Sunday 27 August 2023

Battlereport: Jakubowo 1812 Refight

Another refight today at the local club, Jakubowo/Klyastitsy, from the northern front in 1812 campaign. Paul and I took the defending French, while Ion and Matt attacked with the Russians.


Below is the map and overview of the scenario, decided upon after consulting a range of sources and interpretations of this action. The battlefield seems to have been on a narrow front between heavily wooded terrain, which would make it a very attritional battle with high troop density. The exact size of the settlement of Jakubowo is hard to decide upon and there seem to be various interpretations, some have it up to half a km wide, but I went with the below.

I also found one other nice looking refight of this in 6mm here at David Grech's blog for comparison.

French CinC: Oudinot (2 Support rolls)

Legrand(2 Rerolls) (line of squares South of Jakubowo plus Jakubowo and ridge)
Albert 5: 4 Light Infantry (In and around buildings of Jakubowo)
Maison 5: 4 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers
Moleau 4: 4 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers
Castex 4: 2 Light cavalry (line of squares just South of Jakubowo)

Vedier(1 Reroll) (line of squares just north of Gvodsky) 

Vives 4: 4 Light Infantry, 5 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

Pouget 5: 4 Line, 4 Recruit Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

Arrive turn 3 from south edge

Doumerc 4: 3 Veteran Cuirassiers, 2 Veteran Horse Artillery

Russian CinC: Wittgenstein (2 Support rolls)

24” deployment from north edge
Koulnieff 4: (Advance guard) 1 Veteran Light cavalry, 1 Raw Light cavalry (Cossacks), 1 Veteran Horse Artillery
Dennisiev 4: 4 Light Infantry  

12” deployment from north edge

Berg (1 Reroll)

Prince of Siberia 4: 4 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

Loukoff 4: 4 Line, 4 Light Infantry, 1 Foot Artillery, 2 Heavy Artillery

Kakhofski 3: 7 Veteran Line (Grenadiers), 1 Veteran Horse Artillery

Balk 4: 2 Dragoons

Arriving turn 1 from north edge

Sasanov (0 rerolls)

Harpe 4: 4 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

Helfrick 4: 4 Line, 1 Foot Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

Prince Repnin 3: 1 Veteran Cuirassiers, 1 Dragoon, 1 Heavy Artillery, 1 Skirmishers

French: 29 Inf, 5 Cavalry, 6 Artillery, 4SK

Russian: 34 Inf, 6 Cavalry, 9 Artillery, 4SK

French deploy, then Russians. Russian artillery deploys limbered.
French have one round of shooting, then Russians have first turn.

The Battle

Here's the deployment, with the entire Russian Corp preparing to advance. Dennisiev's Jagers in skirmish order in the vanguard, followed by everything else. For the French, Legrand holds a line at Jakubowo, with Castex's Chasseurs behind, and then Vedier further back in a second line ready to move up and support Legrand. Doumerac's Cuirassiers are offtable even further behind.

View from the right flank of the French.

And looking from Verdier's position miles north towards Jakubowo.

And now the battle, which doesn't actually need much commentary... 
The Russians repeatedly prepare attacks with artillery and skirmish fire and then send in the attack columns (and sometimes cavalry), while the French do their best to resist.

The French artillery eliminates a deploying Russian battery which is a good start, though the Russian batteries available still outnumber the available French four to one, and two to one once Verdier arrives in support.

Russian Hussars rout a shaken line unit and retire.

A Russian Jager unit routs a French line on the hill, but the two French batteries here stubbornly resist despite coming under intense skirmisher pressure.

With masses of artillery support, including heavies, the Russian Grenadiers storm into the first two sections of Jakobowo, and hold them for the rest of the battle, excepting a short lived counterattack from the French.

Even the Russian Cossacks get into action, managing to break a very disordered French Line on the French right.

With such a narrow front, it is difficult for the late arriving French Cuirassiers to be usefully employed. 

The French are holding onto the southern most sections of Jakobowo but suffering heavy casualties in order to secure the flanks of these sections.

Russians take attrition but damaged units fall back to rally.

The Russians fail to take all of Jakubowo but the French are at breaking point and so must withdraw (13 units lost to 4 for the Russians), so a Russian victory.


Good to have the Napoleonics back on the table again! A battle where it is challenging for the French to resist all the Russian artillery, which historically caused the French to decide to withdraw and give up  Jakubowo more quickly than Paul and I did!

Also see this worthy account of the action from the Russian perspective by Ion.


  1. A lovely looking game Mark. All that Russian artillery would be hard to resist.

  2. An impressive looking tabletop with lots of nicely painted toy soldiers. Very nice indeed 👏👏
    Well done all.

  3. Lovely to see your troops on the battlefield, sounds like tons of fun!
    Best Iain

  4. Another fabulous looking game of Napoleonics Mark. Even more impressive on such a narrow front—the troop density is imposing. The narrow front greatly aided the French defence, which would n doubt be overwhelmed a lot quick if flanks could be turned.
    Wonderful visual spectacle and a top report.
    Regards, James