At the Point of the Bayonet
The Peninsular War Battles of Arroyomolinos and Almaraz 1811-1812
Series : From Reason to Revolution 1721-1815 #58
Author : Robert Griffith
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General - Pages : 204 | Images : 58 b/w photos & illustrations, 8pp colour plates, 9 b/w maps
Paperback - Date of Publication : April 2021 | Size : 248mm x 180mm | ISBN : 9781913336523 | Helion Book Code : HEL1278
Rowland Hill was one of the Duke of Wellington’s most trusted subordinates, known for caring deeply for the welfare of his men, but the battles of Arroyomolinos (1811) and Almaraz (1812) show that he was far more than just ‘Daddy Hill’ and a safe pair of hands. He was also a general of considerable skill and daring. At Arroyomolinos he led his troops for days through appalling weather to out-manoeuvre and then decimate an entire French division in a perfectly conceived surprise attack. At Almaraz he advanced far from allied lines to capture and then destroy a vital French bridge, overcoming considerable logistical challenges and substantial defences, and paving the way for Wellington’s victory at Salamanca.
For both actions Hill used the same two British infantry brigades, as well as Portuguese and Spanish units. The relatively small numbers of units involved has enabled the author to give greater focus on the individual regiments and the men who served in them than is often the case with larger battles. He uses memoirs, previously unpublished letters, and official returns and reports to paint a very detailed picture of two small but important battles of the Peninsular War and the men that fought them.