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Battles of the Jacobite Rebellions (Hardback)

Killiecrankie to Culloden

Scotland Tudors & Stuarts Military 18th Century 17th Century

By Dr Jonathan Oates
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 336
Illustrations: 20
ISBN: 9781526735515
Published: 30th October 2019


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Many books have been written about the Jacobite rebellions – the armed attempts made by the Stuarts to regain the British throne between 1689 and 1746 – and in particular about the risings of 1689, 1715, 1719 and 1745. The key battles have been described in graphic detail. Yet no previous book has given a comprehensive military account of the campaigns in their entirety – and that is the purpose of Jonathan Oates’s new history.

For over fifty years the Jacobites posed a serious threat to the governments of William and Mary, Queen Anne and George I and II. But they were unable to follow up their victories at Killiecrankie, Prestonpans and Falkirk, and the overwhelming defeat suffered by Bonnie Prince Charlie’s army when it confronted the Duke of Cumberland’s forces at Culloden in 1746 was decisive.

The author uses vivid eyewitness testimony and contemporary sources, as well as the latest archaeological evidence, to trace the course of the conflict, and offers an absorbing insight into the makeup of the opposing sides, their leadership, their troops and the strategy and tactics they employed. His distinctive approach gives the reader a long perspective on a conflict which is often viewed more narrowly in terms of famous episodes and the careers of the leading men.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I love history and was drawn to this as I'd only really ever read about the Battle of Culloden. I grew more fascinated by the Jacobite rebellion by watching Outlander.

It is clear from the start that Dr Jonathan Oates has poured so much work in to this book from troop estimations to the names of those involved and even quotes from correspondence at the time.

It is a lengthy read but I felt like I flew through the book due to the writing skill and the amount of detail included.

Each battle allows you to imagine how those involved must have felt at the time and shows you how each side interpreted the outcome of each battle either by exaggerating the numbers they'd succeeded against or been defeated by. Even the weapons used by each side is discussed along with the presentation of the Jacobites, even the English accepted them as brave.

I also wasn't aware of the battles fought in England so I was fascinated by this, previously I thought the Jacobites had only fought in Scotland.

I'd like to thank Dr Jonathan Oates for the hard work that went in to this truly fascinating account and I'd recommend this to anyone with an interest in the Jacobites or military history.

NetGalley, Amy McElroy

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This book was clearly a labor of love by the author, Dr. Jonathan Oates. As prefaced, he spent years gathering research from a variety of infamous archives throughout the UK, as well as actually visiting the locations of the original battlegrounds. Anyone with some time and money could have visited these places and done a bit of research, but what makes this author stand out is the time spent and the attention to detail. Dr. Oates gives phenomenal details, right down to exact approximation of soldiers present on the battlefield and the exact path each took to get there. He goes as far as to inform us of the estimated numbers of calvary and musket fire, as well as details of the landscape. He gives you the exact blue prints of each battle, allowing you to piece it together in your imagination. For me, Dr. Oates helped me to see this all played out throughout each battle as if I was right there on the front. He was the director of this film.

Dr. Oates attention to detail did not only extend to the scientific data regarding each battle, but also the mental and likely emotional patterns of each player. We're lead through each commander's decisions as they are being made, such as that to march their troops forward or to turn back. I actually felt the tension rising throughout each battle even though I already knew the ultimate outcome.

My favorite aspect of this educational text were the researched quotes from each battle. This understandably only added to the sensation that the reader was really there. Many of us are particularly interested in the Battle of Culloden on April 16, 1975. If you want to know what it was like to be on the battlefield that day, this is the closest you will ever get. This book is the ultimate source of the Battles of the Jacobite Rebellions.

NetGalley, Angela Belmont

A very interesting read. The images depicting the battles was a real help when it came to envisioning them. My knowledge of the Jacobean rebellion is rather limited (mostly only what I learned from Outlander) so I thought this book was a perfect way for me to expand my mind a bit... A book not to be missed by anyone interested in James II, Bonnie Prince Charlie, or the thousands of lives that were lost to ensure the correct type of Christianity could sit on the throne.

NetGalley, Shannon Hutchinson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Battles of the Jacobite Rebellions by Dr. Jonathan Oats is a great compilation and overview of the 9 battles that made up the Jacobite Campains.

The author clearly did his research, as the text is packed full of information, credible and plentiful resources and references, and gives the reader everything you need to know about the battles themselves... A great read for a Scottish history fanatic such as myself. Anyone that is interested in Scottish/English history or battle/warfare would love this book.

NetGalley, Rachel Fox

About Dr Jonathan Oates

Dr Jonathan Oates is the Ealing Borough Archivist and Local History Librarian, and he has written and lectured on aspects of the history of London, including its criminal past. His books include Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in Ealing, Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in Lewisham and Deptford, Unsolved Murders in Victorian and Edwardian London, Unsolved London Murders: The 1920s and 1930s, Unsolved London Murders: The 1940s and 1950s and Attack on London. He is also an authority on the Jacobite rebellions of 1714 and 1745 and recently published "Sweet William or The Butcher? The Duke of Cumberland and the '45".

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