In a dramatic and spirited narrative reflecting the dash and elan of his subject, Digby Smith brings to life some of the most exciting and illustrative examples of cavalry in action in the Napoleonic Wars. Cavalry was the queen of the Napoleonic battlefield. Surging squadrons of dragoons, dashing hussars or the awesome might of heavy cuirassiers often snatched victory from the jaws of defeat and decided the fate of kingdoms. Smith examines how battles could be decided by the skilful use of cavalry. He outlines the development of the mounted arm – describing the various types of cavalry unit, their roles and abilities – and then sets out to describe how cavalry could turn the tide of battle. By examining such key clashes as Marengo, Eylau, Albuera, the crossing of the Beresina and Waterloo, Charge! reveals how cavalry could be deployed in an offensive and defensive capacity, and how an effective and well-timed cavalry charge could overcome almost any obstacle. The scenarios have been carefully selected to reveal how leadership, training, weather, terrain and the condition of the horses could affect the success of a charge. Replete with eyewitness accounts and tales of outstanding courage, Charge! is a dramatic read as well as a fascinating insight into the role and performance of cavalry on the Napoleonic field of battle.
Napoleonic Library CHARGE! Great Cavalry Charges of the Napoleonic Wars
Conjuring up all the shock and drama of a classic cavalry charge, Digby Smith’s spirited account of the key role played by mounted troops in Napoleonic warfare is a must read for Napoleonic buffs. Analyses key battles – from Marengo to Waterloo – in which the cavalry’s role was crucial and shows how and why they won.
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