14 April, 1814
knowing of the abdication of Napoleon
Bonaparte, the besieged governor of Bayonne, General
Pierre Thouvenot, decided he would break out from the British
a pitch-black night, the general led 5000 men in a surprise
attack against the British lines and threw the redcoat army
into utter confusion.
reinforcements contained the threat and then forced Thouvenot's
futile attempt cost the French just over 900 casualties
and the British some 840. A major loss for the besieging
army was when General Lord Andrew Hay was mortally wounded.
was eventually surrendered on 27 April.