Sunday 19 March 2023

Merida Campaign – Battle of Calamonte


Start of game

15th French army have orders to attack Calamonte

Three infantry brigades are detached

They have casualties to six brigades

The whole army arrives at the start of move 1


3rd Spanish army have orders to defend Calamonte

The whole army is present, with two infantry brigades in the town

They have casualties to five brigades

The whole army is deployed on the table at the start of the game


15th French Army – 9 infantry brigades, 3 cavalry brigade, 3 corps artillery

3rd Spanish Army – 12 infantry brigades, 1 cavalry brigade, 3 corps artillery


End of move 12

On the left the Italian corps is broken and retreat

9th Spanish corps also suffer heavy casualties

But two brigades move to support the town


The CinC leads the main attack in the centre

They force 7th Spanish corps to retreat

But arrive at the town too late to take it


On the right the Westphalian corps rout 8th Spanish corps

But it takes too long and they do not reach the town before nightfall


At nightfall the Spanish hold the town and have concentrated their whole army there


The French have lost 5 infantry and 5 cavalry casualties (2500 men)

The Spanish have lost 9 infantry, 3 cavalry and 2 artillery casualties (4100 men)

The Spanish have 8 brigades in rout, the French have 5 brigades.



This was the hardest fought battle of the campaign so far

The Spanish fought hard, and only retreated when forced to do so


The Italians attacked the farm on the left

They suffered heavy casualties and retreated in rout

Only the corps artillery survived

As soon as they retreated the two remaining Spanish brigades joined the garrison


In the centre the Spanish beat off the cavalry attack on their guns

The infantry then withdrew slowly to the town

The French were in position to attack by the end of move 9

But their artillery failed to shake the garrison

Spanish reinforcements from the flanks soon outnumbered the attackers


On the right the Westphalians had more success

Their cavalry also suffered heavy casualties (30%)

This allowed the infantry and artillery to delay the Westphalian attack

At nightfall they were still fighting


Once more the French have failed to achieve a convincing victory

The Spanish have suffered more casualties

However the French have lost all three cavalry brigades

This has allowed all three Spanish corps to concentrate in and around the town

At the best, the French can claim a draw.


It may well be that this is how the Spanish will win the campaign, now and in future

The campaign objective is for the French to take the main Spanish city

If allowed to fight more battles of attrition they would probably win

However the campaign rules require the French to occupy the objective

If they have not done so within six days they must retreat

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