Pozzolo, Battle of


Pozzolo, Battle of
(1800)
   The last victory for Republican France over the Austrian army, fought on December 25–26, 1800, in northeastern Italy. In late November, Feldzeugmeister Graf Bellegarde concentrated his 50,000 Austrian troops to cross the Mincio river, but news of defeat at Hohenlinden on December 3 made him hesitate, while French commander, General Brune went on the offensive with 70,000 men. Lieutenant General Dupont’s troops crossed the Mincio on December 25 at Pozzolo and constructed a bridge. Reinforced by Lieutenant General Suchet, he beat off an Austrian counterattack and by midday, had secured Pozzolo village. An hour later, Bellegarde attacked the village, while more troops moved along the riverbank to attack the bridge. Feldmarschalleutnant Kaim seized Pozzolo and drove the French back to the bridge, but French artillery on the opposite bank prevented the Austrians from taking the bridge. Dupont reassembled his division and led a renewed assault, which recaptured Pozzolo, while Suchet sent another division over a second bridge. Pozzolo changed hands three times in bitter fighting. A French general assault took the village for a fifth time, but Austrian cavalry and dusk prevented any further advance.
   The next morning, Suchet crossed another bridge at Monzambano in thick fog, heading for the Monte Bianco hills, where half of Bellegarde’s troops were positioned. Suchet assaulted the hills and drove the Austrians back on Salionze, while Lieutenant General Delmas attacked Valeggio village, which would change hands three times. The French reinforced their positions around Pozzolo, while an Austrian counterattack on Monte Bianco failed. During the night, Bellegarde decided not to renew the action, but retreated across the Adige River.
   See also <>; <>.
   FURTHER READING:
    Blanning, T.C.W. The French Revolutionary Wars, 1787–1802. London: Arnold, 1996;
    Fremont-Barnes, Gregory. The French Revolutionary Wars. Oxford: Osprey, 2001.
   DAVID HOLLINS

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

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