1760 - Siege of Breslau
The siege lasted from July 30 to August 3, 1760
At the beginning of his campaign in Silesia in 1760, field marshal Loudon forced a Prussian force under lieutenant-general Heinrich August de la Motte Fouqué to surrender on June 23 at the 2nd battle of Landeshut. He then besieged and stormed the fortress of Glatz on July 26 1760. He then immediately sent general Draskowitz towards Breslau (actual Wrocław) to besiege the town and ordered general Nauendorf to march from Neumarkt (actual Środa Śląska) to Lissa (actual Wrocław-Leśnica). The same day, a Russian army under the command of count Saltykov quitted Posen (actual Poznań) and marched towards Breslau to make a junction with Loudon's corps.
Meanwhile, the Prussian army of prince Henri also advanced towards Breslau. Thus, the Austrians were besieging the town while a large Russian army marched to reinforce them and a Prussian army tried to relieve the town.
Description of events
On July 31, Breslau was completely invested. Loudon vainly summoned the governor of the place, major-general Tauenzien. In the evening 3 Austrian batteries opened on Breslau, causing several fires. In fact, Tauenzien had only 3,000 men to guard the long walls of the town which were not in very good condition. The same day, prince Henri marched in 3 columns to Linden (probably Lipka in Nowa Sól county) while he pushed Werner to Slawe (actual Sława) with 9 bns and 22 sqns.
On August 1, the Russian army marched to Kobylin while its vanguard reached Rawitsch (actual Rawicz). Saltykov then unexpectedly decided to rest his troops. The same day, prince Henri passed the Oder at Glogau (actual Głogów) and encamped at Gramschutz (actual Grębocice).
On August 2, the Austrians summoned the governor of Breslau once more with the same result. The same day, prince Henri reached Parchwitz (actual Prochowice). Informed of his advance, Loudon to abandon his project.
On August 3, Loudon raised the siege as prince Henri was approaching with his army. Indeed, prince Henri had marched 145 km in 3 days from Glogau! His rapid reaction saved Breslau.
This article is essentially a compilation of texts from the following books which are now in the public domain:
- Jomini, baron de, Traité des grandes opérations militaires, Vol. 3, 2nd ed., Magimel, Paris, 1811, pp. 277-279