Major Richard Sharpe (Sean Bean) and his loyal band of chosen men return in Sharpe's Battle. Sharpe is given the task of preparing the glamorous Royal Irish Company, led by Lord Kiely, for their first encounter with the enemy. Previously only used for ceremonial duties the Company finds Sharpe a hard taskmaster. Trouble arises amongst the Irish soldiers when false reports are circulated of a massacre in Ireland perpetrated by the English. When Lord Kiely begins a passionate affair with Juanita, the Spanish partisan leader, the distressed Lady Kiely looks to Sharpe for comfort. Then Sharpe is led into a French trap and he and the Royal Irish Company find themselves up against the vicious Brigadier Loup and seemingly impossible odds.