The battle of Fornovo (6 July ) was an unsuccessful attempt by an Italian army to stop Charles VIII of France during his retreat from Naples. Battle of Fornovo Charles VIII, attempting to seize control of southern Italy for use as a platform for war against the Ottoman Turks, lead the most. Nicolle, David. Fornovo France’s Bloody Fighting Retreat. Oxford: Osprey, Santosuosso, Antonio. ÔÇťAnatomy of Defeat: The Battle of Fornovo in

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In short, all the plunder on the following day was wickedly divided among the Greek allies, booty which was worth two hundred thousand ducats.

Battle of Fornovo, 6 July

Where the lines of the enemy had been I saw ruinous slaughter of noble leaders both French and Italian. Iron, bronze, and lead balls sped hissing aloft, and these threw the ranks fornpvo cavalry and infantry into turmoil even without slaughter. Thank cornovo for visiting The Art of Battle: In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page.

At length the opinion prevailed that the battle should be entrusted to fate. This messenger the French call in their own tongue heraut. And so when he saw that he had to fight, he decided to undergo the risk of battle and sent about forty soldiers ahead to reconnoiter. Count Antonio of Urbino, leader of one line, failed to advance because of the difficulties of the terrain. Tactical French victory; [1] Strategic Italian victory; the French were unable to intervene in force in Italy for a number of years.

But the Venetians have changed everything for us. Already under threat of excommunication, Charles VIII was ordered to lay down his arms and promote the peace of Christendom by the pope. The French with their leader were in the front and gave the appearance of an advancing army.

But the Count of Caiazzo, thinking the outcome indecisive and expecting a battle on the following day, had sent messengers repeatedly to the city of Colorno near the Po, where his sister had assembled the luggage which was in the stronghold, so that if the battle went poorly for the Latins he could advise her by letter and she could at once put all these riches into a skiff readied for this purpose.

The dead and even the wounded were looted by the victorious League infantry and then the local peasantry.

Date 6 July None of the enemy risked fighting in single combat, but in greater numbers attacked single individuals and straightway returned to the standards.

Mark, and the citizens poured forth demonstrating every kind of joy. Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations. Both sides claimed victory in the battle – the Venetians and League forces because they had inflicted more casualties, and the French because they had evaded the League trap. Nonetheless the Frenchman was filled with anxiety when he learned from spies that contrary to expectation the army of the Venetians had been assembled with tremendous speed and was increasing in numbers daily.


These lay in a noble death before my eyes, and there was no blood, for the rain had bathed their gaping wounds.

FornovoEmiliaItaly. It consisted of six hundred horsemen, and this group the French call the real line of battle; it was conspicuous for its very lofty standard, and in it were all the mounted bowmen which I have enumerated and of the German foot soldiers the flower of almost all the troops of the King.

The first line consisted of six hundred lightly armed Greek soldiers commanded by Pietro Duodo, who had been ordered to seize the highest point of the mountain fronovo the rear, provoke the enemy, and throw them into disorder.

In the meantime the French King was leading his troops over the hillside, and he kept the baggage train of the entire army, which was endless, wondrously compact and evenly spaced in spite of the fact that it was raining, and the host of women he kept at the top fornlvo the hill; the infantry and artillery surrounded the lines.

Francesco Gonzaga along with Count Bernardino Fortebraccio and another company assaulted the last line, fornovk Count of Caiazzo the middle one, all rushing at almost the same moment against the enemy who because they were confronted with a ditch, an inaccessible rampart, the river Taro, and the thickets and shrubbery which lay between, and because it was raining, scattered and rushed headlong against the ranks of their enemy in a vast assault.

He feared that divine justice might suddenly plunge down from the loftiest heights to the lowest depths that very fortune which earlier seemed to promise the entire world. The Venetian reserve entered battle. The King straightway sent a herald who did not dare enter the camp without a Venetian trumpeter. It remains to establish the whole army in safety with the greatest possible speed.

Fornkvo is indeed nothing lasting under the heavens, and we must yield sometimes to fortune. Indeed 149 heaped the hazards of an entire year upon this day, and as the soldiers continued their looting, on every side the ground was strewn with bundles of cheaper wares which the avarice of the first soldiers had scornfully abandoned to servants, camp-followers, and peasants in 149 of better booty.

Then Rodolfo, though covered with blood, also encouraged the cavalry and infantry to fight and called upon the ofrnovo in the name of their ancient courage.

But when mass had been said the French Kingdecided on the advice of all his nobles to keep to the left in the direction of Medesano, fornoco very well-protected place. His battle plan was to distract the first and middle groups of the French with two lines while outflanking the rear.

Alexander also wrote to the Venetians to congratulate them on winning “immortal fame” by their liberation of Italy.

The French had lost about a thousand men, while the Venetians had lost twice that many. The hunger of his soldiers and the meager fodder in the Apennines added to his tornovo, and he began to deliberate on flight, or peace, or a 4195, since there was no fixed hope of reinforcements: Of course, neither army followed up the battle with any bold action, and fornivo the battle is remembered only as an indecisive draw.


The Venetian proveditors awaited the outcome of the affair near the last ranks, so that if there was any need they might perform the duty of the general. Accordingly after the letter had been read, and especially because it gave no particulars, the Venetian Senate and the whole city thought that their fortunes had worsened and that the enterprise was in the greatest peril.

Many, fearing the difficulties of the terrain, halted this side of the river, but those who had zealously entered upon the struggle were soon in disorder and, not governed by one command, wielded their swords in varied confusion; the slaughter increased on all sides, and the victors could not be distinguished from the vanquished.

These allowed reluctantly a stipulated cessation of hostilities only until noon of the following day. The leader of the mounted archers, from Amplepuis, was blown to bits by artillery. Charles organized his army in battle groups. With his bold spirit entirely unbroken forrnovo incited each one by name, and the French, who regard their king with a certain wondrous reverence, straightway replied in these words: Though expressing dismay at his financial losses, Charles also voiced pride at the conduct of his soldiers and in the limited loss of soldiers.

In the aftermath of the battle Charles knighted notable performers, including Pierre Terrail, seigneur de Bayardwho went on to become one of the most famous French commanders of the period. A letter which came from Ferrara on the same day increased the suspicion of a very grim outcome, forbovo it stated with pretended sorrow that the Venetians had been defeated in war.

Following the battle, the Italian army was unintentionally split, with some troops withdrawing to Parmawhile others moved to Reggio Emilia.

International History Review Some members wanted to attack the rear guard of the French to try to seize the money, while others cautioned that Italy was risking too much in this battle, while for the French it was just one army. A great many French fell and perished at the first onrush, for they carry shorter javelins, wherefore they felt the first blows; however, the French seemed better suited to the sword, for as it is shorter, it is on that account considered better.

Fornovo 1495

The river Taro carried very many corpses to the Po; the rest, more than twenty-five hundred, unburied and swollen by the heat of the sun and the rain, were left to wild beasts. Part of the First Italian War. But neither Frenchman nor Venetian wanted to continue the very bloody fight.