Battle of Malplaquet

Battle_of_Malplaquet,_1709Just when I was settling into decisions for next years projects it occurred to me that today, 11 September 2013 is the 304th anniversary of the Pyrrhic victory at the Battle of Malplaquet fought between England, Austria, Prussia and the Low Countries on one side and France and Bavaria on the other. It was a battle that was famous for the commanders, John Churchill of the English (the Duke of Marlborough) and Prince Eugene of Savoy on the one side and Claude de Villars and Louis Boufflers on the other. Overall there were 86,000 in the armies of the Grand Alliance with 100 guns and and 75,000 and 80 guns on Bourbon side.

The Army of the Grand Alliance found itself at Malplaquet near the modern Belgian/French border. In the morning of 11 September 1709 at 9.00am the Austrians attacked with the support of Prussian and Danish troops. These were commanded by Count Albrecht Konrad Finck von Finckenstein. They pushed back the French left wing into the forest behind them. On the French right wing the Dutch under the command of the Prince of Orange, John William Friso, attacked to distract the French and prevent them from coming to Villars’ aid.

Later a decisive final attack was made on the weakened French centre by British infantry under the command of the Earl of Orkney. This attack occupied the the French redans. Allied cavalry was then able to advance through this line and engage the French cavalry behind. By this stage, de Villars was off the field having been wounded earlier so Boufflers was in command. Boufflers was leading the Maison du Roi and six times drive the Allied cavalry back before finally deciding the battle was lost and surrendering the field.

The victory for the Grand Alliance had come at some cost however with 21,000 casualties from within the alliance compared to 11,000 casualties on the French and Bavarian side.

Now I am torn again between the War of Spanish Succession and the Great Northern War. Of course, I could just do this as Imagi-nations. Oh yes, and I am still planning something with the Thirty Years War.

8 thoughts on “Battle of Malplaquet

  1. Doug 12 September 2013 / 5:55 am

    I do have 6mm British for WSS, based for Polemos, (but they would work for Maurice or pretty much any other set.)


      • Doug 16 September 2013 / 1:28 am

        Why resist? I cleaned out the Gimp room today – so the painting schedule can be better organised… I even realised it isn’t so overwhelming.. much.


      • thomo the lost 17 September 2013 / 12:21 pm

        I’m slowly working through the part-painted items in the man cave – thought I would clean the slate for the next projects first.

        Still, tempted to buy some more ships 🙂

        Er, and GNW, WSS, 7YW not to mention some Nappies, more ancients, 30YW … argh, the list goes on!


  2. Whisperin' Al 15 September 2013 / 4:38 pm

    Why choose – why not do both?! I ended up plumping for WSS myself largely as I more inspiration but I think GNW has plenty to recommend it.


    • thomo the lost 17 September 2013 / 12:22 pm

      I probably will end up doing both – but first things first. Maybe the Great Northern War first as it is an old favourite of mine.


      • Whisperin' Al 20 September 2013 / 1:58 am

        I don’t know as much about the GNW as I should but I’m off to Blenheim Palace in a couple of weeks so that will get me going again on my WSS project.


      • thomo the lost 20 September 2013 / 8:10 am

        That is one thing I miss about not living in England any more – the ability to get up on Saturday morning and by driving for about one hour arrive at any of 100 museums, galleries, stately houses and the like.

        Enjoy Blenheim


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