Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Regiment de St. Pouanges

With a resounding "crash!" Steve drives through the painting funk (see previous post) and - at last - sits down to paint this latest unit to join the ranks of His Majesty King Louis XIV...

I've always enjoyed painting horses, so if there was any way to get me out of the current painting funk a cavalry unit would be the one to do it... so it was, that after a pleasant early morning sail on a fairly sunny bank holiday Monday* I sat myself down to apply paint to metal..

These guys are the result, and I'm quite happy with them... Some of the saddle cloths have a slightly shaky edging but nothing that detracts from their undoubted air of superiority. These guys very definitely have their chins in the air!

They represent the Regiment de St. Pouanges, who were just one of the 100 odd regiments of horse that Louis had in his armies at one time or the other, and I have been able to find out very little about them at all (though it was interesting to look!). They aren't even mentioned in Grant (and come to that neither are the next regiment on my list) so distinctly anonymous..

What I do know however, is that they are listed as being present at Blenheim, where they were two squadrons strong (so about 100 men), and were brigaded with three other cavalry regiments; the Regiment de Orleans, the Regiment de Montreval (click here) and the Regiment de Ligonday in the Marquis de Silly's brigade of Marechal de Camp, the Duc d'Humeries's division. I have some deep diving to do to figure out if they were present at any of the other major/minor battles of the period...

Figures are 15mm from Roundway and have been sat in my painting box for quite a while as in the metal they didn't seem to be too good, having painted them though I think they look considerably better. They were quite "flashy" though and required a fair amount of cleaning... & the tricorn is ridiculous - way too small! I now only have Ligonday to do to complete the whole of the brigade...


* ..and the sailing? Lovely! A couple of fantastic trips out recently.. previously mentioned in the post on Marlborough's runners I did have the day off a week or so ago for my first solo trip - the fishing road was wielded in anger (caught nothing but I did get to reacquaint myself with rag worms - blechhh!). Most importantly a lot of confidence was built up; I can handle the boat on my own, and especially under sail... bodes well for a longer trip later in the summer. Even better though, I also caught my first brief sight of one of the colony of seals in the harbour - there's only 15 or so, but amazing to see one...

Distance: 6 miles
Wind: light (force 1 or 2)

The trip referred to above, however, was on bank holiday Monday. Not good tides as the high was at 8 in the morning, and at best I can only sail from two to three hours either side of that before the mud takes over from the water! Either way I dragged littl'est person from her pit at 7 for company, and we were motoring for the main channel by 8... very light winds at that time of the morning, but with a full flask of tea, and some good chat with my youngest and the time just flew by. Ace day....

Distance: 6 miles (20.5 miles year to date)
Wind: v. light (force 1 just 2 at times)


  1. The unit looks good . . . were French squadrons only 50 strong?

    Sounds like a great day with your youngest. Quality time indeed.

    -- Jeff

  2. What rules do you use for WSS ?

  3. Jeff - that's a cracking question... & according to my trusty Chandler there's no definitive answer. What he says is that the squadron was not really a formal organisation, it was an ad hoc grouping of troops of horse. It varied between 2 & 4 troops, and the numbers in the troops varied but were about the 50 strong. In the French army though they organised by company rather than troop and these comprised about 30-40 men - with 3 or 4 companies to the squadron, 3 squadrons to the regiment.

    Best guess, if the numbers quoted are correct, I would say that on the day St. Pouange probably numbered three companies but as was typical in a war/campaign situation were very understrength..

    David - I use a (free) set written by a chap called Will McNally for the Seven Years War, but modified by me for the WSS. All the details of where to get them, and the modifications, are on my WSS project page - there's a link from mt main blog page, or go to

  4. Steve,
    Nice looking figures as always. The French horse were feared throughout Europe before Blenheim and should have a look of martial superiority that vanishes after the battle.
    I also agree with your assessment on squadrons. The downside to that is then trying to assess how many troopers there were when all the obs give a number of men and a number of squadrons but not broken down by regiment. I try and stick to a 6 figure squadron for my horse so that each regiment has three.
    Try a lure for the fishing rather than lug worms. Lug worms work for beach casting but out in open water fish are attracted to bright flashy things more.

  5. Very nice little unit. Unlike you I hate painting horses so the cavalry contingents in my armies are always below what they should be. Perhaps 15mm cvalry may be quicker as there is a lot less horse to paint!