Battle of Barrosa 1811
Battle of Barrosa March 5th 1811. London Published June 1st 1815 by J. Jenkins, 48 Strand. From The Martial achievements of Great Britain and Her Allies from 1799 to 1815 by James Jenkins. An original aquatint print from "The Martial achievements of Great Britain and Her Allies from 1799 to 1815. London: Printed for James Jenkins, No 48, Strand, By L. Harrison & J. C. Leigh, 373 Strand.
Original aquatint engraving on medium weight wove paper with fine hand colour. Drawing by William Heath (delt) with aquatint engraving by Dubourg (sculpt).
Good overall condition with exceptional original colour and wide margins. The plate has the date of publication and the name of the publisher beneath the engraved title. The approx engraved area of the plate is 8.5" x 7.75" (215mm x 195mm) including the engraved title text. Engraved plate mark area is approx 8.5 x 11.75 (215mm x 300mm). The large sheet size is approx 11.5" x 14" (290mm x 355mm).
The Battle of Barrosa also known as the Battle of Chiclana or Battle of Cerro del Puerco was part of an unsuccessful manoeuvre by an Anglo-Iberian force to break the French siege of Cádiz during the Peninsular War. This was British officer, Lieutenant General Thomas Graham’s notable victory over the French during the march to Cadiz in the Peninsular War.
Excerpt from the written account as published:
THE BATTLE OF BARROSA.
THE annexed illustration shews the pinewood from which the enemy commenced a most determined and destructive fire on our troops. The centre of the print, or middle-ground, is occupied by the artillery of the enemy in full retreat; and the fore-ground represents the charges of the three companies of Guards and the 87th regiment on the enemy's troops commanded by General Laval.
The following is an Extract from Lieutenant-General Graham's Letter to the Earl of Liverpool, dated Isla de Leon, 6th and 10th March, 1811.
My division being halted on the eastern slope of the Barrosa height, was marched, about twelve o'clock, through the wood towards the Bermesa, cavalry patrols having previously been sent towards Chiclana without meeting with the enemy. On the march I received notice, that the enemy had appeared in force on the plain, and was advancing towards the height of Barrosa. As I considered that position as the key of that of Santa Petri, I immediately countermarched, in order to support the troops left for its defence; and the alacrity with which this manoeuvre was executed, served as a favourable omen. It was, however, impossible, on such intricate and difficult ground, to preserve order in the columns, and there never was time to restore it entirely. But before we could get ourselves quite disentangled from the wood, the troops on the Barrosa bill węre seen returning from it, while the enemy's left wing was rapidly ascending. At the same time his right wing stood on the plain, on the edge of the wood, within cannon-shot. A retreat in the face of such an enemy, already within reach of the easy communication by the sea-beach, must have involved the whole army in all the danger of being attacked during the unavoidable confusion of the different corps arriving on the narrow ridge of Bermesa nearly at the same time . . . .
A genuine antique print over 200 years old.