Sunday, April 1, 2012

Campaign Move 17

1200 to 1600 12 August 1813

Captain-General Copons arrives on the battlefield just after midday.   He joins General Elio and orders 2nd Spanish corps to advance over the bridge and support the British attack.

It is clear to Harispe that the day is lost, and he must take immediate action to avoid disaster.   He orders his corps to retreat towards Cambrils before the Spanish can cross the river Ebro and join the battle.

To cover this movement he orders his cavalry to advance once more and hold the enemy cavalry at bay.   The British immediately charge and rout the French lancers.   This rout breaks the morale of the nearby infantry, who have already suffered heavy casualties.   The rout spreads.

By mid afternoon the whole of 8th French corps has broken and is fleeing north towards Flix.  In doing so they have abandoned both their lines of supply to Cambrils and any hope of support from the approaching 7th French corps.

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