The battle of Langensalza was to be the last battle for the
Hanoverian army. It had been hastily mobilised and was attempting
to march south to join it's Bavarian and VIIIth Federal Corps
allies. Unfortunately it was operating in the growing belief
that its path was blocked in all directions by the pursuing
Prussians. Therefore it paused to rest for a while to consider
its options. Meanwhile an ad-hoc Prussian force had closed
on it and attacked. What exactly the motive was for this attack
is still an area of some contoversy. One thing is for sure
though it pinned the Hanoverians in place and helped convince
them that they were surrounded. Leading to there eventual
capitulation a short while later.
The purpose of this page is to provide the details for refighting
this battle, using modified 'Fire and Fury' rules. The modifications
to the rules are at Fire and Furia
Francese, while the campaign modifications are at War
of 1866 Rules.
Scale and Notes:
This scenario is in the 1 stand = 150 men scale. The game starts
with the 10:00 Prussian phase and finishes with the 16:30 Hanoverian
phase. The Hanoverian's move first in each turn.
Orders of Battle:
The Prussian Infantry are armed with the Dreyse needle gun (NG),
except for those marked with an * which have MLR. Roll a D6 for
each unit that does not have an 'E' leader. On a roll of a 6 cavalry,
landwehr or depot units have an 'E' leader, on a roll of a
5 or 6 all others have an 'E' leader.
Army Commander: von Flies 1 Ldr. (Arrives 11:00 Prussian
Reserve Artillery: 1 Foot gun (BLA). (Arrives 11:00 Prussian phase)
Advance Guard: von Fabeck 1 Ldr.
- Combined Cavalry: 3 / - / 2
- Saxe Coburg Gotha Regt: 10 / 8 / 5
- 1 Foot Battery (BLA)
Main Body: Baron Hanstein 1Ldr (E). (All arrives 11:30 Prussian
phase in any formation)
- 1st / 25th Infantry Regt: 6 / 5 / 3
- 2nd / 25th Infantry Regt: 6 / 5 / 3
- 1st / 11th Grenadier Regt: 6 / 4 / 2
- 2nd / 11th Grenadier Regt: 6 / 5 / 3
- 3rd / 11th Grenadier Regt: 6 / 5 / 3
- 2nd / 32nd Landwehr Regt: 4 / - / 3 *
- 1 Foot gun (SA)
Reserves: von Seckdorff 1 Ldr. (All arrives 12:30 Prussian
phase in any formation)
- 27th and 32nd Landwehr Regt: 8 / 7 / 5 *
- 20th Landwehr Regt: 8 / 7 / 5 *
- 71st Regt Depot Btn: 3 / - / 2
- 1 Horse battery (SA)
The infantry are armed with a MLR, the artillery as noted. Roll
a D6 for each unit that does not have an 'E' leader. On a roll of
a 5 or 6 units have an 'E' leader.
Army Commander: von Arentsschildt 1 Ldr (P).
Advance Guard Cavalry: 3 / 2 / -
Reserve Cavalry: 4 / 2 / - E
Reserve Artillery: 1 Foot gun (BLA), 1 Foot gun (SA), 1 Horse gun
4th Brigade: von Bothmer 1 Ldr.
1st Brigade: von dem Knesebeck 1 Ldr.
- Guard Regt: 8 / 5 / 3
- Leib Regt: 7 / 5 / 3
- Guard Jager: 3 / 2 / - L
- 1 Foot gun (SA)
2nd Brigade: de Vaux 1 Ldr.
- 2nd Infantry Regt: 8 / 6 / 4
- 3rd Infantry Regt: 7 / 5 / 4
- 1st Jager: 3 / 2 / - L
- 1 Foot gun (BLA)
3rd Brigade: von Bulow Stolle 1 Ldr.
- 4th Infantry Regt: 8 / 6 / 4
- 5th Infantry Regt: 7 / 5 / 4
- 2nd Jager: 3 / 2 / - L
- 1 Foot gun (BLA)
- 6th Infantry Regt: 8 / 6 / 4
- 7th Infantry Regt: 7 / 5 / 4
- 3rd Jager: 3 / 2 / - L
- 1 Foot gun (BLA)
Notes: The Hanoverian army is described as having sent the recruits
to the rear. Therefore I have reduced the size of the units to account
for these unknown number of absentees. If you wish to, and enjoy
kicking a man when he is down, you can use the full OOB. It is at
The German States Forces in 1866.
Deployment and Reinforcements.
The Hanoverians deploy first, except for the Advance Guard
Cavalry (see below), in any desired formation.
1st Brigade and the Reserve Cavalry: Off
table, arrive within 6" of Point B when activated.
2nd Brigade: Within 12" of Merxleben and north of the Unstrutt.
3rd Brigade and the Reserve Artillery: Within 18" of Thamsbruck
and north of the Unstrutt.
4th Brigade: Within 18" of Nagelstadt and north of the
Advance Guard Cavalry: Anywhere to the south of the Unstrutt.
Between 6" and 12" away from the river. Deploy after the
Prussians have deployed.
The Prussians deploy after the bulk of the Hanoverian army
but before the Advance Guard Cavalry.
Advance Guard: Deployed on table within 6" of the southern
most point of Langensalza.
The remainder: Enter the table within 6" of Point A.
The River Unstrutt: There are 3 sections to this
feature. The Western and Eastern main parts of the river, ie those
sections either side of the two central bridges. Along with the
three smaller streams, two exiting of the Western edge and the one
near to Merxleben.
The main sections are impassible to artillery and cavalry. They
count as a 2" wide river for infantry. in addition when an
infanrty unit cross the river it must dice to see if water has entered
it's equipment (see River Crossing in special rules below).
The western section of the Unstrutt also can provide troops with
cover, it conveys a +1 modifier in fire and melee combat.
The smaller streams are normal 1" wide streams.
The Villages: All villages count as difficult
going and give a +1 combat bonus.
Woods: The 'woods' are in fact orchards and gardens
for the adjacent Bath house. They function as normal woods in all
others ways but they do not count as difficult going.
Marsh: Marsh counts as difficult going and gives
a +1 bonus in melee combat only.
River Crossing: Any unit that crosses
the main section of the Unstrutt river must make a dice throw to
determine if it has effected it's equipment. Roll a D10 per unit,
1 to 5 there is no effect, 6 to 10 the unit receives an 'Out of
Ammo' marker. A -1 dice modifier if it has an 'E' unit commander
or higher commander within command radius (Max -1).
Hanoverian Activation: The bulk of
the Hanoverian army starts the game unactivated. While in this state
units may only move within the limits of there deployment area.
The Advance Guard Cavalry is always active and my move from the
start of the game. The Reserve Artillery is semi activated during
the 12:00 turn, unless it has already been activated as below. From
this phase onwards it may move to anywhere North of the Unstrutt,
once the army is activated it may move as normal.
Except for those units mentioned above the army must be activated
before it can have freedom of movement. Starting with the 11:00
Hanoverian phase, and at the start of the phase, the Hanoverans
roll a D10 for activation. On the 11:00 turn a 10 is needed, 9 or
10 at 11:30, 8, 9 or 10 at 12:00, etc. A dice roll of a 1 is always
a failure. The Hanoverians may add +1 to the dice if any unspent
Prussian unit is within 6" of the Unstrutt river, +4
if an unspent Pussian unit is north of the Unstrutt.
On the phase that the army is activated the Army Commander and
the Reseve Artillery may move as normal. In addition the 1st Brigade
may advance onto the table within 6" of Point B. In the following
phase the 3rd and 4th Brigades may move as normal. While the Reserve
Cavalry appears at Point B on the second phase after activation.
The 2nd Brigade may move as normal on the phase after
all the infantry units of the 1st Brigade have crossed to the southern
side of the Unstrutt.
The normal victory points for 1866 battles are awarded, ie as the
normal schedule but with the suggested modifications for light infantry,
cavalry and Prussian artillery. In addition the following scenario
specific rules apply.
1 v.p per turn that they have an unspent infantry unit in Langensalza,
or were the last player to have such a unit there.
1 v.p per turn that they have an unspent infantry unit with 6"
of the Unstrutt river.
2 v.p's per turn that they have any unspent units on the Northern
side of the Unstrutt river, plus an additional 1 v.p per turn per
unspent infantry unit that is North of the river. ie If they have
two unspent infantry units north of the river they will get 2 v.p's
(any unit unspent across the river) + 2 v.p's for there being two
The Historical Battle:
After an intitial period of manoeuvre, when elements of the army
were sent forward to gain an idea of their strength, the Hanoverian
army pulled it's main combat units back behind the Unstrutt. They
had noted the Prussian advance, but had no idea about the strength
of their foe, they therefore adopted a defensive stance in their
strong position and awaited events. Meanwhile the Prussians were
moving to the attack. Why exactly they should do this remains some
what of a mystery. They knew that they were outnumbered and just
by holding their positions they were pinning the Hanoverian army
in place until further Prussian force cold arrive.
Nevertheless advance they did! First the Advance Guard, then the
rest of the army as it arrived pushed on towards the river. The
artillery positioned itself on the Judenhugel hill and soon became
engaged in an artillery duel with the Hanoverian reserve artillery
on Kirchberg. Meanwhile the Prussian infantry used the cover of
the orchards and gardens around the Bath to approach the river.
Several attempts were made to cross the river at and near the central
bridges but the Hanoverians numbers proved decisive.
While these events were proceeding the realisation grew in the
Hanoverian command that they had misread the situation. The Prussians
were not very numerous and in addition they had become 'bogged down'
in front of the Unstrutt. So the order was given to advance to the
attack. Patchily at first but with growing force the Hanoverians
pressed forward and over the river.
The outnumbered, and by now tired, Prussians had little choice
but to fall back. This they did fighting all the way and putting
up a stiff resistance in Langensalza itself. Yet by 14:00 hours
the town had been cleared of Prussians. The final act was then played
out. The Hanoverian reserve cavalry, which had been late coming
up for the action, was released to pursue the demoralised enemy
of the field.
In the face of this onslaught some of the Prussians formed into
the anacronistic square formation. Yet the superb Hanoverian cavalry
was still capable of of 'trumping' this anacronism with there own.
They charged in, in the manner of their predecessors, and managed to
break two of the squares and capture 6 Prussian guns!!! So much
for the changing face of 19th century warfare.
Despite losing the battle the Prussians had succeeded in their
wider aims. The battle itself, recovering from it and the continuing
doubts about the position and strength of the Prussians all combined
to pin the Hanoverians in place. Giving the Prussians the time to
amass sufficient forces to force the Hanoverians to surremder.