The Austrian Army 1805-1809 Vol. 1 The Infantry (Soldiers & Weapons)

The Austrian Army 1805-1809 Vol. 1 The Infantry (Soldiers & Weapons)

  • Publish Date: 2018-09-29
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Author: Enrico Acerbi
Luca Cristini Editore
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Even when a History writer would have wanted to celebrate, maybe the greatest European power (on land), namely the Austrian Empire, he certainly would not had chosen the terrible year 1809. What for the military apparatus in Vienna could have been a beginning of a Great Military Reform, the triumph of the Generalissimus Archduke Charles, became one of the worst nightmares of Habsburg history. In short, after a series of unfortunate events and bad military conduct, Austria disappeared from the European scene, losing further important territories but, above all, losing its mighty armies. The author chooses to tell about that period, evaluating the military organization, starting from the recruitment, up to the details of the various units, because that army, was the largest army fielded by Austria before the Great War: man told about 600,000 men, including the Levies of regional volunteers, called Landwehr (in the territories of the Austrian Crown) and Insurrectio (in the territories of the Crown of St. Stephen). Financial hardship had indicated that the increase in the new military Force had to be conducted in a more inexpensive way. The Generalissimus had found the solution with the creation of the Landwehr, in which, in wartime, we could recruit large masses of Wehrfahigen men (suitable for Duty), without having to sustain substantial expenses during the peacetime. In the first month of this year the field units of the army counted 321.469 men with 36.560 sabres, where Fuhrwesen (Train), garrison artillery, Border Cordon troops and Marines (Marineinfanterie) were not included (a total of 21.320 men and 9.461 horses). For the supplement of the war force and the formation of replacements were available: - The first reserve of the German infantry units: 59.800 men - The second reserve of the German infantry units: 73.600 men. For the defence of the inner lands of the monarchy, first acted the Depots of the field regiments, were possible, with an average strength, according to the new system, calculated in 54.000 men and 5.000 horses. In a second time had to act the new-established Landwehr, around 152.219 men, as soon as it would have been better organized. The Hungarian Insurrectio started with 50.000 men and 20.000 horses, while the new formations, mobilized in the Military Border, would have been 44.303 men and 171 horses strong. So Austria entered into war with the most powerful military force of the whole Napoleonic Period (in numbers of fighters), an effort which hardly seemed possible and which surprised the world. Unfortunately its three armies (and the Landwehr) did not surprised Bonaparte, who kicked off Austria from the battlefields till 1813.

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