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Battle of Waterloo

The Battle of Waterloo took place on 18 June 1815 in the Belgian province of Waterloo. (AUDIO: The Curse of Davros, TV: Human Nature) It saw the defeat of the reconstituted French imperial army of Napoléon Bonaparte by the British under the Duke of Wellington and the Prussians under Marshal Blucher. The time-manipulating Players tried to subvert this by assassinating the Duke before the battle and then issuing false orders to the Prussian reinforcements. These attempts were thwarted by the Second Doctor and his companion Serena. Serena sacrificed herself to take the shot that would have killed the Duke. The Doctor later posed as Napoleon- the two being superficially similar enough for the Doctor to pass himself off as Napoleon to the average French soldier who had never met their Emperor directly but only seen him at a distance- to pass safely through French territory and deliver the message to the Prussians. This defeat marked the end of the French Empire. Bonaparte was deposed as Emperor for the second time and once again exiled. (PROSE: World Game)

As part of a plan to conquer Earth, Davros attempted to alter the outcome of the Battle of Waterloo by providing Napoleon with Dalek weapons, but when Napoleon learned of Davros' true agenda from the Sixth Doctor, he deliberately allowed himself to lose to save humanity from being conquered by the Daleks. (AUDIO: The Curse of Davros)

The Sixth Doctor's companion Flip Jackson never possessed a solid grasp of history and her only knowledge of the battle came from the song. Upon meeting Napoléon only hours before the battle was to take place, she told him of its outcome by quoting the song's opening lyric: "At Waterloo, Napoléon did surrender." (AUDIO: The Curse of Davros)

After the battle, Wellington told the Doctor, "The only thing sadder than a battle lost is a battle won." Some time later, the Fourth Doctor considered how right he was. (PROSE: The Eight Doctors)

Wellington fought alongside Oliver Blazington in the battle. (AUDIO: The Eye of the Jungle)

Major General Fergus Lethbridge-Stewart, an ancestor of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, served as Wellington's right-hand man during the battle. After the battle, Wellington sent Lethbridge-Stewart out onto the battlefield to retrieve any wounded British soldiers still out in the field. Whilst searching, Fergus met a young soldier called Fines who was being stalked by a 'wisp'. (PROSE: The Scales of Injustice, The Bone Merchant)

Walton also fought in the battle. (AUDIO: The Peterloo Massacre)

In an aborted timeline, a troop of Soviet Union T-10 tanks from 1952 were placed in the battle by a time eddy, causing a further massacre. The Ninth Doctor later helped prevent the time eddies from happening in the past. (AUDIO: Cataclysm)

In 1872, Major Thessinger told the Sixth Doctor and Peri Brown that his father had fought in the battle. (AUDIO: The First Sontarans)

Lady Madeline Vaughan told Toshiko Sato that Major Charles Vaughan fought at Waterloo. He was an idol of his descendant Sebastian Vaughan. (AUDIO: The Vigil)


The Battle of Waterloo as simulated by Mr Smith. (TV: The Last Sontaran)

"Waterloo" became a byword for defeats. For example, the Fourth Doctor told the Sontaran Marshal that his defeat was "your Waterloo". (TV: The Sontaran Experiment)

While teaching at Farringham School for Boys in November 1913, John Smith gave a lesson on Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo. (TV: Human Nature)

In a history project for school in 2009, Clyde Langer and Luke Smith were required to show the battle strategies by Wellington and Napoleon at the battle. The pair re-enacted the battle on Mr Smith using futuristic controllers Sarah Jane Smith received from a Wallarian Trader. (TV: The Last Sontaran)

Alternate timeline[]

In an alternate timeline where the Players assassinated the Duke of Wellington before the battle, the French forces won. The Countess convinced Napoleon to continue his plans for the expansion of France regardless of the strain that he put on his men. As a result, the empire which he had created had collapsed by 1865. The countries which he had conquered reverted to smaller kingdoms. They engaged in minor conflicts with each other. This timeline was negated when the Second Doctor learned how the Duke had died. He travelled back to the night of his assassination to avert it. (PROSE: World Game)