Inside Wellington’s Peninsular Army 1808-1814

B2149

The centuries of Anglo-French warfare concluded with the three defeats of Napoleon. Nelson and the Royal Navy conclusively defeated the Franco-Spanish navies at Trafalgar in 1805. From that point the Royal Navy became the dominant sea power for a hundred years, but the final defeat of Napoleon required soldiers on the ground. That led to two defeats for Napoleon at the hands of Wellington. The authors have provided a penetrating picture of Wellington and his Army in the Peninsular to explain what was so special about the commander and his troops. This is a very important book that should be widely read, especially by those French historians who have difficulty in understanding how thoroughly Wellington thrashed Napoleon.

The authors have established reputations that are complimentary to each other and they have based their work on the foundation of Osman’s epic study. This virtually guarantees their success and the resulting work is a pleasure to read with a seamless blending of contributions from the authors with the foundation provided by Osman. An excellent work that is highly recommended and essential reading for anyone with an interest in the period and the deployment of arms.

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NAME: Inside Wellington’s Peninsular Army 1808-1814
DATE: 200215
FILE: R2149
AUTHOR: Ory Muir, Robert Burnham, Howie Muir, Ron McGuigan
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword, frontline
BINDING: soft back
PAGES: 328
PRICE: £14.99
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: Napoleonic Wars, Peninsular War, Wellesley, Rifles, Spain, Portugal, Napoleon, retreat, consolidation, advance, Portugal to France, Bayonne
ISBN: 1-47382-761-2
IMAGE: B2149.jpg
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/pfjasky
LINKS:
DESCRIPTION: The centuries of Anglo-French warfare concluded with the three defeats of Napoleon. Nelson and the Royal Navy conclusively defeated the Franco-Spanish navies at Trafalgar in 1805. From that point the Royal Navy became the dominant sea power for a hundred years, but the final defeat of Napoleon required soldiers on the ground. That led to two defeats for Napoleon at the hands of Wellington. The authors have provided a penetrating picture of Wellington and his Army in the Peninsular to explain what was so special about the commander and his troops. This is a very important book that should be widely read, especially by those French historians who have difficulty in understanding how thoroughly Wellington thrashed Napoleon.

The Royal Navy had a very good time during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Nelson was the clear lead in this solid naval performance and enjoyed some inspired victories. He was also reinforcing the dominant position held by the Royal Navy during the Seven Years War when the British Fleet really established a dominant position that might be challenged in the Napoleonic Wars but never reversed.

On land, it was a different story. Britain had a relatively poor and basically equipped Army that was really a collection of regiments that enjoyed some independence and were led predominately by officers who had purchased their positions. They had squandered opportunities during the American War of Independence and included units that were German mercenaries, rather than a wholly British force. There was much in-fighting as individuals sought to achieve a more prominent position and favour regularly interceded in the conduct of British armies.

Wellington established a new situation when he was sent to command forces in Portugal. He consolidated and trained his troops, initially concentrating on preventing them being pushed into the sea. He then established a policy of dividing Napoleon’s Marshals in the Peninsular and prevented them from forming a decisive numerical superiority. He based his movements and campaigns on solid intelligence gained by his Exploring Officers and made imaginative use of the Rifles, both in fighting rearguards and in advances where their skills as skirmishers and snipers gave the British a valuable advantage in the field.

This book is the first serious contender for the role of definitive history of Wellington, his soldiers and the Peninsular War. Previously the large-scale review completed by Sir Charles Oman had secured that position from its publication in 1913. It is perhaps surprising that no one has made an earlier attempt to produce a definitive history that employs all of the new information that has emerged during the century since the Osman examination.

The authors have established reputations that are complimentary to each other and they have based their work on the foundation of Osman’s epic study. This virtually guarantees their success and the resulting work is a pleasure to read with a seamless blending of contributions from the authors with the foundation provided by Osman. An excellent work that is highly recommended and essential reading for anyone with an interest in the period and the deployment of arms.

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