Sunday 17 December 2023

28mm - Napoleonic Portuguese - 9th Cazadores Battalion


The latest work from my painting table. This is the 9th Cazadore Battalion, one of the very fine Portuguese light infantry battalions raised during the Napoleonic Wars.

The figures are from the wonderful Perry Miniatures range.  I did wonder how best to base these; skirmish order, or in line or in threes, so I can send some out to skirmish?  In the end I opted to base the musket armed men in Line but for the rifle armed company, the Atiradores to be in skirmish order.

I'm not too fond of having too many figures on small bases. I find that muskets and bayonets get damaged too easily, especially when forming close order again.  If I really needed to deploy the main musket companies in skirmish order I can always space the stands out and declare them to be skirmishing.

I opted for the 9th Battalion. The main reasons for this being that they were in a lot of the actions of the Peninsular wars (as were the other Battalions), and also I just liked the combination of black cuffs and red collars lined with black.  It was fun to paint.

Despite fairly sombre brown uniforms made from local wool, there is enough detail and colour to make them interesting.  I like to add a few different trouser shades to reflect the hardships of campaigning.  The white summer uniform trousers being worn in some instances and browns and greys among the remainder.  

The brown lent itself well to lightening with dusty shades on knees and elbows, in a measured way. Enough to suggest these are men professionally happy to use cover and get down and dirty when they need to.

I think one of the most difficult things about them was deciding whether they are called Cacadores or Casadores!  Different books have different spellings.  I lean towards the latter as it appears that this is how it is pronounced. I think the 'c' in Cacadores misses the accent in English script, hence the confusion (but I know little of languages).

The poses on the Baker rifle armed Atiradores are very much to my liking.  To my mind these really suited being on Skirmish bases.

As I'll be using different rule sets, I wanted a commander on  a single stand just to be able to use for 'Sharp Practice' skirmish rules.  These characters come in very handy and indeed, in last night's game (the first we have played of 28mm Napoleonics despite many many years of dabbling in the period in this scale!), this particular battalion gained glory by taking key ground in the centre of the field.  The Sergeant controlled his men wonderfully!  It has to be said Sharp Practice is a great set of rules to play without the need to paint hundreds of figures. It actually made having fun with them attainable without a further 15 years of painting before I can begin to play with them!

So what's next?  I'm in that position of not having made my mind up. I'm currently gathering source materials to see what I feel like doing...I think it will still be Napoleonics though!


  1. Great paint job - they look as if they've been marching around Portugal and Spain for months! And I really like the bases.

    1. Thanks Jeremy, I'm really getting into this period. I normally can't keep the same theme going for more than a few months but has been Peninsular War for over 6 months now!

  2. Up to your usual high standards Jason and once again, I also did some Cacadores a few years ago for my Portugueses collection (mostly Front Rank but some metal Warlord as well). I based ALL mine on two figure bases, as I like these sorts of troops to look in open order all the time!
    As to the name, I have been told it is pronounced with a hard C in Portuguese - but I have also seen it written Cazadores, so God knows! (Interestingly, Google has put a red line under the "c" spelling but not the "z" spelling, for what that is worth....). I think it's the same base word for "hunter" as appears in the Italian, a la "chicken cacciatore"!

    1. Thanks Keith. It was so tempting to do them as 2 figure stands like my riflemen, they do suit being based like that. As for the pronunciation, I think I must find out from the horse's mouth as it were. I have been tempted to do a Spain and Portugal Battlefield tour, and have just found an 8 day trip with Col Nick Lipscombe as the guide. Call it extreme but I think I will book to go and I will come back with a definitive pronunciation! :-D It's in September 2024, so I'll feed back on that this space! :-D

  3. Splendid looking Portuguese!
    Best Iain