Bonaparte’s Retreat – The real thing this time…

This looks as if it might make interesting viewing for Napoleonic buffs…

Napoleon’s failure: For the want of a winter horseshoe 

…though I think a lack of frost-nails might have been the least of the emperor’s problems.

~ by cavalrytales on February 9, 2012.

2 Responses to “Bonaparte’s Retreat – The real thing this time…”

  1. But what this is omitting to say is that half the army was dead of dehydration and dysentery before they ever crossed into Russia at the end of June 1812. Yes, the lack of proper horseshoes meant that those poor horses and blighters didn’t stand a chance (it also demonstrated Napoleon’s total lack of knowledge about the cavalry and horses in general because he couldn’t see that they were irreplaceable…)


    • I think the article fails in part because it tries too hard to find a simple reason behind a complex problem.

      An article in today’s Daily Mail suggested British infantry could have used a breech-loading rifle much earlier than 1860’s Snider-Enfield because one was available in 1776, and in fact tested by an expermental battalion during the War of Independence. What it didn’t say was its design proved unreliable and impractical under battlefield conditions.


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