maandag 23 april 2012

Re-building a SYW Prussian Army

Before I continue expanding the SYW French, I need to organize the SYW Prussians and Austrians which were re-based in January. From the duplicates and extra elements I will fill some vacant spots in the French order of battle. As with the French and Allies at Hastenbeck, I selected a historical confrontation which would use most or all of my Prussians and Austrians.

A prelude Two years ago, we played the first phase of the Bohemian campaign of 1757, whereby four Prussian armies entered Bohemia in April of that year surprising the Austrians. The opening of the campaign was brilliantly executed, as Frederick advanced over a broad front of 200 miles to eventually converge on Prague two weeks later.

The reader wishing to know more about the events leading up to the Battle of Prague, I can recommend, section campaigns.

We played out one of those columns which had the Austrians fight delaying actions back to Prague making use of force marches, night marches, and ambushes. It was a very insightful exercise as we recorded orders on a daily basis including breaking camp, march distance and setting up camp.

We did not play the large engagements of Prague (May) or Kolin (June), though we both had large collections, they were simply not large enough. Now, rebasing the entire SYW collection for DBA-HX means we can hopefully duplicate those battles.

I selected the Frederick’s order of battle before Prague as this was the largest army he commanded since the start of his reign, 64,000 men organized in 66 battalions, 113 squadrons, 82 heavy guns and 128 battalion guns. Using my conversion ratio, this equates to 66 elements of foot, 23 of horse, 8 cannon and 12 artillery elements. This total excludes command elements.

To the north of Prague, was Keith’s corps set to block Prince Charles’ escape. This added an additional 30,000 or in DBA terms, 29 foot, 8 horse and 3 artillery. Looking at the order of battle, I can further define the troop types, so Frederick and Keith’s forces break down thusly:

Frederick’s forces:
9 Kn (Cuirassier), 6 Cv (Dragoon), 8 Cv (Hussar), 11 Grenadier, 35 Musketeer, 18 Fusilier

Kieth’s corps:
4 Kn (Cuirassier), 2 Cv (Dragoon), 2 Cv (Hussar), 9 Grenadier, 18 Muketeer, 2 Sk (Frei korps)

You will note, the Prussian Hussars are classed as Cavalry and not Light Horse, as the changes instituted by Warnery produced battlefield cavalry, even Frederick commented they fought like Dragons. The Hussars of other nations were not yet as disciplined, so are still for DBA-HX purposes LH.

Checking the order of battle with what I have, the cavalry are complete, however, I am short 8 grenadier and 5 musketeer elements but have enough for all the fusilier and Frei Korps. This will mean a short shopping list.

On a footnote, the cavalry of the entire Prussian army consisted of 13 Cuirassier, 12 Dragoon and 10 Hussar regiments, so all regiments were present at Prague with the exception of four Dragoon regiments facing the Swedes and Russians. Further, there were 34 Musketeer (68 bns), 16 Fusilier regiments (32 bns), and 23 converged grenadier battalions which meant nearly the entire Prussian army was involved in the Invasion of Bohemia.

Next step All that remains is to compare the order of battle with those figures already based and look at the regiments that need to be filled with what I already have. More later.


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