The Battle of Münchengrätz, 3 May 1757

The Battlefield at Münchengrätz

Battle fought at Napa, California
Prussian Players: John, Victor & Kai
Austrian Players: Roxanne, Werner, Suzanne & Dirk

The map shows the area immediately north of Münchengrätz. To the left is a ridgeline dominating the Niemes-Münchengrätz road. The small knoll on the right controls the Liebenau and Sobotka roads heading north-east and east respectively. The Jung Bunzlau road leaves Münchengrätz toward the south. The large forested area in the center of the map is the Münchengrätz Forst, where heavy fighting took place. The map shows the battlefield positions at approximately 15:00 hours.

Scale

  • 1 Turn = 1 Hour
  • 1 inch on table = 100 yards/meters in real life
  • 200 × 200m figure base = army/corps commander
  • 150 × 150m figure base = division commander
  • 300 × 150m figure base = 1 infantry regiment
  • 300 × 300m figure base = 1 cavalry brigade
  • 150 × 300m gun base = 1 artillery battalion
  • 150 × 300m figure base = 1 skirmish cavalry

Prussian forces (blue): Commanded by General Bevern

  • Schony Hussars in the top left of the map, but 600 yards further west than they are shown here.
  • Driesen Cuirassiers, just east of the small wood on the top left.
  • Bayreuth Dragoons, 700 yards south-east of Driesen.
  • Kleinhausen's brigade of infantry, in front of Driesen and Bayreuth.
  • Infanterie-Regiment von Möllendorf, personally commanded by General Kleinhausen,
    approximately 800 yards south of Bayreuth and just inside the Münchengrätz Forst.
  • Kleist's brigade of infantry, facing Wied's Austrian brigade on the knoll.
    The southernmost Prussian regiment in Kleist's brigade is Infanterie-Regiment von Hülsen.

Austrian Forces (red): Commanded by General Königseck

  • Benckendorf's cavalry division, just north-west of the ridge,
    with Trautmanndorf Cuirassiers on the left, Saint Ignon Dragoons on the right.
  • Andlau's brigade of infantry, on the ridge, commanded by General Königseck.
  • General Andlau and his converged Grenadiers are seen marching
    toward Münchengrätz, in an effort to cut off IR Möllendorf's advance.
  • Wied's brigade of infantry on the knoll. The regiment in the center is IR Pallavinci, facing
    north-west, against IR Quadt. Pallavinci will later charge IR Hülsen, south-west of the knoll.
  • General Wied and Infanterie-Regiment Wied-Runckel are shown
    after they moved off the knoll and began flanking the left of Kleist's line.

It is 11:00 in the morning and General Bevern is approaching ...

11:00 hours: Bevern's Prussians arrive on the battlefield, in line of two brigades, with the cavalry division behind their right flank. Andlau's Austrian brigade can be seen on the ridgeline. The Austrian cavalry division comes trotting out of the Münchengrätz Forst and deploys astride the Niemes road, just outside of the woods.

12:00 hours: The Prussian cavalry division withdraws out of Austrian charge range and deploys behind the extreme left flank of the infantry line. Austrian Croat light infantry approaches the northern edge of the Münchengrätz Forst and opens fire against the gunners in Kleist's brigade, but they are immediately dispersed by intensive Prussian cannister fire and musketry.

13:00 hours: Kleist is ordered to move his brigade 600 yards directly south, into the Münchengrätz Forst. Bevern moves the Prussian cavalry division forward to occupy Kleist's previous position. Kleinhausen refuses both flanks, pushes his guns forward and begins firing at the enemy cavalry. The Austrian cavalry division pulls back, just outside of Kleinhausen's artillery range.

14:00 hours: Kleinhausen brings his refused flanks in line with the guns again. Prussian cavalry moves into supporting position behind both of his flank. Austrian cavalry moves west into position next to the ridge (see map). On the easter flank, one of Kleist's regiments reaches the edge of the woods just opposite the knoll and begins firing battalion guns at IR Pallavinci, directly south-east.

15:00 hours: Kleist orders IR Quadt directly forward and they come to within 50 yards of IR Pallavini. The remainder of Kleist's brigade engages IR Esterhazy in a murderous firefight. To counter this attack, General Wied moves his IR Wied-Runckel forward and flanks IR Quadt. Austrian IR Esterhazy is eliminated, but not before Regiments Quadt and Blanckensee are destroyed in the crossfire of Austrian cannon and infantry muskets. General Kleist is mortally wounded and his brigade panics. Generalmajor Johann Dietrich von Hülsen assumes command of the artillery and the remaining IR Hülsen. On the western flank, Kleinhausen attaches himself to IR Möllendorf and moves them 1200 yards due south into the Münchengrätz Forst (see map). The rest of his brigade is now assigned to Prinz Heinrich and they remain in place.

16:00 hours: Kleinhausen's brigade moves forward 600 yards, toward the enemy cavalry division. Prussian cavalry maintains relative position behind the infantry brigade. General Kleinhausen and IR Möllendorf reach a position behind IR Hülsen, in the woods, in hope of supporting them. However, before they have a chance to do so, IR Pallavinci attacks Hülsen with the bayonet, routing and dispersing them. IR Wied-Runckel moves into a flanking position against Kleist's artillery. Their fire is ineffective, but General Crousatz's artillery on the knoll destroys the enemy guns. General Crousatz and General Hülsen are mortally wounded during the artillery duel.

17:00 hours: General Kleinhausen reforms the disordered IR Möllendorf and launches a bayonet charge against IR Pallavinci, routing them and ending his move in close range of the Austrian guns on the knoll. Devastating close range artillery fire and flanking fire from IR Wied-Runckel eliminates IR Möllendorf. Kleinhausen escapes and rejoins his brigade on the western flank. General Bevern attaches himself to Driesen Cuirassiers and orders the cavalry division to charge the enemy cavalry. Driesen destroys Trautmanndorf Cuirassiers in a brilliant attack, but Bayreuth Dragoons are caught in murderous close range heavy artillery and battalion gun fire from the ridge, destroying them before they are able to cross sabres with Saint Ignon. Meanwhile, Prinz Heinrich moves Kleinhausen's brigade to within 900 yards of the Austrian infantry and opens effective longe range artillery fire against them.

18:00 hours: Driesen Cuirassiers and Schony Hussars pull out, apparently in preparation to move off the battlefield before nightfall. General Kleinhausen's brigade does not advance any further, remaining stationary, 900 yards in front of Andlau's Austrian brigade on the ridge. Both sides continue to exchange long range artillery fire, without noticeable effect. General Andlau orders his Grenadiers to move against Kleinhausen's flank, and they reach a position in the woods 800 yards south-east IR Bernburg, along the Münchengrätz-Niemes road.

19:00 hours: Prussian cavalry moves off the battlefield. Kleinhausen and Andlau exchange a final round of ineffective long range artillery fire before nightfall ends the engagement. General Bevern withdraws his Prussian force to Niemes, north-west of Münchengrätz. Austrian General Königseck remains in possession of the field. There is no pursuit, neither side has any fresh cavalry.

  • Prussian Casualties: 3,000
  • Austrian Casualties: 4,000

Return to central Bohemia.