The Art Of Warfare In Western Europe During The Middle Ages From The Eighth Century
Warfare is a major feature of the history of the middle ages, but its study has often been the province of amateurs only recently have the technical details of warfare and its organisation been subject to proper scholarly investigation. Professor Verbruggen’s major work, outstanding in its field, applies rigorous standards in analysing often very obscure surviving evidence, and reaches conclusions very different from earlier generations of military historians. He begins by analysing the sources for our knowledge of the military history of the period, assessing their reliability: some chroniclers exaggerate, others are careful observers or have access to official records. There follows an examination of the constituent parts of the medieval army, knights and footsoldiers, equipment and terms of service, behaviour on the field, and psychology, before the problematic question of medieval tactics is addressed through analysis of accounts of a series of major battles. Strategy is discussed in the context of these battles: whether to seek battle, fight a defensive war, or attempt a war of conquest. Originally published in Dutch in 1954, now translated and updated. J.F. VERBRUGGEN is a distinguished Belgian military historian of wide experience. Prisoner of war, student, and a member of the resistance movement during the second world war, he subsequently obtained his Ph.D., with greatest distinction, for research into warfare in the middle ages, and remained in the army as a lecturer at the Royal Military School in Brussels until in 1956 he went to the Belgian Congo. He spent twenty years teaching in Africa, retiring as Professor of History, University of Congo, and University of Bujumbura (Burundi) in 1976.