Military history

This Seat of Mars: War and the British Isles, 1485-1746

This Seat of Mars: War and the British Isles, 1485-1746

Shakespeare was not exaggerating when he defined being a soldier as one of the seven ages of man. Over the early modern period, many millions of young men from the four corners of the present United Kingdom went to war, often―and most bloodily―against each other. The almost continuous fighting on land and sea for the two and one-half centuries between Bosworth and Culloden decimated lives, but created the British state and forged the nation as the world's predominant power.

In this innovative and moving book, Charles Carlton explores the glorious and terrible impact of war at the national and individual levels. Chapters alternate, providing a robust military and political narrative interlaced with accounts illuminating the personal experience of war, from recruitment to the end of battle in discharge or death. Carlton expertly charts the remarkable military developments over the period, as well as war's enduring corollaries―camaraderie, courage, fear, and grief―to give a powerful account of the profound effect of war on the British Isles and its peoples.

Introduction: This Seat of Mars

Chapter 1. Early Tudor Warfare, 1485–1558

Chapter 2. Give Me Spirit: Joining and Training

Chapter 3. This Happy Breed of Men: Elizabethan Warfare, 1558–1603

Chapter 4. Why Men Fought

Chapter 5. Those Were Golden Days: Early Stuart Warfare, 1603–1639

Chapter 6. Low Intensity Combat: Campaigning

Chapter 7. All Diseas'd: Civil Wars and Commonwealth: Events, 1638–1660

Chapter 8. Talk You of Killing: Civil Wars and Commonwealth: Impact, 1638–1660

Chapter 9. High Intensity Combat: Battles and Sieges

Chapter 10. Restoration to Glorious Revolution, 1660–1688

Chapter 11. The Peril of the Waters: War at Sea

Chapter 12. Let Slip the Dogs of War: After the Glorious Revolution: 1688–1746

Chapter 13. The Hurlyburly's Done: The Aftermath of Combat

Conclusion: The Hand of War


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