The Sourcebook of the Sikh Wars is the first comprehensive work dealing with the Anglo-Sikh Wars fought in India between 1845 and 1849. The book provides a brief political background of the conflict, a concise account of both Sikh Wars, the actions that led to them, and a detailed description of the armies involved.
Now, for the first time ever, an exhaustive account of the formation and rise of the Sikh Khalsa has been written, where every single battalion, cavalry regiment and artillery derah, along with the infamous Ghorchurra regiments, is traced from its initial formation to final engagement in battle. From an original band of knights errant and freebooters to the first experimental battalions and finally as the famed ‘brigades’ created by former Napoleonic army officers, all Sikh formations and their commanding officers are tracked on an annual basis.
The Anglo-Indian army is also well covered. Drawing from original and often long ignored documents, detailed Orders of Battle are presented for the very first time, correcting serious errors that have crept into almost every account since the first battlefield reports were written. Included in these documents are the full name, rank and unit affiliation not only of unit commanders, but army and personal staff and foreign observers.
While the Orders of Battle are the heart and soul of the work, the book also includes an abundance of new material, such as ‘Daily March and Event’ logs for each major formation during the wars, tracing exactly where an army or column was on a given day. An account of the superlative Sikh artillery, along with a rare contemporary pamphlet written by a senior officer defending his actions at a crucial battle, is included. Also featured are several sidebars dealing with unit march rates, how to feed a column, how to deal with an incompetent commander and much more. Finally, the book contains a detailed bibliography, and the first comprehensive glossary on the subject.
The Sourcebook of the Sikh Wars is the first ever all-encompassing study of the conflict between the Sikh Khalsa and the British East India Company and will be a must have on the bookshelf of any student of India’s colonial era and wars.
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