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Oct 12 10 5:22 PM

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What's an appropriate overall figure strength at Gdb scale for the Jena-Auerstadt Prussians? 32 figs? 40 figs? Peter Hofschroer in his Miniature Wargames articles gave Prussian and Musketeer battalion field strengths at over 800 men (40 figs) (I think Fusilier battalions also) but is this overstated? Would love input on realistic strengths as well as how board members with 1806 Prusso-Saxons are organizing their miniature armies. Rudorff please weigh in!
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Posts: 1,141

#1 [url]

Oct 12 10 6:22 PM

Hi Chris,

Most of what you are looking for is buried away in previous posts here, this is as good a place to start with as any

RMD is the man who did all the hard work, but my thoughts are that 32 figures per battalion is a pretty good size to work on. PH is quite correct that the battalions should have been about 800 men, on paper. Most of the strengths I've seen in various books are based on the number of men in the "line" companies, and are about the 600 men mark, which is where the common suggestion of 30 figures comes from; plus the idea that the 5 company organisation best done by 5 bases, rather than the 8 platoons that they seemed to have actually fought in. You have to add in the Officers, NCOs and musicians, then the Schutzen, and the 40-60 men per company that were semi-retired reservists who should have been called up in the event of mobilisation, that is where the 800 men figure comes from. Given that the Army was mobilised, and home based (or in friendly territory) and hadn't undergone any extended marches, and that the actual campaign up to the twin battles was short then there really shouldn't have been much in the way of serious attrition (imo of course).

By having 32 figures ( 4x8 ), plus 2 schutzen and a battalion gun per battalion (2 gunner figures and an Austrian 3pdr model on as small a base as will accomodate them is a good way of representing this) then you are sitting about 36 figures, so representing around 740 men. I'd be happy that is as good a way of representing the battalion as any.

The actual historical brigade organisation gives (imo) a rather decently balanced formation for the table top. Almost all the line brigades were organised exactly the same i.e. 2 line regimants; a grenadier battalion (usually not from the line regiments in the same brigade) and a 12lb foot battery. That gives you 5 battalions, 10 rifle armed skirmishers and a foot battery. Two of them gives you a division, chuck in some cavalry and a Light Brigade and you are sorted. Here as an example is Orange's Divison from the Main Army

1. Division des rechten Flgels
Gen. Lt. Prinz von Oranien
Hauptmann von Schler

1. Brigade
Grenadierbataillon `Knebel
I. und II. Bataillon `Mllendorf
I. und II. Bataillon `Wartensleben
12-Pfnder-Batterie `Lehmann
Oberst von Ltzow

2. Brigade
Grenadierbataillon `Rheinbaben
I. und II. Bataillon `vacant Puttkamer
I. und II. Bataillon `Prinz Ferdinand
12-Pfnder-Batterie `Riemer
Oberst von Schimonski

Leib-Krassiere (5 Schwadronen)
Leib-Karabiniers (5 Schwadronen)
Reitende Batterie `Willmann
Oberstlt. Prinz Wilhelm

Leichte Truppen
Fsilierbataillon `Oswald
1. Bataillon `Wrttemberg-Husaren (5 Schwadronen)
Gen. Maj. von Oswald

The full oob is contained in RMD's posts in the link above, but here are some useful links from other places -

Cheers, Gary

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#3 [url]

Oct 16 15 8:04 AM

5 company basing

Apologies for digging up this old thread. I've just ordered the GdB rule book when it turned out that there are at least two other GdB players here in the Amsterdam area. Currently, my humble start of a Prussian 1806 army is based for Volley & Bayonet, but I've decided that armies at the grand-tactical scale are best done in 6mm.
I've read a lot about the 1806 campaign, and have decided to go for battalions of 5 companies. I know that Prussians are mostly based 4x8, but I'd like to give more period feel to them. I've seen that battalion strength was about 700 in practice, which would mean 5x7 figures. I assume that this would be impractical. Is 5x6 the way to go then?
I bought AB Prussians when they came out in the late 90's, but most are still on the unpainted lead mountain. I want to see whether I have enough to paint a division.

Thank you,

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Posts: 1,141

#4 [url]

Oct 16 15 10:50 AM

Basing them as 5x6 will work just fine, and by adding in the battalion gun and 2 schutzen per battalion you are as close to 700 as makes no difference.

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#5 [url]

Oct 18 15 10:40 PM

The actual historical strength returns
2 days before Jena-Auerstadt show that almost all Prussian infantry battalions had between 600 - 650 men present for duty. That would make your 32 figure units correct. The musketeers in the reserve corps listed around 750 men so they could be 40.

The cavalry was also huge with all being between 800 - 920 men strong.

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#6 [url]

Nov 11 15 3:57 AM

If you can, try to buy Scenario book Volume 3 and read the 12 notes on page 32 for the Auerstadt scenario.  Most of these notes (rules, actually) are designed to more accurately characterize the Prussian infantry of 1806, including the battalion guns and the schutzen.

- Chris Salander

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#7 [url]

Nov 11 15 3:37 PM

Thank you all for your advice. I got a hold of Wargames Illustrated #158, which has the original Auerstädt scenario including notes. I like the additional notes, it adds even more flavour to the Prussians. It recommends to treat regimental guns as four extra figures instead of as artillery. However, I will paint the Tauentzien Korps which often combined the regimental guns to form a battery of six to eight 4/6 pdr guns. The Korps did this at both Schleiz and Jena.

The use of Schützen is also interesting, as often the reserve troops (additional 40 overstrength troops) and sometimes the third rank were drawn into the skirmish screen too. I guess that in game terms, I could use my fifth company base to act as third ranker skirmishers? The reserve troops would probably be just another 2 Schützen models, although with musket instead of rifle. I have read that third rankers were used at least twice at Jena, by the Saxon Sanitz Brigade and by the Prussian Zweiffel regiment (Part of Tauentzien's Korps).;id=65173


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