Saturday, 12 June 2010

Passau Campaign Update

Austrian infantry rout from Salzburg

After three battles the Austrians were poised to move on Munich. The Bavarians had been forced to retreat in order to concentrate their army. To main control of the Tyrol they had been forced to leave one corps in an isolated position at Salzburg.

Archduke Charles concentrated three of his corps for the push on Munich, and ordered the fourth corps to pin the garrison of Salzburg and offer assistance to the insurgents.

General Klenau took advantage of his isolated command to launch an all out attack on Salzburg. Unable to force the bridge at Salzburg he left his artillery to bombard the city, and moved his infantry and cavalry south to cross the river Salach and attack the city from the south.

Despite an initial success he was unable to take the city. As night fell he was forced to retire into the mountains south of the city, cutting his links with the remainder of the Austrian army and abandoning his artillery.

It would take at least ten days to rally the shattered Austrian corps, cross the river Salach and march north to rejoin the remainder of the army at Branau.

The Bavarian corps at Salzburg was within five days march of Branau.

Archduke Charles now had to take a difficult decision. Should he abandon his march on Munich and withdraw his army to Linz to await the arrival of Kelnau and his battered corps. Or should he push on for Munich and hope to defeat Marshal Oudinot before the garrison of Salzburg could march against his left flank.

He decided to push on and attack Oudinot at Reishach. Victory would give him Munich, defeat might mean the destruction of his entire army.

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