Thursday 16 August 2012

200 years of the battle of Smolensk

 The city awaits the french assault. Tho the right of the brech is the Brtislavl subrub and in the centre the orad to Moskow.
 The protagonists of the battle the artillery batteties

 first blood: an impetous russian brigade is routed by concertated fire of artillery and polish voltigeurs
 the frenchs advance on the ciry, in the foreground Poniatowski's polish division (whose voltigeurs are shooting the jägers inside bratislavl), in the centre veteran french infantry that fought in Eylau and Friedland with some austrian allies, and in the background french recruits (the blue ones).
 the pride of the french cavalry is destroyed by salvoes from the russian cannons
 but the imperials keep their advance, with some hand to hand between skirmishers

 closing up: the fire from the french batteries destroys one of the infantry brigades in the russian left, while the polish voligeurs are overhlemed in hand to hand by the jägers, the suburb has accumulated 6 woundss from artillery and so we decided that it was burning and impenetrable. In the background a unit of french recruits has also routed under canister.
 The cossacks appear out of the breach and charge under cannonnades against the autrians in Bratislavl that have suffered terrible losses due to canister wrom above the wall.

 the riders of the steppe continue their slaughter of imperials...
 until being also destroyed by french shells
 the last russian unit in the backgroud brecks under explosion and thunder
 the french cannon also finishs with the jägers
 to avoid destruction the veterans and hussars falls back leaving the battle in hands of their gunners
 the artillery duel looks bad for the russians as one by one their batteries crumble under the expert shotting of the imperials
 Murat and the remmants of the french army contemplate the bombardement from a secure distance
 the final movements: after eliminating the russin guns the french come closer to the city, with infantry and cavalry support the cannons strart to set fire onto the centennary city. Uwilling to risk their men in a frontal attack against the canister the russians abandon the place burning everything and destroying bridges ans stocks behind them.

Outcome: Napoleon manages to capturate just a pile of ashes suffering greater losses than their enemies, the road of Moskow is opened but it remains the challenge of facing the whole russian army in a great battle that decide the campaign: Borodino.

The burning of Smolensk