Thursday, August 16, 2012

Battle of Smolensk III - 17th August

Battle of Smolensk
The 17th saw a great deal of confused fighting in the suburbs, as the three French Corps attempted to storm the city, but for all their gallantry the French proved incapable of penetrating the main defenses, although their guns were pounding the houses of the Old City into rubble or blazing ruins.  Doctorov clung grimly to his main positions, and when dusk fell the French had little to show for their pains apart from 10,000 casualties.  The Russians lost between 12-14,000 men during the two days' fighting.

~ D. Chandler, The Campaigns of Napoleon, p. 786

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