Showing posts with label french army. Show all posts
Showing posts with label french army. Show all posts

Wednesday, 21 October 2020

The Battle of Ooderen :The Spanish Netherlands, June 31st 1703


The details of this clash of arms is a bit sparse in English sources, so this is my interpretation of the events leading up to this battle. Some of the details could be wrong.

 This battle was one of many in what is known as The Malburian Wars or The War of the Spanish Succession. The British and Dutch were fighting the French. Louis the 14th had sent his army North, to invade the Spanish Netherlands, which roughly equates to the country of Belgium in present times.

The Dutch government had sent their army South  into the Netherlands to try and forestall the French army in its advance. The British General, The Duke of Marlborough had warned General Obdam the Dutch General not to advance to far.

Obdam disregarded the Dukes advise wanting to show that the Dutch did not need the British to give them instructions. At this time the country of Holland was known as The United Provinces.

The French C-in-C, the Duc De Boufflers was no fool and as the Dutch army advanced saw an opportunity to surround it. At Eckeren this manoeuvre came about.

Realising what was happening, Obdam with his army tried to fight his way out of the encirclement. First, he directed an attack against Eckeren  but the French forced the Dutch to retreat. Next, he directed an attack against Hoevenen, but this was not pushed home.

Hoevenen was where the majority of the French Cavalry was stationed. The area consisted of open country. The Dutch Generals realised that their mainly infantry army would be cut to pieces if caught in open country in marching column.

The Dutch Army was camped in enclosed territory ideal for defense but they were surrounded on three sides with their backs to the Scheldt river ( pro: Skeld ).

The Dutch Commander knew there was only one thing he could do; he deserted!!.

Disguising himself as a French Officer, Obdam went South, leaving his Officers and the army in a dire situation. Luckily for the Dutch troops, the second in command, General Slangenburg was made of sterner stuff,.

He realised that the only way out was through Ooderen. When the Scheldt river was at low ebb, the polder (a very large drainage gully ) near the village would be passable.

Even at low tide the drainage ditch and the dike further east would be an obstacle for cavalry so would provide some defence should the Duc De Merode become aware of the Dutch manouvres.

Having decided on a plan General Slangenburg and his fellow General Friesham got the army moving.

The Army of The United Provinces ( Holland)

8,500 foot ( inc; Generals and Artillery) = 8.5 points x  4 = 34 points.

1,500 Horse= 1.5 x 4= 6 points.

1 General ( Slangenburg) @ 2points.

1 General (Friesham) @ 1 point.

3 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 6 points.

3 stands of Light artillery @ 1 point = 3points.

2 stands of Grenadier infantry @ 4 points =8 points.

10 stands of Line Infantry @ 2 points = 20 points.


The French "Division" at Ooderen.

9,500 Foot = 9.5 x 4 = 38 points ( inc Generals and Artillery ).

2000 Horse = 2 points x 4 = 8 points.

1 General ( the Duc De Villaroi ) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Heavy Field Guns @ 2points = 4 points.

8 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 24 points.

1 stand of Dismounted Dragoons @ 1 point.

2 Stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

4 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.

Here is a map of the battle;



The battlefield;


Notes;

The Dutch get the Initiative Point on every  Game-Turn. This is for their bravery born out of desperation and for the French not expecting the Dutch to attack!.

Any stands being forced into the water West of the village bridge will be lost. This was the flood plain of the Scheldt so very deep and soft mud. The left side of the board from the Dutch base edge is river so stands will be lost if they are forced to retire off that side.

Any Dutch stands retiring over the dike will be lost ( they would eventually be caught by the French troops to the East).

The polder East of the Bridge is treated as a river that under the rules can be crossed with penalties.

The winner of the battle after 8 Game-Turns will be the side with the least number of stands lost and/or the Dutch have stands on the bridge at the village. The Dutch have only one way to go. That is North.

The other parts of The French Army didn't take part in the battle. I'm surmising that either Generals Boufflers and Merode assumed that General Villeroi could defeat the Dutch ,or, the acoustics of the area muffled the sound of the battle.

General De Bedmar,s Spanish " Division" was at Wilmarsdonk to the South, but he did not move. I'm assuming that he also thought that Generals Villaroi and Merode would be able to stop the Dutch escaping.

For completeness, here is my interpretation of the remainder of the Franco/ Spanish Army;

The French "Division" at Hoevenen

6,500 horse = 6.5 points x 4 = 26 points.

1 General ( Merode) @ 1 point.

8 stands of Cavalry @ 3 points = 24 points.

1 stand of Mounted Dragoons @ 1 point.


The French "Division " at Eckeren.

11,000 Foot ( inc: Generals and Artillery)= 11 points x 4 = 44 points.

2,000 Horse = 2 points x 4 = 8 points.

1 General, C-in-C ( Boufflers) @1 point.

1 stand of Heavy Artillery @ 2points.

3 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 3 points.

2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

10 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 30 points.

4 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 8 points.


The Spanish "Division" at Wilmarsdonk.

8,500 Foot ( inc: Artillery and Generals = 8.5 points x 4 = 34 points. 

1,500 Horse = 1.5 x 4 = 6 points.

1 General ( De Bedmar) @ 1 point.

2 stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

7 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 21 points.

4 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 4 points.

3 stands of Cavalry @ 2 points = 6 points.

Credits;

I set this battle up on a 2 foot (60cm) x 2 foot (60cm) board as there seem to be very little manoeuvring space according to one Period map I have seen.

The figures are mostly Miniature Figurines with some from Peter Pig and Essex Miniatures. They represent the middle 18th century rather than the earlier Malburian era.

The buildings are from Total Battle Miniatures. The bridge at the village is scratchbuilt, as are the dike sections. The rivers and roads are thin card.

The bases of the figures are made from picture framing card and the round 40mm mdf  bases are from Minibits














 



Monday, 6 April 2020

The Battle of Friedlingen. Breisgau 14th October 1702.

As the War of the Spanish Succession unfolded, military formations of The Hapsberg Empire moved to cover the crossings of the river Rhine and to threaten Alsace.

In order to break this deadlock the French King sent an Army through Huningue across the Rhine into Breisgau.

South of the river Weisse the country belonged to the Swiss. The French General, De Villars had previously  sought permission from the Cantons to pass through their territory in order to execute a wide flanking march to the North East. Permission was denied.

Although De Villars could see that he had limited space to deploy his Army,  he still led his forces out to do battle. If he was to win, the situation would undermine the Austrian blockade of the Rhine crossings.

The Imperial Austrian Army;

9,000 Infantry = 9 points x 4 = 36 points.

5, 000 Cavalry = 5 points x 4 = 20 points.

C-in-C; Louis William of Baden = 1 point.
General Claude De Mercy = 1 point.

Fort Friedlingen;

1 Heavy artillery stand @ 2 points.
1 stand of Line Infantry @ 3 points.

In the field;

2 stands of Grenadier infantry @ 4 points = 8 points.

7 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 21 points.

4 stands of Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 12 points.

3 stands of Line Dragoons @ 2 points = 6 points.

2 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 2 points.


The French Army;

6,000 Cavalry; 6 points x 4 = 24 points.

11,000 Infantry; 11 points x 4 = 44 points.

C-in-C; Claude Louis Hector De Villars = 1 point.
General Desbordes = 1 point.

Garrison of Huningue;

1 stand of Grenadier Infantry = 4 points.
2 stands of Heavy Artillery @2 points = 4 points.

Field Army;

6 stands of Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 18 points.

2 stands of Line Dragoon Cavalry @ 2 points = 4 points.

11 stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 33 points.

3 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 point = 3 points.

Notes;

●The French Army moves first on the first Game-Turn. All subsequent
Game-turns are diced for.

● The River Canderne can be crossed by infantry and cavalry. The artillery
must cross by the bridge.

● Any French stands forced to enter the River Weisse will be lost.

In the original battle  the French Infantry pushed up Tollingen Hill as the Austrian Army advanced.

De Villars had to intervene when his infantry started to retire under pressure from the Austrians opposite their position.

The Austrian Cavalry put in a half - hearted charge but soon retired.

Fort Friedlingen was also known as Fort De  Etoile or the Sternschanze ( Starsconce). According to an old map I've seen it is portrayed as a rectangular star shape.

I used a rectangular fort- style building. There was a marshy stream running
parallel with the base of the hill West of fort Friedlingen and I have portrayed part of it.
Any unit moving into the marshy ground can only move one square per game-turn.

Here is the map;




Some of the information presented here, I wasn't sure about but the battle seems to work so I I'm  going with this;



Once again, the battle is on a 3 foot x 2 foot board and the figures are a mix of Miniature Figurines and Peter Pig. The table is shown from the Austrian position.
Here's a few more;
















Wednesday, 27 November 2019

The Battle of Luzzera; Italy 1702.

This battle was one of a number of battles between France and Imperial Austria to take control of Italy. The battle took place in Lombardy on the 15th of August. This battle was a tough one with heavy casualties on both sides. At the end of the day, the French were fought to a standstill, with the Austrians to tired to push home their attack. Both sides dug in on the battlefield. A few months later the French Army retired.

The Armies are as follows;

France.
24,500 Infantry. = 24 1/2 points x2 = 49 points.
10,000 Cavalry. = 10 points x2 = 20 points.
Total = 69 points.


1) General Louis Joseph Duc De Vendome C-in-C =1point.
2) General Charles De Lorraine Prince De Commerci =1 point.
3) General Nicholas Catinat =1 point.

2 Stands of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points =8 points.
11 Stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points = 33 points.
5 Stands of Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 15 points.
2 Stands of Light Dragoons @ 2 points = 4 points.
3 Stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 6 points.

Imperial Austria.
17,500 Infantry. = 17 1/2 points. x 2 = 35 points.
7,500 Cavalry. = 7 1/2 points. x 2 = 15 points.
Total 50 points.

A) General Prince Eugene of Savoy C-in-C = 2 points.
B) General Visconti = 1 point.
C) General Vaudemont = 1 point.

1 Stand of Grenadier Infantry @ 4 points. = 4 points.
7 Stands of Line Infantry @ 3 points. = 21 points.
3 Stands of Heavy Artillery @ 2 points = 6 points.
5 Stands of Line Cavalry @ 3 points = 15 points.

Notes.
● Stands can only be moved up onto the Dyke
via the slope at either end.

● Stands moving over the irrigation ditches must stop once the Stand is on them. The stand can be moved normally in the next movement phase.

● A Stand involved in combat whilst positioned in an irrigation ditch, deduct 2 points from their combat die roll.

● The fields do not impede movement or line-of-sight.

● The buildings represent large Farm complexes called "Casines". Stone farmhouses and buildings encompassed by a wall.

● The river Po can only be crossed via the pontoon bridge.

● The Dragoons can dismount.

The Prince De Commerci; This particularly brave Gentlemen was wounded seven times leading cavalry  charges! and expired at the end of the battle!. Therefore;
Each time the French Cavalry under his command move back or are removed,this figure suffers a wound. Should he gain 3 wounds within eight Game-Turns,the figure is removed.

●The battle is fought for 8 Game-Turns.The loser is the army with the most number
of stands lost. If the number of stands lost on both sides is equal, the side with the most
Points in stands looses the battle.

● I fought this battle three times. The first was solo. The second and third with my Wife Joyce and my Stepson Jason. The Austrians won twice and the French once.

This is a map of the battlefield with the positions of the respective armies.



This is the battlefield. I used 15mm 18th century figures. These are mostly Miniature Figurines with some Peter Pig additions.

The square bases are from picture framing card. The round 40mm mdf bases are supplied by Minibits.



The Dyke;
I made this from cardboard in sections. I then covered the sections with texturing
Paste and painting them once the paste had dried.



The fields are Mdf bases sectioned with Cold curing clay. I bought some " wheatfield"
Scenic scatter from War World Scenics. ( www.wwscenics.com).

The mdf bases came from S and A scenics, and Sarrisa Precision.

The mdf river sections came from a pack supplied by Sarrisa Precision. I added the river bank with Green Stuff putty. I then used emulsion paint and acrylic gloss varnish to finish them off.

The bridge " pontoons" were scratchbuilt as were the farmhouses using picture framing card and foamboard covered with texturing paste.