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The part played in the Civil War (1861-1865) by the small Marine Corps of the United and Confederate States is overshadowed by the confrontations of the great armies. Nevertheless, the coastal and riverine campaigns were of real importance, given the strategic significance of the Federal blockade of southern ports, and of the struggle for the Mississippi River. Marines wearing blue and grey fought in many dramatic actions afloat and ashore - ship-to-ship engagements, cutting-out expeditions, and coastal landings. This book offers a comprehensive summary of all such battles, illustrated with rare early photographs, and meticulously researched color plates detailing the often obscure minutiae of Marine uniforms and equipment.
The commanders who led the opposing armies of the American War of Independence (1775-1783) came from remarkably different backgrounds. They included not only men from Britain and America, but from Germany, France and Spain as well. Some were from the great families of the "Old World," while others were frontiersmen or farmers in the "New World." Despite their differing origins, all were leaders in the events that led to the establishment of the United States of America. This book details the appearance, careers and personalities of the commanders on both sides. It covers such famous figures as George Washington and Lord Cornwallis along with less well-known men such as Admiral Suffren and Bernando de Galvez.
In the campaigns of the French Revolutionary (1792-1802) and Napoleonic Wars (1799-1815), the deserved reputation of the British infantry has tended to overshadow the contribution of the cavalry, but in fact they did form an integral part of the army, carrying out duties crucial to the success of other arms. British Cavalryman 1792-1815 recounts what these duties were and examines the men who performed them. The different regiments of the cavalry are listed and some of the arm's more exotic or professional corps, such as the King's German Legion, examined.
During this period, the British army earned itself a formidable reputation as a fighting force. However, due to its role as a police force at home, and demonisation by American propaganda during the American Revolution (1763-1776), the army was viewed as little removed from a penal institution run by aristocratic dilettantes. This view, still held by many today, is challenged by Stuart Reid, who paints a picture of an increasingly professional force. This was an important time of change and improvement for the British Army, and British Redcoat 1740-1793 fully brings this out in its comprehensive examination of the lives, conditions and experiences of the late 18th-century infantryman
The capitulation of Napoleon and his army at Sedan in September 1870 shook Paris to its foundations. The Second Empire was swept from power, and a Government of National Defence hastily put in its place. To replace the weakened professional army the French called for a 'war of the people'. A companion volume to Men-at-Arms 233: The French Army 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War (1) Imperial Troops, this book covers the forces that participated in the second half of the campaign, including the regular army, l' Armeé d' Afrique, la Garde Mobile, la Garde Nationale and the naval forces. The text is accompanied by contemporary photographs and detailed colour plates.
Osprey's elite series title for Japan's samurai horse and foot guards, from 1540 to 1724. Each great samurai warlord, or daimyo, had a 'household division' of troops, known as the Hatamoto - 'those who stand under the flag'. The Hatamoto included the personal bodyguards, both horse (uma mawari) and foot (kachi); the senior generals (bugyo), the standard bearers and color-guard, couriers, and other samurai under the warlord's personal command. Apart from bodyguard and other duties in immediate attendance on the daimyo, both horse and foot guards often played crucial roles in battle - their intervention could turn defeat into victory, and their collapse meant final disaster. As favored fighting men under the warlord's eye, members of the bodyguards could hope for promotion, and some rose to be daimyo themselves. All three great leaders of the 16-17th century - including Oda, Hideyoshi and Tokugawa - had their own elite corps. Such troops were naturally distinguished by dazzling apparel and heraldry, with banners both carried and attached to the back of the armor, all of which are detailed in an array of color artwork specially created for this publication.
Coats of arms were at first used only by kings and princes, then by their great nobles, but by the mid-13th century arms were being used extensively by the lesser nobility, knights and those who later came to be styled gentlemen. In some countries the use of arms spread even to merchants, townspeople and the peasantry. From the mundane to the fantastic, from simple geometric patterns to elaborate mythological beasts, this fascinating work by Terence Wise explores the origins and appearance of medieval heraldic devices in an engagingly readable style accompanied by numerous illustrations including eight full page colour plates by Richard Hook.
The two attempts by Khubilai Khan, the Mongol Emperor of China, to invade Japan in 1274 and 1281 represent unique events in the history of both countries. It pitted the samurai of Japan against the fierce warriors of the steppes who had conquered half the known world.The Mongol conquest of Korea left them with a considerable quantity of maritime resources, which enabled them to thin seriously for the first time about crossing the Tsushima strait between Korea and Japan with an army of invasion. The first invasion, which began with savage raiding on the islands of Tsushima and Iki, made a landfall at Hakata Bay and forced the samurai defenders back inland. Luckily for the Japanese defenders, a storm scattered the Mongol invasion fleet, leading them to abandon this attempt. In the intervening years the Japanese made defensive preparation, and the Mongol increased their fleet and army, so that the second invasion involved one of the largest seaborne expeditions in world history up to that time. This attempt was aimed at the same landing site, Hakata Bay, and met stiffer opposition form the new defences and the aggressive Japanese defenders. Forced buy a series of major Japanese raids to stay in their ships at anchor, the Mongol fleet was obliterated by a typhoon - the kami kaze (divine wind) - for the loss of as many as 90 per cent of the invaders. Although further preparations were made for an assault by the Mongols at the end of the 13ht and beginning of the 14th centuries, this proved to be the last realistic threat of an invasion of the home islands till 1945.
In January 1794 the French 'Army of Italy' was commanded by General Dumerbion and he acknowledged a great debt to his 25-year-old commander of artillery - Napoleon Bonaparte. The French Revolution had resulted in major changes in the military system, conscription created a national army and new tactics and initiatives allowed an officer of such promise as Napoleon to rise quickly through the ranks. By 1796 he was the general commanding the French in Italy and at the conclusion of fourteen months campaigning he was the decisive military personality of his age. Philip Haythornthwaite examines Napoleon's campaigns in Italy, and the uniforms of his soldiers are illustrated in eight colour plates by Richard Hook.
Osprey's elite series title for the origins of the CIA during World War II (1939-1945). The Office of Strategic Services, the forerunner of the Central Intelligence Agency, was founded in 1942 by William 'Wild Bill' Donovan under the direction of President Roosevelt, who realized the need to improve intelligence during wartime. A rigorous recruitment process enlisted agents from both the armed services and civilians to produce operational groups specializing in different foreign areas including Italy, Norway, Yugoslavia and China. At its peak in 1944, the number of men and women working in the service totaled nearly 13,500.This intriguing story of the origins and development of the American espionage forces covers all of the different departments involved, with a particular emphasis on the courageous teams operating in the field. The volume is illustrated with many photographs, including images from the film director John Ford who led the OSS Photographic Unit and parachuted into Burma in 1943.
In 1614-15 Osaka Castle was Japan's greatest fortification, measuring approximately 2 miles in length with walls 100 feet high. It was guarded by 100,000 samurai, determined to defend the last of the once-powerful Toyotomi clan. The castle was seemingly impenetrable; however, Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the ruling dynasty, was determined to destroy this remaining threat to the Tokuwaga ruling dynasty. This book explores the bitter struggle of the Summer and Winter campaigns, which eventually saw the last great clash of the samurai and defined the balance of power in Japan for years to come.
Osprey's survey of pirates of the Far East, from 811 to 1639. For many centuries, international relations between Medieval Japan, Korea and China were carried out by means of the 'inseparable trinity' of war, trade and piracy. Much has been written about the first two means of interaction. The third element, which combined the other two in a violent blend of free enterprise, is the subject of this original and exciting book. It is written by Stephen Turnbull, who has visited all three countries in search of the elusive pirates of the Far East.
Poland was the first of the Allied nations to succumb to German aggression in the Second World War, but by the most tortuous of routes her army managed to remain in the field through all five years of bloody fighting. Polish soldiers fought in nearly every major campaign in the European theatre, and their tale is a complicated and tragic one. This richly detailed text by Steven Zaloga relates the story of the Polish Army during the Second World War, from the first wave of Stukas in 1939 to its eventual conclusion.
In 1543 three Portuguese merchants entered a turbulent Japan, bringing with them the first firearms the Japanese had ever seen: simple matchlock muskets called arquebuses. They proved a decisive addition to the Japanese armoury, as for centuries the samurai had fought only with bow, sword and spear. In 1575, during the Battle of Nagashino, one of the greatest original thinkers in the history of samurai, Oda Nobunaga, arranged his arquebusiers in ranks three deep behind a palisade and proceeded, quite literally, to blow his opponent's cavalry to pieces, marking the beginning of a new era in Japanese military history.From the Trade Paperback edition.
A brilliant but little-known operation, the Shimazu clan raid on the independent kingdom of Ryukyu (modern Okinawa) in 1609 is one of the most extraordinary episodes in samurai history and the culmination of centuries of rivalry between the two powers. The defeat of the Shimazu at Sekigahara in 1600, and their need to win favour with the new Shogun, led them to hatch an audacious plot to attack the islands on the Shogun's behalf and bring back the king of Ryukyu as a hostage. Stephen Turnbull gives a blow-by-blow account of the operation, from the daring Shimazu amphibious landing, to their rapid advance overland, and the tactical feigned retreat that saw the Shimazu defeat the Okinawan army and kidnap their king in spectacular fashion. With a detailed background and specially commissioned artwork, the scene is set for a dramatic retelling of this fascinating raid.
This second volume about Japan's samurai commanders covers the generals of the later years of the Age of the Warring States (Sengoku period), a period when only the most able leaders survived. This was a time when the prowess of a commander was measured as much by his strategic and organizational abilities as by his individual fighting skills and he was expected to give as great a show of strength in the council chamber as on the battlefield. This book discusses the lives, battles and wider roles of talented commanders such as Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi - great men who stood out prominently due to their elaborate suits of armour and helmets, their stunning personal heraldry and their great armies.
Constant Spanish guerrilla activity so drained the resources and diverted the attention of the French military that Wellington was able to advance against and overcome a numerically superior enemy. So many French soldiers were being used to counter the guerrillas and the threat that they posed that less than a third of the French army could be tasked with confronting Wellington. This book brings to life, for the first time, the formation, tactics and experiences of the Spanish guerrilla forces that fought Napoleon's army during the Peninsular War (1808-1814). Using much previously unpublished material, it offers a vivid description of the guerrilla and his lifestyle.
Intelligence specialist Leigh Neville identifies, describes and illustrates the Special Operations Forces (SOF) of the US and other Allied (Coalition) forces committed to war in Iraq since 2003, providing a fascinating insight into specific operations, detailing weapons, equipment and experiences in combat. With a surprising amount of recently declassified material from government departments that are yet to be published in the mass media, this is a ground-breaking analysis of the largest mobilization of Special Forces in recent history. With extensive first-hand accounts providing an eyewitness perspective of the fighting on the ground and including information on the US Delta Force, the British SAS, Australian and Canadian special forces as well as CIA and MI6 operational units this book provides a crucial study of their skills and success in Iraq from the Battle of Debecka to storming the safe house of Uday Hussein. In a controversial war that has been plagued by high fatalities and military blunders, this book highlights the successes enjoyed by Special Forces operatives. This book serves as a companion volume to Elite 163: Special Forces Operations: Afghanistan.From the Trade Paperback edition.
By 1400 the long running conflict between the Order of Teutonic Knights and Poland and Lithuania was coming to a head, partly as a result of the Order's meddling in the internal politics of its neighbours. In June 1410 King Wladislaw Jagiello of Poland invaded the Order's territory with a powerful allied army including all the enemies of the Teutonic Knights - Poles, Lithuanians, Russians, Bohemians, Hungarians, Tartars and Cossacks. This book recounts how, when the armies clashed on the wooded, rolling hills near the small village of Tannenberg, the Teutonic Knights suffered a disastrous defeat from which their Order never recovered.
The volunteer army that fought the Mexican dictator Santa Anna from 1835 to 1836 was immortalized in the epic battle of the Alamo. Taking arms initially to fight for the restoration of the liberal Mexican constitution of 1824, the volunteers were eventually fighting for outright Texan independence. This book describes and illustrates the group of men who, despite the diversity of their origins, equipment, weaponry and dress, were united in a common cause that reached its culmination in the victory of San Jacinto. The turbulent decade (1836-46) of Texan independence is also covered, and the little-studied army and navy of the Republic of Texas examined.
The bombardment by Confederate artillery of Fort Sumter on 12 April 1861 was the spark that finally ignited the American Civil War (1861-1865), quickly bringing thousands of eager volunteers for the Union cause. It proved especially easy to raise cavalry, since recruits naively believed that their military duties would be easier than in the infantry. This book investigates all aspects of the life and experiences of a Union trooper, covering enlistment, training, uniforms, weapons, cavalry tactics and the discrepancy between the recruit's view of swashbuckling charges and heroic hand-to-hand combat and the less glorious reality.
The battle which took place on the Little Bighorn river on June 25, 1876 has passed into legend as "Custer's Last Stand". This remarkable book is a unique analysis of the oral and pictorial evidence for the appearance of nearly 30 named Sioux and Cheyenne warriors who were present that day, and for their parts in the battle. The fruit of many years' study by one of today's most internationally respected interpreters and illustrators of Native American material culture, it offers biographical notes and meticulously researched color reconstructions, together with rare photographs and pictographs.