The formation which became the Somerset Light Infantry is one of the oldest units in the British Army. It was raised in 1685 by the Earl of Huntingdon, who, as a Catholic, speedily lost his command in the 1688 Glorious Revolution, when the regiment deserted James II en masse for the Protestant cause of William of Orange. The following yhear it was present at the disastrous Battle of Kiliecrankie when Jacobite Highlanders routed a roce oif English troops and Protestant lowlanders. The regiment fought for William in Ireland as well as Scotland, taking part in the Battle of the Boyne and besieging Cork and Kinsale. In the War of the Spanish Succession, the regiment fought in Flanders and Spain, was besieged in Barcelona and garrisoned Gibraltar. In the War of the Austrian Succession it helped defeat the French at Dettingen in 1743, the last time an English monarch (George II) led his troops in battle. Defeated by Marshal Saxe’s French forces at Fontenoy in 1745, the regiment returned to Scotland later that year to put down Prince Charles Edward Stuart’s Jacobite revolt, fighting in the battles of Falkirk and Culloden. Stationed in the West Indies duiring the Seven Years War, the regiment took part in Sir John Moore’s retreat to Colrunna, and helped expel the French from Egypt in 1801. It helped to capture the islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique from France in 1809 and 1810, and fought in the 1812 War with the United States. Reformed as a Corps, the unit took part in the disastrous First Afghan War., fighting at Ghazni, Jalalabad and Kabul and later helped besiege Sebastopol in the Crimean War. The Indian Mutiny surprised the SLI at its base in Gibraltar from where itn was repaidly sent to India. In the last half of the 19th century, the regiment saw colonial service in far-flung parts of the Empire, from Mauritius to Cape Colony. It helped defeat the Zulus at Ulundi in 1879. The last in its long list of battle honours in this volume is the Boer War in which it fought in the bloody fiasco oif Spion Kop and helped relive Ladysmith. There are five pages of colour plates, 17 b& w pictures, seventeen appendices and 22 maps.
HISTORY OF THE SOMERSET LIGHT INFANTRY (PRINCE ALBERT’S): 1685-1914
Battle-packed history of one of the oldest regiments in the British Army, the Somerset Light Infantry, from its formation in 1685 to the Boer War.