John A. Lynn II

Teoksen Battle: A History Of Combat And Culture tekijä

8+ Works 512 Jäsentä 4 arvostelua

About the Author

John A. Lynn II earned his Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles

Sisältää nimet: John A. Lynn II, John A. Lynn II

Sisältää myös: John A. Lynn (1)

Tekijän teokset

Associated Works

MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Winter 1989 (1988) — Author "Vauban" and "The Siege of Namur" — 27 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Summer 1989 (1989) — Author "The Sans-Culotte Solution" — 15 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Autumn 1992 (1992) — Author "Valmy" — 15 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Spring 1990 (1990) — Author "The Strange Case of the Maiden Soldier of Picardy" — 13 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Summer 1995 (1995) — Author "The Sun King's Star Wars" — 12 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Winter 1991 (1990) — Author "Soldiers on the Rampage" — 11 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Spring 2001 (2001) — Author "The Tapissier de Notre Dame" — 9 kappaletta
MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History — Winter 2003 (2002) — Author "Ideals of Battle in an Age of Elegance" — 9 kappaletta

Merkitty avainsanalla





I don’t usually buy collections of essays, but this one is pretty good. Individual articles cover logistics in the Byzantine empire, Pre-Crusade Europe, naval logistics in the 100 Years War (I learned that the Cinque Ports were granted immunity from customs duties in exchange for providing ships to the King for 15 days a year); 16th Century logistics in the Spanish navy (the single largest annual expenditure for the Spanish galley fleet was ship’s biscuit; because of the large crews of galleys, the Battle of Lepanto involved 160000 sailors, which had to be the greatest number of participants in a naval battle until the 20th century (Jutland? Leyte Gulf?); logistics in the campaigns of Louis XIV (the critical resource was not human food, or ammunition; it was fodder for horses. Armies frequently had to change position, not for maneuvering against the enemy but because they had exhausted local fodder. A wagon team carrying fodder to the front would eat its own load in fodder in three days.); logistics in the American Revolution (the critical resource was not supplies but transport; the road network in the Colonies was primitive and often close enough to the coast for the Royal Navy to interdict; prewar transport had depended heavily on coastal shipping); the Royal Navy in WWI (the RN consumed steel for warship building to the extent that it heavily impacted merchant ship construction, leading to the U-Boat crisis in 1917); the US Army’s experience with motor transport (the Quartermaster Corps wanted to build its own “perfect” trucks; eventually the powers that be insisted the Army use commercially available vehicles); and logistical difficulties in Vietnam.

Each essay is interesting; unfortunately, there’s no uniform theme, or any coverage of non-Western armies (I’d be very interested in how Chinese and Japanese armies handled supply). Still, quite worthwhile for all sorts of little facts.
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setnahkt | Dec 8, 2017 |
I learnt plenty about the functioning of armies -- or rather 'campaign communities', since 'army' gives a wrong impression for the time period. It's an easy read, and as he says, he's a military historian, not a gender studies person. This is evident, but he's well-meaning, and, as advertised, jargon-free. I wasn't aware how large a part the noncombatant community had: essential not just for laundry but in pillage and plunder, which was commonly your only chance of getting paid. Women often handled the goods and cashed them in, which was not too different from civilian life. It's interesting to look at women as present, as participants, in the rough stuff as places were sacked. He tries to deduce their attitudes, for instance, to the rape of the enemy.

The modernisation of armies reduced the need for women's support services. Also, they began to get paid.

Early modern armies were more interesting places than I knew about. His focus is on the ordinary functioning of them, not the extraordinary stories of women who disguised themselves as men. Although, his coverage of the cultural fad that these were in the 17th century, was interesting too.

The women thought chic to dress in cast-off military coats, just like we used to shop at the army disposals store. In which, they did a lot of digging.
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Jakujin | Dec 5, 2014 |
My, but weren't there a lot of battles in Flanders during this period!

Professor Lynn, who is a great authority on military activities in early modern Europe, here provides a basic narrative framework for the five significant conflicts that took place under the full authority of the Sun King. Because of the complexity of the conflicts, and the seemingly never-ending series of engagements along the Rhine River and in the Spanish Netherands, the result is a book that sometimes seems like "one damn battle after another." But Lynn does provide some good analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of Louis XIV's strategy, making it clear that he sought to maximalize France's position within the established European order; unlike Napoleon, he did not seek to create an entire new world of nations and peoples.

This Osprey book is exceptionally well illustrated. The pictures are indeed worth thousands of words. However, the maps, while very attractive, are oddly labeled and are really not all that helpful.
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yooperprof | Jun 16, 2014 |
Magnificent book by John Lynn. Gives back full glory to a period afwully neglected in present history teaching. The author makes a smooth combination of traditional chronological and "horizontal" analysis.

The wars of Louis XIV being divided in two main categories (Wars of Glory Wars of Defence for France's borders), Lynn starts an apology of the Sun King. According to him, Louis XIV didn't actually go off on a quest for extra territory, from 1684 on he considers the natural borders of France to be achieved. Louis' main mistake being the revocation of the Nantes Edict (1685) and the chase of Protestants within and outside France (e.g. the unnecessary invasion in Savoy).

A point I very much appreciated, was the thorough but necessary analysis of siege rather than battle warfare and the economic necessity for France's armies to keep themselves "fed" on enemy territory. In contrast to the Napoleonic wars (army collects bounty as a reward for quick victory, but is able to move on), foraging of installing tribute on another's subjects was a permanent occupation of Louis' generals. This is also the main reason why French (and other) generals do not exploit successes in the field. Ramillies (victory won by Marlborough in may 1706) proved to be extremely successful, the duke being able to recover all of the Southern Netherlands. But it remains a rare example.

Whoever visits Blenheim Palace and notices the Tapestries recalling Marlborough's glorious deeds in the Netherlands, cannot but ask himself questions at the exposure of the Siege of Bouchain or Lille. The only answer is the nature of 17th century warfare itself. Even Turenne en Condé were already tied to what Geoffrey Parker calls "fortress warfare": major struggles around strongholds (e.g. on the Vauban précarre separating Paris from the Spanish Netherlands: Le Quesnoy, Landrecies, Arras, Bouchain, Lille, Ypres, Namur, Mons...) took much more time and were more "decisive" than battle in itself was.

A third major asset this book provides, is the analysis of naval activities under Louis XIV. Integrating the "guerre d'escadre vs. guerre de course"-controversy, Lynn accurately points to Louis en Louvois' coordinated approach of land and sea warfare, in order to protect France's coastline .

The Wars of Louis XIV is thé essential book for anyone interested in a synthetical, but thorough understanding of political and military problems of "the Grand Siècle".
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fdhondt | Jul 29, 2007 |



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