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Armies of the German Peasants' War 1524-26 (Men-at-arms) Paperback – Illustrated, 19 Feb 2003

4 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (19 Feb. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841765074
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841765075
  • Product Dimensions: 18.4 x 0.5 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 613,332 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Douglas Miller researches and models broadly in the period of the German Renaissance and Reformation. He has previously written two Men-at-Arms titles for Osprey Man-at-Arms 58: The Landsknechts and Men-at-Arms 94: The Swiss at War 1300-1500. Doug is married with three children and currently works for an international trade union organisation. Angus McBride is one of the world's most respected historical illustrators, and has contributed to more than 70 Osprey titles in the past three decades. Born in 1931 of Highland parents but orphaned as a child, he was educated at Canterbury Cathedral Choir School. He worked in advertising agencies from 1947, and after national service, emigrated to South Africa. He now lives and works in Cape Town.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
By the end of the 15th century the conditions amongst the peasants in Germany described here by Friedrich Engels in his Peasant War in Germany had brought them to breaking point. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Format: Paperback
The perfect gift for all history enthusiasts is THE ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKERCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker

An unusual and though "minor" war, one which nevertheless devastated
large parts of Germany and echoed the later Thirty Years War in terms of its

Peasant rebellions are an historic fact of course, and the book opens with an
account of the many sporadic uprisings, such as the "Poor Conrads," usually
brutally suppressed, and of the 1524 Stuhlingen rising, which led to a rapid series
of connected uprisings across Germany. The book deals very well indeed with
the organisation of the peasant armies, some quite small, like that of Hersfeld in
Thuringia, only 4,000 strong. Others were much larger -- Brisgau-Ortenau had
12,000 men under arms. Even the leaders and commanders of the Peasant troops
are known and recorded in most cases. The campaign is set out chronologically,
from the outset to the final defeat in the Tyrol in the Spring of 1526.

This was no "pitchfork
rebellion" but a savage war, though brief, fought between the armies of the
rulers of the states, and a collection of rebels from towns and countryside, to
which were allied miners, disaffected knights and soldiery, and mercenaries,
including landsknechts in a series of major battles. The rebels were armed with
everything from flails to a sophisticated and perhaps surprising ordnance park,
including guns such as Falconets and handguns. They were a colourful and
vigorous force, employing wagon forts on occasion.
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The Peasant’s War of 1524-26 broke in several regions of what we would now call Germany; its initial cause being discontent at the complete absence of rights the ordinary people suffered under. Originally just bands of men armed with whatever they could find roaming the countryside it did attract the sympathies of some landsknecht commanders and a few nobles, though motivations could be murky. It was condemned by no lesser person than Martin Luther and so ruthlessly supressed by the nobles through their professional armies that some historians arguably cite this event as instrumental in the subsequent growth of obedience to authority in those regions affected.
This book is another example of Osprey on good form. Although in the Men-at-Arms series the author does not stint on the historical detail, in fact it would sit quite well in the ‘Essential History’ series.
Events, principal characters and battles are covered in detail and the Osprey trademark plates are very evocative, giving an idea of the feelings running through those times.
As a history it makes a bit of a gloomy read, the rebels were outclassed; although they worked hard at their organisation, their training was patchy and they lacked cavalry which in many of the encounters seems to have been the deciding factor. Even though the rank and file of the armies sent against them came from the same backgrounds there was no over-riding urge of fraternity.
If you have an interest in the in the military history of this era this is an interesting addition in providing background information. And I suggest it is a very good stand-alone book for anyone who like me has scant if any knowledge of this episode in history.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8d7c581c) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8d7e4ba0) out of 5 stars Brief but savage war of the Reformation era 21 Feb. 2004
By Eduardo J. Tellez A - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The First Great conflict of the Reformation era was the German Peasants Revolt,the war was actually not one seamless event,but a series of essentially uncoordinated regional revolts inspired by radical preachers, many peasants bands across southern Germany rose up becoming small armies sometimes with the help of some Landsknechts,disaffected knights and mercenary soldiers, at the end the ill-equipped and the short of mounted men help the Swabian League to suppress the revolt.
Excellent plates by Angus McBride of the Peasant Banners as well of the League,photographs of costume and armour, it's all here,this is a useful addition to the library of anyone interested in the "BUNDSCHUH" conspiracy(the shoe was the symbol of the Rebels),this is a simply wonderful book, small but the content by Mr. Miller is an excellent introduction, this is a most interesting and rewarding read of a less know Revolt of the Renaissance,highly informative.
Related Books "Landsknecht Soldier 1486-1560"(Warrior 49)by John Harald Richards for tactics of the Renaissance are check "Pavia 1525,The Climax of the Italian Wars"(Campaign 44)by Angus Konstam, another one is "The Renaissance At War" by Thomas Arnold is a look into the major conflicts,wars,tactics and a little bit of everything fron the series Cassell's History of Warfare, more campaign books by Osprey treat Renaissance Warfare like "Fornovo 1495,France's Bloody Fighting Retreat"(Campaign 43).
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8d7e6894) out of 5 stars The German Peasants' War 15 Jan. 2008
By K. Murphy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is an absorbing summary of an obscure, yet savagely fought series of conflicts fought in the mid 1520's in Germany. As always, Mr. McBride's artwork is top-notch, and depicts the soldiers of both the peasant and Loyalist armies doing battle, as well as the flags of the various participating factions. As with the contemporary Landsknechts, many of the warriors on both sides were known especially for their malice, debauchery, and their colorful (and sometimes grotesque) clothing styles.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8d7e6858) out of 5 stars The not so good old days 26 July 2014
By Mike - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Well first off, the plates are by the legendary Angus McBride, a heroic illustrator. Then there's the whole peasants tired of the church, the wealthy and powerful, and a generally bad life. Mix in mercenaries on all sides, and you can see just how unhappy this part of the world has been for a long time.
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