, already old in 1859, were old-fashioned and stuck in a rut; our procedures and regulations had not been reviewed for over 30 years; our orders, brave beyond doubt, were ignorant, without doctrine and without initiative. These were the causes of our defeats, of all our defeats".[1]

Despite his familial connection with the unfortunate marshal, he had a successful military career of his own and co-wrote a number of works on infantry tactics and the use of attacking tactics in infantry doctrine. He was also an early critic of the lack of effective French military preparation to counter the increasing threat posed to France by the German Empire. He was one of the early pioneers of military aviation and a keen supporter of the Wright brothers when they visited Camp d'Auvours, Le Mans in 1908.[2] He adopted his mother's maiden name Hayter as part of his surname in recognition of the support the Hayters gave to his unfortunate uncle, Marshal Bazaine, in escaping from his prison on Île Sainte-Marguerite and in his later life in exile.


  • La Nation Armée: Leçons Professées a L'École des Hautes Études Sociales Bazaine-Hayter et al. (Paris) Felix Alcan 1909
  • L'Infanterie à la Guerre (Paris) Chapelot & Cie 1911


"Firepower does not weaken the offensive. Never forget that defensive battle will seldom bring victory. However powerful weapons become, the victory will go to the offensive which stimulates moral forces, disconcerts the enemy and deprives him of his freedom of action"[3]


  1. ^ Souvenirs 1848-1878 by Charles de Freycinet Volume 1, Chapter 3 (1912) Ch.Delagrave (4th edition)
  2. ^ Flight Log: 1908, Camp d'Auvours, Le Mans, France
  3. ^ Cited by Porch: The Road to the Marnepage 226