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History Of The War In France And Belgium In 1815. 3rd Edition
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When Captain Siborne died in 1849, it is unlikely that he was aware of the enduring historical legacy that he was to leave behind. His History of the War in France and Belgium in 1815 has become the most well known English history of the famous campaign and despite being written over 150 years ago is still in print, still eminently readable and remarkably accurate. The book was the result of his life's work and passionate dedication to the "Waterloo Model" which depicts a stage of the battle in tremendous detail.
The accuracy of the book is accounted for by four tremendously important points; Firstly, Siborne was engaged by the British military establishment to produce a model of the battle of Waterloo, which he did with scrupulous accuracy including painstaking research on the battle ground and environs including surveys of the ground. Secondly, Siborne was a noted topographical engineer who wrote a number of treatises and one of the standard works of the time enabling his appreciation of the battle to be precise and avoid fault of many histories written merely from maps (some produced years afterward)of the area. Thirdly, he undertook what was a the time a ground-breaking "questionnaire" of the surviving officers of the British, King's German Legion, Hanoverian units involved, to piece together the events of the day. These letters were published in part by Siborne's son much later. Fourthly he expanded his search for eye-witness testimony to both the Prussian and French army staffs, and although rebuffed by the French, who were understandably tender about the loss of the battle and their Emperor with it, his enquiries were fruitful amongst the Prussian command who supplied a priceless counterbalance to the sometimes jingoistic British accounts.
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Pickle Partners Publishing
March 22, 2011
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