A highly illustrated study of the battle of Malplaquet, the last and bloodiest of Marlborough's victories in the 18th century War of the Spanish Succession. In 1709, after eight years of war, France was on her knees. There was not enough money left in the treasury to pay, equip, or feed the army and a bad harvest led to starvation throughout the kingdom. Things were so bad that King Louis XIV was forced to offer to end the War of Spanish Succession on humiliating terms for his country. However, the allied powers–Britain, the Dutch Republic, and the Holy Roman Empire–refused Louis' offer, believing that one more successful campaign would utterly destroy French power. This book examines the campaign of 1709, culminating in the battle of Malplaquet, which would prove Louis' enemies disastrously wrong. Led by the Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene of Savoy, the allied armies achieved a tactical victory–but it was a hollow one. The allies suffered 23,000 casualties to the French 11,000 in what was the bloodiest battle of the 18th century. The scale of casualties shocked Europe and led to a reversal of fortunes, with the dismissal of Marlborough and a newly confident King Louis resolving to fight on. When the war finally ended, it did so on terms favorable to France. In this illustrated title, Simon MacDowall examines the campaign in full and shows how, though it is generally accepted that Marlborough was never defeated, the Battle of Malplaquet was ultimately a French strategic victory.
A single day in the heat of armed conflict can shape the future of the world. Throughout history, individual battles have inspired the birth of nations, the devastation of cultures and the triumph of revolutions. Yet while some battles rise up as the cornerstones of history, others fade in our cultural memory, forgotten as minor skirmishes. Why is this so? What makes a battle "important"? Celebrated veteran and military expert Michael Lee Lanning offers a provocative response with The Battle 100: The Stories Behind History's Most Influential Battles. Lanning ranks history's 100 greatest battles according to their influence, both immediate and long-term. Thought-provoking and controversial, Lanning's rankings take us to the heart of the battles and reveal their true greatness.
Three hundred years ago Queen Anne's Captain-General, John Churchill 1st Duke of Marlborough, led the Allied armies in an epic struggle against the powerful French forces of Louis XIV, in campaigns that stretched across wide areas of the Low Countries, France and Germany. Marlborough's victories at the Schellenberg, Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde and Malplaquet are among the most remarkable feats in all of British military history. Marlborough broke France's military power for a hundred years. As James Falkner demonstrates in this, the first full-scale guide to the subject, the story of these famous campaigns makes compelling and exciting reading, and the sites associated with them are evocative places that can easily be visited today. His battlefield guide is essential reading for anyone who is keen to understand the military history of the era, and it is an invaluable companion for visitors to the many battlefields associated with Marlborough's triumphs.
With its impressive breadth of coverage – both geographically and chronologically – the International Encyclopedia of Military History is the most up-to-date and inclusive A-Z resource on military history. From uniforms and military insignia worn by combatants to the brilliant military leaders and tacticians who commanded them, the campaigns and wars to the weapons and equipment used in them, this international and multi-cultural two-volume set is an accessible resource combining the latest scholarship in the field with a world perspective on military history.