The anatomy of victory: battle tactics 1689-1763 by Brent Nosworthy

By Brent Nosworthy

The years 1689-1763 have been years of transition within the army technological know-how. Many books were written in regards to the battles of that interval, yet few inform how the warriors really fought these battles utilizing the guns to hand. This booklet does. Painstakingly researched, and utilizing genuine battles for representation, it tells the reader the "how" and "why" concerning the strategies utilized by infantry, cavalry and artillery.
Well written, it presents a priceless source to historians and background fanatics of that in the past age.

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The “point” influenced chivalry to the extent that by 1500, many swords were simply long steel skewers with very sharp ends. The cavalry debate between the edge and point—to slice or to stab—was not concluded until the turn of the twentieth century. Tactics frustrated doctrine and the operational art. Most chivalry, particularly French cavalry, became obsessed with the assault (a precursor to the Attaque à outrance) and were too impulsive to adhere to disciplined doctrine. The horse’s role in all of this was to deliver the goods and then join in as a butting, biting, and kicking complement to the melee.

Genghis Khan imposed force unity by breaking up ethnic or tribal affilia­ tions and mixing his troops into teamlike subunits. The Mongols were intuitively metric, and their army was organized in multiples of 10: initial family-like groupings of 10 archers, troops, then 100 warrior squadrons (jaghun), 1,000 strong regiments (mingghun), and 10,000 man brigades (tjumen). Transfers between units were not permitted, and discipline was ruthless and uncompromising. Essentially a nomadic nation on horseback, the Khan’s cavalry was used to harsh winters and long-distance travel.

Three or four banners would constitute a “battle,” which was the standard tactical unit of chivalry. The average strength was about 60 warhorses. Individual knights were dubbed a lance garnie (French: “garnished, all dressed”) and brought their entourage to battle. A “lance” comprised the fully armed knight and included his squire and two horse archers. Well-heeled knights brought pages, men at arms, grooms, and supplementary warhorses to be used as fresh replacements, much like a polo match. The charge of cavalry was deafening and expeditious.

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