Oldest commander to win a battle

Jan 2016
471
Macedonia
Aurangzeb AFAIK kept taking part in expeditions himself up to his death (89 years old) and as Emperor he was - at least - the titular commander-in-chief, but I don't know if he also exercise actual personal command in the battles or had left that to Zulfikar Khan.
 

Lord Oda Nobunaga

Ad Honorem
Jan 2015
5,633
Ontario, Canada
Ferdinand Foch was 63, Joseph Joffre was 62 and Philippe Petain was 58 in 1914. Paul von Hindenburg was 67 when WW1 started. Colmar von der Goltz was 72 when he won at Kut in 1915.
Tilly died in the field during the Thirty Years War at the age of 73.
When Suleiman's army took Szigetvar he was 71, and died during the siege.
Blucher was 73 in 1815, where as Kutuzov was 67 when he died in 1813.
When Cao Cao's army defeated Guan Yu in 219, he was about 64. When Liu Bei's army got stomped in 222 he was 61 years old. When Sima Yi put down Wang Ling's rebellion, he was about 72. Huang Zhong was was at least 70 (assuming he was born in 150, if not some time in the 140's) when he defeated and killed Xiahou Yuan.

Those are the ones which come to mind.
 
Nov 2013
586
Kingdom of Sweden
Off the top of my head, I have to name Field Marshal Erik Dahlbergh, who fought his last battle at the venerable age of 76.
Though considered a field marshal in name only at the onset of the Great Northern War due to his old age and rapidly declining health, count Dahlbergh nevertheless took direct command of the defense of Livland and concluded his career with arguably his greatest military performances yet. He defended the city of Riga twice against overwhelming Saxon forces, and was instrumental in Karl XII's legendary crossing of the Düna. His final independent command was the second siege of Riga, where he stubbornly defended the city against the Saxon royal army numbering 18,000 men, himself commanding only a depleted garrison of less than three thousand. After that victory, he continued to direct the defense of Livland for another year and a half from the city he had saved not once but twice, only resigning when he believed the province secure. He died from old age only nine months after.
 
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Feb 2019
928
Serbia
Baron Melas was 71 at the Battle of Marengo, a victory at first but later a defeat. But one source claimed he was 89.
Can Marengo count? Melas did drive Napoleon back for the first part of the battle but that doesn't really constitute a victory as a whole, the Austrians lost the battle in the end and suffered a heavy defeat, I don't think that winning a part of a battle should count as a full victory. What is that ''one source'' that claims Melas was 89?

Melas did participate in some victorious battles while he was with Suvorov during the Swiss Expedition in 1799 though.
 

MAGolding

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
2,966
Chalfont, Pennsylvania
Can Marengo count? Melas did drive Napoleon back for the first part of the battle but that doesn't really constitute a victory as a whole, the Austrians lost the battle in the end and suffered a heavy defeat, I don't think that winning a part of a battle should count as a full victory. What is that ''one source'' that claims Melas was 89?

Melas did participate in some victorious battles while he was with Suvorov during the Swiss Expedition in 1799 though.
The source that said that Melas was 89 at the Battle of Marengo was a book about medical oddities, people who were usual. I guess that it had a section on achievements at unusually old ages. If I remember correctly it seemed more accurate in general than many popular books. So there should be at least one earlier source claiming that Melas was 89 at the Battle of Marengo, despite the fact that other sources give Melas a more reasonable birth date of 12 May 1729. Michael von Melas - Wikipedia

As I remember, that book included an account of a two headed man exhibited in Paris in the early 17th century. It said that he was convicted of murder but but not executed because the authorities were uncertain whether both heads were equally guilty.
 
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Sep 2013
323
SouthWest USA
I wonder how many of those older generals mentioned above were actually at the front with his troops during battle.

The Huguenot General Schomberg is one example of this leadership. A former Marshall of France, Schomberg died in the service of English King William III during the Battle of the Boyne (which they won) in 1690.

He was a few months shy of 75 when he died in battle.

At the Battle of the Boyne (1 July 1690), Schomberg gave his opinion against the determination of William to cross the river in face of the opposing army. After riding through the river to rally his men, he was wounded twice in the head by sabre cuts, and was shot in the neck by Cahir O'Toole of Ballyhubbock and instantly killed


guy also known as gaius
 
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