The Charge of the Heavy Brigade, Balaklava, 1854
Watercolour and pen and ink, by Orlando Norie (1832-1901), 1854 (c).
The 4th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Dragoon Guards and the 2nd (Royal North British) Regiment of Dragoons are depicted charging the enemy during the Battle of Balaklava on 25 October 1854. That day, Russian forces mounted an attack on the British position there. A large body of 3,000 Russian cavalry threatened the road to the harbour of Balaklava itself.
The British Heavy Brigade, about 800 strong, consisted of ten squadrons of heavy cavalry, commanded by Major-General James Yorke Scarlett. Seeing the Russian horsemen halted, and thus vulnerable to attack, Scarlett immediately charged uphill with three of his squadrons, being successively reinforced by the remaining seven squadrons of his Brigade. Reeling from this series of attacks, the Russian cavalry retired in disorder a few minutes later.
NAM Accession Number
National Army Museum, Out of Copyright
National Army Museum, Study collection