‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 11): Reichsarmee on Parade!

The long and winding road has finally reached its destination!  As discussed in Part 10 of this series, my Reichsarmee is now FINISHED! 🙂  As the first unit was painted in or around 1997, it took me around 25 years, but in my defence, I did do other things in the meantime as well.

In terms of units and models painted, my Reichsarmee (including the attached Imperial auxiliary units) works out as 26 infantry battalions (12 figs), 15 large infantry battalions (16 figs), 4 cavalry regiments (12 figs), 1 large cavalry regiment (16 figs), 2 small cavalry regiments (6 figs), 10 batteries (1 gun & 4 crew) and 12 generals, for a grand total of 592 foot, 88 horse and 10 guns.  I’ve not counted the Austrian elements, as they do double duty with my Austrian army.

If I add the Saxon, Bavarian and Württemberg Auxiliary Corps painted during this period, that’s another 4 cavalry regiments, 20 infantry battalions and 3 generals, or 240 foot figures and 51 horse…  And I’ve run out of steel toolboxes in which to keep all this stuff…

So here’s the Grand Imperial Parade, followed by each Imperial Circle contingent on parade.  To avoid repeating myself, I won’t go into detail regarding uniforms and organisation.  Instead, I’ll link each unit name back to the page where they were featured.  Note however, that I buggered up the photos of the Swabian and Franconian contingents, so had to re-shoot those, hence the delay.


The Electoral Rhenish District (Kurrheinischen Kreis)

From left to right below, we have the ‘Kurtrier’ Regiment, the Köln ‘Nothaft’ and ‘Wildenstein’ Regiments, the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment and the Pfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment.  To the rear are the ‘Kurpfalz’ Cuirassiers and the massed Kurrhein grenadier companies.  In front is some artillery from Trier and Pfalz.


The Swabian District (Schwäbischen Kreis)

From left to right below are the ‘Fürstenberg/Roth’ Regiment, the ‘Alt-Württemberg’ Regiment, the ‘Baden-Durlach’ Regiment and the ‘Baden-Baden’ Regiment.  At the rear are the ‘Hohenzollern’ Cuirassiers and the ‘Württemberg Dragoons, while in front is the Swabian District Artillery Corps.  I forgot to include the Swabian grenadiers when setting up this shot!


The Franconian District (Fränkischen Kreis)

From left to right below we have the ‘Varell’ Regiment, the ‘Cronegk’ Regiment and the ‘Ferntheil/Hohenlohe’ Regiment.  At the back are the ‘Bayreuth’ Cuirassiers and the ‘Ansbach’ Dragoons.  At the front is the Franconian District Artillery Corps.  Again, I forgot to include the massed Franconian grenadier companies.


The Upper Rhenish District (Oberrheinischen Kreis)

Moving to the smaller contingents; here from left to right we have the ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Regiment and the Hessen-Darmstädt ‘Prinz Georg’ Regiment, with the massed grenadiers to the rear.  In front is the District Artillery Corps.  As mentioned in Part 10, I decided not to do the district’s ‘Nassau-Weiburg’ Regiment as a. they didn’t do any fighting and b. there was no flag information at the time (since corrected by Frédéric Aubert).


Upper Saxon District (Obersachsischen-Kreis)

As mentioned in earlier articles, the Upper Saxon District had very few resources to draw upon, thanks to the Prussian occupation of Saxony and the district’s contingent was therefore padded out at Austrian expense, with regiments from the Army of Pfalz.  In the front rank is the 2nd Battalion of the Pfalz ‘Garde zu Fuss’ Regiment, while at the rear (in red coats) is the Pfalz Leib-Dragoner-Regiment ‘Kurfürstin’.  alongside them (in white coats) is the tiny ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoon Regiment, which was actually raised in the district.  As mentioned in Part 10, I decided not to do the ‘Ernestinisch-Sachsen’ Infantry Regiment due to the lack of flag information and the fact that they only fought in one small engagement.


The Bavarian District (Kurbayernischen Kreis)

In the front rank below is the ‘Kurbayern’ Regiment and a battery of Bavarian artillery.  At the rear is the ‘Salzburg’ Regiment and the massed grenadiers.


Imperial Auxiliary Troops

Here are the three infantry regiments initially raised at Austrian expense to fight with the Austrian Army, but who were then assigned as part of the Austrian contribution to the Reichsarmee.  From left to right, these are the ‘Mainz-Lamberg’ Regiment, the ‘Blau-Würzburg’ Regiment and the ‘Rot-Würzburg’ Regiment.  At the rear are the massed grenadier companies.  They were joined by the single-battalion ‘Anhalt-Zerbst’ Regiment in 1762, but that unit saw very little (if any) action, so I decided not to include it (it was uniformed very similarly to the ‘Rot-Würzburg’ Regiment (flags unknown).  

So that’s it for the Reichsarmee!  They’ve already fought one battle (the Combat of Strehla)  en masse, but there are plenty more to come!

My apologies for the slow pace of the blog over the last two months.  This does tend to happen during the summer and this summer has been ludicrously busy for me.  The ‘good’ news is that the weather here in Wales has turned more ‘typical’ for the time of year and provided that the local internet isn’t knocked out by flooding (as per the last two summers), the pace should pick up during August, with those long-awaited game reports and some new units such as these…

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Seven Years War Minor German States, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 13 Comments

‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 10): The Very Last Reichsarmee Units!

Well all good things (and tedious blog articles) must come to an end… I’ve finally painted my last unit for the Reichsarmee.  I will post a Grand Imperial Parade in Part 11, showing the Reichsarmee as a whole and the grouped district contingents en masse, but for now here are the last units to be painted.

Franconian District (Fränkischen Kreis

Grenadier, Cronegk IR (Becher)

Above:  The Franconian ‘Cronegk’ Infantry Regiment.  Franconia raised three infantry regiments for the Reichsarmee, named ‘Ferntheil’, ‘Varell’ and ‘Cronegk’ with all three being organised identically, comprising two six-company battalions, two detached grenadier companies and an artillery detachment.  At full strength, each battalion numbered almost 1,000 men and rarely went much below 750 men, so they are represented in Tricorn as ‘Large’ units of 16 figures.

I painted the other two Franconian regiments in 1997 and they were therefore among the very first Reichsarmee units to be painted, though this regiment for some reason languished in the Lead Dungeon for over a quarter of a century and became the LAST Reichsarmee regiment to be painted!  🙂  I covered the other two regiments in Part 2.

Above:  The Franconian ‘Cronegk’ Infantry Regiment.  Like many other Reichsarmee units, the three Franconian regiments were raised from a multitude of tiny contingents.  The units raised in this manner were invariably bad and the Franconian regiments were no exception, being rated by the French Marshal Soubise as ‘poor’ and ‘too Prussian in their ways’.  It certainly didn’t help that the regiments were riven by religious disputes, including the ridiculous argument over the regimental colours, as described in Part 2.

Above:  The Franconian ‘Cronegk’ Infantry Regiment wore a dark blue coat cut in Prussian style, with white lapels, collar, shoulder-strap, (Swedish) cuffs and tail-turnbacks.  Buttons were brass.  Smallclothes and belts were white.  Gaiters and neck-stocks were black.  The hats were decorated with white lace and white-over-blue-over-white pompoms.  Officers wore gold hat-lace and aiguillette, with a gorget and silver waist-sash, woven through with black and red.  The only adornment to drummers’ uniforms was a white ‘swallow’s nest’ on each shoulder.

Above:  The Franconian ‘Cronegk’ Infantry Regiment.  As mentioned above, the tail-turnbacks were coloured white, though some sources show them as red.  This confusion seems to stem from a later uniform-change, first depicted in 1782, by which time the tail-turnbacks of all three Franconian regiments had changed to Prussian-style red.  The general consensus is that they were still white during the SYW and were depicted as such in the Becher Manuscript, as shown in the illustration of a grenadier of the regiment shown above (and those of the ‘Varell’ Regiment were still yellow, again matching the facing colour).

For the Franconians I used Old Glory 15s Prussian infantry figures.  The flags were taken from a Reichsarmee flag-sheet I bought during the 1990s from Andy Grubb, along with sheets of SYW Bavarian and Swedish flags.  They were the first laser-printed flags I’d ever seen and the colours are still as bright and vibrant as they were 25+ years ago, so I used these old flags, despite Not By Appointment recently releasing the Franconian flags.

Above:  The Franconian District Artillery Corps.  In addition to providing the bulk of the heavy artillery and gunners to the Reichsreserveartillerie (covered in Part 2), the Circle of Franconia also equipped its three infantry regiments with an artillery detachment, each of four 3pdr guns.  I did cover the Franconian District Artillery in Part 2, but the information provided there proved not to be correct, being based on the Kronoskaf description, which describes an identical uniform to that of the Reichsreserveartillerie (blue coat and smallclothes with red lapels, collar, cuffs, turnbacks and shoulder-strap), except with yellow hat-lace and buttons instead of white (confusingly, the Kronoskaf article shows white hat-lace in its illustration, but says yellow in the text).

Above:  This battery of the Franconian District Artillery Corps is therefore based on the description provided by Frédéric Aubert, who asserts that Franconian gunners were still wearing red smallclothes during the SYW and that the blue smallclothes shown in Kronoskaf did not appear until sometime around 1781 (being illustrated in 1782).  Kronoskaf does describe red smallclothes being worn by Franconian artillery officers.

One mistake I made here however, is that the cord worn over the left shoulder and supporting the gunners’ tool pouch should be twisted cords of red, white and black.  I just painted them as buff-coloured ropes and will therefore have to go back and correct this.

Above:  The Franconian District Artillery Corps was equipped with guns from the Nuremberg Arsenal, which also supplied the bulk of the guns for the Reichsreserveartillerie.  The heavy Nuremberg guns supplied to the Reichsreserveartillerie are known to have been carried on red carriages, so I’ve also painted this gun-carriage red.

These are Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures.

The Reichsarmee Grenadier Corps

As with all Austro-Imperial grenadier companies, the grenadier companies of the Reichsarmee existed as ‘semi-detached’ units, usually accompanying their parent regiment within the same corps, but not serving alongside them in battle.  Instead, they were used for a variety of tasks, mainly guarding baggage and the artillery-train.  Hence they were well to the rear during the Battle of Rossbach.

As the war went on and in common with the Austrian grenadiers, they were increasingly used as an elite corps, being used for critical assault tasks and as a tactical reserve to defend key points and react to enemy breakthroughs.  However, unlike the Prussian grenadiers, who were formed into semi-permanent battalions at the commencement of hostilities, the Austro-Imperial grenadier battalions were always ad hoc affairs, being grouped together on or very close to the day of battle.

I did originally organise my Reichsarmee grenadier companies as separate bases, so they could be grouped together and rearranged for particular scenarios, but I’m increasingly moving away from separate bases, so instead decided to base them as single-base battalions, for the most part grouped by Imperial Circle.  They were rarely grouped in this manner, but it suits me to do so.  In any case, there is precious little information on how grenadier battalions were organised; at the very most we get a vague description, such as a list of x grenadier companies present, organised into y battalions.  They might also be grouped with Austrian line infantry or Grenzer grenadier companies.

Above:  Franconian Grenadiers.  The three Franconian infantry regiments each provided two grenadier companies.  I use two roughly figures per company, so each regiment is represented by four figures.

Above:  Franconian Grenadiers.  From left to right, the three Franconian regiments represented here are ‘Ferntheil‘ (red facings), ‘Varell‘ (yellow facings) and ‘Cronegk‘ (white facings.  I covered the first two regiments in Part 2 and the ‘Cronegk’ Regiment is detailed above.

Above:  Franconian Grenadiers.  While the majority of Franconian grenadiers wore Austrian-style fur caps, some contingents equipped their grenadiers with Prussian-style mitre caps.  There is some disagreement among sources as to how many contingents were still wearing mitre caps during the SYW, but all seem to agree that the Bayreuth Company of the ‘Varell’ Regiment wore mitre caps, while the Eichstädt Company of the same regiment wore fur caps.  As for the rest, the Anspach contingents of the ‘Cronegk’ and ‘Ferntheil’ Regiments may also have worn mitre caps. I’ve therefore given mitre caps to half of the ‘Varell’ Regiment’s grenadiers and also arbitrarily given them to half of the ‘Ferntheil’ Regiment’s grenadiers.

Above: Franconian Grenadiers.  The fur caps worn by Franconian grenadiers were all made of dark brown fur, with brass front-plates and bags in the facing colour, piped blue for the ‘Cronegk’ Regiment and white for the other two.  The mitre caps had a facing-coloured front-piece, decorated with a brass crest, bearing a blue enamel disc.  The head-band was also facing-coloured and decorated with brass grenades.  The bag was blue for the ‘Fertheil’ and ‘Cronegk’ Regiments and red for the ‘Varell’ Regiment.  Piping and pompoms were white for all three regiments.

Above:  Kurrhein (Electoral Rhine) Grenadiers.  Four of the five Electoral Rhenish infantry regiments supplied six grenadier companies between them; the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment and Kurpfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment each supplied two companies, while the Kurköln ‘Nothaft’ Regiment and Kurköln ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment supplied one company apiece.  The ‘Kurtrier’ Regiment did not contribute any grenadier companies.

Above:  Kurrhein Grenadiers.  The regimental contingents from left to right are: the two Kurköln regiments (red facings), the Kurmainz Regiment (green facings) and the Kurpfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment (white facings).  I detailed the uniforms of all these Kurrhein contingents in Part 8.

Above:  Kurrhein Grenadiers.  All Kurrhein grenadier companies wore Austrian-style fur caps of dark brown/black fur with a plate at the front and a hanging bag at the rear.  The metal of the plate matched the regimental button-colour, which was certainly brass for the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment, though the other regiments are the source of some debate.  The Kurpfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment is variously described as yellow or white metal and I’ve gone with white metal.  As for the two Kurköln regiments, one had white metal and the other yellow, but nobody can agree which regiment was which (Kronoskaf also says that the plate was brass for both regiments)!

Above:  Kurrhein Grenadiers.  The colour of the bags on the back of the grenadier caps matched the regimental facing-colour.  The piping and tassel was blue for the Kurpfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment, yellow (or possibly a darker shade of green) for the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment and white for both Kurköln regiments.

Above:  Swabian Grenadiers.  The four Swabian infantry regiments; ‘Baden-Baden‘, ‘Alt-Württemberg‘, ‘Baden-Durlach‘ and ‘Fürstenberg‘ each contributed two grenadier companies to the Reichsarmee.  However, I haven’t included the ‘Fürstenberg’ Regiment’s grenadiers here, as I included them as part of the parent regiment, which I covered in Part 2 (pictured below).

Above:  Swabian Grenadiers.  From left to right, the regiments represented here are the ‘Baden-Baden’ Regiment (white facings), the ‘Alt-Württemberg’ Regiment (yellow facings) and the ‘Baden-Durlach’ Regiment (red facings).  I covered their parent regiments in Part 4.

Grenadier, Baden-Durlach IR (Knötel)

Above:  Swabian Grenadiers.  Note that there is some disagreement between sources as to the uniform of the ‘Baden-Durlach’ Regiment’s grenadier companies.  Some sources (including Richard Knötel) suggest that the regiment’s grenadiers wore a different uniform to that of the parent regiment, adding tasseled lace buttonholes to the coat and changing the colour of the smallclothes from white to straw.  Richard Knötel’s interpretation is shown on the right. Kronoskaf also went along with this (hence why I painted it!), but has since deleted that description.  The Becher Manuscript shows the same uniform as the parent regiment; plain red facings without lace and white smallclothes.

It seems probable that the Knötel version of the uniform was worn by the ENTIRE regiment at a later date, perhaps in the 1780s or 90s.  Ah well, I’m not repainting them now… 🙂

Grenadier, Baden-Baden IR (Becher)

Above: Swabian Grenadiers.  The ‘Baden-Baden’ Regiment’s grenadiers wore Austrian-style dark brown fur caps, while the ‘Baden-Durlach’ and ‘Alt-Württemberg’ Regiments wore Prussian-style mitre caps.  Once again, there is some disagreement regarding the details.  I went along with the version of the ‘Baden-Baden’ Regiment’s cap shown by Kronoskaf and Frédéric Aubert, which has a brass front-plate and a blue bag with white piping and tassel.  However, the Becher Manuscript version (pictured on the right) shows no front-plate and has a white bag with blue piping and white tassel.

Sources are largely in agreement regarding the other two regiments; The ‘Alt-Württemberg’ Regiment’s cap had a brass front-plate, a yellow (or possibly brass) band with brass grenade badges, a yellow bag, red piping (Kronoskaf says yellow piping) and a yellow pompom with black centre.  The ‘Baden-Durlach’ Regiment’s cap had a brass front, red band with brass grenades, blue bag, white piping and a red pompom (though Knötel shows no pompom).

Above:  Kurbayern, Oberrhein & Obersachsen Grenadiers.  This battalion is comprised of the various odds & sods making up the remainder of my Reichsarmee.  These were for the most part painted in the 1990s, when my sources were limited to just the (excellent) Pengel & Hurt booklets.  Some of the details have since been challenged by more recent research, but I’ve left them largely unaltered.

Above:  Kurbayern, Oberrhein & Obersachsen Grenadiers.  From left to right, these grenadier companies are from the ‘Kurbayern‘ Regiment (made up of one grenadier company each from the Bavarian ‘Holnstein‘ and ‘Pechmann‘ Regiments), the ‘Salzburg‘ Regiment, the Hessen-Darmstädt ‘Prinz Georg’ Regiment and the Kurpfalz ‘Garde zu Fuss‘ Regiment.  I covered most of these regiments in Part 2 and the Pfalz ‘Garde zu Fuss’ in Part 4.  The ‘Kurbayern’ Regiment contributed two grenadier companies (i.e. one company from each of its Bavarian parent regiments) regiments and the remainder each contributed a single grenadier company to the Reichsarmee.  I must confess however, that I’ve included a double-helping of Hessen-Darmstädt grenadiers, as I rather like them! 🙂

Above:  Kurbayern, Oberrhein & Obersachsen Grenadiers.  While most of these contingents wore Austrian-style fur caps, the Hessen-Darmstädt grenadiers wore Prussian-style mitre caps.  It should be noted that when I painted these, Pengel & Hurt specified that the Salzburg grenadier caps were made of ‘brown fur’, so I painted them that horrible ginger colour.  I know now that virtually all fur grenadier caps were made of ‘brown’ fur and it was usually a dark brown, bordering on black, so they should probably all be roughly the same colour.

As for the Hessian mitre caps, I’ve seen at least five different versions of the front-plate.  This is the version shown in Pengel & Hurt; namely a white metal plate with a blue enameled oval, bearing the red & white striped lion-rampant of Hesse.  Other versions have a pierced front-plate, revealing white or blue cloth backing and different (or no) enameled decoration.

Note also that recent research has revealed that the two Bavarian contingents making up the ‘Kurbayern’ Regiment adopted the same facing-colour of ‘light red’ (best described as ‘old rose’), which was the facing colour of the ‘Holnstein’ Regiment, though the men from the ‘Pechmann’ Regiment retained their straw tail-turnbacks.  Pengel & Hurt got themselves (and me!) very confused here, so the ‘Holnstein’ contingent is shown in poppy red with straw turnbacks (this should all be light red), while the ‘Pechmann’ contingent is shown in straw facings (they should have light red lapels and cuffs).

Above:  Kurbayern, Oberrhein & Obersachsen Grenadiers.  From right to left, the cap-bags of the ‘Holnstein’ contingent of the ‘Kurbayern’ Regiment should have light red bags, piped white, not the poppy red piped yellow shown here.  The straw bags with white piping of the ‘Pechmann’ contingent may well be correct, or they may also have adopted light red (sources are split).  The ‘Salzburg’ Regiment’s bags are just described as ‘red’, though they may have had white piping.  All sources agree that the Hessian mitre caps had white bands, grenade badges in brass or white metal, blue bag, white piping and white pompoms.  The Kurpfalz ‘Garde zu Fuss’ had red bags with white piping.

Above:  Imperial Auxiliary Grenadiers.  As discussed in Part 1, a number of Imperial regiments were hired to serve with the Austrian army and eventually ended up fighting as part of the Austrian contribution to the Reichsarmee.  Chief among these were three excellent infantry regiments; the ‘Mainz’, ‘Mainz-Lamberg’ or ‘Lamberg’ Regiment, the ‘Rot-Würzburg‘ Regiment and the ‘Blau-Würzburg‘ Regiment.  Each regiment contributed two grenadier companies.  They probably never served together in a combined battalion like this, but it appealed to me. 🙂

Above:  Imperial Auxiliary Grenadiers.  From left to right, these are the grenadier companies of the ‘Mainz-Lamberg’, ‘Blau-Würzburg’ and ‘Rot-Würzburg’ Regiments.  I covered the ‘Rot-Würzburg’ Regiment in Part 1, the ‘Mainz-Lamberg’ Regiment in Part 5 and the ‘Blau-Würzburg’ Regiment in Part 7.  The uniforms were all very Austrian in style and this battalion could happily be used as a stand-in Austrian grenadier battalion.

Above:  Imperial Auxiliary Grenadiers.  All three regiments wore Austrian-style fur caps of dark brown fur, with white metal front-plates.

Above:  Imperial Auxiliary Grenadiers. The cap-bags of all three regiments matched the facing colour and all had white piping and tassels.

The Reichsarmee ‘Also-Rans’

I must confess that there are still a very few Reichsarmee units left that I haven’t painted, so I’ll list them here.  They amount to around six battalions, plus a grenadier battalion and a light battery.  I may decide to paint them ‘to complete the set’ sometime in the future, but I won’t be doing them any time soon!

Nassau-Weiburg IR (Knötel)

The Upper-Rhenish ‘Nassau-Weiburg’ Regiment theoretically consisted of two battalions and two grenadier companies, but the the regiment was very weak, amounting to little more than a single battalion in terms of manpower.  In 1759 one battalion was captured as part of the surrendered garrison of Leipzig and by 1761 the regiment was fielded as a single battalion with no grenadiers.  They also never fought at any significant engagements, so I consequently decided not to do them.  The lack of flag information was also a factor, though that’s now been corrected, as Frédéric Aubert discovered surviving examples and has included them in his Ad Hoc Editions plates and flag-sheets.  The regiment wore blue coats with white facings.

The Upper-Saxon ‘Ernestinisch-Sachsen’ Regiment consisted of two battalions and two grenadier companies assembled from five Saxon duchies and did actually fight at one battle; the Combat of Zinna.  I probably would have painted this regiment, as it did fight and it had an array of different uniforms, so would look interesting on the table; the 1st Battalion all wore the same uniform of blue coats with red facings, though the 2nd Battalion had four different uniforms with a mixture of blue and white coats and red and yellow facings.  The grenadiers don’t seem to have been sent to war (perhaps used as a depot or garrison?).

However, aside from some very speculative designs that didn’t appeal to me, there was absolutely no information on the regiment’s flags.  Nevertheless, Frédéric has once again produced some lovely and very plausible speculative flag designs that look ‘right’, so they may yet appear in my Reichsarmee.

Münster ‘Elverfeldt’ or ‘Nagel’ IR (Knötel)

As for the Lower-Rhenish-Westphalian Circle; the Bishopric of Münster raised two regiments; the ‘Elverfeldt’ Regiment and the ‘Nagel’ Regiment which each consisted of a single battalion, grenadier company and section of 2x 4pdr battalion guns.  Both were rated as ‘good’ by Soubise.  However, they remained on garrison duty throughout the war and only fought in one very minor engagement against Ferdinand of Brunswick’s western allied army, so I decided not to do them.

Their uniforms and flags are fairly well-documented, with both regiments wearing blue coats.  Most sources say that the ‘Elverfeldt’ Regiment had white facings and the ‘Nagel’ Regiment had red facings, though Frédéric insists that it was the other way round.  They each had a grenadier company wearing mitre caps and the flags were very pretty, having a Bavarian-style blue & white lozengy field with a wreathed cross of the Teutonic Order.  So even though they’re fairly redundant from a historical refight point of view, these regiments are very pretty…  It’s so tempting…

The Münster Artillery Corps was quite strong and supplied the regimental artillery to the three Lower-Rhenish-Westphalian Regiments, in addition to the Electoral Rhenish Kurköln ‘Nothaft’ and ‘Wildenstein’ Regiments.  I’ve already painted the Kurköln regiments (shown in Part 8), so I should also perhaps paint some of these gunners.  The Münster Artillery Corps wore blue coats with red facings (including lapels) and white smallclothes.

Paderborn ‘Mengerson’ IR (Knötel)

The last missing regiment is the Lower Rhenish-Westphalian ‘Mengerson’ Regiment, raised by the Bishopric of Paderborn.  This regiment, again consisting of a single battalion, grenadier company and pair of 4pdr guns, was rated as ‘average’ by Soubise and did actually fight at the Combat of Korbitz.  Some sources also place it at the Combats of Strehla and Wittenberg, where it was probably guarding the baggage of the Prince of Zweibrücken, as it had been during the previous year.

The ‘Mengerson’ Regiment had blue coats with red facings and white lace edging.  The regiment’s greandier company had mitre caps.  Again, the fact that no flags were known was a big factor in my deciding not to paint this regiment, but that flippin’ Frédéric has now produced the flags, which again were very ‘Bavarianesque’.

Anyway, that’s it for now!  The Grand Imperial Parade will follow soon and I will eventually catch up with a late game report for the AWI Battle of the Brandywine (played last March) and an epic game from last weekend, which was a return to the ACW Second Battle of Murfreesboro (aka Stones River).  Here are some tasters:

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Seven Years War Minor German States, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 9 Comments

‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 9): Yet More Reichsarmee Units!

Good news!  It’s time for more Reichsarmee units! 🙂

Upper Rhine District (Oberrheinischen Kreis)

The Imperial Circle of the Upper Rhine was one of the weakest contingents in the Reichsarmee, having only the ‘Hessen-Darmstädt’ (‘Prinz Georg’) Infantry Regiment (1 bn), the ‘Nassau-Weiburg’ Infantry Regiment (2 bns), the ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Infantry Regiment (3 bns) and a small district artillery corps.  They were also a very mixed bag, with Marshal Soubise rating those regiments respectively as ‘Excellent’, ‘Average’ and ‘Poor’.  The Hessen-Darmstädt Regiment (which I covered in Part 2) really was superb, frequently being the only unit left mounting a dogged fighting withdrawal.  The ‘Nassau-Weiburg’ Regiment spent the entire war on garrison duty, so they will be one of the few units I’m not going to paint.  The ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Regiment however, turned up at a number of engagements so needed painting.

Above:  The ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Regiment was actually titled ‘Ysenburg’ until 1757 and does sometimes appear listed as such after that date.  It was also occasionally listed by the full title of its inhaber, ‘Prinz Friedrich Pfalzgraf (‘Count Palatine’) von Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld’.  The regiment theoretically consisted of 18 companies (raised from 33 county contingents), organised into three battalions and a 3pdr artillery detachment (no grenadiers), for a total strength of 1,473 men.  In August 1757 the regiment reported 1,346 men fit for service, but by November that had fallen to 808, despite fighting no battles (the regiment had been absent from Rossbach)!

Another curiosity is that whenever the regiment appears on an order of battle (such as at Strehla), it only shows as two battalions.  Perhaps one battalion was left in garrison, or as a depot, or guarding the baggage train, or perhaps the three battalions were combined into two due to their low strength?  With this in mind, I decided to represent the regiment as two 12-figure battalions.

Pfalz-Zweibrücken IR (Becher)

Above:  Yet again, there are some differences of opinion regarding the uniform of the ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Regiment.  I’ve followed the version put forward by Knötel and Kronoskaf.  This has red lapels, tail-turnbacks, Prussian-style cuffs and tail-turnbacks, with brass buttons and white buttonhole-lace (three pairs of lace bars on each lapel and a pair on the flap above each cuff).  Smallclothes and belts are white.  Hats are decorated with white, scalloped lace and red-over-white pompoms.  Gaiters are white.

However, Frédéric Aubert has a different take on the uniform, instead showing white metal buttons, bastion-shaped lace loops; arranged 1-2-2-2 from top to bottom on each lapel and three loops on each (Swedish-style) cuff.  Gaiters are also black, though it’s possible that this regiment, like many others, had both black and white gaiters; white for parade and/or summer and black for campaign or winter wear.  I decided to go with the white gaiters, just to make them look a bit different from other, similarly-dressed units.

The Becher Manuscript shows yet another version of the uniform (inset above), being devoid of lace and having tri-coloured red/white/blue pompoms.

Above:  My ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Regiment is comprised of Old Glory 15s Prussian infantry figures, with flags by Maverick Models (resized to 20mm square).  Not By Appointment have also recently added a downloadable flag-sheet for the regiment.

Above:  The Circle of the Upper Rhine’s district artillery corps provided units to the Reichsreserveartillerie or Imperial Artillery Reserve (which I covered in Part 2) and may also have supplied regimental artillery to the district’s infantry regiments, though information is scarce.

Above:  The uniform of the Upper Rhine District Artillery consisted primarily of an iron grey coat with brass buttons and green collar, cuffs and tail-turnbacks. The waistcoat was green, breeches were straw and hat-lace was yellow.  I’ve been unable to discover what colour they painted their gun-carriages, so I’ve arbitrarily painted them grey to match the uniform coats.

These are Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures.

Swabian District (Schwäbischen Kreis)

In contrast to the Circle of the Upper Rhine, the Circle of Swabia was one of the strongest districts, fielding the ‘Hohenzollern’ Cuirassiers (4 sqns), ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons (2 sqns) a district artillery corps and four infantry regiments; ‘Alt-Württemberg‘ (1 bn*), ‘Baden-Durlach‘ (1 bn*), ‘Baden-Baden‘ (2 bns) and ‘Fürstenberg’/’Rodt‘ (2 bns).  I painted cuirassiers during the 1990s and cover them in Part 3, while the infantry were all painted during 2021 and 2022, being covered in Part 2 and Part 4.  I therefore had the district artillery and the dragoons left to paint (although the regular Württemberg Army provided some of the artillery and I’ve already got some of those painted as part of my Württemberg Auxiliary Corps).

*The ‘Alt-Württemberg’ and Baden-Durlach’ Regiments each actually had two battalions, but one battalion of each regiment remained on garrison duty for the duration.

Above:  I didn’t originally plan to paint the ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons, as they were such a tiny and ineffective unit.  At full strength they only had 138 men (not including officers) and performed abysmally at Rossbach, even suffering a nasty case of ‘friendly-stab’ from some Austrian hussars, losing their standards in the process!  However, from 1759 they were usually brigaded with the Upper Saxon ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoons (see below), bringing their combined total strength to 360 men (plus officers), so I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt and field them as a (bloody awful) combined unit.

Württemberg Dragoons (1st uniform)

Above:  The Württemberg Dragoons were initially uniformed very much in Prussian style, with light blue coats, black lapels, collar and cuffs, brass buttons, yellow turnbacks, shoulder-strap, aiguillette and waistcoat and straw breeches (some sources show a straw waistcoat).  Horse furniture was light blue, edged yellow worked through with light blue.  However, this uniform was VERY similar to those of the Prussian ‘Normann’ Dragoons (DR1) and ‘Herzog von Württemberg’ Dragoons (DR12) and undoubtedly led directly to the abovementioned ‘friendly-stab’ incident!

Clearly learning their lesson from Rossbach, by 1759 the regiment had changed to a distinctly-different dark blue uniform coat.  As nice as the earlier uniform looks, I’ll be using them primarily in the post-1759 battles, so I’ve gone for the later uniform.  The lapels, collar and cuffs were still black, though these were now edged with yellow lace, worked through with a zig-zag ‘worm’ of black thread.  Buttons were still brass and the yellow aiguillette was still worn, though turnbacks were now red and the shoulder-strap was dark blue.  Smallclothes were now all straw-coloured and the horse furniture was dark blue, edged white with black ‘worms’.  Belts and ammunition pouches were ‘natural leather’, so I’ve gone for a buff shade.

Württemberg Dragoons (2nd uniform)

Above:  For the ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons I used Old Glory 15s Austrian dragoons.  I’ve always loved these figures, as they have stacks of character, lots of different poses and in my opinion are the best figures in the whole Old Glory 15s range.  I’ve used them for other Reichsarmee regiments, as well as Saxon Chevauxlégers, though Old Glory 15s cavalry figures were always let down by their mutant horses.

Having now exhausted my stash of Old Glory Austrian Dragoons from the 1990s, these figures were newly-bought from Barry at Timecast and I was very pleased to discover that the sculptor has re-modelled and vastly improved the horses at some point in the intervening 25 years! 🙂

Above:  Here are the ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons as they’ll appear on the wargames table; grouped with the white-coated ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoons (detailed below).  The standards of the ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons are very well-documented, being very similar to those of the ‘Hohenzollern’ Cuirassiers, though with the central armorial device rotated through 90 degrees (the white cross on black field is shown above the three leopards, whereas on the Cuirassier standards they are side-by-side).  The regiment’s Leibstandarte had a white field, though I’ve opted for the yellow Eskadronstandarte.  This is another design by Ad Hoc Editions, printed on my own laser-printer..

Above:  The Circle of Swabia raised a district artillery corps to provide Swabian infantry regiments with regimental artillery, as well as to reinforce the Reichsreserevartillerie.  The Army of the Duchy of Württemberg is also known to have supplied units in order to beef up the district’s artillery strength.

Above:  The uniform for the Swabian District Artillery Corps was a dark blue coat with red lapels, cuffs and turnbacks, white metal buttons and blue shoulder-strap.  Smallclothes were red and hat-lace was white.  For once we actually know the colour of the gun-carriages and these were yellow with black ironwork, reflecting the colours of Swabia’s heraldry.

These are Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures with a Eureka Miniatures Austrian 6pdr.

Upper Saxon District (Obersachsischen-Kreis)

The Imperial Circle of Upper Saxony was in 1757, thanks to Prussia’s annexation of the Duchy of Saxony during the previous year, followed by the depredations of marauding Prussian Frei-Infanterie, absolutely destitute and unable to meet its Reichsarmee commitments.  It only managed to raise a single infantry regiment of two battalions (the ‘Ernestinisch-Sachsen’ Regiment) and the tiny ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoon Regiment of only two squadrons.

However, Austria assisted Upper Saxony in meeting its commitments by hiring two units from the standing army of the Palatinate (Pfalz); namely the II. Battalion of the Garde zu Fuss Regiment and the Leib-Dragoner-Regiment ‘Kurfürstin’.  This can get a little confusing, as Pfalz was officially part of the Imperial Circle of the Kurrhein, so Pfalz troops also appear there.

Above:  I originally covered the II. Battalion of the Pfalz Garde zu Fuss Regiment just over a year ago, in Part 4 and I won’t repeat myself here.  However, I’ve since re-flagged the battalion with one of Frédéric Aubert’s lovely creations, as shown here. 🙂

Above:  As discussed above, the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoon Regiment was a tiny unit of only two squadrons, numbering some 222 men at full strength (not including officers).  It wouldn’t normally be worth bothering with, but from 1759 it tended to be grouped with the even smaller ‘Württemberg’ Dragoon Regiment (see above), so I thought I’d model the two regiments as a weak combined unit.

Above:  Uniform details for the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoons are fairly sparse, but it is known that the regiment wore a white coat with red facings, brass buttons, yellow aiguillettes and yellow hat-lace.  Sources are split over whether or not the coat had (red) lapels.  I’ve gone with Frédéric’s interpretation, showing no lapels, but red cuffs, collar and shoulder-strap, red waistcoat and pale straw breeches.  I’ve also followed Frédéric’s depiction of red horse-furniture with white lace edging, but I do wonder if yellow lace edging would be more in keeping with the button and hat-lace colour?

Above:  Musicians’ uniforms are unknown for the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoons, but I’ve gone with the style of the Army of the Duchy of Saxony; namely a reverse-coloured coat with button-coloured lace.  Once again, the figures are Old Glory 15s Austrian dragoons.  Nothing whatsoever is known about the regiment’s standards, so I’ve used Frédéric’s  hypothetical regimental standard.

Above:  Again, here are the ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ Dragoons grouped with the ‘Württemberg’ Dragoons, as they’ll appear on the wargames table.

Above:  As discussed above, the Pfalz Leib-Dragoner-Regiment ‘Kurfürstin’ was part of the standing army of Pfalz (The Palatinate), but was hired by Austria to beef up the strength of the Imperial Circle of Upper Saxony.  It is sometimes incorrectly referred to in orders of battle and accounts as the ‘Kurpfalz’ Dragoon Regiment, as a ‘Kreis-Regiment’ or as a regiment of the Circle of the Kurrhein.  It was none of those things.

Above:  At the start of the Seven Years War the ‘Kurfürstin’ Dragoons consisted of three squadrons, each of three companies, for a total of 468 men.  In 1758, following the Austrian contract, the regiment was expanded to conform to Austrian organisation and now consisted of five squadrons, each of two companies, for a total of 800 men.  As such, it was the Reichsarmee’s strongest cavalry regiment and is represented here as a ‘large’ unit of 16 figures.  However, the regiment had an inauspicious start, suffering the loss of 522 men taken prisoner in their first engagement!  Nevertheless, the regiment was quickly reconstituted to full strength and served at all of the Reichsarmee’s major engagements.

Pfalz ‘Kurfürstin’ Dragoons Horse Grenadier Company (Knötel)

Above:  The uniform of the ‘Kurfürstin’ Dragoons consisted of a striking ‘dark’ or ‘brick’ red coat with black lapels and cuffs, red tail-turnbacks and shoulder-strap, brass buttons and yellow aiguillette.  Smallclothes were straw-coloured and the horse furniture was red with yellow lace edging.  Hats were unlaced, though had a black cockade and blue/white corner-rosettes.

One company was designated as Horse Grenadiers and wore Austrian-style bearskin caps with brass plate and red bag, piped and tasseled yellow.  The Horse Grenadier Company was probably normally detached from its parent regiment and massed with other elite companies, in accordance with Austrian practice, but I’ve included them here, as a. they look rather spiffing and b. I had two spare Horse Grenadier figures.

Yet again, these are Old Glory 15s Austrian dragoon figures.

Above:  The guidon of the ‘Kurfürstin’ Dragoons once again comes from one of the superb plates by Frédéric Aubert’s Ad Hoc Editions.  I’ve used the white Leibguidon, though I was very tempted to use the red Eskadronguidon.

Anyway, that’s it for now.  More to come…

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Seven Years War Minor German States, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 1 Comment

‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 8): More Reichsarmee Units

In the unlikely event that there is still someone reading this who isn’t now sick to the back teeth of all things Reichsarmee, here are some more painted units! 😀  Rest assured that they’re all finished now and it’ll soon be over (I finished painting the last Reichsarmee unit last night)…

As posted last time, I managed to get most of my Reichsarmee on to the table recently, for our refight of the Combat of Strehla.  However, a few units weren’t deployed at Strehla, so there will soon be a Grand Imperial Parade showing the entire Reichsarmee en masse, as well as the individual Kreis-contingents.

In the meantime, here are some of the most recently-painted units.  As before, I’ll group them by Imperial ‘Circle’ (Kreis).

Above:  However, before I look at the newly-painted units, here are some cavalry units I painted last year.  As discussed in Part 3, I had to give them temporary Austrian flags, as there weren’t any suitable flags commercially available and there was insufficient information to allow me to paint them.  However, that’s all changed now with Frédéric Aubert’s superb Ad Hoc Editions range of flags and uniform plates.  The regiments from left to right above are the Kurpfalz Cuirassiers, Ansbach Dragoons and Bayreuth Cuirassiers.  Frédéric does all the squadron standard options for each regiment, so I’ve just picked the standard I liked best for each regiment (the white Leibstandarte for the Kurpfalz Cuirassiers and Ansbach Dragoons and a red Eskadronstandarte for the Bayreuth Cuirassiers).

Electoral Rhenish District (Kurrheinischen Kreis)

The Electoral Rhine or Kurrhein, comprising the territories of the Prince-Elector-Palatine of Pfalz (‘The Palatinate’) and the Elector-Archbishops of Mainz, Trier and Köln (Cologne), was the richest and strongest contingent of the Reichsarmee (not including the Austrian contribution).  However, prior to this latest batch, I’d only painted the Kurtrier Regiment (shown in Part 2) and the Kurpfalz Cuirassiers (shown in Part 3), so there were quite a few units left to paint for this contingent, starting with the largest; the Kurmainz Infantry Regiment.

Kurmainz IR Grenadier (Becher)

Above:  As discussed in Part 5, the Archbishop-Elector of Mainz was somewhat more military-minded than most and was contracted to provide the Austrian Army with a regiment of auxiliary infantry, the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment (also sometimes known as the ‘Mainz-Lamberg’ or ‘Mainz’ Regiment).  The ‘Lamberg’ Regiment was not a part of the Reichsarmee, though was eventually assigned to the Reichsarmee as part of Austria’s contribution.  The Archbishop’s ‘proper’ contribution to the Reichsarmee was the Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurmainz’, as shown here.  A number of books, orders of battle and accounts do often confuse the two regiments (e.g. referring to the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment as ‘Kurmainz’), so it pays to be wary.

Prior to the war, Mainz had a small standing army, consisting of a company of a dragoons, a small artillery corps and seven infantry battalions, divided between four regiments (‘Wildenstein’, ‘Preyss’, ‘Hagen’ and ‘Riedt’), for a peacetime total of 5,202 men.  However, these units were not sent to war.  Instead they served as cadres from which the new regiments would be formed.  The ‘Lamberg’ Regiment therefore took personnel from the ‘Wildenstein’ and ‘Riedt’ Regiments, while the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment was raised from the ‘Wildenstein’, ‘Riedt’ and ‘Hagen’ Regiments.

Kurmainz IR Grenadier (Knötel)

While the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment was organised along Austrian lines with two six-company battalions and two grenadier companies, the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment was organised rather differently, with four four-company battalions and two grenadier companies (plus eight 3pdr battalion guns), for a total strength of 2,246 men.  That equates to roughly 500 men per battalion, as opposed to over 800 men per battalion in the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment.  I’ve therefore organised the battalions as ‘normal’ 12-figure units, as opposed to ‘large’ 16-figure units like the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment.  There is however, some evidence to suggest that one of the four battalions remained in Erfurt as a garrison/depot battalion, but various orders of battle refer to four battalions in the field, so I’ve painted all four battalions.

Given that the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment, like the ‘Lamberg’ Regiment, was raised from pre-war regular troops, you’d be forgiven for expecting them to be an effective unit, like the excellent ‘Lamberg’ Regiment.  The French Marshal Soubise certainly thought so in 1757, when he rated them as ‘Good’.  However, in 1759 the entire regiment broke and ran during its first battle at Zinna.

Above:  The only sources for the uniforms of the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment are a plate from the Becher Manuscript (shown above) and two works by Richard Knōtel; a plate from his Grosse Uniformenkunde and a cigarette card (also shown above), both of which were probably based on the Becher plate.  These all show a white coat with green cuffs, lapels and turnbacks, brass buttons, no lace, a green waistcoat, straw breeches and white belts.  Beyond that it’s all guesswork and that includes the flags, about which nothing is known.  I’ve used Eureka Miniatures Austrian figures, with hypothetical flags by Not By Appointment.  Frédéric also does a very different and interesting hypothetical version of the regiment’s flags in his Reichsarmee set, being far more heraldic in nature.

Above:  To add just a little confusion, the ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment is also sometimes referred to as the ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment, due to initially having Johann Georg Baron von und zu Wildenstein as its Colonel and can also be confused with the pre-war Mainz ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment or even the Kurköln ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment, which had a different member of the Wildenstein clan as its Colonel!  Wildenstein didn’t stay with the regiment for very long, as he was promoted in 1757 to Generallieutenant and placed in command of the entire Kurrhein contingent.  As shown in Part 2, I painted Wildenstein during my ‘first wave’ of SYW troops in the 1990s.  He’s an Old Glory 15s Austrian general figure and is wearing his regimental uniform (Reichsarmee generals initially wore their regimentals, but were soon ordered to wear standard Austrian general officers’ uniforms in order to avoid confusion).

Above:  Pfalz or ‘The Palatinate’ possessed by far the most powerful standing army of the Kurrhein, consisting of nine infantry regiments (each of two battalions), a cuirassier regiment, a dragoon regiment and a permanent squadron of cavalry for Imperial service, plus the usual artillery corps and company of horse guards.  However, Pfalz was only required to provide a single infantry regiment of two battalions, a regiment of cavalry and a small artillery contingent to the Reichsarmee.  The Elector-Palatine had some other deals on the side; he had a contract to provide France with an Auxiliary Corps of ten battalions, Austria paid for the use of a single battalion of the Pfalz Garde zu Fuss and also later hired a regiment of dragoons.

Above:  As part of its contribution to the Reichsarmee, Pfalz assigned one of its regular infantry regiments, namely the ‘Effern’ Regiment.  This regiment comprised two grenadier companies and two battalions, each of five companies, plus a pair of 4pdr battalion guns, for a total strength of 1,145 men.  However, the regiment seems to have rarely, if ever reached its full strength and by the end of 1761 it was down to half that number.  The French Marshal Soubise rated the ‘Effern’ Regiment as ‘Average’, though the Pfalz troops were anecdotally regarded as badly-disciplined, especially among the local population when off the battlefield.  The Pfalz Auxiliary Corps assigned to the French was also poorly-regarded and their contract was cancelled at the end of 1758.

Pfalz ‘Effern’ IR (Knötel)

Above:  The uniforms of the Pfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment are described in numerous sources, almost none of which agree with each other!  They certainly had blue coats, though Pengel & Hurt suggest light blue, perhaps influenced by the pale shade used by Richard Knötel in his cigarette card painting of the regiment (shown on the right).  Everyone else says dark blue coats.  Collar, cuffs and smallclothes were white, though sources disagree over whether the tail-turnbacks were white or red.  I arbitrarily went with red, as my other two regiments with white facings (Swabian ‘Baden-Baden’ IR and Franconian ‘Cronegk’ IR have white turnbacks).  Buttons were variously described as yellow or white metal (I went with yellow) and belts are described as pale straw or white (I went with white).  All sources agree that the regiment’s hat-lace was white and scalloped, while pompoms were light blue over white.

These are Old Glory 15s Prussian infantry figures (with one or two Eureka command figures) and the lovely flags are by Ad Hoc Editions.  Ad Hoc do two versions of the flags and I’ve gone with the 1760 Pattern flags, as the ‘Effern’ Regiment did most of its fighting later in the war.  For the Pfalz Auxiliary Corps fighting with the French I’d need to use the earlier pattern.

Above:  As mentioned above, the Pfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment had a detachment of battalion guns assigned from the Pfalz Artillery Corps.  Curiously though, each battalion only had a single gun assigned at the start of the war (more may have been assigned later), while the battalions of the Pfalz Auxiliary Corps assigned to the French had double that number.  It’s possible that Pfalz gunners were also assigned to the Reichsreserveartillerie.

Above:  The uniform worn by Pfalz artillerymen was generally dark blue in colour, including the tail-turnbacks and smallclothes.  Cuffs and shoulder-straps were red and buttons were brass.  Pengel & Hurt and Frédéric Aubert suggest red lapels, but I’ve gone for the plainer look.  Hat-lace was yellow; Kronoskaf shows this as straight lace tape, but Frédéric shows this as scalloped and I’m inclined to agree, as the Pfalz infantry regiments had scalloped hat-lace as standard.  I was able to discover absolutely nothing about the colour of Pfalz gun-carriages, so went with their main heraldic colour of light blue.

These are Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures.

Archbishop Clemens August of Köln

Above: In contrast to the military-minded Archbishops of Mainz and Würzburg, the ‘Baby-Eating’ Archbishop-Elector Clemens August of Köln (Cologne) had no such interests and just maintained the smallest-possible standing army to garrison his territories.  The French paid him a tidy sum of cash for maintaining an Auxiliary Corps of 6,000 men for France’s use, though the old rogue just spent the money on maintaining his extravagant lifestyle and when France called for them in 1757, all he was able to offer up was 1,800 unwilling recruits, who were then assigned to French regiments.

Nevertheless, Köln did supply the Reichsarmee with two single-battalion infantry regiments; the Leib-Regiment ‘Nothaft’ and the ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment.  These two battalions were basically the entire infantry component of Köln’s pitiful standing army.  Note that they are sometimes listed on orders of battle as a single ‘Kurköln’ Regiment of two battalions.

Above:  Each Kurköln infantry regiment consisted of a single battalion of six Fusilier companies, a single (detached) Grenadier company and a battalion gun detachment of two 4pdr guns, for a theoretical total of 820 men.  However, the recorded strength of Leib-Regiment ‘Nothaft’ throughout the war ranged from 373 to 711 men, while the ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment varied between 585 and 714 men.  They were reported as being constantly under-strength, badly-equipped and in a poor state of morale.  I’ve therefore done them as ‘normal’ sized (12-figure) units for Tricorn, rather than as ‘large’ (16-figure) units.  Also, as they’re single-battalion regiments, I’ve given them both a Leibfahne and an Kompaniefahne.

Kurköln Grenadier (Knötel)

Above:  As with most Reichsarmee regiments, there is some debate regarding the details of the two Kurköln Regiments.  All sources agree that the coat was dark blue without lapels and that the Leibregiment ‘Nothaft’ had red cuffs, collar, shoulder-strap and tail-turnbacks.  They also agree that smallclothes and belts for both regiments were white and that the grenadier companies wore Austrian-style bearskins with a front-plate.  However, while most sources agree that the ‘Wildenstein’ Regiment wore the same colourings, one source suggests white facings.  All sources agree that one regiment had yellow metalwork and the other had white metal, but they are evenly split on which way round this was!

I’ve gone with the majority view that both regiments had red facings and have done one battalion with white metal and one with yellow metal.  These figures are mostly Old Glory 15s Prussian infantry, again with a few Eureka command figures.  The (very attractive) flags were the same for both regiments, though Frédéric has hypothesised that the regiment with white metal buttons would have had white ‘metal’ on the flag.  However, I’ve gone with Not By Appointment‘s superb set of flags, which are identical for both regiments.

Above:  I needed some more gunners for my Kurrhein contingent, due to several contingents (most noticeably Mainz) having no known uniform.   However, Frédéric came to the rescue again, with the uniform of the ‘Kurtrier’ Regiment‘s artillery detachment, as illustrated on his superb Reichsarmee uniform plates.  The regiment had two weak battalions, each of four companies, no grenadier companies and an artillery detachment of four 3pdr guns.

Above:  According to Frédéric, the Kurtrier Artillery wore a dark blue coat with red cuffs, no lapels and dark blue shoulder-straps, dark blue tail-turnbacks and brass buttons.  Smallclothes were red.  Hat-lace was white, cockade was black and pompoms were red.  However, I’ve just realised that the hat-lace should be scalloped and I’ve done it straight!  Aargh!  Back to the painting-table…

I’ve absolutely no idea what colours the guns were.  I was going to do them light blue, as that was the regiment’s livery colour.  However, I then had a glut of red-painted guns caused by me ripping the (incorrect) red guns off my French artillery, so the Kurtrier artillery received one of the ex-French red guns (as have the Franconians and Bavarians). 🙂

These are Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures and gun.

Anyway, I was going to go on to cover units from the other Imperial districts, but it’s occurred to me that this article is already huge, so I’ll save those for next time! 🙂

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Seven Years War Minor German States, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 10 Comments

The Combat of Strehla, 20th August 1760: The Refight

As mentioned in recent posts, I’ve been steadily working toward completing the Reichsarmee and last week I finally had enough finished to field all the Reichsarmee units present at the Combat of Strehla.  For the Prussians I managed to do the first few units of Kleist’s Freikorps, including Kleist himself and for the Austrians I refurbished a few units, sprucing up their bases for the game.  As I was on a roll, I also spruced up around thirty pieces of earthworks (breastworks, flêches, redoubts and batteries) that had lain unloved in a box since they were ripped off the terrain-boards for W.A.S.P.‘s Bautzen 1813 demo-game over 25 years ago!

So with the troops and terrain-pieces ready to go, we convened last weekend at the Carmarthen Old Guard‘s monthly Big Game Saturday.  I detailed the historical background and scenario for Strehla last month, so I won’t repeat myself here.  Follow the link if you haven’t already seen it.  As usual, the rules to be used were Tricorn, being my SYW adaptation of Shako Napoleonic rules.

We were sadly a man down on the day, leaving only three players.  I had hoped to lead my beloved Reichsarmee to a glorious victory, but instead took the Prussians, while Andy and Kirk took the Reichsarmee.  Bah.

Having initially set up the troops in their ‘map’ positions (as shown in the first few photos below), each side made some minor adjustments to their deployment, as permitted in the scenario.  The map after redeployment looked like this (below):

Above:  The battlefield as seen from the south (the same orientation as the map above).  Although it’s not that obvious in the photos, the first contour of the larger hills is actually formed by a layer of polystyrene placed under the terrain-cloth.  The second contours of the Dürren-Berg and Otten-Berg were then placed on top of the cloth.  I decided to leave off the very small ring-contours of the Liebschützer-Berg, Sittel-Berg and Latten-Berg.

I’ve also just noticed that the hamlet of Zausswitz (represented by the large house in front of the main Reichsarmee corps) is in the wrong position; it should be further out to the west, due south of Sahlassen.  Ah well, it didn’t make any difference to the game.

Above:  The view from the western edge of the battlefield, with the Austro-Imperial flanking columns in the foreground, aiming to assault the Prussian outpost on the Dürren-Berg.

Above:  The view from the eastern edge of the battlefield.  This flank of the battlefield was anchored on the wide River Elbe and the large riverside town of Strehla.

Above:  Zedtwitz’s Austro-Imperial cavalry division forms the right flank of Zweibrücken’s Main Corps, comprising two Austrian and two Imperial cuirassier regiments.  However, while this deployment made good sense during the approach-march, they’re now stuck facing Strehla and the entrenchments, with the Elbe blocking any attempt at a flanking move.  The very first order transmitted by Zweibrücken during the game would be to order Zedwitz to move his cavalry to the centre.

Above:  Zweibrücken’s Main Corps consists of seventeen Reichsarmee battalions and five Imperial auxiliary battalions.  While they do look pretty, they are mostly bloody awful!  Two batteries from the Reichsreserveartillerie have deployed in front of the army, but they are heavily out-gunned by Hülsen’s Prussians, who have 36 heavy guns (six batteries in game terms)!

Above:  Another shameless view of my very pretty Reichsarmee.  Zweibrücken and his staff observe the Prussian lines and wait for the flank-attack to start.

Above:  On Zweibrücken’s left, Guasco’s Grenadier Corps has deployed onto the Otten-Berg feature and is meant to be launching an assault on Clanzschwitz and the Dürren-Berg beyond.  However, he has deployed his guns and seems content to wait while the gunners do their work.

Above:  The crest of the Otten-Berg was fortified during the previous century by Gustavus Adolphus’ Swedish Army.  However, the old earthworks were not occupied by the Prussians and will play no part in this battle.

Above:  Guasco’s Grenadier Corps includes a dazzling array of colours, including as it does, grenadier companies from 24 different regiments; most in bearskin caps, but some wearing Prussian-style mitre caps.  Historically these were organised into six four-company ad hoc grenadier battalions, but as these were very weak, I’ve rationalised this into four battalions for game purposes; one Austrian and three Imperial.  Guasco’s Corps also includes the Austrian Pallavicini (2 bns) and Sachsen-Gotha (1 bn) Infantry Regiments, the Imperial Hohenzollern Cuirassiers (with some attached Austrian elite Carabinier and Horse Grenadier companies) and a detachment from the Reichsreserveartillerie.  However, it’s just occurred to me while looking at this photo that I completely forgot to deploy the battalion of the Sachsen-Gotha Regiment on the table! 🙂

Above:  On the western edge of the battlefield, the Prince of Würzburg’s Reserve Infantry Division is deploying onto the Liebschützer-Berg feature, above the hamlet of Liebschütz.  Würzburg has the Austrian Luzan and Macquire Regiments (1 bn apiece), another Austrian grenadier battalion and the Imperial Kurtrier (1 bn) and Pfalz-Zweibrücken (2 bns) Regiments.  However Würzburg, like Guasco, has opted to halt his infantry while his gunners (limited to just a few battalion guns) soften up the Prussians on the Dürren-Berg.

Above:  On Würzburg’s left, Kleefeld’s Auxiliary Corps is made of sterner stuff.  Kleefeld had the Imperial Blau-Würzburg Regiment (2 bns), two Grenzer battalions and a weak grenadier battalion under his command.  His mission is to circumvent the Dürren-Berg position via the Laas woods and attack the Prussians from the rear.

Above:  On the extreme left flank, the Prince of Nassau-Usingen, Colonel of the Austrian Pfalz-Zweibrücken Chevauxléger Regiment, has been tasked with cutting off the Prussian lines of retreat.  For this task he has his own regiment, reinforced by the Austrian Baranyay Hussars and the Pfalz Kurfürstin Dragoon Regiment.

Above:  So to the Prussian side of the battlefield: At Strehla the southern end of the town is prepared for defence and occupied by the Wunsch Frei-Infanterie.  The Manstein Grenadier Battalion meanwhile, has occupied the hamlet of Klein-Rügeln, supported by battalion guns.  The Wunsch Frei-Infanterie Jäger Detachment, the Prussian Feldjäger-zu-Fuss and elements of the ex-Saxon Hauss Fusiliers are deployed as picquets along the stream-bank.

Above:  The bulk of Hülsen’s Prussians (9 battalions) are dug in behind a strong line of entrenchments on the high ground just to the west of Strehla.  This position was built by Prince Henry’s of Prussia’s corps during the previous year’s campaign.

Above:  The main Prussian position is very strong in heavy artillery and will be a very tough nut for the Imperial troops to crack.

Above:  Another view of the Prussian entrenchments.  I must say that I’m really pleased with how the refurbished entrenchment models look! 🙂

Above:  The Prussian regular cavalry forms up to the west of the earthworks.  This consists of the Kleist (or ‘Green’) Hussars (HR 1) and the Schorlemmer (or ‘Porcellain’) Dragoons (DR 6).  Both regiments had ten squadrons apiece, so were very large and are represented by two tactical battalions (only two Prussian dragoon regiments had ten squadrons; most had five squadrons).  Dragoon squadrons were around one-third stronger than hussar squadrons, so the dragoon battalions are large 16-figure units.  However, I don’t yet have one of the two large dragoon regiments painted, so I’ve used two different regiments to represent the Schorlemmer Dragoons.

Above:  To the rear of the regular cavalry regiments are two embryonic regiments of Kleist’s new Freikorps; the Dragoons in green coats and bearskin caps and the Hussars, in their nausea-inducing uniform of orange-red and vomit-green. These are the two most recently-raised units in the army and are the most recently-painted units on the table… They’re doomed…

Above:  Out on the far Prussian right flank, Generalmajor von Braun has reinforced his detachment atop the ancient hill-fort of the Dürren-Berg with several battalions and a detachment of 12pdr heavy artillery, in response to the detected Imperial flank-march.

Above:  In front of the Dürren-Berg, the hamlet of Clanzschwitz has been occupied by the Lossow Grenadier Battalion (IV. Standing Grenadier Battalion) and prepared for defence.  On the high ground behind the village, the 12pdr battery, protected by the Lubath Grenadier Battalion (GB 7/30), is positioned to engage Guasco’s Imperial Grenadier Corps on the Otten-Berg.

Above:  The view from the top of the Dürren-Berg.  From right to left, the position is occupied by the two battalions of the Braunschweig-Bevern Infantry Regiment (IR 7), the Beyer Grenadier Battalion (GB 11/14) and the I. Battalion of the ex-Saxon Hauss Fusilier Regiment (IR 55).  After this photo was taken, Braun pulled the 12pdr detachment up to the top of the hill (facing west) and placed the Lubath Grenadiers at right-angles on the right of the line, essentially forming three sides of a square.  Braun was later to regret not pulling the Lossow Grenadiers in from Clanzschwitz…

The sharp-eyed will of course notice that the Hauss Fusiliers on the left are incorrectly wearing grenadier-pattern mitre caps.  These were actually the very last SYW troops I painted prior to losing my SYW mojo in the late 90s.  I needed two battalions of this regiment for a refight of the Battle of Kunersdorf back in the 1990s and painted them according to the Osprey book description of the ex-Saxon regiments wearing grenadier caps to mask the fact that they were rather unreliable…  In fact they didn’t even wear the fusilier caps described by Duffy in his book and instead just wore ordinary hats.  Ah, well… 🙂

Above:  General von Hülsen and his staff  wait for the enemy to make their next move.  Observing nearby is the ever-present correspondent for the Times of London, Sir Aiden Catey, who has survived numerous cavalry charges, ‘accidental’ bounce-throughs and blatant assassination attempts over the years.

Above:  In front of Sir Aiden, a Prussian field-postman accuses a cavalry Flügeladjutant of ‘looking at him in a funny way’.

While observing this amusing altercation, Sir Aiden completely forgot to take watercolour sketches of the opening moves of the battle…

Above:  In the meantime, most of the Austro-Imperial commanders on the left wing had opened their packets of orders, turned to their aides and said “Ficken das für ein spiel auf soldaten!”

As described in the scenario, the flank-marching Austro-Imperial divisions are required to roll dice to execute their orders at the start of the scenario.  Otherwise they simply sit and engage in an artillery-duel (as per the historical events) until new orders are received from the C-in-C and acted upon.  Somewhat remarkably, the dice-rolling exactly mirrors the historical events!  Guasco and Würzburg fail to enact their orders, leaving Kleefeld to carry on alone.  The cavalry on the left flank executes its orders after a delay.

Above:  As Kleefeld’s Grenzer begin to make a nuisance of themselves on the north side of the Dürren-Berg position, the 12pdr battery (in the foreground) opens up on the Hungarian Nikolaus Esterházy Regiment (IR 33).  The Austrian battalion gunners return fire, cutting down some of the Prussian gunners, but the Prussians slew their heavy guns around and load canister, quickly annihilating the impertinent Austrian guns.

It’s probably worth mentioning at this point that we had a power-cut for about 20 minutes, so this photo and the next three are a bit gloomy!

Above:  On the other side of the Laas Wood, the Prince of Nassau-Usingen leads the Austro-Imperial cavalry forward against the Kleist Freikorps.  He orders the Baranyay Hussars to fall back to the second line and the red-coated Imperial Kurfürstin Dragoons (another freshly-painted regiment!) to take their place on the left flank.

Above:  Kleist meanwhile, has turned his regular cavalry around and they are now riding to assist the Freikorps.  However, the enemy cavalry will get there first!

Above:  Nassau-Usingen wastes no time in launching his charge!  His own regiment, the blue-coated Zweibrücken Chevauxlégers (ChR 39) charge the green-coated Kleist Freikorps Dragoons with the Baranyay Hussars in support.  The Kurfürstin Dragoons meanwhile, hit the Kleist Freikorps Hussars.

Above:  Despite having a slight advantage, the initial clash goes badly for the Austro-Imperial cavalry and both leading regiments are beaten off, though with only light casualties.  Sensing victory, the Kleist Freikorps follow through, launching a charge on the Baranyay Hussars.  However, the Hungarian horsemen prove to be made of stronger stuff and having been unfazed by their retreating comrades, succeed in beating off the impetuous Freikorps cavalry, who fall back over the stream.  However, with large numbers of Prussian cavalry bearing down on them, the Baranyay Hussars wisely decide to fall back to rally near Laas, where their comrades will (hopefully) be rallying.

Above:  However, disaster strikes as both Austro-Imperial dragoon regiments fail to rally from their retreat and suddenly discover that they have urgent business to attend to in the rear!  Despite the loss of over two thirds of his command, Nassau-Usingen manages to keep control of the Baranyay Hussars who despite the appalling odds, prepare to charge again.  On the Prussian side the Kleist Freikorps Dragoons managed to rally, but the hussars (being the most recently-painted) headed for the hills.

Above:  At Liebschützen meanwhile, new orders arrive for the Prince of Würzburg.  Zweibrücken is this time taking no chances and has sent both of his ADCs!

Above:  Honour (and the rules…) demands that Nassau-Usingen has no choice but to comply with his orders and therefore leads the Baranyay Hussars once more into the fight.  They are met by the Prussian Kleist Hussars who, despite some sniping from Grenzer in the woods, manage to comprehensively defeat the gallant Hungarians.

Above:  This time Nassau-Usingen is unable to prevent a rout and his entire command quits the field.

Above:  Despite the success of Kleist’s cavalry, the situation for Braun’s infantry atop the Dürren-Berg is deteriorating.  On the edge of the woods, the Lubath Grenadiers are getting the worst of a firefight with the 1st Battalion of the Imperial Blau-Würzburg Regiment and Kleefeld’s grenadier battalion (formed from the grenadier companies of Blau-Würzburg and the Grenzer).  Braun sent the Hauss Fusiliers across to reinforce the firefight, but they immediately suffered heavy casualties from the Grenzer, who also managed to finish off a section of Prussian battalion guns.  With things starting to look dicey on the right flank, Braun orders the Beyer Grenadiers on the left flank to turn about and be prepared to stabilise the situation on the right.

Above:  Würzburg’s Reserve Infantry Division finally advances past the Hungarian Nikolaus Esterházy (on the left).  The Prussian 12pdrs on the Dürren-Berg have inflicted massive casualties on the Hungarians and have knocked out another Imperial battalion gun section, but the Prussian 12pdrs have finally been silenced by the combined fire of the 1st Banal Grenzer and the remaining Austrian battalion guns.  The loss of the 12pdr battery is a massive blow to Braun.

Above:  With the defeat of the Austro-Imperial cavalry, Kleist considers leading his cavalry in a wide ride around the woods, to overrun the Imperial left flank.  However, this request is vetoed by Hülsen, who orders the incredulous Kleist to resume his defensive posture in the centre.  While his hussars rally following their combat (all the while being sniped by Grenzer), the dragoons turn about to resume their former positions.

Above:  The reason for Hülsen’s caution soon becomes apparent; Zedwitz’s Austro-Imperial cuirassier brigade have arrived in the centre, having marched from their former position on the right flank.  To add to Kleist’s problems, the Schorlemmer Dragoons are reporting that they are suffering a constant trickle of casualties from the Imperial heavy guns at Zausswitz.  However, the Imperial infantry are also getting a pasting from long-range Prussian heavy artillery fire.

Above:  As Würzburg’s division advances, the jaws start to close on the Dürren-Berg.

Above:  Even though the situation is turning in their favour, Kleefeld and Würzburg still need Guasco’s Grenadier Corps to join them in crushing the Prussian position.  But where are they?!

Above:  Guasco has spent all this time stationary on the Otten-Berg, observing the fall of shot as his artillery hammers the Prussian Lossow Grenadiers in Clanzschwitz.  However, Guasco’s two right-hand grenadier battalions have been suffering heavy losses from long-range Prussian artillery fire.  But as it happens, an ADC has just arrived at Guasco’s headquarters, demanding that the Grenadier Corps advance at once on the Dürren-Berg!

Above:  It’s entirely possible that the battle for the Dürren-Berg may well be over long before Guasco’s grenadiers arrive!  The Austrians are moving into position for a massive, coordinated charge, but for now seem content to trade volleys.  However, they don’t have it all their own way, as the 1st Battalion of the Hungarian Nikolaus Esterházy Regiment is broken by fire from the 1st Battalion of the Braunschweig-Bevern Regiment.

Above:  At Clanzschwitz, the Lubath Grenadiers, having suffered heavy losses from Guasco’s artillery, make a break for it and attempt to march to Braun’s aid.  However, Würzburg spots the move and sends his grenadiers and remaining battalion guns to interdict their march.

Above:  At long last, Guasco’s division starts to move forward.  Having driven the Prussian grenadiers out of Clanzschwitz, Guasco’s artillery switches its fire to the Dürren-Berg.

Above:  The situation for Braun’s Prussians on the Dürren-Berg is grim.  On the right flank, the ex-Saxon Hauss Fusiliers, under intense pressure from the Grenzer in the woods, perhaps unsurprisingly, break and run.  Rather more alarmingly, the 2nd Battalion of the Braunschweig-Bevern Regiment, ordinarily a good, solid unit, were holding their own against the Austrian Macquire Regiment to their front despite losses caused by ‘overs’ from the earlier artillery duel.  However, the sudden storm of shot from Guasco’s artillery finally breaks them.  The Beyer Grenadiers wheel into line on the left flank to hold the line, but the sudden loss of two battalions (on top of the previous loss of two artillery units) demoralises Braun’s command.

[Note the Stagger/Disorder marker next to Braun’s figure.  In game terms, Demoralisation of a command means that a -1 modifier is applied to all morale, formation morale and melee rolls and any retreating unit will immediately flee the field.]

Above:  Another view of Die Kleine Rund-Spitze.  In the background, Kleist’s cavalry are returning to their original positions, but are being battered by Imperial heavy guns and Grenzer.  But where is the Imperial cavalry threat…?

Above:  Kleist curses foully in Low German, as it soon becomes apparent that the enemy cuirassiers are content to sit and wait for the artillery and Grenzer to soften up the Prussian cavalry!

If you’re interested, the two leading regiments are the Austrian De Ville (red flag) and Bretlach Cuirassiers, while the second line is formed by the Franconian Bayreuth Cuirassiers (red flag) and Kurpfalz Cuirassiers (white flag).

Above:  As expected, the main Prussian position remains completely un-engaged.  It would be suicide for a good army to mount a frontal assault on these earthworks, let alone a poor-quality one like the Reichsarmee!  The Prussian heavy guns have done some damage to the Imperial lines, but nowhere near enough.  In the meantime, the Manstein Grenadiers, garrisoning the outlying fortified village of Klein-Rügeln, have been taking a pasting from Imperial guns.

Above:  At last the Imperial infantry begin to move.  The Imperial Right Wing has formed columns to the right (indicated by the MDF arrows) and is marching off to the flank, over the Reussen-Berg.  Although they’ve attracted a lot of long-range gunnery, only one unit, the 4th Battalion of the Kurmainz Regiment, has been broken by the artillery and casualties are otherwise light.

Above:  Two excellent units lead the columns; the Hessen-Darmstädt Regiment (single-battalion regiment with Swiss-style flag) leads the 1st Line, the remained of which is formed by theKurmainz Regiment.  The 2nd Battalion of the Pfalz Garde-Regiment zu Fuss (blue flag) leads the 2nd Line, followed by the two battalions of the Pfalz Effern Regiment and two single-battalion Köln regiments; Nothaft (Leib) and Wildenstein.

Above:  The Imperial Left Wing remains stationary for the time being.  The 1st Line is formed from the three battalions of the Kurbayern Regiment (nearest the camera), then the 1st Battalion of the Swabian Alt-Württemberg Regiment and the two battalions of the Rot-Würzburg Regiment.  The 2nd Line is formed from two battalions each of the Swabian Rodt Regiment, the Swabian Baden-Baden Regiment and the Mainz Lamberg Regiment.

Above:  Back at the Dürren-Berg, Würzburg and Kleefeld, increasingly frustrated at the dogged resistance shown by Braun’s Prussian infantry, order a general assault.  On the left, the 1st Battalion of the Blau-Würzburg Regiment charge out of the woods, but are stopped dead at the wood’s edge by the fire of the Lubath Grenadiers.  The pattern is repeated all along the line, as the surviving battalion of the Bevern Regiment halts the charge of the surviving Hungarian battalion and the Beyer Grenadiers throw back the Luzan Regiment.  On the right of the Austrian line, the Macquire Regiment look certain to capture the last detachment of Prussian battalion guns, but they are frustrated by the Lossow Grenadiers, firing in support of the gunners.

Above:  However, Prussian jubilation is short-lived, as the supporting Austrian battalion gunners soon destroy the Lossow Grenadiers with point-blank canister fire!  The vengeful Macquire Regiment soon overruns the Prussian guns and wheels left to turn the Prussian flank.  A battalion of the Imperial Pfalz-Zweibrücken Regiment reinforces this success.  The rest of the Austro-Imperial line charges again without success, but with their flank turned, the Prussians are now doomed.

Above:  With his position collapsing, Braun looks behind him, hoping to see salvation in the form of Kleist’s cavalry… However, Kleist has his own problems.  His dragoons have suffered heavy losses from Imperial artillery fire while attempting to hold the centre, while his hussars have also suffered losses thanks to stray rounds bouncing through the dragoon lines and the ever-present Grenzer sniping from the woods.  Kleist judges that Braun is doomed and that the army will now have to retreat.  Hülsen will need Kleist’s cavalry to screen that retreat, so it would be folly to waste them now on a doomed charge.

With a heavy heart, Kleist orders his cavalry to cross the stream, away from the Dürren-Berg.  As he rides away, he fancies that he hears Braun’s voice above the din of battle, calling him a coward…

Above:  However, Kleist’s assessment is correct… The Austrian and imperial infantry charge for third time and once again receive withering fire from the Prussian defenders as they climb the slopes of the Dürren-Berg.  The 1st Battalion of the Blau-Würzburg Regiment this time is completely broken by the fire of the Lubath Grenadiers and they are soon followed by the 2nd Battalion of the Nikolaus Esterházy Regiment, who have dashed themselves to pieces against the indomitable 1st Battalion of the Bevern Regiment!  The Italians of the Austrian Luzan Regiment are halted once again by the Beyer Grenadiers.

Above:  However, despite having destroyed the enemy to their front, the Lubath Grenadiers are surprised to find themselves suddenly attacked from the rear by the Macquire Regiment, who have charged over the crest of the Dürren-Berg!  There is little quarter for the grenadiers as they are completely destroyed.  The Beyer Grenadiers meanwhile, are charged in the flank by the Pfalz-Zweibrücken Regiment and are similarly annihilated.  The Pfalz-Zweibrücken Regiment has the dubious honour of being judged the worst regiment in the Reichsarmee, but every dog has his day…

The 1st Battalion of the Braunschweig-Bevern Regiment meanwhile, has beaten off every assault and has barely suffered a scratch, but surrounded and alone, they are at last forced to surrender.

Above:  With the Prussian cavalry retiring, the Grenzer keep on the pressure.

Above:  “Weglaufen!”  Thankfully for Kleist, ADCs arrive from Hülsen, telling him to do exactly what he’s already doing… Kleist ensures he gets his orders in writing and deposits them safely in his sabretache for future Courts-Martial…

Above:  At last, the Imperial Left Wing, plus Zedtwitz’s cuirassiers, begin to advance past Zausswitz.

Above:  The Imperial Right Wing continues its march out to the right flank.  Zweibrücken has assessed that the town of Strehla is the weak-point in the Prussian line; it’s only lightly-defended and although fortified, doesn’t have anything like the concentration of artillery that the main line possesses.

Above:  The Imperial artillery meanwhile, has massively reduced the defences of Klein-Rügeln (represented by the half-timbered house forward of the main Prussian line).  The garrison, consisting of the Manstein Grenadiers are on the verge of breaking and their supporting battalion guns have been silenced.

Above:  All that stands between the Imperial infantry and the town is a single battalion of the Wunsch Frei-Infanterie-Regiment and a few companies of Jäger.  If they can take the town, the entire Prussian line will be severely compromised.

Above:  However, with the fall of the Dürren-Berg, Hülsen has already accepted defeat and with Kleist’s cavalry largely still intact, his army should be able to disengage and withdraw unmolested to the next defensive position at Wittenberg.

Above:  An overall view of the final situation.  All-in-all a total balls-up by the Prussians…  As is patently obvious, I should have been FAR more aggressive with Kleist’s cavalry and give them orders to attack on the right; either from the outset, or as soon as Hülsen could get an ADC to them, once the Austrian flanking cavalry had been defeated.  Instead I allowed myself to be distracted by the Imperial cuirassier division, which to be honest, had no chance of making it through the storm of 12pdr shot that would have been heading their way, had they advanced!

As always, I end this game report in wondering if this really is the hobby for me…? 😉

My thanks to Andy and Kirk for making it such a great game!

Posted in Eighteenth Century, Games, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 16 Comments

“Rogues! Do You Want To Stay In The Toolbox Forever?!” (Part 9: Prussian Hussars)

This weekend we’re going to be refighting the Combat of Strehla, as per the scenario I posted last time.  The rules to be used, will of course be Tricorn.  I’ve finally got all the required Reichsarmee units finished, as well as some dragoons and hussars for Kleist’s Freikorps, as well as ‘Green’ Kleist himself.   I’ll talk more about the game and those new units in future articles.

Speaking of Tricorn, it seems that the community of players is growing!  🙂  The New Buckenham Historical Wargamers (NBHW) recently played a truly EPIC refight of the Battle of Dettingen 1743 (pictured below).  The game report can be found on Jabba’s Wargaming Blog and on the NBHW Facebook page.  Photo courtesy of Jabba.

Anyway, on to the Prussian Hussars…  I’ve got two new regiments to show off: the so-called Weisse Husaren (HR 4) and the Capucin Husaren (HR 6) (pictured below with HR 3, which I painted last year).  These are all 18mm figures by Eureka Miniatures.

I actually painted these a few months ago, over Christmas and New Year, in preparation for our January Kolin refight.  I could have cobbled together Zieten’s hussar division from the more elderly odds and sods in my collection, but decided that it would be nice to add some more units and actually match the order of battle.  They were very well-travelled regiments, so will see plenty of action.

Puttkamer, Georg Ludwig von (1715-1759).jpg


Above:  This regiment was for obvious reasons, commonly known unofficially as the Weisse-Husaren (‘White Hussars), though at the start of the Seven Years War the regiment had the official title ‘Puttkamer’ for its Chef (i.e. Colonel-Proprietor), Georg Ludwig von Puttkamer.  Somewhat unusually, Puttkamer also served in the field as the regiment’s Oberst-Commandant.  However, in 1759 and having been promoted to Generalmajor, Puttkamer was killed at the head of his hussars during the Battle of Kunersdorf and the regimental title passed to August Lavin von Dingelstädt, who was more of a traditional stay-at-home Chef.  The regiment changed Chef again in 1762 to Balthasar Ernst von Bohlen.

The regiment was fourth in seniority, though regimental numbers weren’t actually used until the 1780s, being finally formalised in 1806.  However, the anachronistic regimental numbers are often used in histories, as it makes regiments easier to identify when their titles kept changing.  This unit is therefore commonly referred to as Husaren-Regiment Nr. 4 (HR 4).

Above:  HR 4 had a number of other unofficial nicknames, including Bählämmer (‘Bleating Lambs’), due to their distinctive white pelisse jackets.  It must therefore have come as relief to later be referred to as Wölfe im Schafspelz (‘Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing’) or simply Wölfe (‘Wolves’) thanks to their impressive fighting reputation.

Above:  The reason these are very large 24-figure units, as opposed to my usual 12 or 16 figures, is that most Prussian hussar regiments were very large, comprising ten squadrons apiece.  Each hussar squadron started the war with around 115 men, though this number was increased during the war, varying by regiment.  In 1759 the Puttkamer Hussars were recorded as having around 145 men per squadron.  Most hussar squadrons were around the same strength, though the squadrons of HR 5 and HR 7 attached to Ferdinand of Brunswick’s Western Allied Army were around 25% stronger.  Dragoon and cuirassier squadrons were routinely around 25% stronger than hussar squadrons.  Tactically, these large regiments usually operated as two five-squadron battalions which would usually be grouped together, though could operate completely independently.

Above:  The uniform of HR 4 consisted of a light blue dolman jacket, decorated with mixed light blue & white lace and braid and white metal buttons.  Collar and cuffs were the same colour as the dolman.  Sources disagree as to whether the barrel-sash was red & white or light blue & white.  Breeches were buff and were worn with light blue charivari leggings edged with mixed light blue & white lace.  The pelisse was white, edged with white fur and decorated with more mixed light blue & white braid and white metal buttons.  Headgear was a plain black mirliton cap, dressed with white cords and a white tassel at the end of the ‘wing’.  The sabretache was white, edged light blue and with the royal ‘FR’ cypher in light blue.  The carbine cross-belt was white, while the sabre-scabbard and sabretache were suspended from red leather belts.  The shabraque was white, edged with light blue vandycking.

Above:  Officers of HR 4 had silver buttons and lace, as well as a silver lace ‘frame’ around the breast-braiding, silver edging to the ‘wing’ of the mirliton cap, silver cap-cords, a silver barrel-sash and silver edging to the vandycking on the shabraque.  Officers also had a different pattern of sabretache, being light blue with a white or silver zig-zagged edge and a white shield bearing a black eagle, with a gold crown above.  Officers also had a light blue rosette on the front of the mirliton and black fur edging to the shabraque.  NCOs wore much the same uniform as the rank-and-file, though with the light blue rosette and mixed black & white cords on the mirliton and silver laced edging to the cuffs.  Trumpeters had lace shoulder-wings and white lace edging to the ‘wing’ of the cap, as well as a white plume (Bleckwenn shows light blue threads mixed into the white plume).

Johann Paul von Werner – Pan na Bujakowie - Szkice z Dziejów Ziemi  Mikołowskiej


Above:  HR 6, known popularly as the Capucin-Husaren for the brown colour of its uniforms, resembling the colour of the brown habits worn by Capucin monks.  However, its official title at the start of the Seven Years War was ‘Wechmar’ for its Chef, Ludwig Anton Graf von Wechmar.  However, the regiment passed in February 1757 to Johann Paul von Werner, who held the title until his death in 1785.

Interestingly, both Wechmar and Werner were ‘hands on’ Chefs, serving also as Oberst-Commandant in the field (this seems to have been a ‘thing’ among Hussar Chefs) and this possibly explains their outstanding battlefield performance.  Werner in particular, had been a superb hussar officer in Austrian service, but was denied advancement due to his Protestant faith and therefore resigned from Austrian service to take the King of Prussia’s schilling.  His superb performance during the first two years of the Seven Years War led to his promotion in 1758 to Generalmajor and in 1761 to Generallieutenant.

Above:  Like most other Prussian hussar regiments, HR 6 had ten squadrons and like HR 4 was recorded in 1759 as having around 145 men per squadron.  I’ve therefore represented the regiment as 24 figures, grouped tactically into two 12-figure battalions.

7yw prussian hussarAbove:  The uniform of HR 6 comprised a brown dolman with yellow collar, cuffs, lace and braid with brass buttons, brown charivari edged yellow and a brown pelisse with white fur edging, yellow braid and brass buttons.  Breeches were buff.  The headgear was a plain black mirliton cap with white cords and a white tassel at the end of the wing.  Belts were same as those for HR 4.  The sabretache was brown with yellow lace edging and the ‘FR’ cypher in yellow.

The exact shade of brown is the source of some debate, with opinions ranging from a deep coffee-brown to mahogany, to a light fawn.  I’ve gone somewhere in the middle, using Humbrol German Camouflage Red Brown (160) as the base colour, with white mixed in for the highlight.

Above:  Officers of HR 6 had gold lace and braid in lieu of yellow, including a scalloped gold lace ‘frame’ around the breast-braid.  Cap-cords were gold and the ‘wing’ was edged and tasselled in gold.  Barrel-sash was silver.  The officers’ pattern sabretache was brown with yellow vandycking around the edge and a central white shield with black eagle and gold crown above. Another version shows gold wreaths instead of the yellow vandycking.  NCOs had the same uniform as the rank-and-file, though with gold lace around the cuffs of the pelisse, mixed black & white cap-cords and a yellow rosette on the front of the cap.  Trumpeters had mixed white & yellow lace and braid, lace shoulder-wings, gold cap-cords, gold lace edging to the ‘wing’ and a yellow plume with black threads mixed in.

Above:  When Werner was promoted to Generalmajor in 1758, he adopted a tricorn hat decorated with a black cockade and edged with gold lace and white ostrich feathers.  He also adopted a red shabraque with rounded corners, silver lace edging and silver ‘scalloping’.  The whole ensemble is shown on the right.

Bleckwenn also shows Werner as a general, wearing a red dolman with silver lace and braid, a tricorn hat with silver edging, pale straw breeches without charivari and black boots with silver edging and tassels.  However, he’s shown wearing the brown and gold pelisse of HR 6.

Above:  After painting HR 6, I vowed I would never paint another hussar… However, I have all the breaking-strain of wet tissue-paper and as mentioned above, I’ve been painting elements of Kleist’s Freikorps for tomorrow’s Strehla game, including Kleist himself and half of the Kleist Freikorps Hussar Regiment.  I’ll cover these fellas in detail in a future article, but I couldn’t resist showing them off! 🙂  They were also sometimes known as the ‘Jung-Kleist’ Hussars, to avoid confusion with the regular ‘Kleist’ Hussar Regiment (HR 1), who also happened to have Kleist as their Chef!

Above:  The Kleist Freikorps Hussars had possible the most GOPPING uniform of the Prussian Army, being a combination of orangey-red and yellow-green…  They should certainly stand out on the table!  Galloping alongside is ‘Green’ Kleist himself, who wears the two-tone green uniform of HR 1.

Anyway, it’ll be fun to see them in action tomorrow! 🙂

That’s it for now!  I’ve been a bit slow this month, but I’ve still got the Brandywine refight after-action report to post, as well as a stack of new Reichsarmee units and the report for tomorrow’s game.

Oh and a Happy 5th Birthday to Jemima Fawr! 🙂

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Prussian Army, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 10 Comments

The Combat of Strehla, 20th August 1760: A Scenario for ‘Tricorn’

As mentioned in recent posts, I’ve ALMOST completed the Reichsarmee for the Severn Years War! 🙂  When it comes to painting, I always work best with an objective game on the calendar, so on 15th April we’re going to be getting most of the Reichsarmee on the table with a refight of the Combat of Strehla.  So as usual, here’s the scenario (written for Tricorn, my SYW variant of Shako rules) and a bit of historical scene-setting/guff.

The campaigns in Saxony during the Seven Years War were very much a side-show compared to Frederick’s ‘main events’ in Bohemia, Silesia and elsewhere and as a consequence are largely given far less coverage than Frederick’s own battles.  However, they provide a wealth of historical wargame scenarios ranging from small actions of the Petit Guerre to brigade-sized actions such as the Combat of Meissen, to divisional-sized actions such as the Combat of Zinna, to larger multi-divisional battles such as Pretzsch, Korbitz and Maxen and then very large battles such as Torgau and Freiberg.  As a bonus, a lot of these battles also involved the colourful Reichsarmee! 🙂

As the Saxony Campaign of 1760s is not very well-known and can be very confusing with countless marches, counter-marches and intricate manoeuvres, this is a slightly long potted history, but I think it’s worth explaining where the Combat of Strehla fits into the Great Scheme of Things…

General Finck surrenders to Marshal Daun at Maxen 1759

Historical Background (The Saxony Campaign of 1760)

Frederick II

The capture of General Finck’s entire Prussian corps of 13,000 men at Maxen on 20th November 1759 was the last body-blow suffered by the Prussian King Frederick II during a terrible year that had also included catastrophic defeats at the hands of the Russians at Paltzig and Kunersdorf.

However, the situation for Frederick was not all bad.  In western Germany, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick and his British, Hanoverian, Hessian, Brunswick, Schaumburg-Lippe & Prussian alliance army had won a remarkable victory against the French and Saxons at Minden, thus diminishing the French threat to Prussia and the rest of the alliance for the time being.  Ferdinand followed this up with a further victory against the army of Württemberg at Fulda.


The Russians meanwhile, despite their victory at Kunersdorf, had also suffered appalling losses and had consequently broken off their attack on Brandenburg and withdrawn into winter quarters.  This decision, later referred to by Frederick as ‘The Miracle of the House of Brandenburg’, had given Frederick vital breathing space to rebuild his army and restore the situation.

So despite the loss of Finck’s corps, the situation by the end of 1759 had largely stabilised for Prussia.  The situation remained quiet for the first half of 1760, as Frederick’s main army remained in Saxony, locked in a stalemate with Field Marshal Daun’s Austrian main army and Prince Michael of Pfalz-Zweibrücken’s Reichsarmee.


In June 1760 the armies began once again to move in earnest.  Daun finally left his winter quarters and marched for Silesia, to join an assault led by the ‘up and coming’ Feldmarschallieutenant Loudon.  Detecting the move, Frederick attempted to block and destroy Daun and another Austrian corps under Lacy.  However, Loudon in the meantime had managed to outwit and defeat Frederick’s close friend the Baron de la Motte Fouqué at Landeshut in Silesia, killing or capturing all but 1,500 of Fouqué’s corps, including Fouqué himself who was captured with honour, having suffered three sword-cuts in a desperate last-stand action.


As the news of Fouqué’s defeat arrived in Saxony, Daun made a renewed effort to break contact from Frederick, in order to reinforce Loudon’s success in Silesia and in accordance with his orders from Vienna.  Frederick immediately followed, leaving Generallieutenant Hülsen to keep the Reichsarmee busy at Dresden.  However, that still left Feldzeugmeister Lacy’s Austrian corps free to shadow and frustrate Frederick’s pursuit of Daun.

By 8th July, Frederick was near Bautzen, marching east in pursuit of Daun, with Lacy following.  However, it occurred to Frederick that he suddenly had an opportunity to not only destroy Lacy’s troublesome and now isolated corps, but also to recapture Dresden.  He immediately reversed his march and bore down on an unsuspecting Lacy!  By some miracle, Lacy managed to escape the trap and after a gruelling forced-march, managed to find safety on the western bank of the Elbe.


On 13th July, Frederick’s army also crossed back over to the west bank of the Elbe, crossing below (i.e. to the north of) Dresden, thus inserting themselves between the city and Zweibrücken’s Reichsarmee, which already had its hands full with Hülsen’s Prussian corps, further down the Elbe at Meissen.  Frederick was aiming to assault the old half of Dresden, which lies on the western bank of the Elbe.  The new half of the city (Neustadt) on the eastern bank had relatively modern fortifications, whereas the old city’s fortifications dated back to the Thirty Years War and were closely surrounded by suburbs which further reduced their defensive value.  Frederick didn’t have the resources for a protracted siege, but hoped he could capture the city by surprise.  However, he didn’t count on the tenacious and active defence that would soon be mounted by the city’s governor, Feldmarschallieutenant Macquire.

Dresden in the 1760s by Canaletto


The initial attempted surprise attack on 14th July by Jäger and the ‘Courbière’ Frei-Infanterie was a failure and so Frederick was soon forced to initiate a formal siege.  Within days, almost half of the old city of Dresden, one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, was on fire thanks to Prussian mortars.  However, the defenders held firm and the Prussians, lacking sufficient heavy cannon to make a practicable breach, were unable to storm the city.  To make matters worse for Frederick, he now received word that Daun too had reversed his march and was returning to Dresden.  In addition, the Silesian fortress of Glatz was besieged by Loudon and Prince Henry had reported that the Russians were once again on the move, marching into Silesia and outnumbering Prince Henry’s corps by two-to-one!  Frederick knew that he needed to end the siege of Dresden as soon as possible, break off and march to Silesia, all while trying to avoid being forced into a battle by Daun.


On 20th July, Daun arrived at Dresden and launched a surprise attack on Prussian entrenchments, only to find that the Prussians and their guns had gone.  However, the Saxon ‘Rudnicki’ Uhlans came within a whisker of ending the war when they raided Frederick’s headquarters, almost capturing Frederick in his nightshirt!

The Prussians maintained the illusion of a siege for another week, but on 28th July word arrived in both camps that Glatz had fallen to Loudon and Breslau was now threatened.  While the Austrians celebrated, Frederick managed to slip away during the stormy night of 29th-30th July, marching north to Meissen and crossing over to the east bank of the Elbe.  The Prince of Pfalz-Zweibrücken’s Reichsarmee completely failed to detect or block this move.  The race to Silesia was on!


Frederick left around 12,000 troops under Generallieutenant Johann Dietrich von Hülsen’s command to once again tie down enemy forces in Saxony.  However, Hülsen had his work cut out, as Daun felt confident enough to leave 25,000 Austrian and Imperial troops in Saxony, under the command of the Prince of  Pfalz-Zweibrücken, aided by the capable Hungarian General der Cavallerie Andreas Hadik.  Daun meanwhile marched east, pushing his troops hard to get ahead of Frederick.  Lacy’s corps once again followed in Frederick’s wake.

With the main armies having once again marched out of Saxony and the remaining Austro-Imperial forces outnumbering the Prussians by two-to-one, Hadik presented Zweibrücken with a plan to go on to the offensive.  Like the cities of Dresden, Torgau and Wittenberg, Hülsen’s base at Meissen straddled the Elbe and was a key crossing-point on that great river.  The Reichsarmee would therefore attempt to either evict Hülsen from Meissen, or shut him up within the city while the Reichsarmee removed other Prussian garrisons such as the one at Leipzig, at leisure.

However, Hülsen detected the Reichsarmee‘s manoeuvres and managed to slip out of the closing trap during the night of 16th-17th August.  Determined to remain at large on the west bank of the Elbe, he marched his corps northward along the river and on 18th August established himself at one of Prince Henry’s former fortified camps from the previous year, on high ground next to the town of Strehla.  Strehla wasn’t fortified and its beautiful castle was now more ornamental than defensive, but the old camp still had a strong line of entrenchments facing south.  Hülsen also occupied the ancient hill-fort of the Dürren-Berg, which commanded his right flank.  There was a further fortification, this one built by the Swedes a century earlier on a low hill known as the Otten-Berg, but this was positioned too far out to be worth occupying.

On 19th August, Hülsen received news of the King’s victory four days previously, over Loudon at Liegnitz.  Hülsen was so overjoyed that he immediately started planning a surprise attack on the Reichsarmee.  However, reports soon arrived from Oberst von Kleist’s cavalry, informing him that the Reichsarmee were manoeuvring to attack.

Frederick at Liegnitz, 15th August 1760

The Reichsarmee were advancing in accordance with the latest Austrian doctrine (used for the first time with great effect at Hochkirch in 1758) of dispersed columns, converging to attack at a single point.  The main body of the Reichsarmee, under the personal command of Zweibrücken and Hadik, would mount a frontal demonstration, fixing Hülsen in place at Strehla.  The Prince of Stolberg’s Reserve Corps and Guasco’s Grenadier Corps would then mount an assault on the Dürren-Berg, while Kleefeld’s Auxiliary Corps would conduct a long march around the Prussian flank, using the cover provided by the topography and woodland, to mount a surprise attack on the Dürren-Berg from the rear.  With that position taken, they would then proceed to attack the flank and rear of the main Prussian position while the main body advanced to complete the task.


However, in war ‘the enemy always gets a vote’ and having detected the Reichsarmee’s moves, Hülsen ordered his infantry commander, Generalmajor Heinrich Gottlieb von Braun, to reinforce the Dürren-Berg position and to take personal command of its defence.  The gap between the Dürren-Berg and the main position would be filled by the cavalry.

The Austro-Imperial plan began to unravel almost immediately as the firebrand Italian Feldmarschallieutenant Guasco, attacking the Dürren-Berg directly from the south, became uncharacteristically cautious and was content to engage in an indecisive artillery duel from the Otten-Berg.  The Prince of Stolberg’s Reserve Corps was similarly cautious, doing little except moving a few guns up onto the Liebschützer-Berg, where they too became fixated on an indecisive artillery-duel.  The exception to this was the Hungarian ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ Regiment (IR 33), who took it upon themselves to join Kleefeld’s attack on the Dürren-Berg.


Kleefeld’s corps meanwhile, consisting of the excellent Imperial auxiliary ‘Blau-Würzburg’ Regiment, two battalions of Grenzer and a weak grenadier battalion, had successfully marched around to the rear of the Dürren-Berg via the village of Laas and was now attacking uphill through the woods on the north slope, as per the plan.  However, as they emerged from the trees, they ran straight into a storm of musketry and canister fire from Braun’s troops, arrayed along the crest and clearly waiting for them!  On Kleefeld’s right flank, the Hungarians had arrived to assist, but were also engaged in a fierce, short-range firefight and were seemingly unable to make headway.

With the attack stalling, disaster now struck in the form of five squadrons of the Prussian ‘Schorlemmer’ Dragoons!  They had been sent around the southern side of the Dürren-Berg and despite being exposed to Austrian artillery fire for much of the way, rode up the southern slope and over the crest, completely surprising the Hungarians and crushing their right flank!  The Hungarian regiment completely disintegrated and continued slaughter was only prevented by the personal intervention of one Captain Seeger of the general staff, who led the Swabian ‘Hohenzollern’ Cuirassiers to the rescue.

‘Green’ Kleist

Although those five squadrons of Prussian dragoons had been driven off, the rest of the ‘Schorlemmer’ Dragoons, along with ‘Green’ Kleist’s ten squadrons of hussars from his own regiment (HR 1) and four squadrons of dragoons from his freikorps (FD II), had ridden around the north side of the woods, where they encountered the cavalry of Stolberg’s Austro-Imperial Reserve Corps.

The Austro-Imperial horse had been sent beyond Laas to be in a position to cut the Prussian line of retreat.  However, they suddenly found themselves sorely outnumbered by the Prussian horse and the ‘Baranyay’ Hussars (H 30) and Pfalz ‘Kurfürstin’ Dragoons were immediately driven off.  The Austrian ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ Chevauxlégers (Ch 39), being made of somewhat sterner stuff, attempted to make a fight of it, but were completely overwhelmed, suffering the capture of three standards and their Colonel, Prince Friedrich August von Nassau-Usingen.


With Kleefeld and the cavalry defeated and with Stolberg and Guasco seemingly unable or unwilling to make progress, the rest of the Reichsarmee remained in its positions while their commanders considered their next move.

In the event, Hülsen made the decision for them; the Austro-Imperial surprise attack had failed, but the day was still young and they still had massive reserves of uncommitted troops.  the Prussian defenders of the Dürren-Berg were fatigued and had suffered over 1,000 casualties for the Austro-Imperials’ loss of 1,800 and at that rate, the Prussians simply could not win a battle of attrition.  Hülsen therefore made the decision to make good their losses and to slip away northward, toward Torgau during the afternoon, before the Reichsarmee got its act together.

So historically, the Combat of Strehla turned out to be something of a damp squib, hence it generally being referred to as a ‘Combat’, rather than a ‘Battle’.  Both sides latterly tried to claim victory and biographies of the Prince of Pfalz-Zweibrücken still refer to this as being his victory, though the Reichsarmee had completely failed in its stated aim of either destroying Hülsen’s corps or trapping it against the Elbe.  Over the next few weeks and despite some setbacks, Hülsen would manage to grind the Reichsarmee down to the point of collapse in late October.  This event would coincide with the return of the main armies to Saxony and would lead to the colossal Battle of Torgau on 2nd November, but that’s for another article…

The Scenario

As mentioned above, the historical action turned out to be something of a damp squib, but if your dice-rolling is like mine, there’s still plenty of potential for it to be a great wargame/bloodbath!  And you get to field the bulk of the Reichsarmee, so what’s not to like?!  🙂

Of course, not everyone has a stack of Reichsarmee figures just waiting to go, so just feel free to use Austrians, French, Russians, or whatever you have in your collection.

There is of course, nothing stopping you from doing a ‘balls out’ battle until one side or the other breaks.  However, if you want to limit yourself to something a bit more ‘historical’, I suggest the following:

1. Limit the game to 12 turns (a totally arbitrary number I just pulled out of my arse.  Feel free to change it).

2. The Prussian player may issue any orders to his commands at the start of the game.

3. The Austrian player may not issue Attack orders to any divisions of the Main Body at the start of the game.  For all other divisions, once orders have been written and before the start of the game, roll on the Aides de Camp Table (Page 4 of the Tricorn QRS) to see if those divisions implement their orders, applying a +1 modifier to Kleefeld’s roll.  Remember that new orders may not be written and transmitted until the Orders Phase at the end of Turn 2.

4. In order to claim a tactical victory, the Austro-Imperial player must break two Prussian commands, including Braun’s command, by the end of Turn 12.

5. The Prussians may claim a tactical victory if they prevent the Austro-Imperial player from claiming victory.

Terrain Notes

The table-size for 15mm figures is 6′ x 8′, as indicated by the grid.  This assumes that you use the same base-sizes as me! 🙂 I use 60mm frontage for a battalion (80mm for a large battalion), so 4-5 battalions’ frontage per foot.

It’s worth noting that all maps of the battle disagree with each other, some markedly so!  I’ve gone mainly with Christopher Duffy’s map in his book ‘By Force of Arms’, as he seems to be the only one who has actually looked at a modern map with topographical contour lines.  However, I’ve added the small stream that is shown at the foot of the Prussian earthworks in all older maps of the battle.  While those maps are often wildly inaccurate in other respects, the contours do show a re-entrant in that location and Google Earth shows a ditch and culverts in that location, suggesting a stream that has been ‘canalised’.

Most terrain features function as per the terrain chart on Page 2 of the Tricorn QRS, but here are a few clarifications:

The hills are for the most part, gently rolling and do not provide a defender with a +1 melee modifier.  The exception is the ring-contour of the Dürren-Berg, which thanks to its ancient earthworks, is steeply banked.  It counts as a Linear Obstacle to cross and provides the defender with a +1 melee modifier, but no cover modifier.  The ring contour is big enough for roughly eight battalions to form a circle within it.

The Built-Up Sectors (BUS) marked on the map with thick edges are prepared for defence: namely the two southernmost sectors of Strehla and the villages of Klein-Rügeln and Clanzschwitz.  These BUS provide a defender with a +2 melee modifier.  All other BUS have a +1 melee modifier.

The Prussian earthworks are well-built and provide the defender with a +2 melee modifier.  Class as a linear obstacle to pass through (in reality there are covered gaps for units to pass through).  The old Swedish earthworks on the Otten-Berg can be ignored.

In terms of combat, infantry defending the earthworks may extend their firing-arc out to 45 degrees on either side, but suffer a -1 modifier if they do so (the earthworks are well-built and designed to enable enfilade fire, so defending units can mutually support each other).  Units defending the earthworks may claim flank and rear support, but attackers may only claim rear support.

It’s probably also worth reminding that units defending BUS may fire at opportunity targets in any direction as Skirmisher fire.  They may also conduct volley fire simultaneously at ALL units attacking the BUS, but do so with a -1 modifier.  They may not claim any support modifiers in melee, but the attackers may claim rear (not flank) support.

The Elbe is impassable to all troop-types.

The streams are very minor and class as linear obstacles, as per the QRS.

Note that no two maps of the battle agree on the layout of the road network around Strehla in 1760!  One modern map even shows a bridge over the Elbe, which there most definitely wasn’t and still isn’t! 🙂  There was a small ferry and the loop of the river could be forded at times of drought, but there was no bridge.  As 18th Century roads were largely irrelevant in terms of tactical combat I’ve left them off, but feel free to add them! 🙂


The deployment shown on the map above is only a rough approximation of where units and formations were historically positioned.  The labelled units are the ones where we’re reasonably confident of their location.  White indicate Austrian units, yellow indicates Imperial troops and blue indicates Prussians.

Note that at least one of the modern maps I referred to while researching this article shows Kleefeld on the Otten-Berg and Guasco attacking past Laas.  This is completely at odds with all accounts of the battle, which describe Guasco deploying his artillery on the Otten-Berg and Sand-Berg and getting bogged down in an artillery duel, while Kleefeld attacks the Dürren-Berg from the rear.  I’ll stick with Duffy’s version (and others), but feel free to swap Kleefeld and Guasco if you prefer.

The scenario map above should therefore only be used as a rough guide  to deployment and players may therefore adjust each formation within its rough deployment area, as shown on the map below (blue boxes being Prussian formation deployment areas and black boxes being Austro-Imperial formation deployment areas).

No units may be deployed on the east bank of the Elbe, even though one of the Prussian boxes slightly overlaps the east bank!

Prussian Corps of Generallieutenant Johann Dietrich von Hülsen

(Good – 2 Messengers)

Centre-Right (Entrenchments) (Good)
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Markgraf Carl’ (IR 19) (elite)     [5/2]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Markgraf Carl’ (IR 19) (elite)     [5/2]
Grenadier-Bataillon ‘Burgsdorff’ (38/43)     [5/2]
Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]

Centre-Left (Entrenchments) (Good)
I. Bn, Füsilier-Regiment ‘Salmuth’ (IR 48)     [4/1]
II. Bn, Füsilier-Regiment ‘Salmuth’ (IR 48)     [4/1]
I. Bn, Füsilier-Regiment ‘Grant’ (IR 44)     [4/1]
II. Bn, Füsilier-Regiment ‘Grant’ (IR 44)     [4/1]
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Alt-Schenckendorff’ (IR 22) (elite)     [5/2]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Alt-Schenckendorff’ (IR 22) (elite)     [5/2]
Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]

Right Wing (Dürren-Berg) – Generalmajor von Braun (Good)
Grenadier-Bataillon ‘Lubath’ (7/30)     [5/2]
Grenadier-Bataillon ‘Beyer’ (11/14)     [5/2]
IV. Stehende-Grenadier-Bataillon ‘Lossow’ (g1/g11)     [5/2]
I. Bn, (ex-Saxon) Füsilier-Regiment ‘Hauss’ (IR 55) (poor)     [3/0]
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Braunschweig-Bevern’ (IR 7) (elite)     [5/2]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Braunschweig-Bevern’ (IR 7) (elite)     [5/2]
Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Heavy Battery     [3/0]

Left Wing (Strehla & Klein-Rügeln) (Average)
Grenadier-Bataillon ‘Manstein’ (2/g2)     [5/2]
Detachment, (ex-Saxon) Füsilier-Regiment ‘Hauss’ (IR 55)     [Skirmishers]
II. Bn, Frei-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Wunsch’ (F 7)     [4/1]
Jäger Detachment, Frei-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Wunsch’ (FJ 7)     [Skirmishers]
Feldjäger Corps zu Fuss     [2x Skirmishers]
3 Sqns, Frei-Husaren-Corps ‘Kleist’ (FH II)     [4/1]
Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Cavalry – Oberst von Kleist (Excellent)
I. Bn (5 sqns), (‘Porzellan’) Dragoner-Regiment ‘Schorlemmer’ (DR 6)  [5/2 – Large Unit]
II. Bn (5 Sqns), (‘Porzellan’) Dragoner-Regiment ‘Schorlemmer’ (DR 6)  [5/2 – Large Unit]
I. Bn (5 Sqns), (‘Grünne’) Husaren-Regiment ‘Kleist’ (HR 1) (elite)     [5/2]
II. Bn (5 Sqns), (‘Grünne’) Husaren-Regiment ‘Kleist’ (HR 1) (elite)     [5/2]
4 Sqns, Frei-Dragoner-Regiment ‘Kleist’ (FD II)     [5/2]

Prussian Breakpoints

Division                         FMR     ⅓     ½     ¾

Centre-Right Infantry       23         8     12     18
Centre-Left Infantry          40         14   20     30
Left Wing                             21          7     11      16
Right Wing (Braun)           35        12     18     27
Cavalry (Kleist)                   25         9     13     19

Army                               FMR     ¼     ⅓     ½
Prussian Army                   144        36    48    72

Prussian Notes

1.  II. Bn, Frei-Regiment ‘Wunsch’ may alternatively be deployed as 2x Skirmishers. Note that it was an excellent unit of its type, so has MR 4/1, rather than the more usual MR 3/0 for Frei-Infanterie.

2.  Count two broken skirmisher stands from the same unit (or two independent skirmisher stands in the same formation) as 3 morale points (4 morale points for II./’Wunsch’).

3.  It’s impossible to fully represent the complex of angles and enfilades in well-engineered entrenchments of the period.  They were designed to provide mutual support and to enfilade any avenue of approach, thereby catching any attacker in a crossfire.  Therefore, infantry units deployed in the entrenchments may offset their flank-lines (i.e. increase their arc of fire to 45 degrees on either side).

4.  It is often difficult or even impossible to physically place infantry models in fortifications where artillery models are already present.  Therefore, any infantry unit in base-to-base contact to the rear of a battery in the entrenchments will class as defending the parapet of the entrenchments against attackers.  They may therefore fire volleys and conduct melee as normal, even when the artillery has already fired from the same position (in much the same way as infantry support batteries in the normal Tricorn rules).

5.  I’ve arbitrarily split the main part of Hülsen’s corps into two wings for game-play purposes.  I’ve no information on the historical brigade or divisional structure.  The Right Wing is weaker, as that sector had already detached battalions to reinforce the Dürren-Berg position.

6.  I can’t find any information on a single cavalry commander for the Prussians, so I’ve arbitrarily placed Oberst von Kleist (‘Green Kleist’) as overall cavalry commander, as he commanded the bulk of the cavalry, namely his own hussar regiment (HR 1) and the dragoons and hussars of his own Freikorps.  Alternatively, feel free to split off the two battalions of the ‘Schorlemmer’ Dragoons (DR 6) as a separate formation, under the command of their CO, Major Marschall von Bieberstein (Good).

Austro-Imperial Reichsarmee of Reichsmarschall Frederick Michael Count Palatine von Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld

(Poor – 2 Messengers)

Main Corps – Under direct command of Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld

Main Corps Infantry Left Wing (Poor)
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Mainz-Lamberg’     [4/1 – Large Unit]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Mainz-Lamberg’     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Rot-Würzburg’     [4/1 – Large Unit]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Rot-Würzburg’     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Bn, Swabian Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Baden-Baden’ (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Swabian Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Baden-Baden’ (poor)     [3/0]
I. Bn, Swabian Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Rodt’ (former ‘Fürstenberg’ IR) (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Swabian Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Rodt’ (former ‘Fürstenberg’ IR) (poor)     [3/0]
I. Bn, Swabian Kreis-Füsilier-Regiment ‘Alt-Württemberg’ [4/1]
I. Bn, Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurbayern’ (Bavarian I. Bn, ‘Pechmann’ IR) (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurbayern’ (Bavarian II. Bn, ‘Pechmann’ IR) (poor)     [3/0]
III. Bn, Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurbayern’ (Bavarian I. Bn, ‘Holnstein’ IR) (poor)     [3/0]
Mainz & Würzburg Battalion Guns (Austrian)     [2/0]
Swabian Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Kurbayern Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Main Corps Infantry Right Wing (Poor)
I. Bn, Kurrhein (Kurpfalz) Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Effern’ (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Kurrhein (Kurpfalz) Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Effern’ (poor)     [3/0]
Kurrhein (Kurköln) Leib-Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Nothaft’ (poor)     [3/0]
Kurrhein (Kurköln) Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Wildenstein’ (poor)     [3/0]
I. Bn, Kurrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurmainz’ (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Kurrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurmainz’ (poor) [3/0]
III. Bn, Kurrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurmainz’ (poor) [3/0]
IV. Bn, Kurrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurmainz’ (poor) [3/0]
II. Bn, Kurpfalz Garde-Regiment zu Fuß     [4/1]
Oberrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Hessen-Darmstädt (Prinz Georg)’     [4/1]
Kurpfalz Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Oberrhein Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Main Corps Cavalry – Obrist von Zedtwitz (Good)
3 Sqns, Franconian Kreis-Cuirassier-Regiment ’Bayreuth’ (unreliable cuirassiers)  [4/1]
3 Sqns, Kurrhein Kreis-Cuirassier-Regiment ’Kurpfalz’ (unreliable heavy horse)  [4/1]
5 sqns, Austrian Cuirassier-Regiment ‘Bretlach’ (C 29)     [6/2 – Large Unit]
5 Sqns, Austrian Cuirassier-Regiment ‘De Ville’ (C i)     [6/2 – Large Unit]

Imperial Artillery Reserve
Reichsreserveartillerie Heavy Battery     [3/0]
Reichsreserveartillerie Light Battery     [3/0]
Reichsreserveartillerie Light Battery     [3/0]

Prince Stolberg’s Reserve Corps

Reserve Corps Infantry – Feldmarschallieutenant von Würzburg (Poor)
I. Bn, Austrian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Macquire’ (IR 46)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Bn, Austrian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Luzan’ (IR 48)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
Austrian Grenadier-Bataillon (33/46/48 IRs)     [5/2]
I. Bn, Oberrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ (poor)     [3/0]
II. Bn, Oberrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Pfalz-Zweibrücken’ (poor)     [3/0]
I. Bn, Kurrhein Kreis-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Kurtrier’ (poor)    [3/0]
Austrian Battalion Guns     [2/0]
Kurtrier Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Reserve Corps Cavalry – Obrist Prinz von Nassau-Usingen (Average)
5 Sqns, Austrian Chevauxléger-Regiment ‘Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld’ (Ch 39)  [5/2 – Large Unit]
5 Sqns, Kurpfalz Leibdragoner-Regiment ‘Kurfürstin’ (poor dragoons)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
5 Sqns, Austrian Husaren-Regiment ‘Baranyay’ (H 30)     [4/1]

Austrian Auxiliary Corps – Generalfeldwachtmeister von Kleefeld (Good)
I. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Blau-Würzburg’      [4/1 – Large Unit]
II. Bn, Infanterie-Regiment ‘Blau-Würzburg’     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Bn, Hungarian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ (IR 33)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
II. Bn, Hungarian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ (IR 33)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
1 Bn, Grenz-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Banalisten Nr. 1’     [3/0]
1 Bn, Grenz-Infanterie-Regiment ‘Karlstädter-Szluiner’     [3/0]
Grenadier-Battaillon (Blau-Würzburg & Grenzer) (poor)     [4/1]
Austrian Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Grenadier & Carabinier Corps – Feldmarschallieutenant Guasco (Average)
I. Bn/ Austrian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Sachsen-Gotha’ (IR 30)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Bn/ Austrian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Pallavicini’ (IR 15)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
II. Bn/ Austrian Infanterie-Regiment ‘Pallavicini’ (IR 15)     [4/1 – Large Unit]
I. Kreis-Grenadier-Battaillon (Poor – Kurmainz, Effern & Baden-Baden IRs)     [4/1]
II. Kreis-Grenadier-Battaillon (Poor – Rodt, Kurköln & Kurbayern IRs)     [4/1]
III. Kreis-Grenadier-Battaillon (Hessen-Darmstädt, Pfalz Garde & Alt-Württemberg IRs)     [5/2]
Austrian Grenadier-Battaillon (Mainz-Lamberg & Austrian IRs)     [5/2]
4 Sqns, Swabian Kreis-Cuirassier-Regiment ‘Hohenzollern’ & 3 Austrian Elite Coys (poor cuirassiers)     [5/2]
Austrian Battalion Guns     [2/0]

Reichsarmee Breakpoints

Division                                              FMR     ⅓     ½     ¾

Main Corps Infantry (Left)                    47        16     24     36
Main Corps Infantry (Right)                 36        12     18      27
Imperial Artillery Reserve                       9          –        –        –
Main Corps Cavalry (Zedtwitz)             20          7      10      15
Reserve Infantry (Würzburg)               26          9      13      20
Reserve Cavalry (Nassau-Usingen)     13          5       7        10
Auxiliary Corps (Kleefeld)                     28        10      14      21
Grenadier Corps (Guasco)                     37        13      19      28

Army                                                   FMR     ¼      ⅓      ½
Reichsarmee                                            216       54      72     108

Reichsarmee Notes

1.  Grenzer battalions may alternatively be deployed as 2x Skirmisher stands. Count two broken skirmisher stands from the same unit as 3 morale points.

2.  Kleefeld’s grenadier battalion has been downgraded to MR 4/1 as it was weak and was 50% Grenzer.

3.  I’ve arbitrarily numbered Guasco’s grenadier battalions for game purposes. These were temporary units and would be known by the name of the officer designated to command them on the day, but they aren’t known. There were actually six four-company grenadier battalions under Guasco’s command, but I’ve reduced this to four six-company battalions for game purposes, as the four-company battalions were less than two-thirds the strength of a regular infantry battalion.

4.  The Austrian ‘Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld’ Chevauxléger Regiment (Ch 39) is a retitled Dragoon regiment (D 39) and is classed as Dragoons (MR 5/2) for movement, combat and morale purposes.

5.  One Light Battery of the Imperial Artillery Reserve is grouped with Guasco’s Corps. The remaining batteries are grouped with either wing of the Main Corps, at the player’s choice. The reserve batteries do not count against formation strength, but do count against overall army strength.

6.  The Hungarian ‘Nikolaus Esterházy’ Regiment (IR 33) was actually part of Würzburg’s division of the Reserve Corps, but joined Kleefeld’s attack on its colonel’s own initiative. I’ve therefore placed this regiment under Kleefeld’s command for scenario purposes.

7.  The ‘Baranyay’ Hussar Regiment (H 30) was listed as being part of Kleefeld’s corps. However, at Strehla it was operating alongside Colonel Prince Frederick August of Nassau-Usingen’s Chevauxlégers, covering the flank of Kleefeld’s attack. I’ve therefore transferred them from Kleefeld to Nassau-Usingen.

8.  I’ve arbitrarily split the infantry of Zweibrücken’s Main Corps into two wings for the sake of gameplay.  I’ve no information on the actual brigade or divisional structure or who the sub-commanders were.  Feel free to break it down into smaller formations if you prefer.

Posted in Eighteenth Century, Scenarios, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules), Tricorn Scenarios | 17 Comments

‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 7): More Imperial Auxiliary Regiments

Two years ago in Part 1 of this series, I profiled some auxiliary units from the Holy Roman Empire that were either raised under contract to serve with the Austrian Army or in the Saxons’ case, were placed under Austrian command following the wholesale surrender of the rest of their army.  Since then I’ve covered a few more such regiments, as well as a heap of Reichsarmee regiments.

This time I’ve got some more freshly-painted auxiliary units, namely the Würzburg ‘Blue’ Infantry Regiment and the Saxon Carabiniersgarde Regiment, but first I’m going to revisit a couple of previously-profiled units that have recently received a revamp:

Above:  I profiled the Mainz ‘Lamberg’ Regiment in detail in Part 5, so I won’t go over the details of uniform, etc again.  The reason I’m posting them again is that I’ve changed the flags to improved versions designed by David Morfitt, creator of the awesome Not By Appointment blog.

As discussed in the original article, this flag design is completely hypothetical as nothing whatsoever is currently known about the flags of any Mainz regiments.  My first set of flags for this regiment were downloaded from the venerable Warflag website, but David’s new version is drawn with a much higher level of detail and is textured to suggest rippling silk.  He’s also produced two versions of the blue-striped kompaniefahne; the first matches the original version, with the eagle on the obverse and a wreathed cypher on the reverse, while the second has the eagle on both sides.  I’ve gone for the version with the eagle on both sides (I like eagles!).

Above:  If you’re looking for a source of free SYW flags to print yourself, Not By Appointment should be your first port of call!  Thus far he has almost all Prussian infantry regimental flags on there, plus a few Prussian cavalry regiments, Austrian infantry flags (including lots of spectacular pre-Maria Theresa flags that were still being carried in the 1740s), a ton of French infantry and cavalry flags, a selection of Reichsarmee, Imperial, Spanish and Modenese flags and lots more besides.

I should add that the Mainz-Lamberg flags aren’t on his blog yet, but should appear very soon.  He posted them as an aside on the Seven Years War Wargaming Facebook page while discussing the flags of the Reichsarmee’s ‘Kurmainz’ Regiment, which are on his blog.

Above:  Another Imperial auxiliary regiment to recently get a new flag is the II. Battalion of the Pfalz (i.e. the Palatinate) Garde-Regiment zu Fuß, which I profiled in Part 4.  This regiment was hired for service with the Austrian army, but soon found itself posted to the Reichsarmee, to make up the shortfall in the Upper Saxon District (Obersachsischen-Kreis) contingent.

Above:  This new flag comes from the superb range of uniform plates and flags designed by Frédéric Aubert of Ad Hoc Éditions.  This flag is the 1760-63 Ordinärfahne.  The Pfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment is visible in the background, again using Frédéric’s flags (I’ll profile these in a later article).  The I. Battalion of the Garde zu Fuß (which remained on garrison duty throughout the war) would have carried a Leibfahne (white flag) identical to the one being carried by the ‘Effern’ Regiment in the background.  My original Pfalz flags were based on a written description of the flag design, but Frédéric has gone to remarkable lengths to find the actual designs for not only these flags, but also the radically different 1756-1759 pattern, which would have been carried by the Pfalz Auxiliary Corps fighting with the French from 1758-1759.

Above:  And so to the new regiments, starting with the Würzburg ‘Blue’ (Blau-Würzburg) Infantry Regiment.  As discussed in Part 1, this was one of two excellent regiments raised by the Prince-Bishopric of Würzburg to serve as auxiliaries with the Austrian Army; the first being the ‘Red’ Regiment (Rot-Würzburg) and this being the second.  Both regiments consisted of two strong battalions (each of six companies) and two detached grenadier companies, for a total of around 1,800 men per regiment.

Rot-Würzburg were the first regiment to be raised and were immediately sent to join the Mainz-Lamberg Regiment in the Prague Garrison.  They went on to fight with the Austrian field armies, finding fame in their heroic, doomed defence of Leuthen Church.  Blau-Würzburg meanwhile, instead of serving with an Austrian field army, initially found themselves defending the Reichsarmee’s recruiting grounds against Prussian raiders.  They were then sent as part of Austria’s contribution to the Reichsarmee as it joined with Marshal Soubise’s French army for the re-conquest of Saxony.  However, on 5th November 1757 the combined Franco-Imperial army was smashed by Frederick’s Prussians at the Battle of Rossbach.  As the army collapsed around them, only two regiments stood firm against the marauding Prussians; the Hessen-Darmstädt ‘Prinz Georg’ Regiment and the Blau-Würzburg Regiment.  These two regiments were singled out for praise by Soubise in his dispatches following the battle.

Above: After Rossbach, the Blau-Würzburg Regiment continued to serve with the Reichsarmee, consistently maintaining its reputation as a solid regiment when so many other regiments failed in their duties.  In 1760 the Rot-Würzburg Regiment (along with Mainz-Lamberg) were also assigned to support the Reichsarmee and so both Würzburg regiments fought at the Combat of Strehla, though they served in different corps.  Petty rivalries and animosity between the two regiments may have been a factor in keeping the two regiments apart, though in 1761 they had to set those animosities aside.

Both regiments had suffered heavy attritional losses in four years of war and Blau-Würzburg was now reduced to a single battalion and grenadier company, with Rot-Würzburg faring little better.  The Prince-Bishop of Würzburg was therefore forced to amalgamate the two regiments.  The amalgamated regiment consisted of one field battalion and grenadier company from each former regiment, plus a depot battalion drawn from Rot-Würzburg and was officially titled ‘Imperial Würzburg’ or Kaiserlisch-Würzburg.  The field battalions were designated as 1st & 3rd Battalions, while the depot battalion was designated as the 2nd Battalion.  Some sources refer to the regiment having three battalions in the field, but this may be caused by the curious 3rd Battalion designation of the second field battalion.

On 29th October 1762, the Kaiserlisch-Würzburg Regiment fought with the Reichsarmee at the last great battle of the war, at Freiburg.  Although a defeat for the Austrian-Imperial army, many previously-disgraced Reichsarmee regiments finally redeemed themselves at Freiburg.  However, the Kaiserlisch-Würzburg Regiment suffered terrible losses (almost 500 men).  After Freiburg it was decided to send the regiment as part of a small corps to the Austrian Netherlands, to seize the small Prussian enclaves in Westphalia.  However, the war ended before that plan could be enacted and the regiment was disbanded in 1763.

Above:  The uniform of the Blau-Würzburg Regiment consisted of Austrian-style white coat and smallclothes, with dark blue lapels, cuffs, linings and shoulder-strap and no collar or lace.  Buttons were white metal.  Neck-stocks were red.  Hats had white lace and pompoms and black cockades.  Grenadiers wore bearskins with a blue bag, piped white.  Officers had silver hat-lace and yellow sashes.  Drummers had the same coat, though with dark blue swallows’-nests at the shoulders.

There are however, some variations in sources, such as the Becher Manuscript (shown here on the right), which shows white coat-linings (shown at the tail-turnbacks), black neck-stocks and no hat pompoms.  Other sources show blue-over-white pompoms.

These are Eureka Miniatures 18mm figures and the lovely flags are by David at Not By Appointment, printed on my own laser-printer.

Above:  I must confess that my second ‘new’ regiment, the Saxon Carabiniersgarde Regiment, is already in my collection, courtesy of my late friend Doug, as described in Part 1.  I did say then that I wouldn’t dishonour them by replacing them and I still won’t…  They’re going off to a well-deserved retirement…  That’s what I tell myself, anyway (sorry Doug!)…  What happened was that I really wanted a full twelve-figure unit and I had twelve Austrian cuirassiers spare… 🙁

Above:  Saxony was very quickly knocked out of the war by Frederick’s invasion of 1756, with the Saxon Army being conscripted en masse into the Prussian Army.  However, a number of regiments remained within Saxon-ruled Poland and the King of Saxony placed a number of these under Austrian command, namely the Carabiniersgarde, the Graf Renard Uhlans, the Graf Rudnicki Uhlans, the Graf Brühl Chevauxlégers, the Prinz Carl Chevauxlégers and the Prinz Albrecht Chevauxléxlegers.

As described in Part 1, the Carabiniersgarde Regiment was one of two Saxon guard cuirassier regiments, the other being the Garde du Corps.  It had been assigned to the Warsaw Garrison since 1754 and therefore escaped the surrender of the main Saxon Army at Pirna in 1756.  At full ‘paper’ strength the regiment had 514 men organised into four squadrons, though the contingent sent to join Marshal Daun’s Austrian army in Bohemia initially had only around 350 men organised into two squadrons, hence why Doug only did a small eight-figure unit.  I did speculate in Part 1 that the rest were possibly kept back to garrison Warsaw, but from further reading it’s clear that the remaining two squadrons did march to join the advance-party, as all four squadrons are listed in later battles and the strength had risen to over 800 men (well above ‘paper’ strength) by 1759.

Pedants’ Corner:  Marco Pagan, in his two-volume work on the Saxon Army, Between Scylla & Charybdis, spells the regimental title as Karabiniersgarde/Carabiniersgarde with an ‘s’ in the middle of the word, so I’ve gone with that.

Above:  On campaign the Carabiniersgarde typically wore a pale straw coller (also called a collet or ledercoller), being a tight-fitting buckskin coat with short tails, very much like the style of coat worn by Austrian and especially Prussian cuirassiers.  A red waistcoat was worn beneath the coller.  A black-enameled cuirass edged with red cloth, was worn over the coller, being secured at the back with white straps.  The coller had red cuffs, pale straw shoulder-straps and a strip of red-white-red lace down the edge of both front-seams, which then continued around the edge of the otherwise pale straw turnbacks.

In full dress and/or cold weather, a voluminous white top-coat was worn over the coller and cuirass.  This had a red collar, cuffs, linings and turnbacks.  I’ve used two officer figures wearing the white top-coat over their cuirass, which helps to make the unit look a little less ‘Prussian’.  Kronoskaf says that the buttons were pewter, but this seems to be at odds with the general ‘yellow metal’ theme and other sources say brass.  Officers had gold buttonhole lace on the breast and cuffs of the top-coat, as well as gold lace edging to the coller and waistcoat and gold decoration on the cuirass.  NCOs had gold edging to their cuffs.  The whole regiment had metallic gold lace edging on its hats, which were further decorated with white cockades and red corner-rosettes.  Belts were white, scabbards were black with brass fittings and horse-furniture was red, edged with narrow strips of red and yellow lace (all gold for officers).  Trumpeters wore reversed colours, heavily decorated with lace on the breast and sleeves.

I took the flag from the Kronoskaf article and printed it off.  However, I’ve just bought Frédéric’s new set of Saxon flags, so may well replace it with his version.

That’s it for now!  I’m just in the process of finishing off my Reichsarmee and starting Kleist’s Freikorps for the Prussians, so there’s plenty more SYW stuff to come, including a Strehla refight in April, when the massed Reichsarmee will finally get onto the table! 🙂 I’ve also got a couple of AWI game reports to come, including last Saturday’s refight of Brandywine.  No spoilers, but once again I’m left wondering if this is perhaps the hobby for me…?

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Seven Years War Minor German States, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 10 Comments

‘All The Emperor’s Men’ (Part 6): SYW Austrian Artillery & Staff

Field Marshal Daun, with his staff on Przerovsky Hill, Kolin 1757 |  Guerres, Guerre, Xvie siècleFollowing my recent flurry of Napoleonic units (namely the Russian Mounted Jäger and Swedish artillery), I’ve returned to ploughing through the Seven Years War units in my Lead Dungeon, with a particular emphasis on finishing the Reichsarmee, followed by Kleist’s (Prussian) Freikorps.

The plan is to do a refight of the Combat of Strehla 1760 at the Carmarthen Old Guard‘s monthly Big Game Saturday on 15th April, for which I’ll need the vast majority of the Reichsarmee and part of Kleist’s Freikorps.  So far, so good; Since the start of February I’ve painted twelve Reichsarmee infantry battalions and two grenadier battalions and have two grenadier battalions, five guns and a dragoon regiment left to do for the Reichsarmee at Strehla, along with some dragoons, hussars and jäger for Kleist’s Freikorps, plus ‘Green Kleist’ himself.  I’ve also re-flagged a few units with some superb new flags and have re-based my older Reichsarmee battalions onto single bases (I need to do the same with my Prussians).

But more of that later… Back in December and January I did a load of painting in preparation for our epic refight of the Battle of Kolin 1757, but haven’t posted those units here yet, so thought I’d better catch up with them before showing off the new stuff!

Above:  I must confess that this first unit was painted quite a bit earlier than December!  In June last year we were preparing to do our large refight of the Battle of Leuthen 1757.  At the time I had quite a sever deficiency of Austrian guns, particularly of light battalion guns.  I had (and still have!) a massive stash of spare Old Glory 15s Austrian artillery figures from the days when they were sold in bags of 100 figures (I think the artillery bags were 15 guns and 60 figures?).  This stash reached epic proportions when I discovered that the Old Glory ‘French’, ‘British’ and ‘Hanoverian’ artillery packs were in fact just the Austrian pack with a different label…  These figures were then supplemented by six Austrian 3pdr guns from Blue Moon Miniatures.

Above:  The subject of Austrian artillery uniform during the mis-18th Century is an insanely complicated subject, with sources being utterly at odds with each other, describing dark brown, light brown, grey, dark grey, ‘wolf grey’ and even white coats.  The majority view however, now seems to be that the uniform was brown, being a much paler, greyish shade of brown than the darker, earth-brown shade used during the Napoleonic Wars and FAR paler than the dark coffee-brown shade used during the mid-19th Century.  The shade was known as Rehrbraun or ‘Fawn Brown’.  There is also some suggestion that the descriptor ‘Wolf Grey’ does actually mean a light, greyish-brown.  I use Humbrol 29 Dark Earth, with quite a lot of white mixed in.

The cuffs were Feuer-rot or ‘Fire Red’, being a bright shade of red.  There was no collar or lace, apart from the hat-lace, which was yellow.  The shoulder-strap was fawn brown, buttons were yellow metal and the neck-stock was black.  Gaiters were black and the powder-flask was suspended from a yellow-black cord worn over the left shoulder, the tassel of which often looked like a fringed epaulette on the shoulder.  A triangular black primer-box with a brass plate was worn on the belly and on campaign could have a white linen cover.

There were some uniform differences between the Austrian Netherlands’ artillery and the ‘German’ artillery; The Netherlands Artillery had red lapels and linings/turnbacks, whereas the German Artillery had no lapels and their linings/turnbacks were brown.

Above:  In January I realised that despite having painted all that artillery for the Leuthen game, I STILL didn’t have enough guns for our forthcoming Kolin refight!  I therefore ordered some Austrian 3/6pdrs from Eureka and in a moment of fuckwittery, ordered some more Austrian gunners, despite still having a gigantic stash of Old Glory figures (in the meantime I’ve used my stash to provide crews for all my Reichsarmee and Schamburg-Lippe guns and I STILL have 17 figures left)!  Ah well, the Eureka gunners are lovely figures.

Above:  The Austrians always painted their gun-carriages a deep yellow-ochre shade that actually seems to have been more yellow than ochre.  Ironwork was painted black.  The standard Liechtenstein Pattern guns had polished brass barrels.

Above:  My old Austrian army headquarters group was starting to show its age and most worryingly, the horses were starting to break at the ankles.  I therefore needed to do a new staff group in time for the Kolin game.  These fellas were therefore done at breakneck-speed on the day before the game.  They’re all Eureka figures.

Above:  Two staff officers discuss what type of biscuits to have in the Mess during Afternoon Tea.  The troops at the back are the newly-painted Pfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment; I’ll cover them in detail in a future article.

Above:  With the glue under the flock still drying, Feldmarschall Daun establishes his headquarters atop the Przerovsky Hill, during our Kolin refight.  The cloaked general is an Old Glory 15s figure painted by me.  The two hussar couriers are Old Glory 15s conversions painted many years ago by Gareth Beamish.  The Austrian infantry are Lancashire Games figures, again painted by Gareth, with new flags by Fighting 15s, added by me a couple of years ago.

Above:  For our Leuthen refight I needed a couple of Hungarian generals (Nádasdy and Forgách).  I had some spare senior hussar officers/generals in my stash, which I think came out of the Old Glory 15s Austrian Generals pack back in the 90s, when they had 30 mounted figures per pack (nowadays you get nine figures in the pack and I think they’re a random selection from the original 30).

Kronoskaf shows an all-white, gold-encrusted hussar uniform with brown fur and busby with red bag and white egret-feather plume.  However, all the portraits of Hungarian generals from the era (such as Hadik shown on the right) show red dolman (or waistcoat) and breeches instead of white, so I’ve gone for the red option.  As it happens, this was still the full-dress uniform for Hungarian generals during the Napoleonic Wars, so they could do double-duty. 🙂

Anyway, that’s it for now.  Stacks more SYW stuff to come, as well as some AWI action.

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War Austrian Army, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | Leave a comment

Napoleonic Reinforcements: Swedish Corps Commander & Artillery

As I was on a roll with the reasonably obscure Russian Mounted Jäger, I decided to continue the theme of obscure Napoleonic subjects with some Swedes.

As briefly mentioned during my discussion of my Swedish army for the Seven Years War, I do actually own the complete Swedish Corps for 1813, organised for Napoleon’s Battles rules.  This amounts to five 24-figure infantry brigade-units and two 16-figure cavalry units.  We’re not exactly spoilt for choice with decent 15mm Swedish Napoleonic figures, so this army represents the last gasp of Minifigs figures in my collection.  I might post some pictures of them here one day… Or maybe not…

However, I recently noticed that the corps commander and three artillery batteries had disappeared since their last outing some 15 years ago, so I ordered some new artillery crew from Old Glory 15s and rummaged around in my AB figures spares box to find some figures that might serve as a Swedish general and his staff.  Let’s start with the artillery…

Above:  As was the case with their grand-dads during the Seven Years War, the artillery arm of the Swedish Army wore what was quite possibly the most boring uniform of the age…

For the Svea Artillerieregimente, this uniform was plain blue with buff belts and brass buttons.  The Vendes Artillerieregimente jazzed this up with a white collar and the Göta Artillerieregimente were positively psychedelic with a yellow collar.  Uniformology rarely gets any more exciting than this…

During the 1813 Campaign, the Göta Regiment provided the two 6pdr foot batteries supporting the Swedish Corps’ 1st Division, while the Svea Regiment provided the 6pdr foot batteries supporting the 2nd Division and the foot batteries (one 12pdr battery and a 6pdr battery) of the corps reserve.  The Wendes Regiment provided two horse batteries for the corps’ cavalry brigade.

Above:  These are most definitely not the best models in the world, but they look the part with their distinctive Swedish round-hats, resplendent with yellow plumes and cockades! 🙂

Note that the officers have white ‘brassards’ wrapped around their left arms.  While such items were fairly common during the period as a field-sign to identify friendly troops (especially when fighting as a coalition, such as in 1813), these were a traditional feature of Swedish officers’ dress at least as far back as the Seven Years War, as seen in this 1798 portrait of General Stedingk, the general officer commanding the Swedish Corps in 1813.

Above:  There is some disagreement regarding the colour of Swedish gun-carriages.  during the 18th Century they had traditionally been painted light blue with yellow fittings (whether yellow metal or painted yellow is a matter of debate), though the fittings were painted black by the time of the Napoleonic Wars.

However… My trusty old Rawkins booklet said that Swedish gun-carriages of the era were painted ‘bluish-green’.  This is at odds with the Swedish Army Museum at Stockholm, which displays a 6pdr gun on an original light blue carriage, which saw action at Leipzig in 1813.  A series of prints from 1825 (one of which is shown here), also clearly shows light blue carriages still in use.  I had originally painted my Minifigs artillery in dark blue-green, but decided this time to go with light blue for the replacements.

Above:  As mentioned above, I decided to go rummaging through the AB figures Lead Dungeon for my General Stedingk.  I wanted an officer in a cocked hat with a tall plume and decided to use a spare British officer figure.

However, in retrospect, I think he’s too ‘campaigny’ for a Swedish general (compare to the Knötel picture at the top of this article and the painting on the right) and the double-breasted coat and cross-belt don’t really work.  I’ll probably replace him with an 1806 Prussian officer or maybe do some *gasp* ‘modelling’ and stick an 1806 Prussian head on a French general’s body.  Ah well… It was worth trying…

I’m happier with his entourage, however.  I used two 1806 Prussian cavalry figures; an officer of hussars wearing mirliton and an officer of dragoons.

The hussar officer is painted as an officer of the Mörner Hussar Regiment and as can be seen, he fits the bill really well.  The only inaccuracy is that his plume is on the wrong side, but I bet you didn’t notice until I pointed it out! 🙂

I actually have the Mörner Hussars (Minifigs models) in my Swedish Corps, but they are all wearing shakos, with plumes on the left side, which seems to be confirmed by one or two eyewitness watercolour paintings.

It seems that the Mörner Hussar Regiment probably deployed to Germany wearing mirlitons, but then transitioned to shakos (or perhaps the mirlitons were retained for full dress?).  Much the same thing happened in the infantry, with round-hats in many units apparently being replaced during the campaign by both French-style and Russian-style shakos.

This hussar figure was in the spares box due to having a broken sabre, but after carving the remains of the sword off his hand he just looks like he’s pulling at the reigns with both hands and the fact that his scabbard is empty is hardly noticeable, so I’m perfectly happy with him.

Above:  The third figure in the group is painted as an officer of the Skånska Carabinier Regiment.  Nafziger and others list this regiment as being present in 1813 (though not at Leipzig), though other source suggest it may have been converted to hussars in 1807.  To be honest, I lost the will to live by this point and given the general blue & yellow scheme, he could be an officer of the Swedish general staff (for whom I’ve never found any uniform information), so what the heck… 😉

As a ‘gentleman’ said to me on a Facebook Napoleonic Wargaming page this week, “If you can’t be bothered to get it right, you may as well be playing Warhammer…”

Ah well, in that case, The Emperor Protects… 😉

Posted in 15mm Figures, Napoleonic Minor States, Napoleonic Wars, Painted Units | 4 Comments