Monday, 10 December 2018

"The Most Heavy Stroke". The Battle of Roundway Down 1643



I am very fortunate to be able to review the odd book from Helion Publishing. Well, the wonderful Charles sent me another offering just over a week ago. Now, I am not an expert on the English Civil Wars and would never profess to be. I am aware of the overall series of events and the "why's and wherefore's", and have a passing interest based on quite a few years of re-enacting in my late teens and most of my twenties back in the olden days (most long forgotten perhaps due to excess pints of beer). It is unarguably an interesting and keynote period of our history but doesn't set my pants on fire. I've never even owned an ECW army! So this is my view; a lay persons view.

So here we go. Yes, there have been many books written about the Civil Wars and about Roundway Down in particular. Helion are to be commended on publishing this masterpiece by Dr Chris Scott. The book provides an almost clinical examination of the different phases of the campaign and the battle itself, which is described in substantial detail. Chapters on the troops and personalities involved together with detailed orders of battle make this a 'must get' book for anyone interested in the subject. The book is filled with a large number of black and white photos, maps and diagrams, as well as numerous contemporary illustrations. In addition there are several pages of original colour artwork by the talented Mark Allen. 

Like I said at the start, before I read this book I knew next to nothing about the events leading up to the battle, let alone battle itself, other 'than the good/bad guys won. While I wouldn't care to select the campaign as my chosen topic in BBCs Mastermind I do feel that I have enriched my understanding of the subject! I enjoyed it. What more can be said?

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