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HistoryDude

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The fact that the decision was 361 (362?)-360 worries me. That's barely a majority.

Also, sparing the King would lead Royalist causes to gradually peter out without the King's support. Now, there's nothing to stop the King's heir from being backed by Royalists, and there isn't actually a strong Republican movement like in OTL with Napoleon's campaigns.

I wonder if Suchet might become a parallel Napoleon, actually?

Also, is Lafayette a prisoner of the Austrians in-gam? Or did you just not want him executed (*cough* due to Hamilton *cough*)?
 

Henry v. Keiper

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Talleyrand is in London convincing the king to outlaw whoopee cushions.

Also, is Suchet in the Italian campaign right now? If so, he does seem to be slowly becoming a parallel Napoleon. Especially with much of this following the OTL.
 

Le Jones

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Now in reality this would cause uproar overseas, but I wonder how EU4 / you will play it. The possibility of royalist insurrection (Vendee?) must also be considered.

Gripping stuff.
 

AxolotlKnight

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Mar 16, 2019
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And has the revolution created a martyr?

Perhaps. While the monarchies around the world may miss him, France will most likely have no such sentimentality.

The fact that the decision was 361 (362?)-360 worries me. That's barely a majority.

Also, sparing the King would lead Royalist causes to gradually peter out without the King's support. Now, there's nothing to stop the King's heir from being backed by Royalists, and there isn't actually a strong Republican movement like in OTL with Napoleon's campaigns.

I wonder if Suchet might become a parallel Napoleon, actually?

Also, is Lafayette a prisoner of the Austrians in-gam? Or did you just not want him executed (*cough* due to Hamilton *cough*)?

The sparing of the King may well have led to the weakening of the Royalist cause, however that doesn't really matter to the Montagnards. For them the King was such an intolerable symbol of the centuries of oppression under the Ancien Regime that they would say anything to justify their desire have him executed.

The reason a made Lafayette a prisoner of the Austrians was because around this time he was imprisoned by them in some capacity. Also it made easier to explain why he wasn't a General for France in the game. Aaaaaaand maybe it was a bit of Hamilton bias creeping in. :D

As for Suchet, well, we will have to wait and see...;)

Talleyrand is in London convincing the king to outlaw whoopee cushions.

Also, is Suchet in the Italian campaign right now? If so, he does seem to be slowly becoming a parallel Napoleon. Especially with much of this following the OTL.

Talleyrand is too busy trying to explain to King George III that his tree is in fact not growing beef on it's branches. Also he might be trying to expand his fake dog poo business empire...

So at around this time, Suchet is not leading the Italian Campaign. This chapter kind of runs parallel to Chapter 2, so he is busy in Germany.

Now in reality this would cause uproar overseas, but I wonder how EU4 / you will play it. The possibility of royalist insurrection (Vendee?) must also be considered.

Gripping stuff.

I will be covering how things change when it comes to the war next update! Lets just say it was a bit unexpected to say the least...
 
Chapter 4: The War Intensifies

AxolotlKnight

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Mar 16, 2019
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Chapter IV: The War Intensifies


1596050572834.png


The death of King Louis XVI sent shockwaves across Europe. For the first time since the execution of King Charles I of England, a European monarch had been executed by the will of his subjects. The Republic was condemned by courts across Europe as nobles across the world began to fear the possibility of the same happening to them. Even France’s only ally, the United States of America, was appalled by what they saw as “needless barbarity.” France itself was split on the issue, with the republicans in the east and in the cities celebrating, whilst the Royalist sympathisers in the west and the countryside seething. To make matters worse, the Montagnards and the Girondists had begun fresh bickering over the rise of food prices. For Consul Bouissieu the only thing that seemed to be going well was the war.

In late September 1792, the French Armée d'Italie crossed the border into Savoy and began its invasion of Northern Italy. Numbering around 25,000, the goal of the task force was spread the revolution’s ideals and to counter the Austrian threat in the region. The leadership of this campaign was given to Jean Jaques Duquense, a former Colonel in the Royal French Army, before joining Lafayette’s national guard in 1789. An adequate, if unremarkable strategist, he had been lifted to the title of General due to the shortage of trained and experienced officers in the Republican Army. The initial invasion proved to be a success when Duquense crushed the Sardinian-Piedmontese army outside the town of Valperga, ending the Savoyard resistance just as it had begun. While King Victor Amadeus III of Savoy fled to the island of Sardinia, the rest of his lands on mainland Italy fell to the French. The victorious Duquense marched into Turin like a victorious Roman general, whilst the nobility of Savoy who had been left behind watched in horror.



1596050796243.png

Jean Jaques Duquense, General of the Armée d'Italie


The local nobility had little to fear at the time, for while France was a republic, Duquense was not what you would call an ardent republican. He had joined the cause of the revolutionaries when it looked it was obvious that the tide was turning against the King. Whilst he was close to several Girondists, he despised the Jacobins, who he saw as barbaric rabble-rousers who more interested in glory than true republican virtue. This made him unpopular with a few of his subordinates, who saw him as an opportunist at best, and a royalist at worst. Following his capture of Savoy and Piedmont, Duquense launched his assault on the Republic of Genoa, which fell without much conflict in November 1792. Despite his biases, Duquense was commanded by his superiors in Paris to form a revolutionary government made up of moderates and Jacobins that would begin to enact revolutionary reforms in the country.

It would be on the 6th of December 1792 when Duquense and his 25,000 strong army marched into Austrian controlled Lombardy. With most of the Austrian army in Southern Germany dealing with Suchet’s invasion, the relatively undefended Austrian lands in Italy seemed very enticing for a career general like Duquense. After seizing the towns of Magenta and Corsico, Duquense laid siege to Milan, which had been barricaded by the Austrian garrison. With winter setting in and provisions depleting, Duquense prayed for a quick victory. It would prove not to be, for the Austrian defenders were far more tenacious than first thought, forcing the French to settle for a long and protracted siege. It would be during the siege that Duquense would receive news of Suchet’s withdrawal from Germany and the execution of King Louis, both of which he was not pleased to have heard. To make matters worse, there was news that Austrian forces were amassing in the Alps in preparation for a possible counterattack in Italy. Despite pleas from his junior officers, Duquense refused to lift the siege, for his hunger for a prize such as Milan was too great.

On the morning of the 29th of January 1793, French scouts spotted an Austrian army marching out from the Alps and into the northern Lombard town of Lecco, which was barely a day’s march from Milan. Though the intense frozen fog coming from Lake Como shrouded the view, the scouts estimated that there were around 25,000 men, the same amount as what Duquense had brought with him. The confident General decided to stand his ground, ordering most of his men to form up to the north of Milan around the village of Bresso. At around 0700 AM on the 31st of January, the Austrian army reached Bresso, and it was abundantly clear that the scouts had been wrong in their estimations. Instead of 25,000 men, the Austrians had around 50,000, and they were led by Austria’s best general, Archduke Charles. It was reported that Duquense began to panic as he saw the large Austrian host, and quickly became hysterical, which had a huge knock-on effect on morale. As his Lieutenants attempted to try and get the general to regain his composure, the Austrians launched their attack, sending volley after volley of cannon fire at the French lines as their massive columns of infantry marched forward. The French, tired and weak after a long siege in the freezing rain and snow, crumpled after the first exchange of musket fire, with many attempting to flee back into friendly territory. The Austrian cavalry gave them little chance at that, with thousands of Frenchmen being cut down by the sabres of Austrian, Hungarian, and Czech hussars. Thousands more French soldiers simply surrendered. As for Duquense and his staff, they managed to escape with the skin of their teeth, fleeing into French-controlled Piedmont with little more than a thousand men.



236850_20200609110411_1.png

The Battle of Bresso, 31st of January 1793

Jean Jacques Duquense was immediately stripped of his rank by the military high command and was placed under court-martial. The three lieutenants under him were given promotions by Carnot, who stressed that they had shown enough capability as to at least be worth of propping up the struggling officer corps. The names of these men were Firmin Duquense, Jean Jacques Duquense’s cousin, Augustine de Luynes, a member of an impoverished noble family who had joined the Jacobin Club before becoming an officer, and Phillipe d’Aulnay, a former priest turned military man who was credited as the real mastermind behind the victory at Valperga. These three would be the latest of a series of promotions carried out by the French Army, which was an attempt by Carnot to encourage a more meritocratic army structure that rewards talented officers rather than those of noble birth. In the National Convention, the news was taken well, with the Girondists attacking the military for their poor planning and leadership, whilst the Montagnards aimed at the Consul, saying that he had allowed imbeciles to control the French Army. The radical Jacobins of the Montagnard faction went a step further, proclaiming that General Duquense’s actions were that of a counter-revolutionary and a traitor.

The news of Duquense’s disastrous defeat at Bresso pushed Consul Bouissieu to organize fresh French offensives to distract from the absolute failure that was the Italian Campaign. He drew up plans for two major campaigns into enemy territory. The first, and largest, would be a new campaign in the Low Countries to conquer Austrian controlled Belgium. To lead this, he chose Charles Francois Dumouriez, a seasoned General whose career spanned back to the Seven Years War. The second campaign would be a second attempt to strike into Southern Germany, which would be led by General Suchet once again, much to the chagrin of Bouissieu, who had bowed to popular demand by the general public, who loved Suchet after his victories in Baden. Each general would be assigned 60,000 men, with the possibility of a further 40,000 men as reinforcements. This would be the first time Carnot’s logistical reforms would be tested.



1596051392390.png

Charles Francois Dumouriez, General of the Armée du Nord

The two campaigns, nicknamed Bouissieu’s Battles by the Jacobin newspapers, would be initially successful. Baden, still reeling from Suchet’s first offensive, quickly collapsed, and by the 10th of February, all of Baden was under French occupation. The situation in the Low Countries was similar, with Dumouriez easily defeating the 30,000 strong Austrian army at the Battle of Waregam, and then quickly capturing the city of Ghent. All seemed to be going well until the 11th of March when General Dumouriez was killed during an attempt to storm the city of Antwerp. Despite the severe setback, the French were still victorious thanks in large part to Dumouriez’s second in command, Lieutenant-Colonel Louis-Nicolas Davout, who had taken up the duty of command in the heat of battle. An impressed Carnot advised Consul Bouissieu to promote the young colonel to full status of general, sighting his impressive leadership skills and the dire need for new commanders as a reason. The beleaguered Consul accepted, and Davout became the latest edition to the French roster of generals.



1596051486394.png

Louis-Nicolas Davout, General of the Armée du Nord and the youngest General in the French Army
 

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HistoryDude

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The fall of Belgium and Baden is good news...

Also, why’s everybody attacking General Duquense? He was outnumbered 2-1 and facing someone renowned as a great commander. The correct course of action in that situation is to retreat. Sure, he panicked - but he also almost managed to retreat... Standing and fighting will get many men needlessly killed - and the fact that the French Consul is promoting those whose engaged in that behavior promotes doing it - which will lead to a needless loss of life - and could destroy France entirely.

Still, shame about Lombardy.
 

stnylan

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That is ... not a good result. To lose a battle might be careless. To lose an army ...
 

The Number 9

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Duquense was a traitor. He should have retreated way before. His men told him too, and he choose to not listen. His motivations were clearly dubious.

This is a tragedy in Lombardy.


Nice AAR, I just read everything so far. This is a fascinating period, even if EU4 does not portray it well. You manage to make an interesting story with it.
 

AxolotlKnight

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Mar 16, 2019
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The fall of Belgium and Baden is good news...

Also, why’s everybody attacking General Duquense? He was outnumbered 2-1 and facing someone renowned as a great commander. The correct course of action in that situation is to retreat. Sure, he panicked - but he also almost managed to retreat... Standing and fighting will get many men needlessly killed - and the fact that the French Consul is promoting those whose engaged in that behavior promotes doing it - which will lead to a needless loss of life - and could destroy France entirely.

Still, shame about Lombardy.

France is in a desperate situation and is fighting for it's life. In the eyes of revolutionaries, failure is not an option.


That is ... not a good result. To lose a battle might be careless. To lose an army ...

By far France's biggest defeat. Let's just hope that that Suchet and Davout can rally the nation.

Duquense was a traitor. He should have retreated way before. His men told him too, and he choose to not listen. His motivations were clearly dubious.

This is a tragedy in Lombardy.


Nice AAR, I just read everything so far. This is a fascinating period, even if EU4 does not portray it well. You manage to make an interesting story with it.

Thank you, and I hope you enjoy my ride through the French Revolution.
 

DensleyBlair

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An endlessly fascinating period woefully underexplored in EU4, so really cool to see an project that captures it so well. I'm just reading through the updates now, and excited to follow along going forward.
 

Specialist290

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I've had this one on the back burner for a bit, but I've finally gotten current. Hoping to see more soon :)

Having been caught in his situation before myself, I can feel a little inkling of sympathy for Duquense in desiring to continue the siege, but losing an entire army on the toss of the dice like that is inexcusable, especially when the Revolution needs every man it can get to hold the line.
 

AxolotlKnight

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Mar 16, 2019
134
68
An endlessly fascinating period woefully underexplored in EU4, so really cool to see an project that captures it so well. I'm just reading through the updates now, and excited to follow along going forward.

Thanks for reading, and welcome aboard!

I've had this one on the back burner for a bit, but I've finally gotten current. Hoping to see more soon :)

Having been caught in his situation before myself, I can feel a little inkling of sympathy for Duquense in desiring to continue the siege, but losing an entire army on the toss of the dice like that is inexcusable, especially when the Revolution needs every man it can get to hold the line.

Thanks for giving this a try!

Yeah Duquense made the misfortune of making a mistake during a war that will decide France's fate. In such a situation failure is not an option.
 

AxolotlKnight

Second Lieutenant
Mar 16, 2019
134
68
So the next chapter should be out either tonight or tomorrow morning, I am currently in the phase of making one final pass to correct any errors or add more context to events. Thank you for all your support, I still can't believe people read my stuff an like it.

I just wanted to say that with work fully reopened, I will have a little less time than usual to write, but I am still committed to do so. I also want to note that with the release of CK3 round the corner, I may begin writing an AAR if I end up enjoying it. Obviously that means my attentions will be split between this and that, but my intention is to write both side by side (let's see if I am able to keep to that :p).
 
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DensleyBlair

The Welsh Jack Grealish (they/them)
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Jul 29, 2012
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but my intention is to write both side by side (let's see if I am able to keep to that :p)

Fateful words, but it's entirely possible. Good luck to you! :)