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Inside Wellington's Peninsular Army: 1808- 1814 (Paperback)

Military > Pre-WWI > Napoleonic > Peninsular War

By Robert Burnham, Ron McGuigan, Howie Muir, Rory Muir
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 328
ISBN: 9781473827615
Published: 14th October 2014



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The British army reached the apogee of its success in the war against Napoleon, and in particular in the famous campaigns in the Peninsula, while under Wellington's command. Yet many aspects of how it achieved its victories have been ignored. This book breaks new ground in a series of meticulous studies which reveal the hidden mechanisms that lie behind triumphs such as Salamanca and Vitoria. At the same time it places Wellington's campaigns in their strategic context and explains how he achieved his success.

The principles underlying the organization of Wellington's army are uncovered in a penetrating analysis. His key subordinates are given the attention they deserve, and there is an authoritative explanation of the importance of rank and seniority. Fascinating studies of bridging operations and the role of reconnaissance are included, and an invaluable appendix lists the titles of hundreds of first-hand accounts by British soldiers.

As featured in.

The Society for Army Historical Research 2015 Christmas Book List

An excellent book that should be in the library of any serious student of the Peninsular War. One of the problems, however, in reviewing a collection of this nature is that the reviewer ultimately wants to know why certain subjects were chosen while others were not -- why is there nothing on the important matters of military medicine, logistics, discipline or women in the army? The best answer I think is that a work of this quality deserve a sequel and I hope we see one. Recommended.

The Napoleon Series - September 2007 - reviewed by D.E. Graves

Who were Wellington's Observing Officers, how were they selected, how did bridging operations work in the early 19th Century, how did reinforcements reach Wellington's regiments? Accounts of the Peninsular War abound, so what does this book add to the genre? Rory Muir and his co-authors have selected some of these specialised areas and made an impressive study of them... All who read it will be a little closer to understanding how Arthur Wellesley honed a disparate set of regiments into a winning Army and defeated the best Napoleon could throw at him.

In all a quirky but enjoyable read and well worth purchasing.

Army Rumour Service

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.


A useful addition to the Peninsular War bookshelf.

Military Modelling Magazine

About Robert Burnham

ROBERT BURNHAM, a retired army officer, has written scores of articles and numerous books on the Napoleonic Wars. He has recently stepped down after twenty-two years as the editor of the Napoleon Series, a fascinating and all-embracing website, the largest of its kind. It is a ‘must’ for anyone interested in the Napoleonic era. It can be accessed at: www.napoleon-series.org

About Ron McGuigan

Ron McGuigan, from Canada, is a recognized specialist on the British Army of the period, who has been researching the era for forty years.

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