Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Kingdom of Italy pt 2: Cavalry, Artillery

Chasseurs a Cheval (Cacciatore a Cavallo):  

There were two regiments in 1806, the 1st (Real Italiano) and 2nd (Pincipe Reale). A third regiment was added in 1809, and a 4th in 1811. Their uniform was basically similar to the French Chasseurs a Cheval, with dark green single breasted coats, often with white lace bars across the chest, dark green pants with white Hungarian knots and/or piping down the outside seems, and white metal buttons. The facing color showed on the collars, cuffs,  and turnbacks. A black shako was worn with white metal plaque and chinscales; it seems that the first regiment retained a black Czapska with white piping until at least 1809, however. Plume was dark green with a tip in the facing color; Von Pivka says the third regiment wore a black colpack with a cockade at the top front center, and a red plume above it. The Elite companies of all regiments wore the colpack with a red plume and a bag (flamme) in the facing color, along with white epaulettes. Trumpeters generally wore jackets in reversed colors, and their plumes were in the facing color with a white tip. Shabraques were dark green with white edging when worn; the lambskin covered saddles were white (black for trumpeters) with "wolves teeth" edging in the facing color.

REGIMENT
FACING COLOR
1st
Light Yellow
2nd
Orange (or Red?)
3rd
Red
4th
Violet



Here is the 4th Regiment of Chasseurs a Cheval of the Army of Italy. I of course chose this unit for their rather unique violet facing color!

Note the hand painted flag of  French-inspired pattern. 


As usual, I love reversed colors on a trumpeter; don't ghet to do that in purple very often, though!. This regiment had white lace chevrons on the sides of their shakos, at least at one point. After 1812, the chest lace disappeared as funds became too tight for such frivolities!


Dragoons (Dragoni):  

The Kingdom of Italy had two regiments, converted from the earlier Hussars of the Italian Republic in 1806; the 1st Hussars became the Dragoni Regina, and the second, the Dragoni Napoleone. Their uniform was again very similar to their French counterparts, with green coats and white breeches. Buttons were white metal. Square shrabques were green edged in white, and the sheepskin saddle covers were one again white (black for trumpeters), with facing colored "wolves teeth" edging. A brass helmet with black horsehair was worn, similar to that of French Dragoons. The First (Regina) regiment's helmet had a turban of leopardskin and a green plume to the left of the helmet,; the second (Napoleone) regiment had a black fur turban, and their plume was carmine over black. The elite companies wore black bearskins with a red plume, cul-de-singe, and cords, as well as red epaulettes.

REGIMENT
FACING COLOR
1st  (Dragoni Regina)
Pink
2nd  (Dragoni Napoleone)
Capucine red



The Dragoni Napoleone. I chose to use a dark red shade for the Capucine hue, in part because I already had a French Dragoon regiment wearing scarlet facings, so it would differentiate them more. It seems the color can refer either to a deep red brown hue like this, or a light pinkish-red with distinct orange brown tones to it. The standard is hand painted once again.


Rear view of the 2nd Italian Dragoons.


The trumpeter wears reversed colors (of course!), with a white horsehair main and tufts on his helmet, similar to French Dragoons of the era. 


Galloping forward to action!  This unit has always performed well for me on the wargames table.



Foot Artillery

The Italian foot artillery generally was dressed similarly to their French equivalents, substituting dark green jackets and pants for the dark blue color of the French. In 1806 there were some 20 companies ([6 of gunners, plus one each of  pontonniers, bombardiers (usually manned mortars in fortresses), ouvriers (literally "workers"), and one of artificiers and armuriers (smiths and gunpowder handlers) ] in a single regiment of Foot Artillery, wearing bicornes with a red pom pom. The jackets had black lapels and collars, with red cuffs (other sources say black cuffs piped red), cuff flaps, turnbacks, and red piping on the shoulder straps, pockets, lapels and collars. Buttons were white metal. Ouvriers had red lapels, Potonniers sky blue, artificiers light grey and bombardiers dark red; by 1807, all wore the same uniforms as the cannoniers (gunners). Drummers wore the same uniforms as the men; drums brass with tricolor (re-white-green) diagonal bands painted on the drum rims.

By 1809, the shako had been adopted, with red cords and short carrot plume. The uniform was otherwise essentially unchanged. The cords were abolished in 1812. By 1812, there were 20 companies of cannnoniers, 3 of pontonniers, 3 of ouviers, 1 of armuriers, and a depot company.




A battery of Foot Artillery of the Kingdom Of Italy prepares to fire!


I have given this battery guns with their carriages painted in French Artillery Green; it appears grey was the official color for Italian artillery equipment.


A final view of the battery; I have chosen the black cuffs piped in red option.



Horse Artillery

In 1806 there were six companies of Horse Artillery in a single regiment, rising to 8 companies in 1808, but decreasing to 4 in 1812. However, it appears that the companies of artillery train were included in the Horse artillery establishment until 1811, and thus there were only 2 companies of actual Horse Artillery until the train companies were split off in 1811, and then 4 companies of actual Horse Artillery starting in 1812. The uniforms of the horse artillery were similar to the foot artillery: dark green jacket and pants, black collar and cuffs piped in red, red turnbacks, red lace bars across the chest, red piping and/or Hungarian knots on the trousers, and white buttons. Black boots with red piping and tassels. Black czapaska with a brass crossed cannons plaque on the front, changing to a black shako in 1812.; both had a tricolor cockade and a red plume. Belts were white. Officers had silver epaulettes. Trumpeter's uniforms were essentially the same as the rest of the men.


A company of Italian Horse Artillery.


The sheep looks unimpressed by the guns rolling down the road!


This picture shows the horse furniture and piping on the boots and trousers well.



Artillery Train

A battalion of 10 companies of Artillery Train was first raised in 1811. They wore a medium grey jacket with white pants, black boots, and a medium grey shako with black leather reinforcing bands on the top and bottom. The jacket was faced medium green on the collars, cuffs and turn backs, and the grey shoulder straps were piped medium green. There were bands of medium green lace across the chest as well. Saddle blankets were grey edged in medium green. Brass butons and shako plate, short green carrot plume on the shako.

   The Line and Light Infantry, as well as a good listing of on line sources was already covered in Part 1 of this series. Part 3 will cover the Royal Guard and General Officers.

Peter

23 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Yep, good old Minifigs from the late 1970's. I have probably gotten more use out of my Italians than any other minor state.

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  2. Very striking figures and units. By the way, pink goes very well with dark green, I find. Most of my Napoleonics are Minifigs - still my favorite figures.

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    1. I agree on both counts; one of my French Dragoon regiments already has pink facings, and they look very good!

      http://blundersonthedanube.blogspot.com/2011/03/french-dragoons.html

      Peter

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  3. Some great looking units. I like the 4th Chasseurs a Cheval in their violet!

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    1. They are rather unique that way!

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  4. Nice stuff Peter. I particularly like the way the 'braiding' on the chasseurs came up. Nice sheep too...!

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    1. Thanks, I like the braid too. Was fairly common for French units in the earlier years of the empire as well. It started to disappear when things were going baaaa-dly

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  5. Great info as always and good to see Minifigs on show

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    1. Thanks. I think the Minifgs hold up quite well after all these years, even though they are more simply (but cleanly) sculpted.

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  6. I love the shakos of the artillerymen!
    Rafa

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  7. Another good post. I should do a small Italian command for Dennewitz.

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    1. Absolutely! The Italians saw a lot of action 1805 under Massena in N. taly, 1807 in Poland, 1809 under Eugene, 1812 (especially Maloyaorslavets), 1813 in Germany, 1814 in defense of the Kingdom again.... not to mention Spain.

      Just the thing to do with "left over" French figures!

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  8. Very nice looking troops...Italian Nap' army was my first one, and it's always a pleasure to look at such wonderful figures...
    Phil.

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    1. Thanks, Phil. Kingdom of Italy is an interesting choice for a first Napoleonic army; how did that come about?

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    2. I've won all my battles for 1 or 2 years ... then the Russians players have found the flaw, many guns against the Italian bravery ... very hard to resist despite the French ally! But it is really a beautiful and funny army to play. The bodyguards are few but very nice too, don't know if you got them...
      All the best,
      Phil.

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    3. I have the Grenadiers of the Royal Guards, but not the Gardes of Honnor, which would be fun in their helmets, green coats, and facings colored by city, if that';s what you mean, Phil. Not sure which figures to use for them - might need a conversion there!

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    4. If I'm not wrong, mine were Minifigs...

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    5. I will consider a Carabinier or Line Lancer (w/o lance) conversion for the future; could be a case for plastic there.

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  9. Late to the game, but thanks for another great guide. Just what I needed to inspire me to finish my 6mm Italians....

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    Replies
    1. Glad it's helpful... now get painting! :-)

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  10. These are lovely Peter, was searching for Italian artillery and found your page. Must have missed them 1sr time round.

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