Neuve-Chapelle Portugese Cemetery

Historical Information (Source: Wikipedia)

There are 1 831 graves in the cemetery, 239 of them unknown (Desconhecido). Not all of them were amongst the casualties of the battle of 1918 as some have been brought in from as far away as Belgium.


On 9 April 1918 the German Army launched Operation Georgette in the Lys Valley in the hope of a decisive victory before the arrival of American reinforcements. In three successive waves, ten divisions overwhelmed the two Portuguese divisions which were incomplete, badly-organized and surprised in the process of being relieved. Portuguese losses amounted to 7,500 men on that day, and yet the next day, shoulder to shoulder with the Scottish, the survivors defended La Couture before eventually being forced to retreat. The Germans took Estaires, Armentières and Bailleul but failed to take Béthune and Hazebrouck. Operation Georgette was called off on 29 April.