The Belgian Army in World War I

The Belgian Army in World War I

Men-at-Arms 452
  • Author: Ronald Pawly, Pierre Lierneux
  • Illustrator: Patrice Courcelle
  • Short code: MAA 452
  • Publication Date: 10 Jun 2009
  • Number of Pages: 48
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About this Product

While small in numbers, the Belgian Army played a vital role in World War 1 that is often overlooked. Germany's invasion of neutral Belgium, which led Britain to declare war in August 1914, should have been swift and fierce yet the unexpected heroic defence, against great odds, of Belgian fortresses, frustrated the German Schlieffen Plan for a thrust to Paris and a lightning victory. The plucky Belgian resistance proved successful in buying time for French and British troops to mobilize and report to the front, where the Belgians would then go on to fight, stubbornly defending the northern end of the Allied trench line for the rest of the war. Discover the story of this determined Army, from their organization and commanders, to their uniforms and equipment. The only main combatant army of World War I not previously covered by Osprey, this volume will be an important addition to any enthusiast's collection, accompanied by detailed artwork and archive photographs.

Biographical Note

Ronald Pawly was born in Antwerp, Belgium in 1956 and still lives and works in that city. He is a respected member of several international societies for Napoleonic studies, and an expert on 19th century military portraiture. He is the author of the monumental The Red Lancers: Anatomy of a Napoleonic Regiment (Crowood Press, 1998), and of a study of Napoleonic veterans' tombs in Belgium. He has previously written for Osprey Men-at-Arms 355, Wellington's Belgian Allies 1815; MAA 371, Wellington's Dutch Allies 1815; MAA 371, Napoleon's Red Lancers; MAA 378, Napoleon's Guards of Honour; and Elite 115, Napoleon's Imperial Headquarters (1): Organization & Personnel. Although, a leading Napoleonic historian, Ronald Pawly has also always been fascinated by the First World War and has heavily researched the Belgian involvement in such a conflict. Patrice Courcelle was born in northern France in 1950 and has been a professional illustrator for some 20 years. Entirely self-taught, he has illustrated many books and magazine articles for Continental publishers, and his work hangs in a number of public and private collections. His dramatic and lucid style has won him widespread admiration in the field of military illustration. His other enthusiasms include music, from Clapton and the blues to Mahler, and cooking. Patrice lives a few miles from the battlefield of Waterloo with his wife and son.

Contents

* The Belgian Army in 1914 * German violation of Belgian neutrality, August 1914 * The defence of the fortresses, August-October: Liège, Namur, Antwerp * The defence of the Yser line, October - the breaking of the dykes * Operations on the Western Front, 1915-18 * Operations on other fronts, 1915-18: Africa - Russia * Uniforms and equipment: pre-1914 - the 1914 'Yser' uniform - 1915: khaki, Adrian helmets, web equipment - insignia - weapons

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