Franco-Prussian War1870

 A Day of Battle 

 Mars-La-Tour 16August 1870 

David Ascoli - A Day of Battle: This small phone-photograph is intended to show the general appearance and condition.

MARS-LA-TOUR 16 August 1870

 Book details: 

384 pages. 165 mm. x 243 mmm. x 33 mm.

Weight unwrapped 984 grams

Weight wrapped for postage > 1000 grams.

Price: £15:00 including U.K. postage.
For overseas postage quote please email.

 Book's front flap blurb: 

David Ascoli - A Day of Battle: This small phone-photograph is intended to show the general appearance and condition.

Between dawn and dusk on Tuesday, 16 August 1970, a largely forgotten but profoundly important battle was fought on the rolling plateau a few miles to the west of Metz in Lorraine. There the French Army of the Rhine, falling back incautiously towards Verdun, was intercepted by the advance elements of the Second German Army.

What followed, throughout that sunburnt summer’s day, was extraordinary encounter in which was distilled, as in few other battles, the whole essence of war: desperate courage and dreadful error; brilliant bluff and moral cowardice; human frailty and superhuman endurance. As night fell both sides rested on their blood-stained laurels. Both claimed victory. Neither had immediate cause to celebrate.

But the battle of Mars-la-Tour was to change the face of Europe. Two weeks later at Sedan, Emperor Louis Napoleon Bonaparte surrendered his Army of Châlons to King William of Prussia, and on 28 October Marshal Bazaine capitulated the Army of the Rhine to Prince Frederick Charles in Metz. On 18 January, 1871, King William was elected the first Emperor of a united Germany. And who shall say what sombre results were to flow for future generations from that watershed of history?

To this dramatic ‘day of battle’, and its aftermath, David Ascoli his brought his remarkable narrative skills and his sharp sense of irony and compassion so widely praised in his classic account of the Old Contemptibles, The Mons Star. He has researched deeply in both French and German sources and has spent many days on the battlefield of Mars-la-Tour. His book is illustrated with a wealth of maps and plans and with his own photographs of the critical areas of the fighting.

A Day of Battle is an important, unusual, and immensely readable contribution to the history of our times.


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