Siege of Minorca

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The Siege of Minorca was a siege of Fort St. Philip during the Seven Years War. This contributed to the Declaration of War on 18 May 1756. A French force of 15,000 (led by Duke de Richelieu) laid siege to a smaller garrison of 2,000 British (led by William Blakeney). This siege resulted in a French victory.


A French force under the command of Duke de Richelieu landed on the island (Minorca) and besieged the British garrison, forcing them to surrender after a month long siege. A relief force under the command of Admiral John Byng sailed with the intention to save the island, but was stopped at the Battle of Minorca and withdrew to Gibraltar, and the British garrisons' resistance gave out. Admiral Byng was later executed on charges of treason after being blamed for the loss.


The French held onto Minorca until 1763, when it was returned to Great Britain in return for Guadeloupe. Minorca was again taken by the French in 1781 and ceded to Spain after the American Revolutionary War was over.