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The Battle of Plassey 1757 (Paperback)

The Victory That Won an Empire

Military > Frontline Books P&S History > By Century > 18th Century

By Stuart Reid
Frontline Books
Pages: 280
Illustrations: 16 black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781399020879
Published: 26th July 2022



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Britain was rapidly emerging as the most powerful European nation, a position France long believed to be her own. Yet with France still commanding the largest continental army, Britain saw its best opportunities for expansion lay in the East. Yet, as Britain’s influence increased through its official trading arm, the East India Company, the ruler of Bengal, Nawab Siraj-ud-daulah, sought to drive the British out of the sub-continent and turned to France for help.

The ensuing conflict saw intimate campaigns fought by captains and occasionally colonels and by small companies rather than big battalions. They were campaigns fought by individuals rather than anonymous masses; some were heroes, some were cowards and most of them were rogues on the make. The story is not only about Robert Clive, a clerk from Shropshire who became to all intents and purposes an emperor, but also about Eyre Coote an Irishman who fought with everyone he met, about Alexander Grant a Jacobite who first escaped from Culloden and then, Flashman-like was literally the last man into the last boat to escape Calcutta and the infamous Black Hole.

The fighting culminated in Robert Clive’s astonishing victory at Plassey where just 3,000 British and sepoy troops defeated Siraj-ud-Daulah’s Franco-Bengali army of 18,000 in the space of only forty minutes. The victory at Plassey in 1757 established Britain as the dominant force in India, the whole of which gradually come under British control and became the most prized possession in its empire. Few battles in history have ever had such profound consequences.

Originally published by Pen & Sword Books in hardcover (2017), a new trade paperback edition of "The Battle of Plassey 1757: The Victory That Won an Empire" by author and historian Stuart Reide is now available for a new generation of readers with an interest in 18th Century British Military History. Organized and presented in six informative chapters, "The Battle of Plassey 1757: The Victory That Won an Empire" also features twelve Appendices, thirty pages of Notes, a one page Bibliography, and a three page Index. While with the highest recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library British Military History collections.

Read the full review here

Midwest Book Review

Thoroughly researched with a brisk narrative.

Military Heritage, March 2018 – reviewed by Christopher Miskimon

Over half of this book and the epic story it vividly recounts is appendices, a rich trove of information!

Military Historical Society

As featured in

The Armourer, January 2018

One of my best-loved books when I was a nipper was With Clive In India - I have to confess that not a single word of that book has permeated my brain to the extent that I could relate anything about Clive and how he and his 3,000 troops defeated a far larger army of 18,000 and thereby became a legend. A timely reminder, then, from Stuart Reid!

Books Monthly

Readers with a particular, and deep, interest in the early military campaigns of the East India Company are likely to want to purchase this book and will appreciate the author’s research.

Reviewed by Arthur Harman for Miniature Wargames

An interesting book and one that has been well written by a noted author.

Stuart Asquith

About Stuart Reid

Stuart Reid was born in Aberdeen in 1954 into a family with a tradition of service in the Army stretching back through the Battle of Mons to Culloden and beyond. He is the author of numerous military history publications and has written extensively upon Scottish military history during the seventeenth century Civil War and the Jacobite period.

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