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Essential Agony

The Battle Of Dunbar 1650

Series : Century of the Soldier 1618-1721 #45

Author : Arran Johnston

Essential Agony : The Battle Of Dunbar 1650


General - Pages : 228 | Images : 59 b/w photos/ills, 12 maps, 8pp colour plates

Paperback - Date of Publication : September 2019 | Size : 248mm x 180mm | ISBN : 9781912866588 | Helion Book Code : HEL1147

On 3 September 1650, two former allies fought a bitter clash of arms in the rain-soaked fields around the quiet seaside town of Dunbar. For one, it was a signal mercy which cemented his reputation and paved the way for political as well as military supremacy. For the other, it meant defeat, occupation, and the end of a cause. In England, Dunbar is remembered as one of Cromwell’s most brilliant victories. In Scotland, as an avoidable tragedy caused by the placement of blind faith over sound judgement. And for those whose ancestors suffered in its terrible aftermath, it is a story of both sorrow and survival. This new analysis of the Battle of Dunbar explores the battlefield and its events in close detail, using the author’s intimate knowledge of the landscape. From the high politics to the individual experience, Arran Johnston brings the story of the Dunbar campaign vividly to life and sets its significance within the context of both the seventeenth century and our own times.


"Wargamers wishing to recreate the campaign and battle of Dunbar will benefit greatly from reading this carefully researched and detailed account." Miniature Wargames


"Both historians and students will find the book valuable. Johnston’s attention to how geography impacted the campaign will provide insights to the former. The latter will benefit from a well-written, sometimes dramatically engaging work that will carry them through the often-neglected military operations of the 1648–51 period in Great Britain." Seventeenth-Century News


".....a thorough and readable analysis of the campaign by someone
who knows it and the battlefield very well." Casemate Fortress Study Group


"Johnston's meticulous account of the campaign reflects his intimate knowledge of the countryside and its roads. It gives the reader a vivid sense of just how seventeenth-century armies moved and provisioned themselves on campaign. The granular description of Leslie's failure at the Battle of Dunbar is most welcome, because his—and his army's—performance had to that point been commendable. The author also explains the role of government representatives who questioned and interfered with Leslie's decisions and even his command structure. "Essential Agony" should now be mandatory reading for anyone interested in seventeenth-century warfare and the careers of Oliver Cromwell and David Leslie." Mitchigan War Studies Review

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