William Prince of Orange-Nassau

Kennington Miniatures 1:72 Scale Figure Review

William Prince of Orange-Nassau at Waterloo, 1815, 1:72 Figures Kennington Miniatures NP4

Commander 1st Corps of the Anglo-Allied army at Waterloo. A typical 2″ × 2″ wargaming command base, showing the corps commander, an officer and private from the 2nd Nassau Infantry Regiment, part of the 2nd Brigade, 2nd Netherlands Division at Waterloo. The Prince is shown mounted on a grey horse with medium brown reins and a plain saddle, without shabraque. He wears a black hussar style jacket with black fur and gold braid, grey overalls with red sidestripe, black bicorn with white plume, and a Mameluke sabre in a red velvet scabbard. The Airfix model of the Waterloo Farm La Haye Sainte has been chosen as a backdrop.

The Lion

The Prince of Orange held the rank of Major-General in the British army, and in 1815 he was nominally in command of the entire Anglo-Allied army until the Duke of Wellington arrived to take over. The appointment was a political one, the 23-year-old Prince and heir to the throne of the Netherlands was not experienced enough to fill the role successfully. The Prince has been criticized for a number of tactical mistakes he made during the Battle of Waterloo, on 18th June 1815. Today, a cast iron monument of The Lion stands on the top of a 40.5 meter mound built on the spot where the Prince of Orange is thought to have been wounded during the battle.

The Orange-Nassau infantry regiment was raised in 1814 as the 3rd Regiment of the Duchy of Nassau. The men were recruited in the province of Orange-Nassau which had been re-created after the dissolution of the Archduchy of Berg. Nassau traditionally maintained close ties with Holland and Nassau troops served in Dutch pay. The French revolution and Napoleonic Wars caused many upheavals, Holland became a vassal Kingdom in 1806, under Napoléon's brother Louis Bonaparte, and it was incorporated into France from 1810 until 1814, when Wilhelm I. of Orange became King of the Netherlands. Nassau was partitioned by the French and the regiments of Nassau-Usingen (1st) and Nassau-Weilburg (2nd) were compelled to serve in the French army between 1806 and 1813. During and after the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig, Saxony, Bavaria and many of the smaller German states defected and joined the allies in their struggle against Napoléon. To avert the danger of defection, the French disarmed and interned the 1st Nassau Regiment and the Nassau Chasseurs, only the 2nd Regiment managed to desert to the British. All three Nassau infantry regiments and a Landwehr regiment served at Waterloo.

Contents

  • 1 mounted officer – 23 mm equal 166 cm height
  • 1 horse – 22 mm equal 15.2 hands

Evaluation

Excellent detail. Braiding and fur on the hussar style jacket, feather plumes, facial features, the horse's mane and tail are nicely sculpted and paint up well.

The figure's face has a lot of character, the Prince does look young.

The general is shown at rest, viewing the battlefield, a very useful and historically accurate wargaming pose.

Horse and rider are surprisingly compatible with the Italeri and Revell figure sets, even if they are noticeably stockier than their plastic comrades. This particular figure may be mounted alongside plastic miniatures without a problem. The Nassau infantry figures are stouter and they have larger heads and shakos than comparable Revell and Italeri infantry. They may not mix well in the same units, but entire regiments of Kennington soldiers will be nicely compatible with units composed of Italeri or Revell plastic figures.

Excellent casting quality, very little flash.

Historical Employment

  • The Battle of Quatre Bras, Belgium 1815
  • The Battle of Waterloo, Belgium 1815

Bibliography

General officers and historic personalities add variety and period flavor to an army of accurately painted plastic or metal miniatures. This particular commander looks very impressive when painted and displayed in a Waterloo diorama or as a corps commander in wargames. The Kennington figure is a welcome addition to the growing range of 1:72 scale Napoleonic troops. The Prince of Orange is part of a series of Kennington personality figures which also includes Wellington, Picton, Uxbridge, Blücher, Napoleon and Ney.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Napoleonic Miniatures