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- The Military Experience in the Age of Reason by Christopher Duffy.
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There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. This book is a contribution to what might be called the anthropological school of military history.
It is about a time when the modern organized society was just beginning, and the timeless system of hierarchy and patronage was coming to an end. When Europe was ruled by theoretically absolute monarchs who practically had less power then a modern government because of the resistance of entrenched custom.
When wars were simple power struggles, commanded by noble-born officers who came because that was what nobles did. And fought by soldiers who seem to have quite reasonably regarded the army as another form of workhouse. The military culture of the eighteenth century is described in detail. It was made by it's time and place and took it's characteristics from it. In some ways it was like the modern military, in others it was like the medieval. And in others perhaps it would not be recognizable to either.
Above all it shows the eighteenth century soldiers as human figures with faults and virtues. Some officers were the sort that gave the Old Regime a bad name, being corrupt or cruel. Others were intelligent, cultured, and compassionate. Some men were pillagers and vandals. Others were honorable men who took pride in their calling. But whoever they were, the author gives a picture of their life as they marched with weary feet along the road of war.
Interesting and entertaining this book gives the reader the impression of what fighting was like during the 18th century. The entire army is covered and supplied with frequent examples from memoirs.
Military Experience in the Age of Reason
There is also a chapter on frontier warfare to let readers know how war was fought in the colonies. I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to know more about army life in the 18th century. Christopher Duffy has produced one of the finest introductions to a period of military history ever published. Writing in a highly enjoyable, almost conversational style, he guides the reader through every phase of military interest during the mid-eighteen century. Citing numerous first persons accounts, written by kings and captains, princes and privates, Professor Duffy offers insight not found in many military histories.
This book is highly recommended to anyone interested in the Seven Years War, American Revolution, or the evolution of Napoleonic tactics. Historical wargamers will find the book especially enlightening. If you really want to understand the military experience in the age of reason, read this. One person found this helpful. Had a borrowed copy and wanted my own - definitely worth it!
One person found this helpful 2 people found this helpful.
Military Experience in the Age of Reason : Christopher Duffy :
As described, shipped quickly. Excellent book - lots of good information. See all 10 reviews. Most recent customer reviews. Published on January 3, Published on September 15,
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