The Age of Battles

The Age of Battles

The Quest for Decisive Warfare from Breitenfeld to Waterloo
Russell F. Weigley
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 04/28/2004
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-253-21707-3
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Description

A Main Selection of the History Book Club

Here is narrative history in the grand manner, deeply and passionately informed by a wide understanding of every aspect of the topic: the historical circumstances and political conditions of the contending adversaries, the strategic thinking and the personalities of the military commanders, the tactical maneuvering on the field of battle, the role of armaments and technology, and the performance of the soldiers.

Author Bio

Russell F. Weigley (1930-2004) was Professor of History at Temple University and author of A Great Civil War (winner of the Lincoln Prize); The American Way of War; History of the United States Army; and Eisenhower's Lieutenants: The Campaign of France and Germany, 1944-1945 (all published by IUP). He lived in Philadelphia.

Reviews

““This is an important book by a major military historian. No one who seeks to understand the military history of the United States can do so without consulting the works of Russell F. Weigley . . . ” —John Keegan, The New York Times Book Review “ . . . a truly remarkable volume of military history, which undoubtedly deserves the description of classic. . . . It is a comprehensive, elegantly written military history of Europe . . . Perhaps the greatest merit of the book is that it does not approach its fascinating subject from any particular national point of view. It is truly objective, based on the authority of meticulous scholarship.” —Field Marshal Lord Carver, The Sunday Telegraph (London) “ . . . highly scholarly and wonderfully absorbing . . . ” —The London Review of Books "Russell F. Weigley brings the strongest possible credentials to his detailed, sophisticated, and innovative account of the conduct of war from the Battle of Breitenfeld in 1631 to Waterloo in 1815." —Gunther E. Rothenberg “Analyzing some hundreds of battles, Mr. Weigley makes a compelling case that great battles rarely made much difference.” —Wall Street Journal "Weigley, an authority on the U.S. military experience, has written a superb study of the age of 'decisive battles' . . . Weigley's broad scholarship and lively style make this book indispensable for any collection dealing with the subject or the period." —Library Journal "In this first-class study of the battles of Gustavus, Charles II, Louis XIV, Marlborough, Nelson, Napoleon and Wellington, Weigley . . . brings into sharp focus the irony that warfare throughout the period was most often a matter of prolonged, indecisive struggle that expressed a bankruptcy of national policy." —Publishers Weekly “What Russell F. Weigley writes, the rest of us read . . . a persuasive reminder that even in the age of 'rational' warfare, one can honestly wonder why war seemed an unavoidable policy choice.” —The Journal of American History Here is narrative history in the grand manner, deeply and passionately informed by a wide understanding of every aspect of the topic: the historical circumstances and political conditions of the contending adversaries, the strategic thinking and the personalities of the military commanders, the tactical maneuvering on the field of battle, the role of armaments and technology, and the performance of the soldiers.”

“"What Russell F. Weigley writes, the rest of us read. The Age of Battles is a persuasive reminder that even in the age of 'rational' warfare, one can honestly wonder why war seemed an unavoidable policy choice." —The Journal of American History ”

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Table of Contents

Introduction

Note on Dates

Part One The Profession of Officership and the Birth of Modern War

Chapter One The Return of the Legions: Gustavus Adolphus and Breitenfeld

Chapter Two The Limits of the New Legions: Lutzen and After

Chapter Three Under the Lily Banners: Rocroi

Chapter Four The Army of the Sun King

Chapter Five Marlborough’s Battles: Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde, and Malplaquet

Chapter Six The Emergence of the Great Powers of Eastern Europe

Chapter Seven The Rise of Naval Power

Part Two The Eighteenth Century: The Classical Epoch of Modern War

Chapter Eight The Battles of Frederick the Great

Chapter Nine The French and British Armed Forces from the Rhine to the St. Lawrence

Chapter Ten Toward Wars of Nations: The War of American Independence

Chapter Eleven Prelude to Revolution

Part Three Thunderstrokes of Battle: The French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars

Chapter Twelve The French Revolution: Transformation and Continuity in War

Chapter Thirteen Sea Power and Empire

Chapter Fourteen The Climax of Napoleonic War: To Austerlitz and Jena-Auerstadt

Chapter Fifteen The Gradual Eclipse of the Battle of Annihilation: The Rise of the War of Attrition

Chapter Sixteen Campaigns of Exhaustion and Attrition

Chapter Seventeen The Resurgence of Military Professionalism

Chapter Eighteen The Downfall of Genius

Chapter Ninetten The End of an Age: Waterloo

Chapter Twenty On the Future of War

Bibliographical Notes

Index