Unit Structure And Strength

Both cavalry and infantry regiments were organised in brigades as a tactical group with the senior Colonel usually being the brigade commander. Batde orders were given to the brigade commanders, who deployed their men according to die battle plan set out by their

commander. Henry Hexham commented that the Dutch Army divided its infantry 'into three parts called Brigadoes or Tercias, each of them having a several name, to witt, the Vantguard, the Battell, & the Reereguard'. In the Dutch Army these brigades were formed one alongside the other so that each had regiments in each of the three lines. The objective was, as the English military author John Cruso wrote, to ensure that each unit 'shall be seconded by those of their own squadron, or division, which will give them more courage and assurance'. The Swedish Army also organised their infantry in brigades for batde but deployed them differently. As the illustration shows, a Swedish brigade was not split between the two battle lines, each brigade forming part of one line.

The preferred strength of a battalion in the Dutch service was 'accounted to be 500 pikes & Musketteires, that is, 25 files of Pikes, and 25 files of Musketteires, or more or lesse of the one or the other, as they fall out', the depth of a file in the Dutch service being ten men. In the Dutch Army a battalion was sometimes separated into two or more divisions. These divisions were usually drawn up in pairs one alongside the other because 'two of them being joyned neere one another, can best second, and relieve each other'. The Earl of Essex followed this practice with his own regiment at Edgehill. By the 1630s the Imperial Army had adopted a style of deployment based upon Dutch and Swedish models


+1 0

Post a comment