Posted by Martin on March 20, 2010
Prussia can’t claim the credit for the innovaton of “flying” horse artillery (that honour goes to Russia) but it was Fredrick The Great’s Prussian army that demonstrated the true worth of this arm during the Seven Years War. So much so that other nations were quick to follow and by the Napoleonic Wars horse artillery was well established.
By 1813, the Prussian army had set up reserve cavalry elements attached to each corps. Each such cavalry force was provided with horse artillery batteries. In the case of Bulow’s III Corps, there were three cavalry brigades supported by two horse artillery batteries. My long term plans include modelling one of the cavalry brigades with one horse artillery battery. So, just because I fancied a change, I’ve embarked on the first steps for my horse artillery battery.
So far, I’ve just primed a gun crew black (along with a gratuitous casualty figure and done most of the face-painting work. These Calpe figures model the horse artillery in campaign dress which was typified by the wearing of a dark blue litewka and grey cavalry overalls. The litewka has a black collar with red piping along the bottom and front edges (not the top edge) and probably red piping round the cuff. In 1813, shoulder straps were different colours for each of the three horse artillery brigades – scarlet for the Brandenburg brigade, white for the Prussian brigade and yellow for the Silesian brigade (in 1814 all three brigades changed to scarlet shoulder straps). I’m modelling battery number five, which was in the Brandenburg brigade so painting the shouder straps scarlet will handily make this battery correct for the whole 1813-15 period.
So wielding the red shades is the next job for me.