Napoleon Series Archive 2015

Re: French infantry in 3 or in 2 ranks in 1813-181

Thomas,
It was an order for all the infantry of Napoleon's army in Germany:

Düben, 13 octobre 1813.
Au prince de Neuchâtel et de Wagram, major général de la Grande Armée, à Düben.
Mon Cousin, mettez à l'ordre de l'armée que l'Empereur ordonne qu'à dater d'aujourd'hui toute l'infanterie de l'armée se range en bataillons sur deux rangs au lieu de trois, Sa Majesté regardant le feu et les baïonnettes du troisième rang comme de nul effet. Lorsque les bataillons se rangent en colonnes serrées par division, la formation sur deux rangs offre six rangs et trois rangs de feu, ce qui est suffisant, et a de plus l'avantage de donner aux bataillons un tiers de plus de front. Cette formation a aussi cet avantage que la veille d'une bataille l'ennemi, n'en étant pas prévenu, évaluera l'armée qu'il a devant lui à des forces d'un tiers plus considérables qu'elles ne le sont.
Napoléon.

Correspondance de Napoléon Ier, t. 26, Paris, 1868, p. 352.

"à dater d'aujourd'hui toute l'infanterie de l'armée se range en bataillons sur deux rangs":
"since today all infantry of the army form themselves in battalions in two ranks".

General Chambray wrote that the French infantry fought in two ranks until the end of the war. He probably means the end of the 1814 campaign.

I also have doubts that the French infantry in Spain and in southern France was formed in 2 ranks in the end of 1813 and in 1814. I have no clear evidence, neither for this nor against this, that is why I ask the forum.

Best wishes,
Alexander

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French infantry in 3 or in 2 ranks in 1813-1814
Re: French infantry in 3 or in 2 ranks in 1813-181
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Reference
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*NM* Great stuff; thank you *NM*
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An Interesting Quotation...
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