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Charge of the Light Brigade - The area disputed between Ukraine and Russia is back in the news these days with Vladimir Putin annexing it. Photo by: WikiCommons

The Irish in the Crimea and the Charge of the Light Brigade

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Charge of the Light Brigade - The area disputed between Ukraine and Russia is back in the news these days with Vladimir Putin annexing it. Photo by: WikiCommons

As The Word noted: “In his excellent work, Ireland and the Crimean War, the historian David Murphy reckons that of 111,000 men who fought in Britain’s Crimean army, over 37,000, or one-third, were Irish, of whom some 7,000 were killed. About 4,000 more Irishmen served there in the British navy. The newly introduced Victoria Cross was awarded to 28 Irishmen in the Crimea, Sgt (later General Sir) Luke O’Connor from Elphin, Co Roscommon, winning the first ever VC in 1857.

"Over 100 Irishmen served as British army surgeons; and some 33 Irish Sisters of Mercy and Sisters of Charity went as nurses. Florence Nightingale visited the Mercy Sisters in Dublin in 1852, when she considered becoming a Catholic and joining their order. Eight Irish priests went as chaplains to the Crimea, where three of them died.”

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