Title: Wellington's Guns: The Untold Story of ...
Publisher: Osprey Publishing
Book Condition: New
2013. Hardcover. Dismissive, conservative and aloof, Wellington treated his artillery with disdain during the Napoleonic Wars - despite their growing influence on the field of battle. This title reveals Wellington's brilliance as a field commander. Num Pages: 472 pages, Illustrations. BIC Classification: 1DBK; 3JH; HBJD1; HBLL; HBW; JW. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 161 x 242 x 41. Weight in Grams: 810. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9781780961149
Synopsis: The history books have forgotten the artillery of Wellington's army during the Napoleonic Wars, but in this book Nick Lipscombe offers a study of the gunners through first-hand accounts, bringing life and color to their heroic actions.
Wellington was, without doubt, a brilliant field commander, but his leadership style was abrupt and occasionally uncompromising, especially to his artillery. He trained his infantry generals as divisional commanders but not army commanders; for his cavalry commanders he had little time often pouring scorn on their inability to control their units and formation in battle; but it was his artillery commanders that he kept at arm's length in particular, suspicious of their different chain of higher command and of their selection through ability, rather than privilege. In consequence, Wellington's relationship with his gunners was dutiful at best, and occasionally failed completely. Frequently frustrated by his lack of control and influence over the artillery off the battlefield, Wellington would occasionally over-exert his authority on it, personally deploying the guns sometimes against the advice of his experts. Wellington's personal distrust culminated in a letter to The Master General of the Ordnance in December 1815 in which he commented, 'to tell you the truth, I was not very pleased with the Artillery in the battle of Waterloo'. This resulted in the mistaken belief that the gunners performed badly at this crucial battle, supposedly abandoning their guns and fleeing the field, in direct contrast to French eyewitness accounts.
Wellington's Guns is the long overdue story of this often stormy relationship, the frustrations, challenges, the characters, and the achievements of the main protagonists as well as a detailed account of the British artillery of this period. Even with the valiant contribution of some 12,000 gunner officers, NCOs and rank and file, five battery honour titles, and numerous primary accounts, this is a story which has never been told. This despite the fact that the artillery itself was revolutionized during the course of the Napoleonic Wars from developing the vital 'danger-close' missions in the woods of Hougoumont, Belgium to the mountain gun attacks during the Pyrenean campaign of the Peninsular War and creeping barrages and Congreve rockets in all theatres, with the ultimate result that the artillery itself became a crucial component of any future and indeed modern army.
About the Author:
Colonel Nick Lipscombe was born in 1958 in Angers, France. He has a degree in business studies and an MSc in defence studies. He was commissioned into the Royal Artillery in 1980. During his 30 years in the British Army he has seen considerable operational service with the British and American armies, as well as with NATO and the UN. He was awarded the US Bronze Star in 2006.
A keen interest in military history followed his academic studies at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst concentrating on the Napoleonic era and the Peninsular War in particular. He is Chairman of Peninsular War 200, the UK's official organization for the commemoration of the bicentenary of the Peninsular War and a key member of the Waterloo 200 committee. He speaks German and Spanish, currently works in Portugal and lives in Spain with his wife Janny and their three daughters. The author lives in Spain.
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