Sunday, January 10, 2016

Retreat from Smolensk - Part the Second.

Lately I have been finding it very hard to continue this particular narrative.  I'm not sure why.  But in order to keep things going methought here simply to post a sequence of pix of this 'Hill Defence' action with captions serving as commentary.  Later, I hope to renew the narrative, with some comments on: 
  1. The 'Retreat from Smolensk' as a 'logical' campaign;
  2. The programming for this 'Hill defence' battle as per C.S.Grant's Solo Wargame Scenarios book;
  3. The battle;
  4. Some comments on my 'Big Battles for Small Tables' rule set (the development of which, I feel sorry to say, has stalled somewhat).

Austrian I Corps, Divisions in echelon, follow up II
(Hungarian) Corps.

The village (Zonkovo) proving something of an obstacle, 2nd
Hungarian Division drops back behind the 3rd.
The Corps artillery carries on through.

First Hungarian (Grenadier) Division veers to the right of

... as I Reserve Corps surges forward.

The bickering of the skirmish lines.  Both sides' shooting
is pretty good!

Elements of the French I Corps awaiting attack.  Fifth Division
stands beside the Corps artillery, 3rd Division partially obscured
by the woods.  Skirmishers of 4th Division in the foreground.

Fourth French Division awaiting attack.

The skirmishing has been no light ordeal for jager
or voltigeur!

General view looking towards the French centre and the
small village of Clxix.  

Third (Hungarian) Division under fire from swarms of voltigeurs.

The action has become general along the
French right and centre... the pressure mounts...

The Hungarians push forward against steady resistance...

... and close in on the French first line.  The 2nd Hungarian
Division is hurrying up...

... to join the fray.  General Dessaix's Division, though handing
out a few licks of its own, is taking a battering

Brisk action along the line.

Storming the French centre: 14th Division in the village, 5th
to the right of it. On the far side of the village is the IV Corps
artillery and 13th Division.

French centre under heavy attack by Austrian and Hungarian
elite infantry.

Austrian Dragoons of the Reserve Corps charge the guns
of IV Corps...

Here we'll leave it for now, with the French under enormous pressure.  Meanwhile, what is Reynier's VII Corps doing?  Or the French cavalry Reserve?  Well, all these pictures depict maybe four turns, and the Austrians have really only just reached the edge of the rising ground.  French responses were to be triggered by that event.

More later...


  1. Love seeing your Austrians Ion! :)

    1. Thanks, Mark. They did well in this battle, too...

  2. Good work keeping up the head of steam. Lord knows I've plenty of half finished blog drafts.

    A pleasantly busy table.

    1. Don't look so bad, eh? The main point of this particular action was to see how much I could get onto the table, and still have a decent game.

  3. Nice looking game! I always enjoy seeing Austrians deployed.

    1. I am quite fond of my Austrians. White is the best military colour, with red a close second...

    2. Indeed! I have 15mm Austrians for Napoleonics and SYW.

  4. Looks intense and very very nice...great looking Austrians!