Friday, March 20, 2009

Last Stand of the Old Guard Waterloo 1815


Andres 54mm kit modeled and painted by Mike Cramer, a work in progress 2 months thus far. Assembly required that was an understatement over a month of fitting and gluing little tiny parts. Lots of satisfaction when it came together.Painting over a month still lots to do. Have at add the horse yet. Will post the pictures as the piece progress's. Horse added nowhave to add grass and foliage.

Waterloo 1815

By 10:pm of 18 June, 1815, Napoleon's star had finally slipped below the horizon while the moon rose over one of the most terrifying scenes of the Napoleonic Wars. The Anglo- Allied forces had lost 15,000 men, the Prussians 7,000, and the French between 25,000 and 30,000 as a result of the most famous military encounter of the 19th century: The battle of Waterloo.

The Grenadiers of the Imperial Guard are shrouded in a mystique of unsurpassed loyalty and bravery they were the elite of the elite French soldiers the "Old Guard" .They are certainly some of the most famous soldiers of the Napoleonic Wars. There were four regiments of Grenadiers at Waterloo. The 1st Grenadiers, under General Petit, were the elite of the French Army and one thousand strong. The 2nd Grenadiers just over one thousand men, commanded by Baron Christiani. The 3rd Grenadiers were even stronger, and commanded by Poret Moran. The 4th Grenadiers under General Harlet, numbered only 500.

Men died where they stood rather than retreat, and the 4th Regiment was almost annihilated. The 2nd Battalion of the 3rd Grenadiers stood its ground in square formation,repelling attack after attack, until British Artillery was brought in and fired at point-blank range at the square, which collapsed. The survivors formed triangle, not ceding an inch nor allowing a moment of respite to the Allied onslaught. Finely reduced from 500 to 150, those still alive refused to surrender and preferred to meet their end upon the cold steel sabers of the surrounding Allied Army.

General Cambrone's famous statement " La Garde meurt ne se rendent pas" ( The Guard dies but does not surrender) was really quite appropriate for many of the old soldiers who vanished in the gloom of that evening.

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