First book edition
|Genre(s)||Historical short story|
|Published in||The Daily Mail (original)
The Sharpe Appreciation Society (book)
|Publisher||The Daily Mail|
|Media type||Print (Newspaper)|
|Preceded by||"Sharpe's Regiment"|
|Followed by||"Sharpe's Siege"|
Sharpe's Christmas, is a short story by historical fiction author Bernard Cornwell. It features Cornwell's fictional hero Richard Sharpe. It was originally written for British newspaper The Daily Mail which serialised it during the Christmas season of 1994. An extended version was published by The Sharpe Appreciation Society in a short story collection of the same name in 2003 to raise funds for The Bernard and Judy Cornwell Foundation.
Sharpe's Christmas is set in 1813, towards the end of the Peninsular War and falls after Sharpe's Regiment. Major Richard Sharpe and the Prince of Wales Own Volunteers have to stop the French garrison of the fortress of Ochagavia from escaping back to France. The garrison consists of 300 soldiers, plus their women and children and another 1,000 men from the 75th Line Infantry Regiment commanded by Colonel Caillou. The garrison is commanded by Colonel Gudin, an old friend of Sharpe's from his days in India. To ensure the garrison's swift escape, Brigadier General Picard is sent with his brigade to the village of Irati in the Pyrenees, along Gudin's escape route. Sharpe fends off Picard's brigade, but allows Colonel Gudin, the women and children and the 75th's Imperial Eagle to escape.
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