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What’s the difference and purposes of certain units in the Age of Napoleon?  

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Squeaker11@hotmail.com
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27/02/2020 2:03 pm  

I am very new to the Napoleonic era. I’m very confused with what types of units are what and I have certain questions like what’s the difference between Line infantry and Fusiliers? 

What’s the difference between Jagers, Skirmishers, and light infantry and what are the roles of them in battle?

Also what is the difference between Hussars, Uhlans, Dragoon’s, Curiassiers, and Chasseurs and what are there roles.

And last but not least, what are Velites and Tirailleurs and there roles.

I understand what Grenadiers are but if anyone wants to shed more light on them and their roles then please do!

 

Thanks, Trace


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David
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27/02/2020 2:28 pm  

Hi Trace!

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

I am very new to the Napoleonic era.

Welcome!

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

I’m very confused with what types of units are what and I have certain questions

Totally understandable!

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

like what’s the difference between Line infantry and Fusiliers? 

So, for a really long time, troop types were named after either some characteristic of their training – or often some derivation of the weapons or equipment they used. Line infantry is the standard regular infantry of the period. In many nations, a line infantry Unit is composed of different sub-types, you might have grenadiers (heavy, shock infantry), voltigeurs (light infantry, skirmishers), along with fusiliers ("standard" rank and file). Generally speaking, fusiliers are considered "line" infantry and not "light" infantry. One exception is Prussia had light troops called füsiliers. Many nations also formed whole battalions of grenadiers as elite troops.

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

What’s the difference between Jagers, Skirmishers, and light infantry and what are the roles of them in battle?

Jägers are a type of light infantry (so are chasseurs à pied, schützen, and others). Light infantry are typically those who are trained to function more efficiently (than line infantry) in bad terrain and to effectively fight in open order (instead of always shoulder-to-shoulder). In some Armies – like the French – they are additionally used as shock troop.

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

Also what is the difference between Hussars, Uhlans, Dragoon’s, Curiassiers, and Chasseurs and what are there roles.

Hussars, uhlans (aka lancers), and chasseurs (technically chasseurs à cheval, i.e. mounted light cavalry) are all light cavalry, on campaign meant to move fast, scout, patrol, etc… once on the battlefield though they are often used just as any other cavalry. Chasseurs à cheval (and jägers zu pferd and others) are all equivalent, standard light cavalry. Hussars have a lot more pageantry and spiffy uniforms – though people love to debate if they were actually more elite than anyone else. Uhlans and lancers were light cavalry armed with lances (though there were others also armed with lances that went by different names).

Cuirassiers (and carabiniers à cheval, and others) are heavy cavalry, almost never used to scout or patrol during campaign, they are reserved for a shock role on the battlefield. They are often – but not always – armored, which is where the name 'cuirassier' comes from, their armor plate was called a 'cuirass'.

Dragoons were sorta a jack-of-all-trades of cavalry. Often used in light cavalry roles, sometimes used for garrison duties, anti-partisan work, on very rare occasion dismounted and used as infantry. On the battlefield they were commonly utilized in "heavy" cavalry rolls along side cuirassiers and the like.

Posted by: @squeaker11hotmail-com

And last but not least, what are Velites and Tirailleurs and there roles.

Tirailleurs are technically troops that are skirmishing, but the term is also used as the name of some of the junior Imperial Guard regiments in the French Army, aka the Young Guard.

Hope that gets you started!

-David


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Squeaker11@hotmail.com
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27/02/2020 6:09 pm  

@david

Thank you David so much! I just love how you do business! I just got the "We'll Meet in Vienna" in the post yesterday for my 21st. Love the hand written signature and the care that goes into your timely work. Thanks for doing all the research for me and everyone else. And you can thank the Youtuber Allen Smith that is in our wargaming community on there for getting me started with your products. Ill be making videos myself on your work and praising it. There's not enough of Et Sans Resultat! on Youtube. Thanks for clearing up these things and responding so fast and can't wait to receive my pre-ordered "Master of the World". Best wishes from Washington State. 


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David
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27/02/2020 7:44 pm  

That's very kind of you Trace, thank you. As to your questions in this thread – we do have some things in the works that may make life easier for you in this regard, so keep your eyes open!

-David


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Squeaker11@hotmail.com
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27/02/2020 11:22 pm  

@david

I do understand how flag variants and even the color of horses had a purpose for I think every nation. Could we see something like this in the future? I understand that takes many many hours of work and research. Or could you point me in the right direction to some good sources? I usually read up on it at http://napoleonistyka.atspace.com/index.html


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