Aligarh Fort, one of the strongest forts in India, was fortified and commanded by a French mercenary officer Pierre Perron. It was laid under siege on 1 September 1803, by the British76th Regiment, now known as the Yorkshire Regiment, under General Lord Gerard Lake. It was captured from the Marathas on 4 September 1803. During the assault, fourteen ditches were lined with sword-blades and poisoned chevaux-de-frise around the fort by the French. The walls were reinforced with French artillery and tigers and lions of Scindia’s menagerie were also used by the French. During the battle, the British lost as many as 900 soldiers. The then Duke of Wellington declared the capture as "One of the most extraordinary feats".