The Face of Battle
A Study of Agincourt, Waterloo, and the Somme
By John Keegan
(Penguin Books, Paperback, 9780140048971, 368pp.)
Publication Date: January 27, 1983
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Military historian John Keegan’s groundbreaking analysis of combat and warfare
The Face of Battle is military history from the battlefield: a look at the direct experience of individuals at the "point of maximum danger." Without the myth-making elements of rhetoric and xenophobia, and breaking away from the stylized format of battle descriptions, John Keegan has written what is probably the definitive model for military historians. And in his scrupulous reassessment of three battles representative of three different time periods, he manages to convey what the experience of combat meant for the participants, whether they were facing the arrow cloud at the battle of Agincourt, the musket balls at Waterloo, or the steel rain of the Somme.
“The best military historian of our generation.” –Tom Clancy
Sir John Desmond Patrick Keegan (1934–2012), was one of the most distinguished contemporary military historians and was for many years the senior lecturer at Sandhurst (the British Royal Military Academy) and the defense editor of the Daily Telegraph (London). Keegan was the author of numerous books including The Face of Battle, The Mask of Command, The Price of Admiralty, Six Armies in Normandy, and The Second World War, and was a fellow at the Royal Society of Literature.
"The most brilliant evocation of military experience in our time"
"In this book, which is so creative, so original, one learns as much about the nature of man as of battle."
J.H. Plumb, The New York Times Book Review
"This without any doubt is one of the half-dozen best books on warfare to appear in the English language since the end of the Second World War."
Michael Howard, The Sunday Times
"A totally original and brilliant book"
The New York Review of Books