Tuesday, June 25, 2019

French Hussars Painted

French Bercheny Hussars - Minden Miniatures

I've been working on a unit of the French Bercheny Hussars lately. I painted the command set and the Hussar set so that I could take pictures and put them in the product codes in the web store. This is part of my ongoing project of having pictures of painted figures for every product code in the catalog.

French Hussar Command (MFC-005) Trumpeter and Officer.
French Hussars (MFC-006) come in two different poses.

Since this gave me a head start of four figures for a squadron of Hussars, I decided to build it up to 12 figures. I have six figures painted so far and have six more to go.

One idea that I'm mulling over is to put light cavalry onto round bases rather than square bases. I haven't gone all in yet, but I do like the look of the round bases.

Should I put light cavalry on round bases to indicate that they are not "battlefield cavalry"?

Here is how the hussars line up against another squadron when both are mounted
on 2-inch square bases. A minor amount of overlap that is not readily apparent.

This picture indicates that my round bases have a slight overlap of approximately 0ne-quarter inch.

The French hussar squadron on round bases.
I think that the overlapping bases situation when matching up round bases to square bases can be handled by just indicating that the same number of figures in the front line of the melee get to participate in that melee. This, as opposed to only allowing those figures in face to face contact fighting in the melee.

The round base idea is something that I am still mulling over. I like the look for light cavalry because it distinguishes them from the heavier battlefield cavalry of cuirassiers and dragoons. However, the Prussian hussars were trained to be battlefield cavalry so what do I do with the Prussian hussars. Where Austrian and Russian cavalry trained in the same manner? I seem to recall that the Russian Horvath Hussars played an important role in the Battle of Zorndorf in 1758.

Maybe I will just base the Bercheny Hussars on the round bases to see how the concept looks. I certainly don't want to have go back and rebase ALL of my SYW light cavalry.

What do you think? Please leave some comments with your thoughts and help me out with this idea.


  1. Hello Altefritz, I would say you have two options. Keep the round bases as they are because, as you note, you still have six men V six men. Denote the formation ie battlefield cavalry by having the round bases touch each other. Should they skirmish they should be separated by a quarter of an inch, say. The second option might be a rectangular movement tray for when they are battlefield cavalry.

  2. One of my favourite regiments Jim and really well turned out. I only use round bases for vignettes etc but they do look nice on the proposed bases. You could of course consider using irregular cavalry bases, ie the ones with jagged edges to make them look less regular. Or you could use inset bases when you need the hussars to look more regular.

  3. Hi Jim,
    I like the idea of round bases for charging hussars. I don't think the over lapping matters, as you say it's x amount of men in the front rank for melee purposes. When moving across the table it'll just be a slightly less perfectly straight frontage, but then horses don't really understand drill, even if their riders do! I think your idea to do one unit is good; paly a small game with them and see how you like or dislike them in the round. All the best, Simon

    1. ...and if I use white glue rather than super glue, then presumably if I change my mind about the basing, it will be easier to debond the glue.

  4. Like Robbie, above, I prefer the look of officers and vignettes on rounds and troops on quadrilaterals whether square or rectangular. To differentiate cavalry type, perhaps, mount two figures per base for lights and three figures per base for heavies?

    Super brushwork!

  5. I would give them square bases.

    Croats were irregulars, especially during the WAS, but the Austrian hussars were used as normal battlefield cavalry normaly.

  6. These really do look great! On round square or oblong bases!

  7. Wonderfully painted figures, Jim! Were it me, I'd keep them on rectangular bases and simply mount them in a staggered, more raggedly aligned way.

    Best Regards,


  8. L'idée d'utiliser des bases rondes pour identifier des cavaliers légers aptes à être déployée en fourrageurs est intéressantes; toutefois comme le fait remarquer AMTMANN B. les hussards peuvent être employés comme des unités classiques sur le champs de bataille. Ne pourriez vous pas envisager que les deux cotés de vos bases rondes soient droits afin que vos cavaliers, bien identifiés comme cavaliers légers, puissent adopter les formations classiques de la cavalerie régulières lorsqu'elle charge en ligne.

    Your idea is interessing but don't you use straight side on left and ride on your round base? Like this your figurine are cleary identified as light cavalry, so you can employe your hussards unit as "fourrageur" (skirmisher) and don’t overlap the other round base.

  9. Skip the round bases!!!captbill