Friday, May 10, 2013

Bittersweet victory

Gerri de la Sal, 7th December 1713

[On last weekend it was fought the first battle of this turn, by the gaming group of Lleida city, who so kindly have offered themselves before for other proxy battles.

[This time, they had volunteered for gaming the ambush of General Moragues' Mountain Fusiliers over a Walloon battalion lead by Marquis of Bus, in a remote Pyrenean valley half buried in snow.

[This is their battle report]

El capellà beneeix les tropes catalanes photo 20130506_164944_zpsbc0273b3.jpg
A priest blessing the Miquelets
Situaci photo 20130506_171147_zps222f7bf6.jpg
The trap about to close

Suddenly, the thunderous cracking of a musketry volley tore with violence the hitherto so calm, silent valley. That very first volley proved quite unsuccessful, as a matter of fact; but a lucky shot hit the officer leading the Walloon scouting vanguard, making his men to leave the road in disorder for some cover. Contrarily, the bulk of the battalion behind managed to keep order and formed a line to repel enemy fire.

L'emboscada s'inicia photo 20130506_172433_zps5344ea76.jpg
Starting volley
L'avantguarda borbònica baix el foc photo 20130506_172502_zpsffac80ec.jpg
First casualties
Els comandants borbònics posen ordre i es preparen per al contraatac. photo 20130506_174045_zps28e248ca.jpg
The Spanish rearguard forming a line
Les tropes es tiroteigen sense pietat... photo 20130506_175622_zps9ecab2a7.jpg
A furious exchange of musketry fire starts

After a pityless exchange of fire, another lucky shot hits the Spanish second-in-command, this making about one third of the battalion to flee. At the opposite side of battlefield though, things start going differently. Demoralized by the Walloons' steady fire, part of the Catalan Miquelets also fall back from their positions, so starting a ruthless retreat too. Trying to restore order in the deserting ranks, General Moragues is close to being swept away by his own men.

Fugida borbonica devant el foc a banda i banda... photo 20130506_180916_zps55e6fe34.jpg
Spanish rout
La fugida de part de les tropes catalanes... photo 20130506_180926_zpsdd8e7a47.jpg
Some Miquelets also rout

Taking advantage of the Catalan momentary loss of control, a second Walloon formation rapidly decides to withdraw in good order before the enemy leadership is restored --thus avoiding anihilation. Unable of doing so too, the Walloon foremost detachment choses to surrender.

In the end, the balance for the Catalan side is:
Starting force: 30
Casualties: 2
Routing: 9

And, for the Spanish side:
Starting force: 30
Casualties: 9
Captured/Disbanded: 15 --including the Spanish commander, Marquis of Bus
Successfully exiting the field: 6 --with no senior command

[And this weekend, an actually big battle, to be fought by ourselves. The mother of all battles, I'd say --well, some malicious propaganda actually, for demoralizing those damned stubborn Galateans, hehehe...]


Francis Lee said...

That was quite good and beautiful looking!

abdul666 said...

I was worried when I read just the title of your post on 'EvE': because of those important characters currently trying to cross the Pyrenees.

Soldadets said...

Jean-Louis, nothing planned in advance, I swear.

(But it's a quite interesting coincidence indeed)

Phil said...

Fantastic looking pictures, I do like them!!