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. “Anatomy of Defeat: The Battle of Fornovo in

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But the Count of Caiazzo, thinking the outcome indecisive and expecting a battle on the following day, had sent messengers repeatedly to the 14955 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 League armies, mostly Venetians, were on the right side of the Taro river, and the French decided to keep to the left bank.

Then Rodolfo, 149 covered with blood, also encouraged the cavalry and infantry to fight and called upon the men in the name of their ancient courage. And so as is wont to happen when a time of crisis draws near, his usual assurance changed to anxiety, his earlier daring to fear, his swollen pride to humility. International History Review But between themselves, since the result of the battle was dubious, they weighed the deadly peril for Italy and indeed for almost the fornovoo world: The valley itself extends beyond Fornovo from a narrow 149 into the open plains with two hills on either side, to the right and to the left; the former direction is toward Oppiano, the latter toward Medesano, and the river Taro flows almost through the very middle of the plain.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Charles left Italy, without having gained anything. He chose to advance to Pontremoli and then over a pass into the Taro valley, then follow the 145 downstream, emerging in the Po Valley between Cremona and Parma. Some were bogged down in the swamp and slain there, some were confined by the rampart and river and drew back. The French, flrnovo encumbered and more lightly armed, hastened down the hill in a dense mass to help.


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In the sixth line Alessandro Colleoni and Taddeo dalla Motella led soldiers, and they had orders to assist wherever a wavering line needed help, and to take their fornovoo accordingly a short distance away. In other frnovo Wikimedia Commons. This setback caused a great deal of confusion in the League army, and stopped Gonzago’s attack. Since they did not yet know the losses of the enemy, they could scarcely indicate them. These tactics were to be put to shame when the highly motivated armies of France and Spain descended upon the Italian peninsula.

An Italian cavalry attack on Charles’s force was repulsed, and fkrnovo defeated cavalry was chased back to the ford. Wherever the danger 149 greater, I shall leave the duty of commanding to my uncle here and will myself with javelin and sword and a chosen band cut a path among the enemy; neither the magnitude of the enterprise nor the utmost desperation of the French disturbs my spirit.

In a strategic sense, the French were able to achieve their objective of continuing their retreat to France as a result of their tactical victory over League forces on every front.

Battle of Fornovo

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.

Many, fearing the difficulties of the terrain, halted this side of the river, but those who had zealously entered upon the struggle were fornvo in disorder and, not flrnovo 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.

Although his company was scattered Count Bernardino Fortebraccio, a most zealous man, attacked the French line in a most unfavorable spot and with clear knowledge of the danger.

This led to the development of tactics destined to establish field supremacy, the capture of wealthy prisoners for ransom, and the minimizing of casualties. Following the battle, the Italian army was unintentionally split, with some troops withdrawing to Parmawhile others moved to Reggio Emilia. I saw corpses of brave men protruding at intervals which had been despoiled by many; the Greek and Latin soldiers had been first and had removed the more precious ornaments even from those still living, and then crowds of native peasants who had watched the issue of the battle from the summits of the mountains carried off the armor, and finally groups of servants and camp-followers removed the underclothing and left naked everywhere soldiers who were dead or half-alive.


Some still breathed after hands and feet had been amputated, intestines collapsed, brains laid bare, so unyielding of life is nature.

The dead and even the wounded were looted by the victorious League infantry and then the local peasantry. He pointed out that the soldiers of Duke Lodovico were unfit for war and that there was moreover no hope in flight but only in victory.

Aside from sowing tensions among the League commanders, the League army may have been in a better state compared to the French after the battle, suffering proportionately fewer casualties and possessing more fresh soldiers.

The Holy League, an alliance comprising notably the Republic of Venicewas able to temporarily expel the French from the Italian Peninsula.

Battle of Fornovo, 6 July

This battle would mark the beginning of gunpowder weaponry and the start of the bloody Italian wars. Italian War of — Several of the French together overcame Ranuccio too after he had killed many. On a more positive side, his expedition did broaden contacts between French and Italian humanistsenergizing French art and letters in the latter Renaissance.

Another soldier stood uninjured fornovl his feet after his horse had been killed under him. Tactical French victory; [1]. Their fleet was captured at Rapallo, and the loot taken from Naples was lost, while the Duke of Orleans was forced to surrender at Novara before a relief army could arrive. The infantry, fornovvo was arranged between the respective lines of cavalry and in which there were a great many from the Venetian populace, joined in the uncertain struggle.