A History of the British Cavalry 1816-1919, by The Marquess of Anglesey, Volume 1: 1816-1850

A History of the British Cavalry 1816-1919, by The Marquess of Anglesey, Volume 1: 1816-1850

Published by Leo Cooper in 1998, 336 pages. Hardback with Dust Jacket (N8068)

Brand New Book

From the front inside fly leaf: To this day the Cavalry Regiments of the British Army retain much of the panache and the social prestige which they acquired during the nineteenth century. Then gorgeously attired in wildly impractical splendour, they seem to our eyes fitted more for the stage of the Viennese Opera than for the battlefields of the Empire. But their achievements, as Lord Anglesey shows, proved otherwise. Now, equipped with tanks and armoured cars and dressed in drab overalls, they play an equally vital role in an army which in the last sixty years has changed out of all recognition from that of which Lord Anglesey treats. But the roots remain and the traditions survive.

This is the first of eight volumes by which Lord Anglesey fills a gap, long recognized by military historians, in providing a chronicle of the origins, the function, the development and the employment of the mounted arm up to the end of the First World War. It is essentially a work of social as well as of military history and throughout Lord Anglesey concerns himself as much with the living conditions and social position of both officers and other ranks as with their military employment. He has had recourse to a very wide variety of hitherto unpublished letters and documents of cavalrymen of all ranks and the resulting work has established him for all time as the Fortescue of the mounted soldier.

The first volume, after a prologue in which the origins and early development of mounted warfare are discussed, covers the period from 1816 to 1850. During those years the cavalry were employed in action chiefly in India, which therefore provides the setting for much of this volume.