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Osprey Men-at-Arms 54 : Napoleon's Artillery

Napoleon's artillery was based on that existing at the end of the Royalist regime. This had been designed by the great master of artillery, Jean Baptiste de Gribeauval as far back as 1768 and consisted of some of the best designed pieces in Europe. Napoleon himself added little to the already excellent designs. Instead of technical improvement Napoleon's contribution rather lay in his tactical method of utilising artillery: instead of treating it as a separate, or even auxiliary, arm on the battlefield Napoleon realised that the different strengths and weaknesses of infantry and artillery complemented each other. Whilst other European powers clung to the time-honoured fighting technics of Frederick the Great, the French used an early form of combined arms doctrine, and as a result soundly defeated their enemies. Prussia and Austria succumbed to French might on the battlefield in 1792 and in 1793 the coalition of Austria, Prussia, Spain, Sardinia, Holland and Great Britain were defeated by Napoleon. Robert Wilkinson-Latham examines the equipment and performance of Napoleon's artillery in the Revolutionary Wars, Napoleonic Wars and the Waterloo Campaign accompanied by illustrations by Michael Roffe. Organisation and equipment are studied closely, including the key French failure to develop 'Shrapnel' or 'spherical case shot'; a weapon used against them to great effect by the British.

    Contents
  • Introduction
  • Artillery Equipment
  • Organisation of the Imperial Artillery 1804-1815
  • Napoleon's Allies
  • Artillery in the Revolutionary Wars 1792-1804
  • The Napoleonic Wars 1804-1815
  • Waterloo Campaign 1815
  • The Plates

 

Osprey Men-at-Arms


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