Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Skirmish at Brudenitz - the campaign begins

My first battle of the year using the Honours of War rules fits into the beginning of my Seven Years War campaign.
Set in 1758 in the fictional Rotwasser valley, the campaign centres around the possession of the fortress of Colslau which controls the confluence of the Rotwasser with the Elsa river. The Austrians have sent a force to besiege Colslau, and the campaign opens in April with the advance of the Imperial forces to encircle the fortress.
The map of the Rotwasser valley, Colslau is left centre (labelled 1)
The initial positions in the first week of April are as follows:
The Prussians: in Colslau 4,000 garrison troops under General Kranwitz; to the north at Rotbrucke a single regiment of IR 44 von Jungkenn Fusiliers under their colonel; to the east at Brudernitz on the Elsa river, Garrison Regiment II Alt-Sydow, IR 47 Rohr Fusiliers, Hussar regiment 7 von Malachowski under General Kessell.

The Austrians: At Sitzburg to the west of Colslau Regiments 12 Botta, 16 Konigsegg, 28 Wied, the 1 regiment of grenadiers and the 6 Liechtenstein Dragoons under General von Schilcher; At Ober-Rotberg to the South East of Colslau Regiments 31 Haller, 34 Batthanynayi, 37 Esterhazy, the Warasdiner grenzers, and the 31 De Ligne Dragoons under Baron Nokedli; At Sibilnitz north-east of Colslau Regiment 14 Salm, 36 Browne, 38 De Ligne and 24 Esterhazy Hussars under General Palmino.

Von Schilcher, in overall command, has advanced his preparations to besiege the western suburbs of Colslau. Nokedli is preparing to entrench the around the south bank of the Elsa, while Palmino has been dispatched to cross the Elsa at the only bridge at Brudernitz. He is then to advance south-west and begin operations to cut off the last road out of Colslau.

Thus we come to 8th April 1758 and the first conflict at Brudernitz. General Kessell has deployed his small force on the southern bank of the Elsa as Palmino advances towards him. For the purposes of the Honours of War rules, Kessell is competent while Palmino is dithering.

The battlefield at the beginning of the action, Brudernitz and the north bank in the foreground, Sibilnitz at the back.
The action was a short and sharp one. The Malachowski Hussars were charge by the Esterhazy hussars, but with their countercharge forced them into retreat and then pursued them to a rout from the field. Before they could reform though, they were left exposed to canister fire from the Austrian artillery, which did for them. The infantry battle was an even match, until the Browne regiment marched up and deployed on the flank of the Alt-Sydow garrison regiment. The Prussians couldnot stand up to the crossfire and enfilade and proceeded to retreat into the Elsa. This left the Rohr regiment which abandoned the field and moved north.
End of the battle. The Browne regiment can be seen in the foreground, in the position in which it was able to enfilade the Alt-Sydow regiment. The Rohr regiment can be seen retreating over the bridge.
So the first skirmish has seen the Prussians retreat north towards Andelnitz (22 on the map) and Palmino secure the Elsa crossign for the Austrians. Will Kessel take his survivors into Colslau or head north to maintain his freedom of action?



  1. Great looking game. Short and sweet it was indeed!

    1. Indeed. The sides closed so fast that the auto-rally never managed to come into effect. So a couple of turns of shooting and it was all over.

  2. A very nice looking campaign map. Do forces move point to point along the roads?

  3. Thanks Peter. The map is really just there to provide a context to the narrative campaign, and because I like drawing maps. My ACW map for later in the year is much more functional and is square-gridded, so watch out for that one.