Military medicine of the Napoleonic wars.
While obviously fatal wound the unfortunate helped to die. French officer PON de Combe in the battle of Borodino saw the Polish officer: Exploding grenade cut his spine and his side, this terrible wound, it seemed, was caused by the sharp scythe . The pole begged me to finish it. De Combe was unable to fulfill the request of the wounded man, but gave him a gun. I have noticed, with what wild joy he seized the gun, and I was still at a distance of croup of the horse, he shot himself in the forehead.
Abraham Norov, the chronicler of the war of 1812, and during her seventeen-year artillery cadet, recalled another episode of the battle of Borodino: Fell at my feet one of the Rangers. With horror I saw that he had ripped off all over the face and frontal bone, and he clutched his convulsing brain. Shall I pin? told me standing near me Bombardier . Norov ordered to drag the soldier into the bushes order to finish off apparently young didn’t have the guts. (After a while most Norov-a severed foot.
In addition to wounds, and contusions. Baron de Marbo describes how at the battle of Eylau – tore the rear corner of his hat (dressed up like every aide in the nose forward): the Blow was the more terrible,that my hat was kept on a sturdy leather chinstrap. I was absolutely stunned. The blood flowed from my nose, ears and even eyes.
We must remember that the battlefield was then filled with not only people, but horses from fear and the smell of blood absolutely zverela. When all in the same battle of Eylau, the Russian infantry tried to stab with a bayonet, Marbo saved Baron his Mare Lisette, who rushed on the Russian, clutching his teeth in his face, in one fell swoop pulled his nose, lips, eyelids, ripped all the skin off the face so that it turned into a living skull, all red from the blood.
Wounded cold weapons swords, broadswords, lances often do not cause any harm to the wounded: apparently, it was not easy to cut or to stab a moving target and even myself being a horse. The Petersburg militia Rafail Zotov in his memoirs described how in the battle of Polotsk on 6 October 1812, he attempted to kill several French men at arms: the first two blows with the swords on the head but I did not fall, but the innocent with your sword defended, and I remember that one was wounded in the thigh, and the other poked spike in the side; I don’t know who they rewarded me for it with a pistol shot, then another, but one casual hit me in the neck and another in the leg. Then I fell, and then something blows and curses were showered on me like rain. I was wearing the coat, coat and sweatshirt, and on top of everything else pack. It was all chopped up in shinkovannoy cabbage, and with all strikes only two, even the head was a strong one in the hand of the insignificant, and the one with the horse poked me in the back with the point of his broadsword. All other beats don’t even punched my clothes . When Zotova examined by a physician, it was found that threat to life was only one blow to the head.
It would seem that very great must be the number of wounded with a bayonet it is believed that often (and even in 1812, almost always) the fate of the fight was decided by bayonets. However, this seems a romantic exaggeration. To go in arms, to go on bayonets, hit with hostility, this formula is found in the memoir of 1812 often, but how often bayonet attack led to the melee? The same Zotov describes the bayonet of the militia of the Bavarian infantry Polotsk: Enemy front is not resisted, wavered, and without waiting for us, went in all haste to retreat.
One of the reasons, forcing officers to command the retreat, was the need to maintain control of the troops to hold the line system, which in close combat inevitably broke up. Zotov describes how after about an hour after the attack, the militia took the fight went in with the bayonets of the enemy and frustration of the line it almost turned into a big trouble: 20 people of the Bavarians suddenly broke through our front. An officer’s sword was not equal to the weapons to resist their hostility.
However remained alive and after of bayonets: it is known that General Bonami, taken on the battery Rajewski, was all pricked with bayonets ( I saw him; his face was so mangled and bloodied that it was impossible to distinguish any single feature , wrote Nicholas Ants, in 1812, served as quartermaster). Andrzej Nagaevsky, one of those lancers, which in the eyes of Napoleon stormed the impregnable position of the Spaniards under Somosierra, falling with the dead horse, got 11 wounds with bayonets before it arrived, and also survived.
Even after more serious injuries with a minimum of means and opportunities have been cases amazing rescue. In the battle of Friedland, to the Colonel of the St. Petersburg Dragoon regiment Michael Beam buckshot tore down part of the skull. Colonel on the General opinion was obviously not long, but the doctors replaced the broken bones with silver plate, and Balk once returned to the regiment! Shocked the soldiers decided that the Colonel’s entire skull is silver bullet it is now not terrible. Silver plate partly saved Beam in 1812, when the battle near the place called the Thunders of the French bullet hit him in the head. But even after that Bulk again back in operation (!), participated in Foreign campaigns, and died in 1818 at the age of 54 years, that his biography is not bad.
Special history with injuries Mikhail Kutuzov. 24 Jul 1774 in a battle with the Turks near Alushta bullet, hitting him on the right side between the eye and the temple, came out on end in the same place on the other side of the face . Miraculously Kutuzov then not only not dead, but his eyes kept seeing. 18 Aug 1787, Kutuzov in a battle with went on a run of Ochakov from the Turks was again wounded in the head in the same place. In the book of Nikolai Troitsky field Marshal Kutuzov: myths and facts are the words of the Prince de Lin about Kutuzov: the General yesterday, he again received a wound in the head, and if not now, I must die tomorrow . But Kutuzov again survived and even recovered from the second wound faster instead of a year in six months. Famous words of chief surgeon of the Russian army Masso: I Must believe that fate appoints Kutuzov to something great, because he was still alive after two wounds, the mortal according to all rules of medical science.
Officers and generals with no hands or no eyes had a lot in all armies (Admiral Horatio Nelson and all had no hands, no eyes). Austrian count Neipperg conquered instead of Napoleon Marie-Louise, as well lost an eye in one battle.
But the legless officers in an era when all travel was conducted on horseback, was a rarity. The French is Louis Marie Joseph Maximilien Caffarelli du Falga. The leg he lost in the war in Europe (in some books, like in the battles with the army of Suvorov, however, dictated by Napoleon book of the Egyptian campaign , said that in Cambro-Maasai army). In the Egyptian campaign Caffarelli went on a wooden prosthesis, for which the soldiers called him the General’s Wooden leg . When in the beginning of the campaign the soldiers were discouraged by the heat, thirst, constant fighting, Caffarelli, wanting to cheer them up, talked about the beauty of the country, about the great effects of this conquest . One of the soldiers told him this: You well, you have one foot in France! and these words passed from camp to camp, and made to laugh all the camps . He might get the nickname General Wooden arm at the siege of Acre the bullet shattered his elbow and had to take the arm. But gangrene and, on 18 April 1799, Cafarelli died (many years later among the nameless French graves on the outskirts of Acre near the Bohai gardens, the remains of General recognize it by the absence of arms and legs). Dictated by Napoleon in the Egyptian campaign book about Caffarelli said, when dying, he requested that he read Voltaire’s Preface to the spirit of the Laws, which seemed very strange commander.
The Russian hero was more fortunate. Sergey Napatan even at the age of 17, during the assault of Ochakov in 1788, he received a severe wound, which he took the leg above the knee. In 1791, Napatan, ypravlaushiy yourself in St. Petersburg, retirement, met with the famous inventor Kulibin. In conversation Napatan like Kulibin said: Now, Ivan, you have a lot of different things viadril, and we, warriors, have to carry a rough piece of wood . Kulibin accepted the challenge and undertook to do the hero prosthesis: the world’s first mechanical leg, which allowed Nepecino to walk without a cane, sit down and stand up, and generally proved so effective that the Napatan remains in military service, although in an invalid command. In 1807 became the Napatan us Great Bow. In 1812, a retired Colonel of the Napatan had been a volunteer in the 24th Jaeger regiment, in which he distinguished himself in battle against the French troops, marching on Petersburg. Given command of the cavalry, Napatan raided the French and twice defeated them large units. In September 1812 Napatan was restored to service, and in October he received the rank of Colonel and with him was transferred to the life guards Semenov regiment, which was a big difference, usually an army Colonel could become a guard captain or a major. Napatan participated in the battles at Kulm, Leipzig, entered with a guard to Paris. Resigned in the rank of major-General. Did his soldiers Wooden leg unknown.
Although the first constructed practically suitable metal prosthesis, shibashiba in the knee joint, and implemented the principle of stability and neophodnost stump that is the difference, fabrication of high quality prostheses did not become mass. Moreover, developments Kulibina rumored to have been kidnapped and then brought considerable revenues to the European orthopedists.