Aspern Essling Battle Report

Back in the mid-nineties, the old "Thursday Night Irregulars" group played a battalion-level recreation of the battle of Aspern-Essling in 15mm, using "Legacy of Glory" as the rules.

Austrian and French Orders of Battle

Special Rules for this battle.

1:00 PM

The battle of Aspern-Essling begins when Archduke Charles turns on his pursuer, forcing Napoleon into a hasty defensive strategy.

Overall French starting setup.


French outposts in Aspern.


Austrian Reserve column in their starting position.


The peaceful little town of Aspern.
Notice the grazing sheep...


The armies face each other as the first orders are issued.p> ---

1:40 PM

The North Bridge is knocked down while under repair. The French will have to wait longer for reinforcements.

Artillery of the 5th Column opens fire.


Essling, under bombardment as the Reserve Korps waits for orders.


3rd Column stands by for orders as well.

2:00 PM

The Austrians' 2nd Column begins to advance. Napoleon orders Lasalle and Marulaz to attack the 3rd Column and Reserve Korps.

2nd Column activates and advances.


Lasalle and Marulaz deploy their cavalry for the attack.


Both cavalry divisions advance.


Marulaz leads his division into battle.

2:20 PM

16th Chasseurs a Cheval charge Neutrael Hussars (Insurrection) and drive them off. O’Reilly Chev. Countercharge the pursuing 16th, which breaks off and rallies behind the dike.

2nd Column prepares to attack.

2:40 PM

1st Column begins to advance on Aspern.

1st Column.

3:00 PM

Lasalle and Marulaz break off after driving off Hohenzollern & Kronprinz Cuirassiers with Lasalle wounded. Baden Light Dragoons & Hesse Darmstadt Chev. Are decimated by the Blankenstein Hussars led by Gen. Schwarzenberg
D’Espagne’s Cuirassier division begins to assault.

Marulaz reaches the Austrian 3rd Column.

3:20 PM

Austrian 1st & 2nd columns begin the assault on Aspern. Frensnel’s division is driven off. The French reach the church at the same time as the Austrians and take it.

Molitor's troops in Aspern.


2nd Column approaches.


2nd Column deploying.


2nd Column engaged.


French troops reach the church.


Heavy fighting in Aspern. 3rd Column waits for orders.


3:40 PM

5th Column begins advance on Essling. Charles orders the formation of a Grand Battery! D’Espagne’s Cuirassiers drive off Blankenstein Hussars & O’Reilly Chevaulegers. Kottulinsky’s division, supported by Vincent, drive Legrand out of Aspern. 2/26th Ligne remained isolated in the church. Charles personally led the attack. IV Corps artillery battery is lost.

5th Column approaching Essling. Three French cavalry divisions hold the center.


Another view of the French position and the advance on Essling.




Fighting over the church.


Nansouty's division leaves two brigades of Cuirassiers in the center and orders one brigade to attack the Austrian 5th column.


The defenders of Essling watch the cavalry battle.


One regiment of Carabiniers attack the Blankenstein Hussars and O'Reilly Chevaulegers, with another regiment in reserve.


While the cavalry fight by Essling, the Austrians are ejected from Aspern in a chaotic mess of combat.

4:00 PM

d'Espange drives off Hessen-Homburg Cuirassiers and destroys 1/57th (Collorado) in mass, then recalls behind the dike. Kottulinsky takes Aspern church from the 2/26th.

The Austrians capture the church.


Hiller brings up artillery to defend the church.

4:20 PM

5th Column assaults Essling. Boudet is killed. The North bridge is repaired. Austrian 1st column captures part of Aspern. Molitor is killed.

Archduke Charles (Steve Miller) moves his troops to Essling.


4th and 5th columns advancing. ---

Attack on Essling.


The wall, south side of Essling.


Fighting in Aspern as the grand battery forms up.

4:40 PM

Austrian Grand Battery formed between Aspern and Essling.

The Grand Battery is formed.


Cavalry line up behind the guns to defend in case the French charge.


5:00 PM

Aspern – 16th Ligne standard taken by 36th Kolowrat regt. Essling – 5th Column driven off. Lannes commanded 3/56th battalion personally. Kienmayers Reserve Cavalary with Liechtenstein attached begins attack towards d’Espagne’s division. 92 gun Austrian Grand Battery opens fire as Lasalle’s cavalry charges (in a one mile wide line!) in an attempt to suppress them. 4 French Light Cavalry regiments are decimated (1380 casualties out of 2400 troopers) and Lasalle is killed.

Lannes holds the line and drives the Austrians out of Essling.


Austrian cavalry attack the center as the Grand Battery opens fire.

5:20 PM

Kienmayers division, Liechtenstein Cuirassiers charge the French 4th Cuirassiers, are disordered crossing over the dike and are driven back. Nansouty and St. Cyr arrive.

Austrian guns support the cavalry attack over the dike.

5:40 PM

Vincent’s division is driven out of Aspern. 4th Cuirassiers beaten by Knesevich Dragoons who pursue into 6th Cuirassiers, who drive off the Austrians. More cavalry die in the French center from artillery fire.

It is a tough fight in Aspern.


The "Fickle Fingers of Fate" select the dead....

6:00 PM

Maurluz – IV Cav. Corps Leading 14th Chausseurs has his horse shout out from under him. Combat over dike is indecisive. LeGrand killed. 2nd & 3rd Austrian Columns driven out of Aspern. 1st Column pushes further into Aspern.

Notice the Austrian flag in the midst of the French!

6:20 PM

Marulaz’s cavalry drives Kienmayer’s cavalry back to the Grand Battery. 1st Column takes another city block on Aspern (owning 3). 26 more guns are added to the grand battery….118 guns total.

118 gun grand battery.

6:40 PM

South bridge up. Kienmayer drives deep into French center pushing back Marulaz and d’Espagne.

7:00 PM

2nd & 3rd Columns enter Aspern. Nostitz division of the 2nd Column moves around Aspern through the woods to attack the south side of town. Molitor’s artillery & corps guns stall the attack as the infantry emerge from the woods. Nansouty charges 5th column – 2nd Cuirassiers personally led by Nansouty are decimated and shattered against the 14th Bellgarde regiment in masse. Nansouty is killed.

Fighting in and around Aspern.


The French pour troops into the defense of Aspern.


2nd Cuirassiers attack 5th Column. Nansouty is the only one without a white cap on his head. He'll be dead soon...should have worn a white cap!

7:20 PM

General Ledru (commanding for Legrand) killed. Kienmayer driven off by the combined forces of Lasalle, Marulaz, d’Espagne and Nansouty. The 9th & 12th Cuirassiers take a trophy from Knesevich dragoons. 24th Legere (under St. Cyr) attacks Nostitz in the Gemeide Au.

Austrian cavalry in the French center.


How do so many soldiers fit into Aspern?

7:40 PM

24th Legere driven out of Gemeide Au. Old Guard arrives on the battlefield. 1st Carabiniers destroy part of the 5th Column and the Archduke Ferdinand Hussars. Lasalle’s Light cavalry are ‘commandiered’ by Massena and sent into the 3rd Column but are driven off. 4th Column attacks Essling and takes the Granery from the 3/93rd Ligne (A ‘20’ rolled on 2d10!). 3rd Cuirassiers capture the 14th Bellgarde regiment and 5th Column artillery. The entire 5th Column routs from the field. Aspern catches fire.

This is a great overview of the fighting in the center, Aspern, and Old Guard reinforcements.


Heavy fighting in the Geneide Au.


Austrian Grenadiers capture the Granary.


5th Column officers survey Essling before retiring.

8:00 PM

FML Hiller is killed in Aspern. St. Cyr takes back part of Aspern, but the 2nd Column continues to gain ground as well. Nostitz division routs out of Geimeide Au. Marshal Lannes is lightly wounded in Essling (at least his legs are okay). Nansouty’s division is stopped by 4th Columns support cavalry. The Austrian Grenadier divisions move towards Essling. Austrian general Vogelsang leads the Erz. John Dragoons in a bold attack and reach the dike in the center.

4th Column and Grenadiers of the reserve approach Essling.


Attack on Essling.


While the fighting in Aspern doesn't slow down.

8:20 PM

Leguay (Molitor) killed in Aspern. 3rd Column enters Aspern. Nordmann (1st Column) is repulsed from Aspern by St. Cyr, but hold onto the church. The Young Guard reaches the field. 4th Column (1st Jaegers, 3rd Erz. Karl regiment) captures part of Essling. Lannes leads an attack against the 4th Column’s cavalry and drives it off. Lasalle’s division is finally eliminated. Marulaz’s division is damaged by the Erz. John Dragoons who make it past the dike and into the middle of the French position.

3rd Column's action at Aspern.


Austrian dragoons behind the dike!

8:40 PM

Guard Cavalry and 2nd Heavy Cavalry division enter the battle. The Empress Dragoons attack and defeat the Erz. John Dragoons, killing Vogelsang. However, the Vincent Chev have followed and push back the Empress Dragoons all the way to Napoleon’s HQ.

9:00 PM

The Lindenau Grenadier division takes Essling, killing Lannes (Poor guy can’t catch a break). Napoleon is seriously wounded (and later dies) during the attack on his HQ by the Vincent Chev. The French army begins a general retreat to Lobau island.

Essling is captured by the Austrians!


The French center is collapsing.


Stalemate (or slaughter).


Napoleon (Clay Smith) realizes the battle is over.

Other club's Aspern Essling battle reports. Club 1 Club 2

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