Napoleon Series Archive 2009

Re: Russian unicorns
In Response To: Re: Russian unicorns ()

Dear Hans Karl.

Further to your interesting posting, I recalled a passage in the book, Zorndorf: Fredrick Faces Holy Mother Russia, By Simon Millar, Adam Hook P21 specific to the Russian military condition. It may be noted that the time period was 1755 -60, as you well know military doctrine and training at the noted time took time to season like good wine. As this was going on, the younger officers are of course, developing in their craft. It is apparent from the outcome of this noted war, that if one would have asked a Prussian officer if the Russian soldiers and officers in general, and the Russian artillery in specific was a worthy opponent, I would expect a unequivocal affirmation.

"The artillery was the best trained and equipped in Europe. Shuvalov, the Grand Master of Artillery, was the foremost exponent of artillery and military engineering of the time. He was a firm believer that officers of these branches should receive a scientific education. Schools were established with an instructional emphasis on mathemathics. The field artillery was formed inot brigades of 20 cannon. A heavy regiment was formed of 26 cannon under the titleof Corps of Bombardiers. In all there were 233 cannon in 5 different calibers. Shuvalov was a great reformer and introduced the famous “Shuvalov” howitzer known as eh ‘Unicorn” It fired solid shot, case and explosive and incendiary shell. It was far more accurate and had a greater range than the conventional artillery which made it a lethal weapon on the battlefields against Prussia. The artillery regulations of 1759 had a wealth of new ideas concentrating on ammunition replenishment in the field, indirect fire and movement and most importantly they told the gunner that their first duty was to act to the profit of the infantry and calvary.”

This may be an example of early strategic thinking in combined operations within the Russian Military. It is obviously professional thinking and not something taken out of a stuff box tucked behind a fine silk sash.

Best regards,

Genevieve .

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L 'Armee Russe sous le Tsar Alexandre I 1805-15.
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Very nice - thank you :-)
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Very kind - thank you :-) *NM*
Shako
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