Military History Matters 127

Cover Story

OUT 16 MARCH ON THE PAST!

Features

Churchill’s darkest hour: the Fall of Singapore and the military disasters of 1942 The bleakest moment for Britain's wartime prime minister came not in 1940 – when his popularity soared and he was convinced a German invasion was impossible – but in 1942,…
A tale of three farms: veterans, archaeology, and the Battle of Waterloo Euan Loarridge describes a major project to investigate the battlefield of Waterloo using combined teams of trained archaeologists and military veterans.
The Battle of Britain: but for a few misplaced bombs John Lock resumes his series on the ‘Butterfly Effect’. Last time (MHM June/July 2021) he assessed the possible impact of Stonewall Jackson’s accidental shooting at the Battle of Chancellorsville. This…
Renaissance warfare: a military revolution Neil Faulkner analyses the changing nature of warfare in early 16th-century Europe.
The Battle of Bicocca, 27 April 1522 Neil Faulkner analyses a typical battle of the Italian Wars, a clash between a French and an Imperialist army near the northern Italian city of Milan, fought 500 years ago…
The charge of the Iron Fleet Charleston, 7 April 1863. It was the place where the American Civil War had started. Two years on, with a revolution in naval warfare far advanced, a fleet of Union…
Wellington’s lessons in failure ‘The art of victory is learned in failures.’ It might have been said by Wellington (though in fact it was said by South American revolutionary leader Simón Bolívar). Stephen Roberts…
The Darker Side of Victory: Wellington’s medical service at Waterloo Historian of military medicine Mick Crumplin takes us into the grisly world of Napoleonic-era casualty treatment.

News

HMS Victory marks a century in Portsmouth harbour This year sees the beginning of the next stage of conservation. This work will include the removal of rotting planks and their replacement with new oak, repairs to the ship’s…
Military diploma dating back 2,000 years discovered in Turkey It contains personal information in Latin regarding a soldier’s service in the Roman army, and is believed to be exactly 1,898 years old.
Remains of ‘comfortable’ British POW camp uncovered by archaeologists Around 2,000 German prisoners were housed at this camp, research suggests.
Historic items from legendary warship go on display at Chatham The remains of the ship were discovered in 1979 by local fishermen and she was designated a Historic Wreck in 1980.
Cannon from Revolutionary War raised from Savannah harbour The finds will now be analysed, before being exhibited in the city.
Only portrait Churchill formally sat for during war goes on display The Freedom Portrait, by Frank Owen Salisbury, has joined an existing exhibition at the Churchill War Rooms in London.

Views

The Bell Airacuda Ideas Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Britain all produced their versions of the type, such as the Bf 110, Potez 630, Fokker G.I, and the Beaufighter.
Military history events, lectures, and exhibitions in 2022 Museum, What's on - The Vulcan and Cold War Experience - In Harm’s Way: The US Navy and World War II - What a history! The MusÉe de L’ArmÉe Collections
In Memoriam: Dr Neil Faulkner Comment, People As all who worked with him here would agree, he was not just a man of extraordinary and wide-ranging intellectual and professional ability, but also a hugely generous, thoughtful, and…
War on Film: Benediction Comment, TV & Film The early stages of Benediction (written and directed by Terence Davies) deal with this story in a very cursory way. There is no treatment of Sassoon (Jack Lowden) as a…
MUSEUM REVIEW – Royal Logistic Corps Museum Museum, What's on A visit is highly recommended for anyone with an interest in finding out how the British Army has been sustained over the last six centuries.
Samurai: history and legend Museum, The Picture Desk For many centuries, the outside world knew little of the Japanese way of life. Before the Meiji Restoration of 1868 – after which the country rapidly modernised and opened itself…
War of Words – ‘GLADIATOR’ Ideas Gladius was a general Latin word for ‘sword’. A gladiator was someone who fought with a gladius – a swordsman. As usually employed today, gladius refers to a double-edged short…
WATERLOO RE-ENACTMENT What's on The bicentenary of what became known in Britain as the Battle of Waterloo has been marked by an outburst of commemorations, central to which was an enormous re-enactment that took…

Reviews

Military history events, lectures, and exhibitions in 2022 - The Vulcan and Cold War Experience - In Harm’s Way: The US Navy and World War II - What a history! The MusÉe de L’ArmÉe Collections
Brothers in Arms: one legendary tank regiment’s bloody war from D-Day to VE-Day Those with an interest in the British Army in the Second World War have had their appetites whetted recently by the paperback release of An Englishman at War: the wartime…
War on Film: Benediction The early stages of Benediction (written and directed by Terence Davies) deal with this story in a very cursory way. There is no treatment of Sassoon (Jack Lowden) as a…
War on Film: The Forgotten Battle TAYLOR DOWNING reviews the latest film releases.
Armour of the English Knight, 1450-1500 The English armourers of the 15th century were great craftsmen, artists, and innovators. That is the essential conclusion of Tobias Capwell’s monumental study of the armour of the English knight…
MUSEUM REVIEW – Royal Logistic Corps Museum A visit is highly recommended for anyone with an interest in finding out how the British Army has been sustained over the last six centuries.
The Searchers: the quest for the lost of the First World War One of the most tragic consequences of the First World War was the idea and the reality of ‘the missing’. All earlier wars had victims of which no trace was…
Soldiers: great stories of war and peace Soldiers is a personal selection of stories about war by a leading military historian following a lifetime spent studying the subject. It is not a heavyweight tome, but a fun-to-read…
WAR CLASSICS – Barbarossa: The Russian-German Conflict 1941-45 MHM Editor Neil Faulkner recalls one of the great works of military history.
The Greatest Raid: St Nazaire, 1942 – the heroic story of Operation Chariot The superficial justification for Operation Chariot – the daring British commando raid on the French port of St Nazaire in March 1942 – was that it would deny Tirpitz a…

From the editor

The Renaissance is famous for its art. But it was not just a cultural revolution. It was an age of transformation that affected all aspects of life, including warfare.
Our special this issue takes a close look at this strangely neglected period of military history. By the late 15th century, the crude head-to-head collisions characteristic of medieval battles were giving way to a new kind of war based on firepower, manoeuvre, and combined-arms operations.

Much of it was experimental. It was a while before commanders mastered the tactics of the ‘pike-and-shot’ era. But that only makes it more fascinating: we bear witness to a military revolution in the making.

Also this time, we have the second of John Lock’s ‘butterfly effect’ articles, this time looking at how ‘a few misplaced bombs’ saved the RAF from defeat in the Battle of Britain.

Continuing the Second World War theme, Taylor Downing, our regular film reviewer, takes us to ‘Churchill’s darkest hour’ – not, it seems, 1940, but 1942, a doom-laden year that began with the fall of Singapore.

Completing the issue, naval historian Michael Laramie describes ‘the charge of the iron fleet’ at Charleston in April 1863 – classic confrontation of shore batteries and ironclads – while archaeologist Euan Loarridge reports on a project that brings together professionals, students, and military veterans in an ongoing investigation of the battlefield of Waterloo.

Neil Faulkner

We are profoundly sorry to report Neil’s death, on 4 February 2022, shortly before this issue went to press.