‘King George Commands And We Obey’ (Part 6: Regiments of Horse and Dragoon Guards)

Please try to control your excitement and do not adjust your set, but here are some more British cavalry regiments for the Seven Years War!

As discussed last time, I had the sudden urge late last year, to paint all the British cavalry regiments for the Battle of Warburg, essentially doubling what I already had painted (for the Battle of Minden, as shown in Part 3).  That now leaves me with only one British cavalry regiment left to paint; the 15th Light Dragoons (Eliott’s) and once that’s done I may as well paint the remaining ten British infantry battalions as well (the 5th, 8th, 11th, 24th, 33rd & 50th Regiments of Foot, Daulhat’s Grenadier Battalion and the 2nd Battalions of the 1st, 2nd & 3rd Foot Guards).

In Part 5 I looked at the three extra Dragoon regiments (1st, 7th & 11th) I painted for Warburg, as well as Colonel Edward Harvey of the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons.  This time I’m looking at the 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (‘The Bays’), 3rd Horse (‘Carabiniers’) and 4th Horse (‘The Black Horse’).  These are all Eureka Miniatures 18mm figures, with flags by Maverick Models.

If you’re interested, the painting (by Simkin) above shows the 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards at Warburg, being led forward in the charge by the Marquess of Granby (the distant figure dressed in blue).  If you weren’t interested… I don’t care… 😉

Above:  The 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (‘The Bays’).  The three regiments of Dragoon Guards originally started life as regiments of Horse (i.e. heavy, shock cavalry, the equivalent of Cuirassiers in other armies) and were still known as such during the first half of the 1740s.  However, with the War of Austrian Succession becoming ruinously expensive, the Army was desperate to save pennies wherever it could and the regiments of Horse were becoming an expense that could no longer be sustained.  They cost far more to maintain than the regiments of Dragoons, who were increasingly being asked to perform the same shock cavalry role and performing it admirably.  Therefore, in 1746 the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Regiments of Horse became the new 1st, 2nd and 3rd Regiments of Dragoon Guard (some sources say that Christmas Day 1745 was the actual date of transformation).  They would still perform the same role, though would now be paid exactly the same as the Dragoons.  The title ‘Dragoon Guards’ was created as a salve to their wounded pride.

However, not all regiments of Horse were converted to Dragoon Guards.  The 1st Horse (‘The Blues’) became the new Royal Horse Guards.  The 5th, 6th, 7th & 8th Regiments of Horse meanwhile, were part of the Irish Establishment and Dublin simply refused to allow the change.  These regiments therefore became the new 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Regiments of Horse, though remained junior in order of precedence to the Dragoon Guards.

The 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards by Simkin (after Morier)

The 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (‘The Bays’), despite having the formal title ‘Queen’s’ and the nickname ‘Bays’, were frequently referred to in the old manner, by the name of their Colonel.  The Colonel at the start of the war was the Honourable William Herbert, though when he died in 1757 the title passed to Lord George Sackville.  However, following Sackville’s disgrace and dismissal from the Army following the Battle of Minden in 1759, the title passed to the Honourable John Waldegrave.  I profiled my Sackville figure in Part 2 of this series; I should have said then that he could equally be used on-table as Waldegrave, who became a key cavalry commander in the latter half of the Seven Years War in Germany.

The regiment was organised the same as most other British cavalry regiments of the period; in six troops, grouped into two squadrons.  As in the Dragoon regiments, a seventh (Light) Troop was added during the 1750s.  In 1759 and just before deployment to Germany, the regiment is recorded as fielding 390 men in the six ‘heavy’ troops, though it isn’t clear if this includes the officers, SNCOs, musicians, etc (these were often not included in strength-returns and the term ‘men’ often just refers to a regiment’s non-specialist Privates and Corporals).  This was probably augmented again before deployment, so the regiment probably fielded around 400 men in Germany, much the same as most other regiments.  The Light Troop at full strength is recorded as having 100 men of all ranks, though this wasn’t deployed to Germany, instead staying in Britain and occasionally being deployed with other Light Troops on amphibious expeditions around the French coast.

Above:  The 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (‘The Bays’).  Although it’s true that their role didn’t change when they became Dragoon Guards, the uniform did change to the Dragoon style, though with the addition of infantry-style lapels to the coat.  The British Army actually called these ‘half-lapels’, to distinguish them from the ‘full’ lapels, extending down the full length of the coat, as worn by the regiments of Horse.  Buttonhole lace and aiguillettes were the same as the Dragoons (though now displayed on the lapels), including the chevrons of lace on cuffs, sleeves and coat-tails.  They also wore the single Dragoon-style cross-belt, buckled at the front (as mentioned before, I should have used Dragoon figures and painted on the lapels, but I foolishly bought Horse figures with their double, unbuckled cross-belts).

The regiment had buff facings and yellow ‘metal’.  The regimental lace (edging the horse-furniture and decorating the musicians’ uniforms) was yellow with a black central stripe.  Although their role had not theoretically changed from that of the Horse, there is no record of the Dragoon Guards ever receiving an issue of breast-plates when they were deployed to Germany, whereas the Royal Horse Guards and Regiments of Horse most definitely did.  They may however, have worn ‘secrets’ (iron skull-caps) in their hats, as possibly did the Dragoons.  Perhaps unsurprisingly, the regiment rode bay horses, hence their nickname of ‘The Bays’ or ‘The Queen’s Bays’.

The Dragoon Guards did not have trumpeters.  Instead they had Dragoon-style drummers, plus kettle-drummers and oboists.  These musicians wore livery-coats in reversed colours, with lots of regimental lace, topped off with mitre-caps.  Musicians of all regiments typically rode grey horses and kettle-drummers’ horses typically had undocked tails, whereas the rest of British cavalry horses had docked tails (a detail observed in these lovely models by Eureka)

In terms of flags, the 1st Squadron of each regiment of Dragoon Guards carried a square, crimson King’s Standard (as seen in the painting at the top), while the 2nd Squadron (and 3rd Squadron in the 1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards) carried a swallow-tailed Regimental Guidon matching the facing colour.  I’ve given these fellas the buff Regimental Guidon.

Above:  The 3rd & 4th Regiments of Horse.  I’ve mentioned it before, but as most British cavalry regiments were rather small affairs, consisting of six troops, organised into two squadrons and typically numbering around 350-400 men in the field, I group two such units together to make a ‘unit’ in Tricorn.  The same goes for Hanoverian Horse and Hessian Horse.

Regiments stationed in Ireland were typically maintained at a very low establishment and in 1759 the 3rd and 4th Regiments of Horse had only 120 men apiece (this probably doesn’t include sergeants, officers, regimental staff and musicians).  However, this was increased in 1760 in anticipation for their move to Germany and each troop was brought up to around 60 men of all ranks, for a total of 360-370 men in each of the two regiments.  This was further augmented at Dublin with men and horses from regiments not being deployed to Germany, so they were probably deployed to Germany with around 400 men each.

Above:  The 3rd Regiment of Horse (‘Carabiniers’).  This regiment had a long history, being first raised in 1685 as the ‘Queen Dowager’s Regiment of Horse, ranked 9th in seniority.  By 1691 the regiment was ranked 8th and known as ‘The King’s Regiment of Carbineers’.  Following the War of Spanish Succession, the regiment was transferred to the Irish Establishment and ranked 7th, sometimes being referred to as the ‘Irish Horse’.  However, from 1740 to 1742 it was briefly known as ‘His Majesty’s 1st Regiment of Carabiniers’, before reverting to the ‘7th Regiment of Horse (Carabiniers)’.  At last, in 1746, following the conversion of the 1st to 4th Regiments of Horse into the Royal Horse Guards and Dragoon Guards, the 7th Horse was renumbered as the 3rd Regiment of Horse.  The Colonel of the regiment throughout the Seven Years War was Major General Louis Dejean and the regiment was sometimes therefore referred to as ‘Dejean’s Horse’.

Above:  The 3rd Regiment of Horse (‘Carabiniers’).  The Regiments of Horse wore coats with ‘full’ lapels; i.e. extending all the way down the front of the coat.  These are often hidden when the skirts of the coat were turned back to form ‘tails’, but it can be clearly seen on officers’ coats, which weren’t normally turned back.  The lapels were decorated with buttonhole lace all the way to the bottom.  The tails were also decorated with buttonhole lace, though this was in straight ‘bars’, not arranged in chevrons like the lace of the Dragoons and Dragoon Guards.  The cuffs were decorated with four vertical lace buttonholes and there was no lace on the sleeves.  The coat had two red shoulder-straps and no aiguillette.  The Horse wore two buff cross-belts without buckles; the extra belts suspended the sword-scabbard, which was worn outside the coat.  Small-clothes were in the facing colour and the waistcoat was decorated with buttonhole lace.  On campaign, an iron breastplate was worn beneath the coat, plus an iron ‘secret’ (skull-cap) under the hat.

The 3rd Regiment of Horse (Carabiniers) by Morier (sadly these is no colour version available)

The facing colour for the 3rd Horse was pale yellow and the ‘metal’ colour was white.  Regimental lace was white with a red central stripe.  I haven’t been able to discover the colour of the regiment’s horses, but regiments of heavy Horse typically had dark horses and the black and white photo of the Morier painting (above) looks very dark, so I’ve gone with black horses.

Above:  The 3rd Regiment of Horse (‘Carabiniers’).  Regiments of Horse were served by trumpeters and kettle-drummers.  These wore livery in reversed colours, heavily decorated with regimental lace, though wore hats instead of the mitre-caps worn by the musicians of Dragoons and Dragoon Guards.

Regiments of Horse carried square standards.  The 1st Squadron carried the crimson King’s Standard, while the 2nd Squadron carried the facing-coloured Regimental Standard.  I’ve used the Regimental Standard here.

Above:  The 4th Regiment of Horse (‘The Black Horse’).  This regiment was first formed in 1688 as ‘Devonshire’s Regiment of Horse’, ranked 10th.  By 1690 this had become ‘Schomberg’s Horse’, ranked 9th and by 1691 it had become ‘Leinster’s Horse’.  Within a year, the Duke of Leinster became the Duke of Schomberg, so the regiment reverted to being ‘Schomberg’s Horse’ and in 1694 was ranked 8th.  In 1713 the regiment was transferred to the Irish Establishment and in 1721 became ‘Ligonier’s Horse’.  In 1746, with the creation of the Royal Horse Guards and Dragoon Guards, the regiment became the 4th Regiment of Horse, with the semi-official nickname of ‘The Black Horse’ for the colour of its facings.  In 1754 the Colonelcy passed to Major General Henry Seymour Conway and in 1759 it passed again to Major General Phillip Honeywood.

Above:  The 4th Regiment of Horse (‘The Black Horse’).  As mentioned above, the regiment’s facing colour was black and this was displayed on cuffs, ‘full’ lapels and cloak-linings.  However, most unusually, the linings of the coat (revealed by the tail-turnbacks), small-clothes and horse-furniture didn’t match the facings and instead were coloured buff (often depicted as a fairly dark buff, almost brown).  The ‘metal’ colour was yellow and regimental lace was white with a central black stripe.  On campaign an iron breastplate was worn beneath the coat and a ‘secret’ was worn beneath the hat.  The regiment’s horses were (unsurprisingly) black.

The 4th Regiment of Horse by Morier (note the ‘full’ lapels, extending all the way down the front of the coat, though partly hidden by the turnbacks)

Above:  The 4th Regiment of Horse (‘The Black Horse’).  As with the coat-linings, small-clothes and horse-furniture, the ‘reversed colour’ livery-coats of the regimental musicians most unusually didn’t match the black facing-colour and were instead coloured buff, heavily decorated with the regimental lace.

Again, I’ve used the 2nd Squadron’s Regimental Standard, which was black.

Right, that’s it!  I’m off to Italy now! 🙂

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War British & Hanoverian Armies, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 23 Comments

‘King George Commands And We Obey’: My 15mm SYW British Army (Part 5: Dragoons)

As discussed in Part 3 of this series, I was originally using the Allied order of battle for the Battle of Minden 1759 as my painting ‘To Do’ list for the ‘Western Allied’ armies (Great Britain, Hanover, Hesse-Cassel, Brunswick and Schaumburg-Lippe).  However, as discussed in Part 4 this can be rather limiting, in that the British Army in Germany more than doubled in size following the victory at Minden, so the later battles often have a very different mix of British units.  This was certainly the case at the Battle of Warburg 1760, as only half of the the British cavalry at that battle had been present at Minden.

The first wave of British cavalry sent to Germany in 1758 comprised the following regiments:

3 Sqns, Royal Horse Guards (‘The Blues’)
3 Sqns, 1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards (Bland’s)
2 Sqns, 3rd Dragoon Guards (Howard’s)
2 Sqns, 2nd (Royal North British) Dragoons (‘The Greys’) (Argyll’s)
2 Sqns, 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons (Cholmondley’s)
2 Sqns, 10th Dragoons (Mordaunt’s)

The second wave of British cavalry sent to Germany in 1760 consisted of these regiments:

2 Sqns, 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (‘The Bays’) (Waldegrave’s)
2 Sqns, 3rd Regiment of Horse (‘Carabiniers’) (Dejean’s)
2 Sqns, 4th Regiment of Horse (‘The Black Horse’) (Honeywood’s)
2 Sqns, 1st (Royal) Dragoons (Conway’s)
2 Sqns, 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons (Cope’s until 1760, then Mostyn’s)
2 Sqns, 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s)
3 Sqns, 15th Light Dragoons (‘Eliott’s Light Horse’)

For our recent refight of Warburg, I therefore had to paint an additional six regiments of British cavalry as all but one of the British cavalry regiments deployed to Germany were present at that battle.  The 15th Light Dragoons were the sole absent regiment and are therefore the last remaining unpainted regiment.

I’ll cover the new Dragoon Guards and Horse next time, but here are the new Dragoons.  These are all 18mm Eureka figures, with flags by Maverick Models.

Above: At Warburg, the 1st (Royal) Dragoons (Conway’s) and 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons (Cope’s) were assigned to Spörcken’s Corps, brigaded with Hanoverian Dragoons and Hessian Horse and weren’t therefore involved in famous charge of the British cavalry led by The Marquess of Granby.  They did however, make a decisive, albeit little-known charge of their own on the left flank of the French army at Warburg that destroyed several French battalions.

As discussed here before, British regiments of Dragoons, Dragoon Guards and Horse were (with a few exceptions) pretty small, usually consisting of only two squadrons, each of three troops, totaling some 357 men at the start of the war.  This was soon expanded to around 390 men in 1758/59 and expanded again when transferred to Germany.  The average strength on campaign would appear to have been around 400 men and the 1st Dragoons are recorded as reaching 450 men (544 men when the undeployed Light Troop are included).  By contrast, there were only around 240-280 men in a two-squadron French cavalry regiment.

Dragoon Regiments also added a Light Troop just prior to the start of the war.  However, this was not normally deployed with the main part of the regiment, often being grouped with other Light Troops in support of amphibious operations around the French coast.  I’m not aware of any Dragoon Regiment Light Troops being deployed in Germany.  Light Troops initially consisted of 71 men, though were soon expanded to over 100 men.

In Tricorn, a 12-figure ‘unit’, as shown above, therefore represents two (6-figure) Dragoon Regiments, totaling around 750-800 men.  However, for the sake of clarity, I’ll show each 6-figure regiment individually below.

Above:  The 1st (Royal) Dragoons Even though the 1st Dragoons had the title ‘Royal’, the regiment was still sometimes referred to in the ‘old manner’, by the name of it’s Colonel.  The 1st Dragoons were therefore known as ‘Hawley’s’ for Major-General Henry Hawley until 1759, then ‘Conway’s’ for the Hon Henry Seymour Conway for the rest of the war.  While the main part of the regiment was in Germany, the regiment’s Light Troop was detached and took part in two amphibious expeditions to the French coast.

1st (Royal) Dragoons by David Morier

Above:  The 1st (Royal) Dragoons.  All regiments of dragoons had coats without lapels, though with facing-coloured ‘gorget-patches’ where the top of the front-seam meets the collar (as clearly shown on the painting above).  Cuffs and linings were in the regimental facing colour.  The breast of the coat was decorated with buttonhole lace in the regimental ‘metal’ colour (the number and spacing of lace loops varied from regiment to regiment).  Buttons were placed in a single vertical row up the sleeves and up the tails, with a chevron of metal-coloured lace extending on each side of the button.  A metal-coloured aiguillette was worn on the right shoulder and a red shoulder-strap on the left.  Small-clothes always matched the facing-colour and the waistcoat was also decorated with buttonhole lace.  Hats were edged in ‘metal’ colour and had a black cockade secured with a button.  Neck-stocks were white.

Above:  The 1st (Royal) Dragoons.  The 1st Royal Dragoons had dark blue facings, yellow ‘metal’ and rode black horses.  The horse-furniture would normally be coloured in the facing-colour, though the 1st Dragoons were an exception, having red horse-furniture, reflecting the Royal Livery worn by the regiment’s drummers (red coats with blue facings and heavily laced in strips of gold-yellow with a central dark blue (or possibly purple) strip.  The drummers’ bandoliers and the edging of the horse-furniture were always coloured to match the lace.

Drummers wore short mitre-caps with a red ‘bag’, blue band and blue front-piece, piped gold-yellow and heavily embroidered, typically with a crowned drum, Order of the Garter, GR cypher or other badge, surrounded by foliage and piled trophies of war.  Above the brow was the usual red ‘false flap’, decorated with the white running horse of Hanover and edged with the motto ‘NEC ASPERA TERRENT’.  The cap-band was also often decorated with foliate embroidery and a drum badge.  The lace and embroidery of drummers’ uniforms and caps was often made of very expensive metallic wire; some colonels spared absolutely no expense!  Drummers were also normally mounted on grey horses.

Above:  The 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons.  This regiment was sometimes known as ‘Cope’s’ for Lieutenant-General Sir John Cope until his death on 28th July 1760, then as ‘Mostyn’s’ for Lieutenant-General John Mostyn until the end of the war.  While the main part of the regiment was in Germany, the regiment’s Light Troop was detached and took part in two amphibious expeditions to the French coast.

7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons by David Morier

Above:  The 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons.  The regiment had while facings and white ‘metal’, while the regimental lace was yellow with a central blue stripe.  This means that the regiment’s breeches should have been white, though Morier’s painting from the 1740s (above) shown non-regulation red breeches (I’ve done them white anyway).  Morier’s painting also shows a curious little black-feather plume.  The regiment rode horses ‘of different colours’ and the horse furniture was white, edged in regimental lace.  The drummers had coats in reversed colours, decorated with the regimental lace.

All dragoon regiments wore a single buff cross-belt with a prominent brass buckle on the front.  This was worn over the left shoulder, supporting a buff cartridge-pouch and carbine, while the sword-scabbard was suspended from a buff waist-belt and worn beneath the coat.  Cloaks were rolled behind the saddle and were normally rolled with the facing-coloured lining facing outwards (as shown in the Morier painting above), though in a moment of weakness, I followed the Kronoskaf plate and painted them red (it always pays to check multiple sources).

Above:  The 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons.  The 1st Squadron of each dragoon regiment carried a King’s Guidon, which was always coloured crimson.  The 2nd Squadron carried a Regimental Guidon, which was coloured according to the regimental facing colour, in this case white.  With such small regiments, I only give them one flag and I tend to use the Regimental Guidon, as the different facing colours look a bit more interesting than fielding a load of the crimson version.  However, for the larger 3-squadron (12-figure) regiments (RHG, 1st KDG & 15th LD), I give them both a King’s and a Regimental Standard/Guidon.

Note that in British parlance, a Guidon was always a swallow-tailed flag, while a Standard was always a square flag.  Regiments of Horse carried only Standards, while Dragoons and Light Dragoons carried only Guidons.  Dragoon Guards carried a King’s Standard (reflecting their origins as Horse) and a Regimental Guidon (two guidons in the case of the three-squadron 1st KDG).  The Life Guards, who stayed in Britain during the SYW, though who had been deployed during the War of Austrian Succession, had both a Standard and a Guidon in each troop!

Above:  The 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s).  This regiment didn’t have a title, so was just known by the name of its Colonel, namely William Henry, Earl of Ancram, who held the title throughout the Seven Years War.  Again, the regiment’s Light Troop remained in Britain, though took part in two amphibious operations to the French coast.

11th Dragoons by David Morier

Above:  The 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s).  This regiment had buff facings and white ‘metal’.  Kronoskaf describes the regimental lace as white with a green central stripe, though every other source says that the central stripe was blue (it’s hard to tell either way from the Morier painting above).  I’ve opted for blue.  I did however, foolishly follow Kronoskaf (again) and rolled their cloaks the wrong way round, red side out!  I’ve absolutely no idea why I did this… Again…  The regiment is recording as riding ‘dark brown horses, though other colours were used when dark brown was scarce’.  Horse furniture was buff, edged in regimental lace.

Above:  The 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s).  A close-up of the rear rank, including the drummer, to compare to the picture below.  As typical, they were dressed in reverse colours, heavily decorated with regimental lace, as shown in the painting below.

Above:  The 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s).  I accidentally ordered a crimson King’s Guidon for this unit, but no matter.  The Regimental Guidon would be buff.

Above:  Colonel Edward Harvey.  I decided to add this officer to my collection last September, when we refought the Battle of Clostercamp, as Colonel Harvey commanded a large British-Hanoverian-Hessian cavalry brigade of 12 squadrons at that battle.  He also went on to command brigades at Vellinghausen and Wilhelmsthal, so is a handy chap to have in my collection.  He was initially commissioned as a Cornet in the 10th Dragoons in 1741, before gaining a Captaincy in the 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons in 1747.  In 1754 he became Lieutenant Colonel of the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons and was promoted to full Colonel in 1760 and to Major-General in 1762.

Lieutenant Edward Harvey, 10th Dragoons by Allan Ramsay 1740s

Above:  Colonel Edward Harvey.  I’ve based Harvey’s uniform on the portrait above, showing him as a junior officer of the 10th Dragoons, sometime between 1741 and 1747.  As it happens, the uniform colourings would have been exactly the same when he was Colonel of the 6th Dragoons during the Seven Years War (yellow facings and silver metal).  Interestingly, the portrait shows Harvey wearing a plain ‘campaign coat’, with plain red cuffs instead of regulation yellow and completely devoid of lace.  The yellow gorget-patches and the placement of buttons show that he’s a dragoon, while the silver aiguillette indicates that he’s an officer.  Perhaps with this portrait he was making a statement that he was a ‘fighting officer’?  His yellow waistcoat however, retains its fancy silver lace.  Note that Harvey is also wearing non-standard red breeches instead of yellow, which again might be a campaign ‘thing’.

Above:  Colonel Edward Harvey.  I’ve used a Eureka mounted infantry officer figure for Harvey.  This in theory is slightly wrong, in that he’s wearing his sash ‘infantry-style’ over the right shoulder, whereas cavalry officers were meant to wear theirs on the left.  However, there are a few portraits of senior cavalry officers wearing their sash over the right shoulder, while the famous portrait of George Washington as a Colonel of Virginia infantry shows his sash being worn over the left shoulder, so I’m not bothered.

Right, that’s it for now.  More British cavalry, (French) Swiss infantry, scenarios and battle-reports to come, as soon as I get back from Italy!  🙂

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War British & Hanoverian Armies, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 5 Comments

Reinforcements for King Louis (Part 7: More French Infantry)

My apologies for the slow pace of articles thus far in 2024, despite my stated best intentions!  Unfortunately, various illnesses in my immediate family, a drastic change in my work shift-pattern since the New Year and a general Winter Malaise have taken their toll on my time.  I also haven’t managed to do any wargaming or painting yet this year!  Bah!

I do have a few half-written game-reports and scenarios lined up, but I needed to get something finished before the end of the month…  As mentioned in my review of 2023, there are a load of units that I painted for last year’s Clostercamp and Warburg games that I haven’t yet profiled, so here’s the first batch; three French infantry regiments for the Seven Years War.

These are all 18mm figures by Eureka Miniatures, with flags by Maverick Models.  I should also add that when I painted these late last Summer, I was really suffering with my eyes so I picked some of the simplest uniforms from the Minden orbat, yet the painting is still pretty poor compared to my usual standard.

Above:  First up is the Aquitaine Regiment.  In previous articles about my French army I said that I was using the Rossbach order of battle as my ‘To Do’ list.  However, that’s largely gone by the wayside and I’m now mostly painting regiments from the Minden order of battle, with various units of light troops sprinkled in as and when I need them for specific games.

Above:  The Aquitaine Regiment was raised in 1604 and as such was ranked 19th in order of seniority by the time of the Seven Years War.  The regiment raised two battalions during the Seven Years War and both battalions spent the entire war fighting in Germany, where the regiment was most notably engaged at Minden, Vellinghausen and Wilhemsthal.

Above:  The Aquitaine Regiment wore the usual unbleached off-white coat and breeches, with blue cuffs, collar and waistcoat and yellow ‘metal’.  Belts and pouches were natural leather and gaiters were white.

As the Aquitaine Regiment was a Provincial Regiment, the regiment’s drummers wore the Royal Livery of blue coats with red facings, decorated with crimson & white lace, with red small-clothes and drums being painted light blue.

The Colonel’s Colour was the usual plain white cross on white field, but the Ordonnance Colours were of a unique pattern, featuring radiating rays of blue, red and aurore, superimposed with the usual white cross.  Unlike Swiss flags, the radiating rays were straight instead of wavy and they had a border of blue, red and aurore rectangles.

Above:  The Vastan Regiment was raised in 1674 as a ‘Gentleman’s Regiment’.  During the Seven Years War the regiment was numbered 58th in order of seniority and fielded two battalions.  In 1762 the regimental title changed briefly to Bouillé de Chariol (some say 1761, but the Marquis de Vastan wasn’t killed until 1762), though with the general reorganisation of the army, the regiment became a Provincial Regiment and the title changed again to Vexin.

The regiment served initially in Germany, though was almost destroyed at Minden and was then rebuilt in France.  The regiment returned to Germany in 1760 and at Warburg managed to avoid the disaster due to its position in reserve, some four miles to the south.  The regiment fought at Vellinghausen, though in October 1762, the regiment’s 1st Battalion, along with the Marquis de Vastan himself, was attacked in its camp and was captured after losing around half its strength killed, including the Marquis.  What was left of the regiment then passed to the Marquis de Bouillé and it spent the rest of the war on coastal defence duties in western France.

Above:  The uniform of the Vastan Regiment was very plain, with coat, cuffs and small-clothes in the usual off-white colour, with black collar and yellow ‘metal’.  Some sources (such as the painting above) show a red waistcoat.  Equipment was natural leather and gaiters were white.

Drummers’ livery is unknown, though the dominant heraldic colour for the Marquis de Vastan was yellow.  I’ve therefore gone for yellow coats with black facings.  The dominant heraldic colour for the Marquis de Bouillé was red, though when the regiment became a Provincial Regiment in 1762, the drummers would then have worn Royal Livery.

The Colonel’s Colour was the usual plain white cross on a white field.  The Ordonnance Colour was quartered yellow and black, superimposed with the usual white cross.

Above:  The Mailly Regiment was first raised in 1589 as a Gentleman’s Regiment and by the time of the Seven Years War was numbered 11th in order of seniority.  At the start of the war, the regiment seems to have had only two battalions, but this had increased to four battalions by the time it was sent to Germany in 1757.  The regiment suffered catastrophic losses at Rossbach and in 1758 was withdrawn to France and re-titled as the Talaru Regiment.  The regiment remained on coastal defence duties (with a detachment serving as marines) until 1761, when the regiment was re-titled as the Chatellux Regiment and all four battalions returned to Germany, fighting at Vellinghausen and remaining in Germany until the end of the war.  In 1762 the regiment officially became the Provincial Guyenne Regiment, though curiously kept the title Chatellux (for the Chavlier de Chatellux) until 1771.

Above:  The uniform of the Mailly Regiment was very plain, consisting of a plain off-white coat, lacking any contrasting facing colour.  Breeches were also off-white, though a small splash of colour was added through the regiment’s red waistcoats.  ‘Metal’ was yellow.  Equipment was natural leather and gaiters were white.

The drummers would have been dressed in the livery of the regimental Colonel, which ‘probably’ followed his main heraldic colours.  In the case of the Marquis de Mailly, the heraldry was predominantly yellow and red, so I’ve gone with yellow coats and red lace.  In 1762 the regiment’s drummers should have adopted Royal Livery, though they apparently wore the (unknown) livery of the Chevalier de Chatellux until 1771.

Above:  The Colonel’s Colour of the Mailly Regiment was the usual plain white cross on a white field.  The Ordonnance Colours were quartered violet and red, superimposed with the usual white cross.  However, sources disagree as to which way round the violet and red quarters were.  In this instance, Maverick Models followed the old Kronoskaf depiction, showing the violet quarter uppermost at the hoist and the colour as dark blue.  I therefore repainted the blue corners in Vallejo violet acrylic, though they still look quite blue.  The new Kronoskaf depiction shows the red quarter uppermost at the hoist, as does David Morfitt’s version.  I may therefore, decide to replace these flags (if I can be arsed).

Anyway, that’s it for now; more soon!  In the meantime, my play-by-email Franco-Prussian War campaign is just getting interesting.  For reasons of operational security, I can’t give too many details (French eyes may be reading…), but at the end of the campaign’s first turn, my Prussian 2nd Army has successfully breached the French line on the River Saar at Saarbrücken and has pushed the French II & III Corps back to the town of St Avoid where they seem to be making another stand.  The French I Corps meanwhile, managed to avoid the two Bavarian Corps at Wörth and is falling back toward Strassbourg, while the French V Corps has abandoned Bitsch.  The Prussian 3rd Army meanwhile, has won a resounding victory against the French VII Corps on the east bank of the Rhine, following a rather daring French invasion of Germany.  This is shaping up to be a very interesting campaign…  On to Paris!


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

“Going At It Bald-Headed!”: The Battle of Warburg 1760 (The Refight)

As mentioned last week in my Review of 2023, during ‘Chrimbo Limbo’ we played my Battle of Warburg 1760 scenario at the Wargames Association of South Pembrokeshire (W.A.S.P.) in Pembroke Dock.  We had originally planned to do this at a local tabletop game show in November, but sickness stopped play on that occasion.  Sadly, my mate Andy pulled another sickie on this occasion (I think he must have become allergic to me), which meant that we didn’t have him or his walled town model for the game, but we cracked on anyway.

A good crowd turned up for the game:  Al Broughton, Kirk French and Dave Llewellyn took the Allies, while Bruce Castle, his son Tane and brother Mark joined me in fighting for King Louis.  So while we didn’t have a walled town, we did have a load of Castles…

I thangyou, I’m here all week, try the veal…

While we didn’t have quite enough space for the full 12-foot table, as per the map above, we did manage to get a 10-foot table and didn’t have to compress the map too much (in the scenario I provided an alternative ‘compressed’ 8-foot version of the map).

One slight change to the scenario was that I allowed the French to re-deploy Castries’ brigade of massed grenadiers and chasseur companies to a position roughly to the rear of the La Tour-du-Pin Regiment.  Otherwise, it would be almost impossible for Castries to get involved in the fight for the Hein-Berg, as he was historically.  I will add this, along with some other scenario-balancing options to the original scenario later.

Above:  A view of the, table oriented the same as the scenario map.  In the right-foreground is Bülow’s Légion Britannique, on the high ground, facing Warburg.  You’ll note that my lovely printed terrain-cloth is only 8 feet long, so I had to dig out my old green parachute silk for this end of the table!  It’s not all that obvious in the photos, but the hills are underneath the cloth for this game.  I also didn’t put the full array of roads on the table, as I simply don’t have enough roads!

Above:  David Morfitt very kindly re-drew his sheet of hypothetical Légion Britannique flags to include orange and light blue regimental colours for the 3rd and 4th Battalions, so I carefully removed the old flags and replaced them with the new designs in time for their first game…  Which of course with this lot is just like casting pearls before swine!  Dave Llewellyn immediately deployed the whole lot in skirmish order and consigned the formed troops and those lovely flags back to the toolbox for the rest of the game! 🙁

Above:  The Chasseur à Pied Companies of the Chasseurs de Fischer prepare to defend the crumbling walls of Warburg.  I frantically painted these in the days before the game, along with Fischer himself (who can just be seen hiding behind a house at the back), the Marquis de Castries and the massed grenadiers and chasseurs (who can be seen at the top-right of the photo).

Above:  Maupeou’s infantry division consists of eight battalions and forms the right wing of du Muy’s army.

Above:  The French centre is formed by four cavalry brigades (each of which is treated as a regiment for game purposes, as French cavalry regiments were absolutely tiny) and two dragoon regiments.  To their rear is a small reserve, consisting of a single infantry brigade of four battalions.  To the left of the cavalry is d’Amenzaga’s Swiss infantry division of eight battalions and on the far left are another eight battalions under the Marquis de Ségur, forming a ‘fish-hook’ around the end of the ridge.

Above:  The Allied advanced guard (Colonel Beckwith with the two British grenadier battalions and two Highland battalions) makes a bee-line for the Hein-Berg, which dominates the French bridges over the River Diemel.  On Beckwith’s left is General Spörcken, with three Hanoverian grenadier battalions and five Hanoverian infantry regiments.  However, I must confess that I’ve only painted one battalion each of British and Hanoverian grenadiers, so I used the 23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers and the Hanoverian Fußgarde as proxies.

Above:  In support of Spörcken’s division is a mass of Hanoverian dragoons, British dragoons and Hessian regiments of horse under General Hardenberg.  These move forward to cover the Hanoverian left flank.

Above:  The Allied commanding general, the Hereditary Prince (Erbprinz) observes the French position from one of the Allied battery positions on the Fürsten-Berg.  On his left, Zastrow’s division (three Brunswick grenadier battalions, three Hessian grenadier battalions and three Hessian infantry regiments) begin its attack as Bork’s Hanoverian cavalry watch the left flank.

Above:  On the ridge, the French artillery opens fire on the approaching Allied lines.  General du Muy knows that he’s onto a sticky wicket.  Although numbers are similar, his flank has already been turned and his only hope is to capture and hold the Hein-Berg feature, to keep his line of retreat open.  He’s already called de Castries’ elite corps and Maupeou’s division back from the right flank and has turned half of Ségur’s division (the Bourbonnais Regiment), to face the approaching threat, but that won’t be enough!  He therefore orders Travers’ reserve brigade and d’Amenzaga’s Swiss to pull out of the line and extend the left flank.

Above:  With all the French infantry marching to the left flank, the French cavalry and dragoons are now charged with guarding du Muy’s right flank.  Du Muy still doesn’t know where the main part of the Allied army is.

Above:  Beckwith’s British grenadiers and Highlanders march up the steep slopes of the Hein-Berg.  This hill was actually topped by a mediaeval watch-tower, but we sadly don’t own a model of one of those!

Above:  Spörcken’s Hanoverians advance on the French left flank, climbing the northern end of the Haum-Berg and pinning the Bourbonnais Regiment in place, thus preventing the French infantry from moving south to block Beckwith’s advance on the Hein-Berg.

Above:  The range is long, but British, Hessian and Hanoverian heavy artillery positioned on the Fürsten-Berg hammers the French left flank.  The French heavy artillery replies, but is remarkably ineffective.

Above:  As Zastrow’s Brunswicker and Hessian grenadiers advance, Bork’s Hanoverian cavalry remain stationary on the left.

Above:  Zastrow’s first line, formed by the three Brunswick grenadier battalions and the Hessian 4. Garde-Regiment, start to climb the ridge to get to grips with the French.  The French artillery switches to canister, but still seems unable to hit anything!  Perhaps their elevated position on the ridge is making them fire too high?

Behind Ségur’s line, d’Amenzaga’s Swiss can be seen pulling back and marching to cover Ségur’s left flank.

Above:  The French cavalry swings left to cover the gap left by the Swiss.  Behind them, Travers’ reserve marches up the road toward the left flank, followed in the distance by de Castries’ elite corps and Maupeou’s division.

Above:  With the French line already softened up at long range by the Allied heavy artillery and battalion guns, Spörcken wastes no time on a firefight and instead gets stuck straight in with the bayonet!  However, the Bourbonnais Regiment stands firm and halts the first charge through firepower.

Above:  However, the Allies have achieved a massive concentration of force against this point on the battlefield; Ségur’s eight battalions face seventeen Allied battalions (many of whom are elite grenadiers) and the Allies also have a massive superiority in artillery and cavalry massed at this point.

Above:  Nevertheless, the Allied artillery has now been masked by their own advancing infantry and their cavalry won’t be able to achieve a great deal until the French line has been disrupted by the Allied infantry.

Above:  The Erbprinz confidently watches his attack go in.  However, seeing the French cavalry begin to threaten Zastrow’s left, he sends orders to General Bork, requesting that he move his cavalry forward to counter the French horse.

Above:  As Zastrow’s division commences a firefight with the French line, he splits his third line (the Hessian grenadier brigade) in order to extend his flanks.

Above:  Another view of the battle for the flank.  As can be seen by the many casualty and disorder markers behind the Bourbonnais Regiment, the French line might have halted Spörcken’s first charge, but they have been badly hurt and might not be able to stand for long.

Above:  In the French rear, Travers’ reserve brigade has arrived and is now ordered by du Muy to drive between the Haum-Berg and Hein-Berg, then swing right to turn Spörcken’s right flank.  This manoeuvre will expose Travers to flanking fire from Beckwith’s brigade on the Hein-Berg, but de Castries will soon arrive to (hopefully) deal with that threat.  D’Amenzaga’s red-coated Swiss meanwhile, will attack into the gap between Travers and Ségur.

Above:  The situation is now getting desperate for Ségur, as his infantry is now fully engaged and is taking heavy losses.  The worst-hit part of the line is the ‘angle’, where the right flank (1st Bn) of the Bourbonnais Regiment meets the left flank (2nd Bn) of the d’Aumont Regiment.  These two battalions have been hit especially hard by artillery and the Hessian horse seem poised to exploit their weakness.

Above:  The view from behind the French left flank; d’Amenzaga’s Swiss continue their march to the left flank, but at this rate Ségur’s front line may well break before they get there!  Nevertheless, the French show they still have teeth, as the Hanoverian Post Regiment, on the left of Spörcken’s line and the Hessian 4. Garde-Regiment, on the right flank of Zastrow’s first line, shredded by a sudden storm of canister and musketry, suddenly break and run from the fight!  Nevertheless, despite this small victory, the French infantry know that this is only going to end one way…

Above:  However, help is on the way for the beleaguered French infantry!  Maupeou’s division is almost in place to form a new line behind Ségur.

On the left of the photo, de Castries’ massed grenadier companies have formed a large column à la Ordre Profonde and are advancing on the Hein-Berg, preceded by a mass of chasseurs in skirmish order… If this works, the idea might catch on…

Above:  Beckwith’s grenadiers and Highlanders feel secure in their position atop the Hein-Berg, but now start to be stung by fire from de Castries’ chasseur companies and a section of battalion guns firing from the Haum-Berg.

Above:  Ignoring the fire from Beckwith’s battalion guns, Travers redeploys his reserve brigade into two lines (Rohan-Rochefort Regiment in front and Rouergue Regiment to the rear) and swings his line to the right.  In response, Spörcken refuses his right flank, wheeling the Wersabé Grenadiers back through 90 degrees to face the new threat.  But it’s to no avail, as the Swiss throw back both Wersabé’s and Bock’s Grenadiers and Travers advances over the crest of the Haum-Berg!  Thankfully, both Hanoverian grenadier battalions quickly rally and form up at right-angles to Spörcken’s second line.

Above:  Ignoring the emerging crisis on the Haum-Berg, Spörcken’s Hanoverians charge again, this time in concert with Hardenberg’s cavalry and Zastrow’s Brunswick grenadiers on their left.  After a valiant stand, the 2nd Battalion of the Bourbonnais Regiment is finally broken by the Hanoverian Estorff Regiment, while the entire d’Aumont Regiment is crushed by the Hessian horse and the Brunswick Witdorf Grenadiers.  Nevertheless, the 3rd and 4th Battalions of the Bourbonnais Regiment stand their ground and the 1st Battalion manages by the skin of its teeth to beat off an opportunity charge by the Hessian horse!  On Ségur’s right flank, the La Couronne Regiment is also managing to cling on, despite heavy casualties.

Above:  To their rear, Maupeou deploys his infantry into line.  Ségur’s line may be crumbling, but the injection of this fresh division, along with the attack on the Hanoverian flank, might be enough to save the day…

Above:  A groan ripples along the French line as a new formation appears over the horizon…

Above:  The Marquess of Granby has arrived!  Galloping across the battlefield at the head of a great mass of  British cavalry (three squadrons of Royal Horse Guards, four squadrons of Horse, seven squadrons of Dragoon Guards and four squadrons of Dragoons), Granby makes a bee-line for the long line of French cavalry arrayed along the ridge.  As he gallops forward, his hat and wig fly off.  The sun shining off his bald head make an excellent marker for the British cavalry to follow!

Above:  In the meantime, Ségur’s division goes down fighting!  The La Couronne Regiment is at last overwhelmed by Zastrow’s Brunswick and Hessian grenadiers, while the 1st Battalion of the Bourbonnais Regiment finally succumbs to a combined attack by the Brunswick Witdorf Grenadiers and Hardenberg’s cavalry.

Above:  On the French left flank, the 3rd & 4th Battalions of the Bourbonnais Regiment manage to crush two of Spörcken’s Hanoverian regiments, before they too are overwhelmed.  However, Travers’ reserve brigade and d’Amenzaga’s Swiss are steadily crushing the Hanoverian right flank.  With losses rapidly mounting, Spörcken suffers a crisis of confidence! [In game terms, Spörcken’s command is now Demoralised]

Above:  Another view of Ségur’s last stand.

Above:  With Ségur’s infantry cleared away, Zastrow now turns his guns on the left flank of the French dragoons… With devastating results.

Above:  The great mass of British cavalry continues to thunder toward the ridge.  The French cavalry nervously hold their ground, hoping that the slope will give them some advantage in the coming melee.

Above:  Bounding alongside the British cavalry are two batteries of British artillery, commanded by the noted artillerist, Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe.  He has ordered the gunners to be mounted on every available horse and limber; even on the guns themselves!  They gallop onto the battlefield alongside the British horse and now pour a deadly fire into the waiting French horsemen.

Above:  Almost forgotten on the far flank of the battlefield, the ruffians of the Légion Britannique advance, crossing the ground previously held by the French right wing.  Du Muy had hoped that Fischer’s corps of chasseurs (particularly the Chasseurs à Cheval) would hold these marauders at bay, but the legion’s dragoon squadrons made short work of Fischer’s Chasseurs à Cheval and are now keeping the Chasseurs à Pied penned up within the walls of Warburg.

Above:  Meanwhile, on the extreme western flank of the battle, the Marquis de Castries has finally reached the foot of the Hein-Berg.  With his chasseurs already keeping the British grenadiers pinned down, he launches his massed column of grenadiers up the steep slope!

Above:  Travers continues his assault on the Hanoverian right flank, though resistance is stiffening as Travers’ charge is halted by fire from Bock’s grenadier battalion and one of the Swiss battalions is repulsed.  However, the Swiss manage to outflank and destroy the Hanoverian Scheither Regiment.

Above: At last, the two great masses of cavalry clash on the ridge!  However, the French Royal Dragoons, on the left flank of the French horse, have already been routed by fire from Zastrow’s infantry and artillery.

Above:  On the Hein-Berg, the French grenadiers charge home on Maxwell’s grenadier battalion!  The French chasseurs have done their job, as the British grenadiers are already disordered by fire.

Above:  Against all odds, the French grenadiers smash through Maxwell’s battalion and established a foothold on the crest of the Hein-Berg!

Above:  In the centre, Maupeou has established a new line in the nick of time and masses a large concentration of artillery, who now rip great holes in Zastrow’s ranks.  Witdorf’s Brunswicker grenadier battalion, standing on the right flank of Zastrow’s first line, comes in for particular attention and is quickly broken up by canister fire.

Hardenberg’s British dragoon brigade meanwhile, spots an opportunity in the gap between the d’Amenzaga’s Swiss and Zastrow’s division; the advancing Swiss have left a section of battalion guns isolated and unprotected!  The dragoons charge through the gap, but astonishingly, are beaten off by the gunners!  The British dragoons retreat with the jeers of both their enemies and allies ringing in their ears!

Above:  Travers continues his assault on the Hanoverian right flank, but just can’t break the Hanoverian grenadiers!  To add to his woes, Spörcken has brought his heavy artillery forward and is now pummeling the French battalions exposed on the forward slope of the Haum-Berg.

Above:  Zastrow’s division pushes forward against Maupeou’s division, in the face of intense canister fire.  On the right, Mirbach’s Hessian grenadier battalion moves forward to take the place of the broken Brunswickers.

Above:  Despite having the advantage of the high ground, the cavalry battle is a near-total disaster for the French.  The Bourbon Brigade is destroyed outright, while the Royal-Piémont Brigade is thrown back.  However, the La Reine and Royal-Étranger Brigades on the French right flank manage to gang up on the British 3rd & 4th Regiments of Horse and throw them back.

Above:  Having defeated the British 3rd & 4th Horse, the La Reine Brigade sadly run into the Royal Horse Guards and are in turn defeated… Whereupon the retreating French cavalrymen have the misfortune of running into the cutthroats of the Légion Britannique…

Above:  The Royal-Étranger Brigade however, have rather better luck and charge on, successfully sabering one of Schaumburg-Lippe’s ‘flying’ batteries!  This idea of mounting gunners on horseback is clearly a silly concept that will never catch on…

Above:  Having weathered the storm of shot and canister, Zastrow’s grenadiers finally charge home on Maupeou’s infantry and are joined on the flank by some British dragoons.  The result is a complete disaster for Maupeou as four of his eight battalions, along with most of his heavy artillery, are immediately overwhelmed!

Above:  At last, Travers’ reserve brigade and d’Amenzaga’s Swiss finally destroy the last of the Hanoverian grenadiers, though on d’Amenzaga’s right flank, the Hanoverian Breydenbach Dragoons  charge once again.

Above:  The Breydenbach Dragoons break the right-flanking Swiss battalion, along with the battery that had earlier repulsed the British dragoons.  Flushed with success, the Breydenbach Dragoons charge on into the La Tour-du-Pin Regiment of Maupeou’s division!

Above:  By some miracle, the French infantry manage once again too beat off the Allied cavalry in this sector.  Hardenberg’s cavalry have had very little tactical success, but they keep on rallying and keep coming back!

Above:  Meanwhile back at Warburg… The Chasseurs de Fischer are wondering what all the noise is over the hill and decide to wander out to take a look…

Above:  However, Hattorf’s Amazing Technicolour Dragoon Regiment is watching from the heights and would LOVE for them to come out into the open ground…

Above:  A final charge by Zastrow’s grenadiers and Hardenberg’s brigade of Hessian Horse finally ends Maupeou’s brief stand on the ridge.  Du Muy’s headquarters is almost overrun, but he and his staff successfully break out for the Diemel bridge, escorted by the Thiange Dragoons.

Above:  On the Hein-Berg meanwhile, Beckwith’s grenadiers and Highlanders mount a counter-attack against de Castries’ French grenadiers.  Daulhat’s British grenadier battalion suffers very heavy casualties due to supporting fire from the chasseur companies and artillery and flees the field, though the 87th and 88th Highlanders press home their attack and successfully drive back the French grenadiers!

The loss of their toe-hold on the Hein-Berg is potentially disastrous for French morale, though Beckwith has now suffered 50% casualties…  By some miracle, Beckwith manages to maintain control of his men, the Highlanders remain in control of the hill and then proceed to make extremely rude gestures at the Frenchmen below…

Above:  Spörcken meanwhile, has lost all but two of his eight battalions (plus his two supporting batteries of heavy artillery) and finally breaks.  However, this small victory is cold comfort to the French, as their entire army is crumbling.

Above:  The French cavalry meanwhile, having taken catastrophic losses in their first clash with Granby’s British cavalry, now break and run for the Diemel crossings.  This is all too much for the French army, which is now in total collapse!

So a decisive victory to the Allies!

Du Muys makes a note in his campaign diary… “Merde…”

All in all, a great game, despite the catastrophic hoofing inflicted on our side!  My thanks to Al, Gareth, Kirk, Dave, Bruce, Mark and Tane for an excellent game in excellent company!

Scenario Balancing Options

As might perhaps be clear from the above account, this is a VERY difficult scenario for the French to win and I offer the following suggestions in order to make it a better game:

1.  Allow the Marquis de Castries to alter his deployment position from that shown on the map to a position roughly to the rear of Maupeou’s division.  This will allow him to intervene in the battle for the Hein-Berg, as he did historically.  We actually invoked this rule for the game, but it’s not mentioned in the original scenario.

2.  Class all Swiss infantry battalions as Elite (Morale Rating 5).  They often are in many wargames rules, but in this scenario I only rated the Jenner Regiment as Elite (along with the French Bourbonnais and La Couronne Regiments).

3.  Remove the ‘Poor’ rating from all French cavalry and dragoon regiments, which means that they will be MR 6 and MR 5 respectively.

4.  Historically there was a race between the Bourbonnais Regiment and Beckwith’s grenadiers to the crest of the Hein-Berg.  However, this isn’t really possible given the starting positions shown on the map (which is based on the Prussian Grossergeneralstab map).  I therefore suggest pushing Spörcken’s and Zastrow’s starting positions back by 12 inches and shift the Bourbonnais Regiment to the left until is is in a position (in column of battalion lines) where it has exactly the same distance to reach the crest of the Hein-Berg as Beckwith’s brigade.

I think that’s enough to be going on with.

More soon.  I’ve currently got several Tricorn scenarios on the go for the War of Austrian Succession (Chotusitz, Hohenfriedburg, Soor and Kesselsdorf), as well as some old favourites of ours; namely rather large Napoleon’s Battles scenarios for the Battles of Lützen and Bautzen in 1813, so we’ll see what turns up first…

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Games, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 8 Comments

Jemima Fawr’s Review of 2023

Well here we are once again, bewildered and wondering “Where the hell did that year go?!”

I hope that wherever the last remaining reader of this blog is, they’re enjoying themselves and not sitting in work on the night shift, trying to paint Seven Years War Brunswickers with one good eye…

It’s been a good year for me on the wargames front.  I managed to get lots of wargaming done, almost all of which involved cocked hats in one way or another; either displayed on the troops or being beaten into one… Sometimes both.  This year I returned to being something of a ‘promiscuous wargames-slut’, wargaming at lots of different clubs and with different groups of old and new friends, especially at my ‘Alma-Pater’ in Pembroke Dock, the Wargames Association of South Pembrokeshire (WASP).

Aside from the open day of the Haverfordwest Gaming Club I didn’t manage to get to any wargame shows this year (again!), but that was largely down to work shifts coinciding with the dates of shows I wanted to attend, so there’s not a lot I can do about that (as if I’m ever going to leave a reasonably well-paid job that allows me to paint figures on their time…).

Great Britain and the Defence of the Low Countries 1744-1748 : Armies, Politics and DiplomacyI did however, manage to get to a military history lecture at the Bloody Awful National Army Museum in London last week.  This was by Dr Alistair Massie on the subject of General Ligonier and his quite astonishing political and command problems leading up to the Battle of Rocoux in 1746.  This had all the potential to be a very dry topic, but it was superb; both informative and entertaining.  This inevitably tied into the release of his snappily-titled new book ‘Great Britain and the Defence of the Low Countries 1744-1748’, which of course I then HAD to buy (so expect more War of Austrian Succession scenarios…)!

The most entertaining part of my trip to London was queuing up outside the lecture theatre next to a group of lovely ‘Chelsea Ladies Who Lunch’, who attend all the free military history lectures at the museum.  I heard the following conversation;

“Well you see Deidre, the Tiger, while having excellent firepower and armour protection, was completely over-engineered and a nightmare to maintain in the field.” 

“Why yes Angela, the Germans would have been far better off using their resources to build far more tried-and-tested medium tank designs such as the Mark IV.  What do you think, Sandra?” 

“Well I’ve always thought that the simplicity of maintenance of the Sherman, enabled British squadrons to turn up daily with a full squadron of tanks, when the Germans could only field platoons after the first day of any given battle…”

I definitely want to go to more lectures if they’re going to be there… 🙂

Anyway, how did I do on the painting front during 2023?  I only started seriously counting everything when I did my annual review of 2021.  That was the year in which I was really getting back into 15mm SYW and had planned a large 10mm ACW demo game, so had stacks of motivation to paint.  I therefore managed to do rather well, with 963x 15mm Foot, 114x 15mm Horse, 17x 15mm Guns, 588x 10mm Foot, 82x 10mm Horse, 21x 10mm Guns and 13x 10mm Horse-Drawn Vehicles.  The value of models painted amounted to £1,080.23 at 2021 prices.

2022 wasn’t quite so good.  Some big demo game plans were cancelled and my painting was fairly aimless.  I also got bogged down in painting 28mm AWI figures, which seemed to take forever.  It still wasn’t a bad year though.  Total painted 15mm figures: 308 Foot, 274 Horse & 19 Guns.  Total painted 28mm figures: 90 Foot, 5 Horse & 1 Gun.  Total monetary value of painted models at 2022 prices: £737.60.

So here’s what I painted this year.  Most of the pictures will link you to the relevant article, but I’m still catching up and some units don’t have an article or even a decent picture yet!

Right at the start of the year, I was painting a heap of SYW Prussian Hussars for our January Kolin refight:

I also needed some other bits and pieces for the Kolin refight; most pressingly, I needed some more SYW Austrian Artillery & Staff:

Once all the troops had been finished for Kolin, I had a brief return to Napoleonics, starting with the sudden urge to buy and paint the brand-new Russian Mounted Jäger (or Chasseurs à Cheval if you prefer) that had been released by AB Figures:

While rummaging around in my Napoleonics collection, I discovered that my Swedish artillery and corps commander had disappeared from their box.  They must be long-gone, so I cobbled together a Swedish corps commander from some spare figures and bought some new artillery from Old Glory 15s:

With that brief flurry of Napoleonics over, I got back to expanding my SYW armies.  The Reichsarmee was within sight of being finished, so I set myself the target of refighting the Combat of Strehla, which featured 90% of the Reichsarmee.  After re-flagging a few of my older older regiments with some lovely new flags by David Morfitt and Frédéric Aubert, I cracked on with painting some Imperial Auxiliary Regiments:

I also needed a few new Prussian units for the Combat of Strehla, namely the first few units of Kleist’s Freikorps, along with ‘Green’ Kleist himself.  I haven’t done a blog-article about these yet, as I’ve only painted half of the Dragoon Regiment, half of the Hussar Regiment and the Jäger Companies.  Kleist’s Freikorps did get to be rather large and I’ve still got the second battalions of those regiments to paint, along with the ‘Croat’ Regiment, the Uhlan Regiment and the corps’ artillery.  I’ll hopefully finish those units off in 2024, but in the meantime, here are the finished troops:

Then it was time for More Reichsarmee Units!  Here are the Kurmainz Regiment. Kurköln Regiments and the Kurpfalz ‘Effern’ Regiment:

And then Yet More Reichsarmee Units!  Here are the Württemberg Dragoons, Sachsen-Gotha Dragoons, Pfalz Leib-Dragoons and the Pfalz-Zweibrücken Infantry.  I also painted a stack of artillery and grenadiers for all the different contingents:

And then, once Strehla had been fought, I STILL needed to paint a few more units to finally finish off the Reichsarmee; mostly Franconian infantry, grenadiers and artillery:

With the Reichsarmee finally finished, I decided to make a concerted effort to expand my SYW French and Anglo-Hanoverian-Allied armies, which I started in March 2021.  I had enough of both sides to play a random ‘pick-up’ game, but not enough troops of the right types to do any historical scenarios.  I therefore picked a couple of modestly-sized historical battles, intending to use their orders of battle as my target for painting.  I wasn’t too bothered about matching the exact list of regiments, just so long as the mix of unit-types was ok.  The first task however, was to fix an earlier mistake I made with the French artillery (giving them red gun-carriages instead of light blue) and then I needed to give each side some light troops:

For the Allies, I got a bit carried away with light troops, painting the entire Légion Britannique, including all the skirmisher options and the massed dragoon squadrons!  I think it was the bizarre array of uniform colours that appealed to me, but they take a starring role in our refight of Warburg.  The red and blue-coated skirmishers can also do double-service for generic army picquets:

Having already painted plenty of British and Hanoverian troops, it was time to expand one of the major players in the Allied coalition; the Landgraviate of Hesse-Cassel.  I had previously painted a solitary Hessian regiment, but I’ve now added another three regiments, as well as Dragoons, Horse, position artillery and battalion guns:

For our refight of the Battle of Clostercamp, I wanted more ‘bog-standard’ grey-coated French Infantry regiments, so that we wouldn’t then have to rely upon using my red-coated Swiss and blue-coated German regiments as proxies.  I therefore added another eight battalions from the Mailly, Vastan and Aquitaine Regiments.  You can NEVER have enough French infantry…  However, I still haven’t profiled these units:

Another French unit that we needed for Clostercamp was the spectacular (and huge) Gendarmerie de France.  This is the first of two exceptionally-large French cavalry regiments on my immediate ‘To do’ List; the second being the Royal-Carabiniers, which I’ll be painting in 2024:

For Warburg I needed to double my contingent of Swiss Infantry, so I added another four battalions; two each from the Diesbach and Castellas Regiments.  However, once again, I haven’t profiled these units yet:

I actually painted two units of Hanoverian Cavalry in 2022, but never got around to profiling them on the blog.  However, I recently added a third unit, so thought it was about time I did a blog-post:

For Clostercamp we needed some Highlander skirmishers and since then I’ve added a pair of formed battalions for our Warburg game:

For Warburg I needed to massively expand my contingent of British Cavalry, so painted another 36 figures, equating to three regiments of Dragoons, one of Dragoon Guards and two of Horse (6 figures per regiment).  Again, my apologies, but I haven’t yet profiled these regiments:

I needed to paint a second regiment of French dragoons for Warburg and with Christmas approaching, it HAD to be the Mestre de Camp Général Regiment:

Some last-minute painting for Warburg has included the Marquis de Castries and his ad hoc corps of massed French Grenadiers & Chasseurs:

I also managed to get Johann Fischer and his Chasseurs à Pied finished in time for the game.  I will at some point in the future, have to add some skirmishing Chasseurs à Pied and the squadrons of Chasseurs à Cheval (we had to use proxies in the game):

And to finish off the year, I painted the very first units for my SYW Brunswick contingent; the ‘Imhoff’ Infantry Regiment and a battalion gun.  OK, I haven’t QUITE finished them yet, but I will have by midnight tonight, so I’m taking that…

So the totals for this year are:  752x 15mm Foot, 234x 15mm Horse and 26x 15mm Guns, for a total cash value of £919.40 at 2023 prices.  Not bad at all! 🙂

So to my wargaming for the year…

As mentioned above, it was a pretty good year for wargaming, 🙂 though a VERY bad year for actually writing up my games (or winning them)! 🙁

We started in spectacular style in January, with a massive refight of the SYW Battle of Kolin at Phil Portway’s house (also including Andy James and Rob Pritchard), which again tested Tricorn to its absolute limits as a rules system with which to play large 18th Century battles (and I’m pleased to say that it passed the test – especially as I was for once on the winning side):

In March, I had a pick-up 28mm AWI game with my new chum Kirk French, using his wonderful collection of 28mm Front Rank figures and Eclaireur‘s British Grenadier! rules, though sadly I have thus far failed to produce a game report (sorry Kirk).  Claims that I didn’t write it up due to my complete trouncing are entire unfounded…

The above game was in preparation for a much larger (and much-postponed) refight of Cornwallis’ attack at the Battle of the Brandywine (below) with Kirk French and my old mate Anthony Oakley.  Again, I have completely failed to produce a game-report (yet), so no spoilers, but suffice to say that I was once again left wondering if this is perhaps the hobby for me…

In April, we went back to the Seven Years War.  As I’d finally finished painting the Reichsarmee, it was time to get it all (well, nearly all) on the table with the Combat of Strehla.  Andy James and Kirk French led the Reichsarmee to victory against my Prussians…

A few members of the Carmarthen Old Guard had been asking about playing the ACW 2nd Battle of Murfreesboro (Stone’s River) on the terrain I’d built for Warfare 2021.  This is definitely a full two-day game, so I booked the hall for a whole weekend in June.  However, a few of the lads had never played Fire & Fury, or had never played the 2nd Edition, so in advance of the big game, I set up part of the table as a small club-night training scenario.  This was a ‘what-if’ scenario based on the situation of the northern flank at Murfreesboro.  This assumed two counter-factual things:  1.  That the Union side had not cancelled their flanking attack and 2.  That the Confederate General Breckenridge actually did his job that day.  Again, I haven’t written up this small game (sorry), though I really should write up this small scenario:

Following the trial game, we set up the full scenario and played it over a whole weekend in June.  This time I actually managed to play… And got a kicking… Again, I MUST get around to writing up the game!  I’m actually going to be setting the game up again in February for some more friends and that might be the last outing for Murfreesboro:

In August, my old RAF mate Bruce was down in Pembrokeshire with his family.  Back in our Officer Cadet days, Bruce and I were often the only ones left on camp when everyone else went home for the weekend (New Zealand and Pembrokeshire being equally difficult to reach from Lincolnshire) and games of Risk, Diplomacy, Junta, Turning Point: Stalingrad, Air Cav and Empires in Arms were cheap entertainment.  He then joined W.A.S.P. when stationed down here during his pilot-training and ended up marrying a Pembrokeshire girl, so is a frequent returnee to this neck of the woods.  Anyway, his lads are now teenagers, so it’s about time they were led astray by lead soldiers…  So the Murfreesboro mini-game got another run-out at his in-laws house:

In September, a local club, the Haverfordwest Gaming Club (HATS), was having a club open day.  We’d never been there before, so Andy James, Kirk French and I decided to put on a refight of the SYW Battle of Clostercamp.  This time, I once again managed to avoid defeat through the medium of umpiring:

In October I went back to the Haverfordwest Gaming Club again for yet ANOTHER run-out of that Murfreesboro mini-game; this time with Andy Williams.  The photo below shows my ‘brave’ attack with my pioneer brigade, through a ford, uphill against an entrenched, elite enemy with absolutely zero artillery support.  And I lost!  Can you believe it…?

In November I was back at W.A.S.P. and had my first Tricorn game with Gareth Beamish since the 1990s.  It was Gareth who first turned Shako into Tricorn, so it was great to play a game with him again.  The scenario was the War of Austrian Succession Battle of Mollwitz.  Once again, I’ve completely failed to write up the game (yet), but as in the actual battle, my Prussians did better when the King wasn’t there…

Then Gareth Beamish put on a brilliant 6mm Samurai game, utilising his spectacular 6mm collection and his Tenka-Fubu rules.  This time I didn’t lose and with my record, forcing Gareth into a grinding, attritional bloodbath is something to be proud of!

In December I did a re-run of my Combat of Zinna 1759 scenario with Al ‘Skippy’ Broughton.  As in the previous game against Andy James, the scenario was a proper nail-biter, though this time with victory going (undeservedly) to my Prussians, thanks to some very lucky dice-rolling by my solitary dragoon brigade and some very unlucky dice-rolling on Al’s part, when rolling for army morale, just as his cavalry was about to roll up my left flank.  I’m not proud, but I’ll take that one…  Sadly, having taken a couple of photos at the start of the game, I completely forgot to take any more, so there won’t be a game report:

Finally to round off the year, we refought the SYW Battle of Warburg, which was a great game, in excellent company.  My thanks to Al Broughton, Kirk French, Bruce Castle, Mark Castle, Tane Castle, Dave Llewellyn and Gareth Beamish.  Commiserations to Andy James, who once again pulled a sickie (get well soon, mate).  The game-report will be on here soon and no spoilers, but once again I was left wondering if this really is the hobby for me…

There were some other games throughout the year, but they were mostly board-games and I didn’t bother photographing those!  I lost them for the most part…

Aside from the painting and the wargaming, I also posted some profiles of my 28mm AWI collection, featuring some units painted 15-20 years ago, as well as some painted in late 2022, starting with the British Elite Corps:

Then some Rebels:

And some More Rebels:

Then there was the Grand Parade of the completed Reichsarmee:

On the scenario-writing front, I’m afraid that this year it was all Seven Years War and War of Austrian Succession.  I wrote scenarios for the Battle of Mollwitz 1741, the Combat of Pretzsch 1759, the Combat of Strehla 1760, the Battle of Warburg 1760 and the Battle of Clostercamp 1760.

I had hoped to post a load of scenarios, orbats and profiles from other periods, but never got around to it!  So my apologies to the ACW, Napoleonic and 20th Century enthusiasts.  I’ll try to do better in 2024 and I’ve already made a start on writing up the above-mentioned Murfreesboro mini-scenario, as well as my megalomaniacal scenario for the colossal Battle of Bautzen 1813, which we did as a demo-game in the mid-1990s.  I’ve also found a forgotten Normandy scenario that I’d never got around to publishing on the Fire & Fury Games (Battlefront: WWII) page, so that will also be here soon, along with another flurry of WAS and SYW scenarios for Tricorn, some of which are already written.

Additionally, I’ve recently found a load of old photographs, including our 1999 AB Figures Mega-Game of the Battle of Eggmühl 1809, so I’ll get those scanned in and posted up (once I’ve photoshopped Dave Brown out of most of the shots):

I’ve also recently started a Franco-Prussian War of 1870 campaign via e-mail, so expect some reports from that once it gets going.  It would also be nice to do some Napoleonic games again, as well as some ACW battles other than Murfreesboro!

And perhaps this will finally be the year that I finish the 255th Indian Tank Brigade article and fix the blog to restore the sign-up function… 🙁

Anyway, Happy New Year!  Here’s hoping that you all have a wonderful 2024 (unless you’re Russian, obvs)!

Slava Ukraini

Posted in Annual Reviews | 14 Comments

Reinforcements for King Louis! (Part 6: The Mestre de Camp Général Dragoons (Santa’s Own))

As it’s Christmas, I thought I’d share with you what is possibly the most festive all all regiments, the French Mestre de Camp Général Dragoons in their Santa hats?! 🙂

The regiment was first raised in 1674 as the Tessé Dragoons, but in 1684 became the Mestre de Camp Général Dragoons (not to be confused with the Mestre de Camp Général Cavalry Regiment) and retained that title until the Revolution, when it became the 2nd Dragoons.

The regiment was almost constantly engaged in central Europe against the Pragmatic Army throughout the War of Austrian Succession.  However, during the Seven Years War it was only engaged on campaign from 1757 to 1759, during which time it fought at the Battle of Hastenbeck (dismounted) and at the Battle of Krefeld.  After Krefeld the regiment was withdrawn to France on coastal-defence duties.

French dragoon regiments during this period were much stronger than the vast majority of the heavy cavalry regiments.  Each dragoon regiment had four squadrons, each of four companies, for a total of 694 men at full strength (including officers and regimental staff), increasing slightly in 1757 to 710 men.  This means that for Tricorn, I represent each dragoon regiment as a separate unit of 12 figures.

At the start of the Seven Years War, there were sixteen regular dragoon regiments.  Twelve of these wore red coats, while four regiments wore blue coats.  Headgear for the regular dragoons was either a cocked hat or the distinctive pokalem stocking-cap, which was a traditional item of dress for the dragoons.  A seventeenth regular dragoon regiment was created in 1762 from the Schomberg Volunteer Dragoons and their very different uniform of green coat and brass helmets would eventually become the standard pattern of dress for all French dragoon regiments.

French dragoons were unusual during this period in that they were still mostly used for scouting and flanking and were expected to routinely fight on foot.  In almost all other armies, the dragoons had become a medium-heavy class of shock cavalry.  The French dragoons therefore, were armed with infantry-pattern muskets and bayonets and retained buckled leather gaiters (known as bottines) to theoretically allow ease of movement when fighting dismounted.  However, shortly after the start of the Seven Years War, bottines were rapidly replaced by shoes and white canvas gaiters when a unit was fighting on foot.

Most of the red-coated dragoon regiments started the Seven Years war with plain red coats and waistcoats, though these were heavily decorated with white buttonhole lace on the breast, cuffs, pockets and waistcoats, white metal buttons and a white aiguillette on the right shoulder.  Regiments were therefore identified by the colour/pattern of the lace band around the edge of the horse furniture and the upper edge of the turn-up of the pokalem.  In the case of the Mestre de Camp Général Dragoons, the lace edge during the 1740s was plain white , though during the 1750s changed to plain black.  The regiment also had a badge on the horse furniture, showing three crossed standards in red, white and blue.

Then in 1757, most dragoon regiments had a facing colour added to their cuffs and the pokalem turn-up.  For the Mestre de Camp Général Regiment, the new facing colour was white.  The lace edge-colour also changed back to white, which at this scale is impossible to see on white facings, making the cuffs and pokalem turn-up just look plain white.

The observant will therefore have noticed that I’ve painted this regiment in the uniform it wore just as it was being withdrawn from front-line combat… I just really liked the look of a regiment of Santas…

Each squadron carried a swallow-tailed, gold-fringed guidon of the same pattern for each squadron.  This was blue on the obverse, scattered with small gold fleurs-de-lys, superimposed with the usual golden sun-badge and a white scroll bearing the motto ‘NEC PLURIBUS IMPAR’.  The reverse was plain white with the motto ‘VICTORIA PINGET’ (some sources show this motto in a scroll).

The musicians’ livery for the regiment isn’t known for certain.  The arms of the Colonel, Marie François Henri de Franquetot, Comte de Coigny were red, with a yellow horizontal central band, three yellow crescents (two above and one below) and three blue stars superimposed on the yellow band.  With the dominant armorial colours being yellow and red, coats in these colours would seem to be as good a fit as any.  As it happens, I’ve since discovered that the first uniform for the Tessé Dragoons was a yellow coat with red cuffs, so this (accidentally) links back to the regiment’s past.

The models here are 18mm Eureka Miniatures and the guidon is by Maverick Models.

Anyway, have a Very Merry Christmas!  I hope that unlike mine, your family gives you lots of what you ACTUALLY want for Christmas (models, books, etc) and that you manage to get some Christmas wargaming in.  We’ll be doing out Christmas refight of Warburg on the 27th, so more of that soon.  Cheers!

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Seven Years War French Army | 2 Comments

‘King George Commands And We Obey’: My 15mm SYW British Army (Part 4: Highlanders)

As discussed last time, we’re going to be refighting the Battle of Warburg over Christmas and for that game I’m going to need some extra British units, namely the two regiments of Highlanders serving in Germany (the 87th (Keith’s) and 88th (Campbell’s)), an additional grenadier battalion and basically all of the British cavalry regiments in Germany, barring the 15th Light Dragoons.

The surviving readers of this blog might remember me saying in Part 1 of this series that my plan was to build my SYW British army based on the order of battle of the Battle of Minden.  However, I’ve since realised that this order of battle does limit my scenario options somewhat, as the British contingent in Germany more than doubled in size immediately after Minden and many of the post-Minden battles featured Beckwith’s ‘elite corps’ comprising two battalions of grenadiers and two battalions of Highlanders (there was only a single battalion of British grenadiers at Minden).

I therefore needed to paint some Highlander skirmishers for our refight of the Battle of Clostercamp last September and I also got carried away, painting the Légion Britannique on a whim.  Since the Clostercamp game I’ve managed to paint both of the formed Highlander battalions, as well as all of the required British cavalry for Warburg (an additional 36 cavalry figures over and above what I’d already painted for Minden).  The only British unit I haven’t finished for Warburg is the additional British grenadier battalion, so I’ll use the 23rd Royal Welch Fusiliers as they’re wearing suitably-pointy hats. 🙂

Anyway, to the Highlanders… These are Eureka Miniatures 18mm figures with flags by Maverick Models.  As with the rest of Eureka’s SYW British infantry, they’re wonderful, character-filled models, but are carrying incorrect banded muskets, which is a shame.

If you’re interested in the painting above, it shows a battalion of Highlanders conducting musketry drill on Glasgow Green, circa 1758.  The battalion is advancing in closed column of platoons.  As the lead platoon fires a volley, the rest wait their turn and one platoon can be seen retiring, having fired its volley.  I presume that this manoeuvre was more suitable for musketry drill than a battlefield tactic.  This unit is almost certainly the 2nd Battalion of the 42nd Royal Highland Regiment (Black Watch), which was formed in 1758 and shipped out to Guadeloupe later that same year (the 1st Battalion was already fighting in America and would later be joined by the 2nd Battalion).  The regiment was still wearing buff facings in 1758, but would change in 1759 to blue (as befitting its newly-awarded ‘Royal’ title).

Sir Robert Murray Keith the Younger circa 1771

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  This regiment was initially raised in August 1759 by Major Robert Murray Keith ‘the Younger’.  His father Robert Murray Keith ‘the Elder’ was a diplomat in Austrian service.  He was also a nephew of the famed Marshal James Francis Edward Keith, who was killed fighting with Frederick the Great’s army at Hochkirch in 1758.  Robert Murray Keith the Younger had previously served with the Dutch Scottish Brigade, then with the 73rd Regiment of Foot and latterly as aide-de-camp to the disgraced Lord Sackville.

Consequently, Murray was tasked with carrying Sackville’s letter of resignation back to London and while there was ordered by William Pitt the Elder to take command of three newly-raised companies of Highland Volunteers at Perth, who would now become the 87th Regiment (these three companies had been raised around a cadre taken from the 42nd Royal Highlanders).

The portrait on the right shows the newly-knighted Keith wearing the 1768 pattern of uniform, complete with the sash and breast-star of the Order of the Bath, to which he was appointed in 1771.  Although his regiment had been disbanded in 1763, it was his last military appointment, so he clearly had a new uniform tailored in the new style, though in his old regimental colourings.  He would be appointed as Colonel of the 10th Foot in 1781 (who wore yellow facings).

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  Keith’s three companies of Highlanders were sent to Germany in November 1759 to join Ferdinand of Brunswick’s army.  Initially tasked with joining the petit-guerre of raiding and reconnaissance.  With cattle-raiding in the blood, the Highlanders proved to be naturally adept in this role and greatly impressed Ferdinand, who requested that the unit be expanded to a full battalion.  Therefore, in early 1760 a further five companies were dispatched to Germany, thus establishing a weak battalion of eight companies.

However, one company was soon captured by the French and a further two companies were later detached to bring the 88th Highlanders up to strength (a cadre of officers and NCOs had already been detached in January 1760 to form the core of the new 88th) and it’s not clear if the battalion ever replaced these lost companies, let alone reach the full establishment of ten companies.  Nevertheless, the two Highland battalions in Germany were considered to be something of an elite and were brigaded with the two British grenadier battalions under the command of Colonel John Beckwith of the 20th Foot, fighting at the battles of Warburg, Clostercamp and Vellinghausen, as well as numerous small actions.

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  Traditionally considered to be light infantry experts of the petit-guerre, the Highlanders in Germany also proved themselves more than capable of fighting alongside other regiments in the line and at Vellinghausen demonstrated their fearsome ability to conduct close assaults.

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  This regiment wore the typical short Highland jacket in red.  This garment lacked lapels and tails, though had cuffs and collar in the facing colour.  There is some debate in sources as to whether the regiment wore green or buff facings.  The original cadre taken from the 42nd Regiment would have initially worn the buff facings of their old regiment, but it’s clear that the regiment soon changed to green facings, as modelled by Captain James Gorry on the right and Colonel Keith above.

The front seams and bottom edge of the jacket were edged with white lace, as were the collar and pockets.  The front of the jacket and the pockets were decorated with bastion-shaped lace loops and the cuff-slash was decorated with a ‘ladder’ of lace up the lower sleeve.  Sources are split over whether or not the cuffs themselves were edged with lace; I’ve gone with edging as it looks rather nice.  Officers’ lace was gold and they had a gold aiguillette on the right shoulder (note that Captain Gorry has lace edging to his cuffs, which tends to suggest that the rank-and-file may also have had lace edging to their cuffs).  Officers and NCOs wore crimson sashes over the left shoulder.

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  Waistcoats were red, with white lace edging and buttonhole lace.  However, officers often wore fashionable buff waistcoats, as modelled by Captain Gorry above.  Kilts were of the standard Government sett of dark green with green-blue stripes and blue squares where the stripes meet.  The stripes are edged and over-striped in black.  However, while I have in the past done the ‘full fig’ with fine black lining, this time I just went for ‘impressionist’ tartan, leaving out the black lining.  To be honest, it looks no bloody different when viewed on the tabletop! 🙂  The excess kilt-material was pinned up behind the left shoulder and a black or dark brown ‘purse’ (sporran) was worn at the front, along with a couple of scabbarded sgian dubh daggers and a black belly-box, decorated with the crowned ‘GR’ cypher.

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  Belts and scabbards were black with brass fittings and buckles.  All ranks carried a broadsword which had a steel basket-hilt, lined with red cloth.  This was suspended from a broad black belt worn over the right shoulder.  Hose were the universal red-and-white diced pattern, held up with red garters.

Aside from the Grenadier Company, all ranks wore a blue Highland bonnet, decorated with a cockade in the form of a bunch or bow of black ribbons, worn over the left ear.  Details for these bonnets could vary from regiment to regiment, though Kronoskaf shows the 87th Regiment’s bonnet as having a white band and blue tourie (pompom), matching the colour of the bonnet.

As for the regiment’s grenadier caps, Kronoskaf describes the black fur bearskin typical of all Highland grenadier companies, with a red front plate bearing a crowned ‘GR’ cypher in white and edged in white.  The ‘monkey’s arse’ at the back was typically red and decorated with the white running horse of Hanover or the regimental number.  However, there is some debate as to whether or not the 87th Regiment actually formed a grenadier company.  They certainly weren’t attached to the massed grenadier battalions, so if they did actually exist, the grenadier companies of the 87th and 88th remained with their parent battalions.

Above:  The 87th Regiment of Foot (Keith’s Highlanders).  The regiment’s drummers were dressed in reverse colours; i.e. green jackets with collar, cuffs and waistcoat in red.  Lace decoration was ‘as the Colonel saw fit’ and as there is no record of what they wore, I’ve kept it reasonably plain and simple.  Tartan was probably the Royal Stewart sett, which at that time consisted of green stripes (in pairs or threes), over red, with fine over-striping of white and yellow.  Again, I’ve gone for ‘impressionist tartan’ and haven’t bothered with the over-striping.  Drums had red edges and the front part was painted in the facing colour, with the crowned royal cypher and regimental number.

Bagpipers are a thorny topic and difficult to research.  Instead of being enlisted men, they were actually the personal property of the Colonel, who could dress them as he saw fit.  In this instance, I’ve dressed the piper in the same uniform as the drummer, though ordinary red coats were also common.  I’ve also read that they were not considered ‘non-combatants’, so were not entitled to reversed colours (the reversed colours of musicians symbolised the livery of a non-combatant Mediaeval herald).  This may well be a myth and I’ve certainly found examples of pipers in America wearing reversed colours.

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  This regiment was formed at Stirling on 1st January 1760 around a cadre taken from the 87th Highlanders.  Initially numbering 800 men (number of companies unknown), two additional companies were eventually transferred from the 87th.

The regiment’s Colonel was John Campbell of Dunoon (so titled to distinguish him from other high-ranking John Campbells of the period, such as the Duke of Argyll and Lord Cawdor), formerly of the 78th Regiment of Foot (Fraser’s Highlanders).  He led the regiment with distinction throughout its existence, until its disbandment in 1763.

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  Sources are again split as to whether this regiment wore green or buff facings.  However, there are this time no portraits or other pictures from the period to give us a clue and as a consequence, I’ve gone for buff, just to make them look different from the 87th.

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  All other details of uniform and equipment for the 88th are exactly the same as the 87th, except the the officers’ lace colour was now silver.

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  Again the drummers of the 88th were dressed in reversed colours with Royal Stewart tartan.  However, this time I’ve opted to dress the piper in the regular red coat of the rank-and-file.

The sharp-eyed might have noticed that the regimental numbers on the colours are the wrong way round (LXXXVIII for the 87th and LXXXVII for the 88th)!  This is basically down Kronoskaf showing a buff colour for the 87th and a green colour for the 88th and Maverick Models then following suit with their lovely flags.  Thanks to the portraits shown above, it’s safe to say that the 87th had green facings, so I’ve given them the green colour and the buff colour to the 88th.  I’ll be very impressed if anyone can read those Roman numerals from more than 6 inches away…

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  Some skirmishers for the regiment.

Above:  The 88th Regiment of Foot (Campbell’s Highlanders).  The skirmishers again.

Above:  Colonel John Beckwith (20th Regiment of Foot).  In 1759, as a Lieutenant Colonel John Beckwith commanded the 20th Regiment of Foot (Kingsley’s) at the Battle of Minden.  Following Minden, Beckwith was promoted to full Colonel and was appointed to lead a brigade consisting of the two newly-arrived Highland regiments (87th and 88th) and the two combined British grenadier battalions (Maxwell’s and Daulhat’s), which he led with remarkable aggression and élan at the Battles of Warburg, Clostercamp and Vellinghausen.

Above:  Colonel John Beckwith (20th Regiment of Foot).  Following almost two years excellent service as commander of the elite brigade, Beckwith had still not received his deserved promotion to Major General.  However, he had a cunning plan.  In late 1761, he wrote to the King of Prussia, recommending that the Légion Britannique, then about to be disbanded from Hanoverian service, be taken into Prussian service, with Beckwith as commanding officer at the rank of Major General.  Frederick was apparently enthused by the idea, as he needed troops to secure his western enclaves.  He therefore adopted the Légion Britannique into Prussian service and appointed the newly-ennobled Major General von Beckwith to command them.

Above:  Colonel John Beckwith (20th Regiment of Foot).  Being commissioned into the 20th Foot, Beckwith would probably have worn a variation on his old regimental uniform, which had pale yellow facings and silver lace.

Anyway, that’s it for now.  I’m hoping to get another post up on Christmas Day, while Mrs Fawr bustles around the place, but if not, please do have a Very Merry Christmas!  These lads are already getting into the Christmas spirit… 🙂

Posted in 15mm Figures, Eighteenth Century, Painted Units, Seven Years War British & Hanoverian Armies, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules) | 12 Comments

‘Going At It Bald-Headed!’: The Battle of Warburg 31st July 1760 (A Scenario for ‘Tricorn’)

As mentioned last time, we sadly had to bin our recent plans to put on the Battle of Warburg as a demo-game at the Tenby Games Festival.  Nevertheless, that’s given me time to finish a few of the missing units and we’re going to run it at WASP as our Big Christmas Game. 🙂

So here’s the scenario, as designed for Tricorn rules (our 18th Century variant of Shako Napoleonic rules), though it should be easily convertible to other rulesets.

I include two maps; the ‘full-fat’ 6′ x 12′ version and the compressed-frontage 6′ x 8′ map we were going to use at Tenby, due to limited table-space.  I’m not sure yet if the Big Christmas Game is going to be on the large map or the small map.

Historical Background

Marshal de Broglie

At the end of June 1760, the French Grande Armée under Marshal de Broglie, invaded Hesse, quickly capturing the city of Marburg.  Reeling from this blow, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick’s Allied army attempted to stop Broglie from combining his army with the French Armée du Bas-Rhin at Corbach, but was defeated and was steadily out-manoeuvred by the huge French force, which now threatened to take Cassel, the capital city of the Allied power of Hessen-Cassel!

Attempting to regain the initiative, Prince Ferdinand ordered the Hanoverian Lieutenant General von Spörcken and the Hereditary Prince (Erbprinz) of Brunswick to establish a bridgehead west of the River Diemel; this they succeeded in doing on 29th July.

Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick

Observing the Allied move over the Diemel, Broglie decided to counter it, ordering Fischer’s light troops to seize the crossing-point on the Diemel at the town of Warburg.  The Chevalier du Muy then led his corps over the river and establish his own bridgehead on a narrow ridge extending northwestward from the town.

The French crossing of the Diemel had not gone unnoticed, however.  The Erbprinz had carefully reconnoitered du Muy’s position and although the French force slightly outnumbered the Allied forces on the west bank of the Diemel, the Erbprinz was confident that he could use a line of hills to mask his troops’ march as they outflanked de Muy to attack his rear.  Prince Ferdinand broadly agreed with this plan, but insisted that the Erbprinz and Spörcken were not to begin their march until he could bring the rest of the army over the Diemel, thus bringing the full weight of the army to crush du Muy.

Chevalier du Muy

On 30th July, Prince Ferdinand’s army struck camp and set out on a night-march to join the attack.  However, although the following dawn brought a thick mist to aid the concealment of the Allied march, Prince Ferdinand’s army was very slow in crossing the Diemel.  With time and opportunity slipping away, the Erbprinz and Spörcken decided to go against their orders and started their march without Prince Ferdinand.  Although Spörcken was the senior officer, this was the Erbprinz‘s plan and Spörcken graciously deferred command of the operation to the Erbprinz.

Far from being angry at his orders being disobeyed, Prince Ferdinand realised that his column was never going to make it in time and clearly appreciated the initiative shown by his officers.  Consequently, he ordered the British Lieutenant General John Manners, Marquess of Granby, to take the massed British cavalry (24 squadrons) and make best speed to ride to the Erbprinz‘s aid.  Alongside them galloped the talented artillerist Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe with two batteries of British artillery moving at ‘astonishing’ speed; the gunners desperately hanging on to guns, limbers and horse-teams as best they could!

Carl Wilhelm Ferdinand, Erbprinz of Brunswick

In the meantime, Major von Bülow’s Légion Britannique had been making a nuisance of themselves in front of the town of Warburg, making a feint to keep du Muy’s attention fixed in that area.  As a consequence on the morning of 31st July, it was actually the French who made the first move, as the Marquis de Castries massed all the grenadier and chasseur companies from du Muy’s infantry battalions and with assistance from the Chasseurs de Fischer and some dragoons, drove back the Légion Britannique.

With French attention now fixed on their right flank and their reserves deployed to that sector, the Erbprinz now struck on the opposite flank!  Preceded by the 87th and 88th Highlanders, the Allied columns appeared between the villages of Ossendorf and Menne.  Most worryingly for the French, a pair of red-coated battalions was marching hard for the Hein-Berg.  This conical hill, topped with a mediaeval watch-tower, was situated deep in the French rear.  It dominated the main French crossing-point and therefore their line of retreat over the Diemel.

Marquis de Castries

The two red-coated battalions were Maxwell’s and Daulhat’s battalions of British Grenadiers and were being driven hard by Colonel John Beckwith, who had commanded the 20th Foot at Minden, but who now commanded the British Contingent’s Grenadiers and Highlanders.  Spotting the immediate threat to his line of retreat, du Muy ordered the Bourbonnais Brigade to pull out of the line and capture the Hein-Berg before the British did; the race was on!

Seeing the French counter-move, Beckwith called ten grenadiers to him and they sprinted to the top of the top of the Hein-Berg!  The gasping grenadiers then quickly established a tiny firing-line and delivered volleys into the first Bourbonnais battalion to climb the slope.  They were soon joined by another twenty grenadiers led by the Erbprinz himself and shortly afterwards by the rest of Daulhat’s battalion.  The initial French counter-attack was repulsed by this tiny force, but they soon rallied and attacked again!  Dalhaut’s hard-pressed grenadiers were on the verge of breaking when Maxwell’s grenadier battalion arrived and threw the Bourbonnais Regiment back for a second time.

Von Spörcken

The battle for the Hein-Berg quickly escalated as the Erbprinz ordered the 87th Highlanders, 88th Highlanders and two of the Hanoverian grenadier battalions into the fight and even managed to establish some guns on the steep hill.  Du Muys for his part, threw the La Couronne, d’Aumont, Rouergue and Rohan-Rochefort Regiments up the hill, while the Marquis de Castries brought his massed elite companies from the far right flank, leaving the Chasseurs de Fischer to hold Warburg.

With almost half of the French infantry now committed to recapturing the Hein-Berg, the Marquis de Ségur’s left wing of the main position was dangerously weakened; a fact that had not gone unnoticed by the Allies.  Covered by heavy artillery fire from the heights to their rear, Spörcken’s and Zastrow’s divisions assaulted the French left flank, utterly crushing it.

Marquis de Ségur

D’Amenzaga’s four Swiss regiments (the Planta, Lochmann, Jenner & Courten Regiments) attempted to stabilise the situation, but were also thrown back by the Allied assault.  Whole French battalions broke into disorganised mobs and fled south to the Diemel and the possibility of safety on the opposite bank, though many were cut down or captured before they reached safety.  A magnificent charge by the British 1st (Royal) and 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons completed the destruction of the French left wing.

Recognising that the day was lost, du Muy ordered his remaining artillery and the unengaged infantry of Maupeou’s right wing (the Enghien, Touraine and La Tour-du-Pin Regiments) to retire to the Diemel, covered by the cavalry and to hold the river crossings.  However, the Marquess of Granby had arrived…

Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe

As Granby deployed his cavalry, Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe galloped forward with his two batteries of British light artillery, laying down extremely effective supporting fire for the British cavalry.

Granby meanwhile, quickly formed his cavalry into two lines, extending roughly eastward from the village of Menne.  In the first line were the heaviest cavalry; three squadrons of the Royal Horse Guards, seven squadrons of Dragoon Guards and four squadrons of Horse.  These were followed by six squadrons of Dragoons.  Without waiting for further orders, Granby led them straight toward the French position at the gallop.  In so doing, his hat and wig flew off, leaving his bald head shining in the sun, which reputedly served as an effective reference point for the squadrons following behind!

John Manners, Marquess of Granby

This incident reputedly gave rise to the phrase ‘Going at it bald-headed’, meaning to rush straight in without heed of the consequences and is beautifully modelled in 18mm by Eureka Miniatures (see below).

As perhaps is clear from the above account, the French army was already defeated at this point, so Granby’s celebrated charge was perhaps too late in the day but it is a spectacular moment in history and worth seeing on the wargames table! 🙂

The bulk of the French cavalry had already begun to withdraw by the time Granby launched his charge, but two French cavalry brigades, the Royal-Piémont and Bourbon Brigades, were sent forward to meet them (French brigades were named for the senior regiment present.  Each brigade consisted of three regiments, each of two squadrons).  Sadly for the French cavalry, the Royal-Piémont Brigade fled before the British cavalry had even made contact!  The Bourbon Brigade however, was made of sterner stuff and made a successful charge on the flank of the 1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards.  However, the Royal Horse Guards (‘The Blues’) rode to the recue and the French cavalry were completely beaten within two minutes!  The British cavalry now fell upon the flank and rear of what was left of the French left wing.


In the meantime, Bülow’s Légion Britannique, having retreated from Castries’ elite battalions during the morning, now came back in strength and overwhelmed the defenders of Warburg.  The Chasseurs de Fischer sustained heavy casualties as they attempted the hold the crumbling mediaeval walls of the old town, but the survivors were soon forced to join the great mass of fugitives heading for the Diemel as Bülow’s band of ruffians stormed the town!

The French Touraine Brigade (consisting of two battalions each of the Touraine and Enghien Infantry Regiments) had been unengaged on the left wing and was now holding the river crossings, allowing the French cavalry and dragoons to retreat over the bridges.  They were soon joined by the four battalions of the La Tour-du-Pin Regiment  However, the bridges soon became blocked by baggage, forcing many of the retreating French units to swim the Diemel.

Von Hardenberg

To add to French misery, Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe now galloped up with his two batteries of British artillery and began bombarding the crossing-point, throwing the retreating units into utter disarray!  Du Muy now gave up any thought of trying to hold the Diemel crossings and ordered a full retreat to Volkmarsen, some 10km to the south.  There he encountered the head of de Broglie’s main army.  To his credit, de Broglie, his army having been delayed from coming to du Muy’s aid by thick fog, took full responsibility for the defeat.  The French had lost 1,600 men killed and wounded, 78 officers and 2,100 men taken prisoner (mostly from the infantry regiments of the left and centre), 28 ammunition wagons and 12 artillery pieces.  Part of the French baggage had also been captured off the battlefield by Scheither’s Hanoverian Freikorps.

On the Allied side, Frederick of Brunswick ordered Granby to take the cavalry and 12 battalions of infantry across the Diemel to maintain the pursuit, while the rest of the army settled into camp among the ruins of the former French camp.  The Allies had lost 66 officers and 1,173 men, mostly from the British contingent.  Although a decisive tactical victory for the Allies, de Broglie’s colossal Grande Armée still had a massive superiority in arms.  However, this victory allowed Ferdinand to clear his lines of communication and successfully escape the trap that Broglie was constructing.  For the British, the magnificent performance of both Granby’s cavalry and the two British dragoon regiments under the Erbprinz‘s command, completely restored their reputation and undid the shame of the British cavalry’s inaction at Minden the previous year.

Scenario Outline

This scenario lasts 20 turns.

Each army is deployed as per the scenario map (below), though refer to the Order of Battle notes for each side, where there are some clarifications and options for deployment.

Position Batteries start the game unlimbered and their facing may be adjusted before the start of the game.  Battalion Guns may be distributed within their formations as the owning player sees fit and may be limbered or unlimbered.

The main scenario map is scaled to 12 x 6 feet, assuming my usual scale of five battalions (without intervals) per table foot of frontage.

Granby’s command will arrive during the Movement Phase of Turn 8, anywhere between Points A & B on the scenario map.  Granby’s cavalry regiments will arrive in deployed in line formation, arrayed in two lines, as described in the order of battle below.  Schaumburg-Lippe’s two British batteries are deployed anywhere within Granby’s command-radius.  Granby’s command may move a full move on to table during the turn in which they arrive (the first line is completely made up of heavy cavalry regiments, which move 10 inches).

Although Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick isn’t represented in the game, he is close-by, observing the battle and will give Granby his orders as he arrives on the battlefield.  Granby’s orders may therefore be issued as he arrives on the table.

Any army that manages to break the opposing army will win a Decisive Victory.

French formations may be ordered to retreat from the battlefield between Points C & D on the scenario map (below).  Just give them ‘Retreat’ orders and a new command arrow ending at the table-edge between those two points.  Formations with ‘Retreat’ orders behave in the same manner as those on ‘Attack’ orders (i.e. must move at least half move toward their destination and may charge enemy units), but once ordered to ‘Retreat’, the order may not be changed.  Any artillery units within a Retreating formation and  not within 4 inches of the front of a formed enemy unit (blown cavalry don’t count) may limber up for ‘free’, though once limbered they may not be unlimbered.

Any French formation successfully retreated from the battlefield between Points C & D will not count against army morale.  The overall result will still be a French defeat, but this may prevent the defeat from becoming a Decisive Defeat.

Sole Allied possession of the top contour of the Hein-Berg will be the equivalent of 10 morale points suffered by the French army.

For those who can’t stretch to a 12-foot table, I’ve also done this compressed version of the map, adjusted to 8 x 6 feet (below).  I actually did this as the result of limited space at the show we were due to attend, but thought it might work rather well and I may well use this compressed version of the table for our Christmas game at WASP.

The Advanced Guard of the Allied Army

Carl Wilhelm Ferdinand, Hereditary Prince (Erbprinz) of Brunswick

(Good (2 d6) & 2 ADCs)

Vanguard – Colonel John Beckwith (Excellent)
British Grenadier Battalion ‘Daulhat’¹      [5/2]
British Grenadier Battalion ‘Maxwell’¹      [5/2]
British 87th Highlanders (Keith’s)²      [5/2]
British 88th Highlanders (Campbell’s)²      [5/2]

Right Wing Infantry – Generallieutenant August Friedrich von Spörcken (Excellent)
Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Wersabé’¹      [5/2]
Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Bock’¹      [5/2]
Hanoverian Grenadier Battalion ‘Geyso’¹      [5/2]
Hanoverian Infantry Regiment ‘Scheither’¹      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hanoverian Infantry Regiment ‘Estorff’¹      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hanoverian Infantry Regiment ‘Post’¹      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hanoverian Infantry Regiment ‘Block’²      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hanoverian Infantry Regiment ‘Monroy’²      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hanoverian Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Hanoverian Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]

Right Wing Cavalry – Generallieutenant Christian Ludewig von Hardenberg (Average)
4 Sqns, Hanoverian Dragoon Regiment ‘Breydenbach’¹      [5/2]
2 Sqns, British 1st (Royal) Dragoons (Conway’s)¹      } [5/2]
2 Sqns, British 7th (Queen’s Own) Dragoons (Cope’s)¹      } [combined with above]
2 Sqns, Hessian Horse Regiment ‘Ensiedel’²      } [6/2]
2 Sqns, Hessian Horse Regiment ‘Prüschenck’²      } [combined with above]

Centre – Generallieutenant Georg Ludwig von Zastrow (Good)
Hessian Infantry Regiment ‘4. Garde’¹      [5/2 – Large Unit]
Brunswick Grenadier Battalion ‘Witdorf’¹      [5/2]
Brunswick Grenadier Battalion ‘Stammer’¹      [5/2]
Brunswick Grenadier Battalion ‘Redecker’¹      [5/2]
Hessian Landgrenadierregiment²      [4/1]
Hessian Infantry Regiment ‘Toll’²      [4/1 – Large Unit]
Hessian Grenadier Battalion ‘Mirbach’³      [5/2]
Hessian Grenadier Battalion ‘Papenheim’³      [5/2]
Hessian Grenadier Battalion ‘Rückersfeld’³      [5/2]
Brunswick Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Hessian Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Hessian Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]

Centre Cavalry (Average)
4 Sqns, Hanoverian Dragoon Regiment ‘Bock’     [5/2]
4 Sqns, Hanoverian Dragoon Regiment ‘Reden’     [5/2]
2 Sqns, Hanoverian Horse Regiment ‘Bremer’      [combined with above]

Left Wing (Légion Britannique) – Major August Christian Freiherr von Bülow (Excellent)
Hattorf’s 5 Sqns, Légion Britannique Dragoons (poor)      [4/1]
Stockhausen’s (I.) Battalion, Légion Britannique      [3/0]
Udam’s (II.) Battalion, Légion Britannique      [3/0]
Appelboom’s (III.) Battalion, Légion Britannique      [3/0]
De Laune’s (IV.) Battalion, Légion Britannique      [3/0]
Fircks’ (V.) Battalion, Légion Britannique      [3/0]
Hanoverian Battalion Guns      [2/0]

British Cavalry Division – Lieutenant General John Manners Marquess of Granby (Excellent)
3 Sqns, 1st (King’s) Dragoon Guards (Bland’s)¹      [6/2]
2 Sqns, 3rd Dragoon Guards (Howard’s)¹      [6/2]
2 Sqns, 2nd (Queen’s) Dragoon Guards (The Bays or Waldegrave’s)¹      [combined with above]
3 Sqns, Royal Horse Guards (The Blues)¹      [6/2]
2 Sqns, 4th Regiment of Horse (The Black Horse or Honeywood’s)¹      [6/2]
2 Sqns, 3rd Regiment of Horse (Carabiniers or Dejean’s)¹      [combined with above]
2 Sqns, 2nd (Royal North British) Dragoons (The Scots Greys or Campbell’s)²      [5/2]
2 Sqns, 10th Dragoons (Mordaunt’s)²      [combined with above]
2 Sqns, 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons (Cholmondley’s)²      [5/2]
2 Sqns, 11th Dragoons (Ancram’s)²      [combined with above]
British Horse Battery      [3/0]
British Horse Battery      [3/0]

Allied Order of Battle Notes

1.  Hessen-Cassel infantry regiments actually consisted of two battalions from 1760 onward.  However, these reorganised regiments were no stronger than the previous single-battalion regiments, so for game purposes are still classed as single Large Units.  Nevertheless, the Landgrenadierregiment was organised as a single battalion of four companies (like the combined grenadier battalions), so doesn’t class as a Large Unit.

2.  The Hessian Langrenadierregiment was formed from the massed grenadier companies of the Landmilitia regiments.  While the Landmilitia regiments performed competently enough in the field, I decided to class this unit as MR 4 instead of MR 5.

3.  In most cases, the Allied cavalry regiments are rather small and are brigaded together into combined units for game purposes.

4.  The talented artillerist Count William of Schaumburg-Lippe led the two British artillery brigades in close support of Granby’s cavalry.  His guns followed the cavalry with a speed that ‘amazed all onlookers’ (presumably by mounting the gunners on horseback and/or on the guns and limbers) and succeeded in providing close and effective fire-support to the cavalry.  These two batteries may therefore be classed as Horse Artillery for the purposes of this scenario.

5.  The Hereditary Prince (Erbprinz) Carl Wilhelm Ferdinand of Brunswick should not be confused with his uncle, the Allied C-in-C, Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick.

6.  I have no information as to the identity of the ’26 heavy guns’ present with the Hereditary Prince’s force.  They were commanded by a Hessian Lieutenant Colonel, though could be Hessian, British, Hanoverian or Schaumburg-Lipper, so take your pick.

7.  The term ‘heavy artillery’ was often used to describe position batteries of any calibre (as opposed to small detachments of artillery parceled out as battalion guns).  Some or all of these ‘heavy’ batteries could therefore be ‘light artillery’ in game terms.  However, given their position on high ground well to the rear, it does seem very likely that these were long-ranged heavy guns.

8.  The small numbers next to unit names indicate their line within the formation (1st, 2nd or 3rd Line).  Units are always listed from right to left along their line.

9.  The two Highland battalions and the five battalions of the Légion Britannique may each deploy as two skirmisher stands.

10.  The Hanoverian ‘Bock’ and ‘Reden’ Dragoon Regiments are brigaded with the two squadrons of the ‘Bremer’ Horse.  However, the ‘Bremer’ Horse aren’t strong enough in game terms to be represented as a unit in their own right and in my opinion, don’t add enough manpower to beef the dragoons up to Large Unit status.

11.  Spörcken and Hardenberg are Hanoverian officers, Zastrow was a Brunswicker (Hanover, Brunswick and Prussia all had at least one Zastrow) and Bülow was a seconded Prussian officer.  Beckwith and Granby are British.

12.  The British Royal Horse Guards and 3rd & 4th Regiments of Horse are classed as Cuirassiers.  The British Dragoon Guards, Hessian Regiments of Horse and Hanoverian Regiments of Horse are not equipped with cuirasses and are therefore classed as Heavy Horse.  In Tricorn this only matters in the event of a draw during mêlée.  British and Hanoverian dragoons are simply classed as Dragoons, though Hattorf’s Légion Britannique Dragoons are rated as Poor Dragoons, so are MR 4.

13.  The name of Colonel Daulhat of the British grenadiers is also spelled ‘Dalhaut’ or ‘Daulhatt’ in some accounts, but the Daulhat family had a long history in the British Army and I’m sure this is the correct form of the name.

Allied Formation Breakpoints

Division                FMR      ⅓      ½      ¾

Beckwith                    20          7        10      15
Spörcken                    45         15      23      34
Hardenburg               16          6        8       12
Zastrow                      54         19      27      41
Centre Cavalry          10          4        5        8
Bülow (Leg. Brit.)    21           7       11       16
Granby                       40         14      20      30

Army                     FMR      ¼      ⅓      ½

Allied Army              207        52      69    104

The Advanced Guard of the Grande Armée

Lieutenant-Général Chevalier du Muy

(Average (1 d6) & 2 ADCs)

Right Flank-Guard (Chasseurs de Fischer) – Colonel Johann Christian Fischer (Poor)
4 Coys, Chasseurs à Pied de Fischer      [3/0]
4 Coys, Chasseurs à Pied de Fischer      [3/0]
4 Coys, Chasseurs à Cheval de Fischer      [4/1]
4 Coys, Chasseurs à Cheval de Fischer      [4/1]

Grenadiers & Chasseurs Réunis – Lieutenant-Général Marquis de Castries (Excellent)
1st Bn, Grenadiers-Réunis      [5/2]
2nd Bn, Grenadiers-Réunis     [5/2]
1st Bn, Chasseurs-Réunis      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Chasseurs-Réunis     [4/1]

Right Wing – Lieutenant-Général de Maupeou (Average)
1st Bn, La Tour-du-Pin Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, La Tour-du-Pin Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
3rd Bn, La Tour-du-Pin Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
4th Bn, La Tour-du-Pin Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Touraine Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Touraine Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Enghien Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Enghien Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]

Cavalry Right Wing – Lieutenant-Général Franz Walther von Lützelburg (Poor)
Royal-Étranger Cavalry Brigade (Royal-Étranger, Archiac & Saint-Aldegonde) (poor)      [5/2]
La Reine Cavalry Brigade (La Reine, Balincourt & Crussol) (poor)      [5/2]
Bourbon Cavalry Brigade (Bourbon, Beauvilliers & Montcalm) (poor)      [5/2]

Cavalry Left Wing – Lieutenant-Général Marquis d’Auvet (Good)
Royal-Piémont Cavalry Brigade (Royal-Piémont, Descars & Espinchal) (poor)      [5/2]
4 Sqns, Thianges Dragoon Regiment (poor)      [4/1]
4 Sqns, Royal Dragoon Regiment (poor)      [4/1]

Infantry Reserve – Mestre de Camp de Travers (Good)
1st Bn, Rouergue Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Rouergue Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Rohan-Rochefort Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Rohan-Rochefort Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
Battalion Guns      [2/0]

Left Wing – Lieutenant-Général Marquis d’Amenzaga (Average)
1st Bn, Planta Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Planta Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Lochmann Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Lochmann Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Jenner Swiss Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
2nd Bn, Jenner Swiss Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
1st Bn, Courten Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
2nd Bn, Courten Swiss Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]

Left Flank – Lieutenant-Général Marquis de Ségur (Good)
1st Bn, La Couronne Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
2nd Bn, La Couronne Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
1st Bn, D’Aumont Infantry Regiment       [4/1]
2nd Bn, D’Aumont Infantry Regiment      [4/1]
1st Bn, Bourbonnais Infantry Regiment (elite)       [5/2]
2nd Bn, Bourbonnais Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
3rd Bn, Bourbonnais Infantry Regiment (elite)      [5/2]
4th Bn, Bourbonnais Infantry Regiment (elite)       [5/2]
Battalion Guns      [2/0]
Heavy Artillery Battery      [3/0]

French Order of Battle Notes

1.  The term ‘heavy artillery’ was often used to describe position batteries of any calibre (as opposed to small detachments of artillery parceled out as battalion guns).  Some or all of these ‘heavy’ batteries could therefore be ‘light artillery’ in game terms.  However, I’ve classed them all here as pukka heavy guns.  In reality the 24 French heavy guns were grouped into five batteries, though I’ve rationalised this for game purposes as four batteries, each of six guns.

2.  The battalions of the Chasseurs à Pied de Fischer, the combined grenadiers and the combined chasseurs may each alternatively deploy as 2x Skirmishers.

3.  Unlike the dragoons of most other nations, which had become medium-weight shock cavalry, French dragoon regiments were still very much roled as mounted infantry, with shock action as a secondary role.  They are therefore classed as Poor Dragoons, with MR 4.  However, they may dismount and fight as infantry battalions with the same MR, or as 2x Skirmishers.

4.  The majority of French cavalry regiments were very weak at this time.  Most had only two weak squadrons, with an average campaign strength of only 240-260 men.  Consequently, in Tricorn a unit represents a brigade of three or four such regiments.  Note however, that these are classed as Poor Cuirassiers, so are MR 5.

5.  Muy’s left wing is deployed on an extremely compressed frontage.  Maps of the battle show the battalions as being deployed in a single line, but it seems likely that the brigades stationed on the left wing might have adopted the typical French deployment of deploying the right-hand battalion in each brigade en potence; i.e. at right-angles to the main line, to protect the brigade’s flank should the brigade on their right collapse.  The left-most brigade would then deploy its left-hand battalion en potence to protect the open flank (either in column facing the front, or in line facing the flank).  This style of deployment was used at other battles (most notably at Minden) and would give the remaining three battalions in each brigade room to deploy fully in line.  I’ve shown this deployment on the scenario map.

6.  These is little information on the exact deployment of Castries’ temporary corps of massed grenadiers and chasseurs.  This formation had been formed early in the day, from the massed grenadier and chasseur companies of the army and had then driven Bülow’s Légion Britannique back from the high-ground immediately north of Warburg.  I’ve therefore placed them roughly where they would have been, having successfully driven off Bülow.  When the crisis emerged on the left flank, Castries immediately marched his corps over to the left flank to assist there.

7.  Similarly, there is little information as to the exact deployment of the Chasseurs de Fischer.  All I know is that they were occupying Warburg, but also assisted Castries in driving back Bülow during the early hours.  Following that action, they fell back to defend Warburg, but were eventually driven out later in the day by the resurgent Bülow.  The location of the mounted Chasseur squadrons is purely speculative and they may not have been present.

8.  Although Travers is not mentioned as commander of the Reserve (Rouergue) Brigade, he is mentioned as leading the brigade in a counter-attack against the Allied infantry, so I list him here as commander of the Reserve.

9.  Some sources place the two French dragoon regiments on the right flank with Castries’ command, engaging the Légion Britannique alongside the massed grenadier and chasseur companies and the Chasseurs de Fischer.  The French player may therefore place the two dragoon regiments, under d’Auvet’s command, within Castries’ or Fischer’s deployment area.  In which case, transfer the Royal-Piémont Cavalry Brigade from d’Auvet to Lützelburg’s command and re-calculate the divisional breakpoints.

10.  The German mercenary Johann Christian Fischer is sometimes referred to in the French form, ‘Jean Chrétien Fischer’ or ‘de Fischer’.  I’m not certain if he was ever raised to the nobility and therefore entitled to include the ‘de’ in his name.

11.  The Kronoskaf account of the battle refers to du Muy’s corps as the ‘Rearguard’ of the army.  I’m not sure I understand the logic of this, as they were definitely at the point of the French advance, having just established a bridgehead over the Diemel, with Broglie’s main army marching to reinforce them.

French Formation Breakpoints

Division                FMR      ⅓      ½      ¾

Fischer                        14          5        7        11
Castries                      18          6        9       14
Maupeou                   40         14      20      30
Lützelburg                 15          5        8        12
D’Auvet                      13          5        7        10
Travers                       18          6        9       14
D’Amenzaga              39         13      20      30
Ségur                          42         14       21      31

Army                    FMR      ¼      ⅓       ½

French Army           200       50      67      100

Terrain Notes

The battlefield terrain is for the most part, as defined in the terrain chart on Page 2 of the Tricorn Quick-Reference Sheets.  Here are some scenario-specific terrain definitions:

River Diemel – The River Diemel is impassable to all troop types.

Streams – Are passable to all troop-types, as per the standard rules.  A defender gains a +1 defensive modifier against any unit that crossed a stream during its charge (not cumulative with other terrain modifiers)

Farms, Mills & Watch-Tower – These are merely decoration on the table and do not affect play.

Gardens & Allotments – The town of Warburg is surrounded by a belt of gardens, allotments, orchards and smallholdings (marked on the map by green cross-hatching).  Class this area as ‘Orchards’ as per the standard rules.  The defender gains a +1 defensive modifier (not cumulative with other terrain modifiers).

Hills – The defender will gain a +1 defensive modifier during combat (not cumulative with other terrain modifiers).

The Hein-Berg – The top contour of the Hein-Berg is very steep.  For movement, class all units crossing the top contour-line the same as crossing a stream.  Instead of the usual +1 for defending a hill, any unit defending the top contour of the Hein-Berg will gain a +2 defensive modifier.

Warburg – The crumbling mediaeval walls of Warburg give a defender some advantage, though the walls have been breached in many areas by centuries of building-work, creating doors, windows and gateways and other points of entry for infantry.  Divide the town up into Built-Up Sectors (BUS), each of which may only be defended by a single battalion or pair of skirmisher stands.  I suggest 4x BUS for the southern part of the town and 5x BUS for the northern part of the town.  Where an attacked has to cross the outer wall, the defender gains a +2 defensive modifier.  If fighting within the town, the defender gains only a +1 defensive modifier.  Cavalry and Artillery may only pass through the town in column/limbered formation and only via the main gates; where a road meets the town wall (N.B. there is only one connecting gate between the northern and southern halves of the town).  Note that one historical map, in the Royal Collections Trust, shows Warburg as surrounded by modern bastioned fortifications.  This was definitely not the case.

Villages – Ossendorf comprises three BUS (only one if using the compressed version of the map), while Menne comprises one BUS.  These are not prepared for defence and only give the defender a +1 defensive bonus.

Woodland – Some maps show some small areas of woodland along the Diemel and around the fringes of the battlefield, but these didn’t play any significant part of the battle.  One map shows a wooded area (of approx 12 inches square in map-scale) directly in front of the French left wing (i.e. the La Couronne and d’Aumont Regiments), but this is the same map that shows the bastions and ravelins around Warburg, so I wouldn’t put too much faith in its accuracy.

That’s it for now!  I’m looking forward to playing this one.  As an aside, I’ve just begun a transatlantic Play-By-Mail Franco-Prussian War campaign with some very fine gentlemen.  Despite knowing absolutely nothing about the war, I’ve been placed in charge of the Prussian 2nd Army (i.e. the main Prussian striking-force).  We’re doomed…  Anyway, we’ve just submitted out first orders for the invasion of France, so I can’t wait to see how it turns out.  I will post the results here, once it becomes non-operationally-sensitive to do so (the French have their spies, I’m sure).

On To Paris! 🙂

Posted in Eighteenth Century, Scenarios, Seven Years War & War of Austrian Succession, Tricorn (18th Century Shako Rules), Tricorn Scenarios | 12 Comments

‘Hannover Siegt, Der Franzmann Liegt’ (Part 8: Hanoverian Cavalry)

Having shocked the surviving readers of this blog last week by publicly playing with Gareth’s nobori and having caused palpitations by making people read Japanese names, I thought I’d better post the blog equivalent of Mogadon to calm everyone down.  So here are some SYW Hanoverian cavalry regiments.   The figures are all 18mm British Dragoons by Eureka Miniatures and the standards are by Maverick Models.

These are particularly bland; all with white coats and most don’t even have lapels… I can sense some of you starting to snore already, so pull up a pillow…

Above:  Dragoon Regiment ‘Breidenbach’ was one of four Hanoverian dragoon regiments.  It actually started the Seven Years War with the title ‘Heimburg’ for its inhaber (i.e. Colonel-Proprietor, alternatively Chef) Friedrich von Heimburg.  However, by the time of the regiment’s first engagement at the Battle of Hastenbeck on 26th July 1757, the title had passed to Johann Christian von Breidenbach, so I’ll therefore refer to them as the ‘Breidenbach’ Dragoons below.  However, Breidenbach died in September 1759 and regiment was then known as ‘Reden’ for Ernst Friedrich von Reden.  Following Reden’s death in action at Grunberg in March 1761, the title transferred to Georg von Walthausen.

Following the Seven Years War the regiment was given the regimental number 6, being the 6th cavalry regiment in order of seniority (the eight small regiments of horse were paired up to become regiments 1 to 4 and the dragoon regiments were numbered 5 to 8).  As with other nations’ armies, Hanoverian regiments in the Seven Years War are sometimes referred to in histories by their anachronistic post-war regimental numbers, as it makes it easier to keep track of regiments with constantly-changing titles.

Above:  Dragoon Regiment ‘Breidenbach’.  As in the Hessian and French armies, Hanoverian dragoon regiments were roughly double the strength of the line cavalry regiments, having four squadrons instead of two.  Each squadron had two companies, each of 87 men.  However, as an added complication, eight men from each company would then be detached to the Horse Grenadier Company, which had its own permanent staff of five men (1 lieutenant, 2 NCOs and 2 drummers), so in the field, the regiment would have nine companies, for a total of 712 men at full strength.

Aside from the red-coated Garde du Corps and the Grenadiers à Cheval, all Hanoverian line regiments of dragoons and horse wore white coats.  The dragoon regiments were distinguished by the fact that they had lapels on the breast, an aiguillette on the right shoulder and buttonhole lace on lapels and cuffs.  They also had the aforementioned Horse Grenadier Company standing on the right flank, wearing grenadier mitre caps.

Above:  Dragoon Regiment ‘Breidenbach’.  The regiment’s coats had light blue lapels, cuffs, aiguillette and tail-turnbacks, with white metal buttons and white shoulder-strap and buttonhole lace.  Neck-stocks were red and the aiguillette had red tips to the cords.  Small-clothes, belts, gauntlets and cartridge-pouches were light buff, with light blue lace edging to the waistcoat.  Hats had white lace, black cockades and were often adorned with a sprig of oakleaves or other greenery.  Scabbards were black with iron fittings and swords had iron hilts.

Officers had silver lace and yellow sashes, worn ‘British-style’ over the shoulder, though there is some evidence to suggest that they may have worn them over the right shoulder, like British infantry officers.  A British infantry officer figure might therefore be better than the dragoon officer used here.

As for musicians, I made a mistake here and included a trumpeter.  Dragoon regiments only had drummers and oboists!  They wore heavily-laced livery-coats in reversed colours and headgear was the same as the rest of the company (mitre caps for the Horse Grenadiers and hats for the rest).  Eureka Miniatures don’t do a British dragoon drummer (or oboist) in hat (they have mitre caps), but their French dragoon musician figures would be perfect for the job, so I’ll use those next time.

Above:  Dragoon Regiment ‘Breidenbach’.  The regiment’s Horse Grenadiers wore a mitre cap with a white bag with light blue piping and a red-over-light blue pompom.  The front-piece and headband were light blue.  The front-piece was decorated with the crowned Badge of Hanover, flanked by white foliage.  Below that was a red false-flap, decorated with a white or silver grenade badge.  There was another grenade badge worn centrally on the rear of the headband.

Horse furniture was light blue, edged with white lace, shot through with narrow red stripes.  I’ve simplified this to a single red stripe (as did the artist who painted the picture shown above).  The holster-caps and rear corners of the shabraque were further decorated with a wreathed and crowned Badge of Hanover, though I haven’t painted these (as mentioned before, I tend not to paint too much shabraque decoration, as it obscures the ground colour of the shabraque).  Cloaks were white and when not worn, were rolled at the rear of the saddle, with the facing-coloured lining showing outermost.

Hanoverian dragoon standards were square, like those of the regiments of horse.  The 1st Squadron carried the white Leibstandarte, while the other squadrons each carried a blue Eskadronstandarte.  These were fringed in gold and carried a different design for each squadron.  All depictions of the Eskadronstandarten show a darker, deeper blue than the facing colour, but this may be just a matter of interpretation and it may have been the same colour.

A note about horses; Hanoverian dragoons may well have ridden darker breeds, as shown in the picture above.  It is certainly recorded that they would put the larger, darker horses in the front rank.  However, given the similarity of their uniforms with those of the regiments of heavy horse, I decided to use the ‘Prussian approach’ and mount the dragoons on browns and chestnuts, keeping the darker colours for the heavy horse.

Above:  The ‘Dachenhausen’ Regiment of Horse (left) and ‘Gilten’ Regiment of Horse (right).

The ‘Dachenhausen’ Horse were named for their inhaber Carl Gustav von Dachenhausen.  However, in 1758 the title changed to ‘Bremer’ for their new inhaber, Christian Friedrich Bremer.  In 1761 the regiment became known as ‘Alt-Bremer’, to set it apart from the newly-titled ‘Jung-Bremer’ Regiment.  In the post-war numbering scheme, the ‘Alt-Bremer’ Regiment was given the designation 2A (being one half of the new 2nd Cavalry Regiment).

A Trooper of the ‘Pöllnitz’ Regiment of Horse, circa 1749 by David Morier.

The ‘Gilten’ Horse were actually titled ‘Pöllnitz’ at the start of the Seven Years War, but in 1757 changed to ‘Gilten’ (for Wilhelm August von Gilten’) before their first engagement at the Battle of Hastenbeck.  The regiment then went through multiple changes of inhaber and title, becoming ‘Breidenbach’ for Georg Carl von Breidenbach in 1758, ‘Veltheim’ for Adrian Dietrich von Veltheim in 1758 and then remaining ‘Veltheim’ in 1761 for Carl August von Veltheim.  In the post-war numbering scheme it was given the designation 4B (being one half of the new 4th Cavalry Regiment).

Hanoverian regiments of horse were small units, consisting of only two squadrons, each of three companies, for a total of 358 men per regiment at full strength.  I therefore pair them up to make a viable unit for Tricorn, in the same manner as my British and Hessian cavalry.  Oddly enough, this is exactly what the Hanoverian Army did immediately following the Seven Years War; combine each small unit into a viable unit of four squadrons.

Above:  The ‘Dachenhausen’ Regiment of Horse (left) and ‘Gilten’ Regiment of Horse (right).  All Hanoverian regiments of horse wore white coats without lapels or aiguillette.  I’ve therefore used yet more British dragoon figures by Eureka Miniatures and have filed off the aiguillettes.  The coat had three pairs of buttons down each side of the breast and three buttons on each cuff.  The cuffs and tail-turnbacks were in the regimental facing colour.  Shoulder-straps were white.  Small-clothes were buff, with the waistcoat being edged in the facing colour.  Hats were edged in the button colour and had a black cockade, being often adorned with a sprig of oakleaves or other greenery.  Horse furniture was in the facing colour and was edged and decorated with often quite elaborate embroidered designs.  Cloaks were white, lined in the facing colour and rolled behind the saddle with the facing colour outermost.  Belts were buff, though should be flat at the front (I’ve mistakenly painted on the front belt-buckles modelled on the British dragoon figures).

The ‘Dachenhausen’ Horse had apple green as its facing colour and had white metal buttons and black neck-stocks.  The horse furniture was decorated with the crowned Badge of Hanover and was edged with a complicated pattern of red, blue, yellow and white leaves.

The ‘Gilten’ Horse had medium blue as its facing colour and also had white metal buttons and black neck-stocks.  The horse furniture was decorated with crowned ‘GR’ cyphers and was edged in wide yellow lace, edged red and superimposed with a wide, wavy lace band of lace in a complex pattern.

Above:  The ‘Gilten’ Regiment of Horse (left) and ‘Dachenhausen’ Regiment of Horse (right).  Officers of horse had metallic lace edging to cuffs, collar, hat and horse furniture, as well as a silver gorget worn at the throat and a yellow sash worn over the shoulder.

Regimental musicians consisted of trumpeters and a single kettle-drummer.  These all wore a livery-coat in the regimental facing colour, heavily decorated with lace.  Headgear was a cocked hat.

Standards were square, as for the dragoons.  The Leibstandarte was carried by each regiment’s 1st Squadron and was white for both regiments, fringed and embroidered in silver.  The 2nd Squadron in each regiment carried an Eskadronstandarte (called a Regimentstandarte in some sources) in the facing colour, again fringed and embroidered with silver.  Each side of each standard had a different motif, as detailed on the Kronoskaf site.  As these are such small regiments, I’ve only shown the Eskadronstandarte for each regiment.

Above:  The ‘Zepelin’ Regiment of Horse (left) and the ‘Reden’ Regiment of Horse (right).

The ‘Zepelin’ Horse started the Seven Years War with Johann Friedrich von Zepelin as inhaber.  In 1757 the regimental title changed to ‘Skölln’ with the accession of Gerlach Friedrich von Skölln, though it isn’t clear if this took place before or after the Battle of Hastenbeck.  Note that in some sources the regiment is listed as ‘Scholien’, which seems to be a spelling-mistake or mis-transcription.  In any case, Skölln died in April 1758 and the title became ‘Heise’ when the regiment passed to Otto Wilhelm von Heise.  The title changed again in 1761 to ‘Estorff’ for Emmerich Otto August von Estorff.  In the post-war numbering system the regiment was given the designation of 1B (being half of the new 1st Cavalry Regiment).

The ‘Reden’ Horse actually started the war as the ‘Bothe’ Horse (for Johann Arnold Bothe), but by the time of the Battle of Hastenbeck in 1757 had been re-titled ‘Reden’ for their new inhaber, Ernst Friedrich von Reden.  After the Battle of Minden in 1759, the regiment was re-titled ‘Walthausen’ for Georg von Walthausen and changed title a final time in 1761 to ‘Behr’ or ‘Alt-Behr’ for Johann Friedrich von Behr.  In the post-war numbering system, the regiment was given the designation 4A (being half of the new 4th Cavalry Regiment).

Above:  The ‘Zepelin’ Regiment of Horse (left) and the ‘Reden’ Regiment of Horse (right).

The ‘Zepelin’ Horse started the war with orange as its facing colour and yellow as its ‘metal’ colour.  Neck-stocks were red and hat-lace was yellow.  Horse furniture was orange, decorated with the crowned Badge of Hanover and edged with a double band of lace in a complex patter of green, yellow and orange (for simplicity’s sake, I’ve just used green).  However, in 1760 the colourings changed dramatically, with cuffs and neck-stocks becoming black and the tail-turnbacks becoming white.  The horse-furniture also became white and was now edged in a double band of plain yellow lace (with badges as before).  The cloak-roll changed to black.

The ‘Reden’ Horse had dark blue facings and yellow ‘metal’.  Neck-stocks were black and hat-lace was yellow.  Horse furniture was also dark blue, being decorated with the crowned Badge of Hanover and edged in a strip of yellow & white lace, with an interior edge of green, white and crimson leaves.

Above:  The ‘Reden’ Regiment of Horse (left) and the ‘Zepelin’ Regiment of Horse (right) again dressed their musicians in livery-coats matching the facing colour and heavily decorated with lace.

The ‘Reden’ Horse followed the usual pattern of a Leibstandarte in white and Eskadronstanrate matching the facing colour, both fringed with the button colour (gold).  However, the ‘Zepelin’ Horse differed somewhat in that its white Leibstandarte was fringed with silver, while the Eskadronstandarte was yellow, fringed in gold.  Note that again, I’ve given both these units an Eskadronstandarte.

Anyway, that’s enough from me for now.  I’ve just got back from enduring the execrable Napoleon film, so now need a stiff drink and a lie down…


Just. Don’t.

More anon…

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

‘Getting Your Nobori Out In Public’: a 6mm Samurai Game

It was something a bit different for me last week, as I went down to W.A.S.P. and had a 6mm Samurai game with my old mate Gareth.  I’ve been admiring his astonishing 6mm Samurai collection for the last few years and his Tenka-Fubu blog is definitely worth a visit if you’re even remotely interested in Samurai warfare, or if not, just go for the eye-candy (a sample of which is shown above).

Sometime around 1994-1998ish, Gareth and I (along with our mates Jason and Doug) did a lot of 15mm Samurai gaming and put on a series of large demo games at shows such as Colours, Partizan, Warfare, Crusade, Warcon, Marston-Magna and WMMMS.  They even appeared in the pages of Wargames Illustrated and Miniature Wargames, thanks mainly to Gareth’s astonishing castle models (that were eventually sold to a bloke from Dublin, thus saving me the job of driving the terrain home from Colours ’98!).

Doug, Gareth and me at Marston-Magna ’96 with Gareth’s first castle model. The second castle was MUCH better…

To be honest, I’ve no idea how we found the time, as we were also doing a lot of large 15mm Napoleonic and Seven Years War demo games at around the same time.  I’m sure that there must have been a tear in the space-time continuum sometime around 1994 that allowed us the time and money to fit all this in…  Anyway, I’ve still got my old 15mm Samurai collection here (the Uesugi clan), along with Jase’s collection (Takeda clan); around 1,000 figures all-told, which I must dig out for a photo-shoot one day.

Anyway, back to last week’s 6mm game:  The game was played with Gareth’s own Tenka-Fubu: Warfare in the Age of Nobunaga rules (follow the link to his downloads page), which are an adaptation of For King & Parliament by Simon Miller (itself an adaptation of To The Strongest!).  These are designed for large-scale battles and I found them to be quick and easy to learn and play.  Unlike the modified version of DBR we used in the 1990s (and every other set of rules used to play Samurai warfare), Tenka-Fubu doesn’t break units down by weapon or troop-type.  Instead, each unit represents an entire combined-arms Sonae (‘brigade’ or ‘regiment’ being the nearest western equivalent).

Sonae have two ratings, first indicating their ‘Command’ ability (organisation, communications, training and drill) and second their ‘Military’ ability (skill at arms, small-unit tactics, weapons, armour and experience).  These factors range from 1 (Good) to 3 (Poor).  Some lucky Sonae will also include guns, which provide defending units thus equipped with an initial strike against an attacker.  Several Sonae are then grouped into a Shū under the command of a Bushō.  Several Shū then make up the army, commanded by the Taishō.  For a fuller explanation of the rules, go to Gareth’s download page, though note that a copy or knowledge of For King & Parliament will also be required.

Above:  A small Shū of only two Sonae, belonging to Oda Nobunaga’s army.  This is the Akechi clan, commanded by Akechi Mitsuhide (identified by the ‘F’ marker on the Sonae bases).  The clan’s two Sonae are average across the board, with both Sonae having a factor of 2 for both Command and Military ability.  The right-hand Sonae (to which Akechi Mitsuhide has attached himself) also has a dot above its Command factor, indicating the inclusion of guns.

Anyway, before we go onto the battle report, here’s some of Gareth’s scenery.  I should add that Tenka-Fubu is a square grid-based game, so each terrain-piece and Sonae neatly fits one square on the board.  The grid itself is marked by very subtle dots painted on the cloth, marking the corners of the grid-squares:

Above:  Peasants work in the paddy-fields.

Above:  In the nearby village, more peasants hang out the washing and do a spot of fishing.

Above:  Other peasants take a stroll with the kids.

Above:  Two peasants play Go in the shade of a pine tree, while a third looks on, probably offering ‘helpful tactical advice’.

Above:  I thought I’d add this coin to show the scale of Gareth’s incredible modelling and painting.  His figures are mostly by Baccus Miniatures, with a few 3D-printed models mixed in.  The scenery is all scratch-built.  For the purposes of our game, the scenic items (aside from woods and hills) were purely for decoration and were simply moved aside as troops moved through.  The underlying terrain cloth is a golden-brown ‘teddy-bear fur’ rug, painted with large patches of green.  This harks back to our old demo games, which used the same colour scheme in an attempt to match those wonderful Japanese folding screens (such as the famous Ōsaka Screen), which use gold leaf as the ground-colour, with large patches of green grass.

Above:  The opening positions, showing the army of Oda Nobunaga on the left and the army of Mōri Terumoto on the right.  The Mōri army is slightly stronger, but the Oda have the qualitative edge.  Here’s Gareth’s outline of the scenario, together with a rough order of battle showing the ID letter for each Shū, the clan to which they belong and the name of the Bushō.  Each Shū has 2-4 Sonae.  Most Shū have one Sonae equipped with guns.  I must add that this period is not my my area of expertise, so any errors below are entirely Gareth’s… 😉

Harima 1574

The basic and rather tenuous, premise is a ‘what-if’ scenario where Oda Nobunaga attacks the Mōri in 1574 after defeating the Azai-Asakura.  The battle happens somewhere in Harima province.

Oda Army (Gareth):

ID Letter – ‘Clan’ – Bushō
A – Oda – Oda Nobunaga (Taishō)
B – Oda – Sassa Narimasa
C – Oda – Oda Nobutada
D – Shibata – Shibata Katsuie
E – Hashiba – Hashiba Hideyoshi
F – Akechi – Akechi Mitsuhide
G – Maeda-  Maeda Toshiie

undefinedMōri Army (Me):  

ID Letter – ‘Clan’ – Bushō
A – Mōri – Mōri Terumoto (Taishō)
B – Mōri – Fukubara Sadatoshi
C – Kobayakawa – Kobayakawa Takakage
D – Kikkawa – Kikkawa Motoharu
E – Minor clans – Awaya Motonobu
F – Harima clans – Bessho Nagaharu
G – Murakami et al – Murakami Motoyoshi

Above:  Mōri Terumoto’s headquarters is situated on top of a hill near the right flank.  Terumoto gains a bonus when transmitting orders provided he remains within his headquarters, but will lost that bonus if he decides to mount up and move.

Above: To the rear of Mōri Terumoto’s headquarters are his household troops (A), consisting of three high-quality Sonae.  On the forward slope is the Shū of Fukubara Sadatoshi (B) with two Sonae.  On the right flank stands the large Shū of minor clan contingents (E), consisting of four Sonae under the command of Awaya Motonobu.

Above:  In the centre of the Mōri line is the Shū of the Kikkawa clan (D), resplendent in their black-and-white-striped sashimono.  This formation consists of three Sonae, commanded by Kikkawa Motoharu.

On the left of the Mōri first line and nearest the camera are the distinctive red sashimono and nobori banners of the Kobayakawa clan (C).  This Shū consists of four Sonae, commanded by Kobayakawa Takakage.

The Kikkawa and Kobayakawa clans are among the more powerful Mōri  contingents, consisting mostly of Average (as opoosed to Poor) troops and a slightly higher complement of guns.

Above:  The Mōri left wing is refused, lurking in the dead ground behind a hill.  This wing comprises mostly Poor troops and is therefore kept as far away from the enemy as possible!  Behind the Kobayaka clan are the Murakami and their retainers (G).  The Sonae of Murakami household troops (with the brown sashimono and nobori) comprises average troops, but the two retainer Sonae on their right are universally poor.

On the left flank and nearest the camera is a Shū made up from the local Harima clans (F), consisting of three Sonae, commanded by Bessho Nagaharu.  These are all Poor troops.  The fences indicate that they are defending their starting positions, for which they have a combat bonus.  This bonus will be lost if they move from their starting position.

Above:  Gareth’s overall view of the Mōri army.

Above:  Oda Nobunaga has also positioned his headquarters on a hilltop, to get a good view of the action.  In front of him stand the three Sonae of his household troops (A); two Sonae with black sashimono and nobori banners, plus one Sonae (on the right) with yellow.  On the left flank stands a Shū of four Oda household Sonae (B), under the command of Sassa Narimasa.

Above:  To the right of Oda’s headquarters is a third Shū of Oda household troops (C), comprising three Sonae, commanded by Oda Nobutada.

Above:  To the right of the Oda household is the Shū of the Shibata clan (D) commanded by Shibata Katsuie, with two Sonae carrying red sashimono and white nobori.

To their right are the blue banners of the Akechi clan (F), commanded by Akechi Mitsuhide.  This Shū also has only two Sonae.

Above:  In front of the Akechi clan is the Shū of the Maeda clan (G), carrying white banners.  This clan again has two Sonae, led by Maeda Toshiie.  Toshiie himself is easily identifiable on the battlefield thanks to his famous gold catfish-tail helmet and his personal banner depicting ‘Shoki the Demon-Queller’.

Lastly, on the Oda right flank and nearest the camera are another two Sonae belonging to the Hashiba clan (E), led by Hashiba Hideyoshi and including some exceptional troops.

Above:  Gareth’s overall view of the Oda army.

Above:  With a wave of his tessen, Mōri Terumoto orders his right wing (the small Shū of Mōri  troops under Fukubara Sadatoshi and the large, rag-tag Shū of Awaya Motonobu to advance rapidly, to take up more advantageous defensive positions on the high ground to their front.  The respective Būsho are marked with a circular base of pack-mules, indicating that they are under March orders.

Above:  The rest of the Mōri army remains stationary in their original positions under Defend orders (as indicated by the fence markers).  Terumoto-sama has decided to refuse his left flank and anchor it on dense woodland, but now starts to regret his decision, as the hill forward of the left flak might have been more defensive ground.

Above:  Oda Nobunaga meanwhile, knowing the quality of his troops, decides on a much more aggressive approach.  His entire right wing moves forward in echelon, hoping to destroy the poor-quality troops on the Mōri left flank and then rolling the Mōri army up from there.  The tip of the yari is formed by the excellent Sonae of the Hashiba (red banners) and Maeda clans (white banners).

Above:  Next in the echelon are the Akechi and Shibata clans.  Note the marker with a mounted tsukai-ban (messenger) figure, wearing a voluminous red horo on his back (looking rather like a Ninja Turtle).  This marker indicates a Shū on Attack orders.  A marker with a single nobori banner-bearer indicates a Shū on Regroup orders, but there are none of those on the table yet.

Above:  The Hashiba clan quickly closes to contact and charges the leftmost Sonae of the Harmia clan.  The Harima are not good troops and casualties quickly mount, despite despite their reasonably good position.

Note the marker with a tuft of grass; these indicate ‘hits’ on the Sonae.  Each Sonae can withstand three hits, but will be destroyed on the fourth hit.  Hits can be recovered if the Shū as a whole adopts Regroup orders or if the Bushō gives a temporary Regroup order to an individual Sonae.

I don’t know if Gareth was invoking Matsuo Bashō when he had the idea of using grass tufts to represent casualties, but it makes me think of Bashō’s famous haiku;

Natsukusa ya
Tsuwamono domo ga
Yume no ato

“Summer grasses, all that remains of stalwart warrior’s dreams” (there are other translations, but I like that one best).

Above:  Despite Bessho Nagaharu’s best efforts, his leftmost Sonae quickly collects a critical number of grass-tufts, but inflicts only one in return!

Above:  The view across the battlefield from the endangered Mōri left flank.

Above:  The view from the opposite flank.  In the foreground, Awaya Motonubu’s mixed Shū has occupied the hilltop and adopted Defend orders in the nick of time as in front of them, Sassa Narimasa’s Shū is moving to attack the hill.

Above:  Back on the Mōri left flank, the Harima clans are collapsing in the face of the ferocious Hashiba attack!  Bessho Nagaharu has thus far managed to escape death or capture, but now he makes his last stand with his household Sonae.

Above:  The ferocity of Hashiba Hideyoshi’s attack has been so astonishing and rapid that Murakami Motoyoshi has not managed to organise a counter-attack to save his neighbour!

However, in the distance, Mōri Terumoto has spotted an opportunity.  While the Oda left wing has charged rapidly forward to get stuck into the Mōri left wing, a large gap has opened up in the Oda centre, covered by only the two Sonae of the Shibata clan (red sashimono and white nobori).  With another casual wave of his tessen, the Taishō orders Kikkawa Motoharu’s powerful clan (with black-and-white-striped sashimono) forward to destroy the Shibata and cut the head off the snake!

Above:  The Akechi (light blue) charge home on the Kobayakawa (red)!  However, Oda plans quickly unravel as both Akechi Sonae suffer heavy casualties while assaulting a single Kobayakawa Sonae.

Above:  Over on the Mōri left flank, Bessho Nagaharu is still holding out with the last remnants of the local Harima clans.  However, the leading Maeda Sonae has charged home on the left-flanking Murakami Sonae, inflicting heavy casualties (at some expense to the Maeda).  The second Maeda Sonae meanwhile, wheels to outflank the Kobayakawa, who are already hard-pressed by the Akechi! [edited to de-gibbish]

With his left flank going to nezumi no tawagoto, Mōri Terumoto starts composing his death-haiku

Above:  Over on the right flank however, things are going rather better.  Awaya Motonobu’s Shū is still managing to hold his hilltop against Sassa Narimasa’s Oda troops, while on his left Fukubara Sadatoshi has charged into the fight with his Shū of Mōri household troops, inflicting significant damage on the right-hand Oda Sonae.  All they have to do is hold their ground…

Above:  In the centre, the black-and-white striped banners of the Kikkawa clan charge through the paddy-fields to strike home on the Shibata!  However, Shibata Katsuie proves to be a wily foe and wheels one of his Sonae to outflank the Kikkawa assault.  In turn, Kobayakawa Takakage orders his clan to counter-attack and succeeds in outflanking the outflanking Shibata Sonae!  However, the Kobayaka are now being outflanked by the Maeda…

Got all that…?

Above:  Back on the left flank, Bessho Nagaharu’s heroic resistance finally ends as he goes down fighting, having inflicted heavy losses on the Hashiba in sweet revenge.  The brown-bannered Murakami Sonae has also gone down fighting, beset on two sides by Hashiba and Maeda Sonae.  However, Murakami Motoyoshi is starting to get his act together and has managed to turn one of his Sonae to face the threat on the flank.

Above:  Over on the opposite flank, Awaya Motonobu’s mixed bag of minor clans is starting to be pushed off his hill!

Above:  At last, the Mōri army has some success as the Shibata clan is destroyed by the combined efforts of the Kikkawa and Kobayakawa!  However, One of the red-bannered Kobayakawa Sonae has been destroyed by the combined efforts of the Maeda and Akechi clans, while the hoped-for Mōri breakthrough in the centre has now been blocked by the intervention of a fresh Shū of Oda household troops led by Oda Nobunaga’s son and heir, Oda Nobutada.

Above:  “Amaterasu on a jitensha!  Do I have to do everything myself?!”  Alarmed by the deteriorating situation on the left, Mōri Terumoto calls for his horse and leads his personal household troops to stabilise the situation!

“And don’t forget to roll up the wind-breaker! “

Above:  Determined to push Awaya Motonobu off the hill, Sassa Narimasa presses home his attack.  However, Sassa Narimasa’s right-flanking Sonae is destroyed by Fukubara Sadatoshi… The battle for the hill could still go either way.

Above:  Suddenly, the gods smile on the Mōri!  By some miracle, the Murakami, hard-pressed on the left flank, manage to repulse yet another Hashiba attack, breaking one of the two Hashiba Sonae!  Shocked by the repulse, the rest of the Hasiba clan break and run, closely followed by one of the two Maeda Sonae!  The astonished Murakami immediately advance, hoping to crush Maeda Toshiie in concert with the Kobayakawa and roll up the Oda right flank.

Perhaps the Tasihō‘s reserves aren’t required after all?

Above:  However, Oda Nobutada soon pisses on the Mōri osumi…  The injection of a third Kikkawa Sonae into the battle at the village makes little difference as the other two Sonae are destroyed.  The lead Kobayakawa Sonae is similarly destroyed by the Akechi and yet another Kobayakawa Sonae flees the field in response to the unfolding disaster!

A huge, four-Sonae gap has suddenly appeared in the centre of the Mōri army… Thankfully, Mōri Terumoto is perfectly placed to plug the gap with three elite Sonae!

Above:  As the Taishō leads the charge against Oda Nobutada, the Murakami advance to roll up the Oda right flank.  However, Maeda Toshiie escapes the trap, ‘advancing to the rear’ with his remaining Sonae to regroup.  The Akechi meanwhile, find themselves in trouble, having suffered heavy losses and now beset by the remnants of the Murakami and Kobayakawa clans, as well as fresh Mōri household troops!  In the distance, Oda Nobunaga has also mounted up and is riding to join the battle…

Tragically, that was where we had to leave it!  The battle was on a knife-edge and the loss of one Sonae to either side would have secured (a rather Pyrrhic) victory!

My sincere thanks again to Gareth for a superb game and a wonderful introduction to his magnificent collection and to Tenka-Fubu rules.

There’s another AAR with Gareth to follow (Mollwitz 1741) and yet more SYW.  Sadly we had to cancel our Warburg game due to illness, but we’ve re-booked that one as our Christmas game (which gives me time to paint more scenario-appropriate units). 🙂

Posted in 6mm Figures, Games, Samurai, Sengoku-Jidai, Tenka-Fubu Rules | 24 Comments