Tuesday, 26 April 2011


The small chapel on the hill overlooking the village of Augezd is one of the most difficult locations to find on the Austerlitz battlefield. The path from the Pratzenberg monument is not sign posted, and it appears to lead to a military installation bristling with communications equipment. Apparently this was a soviet communications site during the Cold War, and would have been strictly out of bounds. It was still occupied when we were there, but not by the Russian army. No one stopped or questioned us, but we did take a wide detour downhill to avoid actually walking past the walls or door.

We followed the path beyond the buildings, eventually leading downhill to the small church overlooking the village of Augezd, an the site of the famous Satschen ponds. At the end of the battle the allied army retreated over the frozen ponds. Napoleon positioned a battery of artillery near this church and ordered it to fire on the ice. He claimed in his Bulletin that 20,000 allied troops had drowned here.

However after the battle the ponds were drained and the remains of only two human bodies were found, plus a handful of horses. So much for Napoleon's Bulletin!

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