“PEOPLE’S WAR” IN FRANCE 1870-71

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A detailed examination of the campaign which terminated with the German reoccupation of Orleans. It took the Germans many years to realise the real significance of the stout fight which, after the capture or annihilation of practically the whole of the French Army, the people of France were able to maintain during a severe winter. The German conquest of France and the unification of Germany upset the European balance of power that had existed since the Congress of Vienna in 1815. French determination to regain Alsace-Lorraine and fear of another Franco-German war, along with British apprehension about the balance of power, became factors in the causes of World War I. This study of the Franco-Prussian War formed part of the ‘Pall Mall Military Series’ devised for British Army officers who wished to make a serious study of their profession. Colonel Hale’s argument as to the value of a people’s army as auxiliary and supplemental to a fully trained Regular Army looks particularly interesting in the light of the Great War’s recruitment, conscription and Pals Battalions.