By Michael McNally
This can be the tale of 1 of the good battles which cast the attractiveness of the Duke of Marlborough as certainly one of history's maximum captains. His tactical instinct at the box of Ramillies resulted in might be his best battlefield functionality and cleared the path for a crusade that may see a lot of Flanders, together with very important towns corresponding to Bruges, Brussels, Antwerp and Louvain, come less than Allied keep watch over. This name, with brilliant illustrations and unique attention of the disposition, power and plans of the opposing forces, examines the context and results of the conflict. It additionally illuminates the serious combating on the top of the engagement, together with huge, immense cavalry melees within which Marlborough used to be unhorsed and extremely approximately killed.
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Extra resources for Ramillies 1706: Marlborough's tactical masterpiece (Campaign, Volume 275)
Lede (8 bns) 9. Montpesat (9 bns) 10. Besenval (3 bns) 11. Villeroi (6 bns) 12. Grimaldi (4 bns) 13. Mangelschot (5 sqns) 14. Horn (11 sqns) 15. d’Alégre (5 sqns) 16. d’Antin (9 bns) 17. Barial (4 bns) 18. Zuniga (4 bns) 19. Liancourt (5 sqns) 20. Monasterol (8 sqns) 21. Egmont (16 sqns) XXX VILLEROI XXXX D’ARTAGNAN XXX ELECTOR DE GUISCARD OFFUS 12 10 OTTOMONT 11 9 13 15 14 8 3 TOMB OF OTTOMOND 5 3 7 4 1 RAMILLIES 6 2 VISSOULE STREAM TAVIERS 5 FERME DE FRANQUENÉE K L 2 N RIVER MEHAIGNE Note: Gridlines are shown at intervals of 1km 46 ALLIES UNITS A.
To Orkney’s left stood firstly a brigade of six British battalions under the Irishman George Macartney (‘Churchill’, ‘Mordaunt’, ‘Evans’, ‘Macartney’, ‘Stringer’ and ‘Howe’), itself flanked by a Danish brigade under Philipp von Donop (‘Garde til Fods’, ‘Prinz Karl’, ‘Sjaelland’ and ‘Oldenburg’) and as the troops moved forward, the terrain meant that they began to gravitate northwards, imperceptibly opening a gap between themselves and the brigades that were earmarked to assault the enemy centre, the hinge between the formations being covered by Churchill’s and Mordaunt’s battalions positioned on Macartney’s extreme right.
On either side of the stream, the ground slopes down to the bank for a distance of around 50 feet, ground which in May 1706 would have been waterlogged by the previous days’ heavy rainfall, the dirt tracks becoming ever more treacherous with the passage of the troops – Orkney himself stated that his brigades took a considerable amount of time to negotiate the obstacles and form up for the attack. In short, it would have been a difficult proposition for an encumbered man to make his way with ease, let alone several thousand attempting to keep formation in the face of a determined enemy defence.