Instead of issuing orders I decided to produce instead a long-winded Army Disposition in traditional Austrian Style. So here is the one for Sacile...
The Army of Inner Austria will continue to advance in order to establish itself along the river Tagliamento. There the army will halt and form a defensive cordon and await events in Bavaria. Every effort will be made to stimulate uprisings among the local population against the French and their puppet Kingdom if Italy. Rumblings of this are already evident in the Tyrol, where local disturbances are already taking place against their hated Bavarian overlords.
The events at Pordenone 15th April
On the 15th April, our Avantgarde force under FML Frimont clashed with a French force at the village of Pordenone. After a brief action our forces surrounded the village, drove off the French cavalry and took all the infantry prisoner, including the Eagle and the Colonel. Our forces continued their advance and FML Frimont occupied the villages of Palse, Porcia and Talponedo, Also, a second light force under Oberstleutnant Volkmann, was despatched to cover the right of the army. Two infantry companies of this force occupied Castello d'Aviano with its important bridge over the Torrente Artagna.
The evening of the 15th April and dawn of the 16th April
As the Avantgarde forces of FML Frimont and Oberstleutnant Volkmann took up their advanced positions the remainder of the army laagered around Pordenone. Our cavalry scouts have assessed enemy strength at five divisions of infantry and some light cavalry. The overnight heavy rains did not unduly disturb our forces. The forces of FML Wolfskeel will march out overnight to Rovereto, ready to commence their march at dawn towards Fontanfredda.
Army Orders Dawn, 16th April
The VIII Korps of FML Chasteler
The forces of FML Chasteler are directed to defend the villages of Porcia and Talponedo to their utmost ability. The village of Palse is considered to be an advanced post that can be abandoned under pressure. The Korps is also directed to occupy the village of Ronche.
In addition to his existing forces, FML Chasteler will be supported by GM von Reisner who will take command of VIII Korps artillery and add the 4th, 5th and 6th Position batteries from IX Korps and pace himself under the command of FML Chasteler. This force is intended to allow VIII Korps to reduce the village of Fontanfredda in preparation for assault by IX Korps.
The general role of VIII Korps is to absorb and repulse any French attacks from either Sacile or up road towards Palse.
IX Korps of FML I. Guylai
The IX Korps of FML Guylai is to leave Pordenone in the direction of Rovereto. This force is then to turn in the direction of Fontanfredda along the road from Rovereto. This force is to take position before Fontanfredda with its left wing on Ronche which is to be occupied by FML Chasteler.
The village of Fontanfredda is assumed to have been heavily bombarded by the artillery of FML Chasteler. If it has not time may be taken to allow this to satisfactorily occur. FML Guylai is then directed to commence an assault either side of Fontanfredda with the aim of surrounding the place. The village is only to be directly assaulted if casualties are not expected to be prohibitive.
FML Guylai is to take the Avantgarde forces of Oberstleutnant Volkmann under command as soon as contact is made. This force is directed to cover your right flank.
You are directed to surrender your three Position batteries in Korps Reserve to GM Reisner.
The Brigade of GM von Altensteig is to remain under the hand of GdeK Erzherzog Johann as army reserve.
The forces of GM Kalnassy and GM Splenyi di Mikaldy are to be despatched OVERNIGHT to Rovereto, ahead of the main body of troops under FML Besanez. For this purpose the brigade of GM Kalnassy is to be transferred to the divisional command of FML Wolfskeel who will command the force dedicated to the overnight occupation of Rovereto.
The Avantgarde of Oberstleutnant Volkmann
This force is to advance in an arc covering the front Vignovo-Fontanfredda. This force is to have multiple roles, namely:
- To defeat any French cavalry that appears
- To unterdict any French troop movements along the Vignovo-Fontanfredda road
- To protect the right wing of IX Korps that will be advancing from Rovereto in the direction of Fontanfredda.
- If possible, occupy Vignovo and push forces down the Vignovo-Sacile road cutting the French LoC.
The force is to come under the command of FML I. Guylai once contact between these forces are made.
- The French are considerably weaker in cavalry than we are, in both quantity and quality. Use this advantage well, but do not let this situation lull you into risky actions.
- The majority of our batteries are of 3lb in calibre. These are designed to support infantry attacks and can be prolonged a considerable distance. Do not get bogged down statically with these guns but use their maneouverability.
- The third battalions of our line infantry regiments are not particularly reliable, so where possible use these units as supports to other, more experienced, battalions.
- Our large battalions offer a good prospect of attritional advantage over those of the French. Again, use this advantage wisely.
A morning conference of senior officers will take place at the army headquarters in Pordenone at 6am. At this conference updates of French positions will be assesssed and any amendments to these orders will be given verbally at that conference.
Oberst Laval Graf Nugent von Westmeath
Armee von Inneroesterreich