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The Indian Mutiny 1857-58 (Essential Histories) Paperback – May 22, 2007


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The Indian Mutiny 1857-58 (Essential Histories) + The Anglo-Afghan Wars 1839-1919 (Essential Histories) + The Boer War 1899-1902 (Essential Histories)
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Product Details

  • Series: Essential Histories (Book 68)
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (May 22, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846032091
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846032097
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 6.8 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #302,408 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for the Essential Histories series: "an excellent series . . . These books are always beautifully illustrated with contemporary pieces and wonderful maps . . . it's a book you won't put down easily if you are interested in the period." Military Modelcraft

About the Author

Gregory Fremont-Barnes holds a doctorate in Modern History from Oxford University. He is the author of The French Revolutionary Wars, The Peninsular War, The Fall of the French Empire,1813-1815 and The Boer War, 1899-1902. He is currently editing a four-volume Encyclopedia of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars and co-editing a five-volume Encyclopedia of the American Revolutionary War. The author lives in Oxford, UK.

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Mike Dillemuth on October 31, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is definitely one of the better books in the Essential Histories series. It is succinct and very well written. The book follows the usual Essential Histories organization of a chronology, the origins of the conflict, the fighting, etc. There are additional chapters on the Raj and why the mutiny failed. These additional chapters not only provide informative analysis, they also act as a nice way to conclude the book.

Toward the front, there is a graphic map that lists all the major landmarks and battles. This map is an easy reference for the reader. In addition, the book contains a wide assortment of both black and white and color paintings. The drawings are conveniently placed next to the text, which describes that specific event. Although common sense would dictate that photos are placed next to the relevant text, that is not always the case. In any event, this book got it right.

A commonly held belief is that the mutiny was caused by a rumor that the new Enfield cartridges were covered in pig grease. The author, Mr. Fremont Barnes, tells the rest of the story. He goes on to describe underlying causes such as the loss of power by Indian rulers, new enlistment contracts that took away pensions for the sepoys, and a lack of bonding (a.k.a.: leadership) between the British officers and their native troops.

The "Fighting" chapter focuses on the three major conflicts, the siege of Delhi, the massacres at Cawnpore, and the relief of Lucknow. The author included clean tactical maps of these three operational areas. Thus, the reader should have no difficulty in understanding the locations and movements of the opposing forces.

The book also contains two "Portrait" chapters.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on July 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
Gregory Foremont-Barnes' THE INDIAN MUTINY 1857-58 adds to the 'Essential Histories' multi-volume history of war which focuses on war as seen from political, cultural and individual perspectives alike. In the mid-19th century India was the focus of Britain's international and commercial power - its most important colony - but in 1857 there was open rebellion. First-hand source material and the latest research explains why the armies rose up against Britain, strategies used on both sides, and more.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Robert A. Lynn on April 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
THE INDIAN MUTINY, 1857-58
GREGORY FREMONT-BARNES
OSPREY PUBLISHING, 2007
QUALITY SOFTCOVER, $14.95, 96 PAGES, MAPS, ILLUSTRATIONS, CHRONOLOGY

In the mid-19th Century, India was the focus of Britain's international prestige and commercial power-the most important colony in an empire which extended to every continent on the globe and protected by the seemingly dependable native armies of the East India Company. When, however, in 1857 discontent exploded into open rebellion, Britain was obliged to field its larhgest army in forty years to defend its "jewel in the crown". The Indian Mutiny of 1857-1858 had diverse political, economic, military, religious, and social causes.

The sepoys (the native Indian soldiers) had their own list of grievances against Company rule-mainly caused by the ethnic gulf between the British officers and their Indian troops. In the early years of Company rule, the British tolerated and even encouraged the caste privileges and customs within the Bengal Army, which recruited its regular soldiers almost exclusively amongst the landowning Bhumihar Brahmins and Rajputs of the Ganges Valley. By the time that these customs and privileges came to be threatened by modernizing regimes in Calcutta from the 1840s onward, the sepoys had become accustomed to a very high ritual status and therefore were extremely sensitive to suggestions that their caste might become polluted. The sepoys also gradually became dissatisfied with various other aspects of army life. Their pay was relatively low and after Awadh and the Punjab were annexed, the soldiers no longer received extra pay (batta or bhatta) for service there, because they were no longer considered "foreign missions.
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By Pigeon on February 6, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book does not go into the complexities of the causes of the uprising, however, it describes the key engagements with great detail and has illustrations and photographs which are specifically related to the text. Concise, non-flowery language helps to bring clarity to the confusing actions of the time.
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