Charge of the Light Brigade

8 August 2016

How far do Sources 1 and 2 challenge the impression of the Charge of the Light Brigade given in Source 3? The Charge of the Light Brigade was started by an order given by Lord Raglan to charge. It last half an hour and 113 men were killed. Source 3 is a ‘recalling’ of the brutality of the Charge of the Light Brigade. It shows the perspective of someone watching the battle rather than taking part so is therefore limited. Although, it is still useful as is written by a witness who saw it happen at the time of the event.

There are various features of source 1 and 2 that challenge source 3’s impression of the Charge of the Light Brigade. For example, source 1 portrays the appearance of only Russian soldiers and of the English look triumphant. Whereas source 3 states ‘our men tried to drag their mangled bodies’ giving the impression that many were badly injured. Source 2 challenges source 3 by saying ‘right thro’ the line they broke’ this gives the impression the English troops managed to get onto Russian ground and shows them as more successful than stated in source.

Charge of the Light Brigade Essay Example

In addition source 2 agrees with source 1 in this sense as can be seen in the picture, the English soldiers have reached the Russians and the Russians are made to look weak. Source 2 however is limited as is written as a poem, so may be dramatized to add effect and make to it more interesting to read. Also the information included in the poem was written on the Isle of Weight after hearing Russell’s report so is very limited. Despite the various things that challenge source 3 in source 2 and 1 there are also many things that agree with it.

When looking at the cartoon in source 1 it appears to disagree with source 3, however looking at the provenance may change this opinion. It was published in the magazine ‘Punch’ which was a teasing and dramatizing newspaper. It was also only one month after the Charge of the Light Brigade and everyone knew how badly the English had performed. It appears to pick fun at Lord Cardigan and blame him for the loss that day. Source 3 and 2 also agree that a lot of men were badly injured or killed that day.

This is seen when source 2 states ‘Then they rode back, but not not this six hundred’ the emphasis on the not shows that nowhere near six hundred of them rode back. In source 3 this is shown when Sergeant-Major Timothy Gowing states ‘but few escaped. ’ Source 2 agrees with source 3 when it states the soldiers were ‘shatter’d and sunder’d. ’ This coincides with the image of the soldiers having to ‘drag their mangled bodies’ the word drag shows exhaustion and that they used every last bit of energy to try and escape the battle field.

In conclusion, source 1 and 2 mainly agree with the image of the Charge of the Light Brigade portrayed in source 3. Source 1 is making fun of Lord Cardigan and how terribly wrong the whole situation went so is a lot less serious than the other 2 sources. They all however give the image of the battle being a bloody, ‘brutal’ one in which many lives were lost. Source 3 was written 41 years after this shows the charge still has an impact years later and people still do not know the full truth.

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