ining force sent out by Graham had been, as he expected, driven in with loss, though not an appalling loss of 50 per cent., such as Browne鈥檚 gallant flankers had suffered on the Cerro. But the main body was now up, and had formed in the edge of 鏉窞淇濆仴 the wood, to the left of Duncan鈥檚 guns, with no loss or interruption, since it had been well covered all the time. There were now some 1,400 men in line: the 28th, 450 strong, on the left, then the 211 bayonets of the Coldstreamers, the 87th, nearly 700 strong, in the centre; beyond them the right wing of the 67th, about 250 bayonets, next to the guns, which were still under the protection of the flank companies of the 47th which served as their escort throughout the fight. The broken screen of light troops which had just retired was by no means out of action; the 95th formed 鏉窞缇庡闄㈡帓琛屾 up again behind the 28th, the Portuguese behind the 87th, and both were used again before the battle was over.
The formation of the French at this moment was an uneven line of four battalion columns,鈥攃ounting from their left, 1/8th, 2/8th, 2/54th, 1/54th;鏉窞澶滅敓娲籬zysh the other two battalions were in reserve, the 1/45th behind the French battery, which was now engaged with Duncan鈥檚 guns, the provisional battalion of grenadiers more to the right, and some distance behind the 54th regiment. The whole was advancing, but slowly: the battalions in the front line were firing; the centre was a little more to the front than the wings, the 2/8th being ahead of the other battalions because (as its chef de bataillon remarks in his memoir) he only allowed his men to fire volleys by order, while the units on his right and left were using independent 鐖辨澀宸為緳鍑よ鍧?fire. All had suffered in the previous fight with Barnard and the Portuguese, and much needed time to re-form, which was not granted them, because the English main line charged the moment that the light troops had cleared off from its front. It is curious to 鏉窞妗戞嬁鎸夋懇浣撻獙 note in the French memoirs that the authors all write as if they had an
oppressive feeling that the superiority of numbers was against them, and that they were being led to a forlorn hope. This was caused partly by the[p. 120] immense extent of the British line in proportion to its depth, still more by the happy existence of 鏉窞娌瑰帇璁哄潧 the wood behind Wheatley鈥檚 brigade. It had already vomited out two lively attacking lines, and the enemy presupposed a third in reserve; nearly all the French narratives definitely say that they were attacked by three lines, while really there was only 鏉窞鎸夋懇鏈嶅姟one, with the screen of light troops, which had already been used up. As to the complaint concerning inferior numbers, it is certain that Leval鈥檚 division had 3,800 men, and Wheatley鈥檚 brigade only 2,500. The only superiority of the British was that, in the 鏉窞鑳藉惞鐨勮冻娴村簵 artillery duel now going on to the right of the line, they had ten guns to six, and soon crushed the French battery, so that it gave no effective support to its infantry. Only one of the French battalions attempted to deploy into line鈥攖his was the 2nd of the 54th, which lay opposite the British 28th鈥攖he others kept on from 鏉窞涓嬪煄鍖烘壘鏈嶅姟 first to la