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New From Helion - The Life & Times of Field Marshal Hugh Gough

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HillervonGaertringen Sponsoring Member of TMP of Helion & Co Ltd writes:

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Brave as a Lion: The Life & Times of Field Marshal Hugh Gough, 1st Viscount Gough

Hugh Gough, 1st Viscount Gough, is an interesting and controversial figure of the late Georgian and early Victorian British Army. It is said, he commanded in more battles than any other British soldier of this period, save for the Duke of Wellington. Despite this, there are many who have questioned his command capability and his competence, particularly where the two Sikh Wars are concerned.

In this, the first major account of his life for over 100 years, the author seeks not to defend Gough, but to better understand him. This is done by attempting to draw out the other periods of his life. By so doing, we gain a greater understanding of his background, experiences and influences.

Gough, like so many British officers, was part of the Anglo-Irish community. However, unlike many, he wore his Irish heritage with pride, and would always refer to himself as an Irishman. Yet, he was a Unionist, and fiercely proud of the British Empire.

Born into a military tradition, he first wore the King's uniform at the age of thirteen. He saw extensive service during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. He fought in Southern Africa and the Caribbean. During the Peninsular War, he commanded the 87th Foot and was said to have been the most experienced battalion commander of the conflict. After the war, he served in southern Ireland during the counterinsurgency response to the Rockite movement.

After a lengthy period on half-pay and promotion to major general, he was appointed to command a battalion in the Madras Army. It was from here that he was dispatched to command British forces fighting in China. He worked closely and effectively with his civilian and naval counterparts, and was considered to have been an extremely effective commander. Returning to India, he was overlooked for command of the Madras Army, but was instead rewarded with the appointment of Commander-in-Chief in India.

In this capacity, he conquered the Gwalior State and the Sikh Empire, and greatly enhanced British India. However, his victories came at a high price in terms of casualties, and he was much criticized for this. Despite this, he never lost a battle. He was loved by his men, largely because he suffered with them, and was always willing to share in the danger. In battle, he wore a white fighting coat, which made him easily identifiable to both his men and the enemy.

Whilst his command ability was sometimes questioned, his courage never was. His life is an interesting tale of a career soldier, a fighting soldier, who was, as an officer who served under him remarked, as brave as a lion.

Brave as a Lion: The Life & Times of Field Marshal Hugh Gough, 1st Viscount Gough

234mm x 156mm
616 pages
circa 76 color & black-and-white illustrations
15 black-and-white maps

Out Now From Helion & Available From Amazon!

Text edited by Personal logo Editor Dianna The Editor of TMP
Graphics edited by Editor Hebber
Scheduled by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian