Thursday, June 20, 2013

Napoleonic British Infantry






1:32 Napoleonic British Infantry from ESCI.

The British Army during the Napoleonic Wars experienced a time of rapid change. At the beginning of the French Revolutionary Wars in 1793, the army was a small, awkwardly administered force of barely 40,000 men.[1] By the end of the period, the numbers had vastly increased. At its peak, in 1813, the regular army contained over 250,000 men. The British infantry was "the only military force not to suffer a major reverse at the hands of Napoleonic France."

Life for a redcoat soldier was often tough and challenging. Plenty of training was needed before a soldier could enter the battlefield; drills and exercises had to be strictly followed as punishments were applied for even the most minor of mistakes.

A well trained soldier could fire up to four rounds per minute, and the use of the platoon formation by the British army meant that a constant volley of fire could be employed. There was much that could go wrong with the musket – from misfires in wet weather, to the gun firing at random due to sparks which set the powder off.n the heat of war a soldier may forget to remove the ramrod from the barrel before firing, and the inaccuracy of the flintlock (even though it was more reliable than the matchlock) meant that the enemy had to be within at least 30 paces for an accurate shot to be fired. -- from Wikipedia

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