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The King's Army

The King's Army
Warfare, Soldiers and Society during the Wars of Religion in France, 1562–76


Part of Cambridge Studies in Early Modern History

  • Date Published: July 2002
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521525138

£ 45.99

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About the Authors
  • Historians have long ignored the military aspect of the wars of religion which raged in France during the late sixteenth century, dismissing the conflicts as aimless or hopelessly confused. In contrast, this meticulously researched analysis of the royal army and its operations during the early civil wars brings warfare back to the centre of the picture. James B. Wood explains the reasons for the initial failure of the monarchy to defeat the Huguenots, and examines how that failure prolonged the conflict. He argues that the nature and outcome of the civil wars can only be explained by the fusion of religious rebellion and incomplete military revolution. This study makes an important contribution to the history of military forces, warfare and society, and will be of great interest to those engaged in the debate over the 'Military Revolution' in early modern Europe.

    • Meticulously researched analysis of armies in the sixteenth century
    • Corrects the previous dismissal of the wars of religion as aimless and confused
    • Relates the study of warfare to religion and society
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Wood's examination of the military experience of both the soldiers and the civilians of France is vivid, his detail on the country's military institutions and the course of the war meticulous. This is the best - and best illustrated - book on early modern military history to appear for many years.' English Historical Review

    ' … this lucidly written monograph … has made a major contribution to the historical study of the French Wars of Religion and this book is one that every student of the period must read'. The Huguenot Society

    'James Wood's splendid study … marks a major advance in our understanding of this deeply confused period. This is a book packed with detail, based on extensive primary research, whose separate sections are brilliantly combined to advance a general argument.' Historical Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2002
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521525138
    • length: 368 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.594kg
    • contains: 9 b/w illus. 13 maps 42 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: Rumors of war
    1. The campaigns of the army, 1562–76
    2. The camp and the army of the King
    3. The army in the field
    4. 'The footmen of the King'
    5. The gendarmes
    6. The artillery train
    7. In search of a battle: Dreux, 1562
    8. The defence of Chartres, 1567–68
    9. A host of strangers: the army's presence
    10. The destruction of the army: the siege of La Rochelle, 1573
    11. Paying for war
    Conclusion: the limits to action.

  • Author

    James B. Wood, Williams College, Massachusetts

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