The Charge of the Light Brigade Summary & Analysis by Alfred Lord Tennyson

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“The Charge of the Light Brigade” was written by the English poet Alfred Lord Tennyson in response to a battle during the Crimean War (1853-1855). In this battle, a British cavalry unit—the “Light Brigade”—was commanded to charge against a Russian artillery unit. The order was almost suicidal, and the brigade was decimated in the charge. “The Charge of the Light Brigade” celebrates the self-sacrifice and heroism of the cavalrymen, suggesting that bravery consists of doing one's duty even when it leads to almost certain death.

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