In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries,
the British Army's victories over the French at battles
such as Blenheim in 1704, Minden and Quebec in 1759,
and over the Jacobites at Culloden in 1746, were largely
credited to its infantry's particularly effective and
deadly firepower. For the first time, David Blackmore
has gone back to original drill manuals and other contemporary
sources to discover the reasons behind this.
The book begins by considering
the procedures and practices of soldiers in a given
period and analyses exactly how things were done and,
in turn, why events unfolded as they did. What is revealed
is a specifically British set of tactics which explain
how that superiority was achieved and then maintained
over such a long period.
The findings correct many
of the misconceptions about British infantry firepower
in the age of the musket and linear warfare. This is
a major new contribution to our understanding of an
important period of British military history.