Battle of Paardeberg

Battle Of Paardeberg

Military Conflict
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Battle of Paardeberg

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The Battle of Paardeberg or Perdeberg ("Horse Mountain") was a major battle during the Second Anglo-Boer War. It was fought near Paardeberg Drift on the banks of the Modder River in the Orange Free State near Kimberley.

Lord Methuen advanced up the railway line in November 1899 with the objective of relieving the besieged city of Kimberley (and the town of Mafeking, also under siege). Battles were fought on this front at Graspan, Colenso, Modder River before the advance was halted for two months after the British defeat at the Battle of Magersfontein. In February 1900, Field Marshal Lord Roberts assumed personal command of a significantly reinforced British offensive.

The army of Boer General Piet Cronjé was retreating from its entrenched position at Magersfontein towards Bloemfontein after its lines of communication were cut by Major General John French, whose cavalry had recently outflanked the Boer position to relieve Kimberley. Cronje's slow-moving column was intercepted by French at Paardeberg, where the Boer general eventually surrendered after a prolonged siege, having fought off an attempted direct assault by Lieutenant General Horatio Kitchener.

Situation in February, 1900

An earlier British attempt to relieve Kimberley, led by Lieutenant General Lord Methuen, had been opposed by Boers under Cronjé and Koos de la Rey. Although the Boers had failed to prevent the British crossing the Modder River on 28 November, they had fought them to a standstill at...
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