Sunday, 6 October 2013

All Set For Bautzen Bicentennial Bash

At last, we are ready for our Bautzen Bicentennial game.

As self-appointed gamemeister, I decided that my/our initial aim to do both days of the battle was a little too ambitious, so made the unilateral decision to play day two, 21st May, only. This should give us a more manageable, big bash battle; if not, the blame will lie with me.

Last night (and into the early hours of this morning) we translated my map of the battlefield—interpreted from Petre, Lawford, Chandler and Esposito & Elting—constructing the necessary extra hills, improvising with our available roads and rivers to produce a pretty fine looking set-up (in my heavily biased opinion!).

'Alexander' deployed the majority of the Russo-Prussian army on the table, although the Russian reserves of Gallitzin V and Constantine remain just off-board (east).

On the French-Allied side, the scenario dictates that parts of Oudinot's XII Corps (furthest south), MacDonald's XI Corps (next in line) and Marmont's VI Corps (beside MacDonald) are on table with Bertrand's IV Corps, the Guard and Latour-Maubourg's cavalry just off-table (west).

Ney's and Barclay's commands are away to the north, around Klix (see map).

Hand-drawn map of our actual table (the grid represents our terrain 'squares').

Looking north along the length of the table. The foothills of the Bohemian mountains are in the right foreground, town of Mehltheuer in centre nearest camera.

A series of photos of the Russo-Prussian positions, from north (von Zeithen's Upper Silesian Brigade in the redoubt on the Kreckwitz Heights) to Miloradovich's left (held by Ilowaisky X's Cossacks and Schachafsky's 3rd Division of Eugene de Württemberg's II Corps) in the Bohemian foothills in the south.

The same thing from the French-Allied side , but from south to north. Lorencz's and Pacthod's divisions (Oudinot's XII Corps), Charpentier's and Gérard's divisions (MacDonald's XI Corps) next, Bonnet's division (in woods) and Frederich's division (both of Marmont's VI Corps) are the northern-most French-Allied troops on board. Bertrand's IV Corps is off-board facing the Prussians in the north.

Close-up views of the Russo-Prussian defenders.

Eugene de Württemberg's II Corps in the Bohemian foothills.
Berg's I Corps between Jenkwitz and Baschütz.
Von Yorck's Prusso-Russians north of Baschütz.
Kleist's and Klüx's Prussians around Litten.
von Zeithen's Prussians on the Kreckwitz Heights.

Already 'Alexander' and 'Napoleon' are devising their plans for the destruction of one another's armies and a successful conclusion to the campaign in Saxony!

References cited and consulted

Blond, G (1995) La Grande Armée. Translated by M May. First Published Originally published 1979. Arms and Armour, London. pp. 392–394.

Chandler, DG (1979) Bautzen, Battle of 20–21 May 1813. In, Dictionary of the Napoleonic Wars. MacMillan Publishing Co., New York. pp. 44–46

Chandler, D (1966) Part Fifteen Twilight: The Struggle of Nations, Section 77 Lützen and Bautzen. In, The Campaigns of Napoleon. Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London. 1993 paperback edition. pp. 889–898.

Esposito, VJ and Elting, JR (1964) Military History and Atlas of the Napoleonic Wars. Praeger, New York.

Hofschröer, P and Hook, C (2001) Lützen & Bautzen 1813: The Turning Point. Campaign 87 (Ed. D Chandler). Osprey Publishing, Oxford, England. 1st edition. 96 pp.

Lachouque, CH (1966) Napoleon's Battles: A History of His Campaigns. Translated by R Monkcom. George Allen & Unwin Ltd, London. pp. 344–348.
Lawford, J (1977) Napoleon: The Last Campaigns 1813-15. Crown Publishers Inc., New York. pp. 40–45.

Nafziger, G (n.d.) French Forces at Bautzen 20/21 May 1813. The Nafziger Collection of Orders of Battle, file name 813ECK.

Nafziger, G (n.d.) Russo-Prussian Forces at Bautzen 20/21 May 1813. The Nafziger Collection of Orders of Battle, file name 813ECE.

Petre, FL (1974) Napoleon's Last Campaign in Germany, 1813. First Published 1912. Arms and Armour Press, London, UK. pp. 99–141.

Pigeard, A (2009) Leipzig : La bataille des Nations (16-19 octobre 1813). Napoleon 1er Editions, St Cloud, France. 82 pp.

Vane, CW (2008) Battle Imperial: the Campaigns in Germany & France for the Defeat of Napoleon 1813-1814. Regiments & Campaigns Series First Published 1830. Leonaur. pp. 44–52.

von Wartenburg, CY (2004) Napoleon As A General. The Wolseley Series 1 First Published 1897. (Ed. MWH James). The Naval & Military Press Ltd., Uckfield, East Sussex. pp. 258–262.


  1. On your mark...ready...
    Looking good, VERY good!

    1. Thank you Phil. I am looking forward to the game!

  2. What a great looking battlefield! Are my calculations correct, and it's 6 x 16 feet? Best wishes for a great game, and of course.... a victory for the Emperor!

    1. Thanks Peter. My sentiments too!

      Yes, that's right. The exact dimensions, because of the size of the boards, are 16' x 2 m! We call it 2 m x 4.8 m, so 6' x 16' in round figures.

  3. A great looking battle set-up James - I'm really looking forward to following this one!

  4. The historical setup is ready, now will there be any material changes to the outcome?

  5. Most impressive and inspiring! I am looking forward to being there.

    1. Us too Mark. I'll send you the Russo-Prussian briefing in the next day or two,