A masterpiece of military history, this is the concise biography of arguably England’s greatest General by arguably Britain’s greatest military historian. Fortescue’s Marlborough is less of a hagiography than the huge two volume life by Marlborough’s great descandent, Winston Churchill, but is a marvellous read for all that. Briskly taking in the story of the political machinations in Britain which often bedevilled the Duke’s brilliance in battle, Fortescue’s focus is firmly on the field of conflict. His accounts of the Duke’s four great victories – Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde and Malplaquet – as well as his sieges and lesser actions, is magnificent. A master of military history writing about a master of the art of war itself – this book, like Marlborough himself, cannot be beaten.
Sir John Fortescue
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2010 N&M Press reprint (original pub 1934). SB. 175pp + 7 Maps
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