Saturday 29 September 2018

Home and Away; The British Experience of War 1618-1721. Proceedings of the 2017 Helion and company century of the soldier conference

This is a very useful smorgasbord of different papers on a rough theme. I didn't go to the Conference but the articles stand on their own as additional material on 17thc warfare.
First up is Far and Away; Fighting, Campaigning and Travelling During the English Civil War by Peter Gaunt. Very interesting analysing the experience of being out and about through the memoirs of some of the Civil Wars' most noted diarists Royalist and Parliamentarian.
'The Disarmed Multitude'; the impact of the Lostwithiel Campaign on the Earl of Essex's Army and its Reconstituion for Second Newbury. Simon Marsh. This examines the disastrous Cornish campaign and the efforts to revive the fortunes of the army after their defeat.
Warfare in the Wilderness; the Indian war of 1688 Rachael Abbis. This essay is interesting investigating the military build-up in the Colonies in particular the New England frontier that eventually became full scale war.
The Rank and File of the British Army 1685-1688 Stephen Ede-Borrett finds out whether the make up of the armies was as described by many historians as the scum of society or were they made up of different stock? Using the deserter notices the author investigates.
'For God's sake come home' - Soldiers' Wives 1620-1660 Laurence Spring. The author investigates the world of soldier's wives during the 17thc. This is a subject of interest to a number of people and Laurence finds some useful documents.
A House Called Loyalty - the Archaeology of a Civil War Siege Alan Turton. The epic sieges (for there were three) of Basing is a fascinating story by the expert on the subject. Investigations showing the layout of the fortifications and placing the sometimes bitter skirmishes in situ are in this study.
'His Majesties' Scenographer' the Military Art of Wenceslaus Hollar.  David Flintham. Prague-born Hollar is under the glass in this study. Many of his etchings are reproduced with an emphasis on the works he carried out during the Civil War that is the main focus. This is well-illustrated with Hollar's work
Michael Jones and the Defeat of Royalist Ireland 1647-9. Jon Day. Michael Jones is not a well known figure in history but he was responsible for laying the groundwork for Cromwell's notorious campaign in Ireland.
All in all a great read with many relayed points that give a useful addition to your military library. 

Saturday 22 September 2018

Blood's Revolution (Holcroft Blood 2) Angus Donald

Newly returned from years of secret work in Paris, Lieutenant Holcroft Blood, a brilliant but unusual gunnery officer in His Majesty's Ordnance, must now face King James II's enemies on the gore-drenched battlefields of the British Isles.

But after the victory at Sedgemoor -and its cruel aftermath, the Bloody Assizes, in which the Duke of Monmouth's rebellion was ruthlessly crushed - many powerful men have grown tired of Catholic James's brutal, autocratic rule and seek to invite William, the Protestant Prince of Orange, to seize the thrones of the Three Kingdoms.

While revolution brews in the gentlemen's clubs of London, Holcroft discovers that a sinister French agent, known only by his code name Narrey, has followed him across the Channel and intends to murder him. Worse, Holcroft must decide whether to join the conspirators, including his old friend Jack Churchill, now Lord Marlborough, and support Dutch William's invasion - or remain loyal to his unpopular king.


War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718-1720)

Tercentenary this year - a rare instance when the British and French were on the same side. Wiki

Compagnies franches de la marine 1718

From the Wiki 

Major conflicts and commitments[edit]

Companies free men took part in every conflict involving France of 1690-1761 in Europe, the Americas, and India. Their commitments were normally related to naval warfare, but they were very often used on land. Are listed here as their main commitments. Naval battles isolated and "helping hands" delivered during the guerrilla war in America are too many to be presented.

In Europe[edit]

War of the League of Augsburg (1688-1697)
  • Battle of La Hogue (29 May 1692)
  • Battle of Lagos (27 June 1693)
War of the Spanish Succession (1709-1714)
  • Battle of Malplaquet (Sept. 11, 1709)
  • Battle of Denain (24 July 1712)
War of the Polish Succession (1733-1738)
  • Siege of Danzig (1734) (February 22 to July 9, 1734)
Seven Years' War (1756-1763)
  • Battle of Minorca (1756)
  • Battle of Lagos (19 August 1759)
  • Battle of Quiberon Bay (20 November 1759)
  • Battle of Belle-Isle (1761)

In America[edit]

King William's War[edit]

  • Siege of Quebec (16 to 21 October 1690)
  • Shipping Cartagena (2 May 1697)

Queen Anne's War[edit]

  • Defense of Guadeloupe (1703)
  • Shipments Rio (1710 and June 1711 to February 1712)

Inter War Period[edit]

  • War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718-1720)
  • Naval battle of the Dauphine (Bay Island Mobile ) (19 August 1719)
  • Seat Pensacola (2 September 1719)
  • Wars Foxes (1712-1714 and 1729)
  • Wars Natchez (1717-1719 and 1729-1731)
  • Wars Chickasaws (1736 and 1739-1740)

King George's War[edit]

French and Indian War[edit]

  • Battle of Fort Necessity (July 3, 1754)
  • Battle of the Monongahela (9 July 1755)
  • Battle of Fort Carillon (8 July 1758)
  • Siege of Louisbourg (June–July 1758)
  • Defense of Guadeloupe (April 1758)
  • Plains of Abraham (September 13, 1759)
  • Battle of Sainte-Foy (April 28, 1760)
  • Defense of Martinique (1761)

In India[edit]

Third Intercolonial War
  • Battle of Negapatam (6 July 1746)
  • Seat Madras (August 21 September 1746)
  • Siege of Pondicherry (Fall 1748)
Fourth Intercolonial War (1754-1760)
  • Battle of Cuddalore (29 April 1758)
  • Battle of Negapatam (3 August 1758)
  • Seat Madras (December 1758-February 1759)
  • Battle of Pondicherry (10 September 1759)
  • Siege of Pondicherry (March 1760 to January 4, 1761)

Thursday 20 September 2018

Prestonpans 1745-2018 photos by Sheryle Price-Jones

This is a lovely set of photos from last weekend near Edinburgh. The caption reads
A large number of groups supported this event including Lace Wars, The Charles Edward Stuart Society, Claymore, Battlescar, Alan Breck's Regiment including the Edinburgh City Guard, Glenbuckets Regiment, The Troop and Lambton's 68th. The overall event itself was co-hosted by two charities: The Battle of Prestonpans 1745 Heritage Trust and the Scottish Battlefields Trust. Photos Courtesy of Sheryle Price-Jones.

Prestonpans wiki

The Favourite - 2018 trailer

Early 18th century. England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. A frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots. As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfil her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.

Wednesday 19 September 2018

Siege of Pilsen 1618

Today four hundred years ago the Siege of Pilsen began. Regarded as the first action in the Thirty Years War. Mansfeld's Protestant forces surrounded the city but did not have the troops for an assault. They decided to starve it out. It's a chilling note to think that we generally won't live to see the end of the 30 Years War in 2048. However raise a glass for Pilsen. Some reenactors from the UK are travelling to Pilsen for the anniversary of the assault in November. Good luck people. 

Tuesday 18 September 2018

Sword and Pistol

 Found these rules from 1985 the other day. Published by Tabletop Games. From the era when rules weren't expensive and you could buy a few on spec. I might use them for skirmishes in the Prayerbook Rebellion (1549) - anybody know anyone doing Tudor figures? Get a copy of the rules here

Monday 17 September 2018

Bretitenfeld 1631

On September 17, 1631, the troops of Tilly met in the village near Peizig on the United Swedish-Saxon army under the leadership of King Gustav Adolf of Sweden.

Wednesday 12 September 2018


One of the most celebrated moments in Scottish history, the Jacobite Rising of 1745 is often romanticised. Drawing on the work of historians and a wide range of contemporary sources, this book seeks to strip away some of the myths surrounding the Jacobites and the Highland army by looking at what they really wore, what they fought with, and what items they used to show their allegiance to the Prince and the Jacobite cause. Prince Charles Edward Stuart's army and the Jacobites are examined in detail from their clothes, weapons, and material culture.
This lavishly-illustrated book will appeal to anyone interested in the Jacobite Risings: reenactors, wargamers, fans of Outlander, and the Scottish diaspora who, thanks to a growing interest in family history, are keen to know more about their Scottish heritage

Jan III Sobieski attacks the Turkish army at Vienna from the Kahlenberg

From the Polish/Italian movie The Day of the Siege September Eleven 1683 also known as Die Belagerung (2012)

Tuesday 11 September 2018

Malplaquet 1709

The Battle of Malplaquet, 1709: The Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene Entering the French Entrenchments Louis Laguerre
The bloodiest battle of the 18th century fought today in 1709. Wiki

The Battle of Saint Cast 1758

The British got rather good at amphibious operations during the Seven Years War but it didn't go to plan at Saint Cast on this day in 1758. Wiki
British troops ay Saint Cast by Andre Joineau from here
Regiments at Saint Cast
French language site on the battle

Friday 7 September 2018

Nunney Castle near Frome

 This is my local castle. Fell to the Roundheads in 1645.

Inspired by the French chateaux he'd seen in the Hundred Years War John de la Mare started Nunney castle near Frome in the 1370s. Never a serious military fortress being overlooked by rolling hills it was no doubt an impressive enough status symbol for the time. It passed into the Prater family in the 1560s. The castle was besieged in 1645 when the New Model Army's siege train was despatched from the main force to finish this outpost of Royalist resistance. It fell without much effort, this was not a building made to resist artillery. The garrison was tiny and it is said that they made pigs scream to make it seem they had plenty of pork to slaughter. It's said that it fell to Cromwell or Fairfax but this segment from Anglia Rediviva shows that only a small detachment was needed to reduce it.
The General resting all the next day a t Sherborne, to settle the business of the county. And on Monday (after Sir Lewis Dives and the prisoners , together with the club-leaders before mentioned, who were had in hold, were sent away with a guard to London) the army marched to Castle-Carew (save that Colonel Rainsborough with his own and Colonel Hammond’s regiments, and two pieces of ordnance, was sent to Nunney-castle, for the reducing thereof), th e rest of the army marched that night to Castle-Carew: the next day the General himself went to view Nunney castle, and found it to be a very strong piece. The next day the army marched to Chue, nine miles, and ill way;
Thursday 21st, in the morning, to encourage us in our engagements, we received intelligence of the surrender ofNunney-castle to Colonel Rainsborough, upon condition to have liberty to go to their own house

Prussian Marches of the Soldier King Frederick William I

Turin 1706

The Prussians break the French line at Stura, outside Turin 7 September 1706
Anniversary of the end of this siege. Wiki