1750-1815 Battles: French vs British.
Era of Modern Bayonet

French vs British at Waterloo 1. Introduction - "The Invincibles"
2. French vs British: Battles, Combats, Actions, Skirmishes.
3. Addititional information from our visitors.
4. "I HATE France !"
5. Links.




The authors of memoirs rarely got it right,
often embellishing tales of their own bravery
and exaggerating enemy’s losses.

"The Invincibles" and chest-thumping

You probably wonder why did we add this introduction to the list of French-English battles in th era of modern-bayonet. The answer is quite simple, after the publication of the list we begun receiving e-mails from people who claimed that we chose this period only for one reason. This is to show the so-called "low point" of their favorite (French or British) army. These people were (and some still are) genuinely convinced that their army, French or British, was invincible. There’s been well-worn chest-thumping rants, military brouhaha, about the victories and invincibility of the French and British armies by our French and English visitors. For this reason we have decided to give examples of French and British military failures and defeats suffered during other periods. Basically, this short introduction is only for the worshippers of the French and British army. If you are not one of them, go directly to the list of battles and combats.

According to Julius Caesar, the nations and armies are like individuals, go through times of being more courageous or less so, according to circumstances. Every country, no matter how big and strong, had better and worse periods, periods of success and periods of failures and defeats etc. The Roman army - considered by many military experts as the best military machine - experienced just that. I would say they fell into so-called "victory disease" (according to wikipedia.org: "a habit whereby military commanders, armies, and even whole nations, having experienced a series of previous military victories, becomes susceptible to defeat. This change is often characterized by the emergence of arrogance, stereotypes of enemy, disregarding their actual military capacity etc.")
France and England were two of five the most successful militarily nations. But do not believe those who claim that their troops were invincible and never defeated. The history of the two countries are full of "ups and downs" on military field. The so called superiority of this or other nation lies in their authors self-aggrandizing patriotic jingoism. Many participants of the campaigns denied their own mistakes for reasons of personal and national pride. Wellington refused to write the history of the battle of Waterloo because if he had, he would have had nothing good to say about some of the participants who were celebrated as heroes. Wellington wrote to the Earl of Mulgrave: "If a true history is written, what will become of the reputation of half of those who have acquired reputation, and who deserve it for their gallantry, but who, if their mistakes and casual misconduct were made public, would not be so well thought of ?" Below just few examples of "ups and downs" of England and France on military field.

English military.
The English boasts of himself that he is so tough soldier that he does not know when he is beaten. Samuel Johnson wrote: "Our nation may boast, beyond any other people in the world, of a kind of epidemic bravery." :-)
Reading certain accounts of English mega-prowess at war, you wonder if the English casualties are not all caused by friendly fire. The authors have a knack of turning defeat into victory in the Dunkirk style. (Mind you, the catastrophe at Dunkirk was called by many as "It is victory!" and was celebrated in speeches, paintings and poems.)
You may even think they were never defeated. Actually the British troops were defeated not only by other Europeans (between 1750 and 1815 they lost more than 60 battles to the French alone) but also by about everyone they ever fought with; Albanians (78th Foot at Rosetta), Argentinians (in 1806-7 at Buenos Aires), Americans (at Cowpens and in 1815 at New Orleans), Poles (in 1810 at Fuengirola), native Indians (at Monongahela), Egyptians (1807 at El-Hamad or Hamaad) etc.
At Cowpens the Americans demolished some of the best British infantry. Babits writes: "When the British infantry reached a point '40 or 50 yards' or an even closer - '30 to 40 paces' - the militia commenced volley fire ... The fire was returned but not with vivacity or impression. ... They were by this time within 30 yards of us ... " The American commander said to his officers: "They (British) are coming like a mob. Give them a fire and I will charge them." The Americans delivered a volley and the damage was great. Some British soldiers 'threw down their arms and fell upon their faces.' The 'unexpected fire ... stopped the redcoats and threw them into confusion. Exertions to make them advance were useless [and] an unaccountable panic extended itself along the whole line." Howard ordered a charge with the bayonet, which order was obeyed with great alarcity.' T. Young saw the 'British broke, and throwing down their guns and cartridge boxes, made for the wagon road, and did the prettiest sort of running !" [Babits - "A devil of whipping - the battle of Cowpens"]
In October 1813 the British infantry was routed by the Americans in Battle of the Thames. Despite flanking fire, Johnson's Americans broke through. Immediately Procter's redcoats turned and fled the field, many of them surrendering. Tecumseh's Indians remained and kept up the fighting. The British had 489 killed, wounded, and prisoners. The Americans suffered only 3 casualties. The rest of the American casualties were inflicted by the Indians, who fought with determination. Procter was later court-martialed for cowardice and removed from command.
After the American War of Independence the British infantry became an effective force until the parade of failed invasions on the Continent. French General Suchet defeated two British amphibious expeditions from Sicily against Spain's east coast. General Souham succeeded in taking the fortress of Nijmegen defended by 30.000 English infantry supported by 1.200 Dutch troops. In 1808 British corps landed in Spain but when was threatened by Napoleon, they fled. General Moore was pushing his troops so hard that discipline almost collapsed, men deserted, and some cannons were abandoned. Moore's 200 mile run to Coruna was a very desperate one. The French knocked the stuffing out of him with the Brits being not just taken to the cleaners down to the coast by Napoleon's troops, but washed, pressed and sent home in a brown paper bag.
Moore's failure was followed by the "disaster of Walcheren". In 1814 at Berg-op-Zoom the British 55th and 69th Regiment of Foot advanced in the dark then suddenly broke and fled in a wild panick. Not a shot was fired at them, nor was a single Frenchman seen." (Nafziger - "Imperial Bayonets" 1996 p 164)
Defeats and/or failures suffered during other periods:
About 200 BC 'England' had been invaded by Belgic peoples. 'England' was subjugated by Romans for very long time (400 years). The Roman Governor of Britain, Suetonius Paulinus, met the tribesmen in a bloody battle of Boudica. Some 80,000 of the tribesmen were slaughtered, against only 400 Roman dead. After Romans 'England' was repeatedly invaded and conquered by the Vikings.
There were days when the Danes made the British tremble, and the English litany included the prayer, "From the fury of the Danes, Good Lord deliver Us." After Romans and Vikings came Normans from France (ext.link) The Norman French warriors defeated the English infantry at the Battle of Hastings (1066) and the Norman leader, William Conqueror and his descendants replaced the Anglo-Saxons as the ruling class of England. (Scotland was never conquered by "foreigners", it became part of United Kingdom and the Act of Union was signed by "bribed Scottish aristocrats" (according to nationalist Scottish history).
During WW2 the japanese soldiers said they couldn't regard the British soldiers as soldiers since they "didn't fight". The Battle of Singapore was a brilliant military success by the Japanese against superior numbers and equipment of British infantry (140.000 Brits vs 40.000 Japanese)
"On May 10th 1940, the British Guards land at Hook of Holland, to clear the road to the Hague of German airborne and paratroops. By the time they are ready to attack, the Dutch have cleared the road themselves. The Guards are then requested to help clear other areas in the vicinity of Hook, but they refuse, it not being their exact orders. A refinement of the request to have the Guards defend the fortress of Hook, so the garisson could help clear the area is also refused, the Guards just stay in the docks. When on the 12th a rumour arrives that German tanks have crossed the bridges at Rotterdam (which did not happen until after the armistice on the 14th), they flee in total disarray by sea, leaving all their equipment behind ! (Lt. Col. Brongers "De slag om de Afsluitdijk" and "De slag om de Residentie")
According to wikipedia.org in July 1944 during the Operation Goodwood the British and Canadian tanks and bombers destroyed 109 German tanks, for the loss of ... 413 tanks! In June 1944 at Villers Bocage German tank company single-handedly took on a column of the British 7th Armoured Division, and literally destroyed it, so forestalling General Montgomery's planned unhinging of the Wehrmacht's Caen defense. Only in this combat there were 138 destroyed British tanks and 250 destroyed armoured personal carriers, anti-tank guns and transporters. German commander's tank alone destroyed with easy 14 British tanks. Pretty good for a day's work, don't you think ?
Days after this fight just the sighting of a Tiger tank caused panic amongst British troops. During further battles German radio men sometimes picked up such messages like "Help, Help, Tiger Tank !" Montgomery banned any combat report describing the fights between German and British tanks. According to Montgomery these reports undermined the morale of his troops.

Surrender of the British at Yorktown 1781. Picture by Rocco.
[The French commander is in white uniform, the American in dark blue. Both are mounted.
According to legend, the British marched to the fife tune of "The World Turned Upside Down,"
though no real evidence of this exists. British Prime Minister Lord North resigned.]

British commander Carr Beresford surrenders
to the Argentinians, 1806-7

The British troops fled before the French at Corunna.
Picture by Naudet.

The British troops fled before the Germans at Dunkirk, 1940.
Photo, author unknown.

The British troops surrender to the Germans, 1944.
Photo, author unknown.

The British troops surrendering to the Japanese at Singapore, 1942.
[Many 'directives' to the British troops from commanders and the Prime Minister himself
made bold proclamations about 'not giving any ground' in Singapore.]

However, the list of Britain's victories is much longer than defeats. The British repelled the American Invasion of Canada and burned Washington to the ground. There are plenty of books, articles and websites devoted to the British military leaders (Duke of Marlborough, Nelson, Wellington, Cromwell etc.)

To our French visitors: please don't send us more pictures.

French military.
French flag 1804, from warflag.com According to wikipedia.org the French military history is perceived in the USA as being mired by humiliating defeats (such as in the Franco-Prussian War). Relations between France and the United States plunged following Paris's fierce opposition to the U.S.-led war in Iraq. The French military is often the butt of jokes from American comedians such as Jay Leno. "For some reason, France and chicken match together" (a commercial campaign by Subway in 2004 about a new chicken sandwich). Some restaurants pulled French wine off their menus.
England and France have a long history of conflict. There has also been an element of class conflict in these attitudes, as after Hastings and the colonization by William the Conqueror, the aristocracy that ruled England was French-speaking and of French origin, while the majority of England's population was Anglo-Saxon. The modern history of conflict between France and England stems from the rise of English effect into a position as a dominant mercantile and seafaring power. Hostility toward and strategic conflict with France's similar ambitions became a defining characteristic of relations between the two powers. According to wikipedia.org the dimensions of this conflict in Britain were as much cultural as strategic. In the aftermath of the French defeat in the World War II, assessments about French military abilities suffered a significant reverse in the USA and England.
Some authors want you to believe that Wellington's redcoats had exclusivity in defeating Napoleonic marshals. This is not correct, the Prussians and Russians won more battles against the French than the British. Below is a list of French defeats during the Napoleonic wars (and it was France's most glorious period):
Queetz - Russians defeated French (under Marshal Ney)
Sacile - Austrians defeated French (under Eugene)
Aspern-Essling - Austrians defeated French
Kliastitzy - Russians defeated French (Oudinot)
Svolna - Russians defeated French (Oudinot)
Vinkovo - Russians defeated French (Murat)
2nd Polotzk - Russians defeated French (Oudinot, Victor)
Viasma - Russians defeated French
2nd Krasnoi - Russians defeated French (Roguet and NAPOLEON)
Plechenitzi - Russians defeated French (Oudinot)
Möckern - Russians and Prussians defeated the French (Eugène)
Luckau - Russians and Prussians defeated French (Oudinot)
Gross-Beeren - Russians and Prussians defeated French (Oudinot)
First Pirna - Russians defeated French (St. Cyr)
Second Katzbach - Prussians defeated French (Macdonald)
Second Pirna - Russians defeated French (Vandamme)
Kulm - Russians, Prussians, Austrians defeated French (Vandamme)
Dennewitz - Prussians defeated French and allies (Ney)
Wartenberg - Prussians defeated French and allies (Bertrand)
Möckern - Allies defeated French (Marmont)
Leipzig - Russians, Prussians, Austrians defeated French (NAPOLEON)
La Rothière - Russians, Austrians, Prussians, Bavarians defeated French (NAPOLEON)
Bar-sur-Aube - Austrians, Russians, Bavarians defeated French (Oudinot)
Lâon - Prussians, Russians defeated French (NAPOLEON)
Fismes - Prussians defeated French (Marmont)
Arcis-Sur-Aube - Allies defeated French (NAPOLEON)
La Fère Champenoise - Russians defeated French (Marmont and Mortier)
Paris - Allies defeated French ( Marmont and Mortier)
The failures and defeats were not something limited only to the Napoleonic wars. World War 2 was a humilation for the French army. Even though millions of French troops were manning the defensive Maginot Line in early 1940, Hitler's brilliant blitzkrieg strategy caught the Allies by surprise. The Germans skirted the Maginot Line and slashed into France through Luxembourg and the Ardennes Forest. The Blitzkrieg moved with lightning speed as Hitler's tanks turned and raced headlong to the sea. They reached the English Channel on May 21 cutting off the French and British armies in the North. The Germans turned again, fighting their way north to secure the coastal ports and annihilate the trapped armies. Germany occupied France within just 6 weeks.

The French surrender after the battle of Poitier, 1356.

The French army fleeing from Russia, 1812. Battle of Berezina.
[Of the 600,000 men that Napoleon had organized for his invasion of Russia,
barely 100,000 remained. Napoleon wrote: "I have no army any more!
For many days I have been marching in the midst of a mob of disbanded,
disorganized men, who wander all over the countryside in search of food."
It was probably the greatest disaster of the French army ever.]

The French surrender to the Prussians at Sedan, 1872.
[By the end of the battle of Sedan, with no hope of breaking out,
Napoleon III called off the attacks. He surrendered himself
and the entire Army of Châlons to Moltke and the Prussian King.]

The French surrender to the Germans in 1940.
[The Germans smashed the French and British forces in 1940.
The remaining British troops fled to Dunkirk and France surrendered to the Germans.]

And as with the English, the French army have enjoyed far more victories than defeats. The French troops also marched into Madrid, Lisbon, Berlin, Amsterdam, Warsaw, Vienna, Rome, Vilno, and Moscow. You can easily find books, articles and websites devoted to the French victories at Austerlitz, Borodino, Friedland, Jena etc. For those interested in the Napoleonic French army I recommend John Elting - "Swords Around a Throne" (excellent read)
So, were the French and British armies great ? Yes.
Were they invincible ? Definitely not.


Battles: French vs British
Era of 'modern' bayonet (socket-bayonet)
and musket.

The term "bayonet" is thought to have derived from the French town of Bayonne, and referred to a long knife or dagger (ext.link) which was carried by soldiers. In late 1690s more emphasis began to be placed on the use of the musket as a primary weapon of the common soldier and as a result, the long pike was gradually phased out and so called plug-bayonet was introduced. It was a spear-like blade to which was attached a long conical steel plug inserted directly into the muzzle of the soldier`s musket, a collar lodging against the barrel to prevent it sliding too far in. The disadvantage of this bayonet was that once fixed, the gun cannot be fired until the bayonet was removed.
The new , socket-bayonet first appeared in the French army in the 1670s but it was not until 1715 (in British army circa 1725) when the familiar triangular section bayonets were introduced as the new standard pattern. The bayonet had the blade attached to a hollow sleeve which slipped over the muzzle of the musket. The blade was below the axis of the barrel and left clearance to permit the musket to be loaded and fired while the bayonet was fixed.
"The introduction of the bayonet eventually reshaped infantry tactics, perhaps even more than did the conversion to the fusil. Never before or since has an edged weapon had such impact on firepower. By replacing formations that mixed musketeers and pikemen with formations composed entirely of infantrymen bearing fusils tipped with bayonets, the French increased the number of men equipped to fire on the enemy without losing the shock potential of a charge with cold steel. ... Belhomme claims that the first French army to employ such a bayonet was the Army of Flanders in 1642. ... the Dutch Wars witnessed the first French bayonet charges. ... Before 1670, Vauban already dreamed of a bayonet 'which could be so well accomodated to the end of the fusil that the bayonet would transform the fusil into a halberd while allowing the weapon to be loaded and fired as if the bayonet was not even there." (Lynn - "Giant of the Grand Siecle" p 464)

The triangular socket bayonets were used in the following wars between France and Great Britain:
- 1741-1748 : War of the Austrian Succession
- 1756-1763 : Seven Years War (incl. the French and Indian War)
- 1792-1802 : Revolutionary Wars (incl. French invasion of Ireland)
- 1802-1815 : Napoleonic Wars
The bayonets were also used in many other wars but not between the French and British.

June 1743 Dettingen - German-British
May 1745 Fontenoy French victory -
Oct 1746 Roucoux French victory -
July 1747 Lauffeldt French victory -
Nov 1747 Berge-op-Zoom French victory -
1748 Maastricht French victory -
July 1754 Fort Necessity French-Indian
July 1755 Monongahela River French-Indian
Aug 1756 Oswego French victory -
July 1757 Hastenbeck French victory -
Hannoverian-German-British army
led by the Duke of Cumberland, son of King George II of Great Britain.
Aug 1757 Fort William Henry French victory -
Jun 1758 Louisbourg - British victory
Jul 1758 Ticonderoga French victory -
April 1759 Bergen French-Saxon
June 1759 Fort Niagara - British-Indian
Aug 1759 Minden - German-British
Sep 1759 Quebec - British victory
Sep 1760 Montreal - British victory
Oct 1781 Yorktown American-French
May-Aug 1793 Siege of Valenciennes - Austrian-Hannov.
-British victory
Aug-Dec 1793 Toulon French victory -
6-8 Sep 1793 Hondeschoote French victory -
17-18 May 1794 Tourcoing French victory -
22 Aug 1798 Killala Bay French victory -
27 Aug 1798 Castlebar French victory -
5 Sep 1798 Callooney French victory -
8 Sep 1798 Ballinamuck French victory ? -
12 Oct 1798 Donnegal - British
19 Sep 1799 Bergen Op Zoom French victory -
2 Oct 1799 Bergen op Zoom - Russian-British
6 Oct 1799 Casstricum French victory -
20 March 1801 Canopus - British
6 July 1806 Maida - British
15 Aug 1808 Rolica - British-Portug.
21 Aug 1808 Vimeiro - British-Portug.
21 Dec 1808 Sahagun - British
29 Dec 1808 Benevente - British
16 Jan 1809 Coruna French victory -
12 May 1809 Oporto - British
27 June 1809 Casa de Salinas French victory -
16 July 1809 Flushing - British
28-29 July 1809 Talavera - British-Spanish
July-Dec 1809 Walcheren French victory -
16-24 May 1810 Siege of Mequinenza French victory -
10 July 1810 Barquilla French victory -
24 July 1810 Coa River French victory
Ney defeated Craufurd.
11 Aug 1810 Villagarcia French victory -
27 Sep 1810 Bussaco The Brit-Portug. repelled the assaults of French troops but were nevertheless forced to withdraw. According to Jac Weller Busaco was "a technical defeat [for the British] although claimed as victory" -
13 Oct 1810 Fuengirola Polish-French
5 March 1811 Barossa - British
11-15 March 1811 Series of skirmishes at:
Pombal, Redinha, Casal Novo, Foz do Arouce
- British-Allies
25 March 1811 Campo Mayor - British
29 March 1811 Guarda - British
3 April 1811 Sabugal - British-Portug.
April 1811 2nd Siege of Olivenza - British
April-May 1811 Blockade of Almeida French victory -
April-May 1811 2nd Siege of Badajoz French victory -
5 May 1811 Fuentes de Onoro French
The French claimed victory, because they won the passage at Poco Velho, cleared the wood, turned the British right flank, obliged the cavalry to retire, and forced Wellington to relinquish 3 miles of ground. "Fuentes d'Onoro: Massena battered the daylights out of Wellington and his army, turned the Anglo-Portuguese right and drove them back in some confusion, and then successfully sprang the garrison at Almeida - doubtless the object of the battle = Imperial victory." (- H.Muir napoleon-series.org forum)
The British also claimed victory because the village of Fuentes was in their hands. The French, without being in any manner molested, retired.
16 May 1811 Albuera British commander Beresford was certain he was defeated. Wellington's reaction to Beresford's account was: "Write me down a victory". In strategic terms it was a defeat for the British, since it forced Wellington to give up the rest of the 1811 campaign. draw ?
British casualties 6,000 killed, wounded and prisoners
French casualties were 5.936 (British authors "upgraded" the French losses to 7,000, 8,000 and even 10,000)
25 May 1811 Usagre - British
May-June 1811 3rd Siege of Badajoz French victory -
June 1811 Operations around
French victory -
22 June 1811 Elvas French victory -
25 Sep 1811 Carpio de Azaba - British
25 Sep 1811 El Bodon French victory. Wellington was caught too dispersed by Marmont and was driven back several km in disorder. -
27 Sep 1811 Aldea da Ponte - -
28 Oct 1811 Arroyo dos Molinos - British-Portug.
29 Dec 1811 Membrillo French victory -
Dec 1811 - Jan 1812 Siege of Tarifa - British-Portug.
Jan 1812 Siege of Ciudad Rodrigo - British-Portug.
March-April 1812 4th Siege of Badajoz - British-Portug.
11 April 1812 Villagarcia French victory -
18 May 1812 Almaraz - British
11 June 1812 Maguilla French victory -
June 1812 Siege of Salamanca
- British
21 June 1812 Lequeito - British
July 1812 Siege of Castro - British
18 July 1812 Castrejon French victory -
18 July 1812 Castrillo - British
22 July 1812 Salamanca - British-Portug.
July-Aug 1812 Siege of Santander - British
23 July 1812 Garcia Hernandez - British
11 Aug 1812 Malajahonda French victory -
Sep-Oct 1812 Siege of Burgos French victory. It forced the British to withdraw all the way back to Portugal and give up Madrid. -
23 Oct 1812 Venta del Pozo French victory -
25 Oct 1812 Villa Muriel French victory -
28 (23 ?) Oct 1812 Villadrigo - British
28 Oct 1812 Tordesillas French victory -
30 Oct 1812 Puente Larga - British
10-11 Nov 1812 Alba de Tormes - British
17 Nov 1812 San Munoz French victory -
20 Feb 1813 Bejar - British
12-13 April 1813 skirmishes at:
Biar and Castalla
- British-Allies
2 June 1813 Morales - British
June 1813 Siege of Tarragona French victory -
18 June 1813 skirmishes at:
Osma and San Milan
- British-Allies
21 June 1813 Vittoria - British-Portug.
24 June 1813 Villafranca French victory -
26 June 1813 Tolosa - British
25 July 1813 Roncesvalles French victory -
25 July 1813 Maya French victory -
July-Aug 1813 Siege of San Sebastian French-Allies
26-28 July 1813 Sorauren French-Allies
30 July-1 Aug 1813 Sorauren - British
July-Aug 1813 Blockade of Tarragona French victory -
31 July - 1 Aug 1813 series of skirmishes at :
Venta de Urroz, Sumbilla and Yanzi
- British-Spanish
2 Aug 1813 Lizaso French victory -
31 Aug 1813 San Marcial - Spanish-British
Aug-Sep 1813 Siege of San Sebastian - British
13-14 Sep 1813 skirmishes at:
Ordal and Villafranca
French victory -
7 Oct 1813 Bidassoa - British, Germans
7 Oct 1813 Vera French victory -
10 Nov 1813 Nivelle - British
9-13 Dec 1813 series of skirmishes at:
Villefranque, Nive, Anglet, Arcangues
Barrouillet and St. Pierre
- British-Allies
16 Jan 1814 Molins de Rey French victory -
Feb-April 1814 Siege of Bayonne French victory -
15-25 Feb 1814 series of skirmishes at:
Garris, Arriverayte and S. Etienne
- British-Allies
27 Feb 1814 Orthez - British
8 March 1814 Bergen op Zoom French victory -
17 March 1814 Daunia's Raid French victory -
19 March 1814 Vic-Bigorre French victory -
20-24 March 1814 skirmishes at:
Tarbes and Etauliers
- British-Allies
8 April 1814 Croix de Orade - British
10 April 1814 Toulouse draw
The French call it their victory. They lost only 3.200
The British call it their victrory. The British-Spanish casualties 4.500
14 April 1814 Bayonne French victory -
16 June 1815 Quatre Bras draw ? victory ?
The French stayed on the battlefield. They lost only 4.000
draw ? defeat ?
Wellington retreated after battle and failed in joining Blucher. Casualties 4.800, heavier than French.
17 June 1815 Genappe French victory -
18 June 1815 Waterloo - German-British
-Netherland victory
French British and Allies *
Total victories 63 60 *

* - the majority of 'French battles' was won by the French alone (but not all, the French also used foreigners, Indians, etc.), while the vast majority of 'British battles' was won by a mix of German, British and other troops. Often the British troops consisted only few percentages or half of the victorious army and it's very difficult to call their victories as only 'British'. For example at Waterloo the British infantry battalions consisted of 30 % of all battalions. In contrast the Germans made up 50 %, and the Dutch and Belgian 20 %. So it was rather an international or German victory over the French, and not British.


Additional Information From Our Visitors.

From M. Townsend (UK), he wrote us an interesting info: "One point which may or may not be of interest, the last British battle where bayonets were used, was during the 1982 Falkland's war. The Scot's Guards were given the order to fix bayonets before charging Argentine positions on Mount Tumbledown."

From J. Tremblay (France): "Greetings... Soult won battle against Wellington at Toulouse.
First the question of losses. The French had lost near 4000 men while the Brits lost at least 8000.
Secondly: the French position has never been taken nor pierced by the enemies. Moreover the Brits were exausted and gave up that position.
Thirdly: this represents a strategic victory for the French but Soult obeyed senat's acts and from the provisional governor and thus the war ended in the "Midi de la France."
Nicoles Gotteri (France): "Toulouse correspond à un incontestable succès stratégique."
Jean Tulard (France): "Qualifiée de défaite française, cette bataille mérite plutôt le nom de victoire française, dans la mesure où le plan de Soult a réussi et celui de Wellington a échoué, sans parler des pertes ennemies deux fois plus lourdes."

3. From J. Baptista (Brasil) "Hi Guys, Recently I read a British account of Fuentes d'Onoro. This is what Ensign John Mills wrote: 'At Fuentes the French completely turned our right; Lord Wellington in his dispatch slightly notices it and would lead you to think the troops on the right were withdrawn rather than, as was the case, driven in; and they give him what he had never dreamed of claiming, a victory.'
So the Frogs won at d'Onoro ?"

"I HATE France !"

Excerpts from the website "I hate France."

"The new big thing on the web is all these sites with names like "I Hate France," with supposed datelines of French military history, supposedly proving how the French are total cowards. ... Well, I'm going to tell you guys something you probably don't want to hear: these sites are total bullshit, the notion that the French are cowards is total bullshit, and anybody who knows anything about European military history knows damn well that over the past thousand years, the French have the most glorious military history in Europe, maybe the world. ...

I hate [President] Chirac too, and his disco foreign minister with the blow-dry 'do and the snotty smile. But there are two things I hate more than I hate the French: ignorant fake war buffs and people who are ungrateful.
And when an American mouths off about French military history, he's not just being ignorant, he's being ungrateful. ... When I say ungrateful, I'm talking about the American Revolution. ... try going back to when you read Johnny Tremaine in 4th grade and you might recall a little place called Yorktown, Virginia, where we bottled up Cornwallis's army, forced the Brits' surrender and pretty much won the war. Well, news flash: "we" didn't win that battle, any more than the Northern Alliance conquered the Taliban. The French army and navy won Yorktown for us. Americans didn't have the materiel or the training to mount a combined operation like that, with naval blockade and land siege. It was the French artillery forces and military engineers who ran the siege, and at sea it was a French admiral, de Grasse, who kicked the shit out of the British navy when they tried to break the siege.

Long before that, in fact as soon as we showed the Brits at Saratoga that we could win once in a while, they [the French] started pouring in huge shipments of everything from cannon to uniforms. We'd never have got near Yorktown if it wasn't for massive French aid.

So how come you bastards don't mention Yorktown in your cheap webpages?
I'll tell you why: because you're too ignorant to know about it and too dishonest to mention it if you did.

The thing that gets to me is why Americans hate the French so much when they only did us good and never did us any harm. Like, why not hate the Brits? They're the ones who killed thousands of Americans in the Revolution, and 30 years later they came back and attacked us again. That time around they managed to burn Washington DC to the ground while they were at it.
How come you web jerks never mention that?

Sure, the easy answer is because the Brits are with us now, and the French aren't.

... Now let's talk about ignorant. And that's what you are if you think the French can't fight: just plain ignorant. Appreciation of the French martial spirit is just about the most basic way you can distinguish real war nerds from fake little teachers' pets.
Let's take the toughest case first: the German invasion, 1940, when the French Army supposedly disgraced itself against the Wehrmacht. This is the only real evidence you'll find to call the French cowards, and the more you know about it, the less it proves. Yeah, the French were scared of Hitler. Who wasn't?
Chamberlain, the British prime minister, all but licked the Fuhrer's goosesteppers, basically let him have all of Central Europe, because Britain was terrified of war with Germany.

Hell, Stalin signed a sweetheart deal with Hitler out of sheer terror, and Stalin wasn't a man who scared easy. The French were scared, all right. But they had reason to be. For starters, they'd barely begun to recover from their last little scrap with the Germans: a little squabble you might've heard of, called WW I. WW I was the worst war in history to be a soldier in. WW II was worse if you were a civilian, but the trenches of WW I were five years of Hell like General Sherman never dreamed of.
At the end of it a big chunk of northern France looked like the surface of the moon, only bloodier, nothing but craters and rats and entrails. Verdun. Just that name was enough to make Frenchmen and Germans, the few who survived it, wake up yelling for years afterward. The French lost 1.5 million men out of a total population of 40 million fighting the Germans from 1914-1918. A lot of those guys died charging German machine-gun nests with bayonets.

I'd really like to see one of you office smartasses joke about "surrender monkeys" with a French soldier, 1914 vintage. You'd piss your dockers.

Shit, we strut around like we're so tough and we can't even handle a few uppity Iraqi villages. These guys faced the Germans head on for 5 years, and we call them cowards? And at the end, it was the Germans, not the French, who said "calf rope." When the sequel war came, the French relied on their frontier fortifications and used their tanks (which were better than the Germans', one on one) defensively. The Germans had a newer, better offensive strategy. So they won. And the French surrendered. Which was damn sensible of them. This was the WEHRMACHT. In 2 years, they conquered all of Western Europe and lost only 30,000 troops in the process. That's less than the casualties of Gettysburg. You get the picture?

Nobody, no army on earth, could've held off the Germans under the conditions that the French faced them. The French lost because they had a long land border with Germany. The English survived because they had the English Channel between them and the Wehrmacht. When the English Army faced the Wermacht at Dunkirk, well, thanks to spin the tuck-tail-and-flee result got turned into some heroic tale of a brilliant British retreat.

... Here's a quick sampler of some of my favorite French victories, like an antidote to those ignorant websites. We'll start way back and move up to the 20th century. Tours, 732 AD: The Muslims had already taken Spain and were well on their way to taking the rest of Europe. The only power with a chance of stopping them was the French army under Charles "the Hammer" Martel, King of the Franks (French), who answered to the really cool nickname "the Hammer of God." It was the French who saved the continent's ass.
All the smart money was on the Muslims: there were 60,000 of them, crazy Jihadis whose cavalry was faster and deadlier than any in Europe. The French army was heavily outnumbered and had no cavalry. Fighting in phalanxes, they held against dozens of cavalry charges and after at least two days of hand-to-hand combat, finally managed to hack their way to the Muslim center and kill their commander. The Muslims retreated to Spain, and Europe developed as an independent civilization.
You exile guys might want to remember that the French under Napoleon are still the only army ever to have taken all of continental Europe, from Moscow to Madrid.

I could keep listing French victories till I had a book. In fact, it's not a bad idea. A nice big hardback, so you could take it to the assholes running all the anti-French-military sites and bash their heads in with it."

Recommended Reading.

Bayonet History
French and British Struggle for Domination
History of France.
French History Timeline. (Graphic Intensive)
Military History of France
History of England
History of Britain

Prussian Army ~ The Austrian Army. ~ Russian Army

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Napoleon, His Army and Enemies