World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Siege of Tarragona (1811)

Article Id: WHEBN0031236340
Reproduction Date:

Title: Siege of Tarragona (1811)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: List of French general officers (Peninsular War), Battle of Valls, Battle of Saguntum, Battle of Castalla, Napoleonic Wars
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Siege of Tarragona (1811)

Siege of Tarragona (1811)
Part of Peninsular War

A view of Tarragona
Date 5 May – 29 June 1811
Location Tarragona, Spain
Result French victory
Belligerents
French Empire Spain
Commanders and leaders
Louis Suchet Juan de Contreras
Strength
21,634 6,500 & reinforcements
Casualties and losses
4,300 15,000

In the Siege of Tarragona from 5 May to 29 June 1811, Louis Gabriel Suchet's French Army of Aragon laid siege to a Spanish garrison led by Lieutenant General Juan Senen de Contreras. A British naval squadron commanded by Admiral Edward Codrington harassed the French besiegers with cannon fire and transported large numbers of reinforcements into the city by sea. Nevertheless, Suchet's troops stormed into the defenses and killed or captured almost all the defenders. The action took place at the port of Tarragona on the east coast of Spain during the Peninsular War, part of the Napoleonic Wars.

Emperor Napoleon offered Suchet a marshal's baton if he could capture Tarragona, so the French general pursued his goal vigorously. He methodically overran the city's outer works as he drove his siege parallels forward. The French general easily fended off weak attempts to relieve the city by land. Near the end of the siege, the French troops captured the lower city in a surprise attack and the garrison's survivors retreated to the upper city. At the end, Suchet's men stormed into the upper city amid scenes of horrific slaughter, including the murder of civilians. The loss of this major base and so many Spanish troops crippled the Army of Catalonia. Napoleon duly awarded Suchet the coveted rank of marshal.

Results

One authority gave French losses as 4,300 killed and wounded out of an army of 21,634 men, including General of Division Jean-Baptiste Salme killed. Total Spanish losses numbered between 14,000 and 15,000. Of these, 8,000 were captured and the rest were killed, wounded, or died of disease. During the butchery attending the final assault, the French attackers massacred numerous civilians including 450 women and children.[1] A second authority asserted that total Spanish losses were 15,000, of whom 7,000 were killed outright. French losses were given as 1,000 killed and 3,000 wounded or sick.[2]

Footnotes

  1. ^ Smith, p 365
  2. ^ Gates, pp 300-301

References

  • Gates, David. The Spanish Ulcer: A History of the Peninsular War. London: Pimlico, 2002. ISBN 0-7126-9730-6
  • Ojala, Jeanne A. "Suchet: The Peninsular Marshal". Chandler, David (ed.). Napoleon's Marshals. New York: Macmillan, 1987. ISBN 0-02-905930-5
  • Smith, Digby. The Napoleonic Wars Data Book. London: Greenhill, 1998. ISBN 1-85367-276-9

See also

  • (German) Juan Senen Contreras
  • (French) Jean-Baptiste Salme

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.