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Osprey Men-at-Arms 130 : Wellington's Heavy Cavalry

In November 1807 the French marched through Spain into Portugal, and the bloody and protracted Peninsular War broke out. During the ensuing seven-year struggle British armies, first under Sir John Moore and Sir Arthur Wellesley and later under the latter in his new style as the Duke of Wellington, fought the French and their allies from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pyrenes, and beyond. This campaign was to be the major proving ground for the majority of British cavalry regiments, until the Napoleonic Wars terminated in the climax of the Belgian Campaign of June 1815. Wellington considered the British cavalry to be technically inferior to the French, although paradoxically he also said that one British squadron would be a match for two of the enemy. His main concern was that although the British cavalry lacked neither courage nor dash, they lacked discipline, in that they invariably failed to rally and re-form once they had charged home. At Waterloo, although the cavalry generally performed superbly well, the endemic faults which Wellington had already identified were repeated more than once, resulting in the decimation of several fine regiments. Bryan Fosten explores the history, organisation and uniforms of Wellington's Heavy Cavalry, with numerous illustrations and eight full page colour plates by the author himself.

    Contents
  • Introduction
  • Establishments
  • Duties; Equipment and Miscellanea
  • Mounts
  • Cavalry Tactics
  • The Volunteer Cavalry
  • Uniforms
  • The Plates

 

Osprey Men-at-Arms


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