The Arcs Of Fire Gallery
The Battle of Fuentes de Onoro by Chris Collingwood
BATTLE OF FUENTES DE ONORO
by Chris Collingwood
In the Battle of Fuentes de Oñoro 3 - 6 May 1811, the British-Portuguese Army under Viscount Wellington checked an attempt by the French Army of Portugal under Marshal André Masséna to relieve the besieged city of Almeida.
At the battle the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry 51st Foot and the King's Shropshire Light Infantry 85th Light Infantry, along with the Light Division demonstrated how the French Cavalry could be beaten by a combination of rapid movements, accurate rifle fire and disciplined formations. During the battle the Light Division was sent to reinforce the 51st and 85th Light Infantry, who had been caught in open ground and surrounded by French Cavalry.
When reinforced, the whole force was able to retire rapidly - chased by the French Cavalry. When ever the French came close, the Light Infantrymen, Riflemen and Cacadores ( Portuguese Troops ), rapidly formed squares at the last safe moment, beating off the enemy cavalry. This series of rapid moves, combined with the disciplined forming of squares - off the line of march, was a spectacle that few could have believed to have been possible, except by these elite troops of the British Army.
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26" wide by 18" high
Map of The Battle of Fuentes De Onoro
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