Post by damnitz on May 25, 2016 14:33:23 GMT
Denis Gandilhon: "Fontenoy - France dominating Europe" Histoire et Collections, Paris, 2011
Content: 82 p. in a lot of chapters (without table of Contents!) in full colour, softcover.
Prize, around 16 €.
A book about this famous and very interesting battle.
If you don't have the work by Belaubre about the dutch army of this period (1995), than here are some very rare notes about this very interesting army.
You may find the book quiet cheap in the internetshops. Reasons for this maybe are explained in my notes beneath These lines.
Only 12 sources were listed up in the bibliography and you cannot find any references, where exactly the author got his knowledge (no footnotes).
The plans are realy simpel and only 2! All French Units are clear to identify but no pragmatic! There are no detailed plans for sectors like the dutch attack or the highlanders attack on Fontenoy. Take the contemporay plan and you miss nothing. Maybe the author did not more than relying on this plan! en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_Battle_for_the_Battle_of_Fontenoy#/media/File:Plan_de_la_bataille_de_Fontenoy_remport%C3%A9e_le_11_mai_1745.jpg
The modern illustrations are odd. OK, if you like a comicstyle in such books is a question of your taste. But the pictures give no further information. They are realy useless in my eyes and poorly and somehow cheap made. Even with only 5 of these Pictures by Pierre Joux they occupy to much of the pages as they are full page! OK, perhaps the idea was to fill the pages...
The modern uniform plates are a Little bit better. But the descriptions are not good or consequent. Some figures have a description of unit, rank, original source etc. and some were only named "Linden Cavalry Regiment" or something like it. The style is a bit better but is boring with every face looking the same. I'm not sure if there are no faults as the uniform of the Ligne Dragoons look the same like the SYW-uniform...
The book is very much written with the French eyes. Some headings like "A professional army" regarding the French seam really odd. If the French were so well - why did they lost nearly this battle?
In fact there are a lot of odds because of poor research. The OoB in the Appendix seams too simpel. There you can not find (in my eyes) all brigades. In the text Gandilhon mentions that the French cavalry had 2 or 3 sqns per Regiment. But in his OoB he list up most of the units with 4 sqn.s what is right. In 1743 the units were increased by the king on this strengh. So even the faults are not logical.
Most of us will find problems with the other pictures in this book. The interesting pictures like these excellent paintings by Blarenberghe and other contemporaries are small and the 19th century prints are big. Even the Pictures of Units which were not in the battle (like a Picture of the Hannovarian guards by Knötel) are included and bigger than interesting pictures! I would prefer and recommend to include mostly pictures from the period. You can find very often a lot of details in the background of a portray for example.
If not completely useless, it's hard to recommend this book - in particulary in times of Wikipedia and other modern ways to find informations. You will find hardly more Details and informations about this battle in the book than in the todays english or/and French Wikipedia-text. If the authors idea was to make a earnest book about this event he would had to prefer plans over 2 pages.