1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Redan

REDAN, in fortification, a work of V-shape presenting a salient angle towards the expected attack. The gorge (rear) of a redan is open. When unsupported by other works, it has the disadvantage that its fire is divergent and but few guns can be brought to bear directly towards the front. Further, both its faces are usually open to enfilade. Redans were therefore almost always used in conjunction with other works, one of the most common forms being the “ lines of redans ” used as field works. These consisted of lengths of plain trenches facing the front, with redans at intervals along the line. In the present day the term redan is loosely applied to works merely possessing saliency, as in the case of the celebrated bastions Nos. 3 and 2 at Sevastopol in 1854–55, usually called the “ Redan ” and “ Little Redan ” respectively (see Crimean War). The “ Redan ” was a large work of irregular outline, generally resembling a redan, but having the salient angle blunted or rounded off and the side faces broken into several minor fronts so as to obtain a field of fire in many directions. (See Fortification and Siegecraft.)