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The Prussians contributed to the victory at Waterloo in 1815, where an alliance led by Prussia and England fought against the French led by Napoleon. The battle started at 13:00 when Napoleon fired off the first shot through his long ranged artillery. This is continued by the French assaulting the Anglo allies with Infantry and Cavalry attacks followed up by cannon fire. At 19:30 the Prussians successfully attack the French flank. This leads Napoleon to send in the old guard which then gets decimated. At 21:00 the French army is beaten and Napoleon is on the run chased by Prussians with also round up fleeing French soldiers. (“The Defeat”)Napoleon lost the battle of Waterloo due to Prussian intervention because the Prussians led by Bl?cher gave the Anglo-Allies led by Wellington a numbers advantage due to that that the 68 000 Anglo allies were outnumbered by the 73 000 French and they were less equipped than the french due to that they were inferior in artillery and number of guns they could equip a soldier with.
The French had a strategic disadvantage provided by the Prussians due too that the Prussians were able to successfully flank the French army. Napoleon made many physiological errors during the battle that can be attributed to the Prussians for example due too that Napoleon knew the Prussians were coming and he would have high disadvantage he took a great risk and send in the elite force of the French army the old guard which then got dedicated by the Anglo-Allies.Factors, why the French led by Napoleon lost the battle, was because they had the numerical disadvantage. The Prussians were directly involved in shifting the number advantage to the favor of the Anglo-Allies away from the French. At the beginning of the battle, the French outnumbered the Anglo-Allies by 73000 to 67000. (Barbero 60-61). In addition to that, the French were better equipped than the Anglo-Allies, the French had around 100 canons more than the anglo Allies. This disparity got cleared when the Prussians arrived. They brought 25,000 infantrymen, (“The Fifteen”) 3000 cavalry, and artillery consisting of 88 guns. (Barbero 60-61). This shifted the favor away from Napoleon onto the newly formed alliance consisting now of Prussian and Anglo-allies. This put France at a disadvantage because now the Alliance outnumbered the french 110000 to 73000. (Barbero 60-61).
This gave the Anglo allies a huge advantage due to that most battles of this time were won by the person that had better guns and artillery and more people to sacrifice. This Gave the allies an enormous advantage which led to their victory. A great reason why Napoleon lost the battle of Waterloo was that he had a lot of strategic disadvantages wich the Prussians provided. One of this strategic disadvantage is brought by the Prussians which recovered after their first defeat against the French. The Prussians are able to flank the French army which puts serious pressure on Napoleon, who send out 15000 men to stop the 40000 strong Prussian force (GREAT CAMPAIGNS 230). The French lose this encounter and at the end of the battle, the Prussians chew into the flank of the French army. (Clayton 432). Another strategic advantage the Prussians provide is not against the French but for their allies the anglo allies.( “Give me night or give me Blucher”Duke of Wellington) This quote was said by Wellington which underlines again the moral responsibility of the Prussians due to that when the Prussians arrived Wellington was almost certain that he would win and with the knowledge of the Prussian advance Wellington could make strategic decision not possible if he would have been backed in a corner which he was before the Prussian arrival. Afterward, Wellington was able to do more out of his position due to that he had more confidence and so did his troops who saw the Prussians advance and we’re sure that now they would win. This, of course, gave a huge advantage over the French which was now retreating. One of the main factors which led to the downfall of Napoleon is the physiological missteps that he takes which can be attributed to the Prussians.
On big factor why Napoleon lost is because of the terrain Wellington choose for the battle it was a wide field where it rained the night before this favored the defender in this case Wellington. This is because the mud slows down movement from cavalry and infantry but most importantly it hinders the movement of artillery. Due to that, the French were had more artillery than the anglo allies it significantly hindered them during the battle. The only reason why Napoleon just didn’t wait for the ground to dry up and decimate Wellingtons forces was the fact that he knew that the Prussians were coming and he knew that if they arrived and he hadn’t defeated the Anglo allies he would be at a dier disadvantage. “for Wellington would be unlikely to attack until the Prussians were at hand in force, whereupon the French would be so outnumbered as to make defeat certain.” (GREAT CAMPAIGNS 214).This leads to the second point why the Prussians were essential at the battle of Waterloo. The second point is that due to the phycological pressure the Prussians put on Napoleon he made mistakes. “might break Wellington … in the process find the Prussians smashing into his army from the rear”(GREAT CAMPAIGNS 231).
Due to that, he needed to speed things up he took huge gambles one of these includes sending the old guard into battle without good recon and well knowing that if the old guard fell it would completely demoralize his own men. But due to the Prussian advance, he sends them in and then they got decimated by a clever move by Wellington by hiding a chunk of his army.
After the French saw this the battle was over with the Prussians on their flank and the anglo allied moving in at the front Napoleon knew it was over and ordered that the cannons shall fire upon the Anglo-Allies well knowing he would hit his own men. (“The Defeat” 42-45). When he tried to flee and try to build a new army the Prussians captured him and turned him over to the British preventing another war from happening. All these factors led to the defeat of Napoleon and the end of an era. He was brought down by a coalition of countries without the collaboration of countries against a common enemy it would be likely that the Napoleonic. One big part of this coalition was the Prussians who provided the numerical advantage another big part the Prussians contributed was the strategic advantage including destroying Napoleon’s flank and providing moral support to Wellington and his troops.
The last important part the Prussians contributed at the battle of Waterloo was the physiological factor this includes pushing Napoleon on fighting on Wellington’s terms and pushing Napoleon in making tactical mistakes including sending to little troops to stop the Prussians risking his flank, sending in the old guard without scouting beforehand. All these factors had to come together to beat Napoleon without the Prussians the Anglo-Allies surely would have lost the battle of Waterloo.
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