Your comments on this thread are thought provoking.
And I would continue your statement to include ‘heavier caliber and greater range in the artillery used at smaller formation levels if possible. If you step this forward into WWII, you will see the continuity in philosophy with the chosen size of mortars, tube artillery and frogs. Think of this, if you have the manpower (infantry) to change out at least the portions of the individual gun crews doing the heavy lifting (as in dragging projectile, power, moving the gun carriage and just packing ammunitions et al) and you can spell them out in shifts, and leave the gunner and gun layers alone, then you can sustain your firing for greater periods. Just as an aside, the infantryman does not have to be classically literate. Also If you have, as the Russians had in 1805, wagon loads of ammunitions with ammunition handlers (infantry) coming up to support the Russian guns or in 1943, Studebaker trucks with rocket rails, mounting 132 mm rockets and in a gun line with 122 & 152 mm howitzers , then what may seem crude to some begins to have a certain cerebral cunning to it. The point is that these were supported by portions of spare crews, and protected and fed by masses of infantry. They would run a divisional shoot like a three shift factory. The Russians heavily crewing their guns, particularly in the logistics line and the grunt work, and they were doing it deliberately.Genevieve: Excuse me for interjecting into the conversation, but it is a intriguing insight, the Russians having a long-standing preference for large amounts of ordinance.
So the doctrine is really something that begins about 1750 or before and is still seen in WWII?
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, in my opinion, 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 into 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 cavlry.”
However, 'incoming is incoming' is not quite realistic. Fire from three hundred or so Napoleonic cannon is not 'the same' as an equal number of WWII artillery in either deployment or effect. But certainly, the Russian WWII adage that there is "A unique quality to large quantities' does hold.
Of course you are quite right, you cannot compare a muzzle loaded round shot to HE or specialty rounds with inherently sophisticated fusing. Nor could you compare good old American “ball and buck “ in 1812 to good old British .75…..but dead is dead so incoming is always a call to prayers…
So, you do feel that the basic rationale for the Russian's predilection for large numbers of guns was to make up for a perceived inferiority in quality? Have you seen this stated anywhere?
My comment was in the context of a given day and not as a general statement.
(It might be noted, there is a continuity of professional artillery training from 1698 to present at the Mikhailovskaya Artillery Military Academy in Saint Petersburg dates back to 1698. In 1953 it was called the Kalinin Artillery Military Academy. )