Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Battle of Colbitz - 7 May 1813


7 May 1813 - Battle of Colbitz

Blucher wanted to secure a second bridge head north of Magdeburg, as he intended his main attack to be in the north. 3rd corps crossed the river and occupied the town.

Davout was determined to regain the initiative and ordered 6th corps to retake the town.


The table consists of squares G1, G2, G3, H1, H2, H3, I1, I2, I3
The town of Colbitz (centre of photograph) is the objective

Prussians (Paul) are deployed either side of Colbitz

French (Jan) will enter from left


The French approach in three columns. On their left two infantry brigades. in the centre two more infantry brigades either side of their artillery. On their right a cavalry brigade on the high ground.

The Prussians form square to protect the guns, and the cavalry tmove forward to support the square. The guns are directed to fire on the right hand enemy infantry column. The remaining infantry will hold their position awaiting developments.

The guns inflict heavy casualties on the enemy infantry columns who halt shaken before they reach the gun line. The enemy cuirassiers charge the guns, but are held at bay by the square. As they hesitate, the hussars counter charge them. The enemy cavalry break and rout, taking the nearest infantry brigade with them.

The remaining French infantry brigade in the centre immediately form square, to cover the retreat of their comrades. The hussars halt to pin the square, whilst the supporting infantry advance to crush them.

The two left hand French infantry brigades now advance against the 9th infantry brigade. This is the best Prussian brigade, and well able to hold their own in either a skirmish or a fire fight. 10th infantry brigade forward to the crest of the hill to support them. The French are unable to advance in the face of such effective fire power. After a brief firefight they are shaken and then routed.

With the enemy retreating in great disorder the Prussians advance to complete the enemy rout. One infantry brigade remain to hold the town and protect the guns.


The battle has been a decisive victory for the Prussians.
The French will retreat and will take at least two days to recover.