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Scarlett, Sir James Yorke

SCARLETT, SIR JAMES YORKE (1799-1871), British general, was the second son of the 1st Baron Abinger. Educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge. He entered the army as a cornet in 1818, and in 1830 became major in the sth Dragoon Guards. From 1836 until 1841 he was Conservative member of Parliament for Guildford. In 1840 he obtained the command of his regiment, which he held for nearly fourteen years. In the Crimean War the sth Dragoon Guards formed part of the Heavy Cavalry Brigade (of which Scarlett was appointed brigadier); it was sent to the Black Sea in 1854, and suffered very heavily from cholera in the camps of Varna. Scarlett underwent his baptism of fire before Sebastopol. On the zsth of October 1854 occurred the battle of Balaklava, at which the Heavy Brigade achieved a magnificent success against the Russian cavalry, and had the brigadier (who in the previous charge had been in the thickest of the melee) been allowed to advance as he wished, might have converted the disastrous charge of the Light Brigade into a substantial success (see BALAKLAVA and CRIMEAN WAR). For his services on this day Scarlett was promoted major-general, and in 1855 was made K.C.B. After a short absence in England he returned to the Crimea with the local rank of lieutenant-general to command the British cavalry. After the Peace of Paris Sir James Scarlett commanded the cavalry at Aldershot until 1860, and was adjutant-general of the army from 1860 to 1865. In the latter year he became commander of the Aldershot Camp, a post which he held until his retirement in 1870. He died in 1871. In 1869 he had been made G.C.B.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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