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Battle of Abukir
Part of the French Campaign in Egypt and Syria of the French Revolutionary Wars
The landing of British troops at Aboukir, 8 March 1801.jpg
The landing of British troops at Aboukir, 8 March 1801 by Philip James de Loutherbourg
Date8 March 1801
LocationAbu Qir, Egypt, Ottoman Empire
Result British victory
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg United Kingdom France France
Commanders and leaders
Ralph Abercromby Louis Friant
ca. 8,000 men 1,800 men and 15 guns
Casualties and losses
31 officers, 621 men killed, wounded, and missing 350 killed, wounded and missing, 8 guns lost

The Battle of Abukir of 8 March 1801 was the second pitched battle of the French campaign in Egypt and Syria to be fought at Abu Qir on the Mediterranean coast, near the Nile Delta.


The landing of the British expeditionary force under Sir Ralph Abercromby was intended to defeat or drive out an estimated 21,000 remaining troops of Napoleon's ill-fated invasion of Egypt. The fleet commanded by Baron Keith included seven ships of the line, five frigates and a dozen armed corvettes. With the troop transports, it was delayed in the bay for several days by strong gales and heavy seas before disembarkation could proceed.[1]

Under General Friant, some 2,000 French troops and ten field guns in high positions took a heavy toll of a large British force disembarking from a task-force fleet in boats, each carrying 50 men to be landed on the beach. The British then rushed and overwhelmed the defenders with fixed bayonets and secured the position, enabling an orderly landing of the remainder of their 17,500-strong army and its equipment. The skirmish was a prelude to the Battle of Alexandria and resulted in British losses of 730 killed and wounded or missing. The French withdrew, losing at least 350 dead or wounded and eight guns taken.[1]

Division General Menou (French commander in Egypt), knew the British had landed but instead of opposing them with sufficient force, he sent Friant with inadequate means and thus ensured his defeat.[2]

Order of Battle[]

The order of battle of the forces involved in listed below.[2]

French Forces

  • Division General Louis Friant in command
  • 18th Dragoon Regiment (2 squadrons)
  • 20th Dragoon Regiment (detachment)
  • 25th Demi-Brigade of the Line (1/2 battalion)
  • 51st Demi-Brigade of the Line (1/2 battalion)
  • 61st Demi-Brigade of the Line (1 battalion)
  • 75th Demi-Brigade of the Line (1 battalion)
  • 15 artillery guns

British Forces

See also[]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named cust
  2. 2.0 2.1 Frederick, p. 195.


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