Index to the Articles
Welcome to our new Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars homepage. We are going to use this page to bring together all of our resources about the first 'great war'. If you want to find out what articles we have on this period, go to the Napoleonic special subject index, where we listevery relevant article. If you want to find out more, then have a look at our recommended books, in association with Amazon in the UK, US and Canada. We are also starting to develop a list of Napoleonic Websites, which we expect to expand.
Appropriately, we start our Napoleonic month with a biography of Napoleon himself, one of the few people to give his name to an historical period. He is still a controversial figure - opinion is divided between those who see him as a military dictator, who tried to impose his rule across all of Europe and those who see him as a great liberator and law giver, who overthrew corrupt regimes across the continent.
At the start of our themed month, we had 46 articles about the Napoleonic Wars, containing 28,000 words. At the end, we moved on to 74 articles
We now have 786 articles and 812,200 words on the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars
Jean-Baptiste Kléber (1753-1800) was one of the most able of the French revolutionary generals, and is most famous for his short period in command of the French army in Egypt.
The combat of Sumbilla (1 August 1813) was a rearguard action in which two British divisions attempted to catch up with Soult’s troops retreating down the Bidassoa valley in the aftermath of their defeat at the second battle of Sorauren.
The combat of Yanzi (1 August 1813) saw a small Spanish force badly disrupt Soult’s retreat down the Bidassoa valley in the aftermath of his defeat at the second battle of Sorauren.
The first battle of Sorauren (28 July 1813) was Soult’s best chance to win a significant victory during the battle of the Pyrenees, but by the time he attacked Wellington had reached the scene with reinforcements, and the French attack was repulsed.
The second battle of Sorauren (30 July 1813) was Soult’s last attempt to win a significant victory during the battle of the Pyrenees, and saw an attack along a longer front than during the first battle repulsed by Wellington.
The battle of Roncesvalles (25 July 1813) was part of the wider battle of the Pyrenees, and saw Soult’s main attack held up all day by British and Spanish forces at the top of the Roncesvalles pass, before General Cole decided that his position was too vulnerable and ordered a retreat on the night of 25-26 July.
The combat of Linzoain (26 July 1813) was a minor rearguard action fought in the aftermath of the battle of Roncesvalles, and was a British delaying action, greatly aided by a lack of interest in attacking on the part of the French.
The battle of the Pyrenees (25 July-2 August 1813) saw Marshal Soult unexpectedly launch an offensive across the mountains in an attempt to raise the siege of Pamplona. After some early successes he was turned back to the north of the city, and was lucky to escape back into France with his army largely intact.
The battle of Maya (25 July 1813) saw the French force Wellington’s men to abandon the pass of Maya and retreat toward Pamplona, and was the only occasion in which an army under Wellington’s command lost guns (battle of the Pyrenees).
The siege of Fort San Felipe de Balaguer (4-7 June 1813) was the one success during Murray’s disastrous attempt to capture Tarragona in the summer of 1813, and saw a small Anglo-Spanish force capture a fort that blocked the best road from Tortosa to Tarragona, making it harder for Marshal Suchet to intervene in the siege.
The siege of San Sebastian (28 June-31 August 1813) saw Wellington successfully capture the last French stronghold on the northern coast of Spain, although after a longer siege than had been originally expected.
The battle of Castalla (13 April 1813) was a defensive victory that saw General Murray’s largely Anglo-Sicilian army defeat an attack by Suchet’s Army of Valencia.
The siege of Tarragona (3-12 June 1813) was an unsuccessful British attempt to recapture the Spanish city and provide a distraction for Wellington’s campaign in the north of Spain.
The siege of Villena (12 April 1813) was a quick French victory that briefly appeared to have opened the road to Castalla and the main body of General Murray’s Army of Alicante.
The combat of Biar (12 April 1813) was a successful British rearguard action that delayed Suchet’s advance and reduced his chances of winning a major victory over Murray’s Army of Alicante.
The combat of Albeyda (15 March 1813) was a minor British success in eastern Spain, and was meant to be followed by an amphibious attack on Valencia which was cancelled before it began.
The combat of Yecla (11 April 1813) was a French success at the start of the Castalla campaign that saw Suchet’s Army of Valencia split the Allied army facing them on the Xucar, giving Suchet a chance of inflicting a serious defeat on Murray’s army of Alicante.
The combat of Roncal (12-13 May 1813) was a partly successful French attempt to defeat the successful guerrilla leader Francisco Espoz y Mina by attacking his magazines, depots and hospitals.
The combat of Lequeitio (30 May 1813) was a rare success for the French in the north of Spain during their attempts to capture or destroy the Spanish guerrilla bands.
The combats of Guernica (2 and 5 April 1813) saw a French column force the Spanish guerrillas to abandon their HQ in Biscay, but the majority of the Spanish troops were able to escape, reducing the value of the success.
The combat of Bilbao (10 April 1813) was an unsuccessful Spanish attempt to capture the city while it was weakly defended, but failed after one of the key forces failed to arrive in time to support the initial attack.
Louis Marie Joseph Maximilien Caffarelli (1756-99) was an engineer who became one of Napoleon’s closest friends during the Egyptian Campaign, but who died after his arm was amputated during the siege of Acre.
Marie-Francois Caffarelli (1766-1849) was a French general who rose to command the Army of the North in Spain during the Peninsular War, but without great success.
Maximilien Sebastien Foy (1775-1825) was one of Napoleon’s most able divisional commanders, and performed well during the Peninsular War before fighting in the Waterloo campaign.
Philibert Guillaume Duhesme (1768-1815) was a French general who fought on the Rhine, in Spain and at Waterloo, where he was killed while commanding the Young Guard.
Karl Philipp Furst zu Schwarzenberg (1771-1820) was an Austrian general and diplomat most famous for service as Allied supreme commander during the autumn campaign of 1813 and the invasion of France of 1814.
The siege of Castro-Urdiales (22 March-12 May 1813) saw the French recapture a port that had fallen to a joint Anglo-Spanish force in the summer of 1812, but only after suffering a series of setbacks largely caused by underestimating the difficulty of the task.
The combat of San Pelayo (24 March 1813) saw the Spanish under Mendizabal attempt to defeat the French forces preparing to besiege Castro-Urdiales, but ended as a costly draw.
The capture of Fuenterrabia (11 March 1813) was a daring exploit carried out by a force of Spanish guerrillas and saw them capture and destroy the castle at Fuenterrabia, within sight of France.
The combat of Lerin (30 March 1813) was a major victory for the Spanish troops of Mina, and gave Mina control of large parts of Navarre for almost a month.
The combat of Tiebas (9 February 1813) saw the Spanish guerrilla leader Mina defeat a French force that was attempting to lift the siege of Tafalla (to 12 February 1813), and was quickly followed by the fall of the town.
The combat of Poza de la Sal (10-11 February 1813) saw the Spanish guerrillas of Longa ambush the headquarters of Palombini’s division, which held out until reinforcements arrived and forced the Spanish to retreat.
The siege of Tafalla (to 11 February 1813) was a success for the Spanish guerrilla leader Mina, and saw him force the surrender of the French garrison, after defeating a relief effort.
The combat of Bejar (20 February 1813) was the only direct clash between Wellington’s army and the French during the winter of 1813 and saw an attempt to surprise the British 50th Regiment fail.
The combat of Alba de Tormes (10-11 November 1812) saw the British repel an attempt by Soult to capture the bridge over the Tormes at Alba de Tormes, and forced the French to cross the Tormes further from Wellington's position north of Salamanca.
The combat of San Munoz (17 November 1812) was a rearguard action towards the end of Wellington's retreat from Burgos back to Portugal.
The combat of Villa Muriel (25 October 1812) saw the French cross the Carrion River at Villa Muriel and Palencia, ending Wellington's attempt to hold the river and forcing him to resume the retreat from Burgos.
The combat of Puente Larga (30 October 1812) was a rearguard action during Hill's retreat from Madrid, and helped win time for the Allies to evacuate Madrid and escape across the mountains to the north-west without difficulty.
The combat of Venta del Pozo and Villadrigo (23 October 1812) was a rearguard action during the retreat that followed the failure of the siege of Burgos, and saw the French fail to take advantage of their superior numbers.
The second combat of Bilbao (27-29 August 1812) saw the French recapture the Basque capital only two weeks after it had been captured by a joint Anglo-Spanish force.
The siege of Burgos (19 September-22 October 1812) was the disastrous end to otherwise successful Salamanca campaign, and his failure outside Burgos forced Wellington to retreat back to the Portuguese border, ending the year almost where he had started it.
The siege of the Retiro (13-14 August 1812) was the only French attempt to defend Madrid in the aftermath of the battle of Salamanca, and saw the British storm the outer line of defences before the defenders surrendered.
The first combat of Bilbao (13-14 August 1812) saw a joint Anglo-Spanish force capture the Basque capital, but it was recaptured by the French only two weeks later.
The combat of Garcia Hernandez (23 July 1812) was a rearguard action that came in the aftermath of the battle of Salamanca, and saw one of the most impressive achievements of Wellington's cavalry.
The combat of Majalahonda (11 August 1812) was the only significant fighting during Wellington's advance on Madrid in the aftermath of the battle of Salamanca, and saw his leading cavalry force come under attack by a French force that had been sent out to discover if Wellington was indeed on his way.
The first battle of Castalla (21 July 1812) was a French victory over the Spanish Army of Murcia, largely caused by the over-complex Spanish plan.
The siege of Santander (22 July-3 August 1812) was a key Anglo-Spanish success on the north coast of Spain, and gave Wellington access to a key supply base during the campaign of 1813.
The battle of Salamanca (22 July 1812) was one of the most important of Wellington's victories during the Peninsular War, and forced the French to abandon Madrid and temporarily withdraw towards the French border.
The combat of Castrejon (18 July 1812) was a rearguard action that came after Marmont outmanoeuvred Wellington on the River Douro, early in the campaign that ended at Salamanca.
The combat of Castrillo (18 July 1812) was the second of two combats on the same day, and came after Marmont outmanoeuvred Wellington on the Douro and briefly threatened to cut off his rearguard.
The combat of Castro Urdiales (6-8 July 1812) was the second of a series of joint Anglo-Spanish successes that weakened the French hold on the coast of northern Spain.
The combat of Portugalete (11 July 1812) was an unsuccessful Anglo-Spanish attack on a fortified village at the mouth of the Bilbao River.
The siege of Astorga (2 July-18 August 1812) saw the Spanish attack the isolated French garrison of Astorga, in an attempt to support Wellington's advance to Salamanca.
The combat of Lequeitio (21-21 June 1812) was the first of a series of successes for a joint British and Spanish force operating in northern Spain.
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