Thursday 2 May 2013

French Infantrie de Marine 1813

French Infantrie Artillerie de Marine - 1813

Finally got some Battalions out for the French Infantrie de Marine for Leipzig 1813.

After digging around for resources on these guys ... and finding the usual mix of conflicting details from different sources, I settled on this "interpretation", which I reckon fits the feel of these units well.  See what you think.

All of the line troops have greatcoats, and are still equipped in bicornes. Note that all the leather cross belts are black as well.

All pompoms are red, and to distinguish them from regular troops in greatcoats, they have a little brass anchor insignia on the left sleeve.

Finally, the flag is standard French tricolor, with a gold anchor symbol. OK, I made that up, but it works for me :)

For each Battalion, they are capped at 8 figures strength. 2 full bases of 3 figs (2 coys or 1 understrength division), and 1 base of 2 figs. The 2 fig base works as a skirmish stand for the Battalion.

Each Battalion has 1 commander. Most of these are the 'Chef du Battailon' figure from the excellent Black Hat 15mm range. The rest of the figures are from Lancashire Games's new releases for the Revolutionary Wars.

These 2 different brands work really well together. They are not 18mm - more like big 15mm's.

Some Battalion Cadre include an assortment of other random figures from the parts box. Ive made sure that the uniforms on the extra figures are anything but "regulation" as well.

The Infantrie de Marine were pulled together for service on the front during the 1813 campaign, as part of the push to rebuild the Grande Armee.

The Battalions making up the Marine Infantry were collected from various sources - Coastal artillery units, Marine infantry, sailors, and whatever else could be found.

They surprised their army commanders as being tough, disciplined, and calm under fire. Next to the huge number of conscript troops that made it to the front in 1813, the Infantrie de Marine and Artillerie de Marine Battalions in comparison were able to form line without issue under heavy fire.

In game terms, they are rated as follows :

Training & Morale :   Elite
Fire Discipline:               Regular
Skirmish:                    1 coy open order, rated poor.
                                     No full-skirmish capability.
Street Fighting:        Excellent

That makes them significantly better than the bulk of the other troops on either side, especially in under fire and in close combat.

A whole stack of them now ... in no particular formation.

I like this one - non-regulation flag (with anchor), non-regulation standard bearer in Colpack and red pants. (I think he came out of a Nassau command pack).

The drummer above in a borrowed Marines of the Guard style tunic, with gold braid and swallows nests !

Lancashire have some excellent new Napoleonic Generals sets wearing capes and greatcoats. Just the thing to command the Marine Brigades.

Bit hard to see in the other photos - but I have tried to make the shades of blue different between all figures, and use a different shade between trousers and greatcoats.

More red pants madness. Patrolling the river bank.

Clearing the woods.

12 Battalions in the box. Another project done ;)


  1. Nice figures! However they do not were tre 'marines' but 'artillerymen' pressed into infantry service. They formed the backbone of the Marmont's Corps

  2. Thanks mate - applied the change to the title.

    J Elting has a good write up about them in "Swords around the Throne", which details how they ended up on the battlefield, and how they ended up with blue greatcoats. They are infamous for being mistaken for Imperial Guard by the opposing allies. 90% coastal artillery, but with anyone else nearby pressed into service at all.

    Not the same thing as "Marines" in the same we we use the word today I guess.

    I cant find the reference to the black leather straps now, but I do recall reading that somewhere. I notice most people paint them up with white cross straps .... the black sets them apart nicely.

    I should be done with the computer interface next. (I know .... its been an awful long wait !!) Lot of polishing up happening with it in the last few weeks, and its looking super awesome at the moment. Cant wait to release it so you can all have a play.

    1. Great stuff! I love these units. The dark blue overcoats are correct, and I think you are right about the black belts as we;ll - I'm pretty sure Funken shows them that way, and I had a unit of them eons ago with black leather work. I really should add a unit nor two of them to the list for my own "1813" troops.