"Si en el frente os encontráis un soldado mal afeitado, History
sucio, con las botas rotas y el uniforme desabrochado,
cuadráos ante él, es un héroe, es un español..."
The Tercio was the product of the Italian Wars, in which the Spanish general, Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba, reorganized the Spanish army throughout a series of conflicts at the end of the 15th century and early 16th century, into a tactically unique combination of combined arms centered around armored infantry. At first the army consisted of units of around 6000 men, called coronelias, which by 1534 had been reduced to the tercios of 3000, for increased mobility on the offensive. Armies using the tercio generally intended to field them in brigades of at least three, with one tercio in the front and two behind, the rearward formations echeloned off on either side so that all three resembled a stepped pyramid, hence the name tercio, which means "one third" (that is, one third of the whole brigade or battle group).Formations
Within the tercio, ranks of pikemen arrayed themselves together into one large block (cuadro), similar to a pike square. The arquebusiers were usually split up in several mobile groups called sleeves (mangas) and deployed relative to the cuadro, typically with one manga at each corner. By virtue of this combined-arms approach, the formation simultaneously enjoyed both the staying power of its pike-armed infantry, as well as the ranged firepower of its arquebusiers. In addition to its inherent ability to repulse cavalry and other units along its front, the long-range firepower of its arquebusiers could also be easily reorganized to the flanks, making it versatile in both offensive and defensive evolutions, as demonstrated by the success of the tercios at the Battle of Pavia (1525).
Groups of tercios were typically arrayed in dragon-toothed formation (staggered—the leading edge of one unit level with the trailing edge of the preceding unit; see similar hedgehog defense concept). This enabled enfilade lines of fire and somewhat defiladed the army units themselves. Odd units alternated with even units, respectively one forward and one back, providing gaps for an unwary enemy to enter and outflank itself, where it would become subjected to the combined direct and raking cross fire from the guns of three separate tercios. From their inception, tercio formations were meant to co-ordinate their field operations with cavalry.
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This is the place of the tercios of Spain, the best infantry of the world
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My nick: Jaume_Tercio_ES
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