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Battle of Borny-Colombey
Part of the Franco-Prussian War
Date August 14, 1870
Location Borny-Colombey, France
Result Tactical French victory
Kingdom of Prussia Prussia France France
Karl Friedrich von Steinmetz François Bazaine
67,500 83,500
Casualties and losses
1,200 dead,
4,900 wounded
400 dead,
3,500 wounded

The Battle of Borny-Colombey (August 14, 1870) was a minor battle of the Franco-Prussian War. It saw the escape route of the French army under François Bazaine blocked when they encountered the First Army under von Steinmetz. The outcome of the battle itself was indecisive though saw the French make good their escape to Metz.

As most of the early battles of the war, Borny was one that neither side had planned or wanted. For the French, the battle had dire consequences as they neglected to use their numerical superiority to force a passage and it delayed the Army's retreat out of Metz for twelve precious hours. This gave the Prussians the time to bring up their Second army under Prince Frederick Charles and assured that after the battles fought in the following days (Mars-la-Tour and Gravelotte) France's premier army would be trapped at Metz.


  • Georges Hardoin, Français & Allemands. Histoire anecdotique de la guerre de 1870-1871. Tome V. L'Investissement de Metz. La journée des dupes. Servigny. Noisseville. Flanville. Nouilly. Coincy.
  • Georg von Widdern, Kritische Tage. I. Teil. Die Initiative und die gegenseitige Unterstuetzung in der deutschen Heeres-und Truppenfuerung. Bd. 1. Die I. Armee bei Colombey-Nouilly am 13. u. 14. August 1870, Berlin, 1897.
  • Rédigé par la section historique du grand état-major prussien et traduit par le capitaine Paul Émile Costa de Serda, Supplément cartes de la guerre franco-allemande de 1870-71. Première partie, Histoire de la guerre jusqu'à la chute de l'empire. Premier volume, Du début des hostilités à la bataille de Gravelotte., s.l., 1874.



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