Clash of Steel
for Military History & Aviation enthusiasts

Translate this Page

Search :


Battle Name : Nivelle

Date(s) : 10 November 1813

Part of : The French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars , The Peninsular Campaign ,

Outcome : A victory for British Peninsular Army over French Army of Spain [Soult]

Type of battle : Land


After Wellington had crossed the Bidassoa Soult withdrew to a new defensive line along the western bank of the river Nivelle. This time he placed his main force in the coastal sector and was only able to defend the rest of his 19 mile front sparsely. Wellington used Hope's corps to pin the coastal sector while rolling up the line from inland with divisions either side of the river. The action is particularly notable for the attack by the Light Division and two Spanish Division on the strong points, 'the hinge', of Soults line. Many other strong points were taken with little effort. In Soult's view it should have cost Wellington 25,000 men whereas it cost only a tenth of that figure. Soult fell back to a new line on the river Nive.


Banks of the Nivelle river, south-western France. From the coast for a distance of about 19 miles inland. The advance was from five to ten miles in depth. (France)

Casualty figures

French Army of Spain [Soult]

Number engaged :

Casualties :
5,121 (9.04%)

British Peninsular Army

Number engaged :

Casualties :
2,383 (2.71%)