Peninsular war

Apr 25, Mark rated it really liked it Napoleon Bonaparte's decision in to occupy Spain typically is ranked second only to his invasion to Russia in terms of the disastrous mistakes made by the French emperor. What began as a swift military operation soon degenerated into an "ulcer" that tied down thousands of troops, slowly bleeding France's strength. For this reason, the Peninsular War has never wanted for attention, especially among British historians who have long chronicled the campaigns waged by Arthur Wellesley in his asc Napoleon Bonaparte's decision in to occupy Spain typically is ranked second only to his invasion to Russia in terms of the disastrous mistakes made by the French emperor.

Peninsular war

Wars involving France

Europe in By the year France had achieved domination over the great majority of continental Europe. Britain alone had withstood the power of France, achieving security against invasion through Nelson's victory over the combined French and Spanish fleets at Trafalgar The tide began to turn in when Napoleon created a new enemy by usurping the Spanish throne in favour of his brother Joseph.

The Spanish uprising that followed encouraged Britain to send an expeditionary force to the Iberian Peninsula. The ensuing war was to play a major part in Napoleon's downfall.

Consolidation, The road to war began in the autumn of when Napoleon moved French troops through Spain to invade Portugal. After feeding more thantroops into Spain under the pretext of supporting the invasion, Napoleon deposed the existing Spanish monarch in April in order to place his own brother Joseph on the throne.

Although the ensuing Spanish uprising can hardly have come as Peninsular war surprise to Napoleon, he failed to see that the revolt could never be completely suppressed.

Britain now had a new ally in Spain and in August landed an expeditionary force under the command of Lt. Sir Arthur Wellesley at the mouth of the Mondego river in Portugal. The Battle of Vimeiro was the first occasion on which Napoleonic offensive tactics combining skirmishers, columns and supporting artillery fire failed against the British infantry line and Wellesley's defensive skills.

Peninsular war

Junot was defeated, though an opportunity to inflict further damage on the French was lost as the out-ranked Wellesley was replaced first by Burrard and then by Dalrymple. Wellesley's victory was still sufficient to persuade the French to evacuate Portugal as part of a controversial agreement which became known as the Convention of Sintra.

Moore struck towards Burgos and the northern flank of Napoleon's army, succeeding in drawing French forces away from southern Spain before being forced to retreat westwards. Napoleon meanwhile had transferred command of the pursuit to Soult and returned to Paris, never again to lead an army in the Peninsula.

In April Wellesley, freed from criticism over the Convention of Sintra, returned to Portugal and assumed command of all British-Portuguese forces.

Peninsular War | European history |

Immediately, he implemented three innovations in army organization: After defeating Soult at Porto on 12th May, Wellesley crossed the border into Spain, joined forces with the Spanish general Cuesta, and marched eastwards.

On 27thth July, French armies under Joseph attacked the allies north of Talavera.

Peninsular war

The British-Portuguese lines held throughout the Battle of Talaverafinally compelling Joseph to abandon the battlefield. The victory had, however, been costly and, with Soult threatening to cut the road to Portugal, Wellesley was forced to fall back.

A further bloody battle took place at Albuera on 16th May as Soult's move north was intercepted by a combined British-Portuguese-Spanish force under Beresford.

Although Beresford's handling of the battle - in which the French made the largest single infantry attack of the War - attracted much criticism, Soult was finally forced to retreat. French armies continued to threaten Wellington throughout the latter months ofbut at no time were able to catch him at a disadvantage.

The turning point of the war had been reached. Attack, On 8th January Wellington began to advance through Spain. Ciudad Rodrigo fell on 19th January followed, after a costly assault, by Badajoz on 6th April. Wellington's ability to push on eastwards in the face of an enemy that was numerically far superior was made possible by Spanish regular and guerrilla forces pinning down French armies elsewhere in Spain.

On 17th June, Wellington entered Salamanca with only Marmont's army in the vicinity. The two armies shadowed each other over the next few weeks until Marmont attempted to out-flank Wellington on 22nd July. Wellington seized the opportunity to attack and in the ensuing Battle of Salamanca won a crushing victory.A brief history of the Peninsular War with more information on the battles of Albuera, Bailén, Roliça, Vimeiro, La Coruña, Porto, Talavera, Almeida, Buçaco, Barrosa, Fuentes de Oñoro, Ciudad Rodrigo, Salamanca, Vitoria, Maya and San Sebastián.

Peninsular War: Peninsular War, (–14), that part of the Napoleonic Wars fought in the Iberian Peninsula, where the French were opposed by British, Spanish, and Portuguese forces.

Timeline of the Peninsular War - Wikipedia

Napoleon’s peninsula struggle contributed considerably to his eventual downfall; but . Peninsular War Battles places you at the forefront of Napoleon’s campaign to conquer Portugal and Spain.

Play is possible as the British, French or Spanish across 5 campaigns with a total of 40 missions.5/10(11). The Peninsular War was a military conflict for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars, waged between France and the allied powers of Spain, the United Kingdom and started when French and Spanish armies, then allied, occupied Portugal in , and escalated in when France turned on Spain, its former ally.

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Peninsular War - Wikipedia