The Battle of Waterloo #OnThisDay

On 18th of June 1815 the Battle of Waterloo took place.

This battle resulted in the defeat of Napoleon by a coalition of British and Prussian forces under the command of Wellington and Blücher. The consequences of Napoleon’s defeat were momentous across Western Europe and into Orkney where over 1000 Orcadian men had served, many in the British navy.

The Anglo-Allied army had 68,000 men and 156 guns. The men were a mix of inexperienced troops and veterans of the Peninsular War (1808-14). With such a mixed force there was no question of Wellington going on the offensive.

The French Army had their greatest military commander in Napoleon Bonaparte. The emperor was loved by his loyal troops, demonised by his enemies, feared and respected by all.

His army was composed of veterans who had rallied to his cause on his return from exile. Having detached 33,000 men to follow the Prussians after Ligny, Napoleon had 72,000 men and 246 guns at Waterloo.

Battle of Waterloo

The Battle of Waterloo ended a war that had lasted 23years. The shock waves of Napoleon’s defeat rang out across the whole of Western Europe and affected everything including trade and the return of veterans . The dreadful provision for the returning veterans to Britain consigned many of them to lives of poverty and with appalling injuries for some. Discontent at home and rising levels of poverty resulted in social unrest. Peterloo Massacre

painting of the Battle of Waterloo
Batalla de Waterloo – Jan Willem Pieneman La bataille de Waterloo (1824, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam) de Jan Willem Pieneman (1779-1853)

Categories: Uncategorized

Tagged as: , , ,

Leave a Reply