Gendarmerie (ETW Unit)
These light horsemen are often little more than mounted militia, but with a greater social standing. Cavalry always see themselves as better than foot soldiers, but in this case, it may be true. It is, after all, not cheap to purchase and maintain a decent horse, and this means that men with financial standing make up the majority of recruits.
They are, however, not as disciplined as regular cavalry, simply because they do not have the time or available resources to learn the craft of war as thoroughly. They are, however, extremely useful in policing the rougher, lower orders and keeping the existing social structure intact.
Historically, there are many examples of yeomanry or gendarmes turning on their own citizenry with surprising and horrific violence. They were widely used against the anti-factory Luddites in northern England and, most infamously, were responsible for the Peterloo Massacre in 1819, when the Manchester and Salford Yeomanry charged a mostly peaceful, but excited crowd, and cut down many unarmed protesters.
Gendarmerie are a light cavalry unit available only to the Central European powers. Useful early on as substitutes for the better suited light and heavy cavalry to come, Gendarmerie retain their usefulness in the late game for keeping the order in turbulent regions as they receive a bonus to repression. Should a rebellion occur, they are a good complement to militia forces in fighting, routing, and destroying rebel mobs.
However, Gendarmerie have a very weak charge bonus and not much melee skill or defense. They are only really suited to attacking weaker enemies, or enemies that are just about to break.