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Peninsular War
Part of the Napoleonic Wars
Carga de los mamelucos restaurado.jpg
The Second of May, 1808: The Charge of the Mamelukes, by Francisco Goya (1814)
Date May 2, 1808 (sometimes October 27, 1807[1]) – April 17, 1814[2]
Location Iberian Peninsula, southern France
Result Treaty of Valençay: restoration of Ferdinand VII;
Peace of Fontainebleau: abdication of Napoleon and dissolution of the French Empire
Spain Spain
Flag Portugal (1707).svg Portugal
United Kingdom United Kingdom
France French Empire
United Kingdom Arthur Wellesley
Spain Joaquín Blake y Joyes
Spain Francisco Castaños
Spain Gregorio de la Cuesta
United KingdomFlag Portugal (1707).svg William Beresford
United Kingdom John Moore  
Flag Portugal (1707).svg Bernardino Freire  
France Napoleon I
France Joseph Bonaparte
France Jean-Andoche Junot
France Jean de Dieu Soult
France André Masséna
France Louis Gabriel Suchet
France Joseph Mortier

The Peninsular War[3] was a contest between France and the allied powers of Spain, the United Kingdom, and Portugal for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when French armies invaded Portugal in 1807 and Spain in 1808 and lasted until the Sixth Coalition defeated Napoleon in 1814.

Spain's liberation struggle marked one of the first national wars[4] and the emergence of large-scale guerrillas, from which the English language borrowed the word.[5] While the French occupation destroyed the Spanish administration, which fragmented into quarrelling provincial juntas (in 1810, a reconstituted national government fortified itself in Cádiz) and proved unable to recruit, train, or equip effective armies, Napoleon's failure to pacify the people of Spain allowed Spanish, British and Portuguese forces to secure Portugal and engage French forces on the frontiers while Spanish guerrilleros bled the occupiers.[6] Acting in concert, regular and irregular allied forces prevented Napoleon's marshals from subduing the rebellious Spanish provinces.[7]

Years of fighting in Spain gradually wore down Napoleon's famous Grande Armée. While the French armies were often victorious in battle, their communications and supplies were severely tested and their units frequently cut off, harassed, or overwhelmed by partisans. The Spanish army, though beaten and driven to the peripheries, could not be stamped out and continued to hound the French remorselessly.[8] In 1812, with France gravely weakened following Napoleon's invasion of Russia, a combined allied army under Arthur Wellesley pushed into Spain and liberated Madrid. Marshal Soult led the exhausted and demoralized French forces in a fighting withdrawal across the Pyrenees and into France over the winter of 1813.

War and revolution against Napoleon's occupation led to the Spanish Constitution of 1812, later a cornerstone of European liberalism.[9] The burden of war destroyed the social and economic fabric of Portugal and Spain and ushered in an era of social turbulence, political instability, and economic stagnation. Devastating civil wars between liberal and absolutist factions, led by officers trained in the Peninsular War, persisted in Iberia until 1850. The cumulative crises and disruptions of invasion, revolution, and restoration led to the independence of many of Spain's American colonies and the independence of Brazil from Portugal.



In 1806, while in Berlin, Napoleon declared the Continental Blockade, forbidding British imports into continental Europe.[10] Of the two remaining neutral countries, Sweden and Portugal, the latter tried in vain to avoid Napoleon's ultimatum (since 1373 it had had a treaty of alliance with the English which became an alliance with the United Kingdom). After the Treaty of Tilsit in 1807, now free from obligations in the east, Napoleon decided to capture the Iberian ports.[11]

On October 27, 1807, Spain's Prime Minister Manuel de Godoy and France signed the Treaty of Fontainebleau, splitting Portugal into three kingdoms: the new Kingdom of Northern Lusitania, the Algarve (expanded to include Alentejo), and a rump Kingdom of Portugal.[12] In November 1807, after the refusal of Prince Regent John of Portugal to join the Continental System, Napoleon sent an army into Spain under General Jean-Andoche Junot with the task of invading Portugal. At the same time, General Dupont was sent in the direction of Cádiz and Marshal Soult towards Corunna.

Flight of the Portuguese royal family to Brazil

Godoy initially requested Portugal's alliance against the incoming French armies, but later secretly agreed with France that, in return for Spain's cooperation, it would receive Portugal's territories. Spain's main ambition was the seizure of the Portuguese fleet, and it sent two divisions to help French troops occupy Portugal.

The Portuguese army was positioned to defend the ports and the coast from a French attack, and on December 1 Lisbon was captured with no military opposition. The escape on November 29 of Maria I of Portugal and Prince Regent John, together with the administration and the Court (around 10,000 people and 9,000 sailors aboard 23 Portuguese war ships and 31 merchant ships) was a major setback for Napoleon and enabled John VI to continue to rule over his overseas possessions, including Brazil.

Second of May, 1808: the defenders of Monteleón take their last stand

Invasion by stealth (February–July 1808)

Under the pretext of reinforcing the Franco-Spanish army occupying Portugal, French Imperial troops began filing into Spain, where the populace greeted them with enthusiasm in spite of growing diplomatic unease. In February 1808, Napoleon ordered the French commanders to seize key Spanish fortresses, and in doing so he had officially turned on his ally.[13] A French column, disguised as a convoy of wounded, took Barcelona on February 29 by persuading the authorities to open the city's gates.[14] Many commanders were not particularly concerned about the fate of the ruling regime, nor were they in any position to fight. (When Brigadier Alvarez garrisoned the Barcelona citadel against the French, his own superiors ordered him to stand down.)

General La Romana by Vicente Lopez y Portaña

The Spanish Royal Army of 100,000 men found itself paralysed: under-equipped,[15] frequently leaderless, confused by the turmoil in Madrid, and scattered from Portugal to the Balearic Islands. Fifteen thousand of its finest troops, (General La Romana's Division of the North) had been lent to Napoleon in 1807 and remained stationed in Denmark under French command. Only the peripheries contained armies of any strength: Galicia, with Joaquin Blake's troops, and Andalusia, under Castaños. The French were consequently able to seize much of north-eastern Spain by coups de main, and any hope of turning back the invasion was stillborn.

To secure his gains, Napoleon pursued a series of intrigues against the Spanish royal family. A coup d'état instigated by the Spanish aristocrats forced Charles IV from his throne and replaced him with his son Ferdinand. Napoleon removed the royals to Bayonne and forced them both to abdicate on May 5, handing the throne to his brother Joseph Bonaparte. A puppet Spanish council approved the new king, but the usurpation provoked a popular uprising that eventually spread throughout the country. Citizens of Madrid rose up in rebellion against the French occupation on May 2, slew 150 French soldiers, and were not put down until Murat's elite Guard and mameluk cavalry crashed into the city and trampled the crowds.[16]

Agustina, maid of Aragón, fires a gun on the French invaders at Saragossa.

The next day, immortalized by Goya in his painting, The Third of May 1808, the French army shot hundreds of Madrid citizens in retaliation. Similar reprisals were repeated in other cities and continued for days, with no military effect but to strengthen the resistance; soon afterwards, bloody, spontaneous fighting known as guerrilla ("little war") erupted in much of Spain; the term "guerrilla" has been used ever since to describe such combat.[17] The tiny province of Asturias rose up in arms, cast out its French governor on May 25 and "declared war on Napoleon at the height of his greatness."[18] Within weeks, all the Spanish provinces had followed its example.[19] Mobs butchered 338 French citizens in Valencia. Every French ship of the line anchored at Cádiz was bombarded and captured.[20] Napoleon had unwittingly provoked a total war against the Spaniards, a mistake from which the French Empire would never truly recover.[21]

Josep Bernat Flaugier's 1808 painting depicts Imperial troops battling Catalan militia

The deteriorating strategic situation forced France to increase its military commitments – in February, Napoleon had boasted that 12,000 men could conquer Spain;[22] by June, 165,120 troops were rushing into the country in an effort to control the crisis.[23] The main French army of 80,000 men held only a narrow strip of central Spain stretching from Pamplona and San Sebastián in the north through to Madrid and Toledo to the south. The French in Madrid took shelter behind an additional 30,000 troops under Moncey. Junot, meanwhile, stood stranded in Portugal, cut off by 300 miles (480 km) of hostile territory.

From Murat's optimistic reports, Napoleon believed the uprisings would die down and the country settle into order if his brother held on to the throne in Madrid while French flying columns seized and pacified Spain's major cities. To this end, General Dupont led 24,430 men south toward Seville and Cádiz; Marshal Bessières moved into Aragón and Old Castile with 25,000 men, aiming to capture Santander with one hand and Saragossa with the other; General Moncey marched toward Valencia with 29,350 men; and General Duhesme marshalled 12,710 troops in Catalonia and put Gerona under siege.[24] Historians have concluded that Napoleon, having no respect for the "insolent" Spanish militias which everywhere opposed him,[25] tried to do too much with too little.

Valencians prepare to resist the invaders in this 1884 painting by Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida.

The signs of trouble came quickly: Catalan militia (somatén) virtually overran Barcelona, and French units attempting to break the ring were turned back at the Bruc with heavy casualties. Gerona twice resisted all efforts to conquer it.[26] At Saragossa, French overtures for an honorable capitulation met with the laconic reply, "War to the knife."[27] General Palafox and the Spaniards defied the French for three months, fighting inch by inch, corp à corp in the streets, and finally forcing Lefebvre to lift the siege in August and limp away in defeat. Moncey's push toward the coast ended in defeat outside the walls of Valencia, where 1,000 French recruits fell trying to storm a city whipped into a frenzy by the clergy. Making short work of Spanish counterattacks, Moncey began a long retreat, harried at every step.[25] After storming and sacking Cordoba, Dupont, cowed by the mass hostility of the Andalusians, broke off his offensive and retired to Andujar.

Only in the north did the French find a measure of success. In June, General Lasalle's cavalry trampled General Cuesta's small, improvised army at Cabezón and unbarred the road to Valladolid. When Bessières' march on Santander was checked by a string of partisan attacks in July, the French turned back and found Blake and Cuesta with their combined army atop Medina del Rio Seco. The Spanish generals, at Cuesta's insistence, were making a dash towards the vulnerable French supply lines at Valladolid. The two armies deployed on July 14, Cuesta unwisely leaving a gap between his troops and Blake's. The French poured into the hole and, after a sharp fight against Cuesta, swept the motley Spanish army from the field, putting Old Castile firmly back in Napoleon's hands.

The Spanish Army's shocking triumph at Bailén gave the French Empire its first major defeat

At a stroke, Bessières' victory salvaged the strategic position of the French army in northern Spain. The road to Madrid lay open to Joseph, and the failures at Girona, Valencia, and Saragossa were forgotten; all that remained was to reinforce Dupont and allow him to force his way south through Andalusia. A delighted Napoleon asserted that "if Marshal Bessières has been able to beat the Army of Galicia with few casualties and small effort, General Dupont will be able to overthrow everybody he meets."[28] Just a few days later however, Dupont was sorely defeated at Bailén and surrendered his entire Army Corps to General Castaños.

The catastrophe was total. With the loss of 24,000 troops, Napoleon's military machine in Spain abruptly collapsed. Joseph and the French command panicked and ordered a general retreat to the Ebro, abandoning Madrid and undoing all of Bessières' hard-fought gains. Europe trembled at this first check to the hitherto unbeatable Imperial armies – a Bonaparte had been chased from his throne; tales of Spanish heroism inspired Austria and showed the force of national resistance. Bailén set in motion the rise of the Fifth Coalition against Napoleon.[29]

Retreat from Portugal (August 1808)

Before the Peninsular War, British military operations on mainland Europe had been marked by bungling half-measures and a series of failures (the 1809 Walcheren expedition being the last of these). The British Army was not large enough to operate on its own against the French, and without strong allies, Britain had been forced to withdraw from Europe. On June 18, the Portuguese uprising broke out. The popular uprisings in Portugal and Spain encouraged the British to commit substantial forces once again and British propaganda was quick to capture the novelty of the situation; for the first time, peoples, not princes, were in rebellion against the "Great Disturber".

In August 1808, British forces (including the King's German Legion) landed in Portugal under the command of Lieutenant-General Sir Arthur Wellesley, the future Duke of Wellington. Wellesley checked Delaborde's forces at Roliça on August 17, while the Portuguese Observation Army of Bernardino Freire contained Loison. On August 20, the Anglo–Portuguese held their line at the Vimeiro and repulsed Junot. Wellesley, however, was considered too junior an officer to command the newly-reinforced expedition to Portugal and was replaced by Harry Burrard, who proceeded to grant Junot very favourable armistice terms, allowing for his unmolested evacuation from Portugal – courtesy of the Royal Navy – under the controversial Convention of Sintra in August. The British commanders were ordered back to England for an inquiry into Sintra, leaving Sir John Moore to head the 30,000-strong British force, supplied, convoyed, and protected by the Royal Navy.

Vice-Admiral Lord Collingwood's Mediterranean Fleet bottled up the remaining French fleet, stationed at Toulon since its defeat at Trafalgar. In June, General La Romana orchestrated a remarkable escape from Denmark, via Gothenburg, by slipping the better part of his Division of the North aboard a British squadron, which set sail for Santander.[22] The presence of the Royal Navy along the coast of France and Spain slowed the French entry into eastern and southern Spain and drained their military resources in the area. Frigates commanded the strategic Gulf of Roses north of Barcelona, close to the French border, and were conspicuously involved in the defence of Rosas; Lord Cochrane held a cliff-top fortress against the French for nearly a month, destroying it when the main citadel capitulated to a superior French force.[30]

Napoleon's campaign (October 1808–January 1809)

Spanish officials surrender Madrid to Napoleon. Antoine-Jean Gros, 1810

Bailén and the loss of Portugal convinced Napoleon of the peril he faced in Spain. Deeply disturbed by news of Sintra, the Emperor remarked,

I see that everybody has lost their head since the infamous capitulation of Bailén. I realise that I must go there myself to get the machine working again.[31]

The French, all but masters of Spain in June, stood with their backs to the Pyrenees, clutching at Navarre and Catalonia. It was not known if even these two footholds could be maintained in the face of a Spanish attack.

However, no attack was forthcoming. The Spanish social fabric, shaken by the shock of rebellion, gave way to its crippling social and political tensions; the patriots stood divided on every question and their nascent war effort suffered accordingly. With the fall of the monarchy, constitutional power devolved to local juntas. These institutions interfered with the army and the business of war, undermined the tentative central government taking shape in Madrid,[32] and in some cases proved almost as dangerous to each other as to the French.[33] The British army in Portugal, meanwhile, was itself immobilized by logistical problems and bogged down in administrative disputes, and did not budge.

The Battle of Tudela by January Suchodolski. Oil on canvas, 1895.

Consequently, months of inaction passed at the front, the revolution having "temporarily crippled Patriot Spain at the very moment when decisive action could have changed the whole course of the war."[34] While the allies inched forward, a vast consolidation of bodies and bayonets from the far reaches of the French Empire brought 100,000 veterans of the Grande Armée into Spain, led in person by Napoleon and his Marshals.[35] With his Armée d'Espagne of 278,670 men drawn up on the Ebro, facing a scant 80,000 raw, disorganized Spanish troops, the Emperor announced to the Spanish deputies:[36]

I am here with the soldiers who conquered at Austerlitz, at Jena, at Eylau. Who can withstand them? Certainly not your wretched Spanish troops who do not know how to fight. I shall conquer Spain in two months and acquire the rights of a conqueror.

Napoleon led the French on a brilliant[37] offensive involving a massive double envelopment of the Spanish lines. The attack began in November and has been described as "an avalanche of fire and steel."[38]

La bataille de Somosierra by Louis-François, Baron Lejeune (1775–1848). Oil on canvas, 1810.

In the west, however, one Spanish wing slipped the noose when Marshal Lefebvre failed to encircle the Army of Galicia after a premature and indecisive attack at Pancorbo; General Blake drew his artillery back to safety and the bloodied Spanish infantry followed in good order. Lefebvre and Victor offered a careless chase that ended in humiliation at Valmaseda where their scattered troops were roughly handled by La Romana's newly repatriated Spanish veterans and narrowly escaped to safety.

The campaign raced to a swift conclusion in the south, where Napoleon's main army overran the unprotected Spanish centre in a devastating attack near Burgos. The Spanish militias, untrained and unable to form infantry squares, scattered in the face of massed French cavalry, while the Spanish and Walloon Guards stood their ground in vain and were chewed up by Lasalle and his sabreurs. Marshal Lannes with a powerful force then smashed through the tottering Spanish right wing at Tudela on November 23, routing Castaños and adding a new inscription to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

Finally, Blake's isolated army about-faced on November 17 and dug in at Espinosa. His lines shook off French attacks over a day and night of vicious fighting before cracking the next day. Blake again outmarched Soult and escaped with a rump army to Santander, but the Spanish front had been torn apart and the Imperial armies raced forward over undefended provinces. Napoleon flung 45,000 men south into the Sierra de Guadarrama which shielded Madrid.

Somosierra : Polish cavalry assail Spanish gunners in a mountain pass.
Surrender of Madrid, 4 December 1809

The mountains hardly slowed Napoleon at all: at Somosierra pass on November 30, his Polish and Guard cavalry squadrons charged up a narrow gorge through raking fire to overrun General San Juan's artillery. San Juan's militias then gave way before the relentless French infantry, while the Spanish royal artillerymen stuck to their guns and fought to the last. French patrols reached Madrid on December 1 and entered the city in triumph on December 4. Joseph Bonaparte was restored to his throne. San Juan retreated west to Talavera, where his mutinous conscripts shot him before dispersing.

General Sir John Moore's small British army moved from Portugal into northwestern Spain, surprising a body of French cavalry at Sahagun. Moore remained in Leon for some time after he recognised that the position of his army was perilous; this was a calculated attempt to draw the attention of the French and give the Spanish forces time to rally after their recent reverses. In this Moore was successful, alerted to his whereabouts the Imperial army forced Moore into a harrowing retreat marked by a breakdown in the discipline of many regiments. The retreat was punctuated by stubborn rearguard actions at Benavente and Cacabelos, each time the British army turned to fight the discipline of the troops showed a marked, but temporary, improvement. La Romana dutifully marched his tattered army to cover his ally's retreat, but while the British troops managed to escape to the sea at A Coruña after fending off a strong French attack, the Spaniard had no escape and was defeated by Soult at Mansilla. Some 26,000 sickly troops eventually reached Britain, 7,000 men having been lost over the course of the expedition.[39] Moore, killed while directing the defence of Coruña, remains buried in Spain under a monument constructed by Soult.

Saragossa : The assault on the Santa Engracia monastery. Oil on canvas, 1827.

In Catalonia, Napoleon fed his faltering army strong reinforcements as early as October 1808, ordering Marshal St. Cyr with 17,000 men to the relief of Duhesme in Barcelona. Rosas fell to the French at the end of November, opening the path south for St. Cyr, who bypassed Girona and, after a remarkable forced march, fell upon and destroyed part of the Spanish army at Cardedeu, near Barcelona (December 18). St. Cyr and Duhesme chased the retreating Spaniards under General Reding, capturing 1,200 men at Molins de Rey. In February 1809, Reding led a reconstituted army against the French right wing and, after vigorous marching and countermarching, took a stand at Valls only to be ridden down and killed by French cavalry.

Episode of the Defence of Zaragoza Against the French by Federico Jiménez Nicanor.

Only at Saragossa, still scarred from Lefebvre's bombardments that summer, was the Imperial charge temporarily halted once again. The French invested the city on December 20. Lannes and Moncey committed two army corps (45,000 men) and considerable materiel to a second siege of the city, but their numbers and guns made no impression on the Spanish citizen-soldiers who, behind the walls of Saragossa, proved unmovable.

Palafox's second epic defence brought the city enduring national and international fame.[40][41] The Spaniards fought with a determination which never faltered; street by street, building by building, through pestilence and starvation; at times entrenching themselves in convents, at others putting their own homes to the torch. Nearly all who stood with Palafox met their deaths,[42] but for two months, the Grande Armée did not set foot beyond the Ebro's shore. On February 20, 1809, the French left behind burnt-out ruins filled with 64,000 corpses.[43][44] After only a little more than two months in Spain, Napoleon returned command to his marshals and went back to France.

Portuguese frontier (1809)

In March, Marshal Soult initiated the second invasion of Portugal through the northern corridor. Initially repulsed in the Minho river by Portuguese militias, he then captured Chaves, Braga and, on March 29, 1809, Porto. However, the resistance of Silveira in Amarante and other northern cities isolated Soult in Porto. Miguel Pereira Forjaz, the Secretary of War, rebuilt and reformed the Portuguese army with British aid and arms. In a first phase some 20,000 were called to the regular army and 30,000 to militias.[45] Wellesley returned to Portugal in April 1809 to command the Anglo–Portuguese forces. He strengthened the British army with the recently formed Portuguese regiments organized by Forjaz and the Governors of the Realm and adapted by General Beresford to the British way of campaigning. These new forces turned Soult out of Portugal at the Battle of Grijó (May 10–11) and the Second Battle of Porto (May 12). All other northern cities were recaptured by General Silveira.

With Portugal secured, Wellesley advanced into Spain to unite with the General Cuesta's forces. The combined allied force prepared for an assault on Victor's I Corps at Talavera, July 23. Cuesta, however, was reluctant to agree, and was only persuaded to advance on the following day.[46] The delay allowed the French to withdraw, but Cuesta sent his army headlong after Victor, and found himself faced by almost the entire French army in New Castile – Victor had been reinforced by the Toledo and Madrid garrisons. The Spanish retreated precipitously, necessitating two British divisions advancing to cover their retreat[47]. The next day, July 27, the French advanced in three columns and were repulsed several times throughout the day by British infantry in line. The Battle of Talavera was a costly victory that left the allies precariously exposed, so they retreated westwards, abandoning several thousand of their own wounded to the Spanish who transferred them to the French. Although the Spanish had promised food to the British if they advanced into Spain, not only was no food forthcoming, but Spanish troops threatened to pillage any town that sold food to their allies, forcing the British to continue retreating back to Portugal.

After his disappointing experience, and fearing a new French attack, Wellesley made the decision to strengthen Portugal's defences. To protect Lisbon, he took a plan from Major Neves Costa and ordered the construction of a strong line of 162 forts along key roads and entrenchements and earthworks, the Lines of Torres Vedras.

Stalemate (1810–1811)

The French reinvaded Portugal in July 1810 with an army of around 60,000 led by Marshal Masséna. The first significant clash was at the Battle of Coa. Later on, Masséna took "the worst route in Portugal." At the Battle of Buçaco on September 27, he suffered a tactical defeat with a careless attack on a strong position, but he soon forced the allies to retreat to the Lines. The fortifications were so impressive that, after an attack by a small force at Sobral on October 14, a stalemate ensued. As Charles Oman wrote, "On that misty October 14th morning, at Sobral, the Napoleonic tide attained its highest watermark, then it ebbed." The Portuguese population had subjected the area in front of the lines to a scorched earth policy and the French were eventually forced to withdraw due to disease and a lack of food and other supplies. The British suffered a setback just the next day in the Battle of Fuengirola. On October 15, a much smaller Polish garrison held off British troops under Lord Blayney, who was subsequently taken captive and held by the French until 1814.

The allies were reinforced by the arrival of fresh British troops in early 1811 and began an offensive. A French force was beaten at Barrosa on March 5 as part of an unsuccessful manoeuvre to break up the siege of Cádiz, and Masséna was forced to withdraw from Portugal after an allied victory at the Battle of Fuentes de Onoro (May 3–5). Masséna had lost 25,000 men in the fighting in Portugal and was replaced by Auguste Marmont. Soult came from the South to threaten Extremadura, and captured the fortress town of Badajoz before returning to Andalusia with most of his army. An Anglo–Portuguese and Spanish army led by Marshal William Beresford marched to try and retake the town; they laid siege to the French garrison Soult had left behind, but Soult regathered his army and marched to relieve the siege. Beresford moved his besieging army from Badajoz to intercept the marching French, and after the Battle of Albuera on May 16, Soult was forced to retreat to Seville.

The war now fell into a temporary lull, the numerically superior French being unable to find an advantage and coming under increasing pressure from Spanish guerrilla activity. The French had upwards of 350,000 soldiers in L'Armée de l'Espagne, but the vast majority, over 200,000, was deployed to protect the French lines of supply, rather than as substantial fighting units. Meanwhile, the Spaniards drafted the liberal Spanish Constitution of 1812.

Turning of the tide (1812)

Battle of Salamanca.
The emperor wants me to take the offensive...but his Majesty does not realize that the smallest movement in these parts expends great quantities of resources, especially of horses... To make a requisition on even the poorest village we have to send a detachment of 200 men and, to be able to live, we have to scatter over great distances.

—Marshal August Marmont[48]

In January 1812, Napoleon approved the full annexation of Catalonia into the French Empire. Its territory was divided in départements (Ter, Sègre, Montserrat and Bouches-de-l'Èbre). Looking for the approval of the local population, Catalan was declared the official language in those departments together with French. However, it did not succeed because of the historical aversion that the Catalans had against the French, and guerrilla activity continued in Catalonia. Wellington renewed the allied advance into Spain just after New Year in 1812, besieging and capturing the fortified towns of Ciudad Rodrigo on January 19 and Badajoz, after a costly assault, on April 6. Both towns were pillaged by the troops. The allied army took Salamanca on June 17, just as Marmont approached – the two forces finally met on July 22. The Battle of Salamanca was a damaging defeat to the French, and Marshal Marmont was severely wounded. As the French regrouped, the Anglo–Portuguese entered Madrid on August 6 and advanced towards Burgos, before retreating all the way back to Portugal when renewed French concentrations threatened to trap them. As a consequence of the Salamanca campaign the French were forced to end their long siege of Cadiz and to permanently evacuate the provinces of Andalusia and Asturias.

Allied victory (1813–1814)

French hopes of recovery were stricken by Napoleon's disastrous invasion of Russia in 1812. He had taken 30,000 soldiers from the hard-pressed Armée de l'Espagne, and, starved of reinforcements and replacements, the French position became increasingly unsustainable as the allies renewed the offensive in May 1813.

In a strategic move, Wellington planned to move his supply base from Lisbon to Santander. The Anglo–Portuguese forces swept northwards in late May and seized Burgos; they then outflanked the French army, forcing Joseph Bonaparte into the valley of the River Zadorra. At the Battle of Vitoria, on June 21, the 65,000 men of Joseph were routed by 53,000 British, 27,000 Portuguese and 19,000 Spaniards. Wellesley pursued and dislodged the French from San Sebastián, which was sacked and burnt to the ground by the Anglo-Portuguese.

The allies chased the retreating French, reaching the Pyrenees in early July. Soult was given command of the French forces and began a counter-offensive, dealing the allied generals two sharp defeats at the Battle of Maya and the Battle of Roncesvalles. Yet, he was severely repulsed by the Anglo–Portuguese, lost momentum, and finally fled after the allied victory at the Battle of Sorauren (July 28 and July 30).

On October 7, after Wellington received news of the reopening of hostilities in Germany, the allies finally crossed into France, fording the Bidasoa river. On December 11, a beleaguered and desperate Napoleon agreed to a separate peace with Spain under the Treaty of Valençay, under which he would release and recognize Ferdinand in exchange for a complete cessation of hostilities. But the Spanish had no intention of trusting Napoleon, and the fighting continued.

The Peninsular War went on through the allied victories of Bera pass, the Battle of Nivelle, and the Battle of Nive near Bayonne (December 10–14 1813), the Battle of Orthez (February 27, 1814) and the Battle of Bayonne (April 14), the latter occurring after Napoleon's abdication.

Guerrilla war

Juan Martín Díez, El Empecinado.

The Spanish War of Independence was one of the most successful partisan wars in history and is the origin of the word guerrilla in the English language (from Spanish Guerra de guerrillas or "War of little wars"). However, this guerrilla warfare was costly to both sides. Not only did the 'patriotic' Spaniards trouble the French troops, they also petrified their countrymen with a combination of forced conscription and looting of towns. Many of the partisans were, in fact, either fleeing the law or trying to get rich, although later in the war the authorities tried to make the guerrillas militarily reliable, and many of them formed regular army units, like Espoz y Mina's "Cazadores de Navarra", among others.

The idea of forming the guerrillas into an armed force had positive and negative effects. On the one hand, uniform and stronger military discipline would stop men from running off into the streets and disappearing from the band. However, the more disciplined the unit was, the easier it was for the French troops to catch them when they sprang an ambush. Only a few partisan leaders formed up with the authorities; most did so just to lay off criminal charges and to retain the effective status of an officer in the Spanish army, so their weaponry, clothes and food would be paid for.

The guerrilla style of fighting was the Spanish military's single most effective application. Most organized attempts on the part of regular Spanish forces to take on the French led to their defeat. However, once the battle was lost and the soldiers reverted to their guerrilla roles, they effectively tied down greater numbers of French troops over a wider area with much less expenditure of men, energy, and supplies. Wellington's final success in the Peninsula is often said to be largely due to the collapse and demoralization of the French military structure in Spain caused by the guerrillas;

El sometent del Bruc by Ramon Marti i Alsina depicts Catalan guerrillas.

It was these obscure triumphs—a platoon shot down in an ambush, a courier and his message captured as he galloped across the plain—which made possible the orthodox victories of Wellington and his Anglo-Portuguese army and eventually the liberation of Portugal and Spain.[49]

Mass resistance by the people of Spain prefigured the total wars of the twentieth century and eventually inspired parallel struggles by the Russians and Prussians. Tsar Alexander, when threatened with war, rebuked the French ambassador:

If the Emperor Napoleon decides to make war, it is possible, even probable, that we shall be defeated ... But ... the Spaniards have frequently been defeated; and they are not beaten, nor have they surrendered.[50]

Role of intelligence

Intelligence played a crucial role in the successful prosecution of the war by the British after 1810. Spanish and Portuguese guerrillas were asked to capture messages from French couriers. From 1811 onwards, these dispatches were often either partially or wholly enciphered.

George Scovell of Wellington's General Staff was given the job of deciphering them. At first, the ciphers used were fairly simple and he received help from other members of the General Staff. However, beginning in 1812, a much stronger cipher, originally devised for diplomatic messages, came into use and Scovell was left to work on this himself. He steadily broke it, and the knowledge of French troop movements and deployments was used to great effect in most of the engagements described above. The French never realised that the code had been broken and continued to use it until their code tables were captured at the Battle of Vitoria.



King Joseph was cheered initially by Spanish afrancesados ("Frenchified"), who believed that collaboration with France would bring modernisation and liberty. An example was the abolition of the Spanish Inquisition. However, priesthood and patriots stirred up agitation among the populace, which became widespread after the French army's first examples of repression (Madrid, 1808) were presented as fact to unite and enrage the people. The remaining afrancesados were exiled to France following the departure of French troops.

Francisco Goya: The Third of May 1808

The pro-independence side included both traditionalists and liberals. After the war, they would clash in the Carlist Wars, as new king Ferdinand VII, "the Desired One" (later "the Traitor king"), revoked all the changes made by the independent Cortes, which were summoned in Cádiz acting on his behalf to coordinate the provincial Juntas and resist the French. He restored absolute monarchy, prosecuted and put to death everyone suspected of liberalism, and altered the laws of royal succession in favour of his daughter Isabella II, thus starting a century of civil wars against the supporters of the former legal heir to the throne.

The liberal Cortes had approved the first Spanish Constitution on March 19, 1812, which was later nullified by the king. In Spanish America, the Spanish and Criollo officials formed Juntas that swore allegiance to King Ferdinand. This experience of self-government led the later Libertadores (Liberators) to promote the independence of the Spanish–American colonies.

The Proclamation of the Constitution of 1812 by Salvador Viniegra.

French troops seized many of the extensive properties of the Catholic Church. Churches and convents were used as stables and barracks, and artworks were sent to France, leading to an impoverished Spanish cultural heritage. Allied armies also plundered Spanish towns and the countryside. Wellington recovered some of the artwork and offered to return it, but King Ferdinand gave them to him. These pieces can be viewed at the Duke's London home, Apsley House, and at his country estate, Stratfield Saye House.

Another notable effect of the war was the severe damage incurred by Spain's economy; devastated by the war, it continued to suffer in the political turbulence that followed.[51]


The Peninsular War signified the traumatic entry of Portugal into the modern age. The Court's movement to Rio de Janeiro initiated the process of Brazil's state-building that eventually produced its independence. The skillful evacuation by the Portuguese Navy of more than 15,000 people from the Court, Administration, and Army was a bonus for Brazil and a blessing in disguise for Portugal, as it liberated the energies of the country. The Governors of Portugal nominated by the absent king had a scant impact because of the successive French invasions and British occupation.

The role of the War Minister Miguel Pereira Forjaz was unique. Wellington held him as the ablest man in Portugal.[52] With the Portuguese Staff, he managed to build a regular army of 55,000 men and a further 50,000 as national guard milicias and a variable number of home guard ordenanças, perhaps totalling more than 100,000. In an 1812 letter to Baron Stein, the Russian Court Minister, Forjaz recommended a "scorched earth" policy and the trading of space for time as the only way to defeat a French invasion. Alexander I, Tsar of Russia, ordered his generals to use Wellington's Portuguese strategy and avoid battles to starve Napoleon's Grande Armée.

The nation at arms had a similar impact on Portugal as the French Revolution on France. A new class, tried, disciplined, and experienced by war against the French Empire, would assert Portuguese independence. Marshal Beresford and 160 officers were retained after 1814 to lead Portugal's Army while the King was still in Brazil. Portuguese politics hinged on the project of a Luso–Brazilian United Kingdom, with the African colonies supplying slaves, Brazil manufacturing and Portugal the trade. By 1820, this became untenable: Portuguese Peninsular War officers expelled the British and began the liberal revolution at Porto on August 24. Liberal institutions were only consolidated after a civil war in 1832–34.


French victories of the Peninsular War inscribed on the Arc de Triomphe.

Goya's series of 82 prints The Disasters of War remains the most famous and powerful depiction of the war and its effects on the civilian population. Prosper Mérimée's Carmen, on which Bizet's opera was based, is set during the war. The C. S. Forester novel Death to the French concerns a private in a British Rifle Regiment who is cut off from his unit and joins a group of Portuguese guerrillas. The 1957 motion picture The Pride and the Passion, also set during the war, was based on Forester's The Gun. A short but dramatic episode from the war is given in Gary Jennings's Aztec Rage. F. L. Lucas's novel The English Agent - A Tale of the Peninsular War (1969), about the Battle of Bailén and its aftermath, is the account of a British Army officer who, gathering information before the first British landings, buys a Frenchwoman at auction to save her from the Spanish mob. Lucas's poem "Spain 1809" (in From Many Times and Lands, 1953), the story of a Spanish village woman's courage during the French occupation, was turned into the play A Kind of Justice by Margaret Wood (1966). Curro Jiménez was a successful Spanish TV series about a generous bandit fighting against the French in Sierra Morena. The Sharpe novels by Bernard Cornwell were a series likewise following the adventures of a British Army officer and set, partly, during the Peninsular War. They were later made into a series of television movies featuring actor Sean Bean as Sharpe (see Sharpe (TV Series)). A board wargame called Wellington — The Peninsular War 1812–1814 was produced by GMT Games in 2005.[53]

The Peninsular War saw the first use of medal bars. Also known as "devices", they are clasps affixed to the ribbons from which medals are suspended. The Peninsular Medal, more properly known as the Army Gold Medal was issued to senior officers in Wellington's army, with a clasp for each major battle in which the holder participated. When four clasps were issued a Peninsular Cross was given, with each arm inscribed with a battle's name. Subsequent clasps were then added to the ribbon. Wellington's Peninsular Cross, featuring a unique nine clasps, can be seen on his uniform in the basement of Apsley House. In 1847 the surviving lower ranked officers and enlisted men received the Military General Service Medal, with battle clasps, for service in this conflict.


  1. ^ Glover, p. 45. Some accounts mark the Franco-Spanish invasion of Portugal as the beginning of the war.
  2. ^ Glover, p 335. Denotes the date of the general armistice between France and the Sixth Coalition.
  3. ^ Also Spanish War of Independence - Guerre d'indépendance espagnole and Guerra de la Independencia Española in French and Spanish respectively. It is also known as Guerra del Francès ("the War of the Frenchman") in Catalonia and Invasões Francesas ("French Invasions") in Portugal.
  4. ^ Churchill, p. 258. "Nothing like this universal uprising of a numerous, ancient race and nation, all animated by one thought, had been seen before...For the first time the forces unchained by the French Revolution, which Napoleon had disciplined and directed, met not kings or Old World hierarchies, but a whole population inspired by the religion and patriotism which...Spain was to teach to Europe."
  5. ^ Laqueur, p. 350. Laqueur notes that the war was "one of the first occasions when guerrilla warfare had been waged on a large scale in modern times."
  6. ^ Gates, pp. 33–34. Gates notes that much of the Grande Armée "was rendered unavailable for operations against Wellington because innumerable Spanish contingents kept materialising all over the country. In 1810, for example, when Massena invaded Portugal, the Imperial forces in the Peninsula totalled a massive 325,000 men, but only about one quarter of these could be spared for the offensive—the rest were required to contain the Spanish insurgents and regulars. This was the greatest single contribution that the Spaniards were to make and, without it, Wellington could not have maintained himself on the continent for long—let alone emerge triumphant from the conflict."
  7. ^ Chandler, The Art of Warfare on Land, p. 164
  8. ^ Glover, p. 52. Glover notes that "the Spanish troops were no match for the French. They were ill-equipped and sketchily supplied. Their ranks were filled with untrained recruits. Their generals bickered among themselves. They lost heavily but their armies were not destroyed. Time and time again Spanish armies lost their artillery, their colours, their baggage. They suffered casualties on a scale that would have crippled a French or a British army. They never disintegrated. They would retire to some inaccessible fastness, reorganise themselves and reappear to plague the French as they had never been plagued before."
  9. ^ Payne, Stanley G. (1973). A History of Spain and Portugal: Eighteenth Century to Franco. 2. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press. pp. 432–433. ISBN 9780299062705. "The Spanish pattern of conspiracy and revolt by liberal army officers ... was emulated in both Portugal and Italy. In the wake of Riego's successful rebellion, the first and only pronunciamiento in Italian history was carried out by liberal officers in the kingdom of the Two Sicilies. The Spanish-style military conspiracy also helped to inspire the beginning of the Russian revolutionary movement with the revolt of the Decembrist army officers in 1825. Italian liberalism in 1820–1821 relied on junior officers and the provincial middle classes, essentially the same social base as in Spain. It even used a Hispanized political vocabulary, for it was led by giunte (juntas), appointed local capi politici (jefes políticos), used the terms of liberali and servili (emulating the Spanish word serviles applied to supporters of absolutism), and in the end talked of resisting by means of a guerrilla. For both Portuguese and Italian liberals of these years, the Spanish constitution of 1812 remained the standard document of reference."  
  10. ^ Esdaile, p. 2
  11. ^ Gates, pp. 5–7 and Esdaile, pp. 2–5
  12. ^ Esdaile, pp. 7–8 and Gates, p. 8
  13. ^ Esdaille, p. 166
  14. ^ Chandler, p. 605
  15. ^ Gates, p. 35. For example, the Army's 26 cavalry regiments of 15,000 men possessed only 9,000 horses.
  16. ^ Chandler, p. 610
  17. ^ Esdaile, pp. 302–303. Rebel groups sprung up on a local basis and were unaware of the resistance being prepared elsewhere in Spain. Esdaile asserts that the partisans were as committed to driving the ancien regime out of Spain as they were to fighting foreign armies, noting that the Patriots had no scruples about liquidating officials skeptical of their revolutionary program.
  18. ^ Churchill, p. 259
  19. ^ Gates, p. 12
  20. ^ Glover, p. 53
  21. ^ Chandler, p. 608. Chandler notes that Napoleon "never appreciated how independent the Spanish people were of their government; he misjudged the extent of their pride, of the tenacity of their religious faith, of their loyalty to Ferdinand. He anticipated that they would accept the change of regime without demur; instead he soon found himself with a war of truly national proportions on his hands."
  22. ^ a b Chandler, p. 611
  23. ^ Gates, p. 162
  24. ^ Chandler, p. 611. Gates, pp. 181–182
  25. ^ a b Chandler, p. 614
  26. ^ Gates, p. 61
  27. ^ Gates, p. 77
  28. ^ Chandler, p. 616
  29. ^ Chandler, p. 617. "This was an historic occasion; news of it spread like wildfire throughout Spain and then all Europe. It was the first time since 1801 that a sizable French force had laid down its arms, and the legend of French invincibility underwent a severe shaking. Everywhere anti-French elements drew fresh inspiration from the tidings. The Pope published an open denunciation of Napoleon; Prussian patriots were heartened; and, most significantly of all, the Austrian war party began to secure the support of the Emperor Francis for a renewed challenge to the French Empire.
  30. ^ James, pp. 131–132
  31. ^ Chandler, p. 620
  32. ^ Chandler, p. 625. Chandler notes that "the particular interests of the provincial delegates made even the pretense of centralised government a travesty."
  33. ^ Chandler, p. 621. John Lawrence Tone has questioned this assessment of the Spanish juntas on the grounds that it relies too much on the accounts of British officers and elites; these sources being patently unfair to the revolutionaries, "whom they despised for being Jacobins, Catholics, and Spaniards, not necessarily in that order."
  34. ^ Esdaille, pp. 304–305. Esdaille notes that the Junta of Seville declared itself the supreme government of Spain and tried to annex neighbouring juntas by force.
  35. ^ Gates, p. 487
  36. ^ Glover, p. 55
  37. ^ Chandler, p. 631
  38. ^ Churchill, p. 262
  39. ^ Gates, p. 114
  40. ^ Glover, p. 89
  41. ^ Gates, p. 128. Gates notes that the siege "was a demonstration the French army was never to forget and ... it was to inspire Spaniards to maintain replica struggles that have few parallels in the history of war.
  42. ^ Gates, p. 127. The military garrison of 44,000 left 8,000 survivors, 1,500 of them ill.
  43. ^ Glover, p. 89. 10,000 of these were French.
  44. ^ David A. Bell, Napoleon's Total War,
  45. ^ Later on, this number would grow to 50,000 in the army and another 50,000 in militias, in addition to 120,000 ordenanças and volunteer units.
  46. ^ Gates, p. 177
  47. ^ P. Guedalla, p. 186
  48. ^ Grant, p. 209
  49. ^ Glover, p. 10
  50. ^ Chandler, p. 746
  51. ^ Esdaile, pp. 505–507
  52. ^ Oman (1908), Vol. III, p. 418
  53. ^ GMT Games — Wellington


Further reading

  • Esdaile, Charles J. Fighting Napoleon Yale University Press, 2004, ISBN 0300101120.
  • Esdaile, Charles J. The Spanish Army in the Peninsular War Manchester University Press, 1988, ISBN 0719025389.
  • Fletcher, Ian Peninsular War; Aspects of the Struggle for the Iberian Peninsula Spellmount Publishers, 2003, ISBN 1873376820.
  • Fletcher, Ian (ed.) The Campaigns of Wellington, (3 vols), Vol 1. The Peninsular War 1808–1811; Vol. 2. The Peninsular War 1812–1814, The Folio Society, 2007.
  • Goya, Francisco The Disasters of War Dover Publications, 1967, ISBN 0486218724.
  • Griffith, Paddy A History of the Peninsular War: Modern Studies of the War in Spain and Portugal, 1808-14 v. 9 Greenhill Books, 1999, ISBN 185367348X.
  • Lovett, Gabriel H. Napoleon and the Birth of Modern Spain New York UP, 1965, ISBN 0814702678.
  • Napier, William. The War in the Peninsula (6 vols), London: John Murray (Vol 1), and private (Vols 2-6), 1828-40.
  • Oman, Charles. The History of the Peninsular War (7 vols), Oxford, 1903-30.
  • Rathbone, Julian Wellington's War, Michael Joseph, 1984, ISBN 0718123964
  • Suchet, Marshal Duke D'Albufera Memoirs of the War in Spain Pete Kautz, 2007, 2 volumes: ISBN 1858184770 & ISBN 1858184762.
  • Urban, Mark. Rifles: Six years with Wellington's legendary sharpshooters Pub Faber & Faber, 2003. ISBN 0571216811
  • Urban, Mark. The Man who Broke Napoleon's Codes. Faber and Faber Ltd, London 2001. ISBN 0571205135

External links

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

PENINSULAR WAR (1808-14). This important war, the conduct and result of which greatly enhanced the prestige of British arms, had for its main object the freedom of the Peninsula of Spain and Portugal from the domination of Napoleon; and hence it deri'ves its name, though it terminated upon the soil of France.

Nelson having destroyed the French fleet at Trafalgar, Napoleon feared the possibility of a British army being landed on the Peninsular coasts, whence in conjunction with Portuguese and Spanish forces it might attack France from the south. He therefore called upon Portugal, in August 1807, to comply with his Berlin decree of the 21st of November 1806, under which continental nations were to close their ports to British subjects, and have no communication with Great Britain. At the same time he persuaded the weak king of Spain (Charles IV.) and his corrupt minister Godoy to permit a French army to pass through Spain towards Portugal; while under a secret treaty signed at Fontainebleau on the 27th of October 1807 Spanish troops were to support the French. Portugal was to be subsequently divided between Spain and France, and a new principality of the Algarve was to be carved out for Godoy. Portugal remonstrated against Napoleon's demands, and a French corps (30,000) under General Junot was instantly despatched to Lisbon. Upon its approach the prince regent fled, and the country was occupied by Junot, most of the Portuguese troops being disbanded or sent abroad. Napoleon induced the king of Spain to allow French troops to occupy the country and to send the flower of the Spanish forces (15,000) under the marquis of Romana 1 to assist the French on the Baltic. Then Dupont de l'Etang (25,000) was ordered to cross the Bidassoa on the 22nd of November 1807; and by the 8th of January 1808 he had reached Burgos and Valladolid. Marshal Moncey with a corps occupied Biscay and Navarre; Duhesme with a division entered Catalonia; and a little later Bessieres with another corps had been brought up. There were now about ioo,000 French soldiers in Spain, and Murat, grand duke of Berg, as "lieutenant for the emperor," entered Madrid. During February and March 1808 the frontier fortresses of Pampeluna, St Sebastian, Barcelona and Figueras were treacherously occupied and Spain lay at the feet of Napoleon. The Spanish people, in an outburst of fury against the king and Godoy, forced the former to abdicate in favour of his son Ferdinand; but the inhabitants of Madrid having (May 2,18°8) risen against the French, Napoleon refused to recognize Ferdinand; both he and the king were compelled to renounce their rights to the throne, and a mercenary council of regency having been induced to desire the French emperor to make his brother, Joseph Bonaparte, king, he acceded to their request.2 The mask was now completely thrown off, and Spain and Portugal rose against the French. Provincial "juntas" (committees of government) were organized; appeals for assistance made to the British government, which granted arms, money and supplies, and it was resolved to despatch a British force to the Peninsula. Before it landed, the French under Dupont, Moncey and Marshal Bessieres (75,000) had occupied parts of Biscay, Navarre, Aragon and the Castiles, holding Madrid and Toledo, while General Duhesme (14,000) was in Catalonia. Moncey (7000) had marched towards the city of Valencia, but been repulsed in attempting to storm it (June 28); Bessieres had defeated the Spanish general Joachim Blake at Medina de Rio Seco (June 14, 1808) and Dupont (13,000) had been detached (May 24) from Madrid to reduce Seville and Cadiz in Andalusia. Spanish levies, numbering nearly ioo,000 regulars and militia, brave and enthusiastic, but without organization, sufficient training, or a commander-in-chief, had collected together; 30,000 being in Andalusia, a similar number in Galicia, and others in Valencia and Estremadura, but few in the central portion of Spain.

At this juncture Dupont, moving upon Cadiz, met with a reverse which greatly influenced the course of the Peninsular War. On the 7th of June 1808 he had sacked Cordova; but while he was laden with its spoils the Spanish general Castanos with the army of Andalusia (30,000), and also a large body of armed peasantry, approached. Falling back to Andujar, where he was reinforced to 22,000 strong, Dupont detached a force to hold the mountain passes in his rear, whereupon the Spaniards interposed between the detachment and the main body and seized Baylen. Failing to dislodge them, and surrounded by hostile troops and an infuriated peasantry, Dupont capitulated with over Battle of 20,000 men. This victory, together with the in- Baylen, July trepid defence of Saragossa by the Spanish general l9 ' 1808. Jose Palafox (June 15 to August 13, 1808) temporarily paralysed the French and created unbounded enthusiasm in Spain. Duhesme, having failed to take Gerona, was blockaded in Barcelona, Joseph fled from Madrid (Aug. 1, 1808), and the French forces closed to their rear to defend their communications with France. The British troops were directed towards Lisbon and Cadiz, in order to secure these harbours, to prevent the subjugation of Andalusia, and to operate up the basins of the Guadiana, Tagus and Douro into Spain. The British force consisted of 9000 men from Cork, under Sir Arthur Wellesley - at first in chief command; 5000 from Gibraltar, under General (Sir Brent) Spencer; and io,000 under Sir John Moore coming from Sweden; Wellesley and Moore being directed towards Portugal, and Spencer to Cadiz. On the 1st of August 1808 1 They subsequently escaped from Jutland, on British vessels, and reached Santander in October 1808.

The king, the queen and Godoy were eventually removed to Rome, and Ferdinand to Valengay in France.

Wellesley began to land his troops, unopposed, near Figueira da Foz at the mouth of the Mondego; and the Spanish victory of Baylen having relieved Cadiz from danger, Spencer now joined him, and, without waiting for Moore the army, under 15,000 in all (which included some Portuguese)"with 18 guns, advanced towards Lisbon.

Campaign in Portugal, 1808.--The first skirmish took place at Obidos on the 15th of August 1808, against Delaborde's division (5000 men with 5 guns), which fell back to Roleia (Rorica or Roliga). A battle took place here (Aug. 17) in which Sir Arthur Wellesley attacked and drove him from two successive positions. The allied loss was about 500: the French 600 and three guns.' On the 20th of August the Allies, strengthened by the arrival of two more brigades (4000 men), occupied some heights north of Vimiera (Vimeira or Vimeiro) where the roads branch off to Torres Vedras and Mafra. Wellesley meant to turn the defile of Torres Vedras by Mafra at once if possible; but on this night Sir Harry Burrard, his senior, arrived off Vimiera, and though he did not land, gave instructions to wait for Sir John Moore. On the 21st of August the Allies were attacked by Junot at Vimiera, who, leaving a force at Lisbon, had come up to reinforce Delaborde. In this battle the Allies Battle of numbered about 18,000 with 18 guns, French nearly Vimiera, 14,000, with 20 guns. Junot, believing the allied August21, left to be weakly held, attacked it without reconnoitring, but Wellesley's regiments, marched thither behind the heights, sprang up in line; and under their volleys and bayonet charge, supported by artillery fire, Junot's deep columns were driven off the direct road to Lisbon. The losses were: Allies about Boo, French 2000 and 13 guns. It was now again Wellesley's wish to advance and seize Torres Vedras; but Sir Hew Dalrymple, having at this moment assumed command, decided otherwise. On the 2nd of August Junot, knowing of the approach of Moore with reinforcements, and afraid of a revolt in Lisbon, opened negotiations, which resulted in the Convention of Cintra 2 (Aug. 30, 1808), under which the French evacuated Portugal, on condition that they were sent with their artillery and arms to France. Thus this campaign had been rapidly brought to a satisfactory conclusion; and Sir Arthur Wellesley had already given proof of his exceptional gifts as a leader. In England however a cry was raised that Junot should have been forced to an absolutely unconditional surrender; and Sir Arthur Wellesley, Sir Hew Dalrymple and Sir Harry Burrard 3 were brought before a court of inquiry in London. This acquitted them of blame, and Sir John Moore in the meantime after the departure of Dalrymple (Oct. 6, 1808) had assumed command of the allied army in Portugal, now about 32,000 strong.

Table of contents

Moore's Campaign in Spain, 1808-9

The British government notified to Sir John Moore that some io,000 men were to be sent to Corunna under Sir David Baird; that he, with 20,000, was to join him, and then both act in concert with the Spanish armies. As the conduct of this campaign was largely influenced by the operations of the Spanish forces, it is necessary to mention their positions, and also the fact that greater reliance had been placed, both in England and Spain, upon them than future events justified. On the 26th of October 1808, when Moore's troops had left Lisbon to join Baird, the French still held a defensive position behind the Ebro; Bessieres being in the basin of Vitoria, Marshal Ney north-west of Logrono, and Moncey covering Pampeluna, and near Sanguessa. With the garrisons of Biscay, Navarre, and a reserve at Bayonne, their strength was about 75,000 men. Palafox (20,000) was near Saragossa and observing Sanguessa; Castanos with the victors of Baylen" In this account of the war the losses and numbers engaged in different battles are given approximately only; and the former include killed, wounded and missing. Historians differ much on these matters.

2 It was not, however, signed at Cintra, but at Lisbon, and was mainly negotiated near Torres Vedras.

The two latter were recalled from the Peninsula; Sir Arthur Wellesley had proceeded to London upon leave, and had only signed the armistice with Junot, not the convention itself.

(34,000) west and south of Tudela and near Logrono; Blake (32,000) east of Reynosa, having captured. Bilbao; Count de Belvedere (ii,000) near Burgos; reserves (57,000) were assembling about Segovia, Talavera and Cordova; Catalonia was held by 23,000, and Madrid had been reoccupied.

Moore had to decide whether to join Baird by sea or land. To do so by sea at this season was to risk delay, while in moving by land he would have the Spanish armies between him and the French. For these reasons he marched by land; and as the roads north of the Tagus were deemed impassable for guns, while transport and supplies for a large force were also difficult to procure, he sent Sir John Hope, with the artillery, cavalry and reserve ammunition column, south of the river, through Badajoz to Almaraz, to move thence through Talavera, Madrid and the Escurial Pass, involving a considerable detour; while he himself with the infantry, marching by successive divisions, took the shorter roads north of the Tagus through Coimbra and Almeida, and also by Alcantara and Coria to Ciudad Rodrigo and Salamanca. Baird was to move south through Galicia to meet him, and the army was to concentrate at Valladolid, Burgos, or whatever point might seem later on to be best. But as Moore was moving forward, the whole situation in Spain changed. Napoleon's forces, now increased to some 200,000 men present and more following, were assuming the offensive, and he himself on the 30th of October - had left Paris to place himself at their head. Before them the Spaniards were routed in every direction: Castanos was defeated near Logrono (Oct. 27); Castanos and Palafox at Tudela (Nov. 23); Blake at Zornoza (Oct. 29), Espinosa (Nov. 11) and Reynosa (Nov. 13); and Belvedere at Gamonal, near Burgos (Nov. 10). Thus when Moore reached Salamanca (Nov. 28) Baird was at Astorga; Hope at the Escurial Pass; Napoleon himself at Aranda; and French troops at Valladolid, Arevalo and Segovia; so that the French were nearer than either Baird or Hope to Moore at Salamanca. Moore was ignorant of their exact position and strength, but he knew that Valladolid had been occupied, and so his first orders were that Baird should fall back to Galicia and Hope to Portugal. But these were soon changed, and he now took the important resolution of striking a blow for Spain, and for the defenders of Madrid, by attacking Napoleon's communications with France. Hope having joined him through Avila, and magazines having been formed at Benavente, Astorga and Lugo, in case of retreat in that direction, he moved forward, and on the 13th of December approached the Douro, at and near Rueda east of Toro. Here he learnt that Madrid had fallen to Napoleon (Dec. 3) after he had by a brilliant charge of the Polish lancers and chasseurs of the Guard forced the Somosierra Pass (Nov. 30) and in another action stormed the Retiro commanding Madrid itself (Dec. 3); that the French were pressing on towards Lisbon and Andalusia; that Napoleon was unaware of his vicinity, and that Soult's corps, isolated on the Carrion River, had been ordered towards Benavente. He then finally decided to attack Soult (intending subsequently to fall back through Galicia) and ordered up transports from Lisbon to Corunna and Vigo; thus changing his base from Portugal to the north-west of Spain; Blake's Spanish army, now rallying under the marquis de la Romana near Leon, was to co-operate, but was able to give little effective aid.

On the 10th of December ' Baird joined Moore near Mayorga, and a brilliant cavalry combat now took place at Sahagun, in which the British hussar brigade distinguished itself. But on the 23rd of December, when Moore was at Sahagun and about to attack Soult, he learnt that overwhelming French forces were hastening towards him, so withdrew across the Esla, near Benevente (Dec. 28), destroying the bridge there. Napoleon, directly he realized Moore's proximity, had ordered Soult to Astorga to cut him off from Galicia; recalled his other troops from their march towards Lisbon and Andalusia, and, with 50,000 men and 150 guns, had left Madrid himself (Dec. 22). He traversed over too m. in less than five days across the snowcovered Escurial Pass, reaching Tordesillas on the Douro on the 26th of December. Hence he wrote to Soult, "If the English pass to-day in their position (which he believed to be Sahagun) they are lost." But Moore had passed Astorga by the 31st of December, where Napoleon arrived on the 1st of January 1809. Thence he turned back, with a large portion of his army towards France, leaving Soult with over 40,000 men to follow Moore.

On the "Retreat to Corunna" fatigue, wet and bitter cold, combined with the sense of an enforced retreat, shook the discipline of Moore's army; but he reached Corunna on the 11th of January 1809, where he took up a position across the road from Lugo, with his left on the river Mero. On the 14th of January the transports arrived; and on the 16th Soult attacked. Battle of In this battle the French numbered about 20,000 with Corunna, 4 o guns; the British 15,000 with 9 very light guns. January Soult failed to dislodge the British, and Moore was 1809. about to deliver a counter-attack when he himself fell mortally wounded. Baird was also wounded, and as night was approaching, Hope suspended the advance, and subsequently embarked the army, with scarcely any further loss. The British casualties were about 1000, the French 2000. When the troops landed in England, half clothed and half shod, their leader's conduct of the campaign was at first blamed, but his reputation as a general rests solidly upon these facts, that when Napoleon in person, having nearly 300,000 men in Spain, had stretched forth his hand to seize Portugal and Andalusia, Moore with 30,000, forced him to withdraw it, and follow him to Corunna, escaping at the same time from his grasp. Certainly a notable achievement.

Campaign in Portugal and Spain, 1809

On the 22ndof April 1809 Sir Arthur Wellesley reached Lisbon. By this time, French armies, to a great extent controlled by Napoleon from a distance, had advanced - Soult from Galicia to capture Oporto and Lisbon (with General Lapisse from Salamanca moving on his left towards Abrantes) and Marshal Victor, still farther. to the left, with a siege train to take Badajoz, Merida and subsequently Cadiz. Soult (over 20,000), leaving Ney in Galicia, had taken and sacked Oporto (March 29, 1809); but the Portuguese having closed upon his rear and occupied Vigo, he halted, detaching a force to Amarante to keep open the road to Braganza and asked for reinforcements. Victor had crossed the Tagus, and defeated Cuesta at Medellin (March 28, 1809); but, surrounded by insurgents, he also had halted; Lapisse had joined him, and together they were near Merida, 30,000 strong. On the allied side the British (25,000), including some German auxiliaries, were about Leiria: the Portuguese regular troops (16,000) near Thomar; and some thousands of Portuguese militia were observing Soult in the north of Portugal, a body under Silveira being at Amarante, which Soult was now approaching. Much progress had been made in the organization and training of the Portuguese levies; Major-General William Carr Beresford, with the rank of marshal, was placed at their head. Of the Spaniards, Palafox, after his defeat at Tudela had most gallantly defended Saragossa a second time (Dec. 20, 1808-Feb. 20, 1809); the Catalonians, after reverses at Molins de Rey (Dec. 21, 1808) and at Valls (Feb. 25, 1809) had taken refuge in Tarragona; and Rosas had fallen (Dec. 5, 1808) to the French general Gouvion St Cyr who, having relieved Barcelona, was besieging Gerona. Romana's force was now near Orense in Galicia. A supreme junta had been formed which could nominally assemble about ioo,000 men, but jealousy among its members was rife, and they still declined to appoint any commander-in-chief.

On the 5th of May 1809, Wellesley moved towards the river Douro, having detached Beresford to seize Amarante, from which the French had now driven Silveira. Soult Passage of expected the passage of the Douro to be attempted the Douro, near its mouth, with fishing craft; but Wellesley, by May 12,1809, a daring surprise, crossed (May 12) close above Oporto, and also by a ford higher up. After some fighting Oporto was taken, and Soult driven back. The Portuguese being in his rear, and Wellesley closing with him, the only good road of retreat available lay through Amarante, but he now learned that Beresford had taken this important point from Silveira; so he was then compelled, abandoning his guns and much baggage, to escape, with a loss of some s000 men, over the mountains of the Sierra Catalina to Salamonde, and thence to Orense.

During the above operations, Victor, with Lapisse, had forced the passage of the Tagus at Alcantara but, on Wellesley returning to Abrantes, he retired. News having been received that Napoleon had suffered a serious check at the battle of Aspern, near Vienna (May 22, 1809), Wellesley next determined - leaving Beresford (20,000) near Ciudad Rodrigo - to move with 22,000 men, in conjunction with Cuesta's Spanish army (40,000) towards Madrid against Victor, who, with 25,000 supported by King Joseph (50,000) covering the capital, was near Talavera. Sir Robert Wilson with 4000 Portuguese from Salamanca, and a Spanish force under Venegas (25,000) from Carolina, were to co-operate and occupy Joseph, by closing upon Madrid. Cuesta, during the advance up the valley of the Tagus, was to occupy the pass of Banos on the left flank; the Spanish authorities were to supply provisions, and Venegas was to be at Arganda, near Madrid, by the 22nd or 23rd of July; but none of these arrangements were duly carried out, and it was on this that the remainder of the campaign turned. Writing to Soult from Austria, Napoleon had placed the corps of Ney and Mortier under his orders, and said: "Wellesley will most likely advance by the Tagus against Madrid; in that case, pass the mountains, fall on his flank and rear, and crush him." By the 10th of July Cuesta had joined Wellesley at Oropesa;, and both then moved forward to Talavera, Victor falling back before them: but Cuesta, irritable and jealous, Battle of would not work cordially with Wellesley; Venegas - Talavera, counter-ordered it is said by the Spanish junta - did July 27, 28, not go to Arganda, and Wilson, though he advanced 1809. close to Madrid, was forced to retire, so that Joseph joined Victor, and the united force attacked the Allies at Talavera de la Reina on the Tagus. The battle lasted for two days, and ended in the defeat of the French, who fell back towards Madrid.' Owing to want of supplies, the British had fought in a half-starved condition; and Wellesley now learnt to his surprise that Soult had passed the mountains and was in his rear. Having turned about, he was on the march to attack him, when he heard (Aug. 23) that not Soult's corps alone, but three French corps, had come through the pass of Banos without opposition; that Soult himself was at Naval Moral, between him and the bridge of Almaraz on the Tagus, and that Cuesta was retreating from Talavera. Wellesley's force was now in a dangerous position: but by withdrawing at once across the Tagus at Arzobispo, he reached Jaraicejo and Almaraz (by the south bank) blowing up the bridge at Almaraz, and thence moved, through Merida, northwards to the banks of the Agueda,. commencing to fortify the country around Lisbon.

Elsewhere in the Peninsula during this year, Blake, now in Catalonia, after routing Suchet at Alcaniz (May 23, 1809), was defeated by him at Maria (June 15) and at Belchite (June 18); Venegas, by King Joseph and Sebastiani, at Almonacid on the 11th of August; Del Parque (20,000), after a previous victory near Salamanca (Oct. 18), was overthrown at Alba de Tormes by General Marchand (Nov. 28); the old forces of Venegas and Cuesta (50,000), now united under Areizaga, were decisively routed by King Joseph at Ocana (Nov.19); and Gerona after a gallant defence, had surrendered to Augereau (Dec. 10).

Sir Arthur Wellesley was for this campaign created Baron Douro and Viscount Wellington. He was made captain-general by Spain, and marshal-general by Portugal. But his experience after Talavera had been akin to that of Moore; his expectations from the Spaniards had not been realized; he had been almost intercepted by the French, and he had narrowly escaped from a critical position. Henceforth he resisted all proposals for joint operations, on any large scale, with Spanish armies not under his own direct command.

I After the battle the Light Division, under Robert Craufurd, joined Wellesley. In the endeavour to reach the field in time it had covered, in heavy marching order, over 50 m. in 25 hours, in hot July weather.

Campaign in Portugal, 18ro. - Napoleon, having avenged Aspern by the victory of Wagram (July 6, 1809), despatched to Spain large reinforcements destined to increase his army there to about 370,000 men. Marshal Massena with 120,000, including the corps of Ney, Junot, Reynier and some of the Imperial Guard, was to operate from Salamanca against Portugal; but first Soult, appointed major-general of the army in Spain (equivalent to chief of the staff), was, with the corps of Victor, Mortier and Sebastiani (70,000), to reduce Andalusia. Soult (Jan. 31, 1810) occupied Seville and escaping thence to Cadiz, the Supreme Junta resigned its powers to a regency of five members (Feb. 2, 1810). Cadiz was invested by Victor's corps (Feb. 4), and then Soult halted, waiting for Massena, who arrived at Valladolid on the 15th of May.

In England a party in parliament were urging the withdrawal of the British troops, and any reverse to the allied arms would have strengthened its hands. Wellington's policy was thus cautious and defensive, and he had already commenced the since famous lines of Torres Vedras round Lisbon. In June 18to his headquarters were at Celorico. With about 35,000 British, 30,000 Portuguese regular troops and 30,000 Portuguese militia, he watched the roads leading into Portugal past Ciudad Rodrigo to the north, and Badajoz to the south of the Tagus, as also the line of the Douro and the country between the Elga and the Ponsul.

Soult having been instructed to co-operate by taking Badajoz and Elvas, Massena, early in June 18to, moved forward, and Ciudad Rodrigo surrendered to him (June to). Next pushing back a British force under Craufurd, he invested Almeida, taking it on the 27th of August. Then calling up Reynier, who during this had moved on his left towards Alcantara, he marched down the right bank of the Mondego, and entered Viseu (Sept. 21). Wellington fell back before him down the left bank, ordering up Rowland Hill's force from the Badajoz road, the peasantry having been previously called upon to destroy their crops and retire within the lines of Torres Vedras. A little north of Coimbra, the road which Massena followed crossed the Sierra de Bussaco (Busaco), a very strong position where Wellington resolved to offer him battle. Massena, superior in numbers and over-confident, made a direct attack upon the heights on the 27th of September 1810: his strength being about 60,000, while that of the Allies was about 50,000, of whom nearly half were Portuguese. After a stern conflict the French were 27, 1810. repulsed, the loss being five generals and nearly 5000 men, while the Allies lost about 1300. The next day Massena turned the Sierra by the Boyalva Pass and Sardao, which latter place, owing to an error, had not been occupied by the Portuguese, and Wellington then retreated by Coimbra and Leiria to the lines, which he entered on the 11th of October, having within them fully ioo,000 able-bodied men.

The celebrated "Lines of Torres Vedras" were defensive works designed to resist any army which Napoleon could send against them. They consisted of three great lines, strengthened by about 150 redoubts, and earthworks Vedras, of various descriptions, mounting some 600 cannon; 1810-11. the outer line, nearly 30 m. long, stretching over heights north of Lisbon, from the Tagus to the sea. As Massena advanced, the Portuguese closing upon his rear retook Coimbra (Oct. 7), and when he neared the lines, astounded at their strength, he sent General Foy to the emperor to ask for reinforcements. After an effort, defeated by Hill, to cross the Tagus, he withdrew (Nov. 15) to Santarem. This practically closed Wellington's operations for the year 1810, his policy now being not to lose men in battle, but to reduce Massena by hunger and distress.

In other parts of Spain, Augereau had taken Hostalrich (May to); captured Lerida (May 14); Mequinenza (June 8); and invested Tortosa (Dec. 15). The Spanish levies had been unable to contribute much aid to the Allies; the French having subdued almost all Spain, and being now in possession of Ciudad Rodrigo and Almeida. On the other hand Wellington still held Lisbon with parts of Portugal, Elvas and Badajoz, for Soult had not felt disposed to attempt the capture of the last two fortresses.

Campaign of /8//. - Napoleon, whose attention was now directed towards Russia, refused to reinforce .Massena, but enjoined Soult to aid him by moving against Badajoz. Soult, therefore, leaving Victor before Cadiz, invested Badajoz (Jan. 26, 1811) and took it from the Spaniards (March to). With the hope of raising the blockade of Cadiz, a force under Sir Thomas Graham (afterwards Lord Lynedoch [q.v.]) left that harbour by sea, and joining with Spanish troops near Tarifa, advanced by land against Victor's blockading force, a Spanish general, La Pena, being in chief command. As they neared Barrosa, Victor attacked them, the Allies numbering in the battle about 13,000 with 24 guns, 4000 being British; the French 9000, actually engaged, with 14 guns; but with 5000 more a few miles off and others in the French lines. Hard fighting, chiefly between the French and British, now ensued, and at one time the Barrosa ridge, the key of the position left by La Pena's orders, practically undefended, 1811. fell into the French hands: but Graham by a resolute counter-attack regained it, and Victor was in the end driven back. La Pena, who had in the battle itself failed to give proper support to Graham, would not pursue, and Graham declining to carry on further operations with him, re-entered Cadiz. The French afterwards resumed the blockade, so that although Barrosa was an allied victory, its object was not attained. The British loss was about 1200; the French 2000, 6 guns and an eagle.

On the day of the above battle Massena, having destroyed what guns he could not horse, and skilfully gained time by a feint against Abrantes, began his retreat from before the lines, through Coimbra and Espinhal. His army was in serious distress; he was in want of food and supplies; most of his horses were dead, and his men were deserting. Wellington followed, directing the Portuguese to remove all boats from the Mondego and Douro, and to break up roads north of the former river. Beresford was detached to succour Badajoz, but was soon recalled, as it had fallen to Soult. Ney, commanding Massena's rearguard, conducted the retreat with great ability. In the pursuit, Wellington adhered to his policy of husbanding his troops for future offensive operations, and let sickness and hunger do the work of the sword. This they effectually did. Nothing could well exceed the horrors of Massena's retreat. Rearguard actions were fought at Pombal (March to), Redinha (March 12) and Condeixa (March 13). Here Ney was directed to make a firm stand; but, ascertaining that the Portuguese were at Coimbra and the bridge there broken, and fearing to be cut off also from Murcella, he burnt Condeixa, and marched to Cazal Nova. An action took place here (March 14) and at Foz d'Arouce (March 15). Wellington now sent off Beresford with a force to retake Badajoz; and Massena, sacrificing much of his baggage and ammunition, reached Celorico and Guarda (March 21). Here he was attacked by Wellington (March 29) and, after a further engagement at Sabugal (April 3, 1811), he fell back through Ciudad to Salamanca, having lost in Portugal nearly 30,000 men, chiefly from want and disease, and 6000 in the retreat alone.

The key to the remaining operations of t811 lies in the importance attached by both Allies and French to the possession of the fortresses which guarded the two great roads from Portugal into Spain - Almeida and Ciudad Rodrigo on the northern, and Badajoz and Elvas on the southern road; all these except Elvas were in French hands. Wellington, on the 9th of April 1811, directed General Spencer to invest Almeida; he then set off himself to join Beresford before Badajoz, but after reconnoitring the fortress with his lieutenant he had at once to return north on the news that Massena was moving to relieve Almeida. On the 3rd of May Loison attacked him at Fuentes d'Onor near Almeida, and Massena coming up himself made a more serious attack on the 5th of May. The Allies numbered Battle of about 33,000, with 42 guns; the French 45,000 with 30 guns. The battle is chiefly notable for the steadi- donor, ness with which the allied right, covered by the Light Division in squares, changed position in presence of the French cavalry; and for the extraordinary feat of arms of Captain Norman Ramsay, R.H.A., in charging through the French cavalry with his guns. Massena failed to dislodge the Allies, and on the 8th of May withdrew to Salamanca, Almeida falling to Wellington on the r ith of May 181 r. The allied loss in the fighting on both days at Fuentes d'Onor was about r Soo: the French 3000.

In the meantime Soult (with 23,000 men and 50 guns), advancing to relieve Badajoz, compelled Beresford to suspend of the siege, and to take up a position with about 30,000 Battle Albuera, men (of whom 7000 were British) and 38 guns May behind the river Albuhera (or Albuera). Here 1811. Soult attacked him on the 16th of May. An unusually bloody battle ensued, in which the French efforts were chiefly directed against the allied right, held by the Spaniards. At one time the right appeared to be broken, and 6 guns were lost, when a gallant advance of Sir Lowry Cole's division restored the day, Soult then falling back towards Seville. The allied loss was about 7000 (including about half the British force); the French about 8000.

After this Wellington from Almeida rejoined Beresford and the siege of Badajoz was continued: but now Marshal Marmont, having succeeded Massena, was marching southwards to join Soult, and, two allied assaults of Badajoz having failed, Wellington withdrew. Subsequently, leaving Hill in the Alemtejo, he returned towards Almeida, and with 40,000 men commenced a blockade of Ciudad Rodrigo, his headquarters being at Fuente Guinaldo. Soult and Marmont now fell back, the former to Seville, the latter to the valley of the Tagus, south of the pass of Banos.

In September, Marmont joined with the army of the north under General Dorsenne, coming from Salamanca - their total force being 60,000, with roo guns - and succeeded (Sept. 25) in introducing a convoy of provisions into Ciudad Rodrigo. Before so superior a force, Wellington had not attempted to maintain the blockade; but on Marmont afterwards advancing towards him, he fought a rearguard action with him at El Bodon (Sept. 25), notable, as was Fuentes d'Onor, for the coolness with which the allied squares retired amidst the enemy's horsemen; and again at Fuente Guinaldo (Sept. 25 and 26) he maintained for 30 hours, with 15,000 men, a bold front against Marmont's army of 60,000, in order to save the Light Division from being cut off. At Aldea de Ponte there was a further sharp engagement (Sept. 27), but Wellington taking up a strong position near Sabugal, Marmont and Dorsenne withdrew once more to the valley of the Tagus and Salamanca respectively, and Wellington again blockaded Ciudad Rodrigo.

Thus terminated the main operations of this year. On the 28th of October r8 r r, Hill, by a very skilful surprise, captured Arroyo de los Molinos (between Badajoz and Trujillo), almost annihilating a French corps under Gerard; and in December 181r the French were repulsed in their efforts to capture Tarifa near Cadiz. In the east of Spain Suchet took Tortosa (Jan. 1, 1811); Tarragona (June 28); and Murviedro (Oct. 26), defeating Blake's relieving force, which then took refuge in Valencia. Macdonald also retook Figueras which the Spaniards had taken on the 9th of April 1811 (Aug. 19). Portugal had now been freed from the French, but they still held Ciudad Rodrigo and Badajoz, the two main gates into Spain.

Campaign in Spain, 1812

The campaign of 1812 marks an important stage in the war. Napoleon, with the Russian War in prospect, had early in the year withdrawn 30,000 men from Spain; and Wellington had begun to carry on what he termed a war of "magazines." Based on rivers (the navigation of which greatly improved) and the sea, he formed depots or magazines of provisions at many points, which enabled him always to take and keep the field. The French, on the other hand, had great difficulty in establishing any such reserves of food, owing to their practice of depending for sustenance entirely upon the country in which they were quartered. Wellington assumed the offensive, and by various movements and feints, aided the guerrilla bands by forcing the French corps to assemble in their districts, which not only greatly harassed them but also materially hindered the combination of their corps for concerted action. Having secretly got a battering train into Almeida and directed Hill, as a blind, to engage Soult by threatening Badajoz, he suddenly (Jan. 8, 1812) besieged Ciudad Rodrigo.

The French, still numbering nearly 200,000, now held the following positions: the Army of the North - Dorsenne (48,000) - was about the Pisuerga, in the Asturias, and along the northern coast; the Army of Portugal - Marmont (50,000) - mainly in the valley of the Tagus, but ordered to Salamanca; the Army of the South - Soult (55,000) - in Andalusia; the Army of the Centre - Joseph (ig,000) - about Madrid.

The siege of Ciudad Rodrigo was calculated in the ordinary course to require twenty-four days: but on it becoming known that Marmont was moving northward, the assault was Siege of delivered after twelve days only (Jan. r9). The Ciudad gallantry of the troops made it successful, though with Rodrigo, the loss of Generals Craufurd and McKinnon, and 1300 ulfrary s men, and Marmont's battering train of 150 guns here fell into the allied hands. Then, after a feint of passing on into Spain, Wellington rapidly marched south and, with 2 2,000 men, laid siege to Badajoz (March 17, 1812), Hill with 30,000 covering the siege near Merida. Wellington was hampered by want of time, and had to assault prematurely. Soult and Marmont having begun to move to relieve the garrison, the assault was delivered on the night of the 7th of April, and Siege of though the assailants failed at the breaches, the Badajoz, carnage at which was terrible, a very daring escalade March 17 to of one of the bastions and of the castle succeeded, Apr117, 1812. and Badajoz fell, Soult's pontoon train being taken in it. After the assault, some deplorable excesses were committed by the victorious troops. The allied loss was 3600 in the assault alone and 5000 in the entire siege.

The Allies had now got possession of the two great gates into Spain: and Hill, by an enterprise most skilfully carried out, destroyed (May 19) the Tagus bridge at Almaraz, by which Soult to the south of the river chiefly communicated with Marmont to the north. Wellington then, ostentatiously making preparations to enter Spain by the Badajoz line, once more turned northward, crossed the Tormes (June 17, 1812), and advanced to the Douro, behind which the French were drawn up. Marmont had erected at Salamanca some strong forts, the reduction of which occupied Wellington ten days, and cost him 600 men. The Allies and French now faced each other along the Douro to the Pisuerga. The river was high, and Wellington hoped that want of supplies would compel Marmont to retire, but in this he was disappointed.

On the 15th of July 1812, Marmont, after a feint against Wellington's left, suddenly, by a forced march, turned his right, and made rapidly towards the fords of Huerta and Alba on the Tormes. Some interesting manoeuvres now took place, Wellington moving parallel and close to Marmont, but more to the north, making for the fords of Aldea Lengua and Santa Marta on the Tormes nearer to Salamanca, and being under the belief that the Spaniards held the castle and ford at Alba on that river. But Marmont's manoeuvring and marching power had been underestimated, and on the 21st of July while Wellington's position covered Salamanca, and but indirectly his line of communications through Ciudad Rodrigo, Marmont had reached a point from which he hoped to interpose between Wellington and Portugal, on the Ciudad Rodrigo road. This he endeavoured to do on the 22nd of July 1812, which brought on the important battle of Salamanca (q.v.) in which Battle of Wellington gained a decisive victory, the French Salamanca, falling back to Valladolid and thence to Burgos. Wellington entered Valladolid (July 30), and thence 1812. marched against Joseph, who (July 21) had reached Blasco Sancho with reinforcements for Marmont. Joseph retired before him, and Wellington entered Madrid (Aug. 1 2, 1812), where, in the Retiro, 1700 men, 180 cannon, two eagles, and a quantity of stores were captured. Soult now raised the siege of Cadiz (Aug. 26), and evacuating Andalusia joined Suchet with some 55,000 men. Wellington then brought up Hill to Madrid.

On the 1st of September 1812, the French armies having begun once more to collect together, Wellington marched against the of the Army of the North, now under General Clause], and Siege Castle of laid siege to the castle of Burgos (Sept. 19) to secure Burgos, the road towards Santander on the coast. But the Sept. 19 to strength of the castle had been underrated; Oct. 21. Wellington had insufficient siege equipment and transport for heavy guns; five assaults failed, and Soult (having left Suchet in Valencia) and also the Army of Portugal were both approaching, so Wellington withdrew on the night of the Retreat 21st of October, and, directing the evacuation of from Madrid, commenced the "Retreat from Burgos." Burgos. In this retreat, although military operations were skilfully conducted, the Allies lost 7000 men, and discipline, as in that to Corunna, became much relaxed.

By November 1812, Hill having joined him at Salamanca, Wellington once more had gone into cantonments near Ciudad Rodrigo, and the French armies had again scattered for convenience of supply. In spite of the failure before Burgos, the successes of the campaign had been brilliant. In addition to the decisive victory of Salamanca, Madrid had been occupied, the siege of Cadiz raised, Andalusia freed, and Ciudad Rodrigo and Badajoz stormed. Early in January also the French had abandoned the siege of Tarifa, though Valencia had surrendered to them (Jan. 9). One important result of the campaign was that the Spanish Cortes nominated Wellington (Sept. 22, 1812) to the unfettered command of the Spanish armies. For the operations of this campaign Wellington was created earl, and subsequently marquess of Wellington; duke of Ciudad Rodrigo by Spain, and marquis of Torres Vedras by Portugal.

Campaign in Spain and the South of France, 1813

At the opening of 1813, Suchet, with 63,000 men, had been left to hold Valencia, Aragon and Catalonia; and the remainder of the French (about 13 7,000) occupied Leon, the central provinces and Biscay, guarding also the communications with France. Of these about 60,000 under Joseph were more immediately opposed to Wellington, and posted, in scattered detachments, from Toledo and Madrid behind the Tormes to the Douro, and along that river to the Esla. Wellington had further organized the Spanish forces - Castanos (40,000), with the guerrilla bands of Mina, Longa and others, was in Galicia, the Asturias and northern Spain; Copons (io,000) in Catalonia; Elio (20,000) in Murcia; Del Parque (12,000) in the Sierra Morena, and O'Donell (15,000) in Andalusia. More Portuguese troops had been raised, and reinforcements received from England, so that the Allies, without the Spaniards above alluded to, now numbered some 75,000 men, and from near the Coa watched the Douro and Tormes, their line stretching from their left near Lamego to the pass of Banos, Hill being on the right. The district of the Trasos-Montes, north of the Douro, about the Tamega, Tua and Sabor, was so rugged that Wellington was convinced that Joseph would expect him to advance by the south of the river. He therefore, moving by the south bank himself with Hill, to confirm Joseph in this expectation, crossed the Tormes near and above Salamanca, having previously - which was to be the decisive movement - detached Graham, with 40,000 men, to make his way, through the difficult district above mentioned, towards Braganza, and then, joining with the Spaniards, to turn Joseph's right. Graham, crossing the Douro near Lamego, carried out his laborious march with great energy, and Joseph retired precipitately from the Douro, behind the Pisuerga. The allied army, raised by the junction of the Spanish troops in Galicia to 90,000, now concentrated near Toro, and moved towards the Pisuerga, when Joseph, blowing up the castle of Burgos, fell back behind the Ebro. Once more Wellington turned his right, by a sweeping movement through Rocamunde and Puente Arenas near the source of the Ebro, when he retreated behind the Zadorra near the town of Vitoria.

Santander was now evacuated by the French, and the allied line of communications was changed to that port. On the 10th of June Wellington encamped along the river Bayas, and the next day attacked Joseph. For a description of the decisive battle of Vitoria (June 21, 1813), see Vitoria. In it Battle of King Joseph met with a crushing defeat, and, after Vitoria, it, the wreck of his army, cut off from the Vitoria- June 21, Bayonne road, escaped towards Pampeluna. Within 1813. a few days Madrid was evacuated, and all the French forces, with the exception of the garrisons of San Sebastian (3000), Pampeluna (3000), Santona (1500), and the troops under Suchet holding posts in Catalonia and Valencia, had retired across the Pyrenees into France. The Spanish peninsula was, to all intents and purposes, free from foreign domination, although the war was yet far from concluded. The French struggled gallantly to the close: but now a long succession of their leaders - Junot, Soult, Victor, Massena, Marmont, Joseph - had been in turn forced to recoil before 'Wellington; and while their troops fought henceforward under the depressing memory of many defeats, the Allies did so under the inspiriting influence of great successes, and with that absolute confidence in their chief which doubled their fighting power.

For this decisive campaign, Wellington was made a field marshal in the British army, and created duke of Victory 1 by the Portuguese government in Brazil. He now, with about 80,000 men, took up a position with his left (the Spaniards) on the Bidassoa near San Sebastian. Thence his line stretched along the Pyrenees by the passes of Vera, Echallar, Maya and Roncesvalles, to Altobiscar; his immediate object now being to reduce the fortresses of San Sebastian and Pampeluna. Not having sufficient materiel for two sieges, he laid siege to San Sebastian only, and blockaded Pampeluna. Sir Thomas Graham commenced the active siege of San Sebastian on the 10th of July 1813, but as Soult was approaching to its relief, the assault was ordered for daylight on the 24th. Unfortunately siege of San a conflagration breaking out near the breaches Sebastian, caused it to be postponed until nightfall, when, the July 10.24, breaches in the interval having been strengthened, 1813' it was delivered unsuccessfully and with heavy loss. Wellington then suspended the siege in order to meet Soult, who endeavoured (July 25) to turn the allied right, and reach Pampeluna. Attacking the passes of Maya and Roncesvalles, he obliged their defenders to retire, after sharp fighting, to a position of close to Sorauren, which, with 25,000 men, he the Pyre= attempted to carry (July 28). By this time Welling- nees,?u1y25 ton had reached it from the allied left; reinforcements to August2, were pressing up on both sides, and about 12,000 allied 1813. troops faced the French. A struggle, described by Wellington as "bludgeon work," now ensued, but all efforts to dislodge the Allies having failed, Soult, withdrawing, manoeuvred to his right towards San Sebastian. Wellington now assumed the offensive, and, in a series of engagements, drove the French back (Aug. 2) beyond the Pyrenees. These included Roncesvalles and Maya (July 25); Sorauren (July 28 and 30); Yanzi (Aug. 1); and Echallar and Ivantelly (Aug. 2), the total losses in them being about - Allies under 7000, French io,000. After this, Wellington renewing the siege of San Sebastian carried the place, excepting the castle, after a heavy expenditure of life (Aug. 31). Upon the day of its fall Soult attempted to relieve it, but StormofSan in the combats of Vera and St Marcial was repulsed. Sebastian, The castle surrendered on the 9th of September, August 31, the losses in the entire siege having been about - 1813' Allies 4000, French 2000. Wellington next determined to throw his left across the river Bidassoa to strengthen his own position, and secure the port of Fuenterrabia.

Now commenced a series of celebrated river passages, which had to be effected prior to the further invasion of France. At daylight on the 7th of October 1813 he crossed the Bidassoa in seven columns, and attacked the entire French position, which stretched in two heavily entrenched lines from north 1 Duque da Victoria, often incorrectly duke of Vitoria. The coincidence of the title with the place-name of the battle which had not yet been fought when the title was conferred, is curious, but accidental.

of the Irun-Bayonne road, along mountain spurs to the Great Rhune, 2800 ft. high. The decisive movement was a passage in strength near Fuenterrabia, to the astonishment of Passage of the the enemy, who in view of the width of the river Bidassoa, and the shifting sands, had thought the crossing October 7, impossible at that point. The French right was 1813. then rolled back, and Soult was unable to reinforce his right in time to retrieve the day. His works fell in succession after hard fighting, and he withdrew towards the river Nivelle. The loss was about - Allies, 1600; French, 1400. The passage of the Bidassoa "was a general's not a soldiers' battle" (Napier).

On the 31st of October Pampeluna surrendered, and Wellington was now anxious to drive Suchet from Catalonia before further invading France. The British government, however, in the interests of the continental powers, urged an immediate advance, so on the night of the 9th of November 1813 he brought up his right from the Pyrenean passes to the northward of Maya and towards the Nivelle. Soult's army (about 79,000), in three entrenched lines, stretched from the sea in front of St Jean de Luz along commanding ground to Amotz and thence, behind the river, to Mont Mondarin near the Nive. Each army had with it about 100 guns; and, during a heavy cannonade, Wellington on the 10th of November 1813 attacked this extended Passage of position of 16 m. in five columns, these being so the Nivelle, directed that after carrying Soult's advanced works Nov. 10, a mass of about 50,000 men converged towards the 1813. French centre near Amotz, where, after hard fighting, it swept away the 18,000 of the second line there opposed to it, cutting Soult's army in two. The French right then fell back to St Jean de Luz, the left towards points on the Nive. It was now late and the Allies, after moving a few miles down both banks of the Nivelle, bivouacked, while Soult, taking advantage of the respite, withdrew in the night to Bayonne. The allied loss was about 2700; that of the French 4000, 51 guns, and all their magazines. The next day Wellington closed in upon Bayonne from the sea to the left bank of the Nive.

After this there was a period of comparative inaction, though during it the French were driven from the bridges at Urdains and Cambo. The weather had become bad, and the Nive unfordable; but there were additional and serious causes of delay. The Portuguese and Spanish authorities were neglecting the payment and supply of their troops. Wellington had also difficulties of a similar kind with his own government, and also the Spanish soldiers, in revenge for many French outrages, had become guilty of grave excesses in France, so that Wellington took the extreme step of sending 25,000 of them back to Spain and resigning the command of their army, though his resignation was subsequently withdrawn. So great was the tension at this crisis that a rupture with Spain seemed possible. These matters, however, having been at length adjusted, Wellington, who in his cramped position between the sea and the Nive could not use his cavalry or artillery effectively, or interfere with the French supplies coming through St Jean Pied de Port, determined to occupy the right as well as the left bank of the Nive. He could not pass to that bank with his whole force while Soult held Bayonne, without exposing his own communications through Irun. Therefore, on the 9th of December 1813, after making a demonstration elsewhere, he effected the passage with Passage of a portion of his force only under Hill and Beresford, the Nive, near Ustaritz and Cambo, his loss being slight, and Dec. 9, thence pushed down the river towards Villefranque, 1813. where Soult barred his way across the road to Bayonne. The allied army was now divided into two portions by the Nive; and Soult from Bayonne at once took advantage of his central position to attack it with all his available force, first on the left bank and then on the right. On the morning of the 10th of December he fell, with 60,000 men and 40 guns, upon Hope, who with 30,000 men and 24 guns held a position from the sea, 3 m. south of Biarritz on a ridge behind two lakes (or tanks) through Arcangues towards the Nive. Desperate fighting now ensued, but fortunately, owing to the intersected ground, Soult was compelled to advance slowly, and in the end, Wellington coming up with Beresford from the right bank, the French retired baffled. On the i i th and 12th of Battles December there were engagements of a less severe before character, and finally on the 13th of December Soult B, or Battles ayonne of with 35,000 men made a vehement attack up the the Nive, right bank of the Nive against Hill, who with about Dec. 10-13, 14,000 men occupied some heights from Villefranque 1813. past St Pierre (Lostenia) to Vieux Moguerre. The conflict about St Pierre (Lostenia) was one of the most bloody of the war; but for hours Hill maintained his ground, and finally repulsed the French before Wellington, delayed by his pontoon bridge over the Nive having been swept away, arrived to his aid. The losses in the four days' fighting in the battles before Bayonne (or battles of the Nive) were - Allies about 5000, French about 7000. Both the British and Portuguese artillery, as well as infantry, greatly distinguished themselves in these battles.

In eastern Spain Suchet (April 11, 1813) had defeated Elio's Murcians at Yecla and Villena, but was subsequently routed by Sir John Murray' near Castalla (April 13), who then besieged Tarragona. The siege was abandoned after a time, but was later on renewed by Lord W. Bentinck. Suchet, after the battle of Vitoria, evacuated Tarragona (Aug. 17) but defeated Bentinck in the combat of Ordal (Sept. 13).

Campaign in the South of France, 1814. - When operations recommenced in February 1814 the French line extended from Bayonne up the north bank of the Adour to the Pau, thence bending south along the Bidouze to St Palais, with advanced posts on the Joyeuse and at St Jean Pied de Port. Wellington's left, under Hope, watched Bayonne, while Beresford, with Hill, observed the Adour and the Joyeuse, the right trending back till it reached Urcuray on the St Jean Pied de Port road. Exclusive of the garrison of Bayonne and other places, the available field force of Soult numbered about 41,000, while that of the Allies, deducting Hope's force observing Bayonne, was of much the same strength. It had now become Wellington's object to draw Soult away from Bayonne, in order that the allied army might, with less loss, cross the Adour and lay siege to the place on both banks of the river.

At its mouth the Adour was about 50o yds. wide, and its entrance from the sea by small vessels, except in the finest weather, was a perilous undertaking, owing to the shifting sands and a dangerous bar. On the other hand, the deep sandy soil near its banks made the transport of bridging materiel by land laborious, and almost certain of discovery. Wellington, convinced that no effort to bridge below Bayonne would be expected, decided to attempt it there, and collected at St Jean Pied de Port and Passages a large number of country vessels (termed chasse-marees). Then, leaving Hope with 30,000 men to watch Bayonne, he began an enveloping movement round Soult's left. Hill on the 14th and 15th of February, after a combat at Garris, drove the French posts beyond the Joyeuse; and Wellington then pressed these troops back over the Bidouze and Gave' de Mauleon to the Gave d'Oleron. Wellington's object in this was at once attained, for Soult, leaving only 10,000 men in Bayonne, came out and concentrated at Orthes on the Pau. Then Wellington (Feb. 19) proceeded to St Jean de Luz to superintend the despatch of boats to the Adour. Unfavourable weather, however, compelled him to leave this to Sir John Hope and Admiral Penrose, so returning to the Gave d'Oleron he crossed it, and faced Soult on the Pau (Feb. 25). Hope in the meantime, after feints higher up the Adour, succeeded (Feb. 22 and 23) in passing 600 men across Passage of the river in boats. The nature of the ground, the Adour, and there being no suspicion of an attempt at this Feb. 22 to point, led to the French coming out very tardily to 26, 1814. oppose them; and when they did, some Congreve rockets (then a novelty) threw them into confusion, so that the right bank was held until, on the morning of the 24th, the flotilla of 1 Commander of a British expedition from the Mediterranean islands.

2 "Gave" in the Pyrenees means a mountain stream or torrent.

chasse-marees appeared from St Jean de Luz, preceded by menof-war boats. Several men and vessels were lost in crossing the bar; but by noon on the 26th of February the bridge of 26 vessels had been thrown and secured; batteries and a boom placed to protect it, 8000 troops passed over, and the enemy's gunboats driven up the river. Bayonne was then invested on both banks as a preliminary to the siege.

On the 27th of February Wellington, having with little loss effected the passage of the Pau below Orthes, attacked Soult. In this battle the Allies and French were of about equal strength (3 7,000): the former having 48 guns, the latter 40. Soult held Battle of a strong position behind Orthes on heights command Orthes, ing the roads to Dax and St Sever. Beresford was Feb.27, directed to turn his right, if possible cutting him off 1814. from Dax, and Hill his left towards the St Sever road. Beresford's attack, after hard fighting over difficult ground, was repulsed, when Wellington, perceiving that the pursuing French had left a central part of the heights unoccupied, thrust up the Light Division into it, between Soult's right and centre. At the same time Hill, having found a ford above Orthes, was turning the French left, when Soult retreated just in time to save being cut off, withdrawing towards St Sever, which he reached on the 28th of February. The allied loss was about 2000; the French 4000 and 6 guns.

From St Sever Soult turned eastwards to Aire, where he covered the roads to Bordeaux and Toulouse. Beresford, with 12,000 men, was now sent to Bordeaux, which opened its gates as promised to the Allies. Driven by Hill from Aire on the 2nd of March 1814, Soult retired by Vic Bigorre, where there was a combat (March 19), and Tarbes, where there was a severe action (March 20), to Toulouse behind the Garonne. He endeavoured also to rouse the French peasantry against the Allies, but in vain, for Wellington's justice and moderation afforded them no grievances. Wellington wished to pass the Garonne above Toulouse in order to attack the city from the south - its weakest side - and interpose between Soult and Suchet. But finding it impracticable to operate in that direction, he left Hill on the west side and crossed at Grenade below Toulouse (April 3). When Beresford, who had now rejoined Wellington, had passed over, the bridge was swept away, which left him isolated on the right bank. But Soult did not attack; the bridge (April 8) was restored; Wellington crossed the Garonne and the Ers, and attacked Soult on the 10th of April. In the battle of Toulouse the French numbered about 40,000 (exclusive of the local National Guards) with 80 guns; the Allies under 52,000 with 64 of guns. Soult's position to the north and east of the Toulouse, city was exceedingly strong, consisting of the canal April10, of Languedoc, some fortified suburbs, and (to the 1814. extreme east) the commanding ridge of Mont Rave, crowned with redoubts and earthworks. Wellington's columns, under Beresford, were now called upon to make a flank march of some two miles, under artillery, and occasionally musketry, fire, being threatened also by cavalry, and then, while the Spanish troops assaulted the north of the ridge, to wheel up, mount the eastern slope, and carry the works. The Spaniards were repulsed, but Beresford gallantly took Mont Rave and Soult fell back behind the canal. On the 12th of April Wellington advanced to invest Toulouse from the south, but Soult on the night of the nth had retreated towards Villefranque, and Wellington then entered the city. The allied loss was about 5000; the French 3000. Thus, in the last great battle of the war, the courage and resolution of the soldiers of the Peninsular army were conspicuously illustrated.

On the 13th of April 1814 officers arrived with the announcement to both armies of the capture of Paris, the abdication of Napoleon, and the practical conclusion of peace; and on the 18th a convention, which included Suchet's force, was entered into between Wellington and Soult. Unfortunately, after Toulouse had fallen, the Allies and French, in a sortie from Bayonne on the 14th of April, each lost about 1000 men: so that some io,000 men fell after peace had virtually been made.

In the east, during this year (1814), Sir W. Clinton had, on the i 6th of January, attacked Suchet at Molins de Rey and blockaded Barcelona (Feb. 7); the French posts of Lerida, Mequinenza and Monzon had also been yielded up, and Suchet, on the 2nd of March, had crossed the Pyrenees into France. Figueras surrendered to Cuesta before the end of May; and peace was formally signed at Paris on the 30th of May.

Thus terminated the long and sanguinary struggle of the Peninsular War. The British troops were partly sent to England, and partly embarked at Bordeaux for America, with which country war had broken out (see American War Of 1812-1s): the Portuguese and Spanish recrossed the Pyrenees: the French army was dispersed throughout France: Louis XVIII. was restored to the French throne: and Napoleon was permitted to reside in the island of Elba, the sovereignty of which had been conceded to him by the allied powers. For the operations of this campaign Wellington was created marquess of Douro and duke of Wellington, and peerages were conferred upon Beresford, Graham and Hill.

The events of the Peninsular War, especially as narrated in the Wellington Despatches, are replete with instruction not only for the soldier, but also for the civil administrator. Even in a brief summary of the war one salient fact is noticeable, that all Wellington's reverses were in connexion with his sieges, for which his means were never adequate. In his many battles he was always victorious, his strategy eminently successful, his organizing and administrative power exceptionally great, his practical resource unlimited, his soldiers most courageous; but he never had an army fully complete in its departments and warlike equipment. He had no adequate corps of sappers and miners, or transport train. In 1812 tools and material of war for his sieges were often insufficient. In 1813, when he was before San Sebastian, the ammunition ran short; a battering train, long demanded, reached him not only some time after it was needed, but even then with only one day's provision of shot and shell. For the siege of Burgos heavy guns were available in store on the coast; but he neither had, nor could procure, the transport to bring them up. By resource and dogged determination Wellington rose superior to almost every difficulty, but he could not overcome all; and the main teaching of the Peninsular War turns upon the value of an army that is completely organized in its various branches before hostilities break out. (C. W. R.)/n==Authorities== - The Wellington Despatches, ed. Gurwood (London, 1834-1839); Supplementary Wellington Despatches (London, 1858-1861 and 1867-1872); Sir W. Napier, History of War in the Peninsula and South of France (London, 1828-1840); C. W. C. Oman, History of the Peninsular War (London, 1902); Sir J. Jones, Journals and Sieges in Spain, 1811-12 (London, 1814); and Account of the War in Spain, Portugal and South of France, 1808-14 (London, 1821); Sir J. F. Maurice, Diary of Sir John Moore (London, 1904); Commandant Balagny, Campagne de l'Empereur Napoleon en Espagne, 1808-1809 (Paris, 1902); Major-General C. W. Robinson, Wellington's Campaigns (London, 1907); Sir A. Alison, History of Europe, 1789-1815 (London, 1835-1842); T. Choumara, Considerations militaires sur les memoires du Marechal Suchet et sur la bataille de Toulouse (Paris, 1838); Commandant Clerc, Campagne du Marechal Soult dans les Pyrenees occidentales en 1813-14 (Paris, 1894); Memoires du Baron Marbot (Paris, 1891; Eng. trans. by A. J. Butler, London, 1902); H. R. Clinton, The War in the Peninsula, &c. (London, 1889); Marshal Suchet's Memoires (Paris, 1826; London, 1829); Captain L. Butler, Wellington's Operations in the Peninsula, 1808-14 (London, 1904); Batty, Campaign of the Left Wing of the Allied Army in the Western Pyrenees and South of France, 1813-14 (London, 1823); Foy, Histoire de la guerre de la Peninsule, F&c., sous Napoleon (Paris and London, 1827); Lord Londonderry, Narrative of the Peninsular War, 1808-13 (London, 1829); R. Southey, History of the Peninsular War (London, 1823-1832); Major A. Griffiths, Wellington and Waterloo (illustrated; London, 1898); Thiers, Histoire du consulat et de l'empire (Paris, 1845-1847; and translated by D. F. Campbell, London, 1845); Captain A. H. Marindin, The Salamanca Campaign (London, 1906); Marmont's Memoires (Paris, 1857); Colonel Sir A. S. Frazer, Letters during the Peninsular and Waterloo Campaigns (ed. by Major-General E. Sabine, London, 1859); Lieut.-Colonel W. Hill-James, Battles round Biarritz, Nivelle and the Nive (London, 1896); Battles round Biarritz, Garres and the Bridge of Boats (Edinburgh, 1897); H. B. Robinson, Memoirs of Lieutenant-General Sir T. Picton (London, 1835); G. C. Moore-Smith, Autobiography of Lieutenant-General Sir Harry Smith (London, 1901); Life of Jolly Colborne (F.-M. Lord Seaton) (London, 1903); Rev. A. H. Crauford, x xl. 4 General Craufurd and his Light Division (London, 1891); Sir George Larpent, Private Journal of F. S. Larpent during the Peninsular War (London, 1853); Major-General H. D. Hutchinson, Operations in the Peninsula, 1808-9 (London, 1905); The Dickson MSS., being Journals of Major-General Sir Alexander Dickson during the Peninsular War (Woolwich, 1907).

Periscola, a town of eastern Spain, in the province of Castellon de la Plana, and on the Mediterranean Sea, 5 m. by road S. of Benicarlo. Pop. (1900), 3142. Peniscola, often called the Gibraltar of Valencia, is a fortified seaport, with a lighthouse, built on a rocky headland about 220 ft. high, and only joined to the mainland by a narrow strip of sand. Originally a Moorish stronghold, it was captured in 1233 by James I. of Aragon, who entrusted it to the Knights Templar. In the 14th century it was garrisoned by the knights of Montesa, and in 1420 it reverted to the Crown. From 1415 it was the home of the schismatic pope Benedict XIII. (Pedro de Luna), whose name is commemorated in the Bufador de Papa Luna, a curious cavern with a landward entrance through which the sea-water escapes in clouds of spray.

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