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About the Author: Richard Holmes

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Richard Holmes was Professor of Military and Security Studies at Cranfield University and the Royal Military College of Science. He was educated at Cambridge, Northern Illinois, and Reading Universities, and carried out his doctoral research on the French army of the Second Empire. For many years he taught military history at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.

A celebrated military historian, Richard Holmes is the author of the best-selling and widely acclaimed Tommy and Redcoat: The British Soldier in the Age of Horse and Musket. His dozen other books include Dusty Warriors, Sahib, The Western Front, The Little Field Marshal: Sir John French, The Road to Sedan, Firing Line, The Second World War in Photographs and Fatal Avenue: A Traveller’s History of Northern France and Flanders (also published by Pimlico).

He was general editor of The Oxford Companion to Military History and has presented eight BBC TV series, including ‘War Walks’, ‘The Western Front’ and ‘Battlefields’, and is famous for his hugely successful series ‘Wellington: The Iron Duke’ and ‘Rebels and Redcoats’.


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The Iron Duke by

Goodreads rating: 3.87

Paperback, Published in Feb 2003 by HarperCollins

ISBN10: 0007137508 | ISBN13: 9780007137503

Page count: 324

Richard Holmes, highly acclaimed military historian and broadcaster, tells the exhilarating story of Britain’s greatest-ever soldier, the man who posed the most serious threat to Napoleon. The Duke of Wellington’s remarkable life and extraordinary campaigns are recreated with Holmes’ superb skill in this compelling book.

Richard Holmes charts Wellington’s stellar military career from India to Europe, and in the process, rediscovers the reasons Queen Victoria called him the greatest man the nineteenth century had produced. Combining his astute historical analysis with a semi-biographical examination of Wellington, Holmes artfully illustrates the rapid evolution in military and political thinking of the time.

Wellington is a brilliant figure, idealistic in politics, cynical in love, a wit, a beau, a man of enormous courage often sickened by war. As Richard Holmes charts his progress from a shy, indolent boy to commander-in-chief of the allied forces, he also exposes the Iron Duke as a philanderer, and a man who sometimes despised the men that he led, and was not always in control of his soldiers. Particularly infamous is the bestial rampage of his men after the capture of Cuidad Rodgrigo and Badajoz.

THE IRON DUKE is a beautifully produced book, complete with stunning illustrations and colour plates. Richard Holmes’ TV series to accompany THE IRON DUKE will be lavishly constructed in four parts, and filmed on location in Britain, India, Spain, Portugal, France and Belgium.

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