Battle of Nachod
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|Battle of Náchod|
Cavalry clash at the Battle of Nachod by Richard Knötel
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|Commanders and leaders|
|Casualties and losses|
The Battle of Nachod (or Náchod) on 27 June 1866 was the first major action of the
Prussian Second Army, invading
To counter the danger of the Prussians flanking his army, during the evening June 26, Benedek finally decided to send Ramming's VI Corps to Nachod to block the passes. Benedek's orders were only received by Ramming at 1:30 AM on June 27. The first Austrian troops started up at 3:30 AM, the bulk of the corps started at 5:00 AM, without having eaten.
The King’s Grenadiers now came down the slope over the bodies of Hertwegh’s men and occupied Wenzelsberg. At 10:45 AM a new Austrian brigade (Jonak) arrived and a fearful struggle ensued over the churchyard. The grenadiers were driven out of it but held on to most of the village for two hours while the rest of the 9th Division arrived.
A third Austrian brigade (Rosenzweig's) appeared, and this time it had unmistakable orders to take Vysokov. As the famous Viennese
Hoch-und-Deutschmeister Regiment, the last fighting vestige of the old Teutonic Order, burst into the town, Colonel Louis
At 1:00 PM Ramming decided to untangle by escaping forward and he committed his final brigade - Waldstätten's - to clear the woods around Kleny, pivot on Rosenzweig's left and take the town, and then turn Steinmetz's flank in order to push the Prussians back in to the pass. Using their numerically superior 42 gun artillery strength - the bulk of the Austrian guns were still struck in traffic - to pummel Waldstätten, a Prussian regiment attacked Rosenzweig in Vaclavice and a fresh regiment flanked Waldstätten's columns. At 2:00 PM, having spent all his reserve, Ramming commanded a retreat to Skalice, where he united with his artillery batteries to form an 80 gun grand battery and took up position behind a railway embankment.
Steinmetz elected not to follow up the Austrians but decided to concentrate his scattered units at the heights.