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Tony Hughes

“This may be a little harsh but Napoleonics, a vile period of self-manoeuvring firing squads, artillery that targeted humans as duck-pins on a vast and lethal bowIing alley and socially superior cavalry who butchered the proles from horseback and seemed to think this good sport. To be honest mass combat from the late 16th century to the end of the Franco-Prussian War seems like suicidal madness to me. The slaughter of the masses by employing tactics which throw away their lives in order to concentrate fire-power and enhance manoeuvrability and command control seem obscene to my mind.”

It isn’t harsh on napoleonics, just historically incorrect. If you were describing post 1914 WW1 or some battles of the ACW, I’d have to agree on some points but that doesn’t describe Napoleonic warfare with any accuracy. For a start, the cavalry were just conscripts in most armies, just like the infantry. Casualties were far higher from disease than most battles.

Naval warfare at the time was no less bloody and conditions far worse than those on land, both in and out of battle.