Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Austrian Army Organization

I have been adding more units to my Austrian Army for my Minden Miniatures Project so as to bring both sides (Austrians and Prussians) into balance. When I started this project, I painted nothing but Prussians because, well, I like the Prussians better. I also find that painting things white can get a bit boring. Hence, I am not a great fan of painting Austrians. On the other hand, you cannot have a SYW game with out some opposition.

My Austrian infantry is basically organized along facing color lines. I currently have three infantry regiments, each with two battalions of 30 figures, and each of a different facing color. For example, there is the MacGuire Regt. with red lapels, the Botta Regt. with dark blue lapels, and the Hungarian Josef Esterhazy Regt which, being Hungarian, looks completely different than anything else. Eventually, I will add a green regiment (probably Wied) and a rose/pink regiment (de Ligne) to the army. That would be five regiments with a total of ten battalions of line infantry.

Each battalion also has a stand of grenadiers. So a two-battalion regiment contributes two stands of grenadiers to the army. A converged grenadier battalion will then have four stands of grenadiers (2 from 2 different regiments). This will yield two more battalions of grenadiers plus two extra stands. I could split the two extra grenadier stands, adding them to the existing four stand grenadier battalions, thereby increasing them to five stands (or 30 figures), putting them at the same strength as a line infanatry battalion.

So that gets my Austrian army up to 12 battalions of infantry (8 line battalions and two grenadier battalions). To that I will add a couple battalions of Croat light infantry, bringing the establishment up to 14 battalions. There is one little problem with this: I like things nice and symetrical and I want each command to have 4 battalions. So I will need two more battalions to bring the total up to 16 battalions. This is a nice number that is easily divisible by 4. The solution might be to add another Hungarian regiment, maybe in blue trousers and then brigade the two grenadier battalions with the two Croat battalions.

We end up with something like this:

1st Brigade: Botta (blue) and MacGuire (red) regiments = 4 btns

2nd Brigade: Wied (green) and de Ligne (rose) regiments = 4 btns

3rd Brigade: Josef Esterhazy (red trousers) and Gyulai (blue trousers) = 4 btns

4th Brigade: Ottocaner (red) and Oguliner (blue) Croats + 2 converged grenadier btns = 4 btns

I would imagine that each brigade would have a couple of 3-pound battalion guns and a battery of field artillery consisting of one 6-pound and one 12-pound cannon.

Austrian battery attached to a brigade of infantry. The cannon are from Berlin Zinfiguren, the gun crew are Minden Austrians, and the helpers in waistcoats at the rear are the generic Pioneers that Minden makes. You can paint the Pioneers as either Prussians (straw color) or Austrians (grey brown) .

I don't have much in the way of cavalry for my Austrians. I envision a cavalry brigade consisting of two cuirassier regiments (32 figures) and one dragoon regiment (32 figures). I might also add a regiment of hussars, but these were not employed on the main battlefield by the Austrians, so I either won't have hussars or will attach them to the Croat contingent.

New Minden Austrian Senior Command Figures

There was a nice piece of timely news announced by Frank Hammond on his Minden Miniatures blog, i.e. the addition of six new Austrian generals and staff officers to the range. Click on the link below to see these wonderful works of art:

Here are a couple pictures of Prince Charles of Lorraine and some of the Austrian staff officers on foot. The vignette possibilities will be endless with these fine figures. Do click on the link above to see the rest of the new greens that Frank announced today.

Prince Charles of Lorraine - New Minden Austrian Command

Austrian Staff Officers Greens - new Minden figures

I don't have any senior Austrian command stands as of yet, primarily because I knew that these new Minden beauties were in the pipeline. The wait is well worth it.


  1. Guten Abend Herr Alte,

    Reading this post reminded me of when you edited the Journal of the SYWA, and wrote so much about your various army projects. Those were among the many items that got me hooked on the SYW.


    Ed v. H-F

  2. Hi

    Lovely figs as always, am quite jealous.......

    What base size are you using for the 6 fig minden bases?