Sunday, March 27, 2011

A New Template

After learning that most images in the Virtual Museum of War of the Spanish Succession Catalan language website are subject to a Creative Commons license, I decided to use some of these images to create the uniform templates I needed for my WSS times Infantry of the Line. Such templates are following the general pattern set at the excellent web resource, so that I've been able to keep a style consistent to those other templates used for other toop types -which had been straightly provided by David Linienblatt. Thanks to either his own templates or those produced by mixing features from both sources, I've been able to produce a complete templates collection covering all of my Army...

...except for one single troop type: Mountain Fusiliers.

David had already offered himself for designing a generic WSS Mountain Fusilier template, but he must alternate such kind of selfless work for the EvE community with other kind of commissions. As I was anxious to produce some overall view on that particular troop type -which were historically key in the extraordinarily successful Catalan/Galatan resistance face to the Two Crowns combined armies, albeit so underesteemed by foreign Military Historians- but I would deeply dislike pressing David to finish a job he selflessly had volunteered to, I've finally decided to produce a WSS times Mountain Fusiliers temporary template on the basis of an image of the above mentioned Virtual Museum. This way I can comfortably keep my own designing process without annoying anyone and, as soon as we have properly designed templates available, I'll be replacing the temporary ones by those.

If curious, please check the Galatan Confederation WSS Army website. You'll notice there that only 4 of the 11 active Mountain Fusiliers Regiments have been assigned a template so far, so that uniforms or standards suggestions for the rest are warmly welcome. The first 7 regiments are fully historic, while MFR 8 is actually an overrated independent company, and MFR 9 to 11 are completely fictional units.


abdul666 said...

French Fusiliers de Montagne (generally from Roussillon) are most often than not depicted with a red jacket and a blue coat (worn on the shoulder like a pelisse), thus the colors of your rgts 2 & 3 were probably widespread. Variants (from 19th C. illustrations...) show white breeches and / or short jacket?

During the War of the Quadruple Alliance one battalion of them was raised and commanded by a rather outstanding Catalan, "le partisan Barcelo, dit Carasquet »...

The bladed weapon strapped to the palette together with two pistols is the bayonet?

The number of riflemen in the American units of the AWI is often overestimated because of the 'romantic image' attached to them. Along the same lines, were all miquelets escopeta-armed, as generally stated for those in French service, or did a proportion had ordinary muskets or even 2nd rate weapons such as fowlers (hunting shotguns) and blunderbusses?

Soldadets said...

First of all,

I beg pardon to you all for my evident lack of proficiency at English language, that has caused a major semantic error to pass unadverted to my own eyes. At some point in my posting I had written "selfishly" when I actually meant "selflessly"... and had not realized the error even after a final revision!

An immense lot of thanks to the goodwilling EvE fellow who has understood the error he was reading and has quickly warned me! I do owe you another one, guy :)

Soldadets said...


The uniform pattern you describe seems to have been shared by a number of Catalan native Mountain Fusiliers, whatever the Nation they served to.

Catalan own Mountain Fusiliers where to be uniformed in brown coats according to Charles III (VI) Ordnances of 1706 -but it can be attested that not least than half the units raised were actually uniformed in blue coats (like those of Line Infantry) and usually red jackets.

Later, when Spain raised regular units of Mountain Fusiliers too (either to fight at Italy in the Quadruple Alliance War, or even later at California) they were also issued blue uniforms.

So it seems to have been there some kind of distinctive feature beyond any coincidence...

Soldadets said...


That one Barceló you alluded is precisely the Miquelet officer leading the rescue team at our proxy RPG game... ;)

Pere-Joan Barceló was a Mountain Fusiliers lieutenant in Archduke Charles army -and later a captain in the 1713-1714 Catalan own army.

When the Quadruple Alliance War broke out, Barceló was induced by Berwick to provoke a rebellion inside Catalonia. Although he performed at his best, Philip V's unrestricted repression had been so fruitful that he achieved no outstanding successes, in spite of having raised up to 18,000 'miquelets'... Population and local authorities were so terrified by repression that no significant leader dared to follow him.

Barceló later exiled to Vienna and put his sword under Charles VI service. He died about 1745 or so as a Colonel in Austrian Army, during the siege of Breisach.

He's a national hero, quite popular in the Ebro counties of Catalonia -where he was born.

Soldadets said...

About Miquelets weaponry:

Catalan regular regiments of Miquelets were armed half with regular musket & bayonet, the other half with escopeta -a weapon only slightly smaller than a musket but quite lighter and with a lesser calibre. That firearm admitted no bayonets, but was quite suitable for sharpshooting instead.

Miquelets were also armed with 2 pistols and 1 steel blade -usually a knife, but often a sword. Such an amount of individual weapons was due to their main role as shock troops in rough terrain. Their usual tactics consisted of provoking from cover the enemy to open fire against them in a close volley; in place of responding with another volley, they rushed into a running charge instead, both pistols in hand, before the enemy could have their muskets properly feed again. They rushed into contact, shot their pistols point blank, and finished off the job with their steel blades.

This is why Philip V infantrymen were terrified at the sole idea of meeting them in rough terrain.

Use of blunderbusses is attested one century later -the Peninsular war-, although I've found no data related to such weapons being used by 1700. However, I find it quite likely, but just as personal choice weapons.

abdul666 said...

interesting! This peculiar kind of "charging" light troops is generally ignored when it comes to 'Horse & Musket' continental Western Europe. Only Highlanders are reputed for their 'wild charges', suicidal when done in the open against steady regular infantry -Culloden (or, worse, across obstacles against a fortified line - Fort Carillon).
French Fusiliers de Montagne are not quoted for this tactic in books about French lights troops I read, maybe because of the restricted role they received in mountains: basically to 'crown the heights' on the flanks of columns progressing in a valley. Thus they were noticed for their agility and speed, moving in broken rough terrain as fast as the troops on the road below.
And also for their traditional accuracy with the escopette.
In some of Vauban's new fortifications in the Pyrenees the chemin de ronde had to be protected by a heavy wooden 'roof' as a precaution against hostile miquelets sniping from other peaks.

But this type of tactic -a sudden 'downslope fanatical rush to close combat from ambush- was used (often quite successfully) by mountaineers elsewhere, namely on the North-West frontier of India.
I wonder if the 'Vaudois' in Italian service (Savoy) used the same tactic? Reputedly a number were rifle-armed, making them more like skirmishers.

The miquelets' trousers look very baggy above the knees: a contemporary -1747 ?- image seem to partly interpret them as kind of 'skirt' (as worn by some English sailors of the time)? Etching rather faithfully translated -but the 'thing' interpreted as an 'apron' in miniature (54mm).

Pere-Joan Barceló is really an extraordinary character!