Sunday, 23 December 2012
By the early 1800s, light infantry had a much greater role on the battlefield, at least in Napoleon’s forces. Many armies still saw light infantry as little more than auxiliary troops, choosing to favour the old, tried and tested tactics of massed volley fire and close formations. Napoleon, on the other hand, recognised the advantage flexibility conferred, and used light infantry extensively, to harass enemy lines to pieces, then closing up for a final rush.
In the Waterloo campaign the 4th regiment of cuirassiers was brigaded with the 1st in the 13th Division in Milhaud's IV Cavalry Corps. The regiment mustered some 314 officers and men in 3 squadrons, under the command of Colonel Habert. The regiment fought with distinction at Ligny and then was badly damaged during Ney's charges at Waterloo.