The Iron Duke
Publication Year: 2007
Although Waterloo is the battle most associated with Wellington, his career was much wider. He gained his first military experience in the Netherlands in 1793-94 in an unsuccessful campaign that taught him, as he said, how not to do it. From there he went to India, where he conducted a number of successful campaigns and honed his military skills until he became Britain's leading general. With great strategic foresight and as master not only of the battlefield but also of organization and logistics, he helped expel the French from Spain and Portugal during the Peninsular War, which materially weakened Napoleon's strategic position and led to his downfall in 1814. After Napoleon returned from exile in 1815, Wellington was a principal leader of the coalition forces at Waterloo. In subsequent years, Wellington exerted a considerable influence on British politics, serving as prime minister and in later life as a trusted elder statesman. Upon his death, he was widely regarded as the greatest Briton of his generation and undisputedly one of the greatest British soldiers.
The Duke of Wellington has been the subject of many biographies over the years but none as comprehensive yet concise as this latest addition to Potomac's Military Profiles series.
Published by: University of Nebraska Press
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On the morning of June 18, 1815, the Emperor Napoleon consideredthe enemy army that lay a short distance to the north of his own forces.With the confidence that had sustained him for some two decades ofconflict, he declared to his companions that his opponent was a badgeneral in command of bad troops, and that the day?s battle would be a...
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Chapter 1 “How Not to Do It”: A Military Apprenticeship
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I AM THINKING of the French that I am going to fight. I have notseen them since the campaign in Flanders, when they were capitalsoldiers, and a dozen years of victory under Buonaparte [sic] musthave made them better still. They have besides, it seems, a new sys-the armies of Europe . . . they may overwhelm me, but I don?t think...
Chapter 2 Sepoy General
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...arrived at Calcutta in February 1797 British rule covered only aportion of the subcontinent. Since the British presence originatedfrom commercial motives, a mercantile organization, the HonourableEast India Company, represented most of the British interest. Muchmore than just a trading concern, it assumed the rights of virtually a...
Chapter 3 Home, Denmark, and Portugal
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...hanced by his seven years in India. He returned home with a reputa-tion, although not one as marked as his military achievements mighthave justified; until the middle of the nineteenth century, command-as highly as those who had forged a reputation in Europe. He re-turned to a nation still at war with France, now represented by Na-...
Chapter 4 Peninsula: The Defensive Phase
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...mined to secure his brother?s place on the throne of Spain, Napo-leon had arrived there in person to crush Spanish resistance and hadrouted the Spanish armies that had opposed him. Sir John Moore ledmost of the British forces in Portugal in support of the Spanish buthad to abandon his advance into Spain after Madrid surrendered to...
Chapter 5 Wellington: The Man and the General
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...traits and abilities that defined Arthur Wellesley both as an indi-vidual and as a military commander. An early appreciation was pub-Lord Wellington is about four and forty years of age, rather tall andthin, of a fine countenance and piercing eye. He rises every morn-ing at three o?clock, breakfasts at four, and always, before day-light,...
Chapter 6 Peninsula: The Offensive Phase
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French, Wellington prepared to take the offensive for the campaign-ing year of 1812. In his way stood the great border fortresses ofif his army were to enter Spain, but the military authorities atecute sieges, notably in an entirely inadequate force of engineers.The historian William Napier, who saw the problem firsthand, re-...
Chapter 7 The Hundred Days
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...was established as his country?s greatest soldier for some generations,1814, he was elevated to the highest rank of the peerage and becamehis family background had been the cause of some dissent: for ex-don voted to present him with a sword worth 200 guineas, severalbeen sufficiently paid,? and similar feelings had been voiced by mem-...
Chapter 8 The Statesman
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...?I have never fought such a battle, and I trust I shall never fightanother one.?1 This hope, expressed more than once, was to be ful-filled: his battlefield career ended on the evening of June 18, 1815.For that he can have had no regrets; he seems to have been seriouslyaffected by the carnage in which he had played so crucial a role....
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About the Author
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Philip Haythornthwaite was born in Lancashire, England, the countyin which he still lives. Fascinated by all aspects of history from an earlyage, he began to write about military history soon after completing hiseducation while pursuing a career in business. He is the author of manybooks, articles, and papers and has a wide knowledge of military subjects...
Page Count: 160
Publication Year: 2007