Saturday, 9 March 2019

A Dappol Grapple

My good friend, JC, came over for another whirl in my Hintonian time machine early in the New Year. Cherishing memories of the trouncing he gave me in the summer of '69, he wanted to see if he could repeat the experience by thrashing me for a second time. The tables, however, had been turned. It would be an outnumbered Coalition force, this time, attempting to hold ground against the might of the French Empire.

Stepping out of the time machine into another bright Sunday morning in that fateful year, we found the situation to be as follows:

It is early morning, and Major-General Wilhelm Daniel von Arentschildt, in temporary command of Wallmoden's Corps, has been ordered to hold the village of Dappol at all costs until the Prussian army can march to his aid. For several hours they are all that stand between Napoleon and the Prussian capital, Berlin.

Once upon a time, in the little village of Dappol…..

General Alten and his famous Bremen Battalion, the conquerors of the Imperial Guard, occupied the houses with a thin screen of Prussian riflemen in front of them to warn of the enemy's approach.


Alten: Prussia be damned. We're here for Hanover and King George!

General Lyon and the 73rd,  newly arrived from England, took to the open fields on the left flank...


Lyon: This is where we draw the line, chaps!

…while General Pirch and the Russo-Germans held the right.


Pirch: Ze last mann standing vill counterattack!

Between them were the Lützowers, garrisoning the church. Arentschildt calculated that the interlocking fire of his four battalions would destroy any Frenchmen daring to approach.

Lützow: Praise ze Lord, Lützowers, und pass ze ammunition!
Arentschildt's wild card was the Estorff Hussars. Dörnberg's Dandies steeled themselves to sell their lives dearly, although a few also pointed out that as it was Sunday they really shouldn't be trading at all, and perhaps, you know, they should come back during the week.....




Dörnberg: I'd like to say it's death or glory, boys, but I zink ve're going to get a bit of both.

As the horses stamped and chafed in the early morning mist, the church bells rang, calling the faithful to prayer. At that very moment the fog dispersed to reveal a mighty French host arrayed in front of the village. A reinforced infantry division, supported by the Imperial Guard, massed in front....


Napoleon: Ta daaaa!!

 …..while another huge column prepared to sweep around the open eastern flank.


Murat (to the 7th Vistulas): Ha Ha Ha! We can't lose this time!

The French, in their Sunday best, had also come to hear the Lesson.


Davout: Just a little morning stroll, mes enfants, and then it's dinner with a Berliner!

and also, perhaps, to dispense few lessons of their own.

De Beauharnais: What, no Leib Hussars? Where's the fun in that?

With a wave of an Imperial arm, the Emperor signalled the army to advance.


Napoleon: What are we waiting for, Marbot? Tell them to get a move on!
A lone French battery on a hill opened the battle with a crashing volley against the village.


Gunners: A little something for the donation box!
With trumpets blaring and cymbals crashing, the French army lurched into motion.

French Army: Vive L'Empereur!
To be continued.....

WM

26 comments :

  1. What did Wallmoden's corps do to deserve that? I await the second part of the action of the Berlin Speed-bump with a sense of dread... Hang on! How far away did you say those Prussians were? What's the time scale; several turns an hour; or, several hours a turn?

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    1. By being nice and shiny, Rob!

      The timescales were whatever the umpire, Wellington Lad II, judged to be aesthetically pleasing, interesting and dramatic and most likely to annoy his dad.

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    2. Sheer joy. I can hear Lutzow even now. “Meine Herren, it has been an honour to share the black enamel wth you.” Whether he will also say “unfortunately, this officer seems to know what he is doing” remains to be seen. Wo Stephen die Leib Husaren? Can’t wait....

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    3. As you say, Archduke, they've got God on their side, or at least held hostage.

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  2. Love it Matthew! Great to see so many of your troops in one post.

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    1. I will definitely need to paint the other half of my ping pong table if I do any more, Ian. It's becoming a bit of a squeeze.

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  3. Oh ! all that lovely O.S. shinnyness !

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  4. Excellent, look forward to seeing the outcome, not sure Wallmoden's corps will survive.

    Paul

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    1. It's not as bad as it looks, Paul. Under Stryker's M&M rules it's extremely difficult to evict one's enemies from buildings!

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  5. Excellent! The house is definately dapol but the church and the windmill? Also Dapol ?

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  6. ..."thinks"...er? the Post´s Titel..they are obviously all dapol...doh me! :-)

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    1. They are Paul, although nee Airfix, I believe.

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  7. Just Lovely.

    As he waved his hat to single the advance Napoleon extolled his army.

    'Mes soldats. Aujourd'hui c'est Berlin ou Buste. Cette fois nous allons le brûler au sol.'

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  8. That’s what the official communique claimed, anyway!

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  9. It is almost sad to shoot at those lovely French uniforms. Almost.


    I have every faith in the redcoats and their Teutonic chums!

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    1. The liberty of all Germany depends on it, Matt!

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  10. Ha ha I hope you don't make us wait long for the finale! The figures look wonderful BTW.

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    1. Writing up these battle reports is surprisingly time consuming, Dave (which distresses me - I could be painting more soldiers), but I won't keep you waiting too long, I promise.

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  11. Magnificent sir...
    I’m not sure I can take sides in this one... ;-)

    All the best. Aly

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  12. Cheers Aly
    I generally maintain a neutral stance too, except when I'm playing JC....

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  13. You're killing me with all of these wonderful posts and impressive displays! I must speed up my painting!

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  14. You couldn't possibly take as long as I did in getting this far, Dave!

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    1. Love that you painted a ping pong table for your board. I have one sitting in the basement unused....

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  15. Superb display of martial might. Imagine facing that imposing French military machine from the perspective of the coalition forces.

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    1. I decided I'd rather not, CN, which is why JC got that gig.

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