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"Did the Black Duke go to Spain?" Topic

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Personal logo Artilleryman Supporting Member of TMP10 Jan 2021 8:48 a.m. PST

I was wondering if the Duke of Brunswick accompanied his troops to Spain after 1809. I can find out about his actions in Germany in 1809 and the house he bought in England when he escaped there and the next thing seems to be his return to Brunswick in 1814. Does anyone know what he was up to from 1810 to 1814? Historically, can I put a figure of the Duke on a Spanish battlefield?

Nine pound round10 Jan 2021 10:05 a.m. PST

Check Oman's book on Wellington's army in Spain, would be my advice. He would be too prominent a figure to go unmentioned there. I don't know that I have ever seen him mentioned as being in Spain in that or any other source. He certainly didn't command a large body of troops, and the Peninsula of 1809-1813 was not a place that tended to attract foreign tourists, so my best guess would be that you can use him only as a "what if" character.

Whirlwind10 Jan 2021 12:40 p.m. PST

I can find out about his actions in Germany in 1809 and the house he bought in England when he escaped there and the next thing seems to be his return to Brunswick in 1814.

The house buy (of Belmont House) was in 1811 and he seems to have returned to Germany in 1813, so 1812 would be the year. He isn't mentioned in Wellington's despatch from Salamanca link so perhaps he did not go, or at least didn't stay long if he did.

Korvessa10 Jan 2021 12:49 p.m. PST

My dictionary of the Napoleonic Wars only says he lived in England & Portugal during that time.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP10 Jan 2021 1:21 p.m. PST

Pretty sure he didn't. Wellington was complaining about the senior officers of the Brunswick Jaegers without ever mentioning him, and if he'd had any sort of command he'd have shown up in Oman. Very hard to prove a negative, of course.

But isn't wargaming about "what ifs?" Give the man a brigade.

Delort10 Jan 2021 2:13 p.m. PST

The Duke didn't go to Spain; he remained in London until his return to Brunswick after the French were evicted and the Kingdom of Westphalia collapsed at the very end of 1813. No Black Duke on the battlefields of Spain I'm afraid.

Though that doesn't stop you sending him out there if you want to!

Personal logo Artilleryman Supporting Member of TMP10 Jan 2021 2:42 p.m. PST

Thanks for all the information everyone. Seems to me that His Grace may make an unrecorded visit to his troops in the Peninsula.

Korvessa10 Jan 2021 4:40 p.m. PST

Perhaps he went incognito

MightyOwl12 Jan 2021 1:00 a.m. PST

According to Louis Spehr's biography he spent the whole time in London. Bringing up his children, arguing with his family over the legacy of his brother Georg and corresponding with German nationalists.

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