Background image is Les Dernières Cartouches (The Last Cartridges) by Alphonse de Neuville

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Waterloo's 200th: The Great Day

So, on the 18th of June itself, I have little time, sadly, to blog. I hope that tomorrow I may be able to provide something more of interest relating to the last great battle of the Napoleonic Wars.

Instead, let me point you to a couple of other sites that have interesting posts on Waterloo.

One of these I've linked to in my other Waterloo posts: JJ's Wargames.

Today, instead of providing the sort of detailed summary of the day's events he has done other days this week, he goes on a personal excursus, explaining how he came to be interested in Napeoleonic history. This caused him to travel, not only to Belgium, but to the Iberian battlefields of the Peninsular campaigns. He provides some photos and some telling insights about the ways that Wellington's journeyman battles as army commander led to his masterwork at Waterloo.

The Two Nerdy History Girls blog is another I enjoy, and today they have a piece on the Waterloo experience of Colonel Frederick Ponsonby. Those who have seen Bondarchuk's classic film about the battle, which features a scene of Col. Ponsonby leading the charge of the Union Brigade, may be surprised by the ending of his story.

Earlier in the week, the Girls also posted on the rather horrific aftermath of the battle, featuring JMW Turner's 181 painting The Field of Waterloo.

Historynet had quite a fascinating article several years ago on the women who took part in, or were at least involved in, the battle.

Which I came across when trying to rediscover a link to this article, a piece by the Smithsonian on a prominent American who took a leading role in the British Army's contingent on the field.

What round-up would be complete without links to the 200th anniversary renactment (which promises live streaming video of the event--though it appears one needs to pay a fee for it)

And, perhaps more useful, the (UK) National Army Museum's Waterloo 200 site. (The website for Les Invalides, strangely enough, doesn't even mention this week's events. Their calendar for this week has only an event about Churchill and De Gaulle. Their permanent collection features Napoleonic material in its page on the Modern Department and, of course, the Emperor's tomb, but that's all.)

And I'll close with a link for further reading, if you'd like some: the page on Waterloo, with a variety of different articles, including orders of battle, analyses, accounts of singluar incidents, and a transcription of a letter about the battle by no less than Michel Ney.

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