This is a masterly and concise reinterpretation of one of the seminal events in modern history, by one of the world's foremost military historians. The battle on Sunday 18th June 1815, near Waterloo, Belgium was to be Napoleon's greatest triumph - but it ended in one of the greatest military upsets of all time. Waterloo became a legend overnight and remains one of the most argued-over battles in history. Lord Wellington immortally dubbed it 'the nearest-run thing you ever saw in your life', but the British victory became iconic, a triumph of endurance that ensured a 19th century world in which Britain played the key role; it was also a defining moment for the French, bringing Napoleon I's reign to an end and closing the second Hundred Years' War. Alongside the great drama and powerful characters, Jeremy Black gives readers a fascinating look at where this battle belongs in the larger story of the tectonic power shifts in Europe, and the story of military modernisation. The result is a revelatory view of Waterloo's place in the broader historical arc. Black sets this battle in the context of warfare in the period, and not only that of Napoleonic Europe. He also uses Waterloo to explore the changing nature of war, the rise and fall of Napoleon's empire, and the influence of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars on the 19th century. Drawing on all the latest scholarship, Jeremy Black brings this thrilling story - and the world in which it is set - vividly to life.
Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
Number of pages: 240
Dimensions: 216 x 138 x 30 mm
'Jeremy Black ought to be a National Treasure ... he deserves far more public recognition. The sheer quality of his output ought to have marked him out as one of our great historians.' -- Andrew Roberts
'A splendidly lucid account that places the Battle of Waterloo squarely in its proper historical context.' -- Andrew Roberts
'This is Jeremy Black at his best. Well researched and clearly written, the book makes a convincing case for both Waterloo as a major victory against tyranny and the remilitarization of military history by restoring the study of combat.' -- Dennis Showalter
'This book is a wonderful example of a micro-history of one battle, re-contextualised as a decisive battle in the history of Europe but also, and more crucially, as a landmark in the history of warfare.' -- Journal of Military History