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Fire Over the Rock (Hardback)

The Great Siege of Gibraltar

British History Military

By James Falkner
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 192
ISBN: 9781844159154
Published: 21st May 2009
Last Released: 29th May 2009

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The great siege of Gibraltar was the longest recorded in the annals of the British army. Between 1779 and 1783 a small British force defended the Rock against the Spanish and the French who were determined take this strategically vital point guarding the entrance to the Mediterranean. The tenacity and endurance shown by the attackers and defenders alike, and the sheer ingenuity of the siege operations mounted by both sides, make the episode an epic of military history, and the story gives us a fascinating insight into the realities of siege warfare. In this, the first full study of the siege for over 40 years, James Falkner draws on a wide range of contemporary sources to tell the exciting tale of a huge and complex operation.

"Overall, a well researched and lively read of the Great Siege of Gibraltar that will entertain those with even a passing interest in it."

Australian Army Journal

Falkner uses a number of contemporary sources to tell the story of the Rock, including not only military and naval but civilian as well; they suffered as much, if not more, than the soldiers and performed their part in its defense. Falkner also notes the fact that Gibraltar essentially tied down enemy resources that could have been used to greater effect elsewhere.

This is an important addition to the literature of the Napoleonic Era.


Read the full review here.

The Past In Review

About James Falkner

James Falkner is a leading writer on seventeenth and eighteenth-century warfare and he has made a special study of the War of the Spanish Succession (1702-1713) and the military exploits of the Duke of Marlborough. His book, Great and Glorious Days: Marlborough's Battles 1704-1709, is one of the outstanding studies of the subject. A former British army infantry officer, he has frequently led tours of the major eighteenth-century battlefields. His most recent books include battlefield guides to Blenheim 1704 and Ramillies 1706, Marlborough Goes to War: Eyewitness Accounts 1702-1713, Marlborough's Sieges, Marlborough's Battlefields, and Fire Over the Rock: The Great Siege of Gibraltar 1779-1783.

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