SPECIAL CAMPAIGN SERIES: 1859 MAGENTA AND SOLFERINO

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Part of the acclaimed “Special Campaign” series of works intended for serious professional students of military history each volume is interspersed with strategical and tactical comments and illustrated by numerous sketches.
The engagement between France and Austria, during the second war of Italian independence, on the 4th of June 1859 at Magenta, and the decisive engagement in that war the Battle of Solferino on the 24 June 1859 were crucial steps in Italian unification.
Solferino interestingly was the last major battle in world history where all the armies were under the personal command of their monarchs, approximately 300,000 soldiers fought in the important battle, the largest since the Battle of Leipzig in 1813. There were about 130,000 Austrian troops and a combined total of 140,000 French and allied Piedmontese troops. After the battle, the Austrian Emperor refrained from further direct command of the army.
The war’s geopolitical context was the nationalist struggle to unify Italy, which had long been divided among France, Austria, Spain and numerous independent Italian states.