Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Safe from invaders

Tremp, 6th November 1713

--They're withdrawing, Sire!

--True --General Moragues simply responded. From his high viewpoint on top of Puigcercós hill, he could see the remnants of the Caraffa Regiment(*) fleeing northwest. They had reached Tremp town earlier than his own Miquelets column. But fortunately enough, the town had refused to open gates to the Spaniards, thus forcing them to face Moragues' column in open field.

The battle started early in the morning. A handful of Miquelets were no match for a well trained and commanded Line Infantry in the open, so that the Catalans soon began falling back. An excess of confidence on victory made the Spanish force pursue the retreating force up to a place called barranc de l'Espona (Espona gulley).

They should have noticed, they should have expected some kind of stratagem from the enemy --for it wasn't that normal for a Miquelets force to regularly deploy as if Line Infantry they were.

They didn't however, so that their carefree pursue lead them to being pitifully ambushed at Espona gulley by General Moragues' bulk force of Miquelets, who had previously taken best positions there.

After an almost point blank surprise volley, the Catalans rushed out from the bushes, charging fiercely with pistol and cutlass. It was a fast and furious carnage, with terrible results for the Spanish side --nearly 20% casualties, that is 4 out from 18 figures. On their side, the Catalans suffered about 5% casualties (1 out from 18).

The enemy nearly routed completely, but the Spanish commander Marquis of Bus managed to avoid the defeat to become a complete disaster. Anyway, his column would not stop withdrawing until crossing again the Aragonese-Catalonian border. It was a certainly small battle, but consequences of it were dramatic: the Pyrenees valleys would remain safe from invaders for a long while.

(*) Not Spaniards properly, but an Italian unit in Bourbon Spanish service.

[Not actually fought, as you can easily imagine. As Jordi and I had found no time to game it, we decided to link its development and results to those of the next FoW tournament game Jordi would hold. Well, his panzerabteilung literally smashed the Soviet battalion facing him by a crushing 6 - 1, so that I've felt comfortable enough to describe a similarly briliant Catalan victory in this other war! --OK OK, that was quite of an eccentricity.]

1 comment:

abdul666 said...

Cheers!
An eccentricity? Not at all. Battles by proxy are to played with the proxy player's minis (or counters, or rice grains), rules and setting. No restriction to a given period, if the two sides 'proxy played' agreed beforehand.