DVD? What's that? Is that some sort of enigmatic antediluvian machine?
DVD? What's that? Is that some sort of enigmatic antediluvian machine?
Last edited by Marshal Lannes; 07 Apr 11 at 08:41.
If you are Charles Bingley the flowers.
Otherwise the USB memory stick
The USB stick of course, we want screenshots!
Last edited by Marshal Lannes; 07 Apr 11 at 08:42.
Action South-west of Siegen burg
Just before noon, Hiller orders the cessation of artillery pounding and begins a general assault along his whole line. Bavarain artillery are ripping gaping holes within the Austrian lines, who move forward relentlessly. The fighting in the great forest is still inconclusive with both sides taking moderate loss, although that said , 2 battalions of Austrians have already broken and fled. Lefevre, himself has rallied a routing battalion and is leading it back into position , in the forest. The far right of the Austrian line has seen the Bavarian skirmish line being pushed back. Colonel Zandt, seeing the bold advance of the Austrian 49th Line Regiment, made the decision to protect the forward guns by a lightning cavalry assault. The Bavarian cavalry of the Prinz Royal Chevauxlegers, (A), raced through their own gun battery and caught the 1st Battalion of the Austrian 49th head on. The Austrians suffered 214 casualties to only 83 Bavarian horemen. The remaining Austrians fell back on their 2nd Battalion for moral support. Hiller's reaction to the charging Bavarian cavalry was swift, ordering the 3rd Austrian chevauxleger to melee the Bavarians, while sending the 6th Austrian chevauxleger regiment, (B), to create havoc in the place vacated by Zandt's cavalry. Losses for both sides in these melees have been about 60-70 , so are therefore moderate.
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Adding insult to injury- accurate Bavarian gunfire knocked out 2 Austrian guns in quick succesion. (C). There were originally 6- 3Pounder guns with a range of 700 metres here, but are now down to only 3. The Austrians have made a reciprocal assault on a Bavarian battery, (D), and have taken 4 guns. The Bavarian batteries, including the notable 12pounders, behind point, (D) will no doubt. quickly limber and scurry away, which leaves the tantalizing possiblity of St. Sulpice's Curirassiers being used yet again, ( as at Pfeffenhausen ), to smash into the 6th Austrian regiment and this time both regiments can be used directly. Ha ! Ha ! - Bye- bye Austrians of the 6th. Of course , the 1st Bavarian Division must hold and it is yet unclear who exactly has the upper-hand , but that said, the superiority in numbers may be the deciding factor as equal loss is not sustainable for Lefevre.
Defensive terrain Note :
The 1st Bavarian Division, as deployed has anchored both it’s flanks on obstructed terrain, i.e. a great forest to the east and a large orchard and slight rise to the west. The Austrian cavalry have no option but to be used frontally and cannot harass a hanging flank. At the beginning of the action, Rechberg had 4 battalions stationed at the edge of the great forest. This gives them a -30% defensive value and the easy ability to sally forth and engage and most importantly cover the main road and their artillery position. The Austrians are forced to initially engage this position to uncover the Bavarian artillery line from it’s support. Usually a regiment will do for this but Rechberg decided to use 4 Bavarian battalions for the simple reason that the crossroads behind ,(D) would have been taken and the prospect of having Austrian artillery firing upon Siegenburg from the rear would have compromised that position totally. There is the argument that the village of Siegenburg should be abandoned and the Bavarian line should be positioned on the rise to the north-west, but this is a point of personal discrimination; I would rather have Hiller’s Austrians hemmed in between 900 metres of unobstructed terrain with the usage of covered flanks and also a disordering stream than the advantage of elevation bonus. Sometimes , you have to make the elegant choice over the wholly practical as it does lead to more interesting gameplay, especially when playing against a human opponent. A perfect defensive position is mostly unattainable, but that said ,it is always a good idea to hem a superior force and offer a melee engagement in woods to distract or delay a frontal assault.
Gudin defends Abensberg
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To the north , about 6000 metres, Gudin can already see the lead elements of Hohenzollern's 3rd Corps , who will be now starting to deploy, to face him. Gudin has no cavalry support and only 2 artillery batteries to support him . the situation is unlikely to change as Davout is covering Rosenberg at Bachl.
Last edited by Marshal Lannes; 04 May 11 at 07:12.
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Letter sent to General De Wrede. Schonbrunn. October 8th, 1809.
RE: Bavarian troops defending the Tyrol passes and aiding Hofer's rebellion.
I am displeased with the Bavarian troops. Instead of fighting; they get up charges and plots against their commanders. I have just brought General Stengel before a court of enquiry for evacuating Golling. Why did he not die there ? No one has any right to evacuate a position without orders from the Commander- In – Chief. The Bavarian troops have become demoralised. Show my letter to Deroy, and tell me whether the Bavarians want to win my good or my bad opinion. When troops are demoralised, it is for their commander and officers to restore their morale, or to die in the attempt. There have been instances of cowardice, such as allowing oneself to be taken prisoner in the passes, rather than securing the retreat, which for the honour of the Bavarian army, ought to be denounced and punished.
At the front, there is no such person as a Prince, possibly the Prince Royal has good cause to complain of the Duke of Dantzig, but that is not a question of military honour. His duty was to march on the enemy, who had insulted the Bavarian flag, and attack him outside Salzburg. I had thought of addressing an order to your army, but it would have remained on record against you, and I prefer to write privately to you, for I have a regard for your abilityand courage. Speak to your comrades, see that they are not disgraced. I wil have no one objecting to me with “if”, or “but”, or “because”. I have been a soldier all my life. You must either conquer or die. I could wish that, at the first sight of attack,the Prince had visited his outposts, and restored the moraleof his division. Make such use of this letter as you think fit. I know that you are as fond of the Prince (Karl Augustus Ludwig), as I am.
Hofer's rebellion and the Battles of Bergisel.
1809: war with Austria and insurrection in the Tyrol
In 1809, Napoleon and France dominated continental Europe. Eugène de Beauharnais was installed as viceroy of the Kingdom of Italy, Murat was ruling the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and Napoleon's brothers and sisters had been crowned as rulers throughout Western Europe. Prussia had been defeated in 1806 and 1807 and Russia was now allied with the French Empire following the Treaty of Tilsit in July 1807. Spain had also been invaded in 1808; Austria was isolated, supported only by Britain. The pro-war camp in the Austrian court, under the guidance of Johann Philipp Stadion, Austrian foreign minister, was strong, and seizing on Hormayr's Austrian ideals, pushed Francis towards war. Andreas Hofer had political experience, having served in the Tyrolean Landtag in 1791, had been a captain in the Tyrolean irregulars in 1796 during Napoleon's Italian Campaign, and as an innkeeper was perfectly placed in terms of communicating news of the insurrection. As a local leader, he had also come into contact with Archduke Johann when the latter was forced to abandon the Tyrol after the Austrian defeat in 1805. Secret talks took place between Hofer, Archduke Johann and Stadion in January 1809, and an insurrection in the Tyrol was mooted as a possible diversion to the main military operations in the Germanic states.6 The area was also important in protecting Austria's flank during the war with France, particularly from troops coming up from Italy. Whilst troops departed towards Bavaria and Warsaw, 7,000 troops entered the Tyrol as messengers signalled the outbreak of the insurrection. On 9th April 1809, Archduke Charles crossed the Austrian border into Bavaria and war had begun.
Between 9th and 13th April, the Bavarian troops stationed in the region were massacred or driven out. On 12th April, Innsbruck was captured by Tyrolean tirailleurs. The entire region was in rebellion. By 12th April, 3,000 Bavarian troops had been killed, injured or taken prisoner.7 In particular, the French and Bavarian troops that fought in the Tyrol, used to battlefield combat, found the guerrilla nature of warfare difficult to cope with. The mountainous region limited the possibility for pitched battles. The Tyroleans, fighting as skirmishing sharpshooters, were highly mobile and able to pick off the advancing enemy from high up in the mountains. Alongside this they developed another highly successful tactic: artificial avalanches. A French general serving in the Armée d'Italie in December 1809 noted dispiritedly:
"The enemy can scale the highest of mountains, which are completely inaccessible to us, even for our most nimble voltigeurs [light skirmish troops]. I could not understand how they managed to walk on the snow, whilst we found ourselves up to our necks in it the moment we stepped off the cleared path. I finally discovered their secret. They have round boards, roughly fourteen pouces in diameter [35cm] that they attach to their feet, preventing them from sinking [in the snow]. I immediately had them tested, and they are currently being made for my voltigeurs, but they will not be anything like as skilled with them as the [Tyroleans] are, who are used to them.
The French and Bavarian defeats continued to mount up. On 13th April, General Bisson and his troops arrived near Innsbruck, low on ammunition and supplies, only to find themselves completely surrounded by Tyrolean irregulars. They were forced to surrender. By 16th April, Austrian troops had arrived in Innsbruck and the region was declared liberated. In the city, Hofer assumed the title of commander on behalf of the House of Hapsburg.9 Napoleon seemed content to leave the Tyrol to the Austrians, concerned more with events that were to take place further north.10 The French emperor, particularly early on in the insurrection, seems to have been unaware of the severity of events going on in the Tyrol. On 26th April, following Eugène de Beauharnais' retreat before Archduke Johann at Sacile (16th April), he told the viceroy that he need not fear much trouble in the area.11 However the insurrection had already been raging for two weeks, during which time Napoleon had arrived at the Bavarian front, defeating the Austrian army over five days, between 19th and 23rd April.12 Following Bavarian loss of control of the area, Napoleon took the problem seriously, dispatching Lefebvre to bring the Tyrol into line. Schwaz soon fell to Bavarian troops under the command of Karl Philipp Josef Wrede and Lefebvre seized Innsbruck on 19th May. Peace appeared to have returned to the area. Innsbruck changes handson the 8th.
However, upon capturing a French messenger, the Tyrolean command learned of Lefebvre's planned withdrawal from Innsbruck to Salzburg. Seizing the opportunity, hostilities were relaunched on 29th May, driven in part by news of the defeat of French troops at Aspern-Essling on 21st and 22nd May. Tyrolean tirailleurs captured the Berg Isel, a large hill and important strategic point to the south of Innsbruck. On 30th May, Hofer retook Innsbruck as Bavarian troops fled. As celebrations broke out across the region, tension began to mount between Hormayr and Hofer, Hormayr becoming jealous of Hofer's popularity.13 With Hormayr busy with the administrative, financial and defensive reorganisation of the Tyrol, Hofer returned home on 9th June. Austria abandons the Tyrol.
Between 5th and 6th July, French troops defeated their Austrian counterparts at Wagram. On 12th July, Austrian Archduke Charles signed the armistice at Znaim, which explicitly stipulated that Austrian troops should be evacuated from the Tyrol and the Vorarlberg. By 21st July, the Tyrolean rebels had received confirmation of the armistice, and the fact that Austria had abandoned them. Napoleon commented in his letter to Lefebvre that the armistice was merely to buy him some time to deal with the insurrection. "When I agreed the armistice, it was principally to subdue the Tyrol."14 No longer prepared to ignore the insurrection, the French emperor wasted no time in instructing the Duc de Dantzig: "I want you to be in Innsbruck by 1st August. No remonstrating, be harsh. Disarm the country, take a large number of hostages, and make examples."15 20,000 French, Bavarian and Saxon troops invaded the Tyrol from the north; 10,000 Italian troops came up from the south. Lefebvre seized control of the northern towns, encountering no resistance. Hormayr and his administrative staff fled Innsbruck, leaving the region without any leader. By 1st August, Lefebvre was installed in the city, and had published a decree ordering the inhabitants to disarm and the surrender of the insurrection's leaders. And yet, retaking the area was not to be a simple task. Firstly, Bavarian troops searched the local population, and then French and Bavarian troops under General Rouyer headed south to secure the remaining unpacified regions. But at the Eisack valley they faced resistance, coming up against Tyrolean tirailleurs and artificial avalanches. As Lefebvre followed with 7,000 men, he too was ambushed en route and forced to negotiate. And after days of negotiation, on his return to Innsbruck, he was harassed by Tyrolean irregulars the entire way. Canons, men and horses lined the route, abandoned, injured or dead. Too conspicuous in his own uniform, the French general was forced to wear that of a simple dragoon. The Berg Isel fell to the Tyroleans on 13th August. Faced with diminishing supplies and munitions, Lefebvre retreated with the remaining troops. Once again, Innsbruck belonged to Hofer and his men. On 15th August, Hofer became regent of the Tyrol, in the name of the emperor. Beset by problems, the regime would last two months. Hofer struggled to re-establish any administrative system in the city, the vast majority of the workers having fled with the Austrians or otherwise unwilling to work under a simple paysan. The treasury was also nearly empty and trade was almost non-existent. With the farmers away from their homes, crops began to fail and food became scarce. Many returned home.
As negotiations between France and Austria continued following the armistice, Metternich, Austrian Minister of State, pushed for a peace treaty, realising that Austria could no longer support a war. Napoleon refused point blank any agreement which would allow Austrian control of the Tyrol: "The Tyrol will never again belong to the House of Austria, for this country separates Germany from Italy and touches Switzerland. I will never allow this country to be outside my influence."16 With the Treaty of Schönbrunn signed on 14th October 1809, Austria was hit with war indemnities of 85 million Francs and the loss of a huge amount of territory, including Carinthia, Croatia and Galacia, which all went to France. The Tyrol became a Bavarian territory again. On the same day, Eugène de Beauharnais was given the mission of conquering the Tyrol. Following his retreat from Innsbruck, Lefebvre had been replaced by the Duke Drouet d'Erlon as head of the Bavarian forces. On 21st October, with Bavarian, French and Italian troops pouring into the region, the Tyroleans abandoned Innsbruck for the Berg Isel. Winter was closing in and with food shortages growing, Hofer's support declined and many of his men dispersed back into the mountains. On 28th/29th October, Hofer learnt of the peace treaty that had been signed by Austria. Abandoned by his beloved emperor, he took refuge in alcohol.17 The Tyrolean morale had been broken. By the evening of 1st November, Drouet d'Erlon had recaptured Innsbruck and the Berg Isel. Over the next few weeks, Hofer surrendered to the French, only to break his word shortly after and call for the resumption of hostilities. By 11th November, 1809, the Tyrol was entirely occupied. As reprisals were being carried out across the region, Hofer fled into the mountains with a large bounty on his head. On 5th January 1810, he was betrayed and denounced to the authorities, yet it was another three weeks before he was captured. On 28th January, he, his wife and his son were taken to Bozen, before eventually his family was released on 30th January. Napoleon learnt of the capture at the start of February and ordered Hofer to be tried immediately and executed.
Despite Hofer's devotion to the Hapsburg family, Francis I made little effort to intervene. Metternich was keen to treat with France, and neither was prepared to disrupt relations by raising the rather difficult subject of the innkeeper who had defied Napoleon for months. Austria needed breathing space to recover from the 1805 and 1809 wars and with Napoleon's "divorce" from Josephine finalised on 16th December 1809 and Marie-Louise Hapsburg lined up as a replacement, neither country looked to upset matters. On 20th February 1810, Hofer was executed by firing squad. Eight days later, the Tyrol region was divided up between Bavaria and the newly-created Illyrian Provinces. By March, conscription had been re-introduced. Indeed, a Tyrolean contingent would serve alongside Napoleon during the Russian campaign of 1812.
Andreas Hofer and the history of the insurrection
Napoleon never fully understood the insurrection or the reasons for which Hofer was fighting. Despite the mantra by which Hofer lived, "for God, the Emperor and the fatherland", Napoleon never appeared to grasp that it was an ideological war against the French revolution and everything that it sought to eradicate, including conservative, traditional social hierarchy and the Catholic religion, as much as a war of liberation in reaction to the reforms implemented by Bavaria. Hofer's devoted loyalty to the Hapsburgs, although with hindsight misguided, remained incomprehensible for the pragmatist Napoleon, who never hesitated to dethrone a king or lock up the pope if it suited his needs.
However, the history of the insurrection and Hofer's role has become caught up in the historical debate and the legendary retellings that followed his death. The first issue up for debate was the role that Hofer played in the insurrection. His strongly held ideological views and devotion to the Austrian crown made him a perfect figurehead in the rebellion against the Bavarian forces. Equally, he rarely intervened in tactical discussions of a military nature. His leadership and his worth in battle came from his presence, the strength of his belief, and the moral and symbolic authority that he brought.18 Jean Sévillia notes that "Hofer's legitimacy was neither purely of a military nature, nor purely political. It was based on feudal order […] founded on a moral pact which linked [him] and the Archduke Johann and, above that, the Emperor Francis I."19 He embodied the Tyrol region: a paysan, deeply religious, profoundly loyal and reservedly modest. His regency was characterised by the emphasis he placed on hospitality, piety and tradition. Even his thick, dark beard, modest attire and large hat contributed to his image as the embodiment of the Tyrol. Debate over his involvement was not long in coming; on 4th March, 1810, just two weeks after his death, the Gazette de France, reporting on Hofer's execution, remarked that he was "not a bad man, nor dangerous in himself, but his was caught up in his enthusiasm, and many terrible things were committed in his name. This man had absolutely no knowledge of military tactics, administration or politics; he was simple and ignorant. The Tyroleans venerate him, in sorts…"20 Already at this point, Hofer had become a Tyrolean symbol.
Then, in 1817, Hormayr published anonymously his Geschichte Hofers, his history of the insurrection and Hofer's actual involvement in it. Highly critical of the innkeeper, he also sought to claim the credit for the creation of the Hofer myth and emphasise his role in the events. Despite the politics involved in such an attempt, it does serve to illustrate the uncertainty around Hofer and the 'legend' of Hofer. His story greatly appealed to the Romantics of the time and those that came later. William Wordsworth dedicated a poem to him. In 1830, James Robinson Planché adapted the story of William Tell for an opera based on Hofer and the insurrection. Numerous histories appeared during the middle period of the 19th century, in French, Italian, German and English, many almost fictional in their retelling of the insurrection and Hofer's role. The image of Hofer was also embraced in the name of various different causes: German unification and Pan-Germanism during the 19th century (despite the fact that he was in fact fighting Bavarian occupation21), an anti-Nazi, anti-fascist resistance movement in the south Tyrol named the Andreas Hofer Allianz in 1939…
Yet during the 20th century, very little was written in France.22 In Austria, Hofer remained in the collective memory. A statue of the rebel was erected at the Berg Isel in 1893 and in 1909, the centenary celebrations of the insurrection saw 33,000 tirailleurs parade in Innsbruck. 1959 was celebrated with a parade of 26,000 tirailleurs. The Austrian monarchy of Hofer's triumvirate may be no more, but in the Tyrol, Hofer was not forgotten. Yet the exploitation of Hofer's image, indeed the 'idea' of Andreas Hofer, remains paradoxical, to the extent that many have lost sight of what he did and what he was actually fighting for. Hofer was fighting for his Catholicism, his Emperor and his homeland. It was not individual liberty that he was fighting for, but freedom from Bavarian domination. He wanted a return to Habsburg rule, despite being used and then abandoned by the Austrian Emperor to whom he was so devoted.
Last edited by Marshal Lannes; 15 Apr 11 at 07:28.
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As predicted, the 5th Cuirrassiers of St.Sulpice attacked; (B), they, however, for all their elan, achieved a comparative failure. the initial premise was to disrupt and throw back at least 2 Austrian battalions. in that they definitely failed and with the austrians consolidating and continuosly poring a withering fire into the Bavarian lines, this failure may prove fatal.
The reason for the failure of the cavalry charge are obvious.
1. No leader present - so,no combat bonus.
2. Charging upon level ground, so no elevation, downhill bonus.
3. The target unit was a fresh, unfatigued, undisordered good quality unit.
4.The combat results parameter was at the low edge of the spectrum.
5. Opportunity fire was very effective before the charge hit home.
Glory at Pfeffenhausen but shame at Siegenburg.......too much elan !
Fortunately the Austrian cavalry did not fare better in their assaults. The 6th chevauxleger, (A), charge looked impressive but gave and sustained minimal loss, only pushing back the Bavarian infantry, who retaliated with a withering fire from 2 directions. the austrian cavallry were then hit by 2 floating regiments of Bavarian cavalry who meleed,(disordered) in fewer numbers ,giving and sustaining a 22 to 18 loss. This impact was finally felt at the end of the turn, wherein the 6th Chevauxlegers routed towards the village of Siegenburg. the 5th cuirassiers meanwhile, attempted a flanking charge in a disordered state after turning, (C), and so managed to push back a single Austrian battalion. they will of course suffer nasty opportunity fire in their withdrawal so only adding to the wasted opportunity.
Louis' 5th |corps have finished deploying and should commence their attack at 1.30pm. the time now is 1.15pm., ( game turn 124).The 1st Bavarian division must hold for at least another 4-5 hours, but it is looking doubtful.......
Last edited by Marshal Lannes; 15 Apr 11 at 07:29.
A very interesting and addictive reading! I'm anxious to see what follows... Congratulations Marshal Lannes, much better with the screenshots.