On September 2, thousands of French and Russian actors re-created the 200-year-old Battle of Borodino, which led to the defeat of Napoleon's forces and a rise in Russian patriotism. Nearly 100,000 onlookers watched the reenactment of the critical battle, fought on September 7, 1812, as Napoleon's forces advanced on Moscow. The outnumbered French forces won the bloody battle but lost the war after being driven out of Moscow by Russian forces after local residents had torched and abandoned the city. Napoleon's defeat led Russian to replace French as the dominant language of the Russian aristocracy. Speaking at the reenactment, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that together with World War II, the Battle of Borodino was "proof of the unparalleled patriotism of our people."