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David Nicolle - Author

About the Author

David Nicolle, born in 1944, worked in the BBC's Arabic service for a number of years before gaining an MA from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and a doctorate from Edinburgh University. He has written numerous books and articles on medieval and Islamic warfare, and has been a prolific author of Osprey titles for many years. Graham Turner is a leading historical artist, specializing in the medieval period. He has illustrated numerous titles for Osprey, covering a wide variety of subjects from the dress of the 10th-century armies of the Caliphates, through the action of bloody medieval battles, to the daily life of the British Redcoat of the late 18th century.

Featured books by David Nicolle

The Conquest of Saxony 782-785 Charlemagne's Defeat of Widukind of Westphalia

The Conquest of Saxony 782-785 Charlemagne's Defeat of Widukind of Westphalia

Author: David Nicolle Format: DAT Release Date: 07/08/2014

Charlemagne's conquest of the Saxons was the hardest fought and most protracted of his wars; it involved 18 campaigns spread across 33 years, a great deal of lower-level fighting and the harshest final peace settlement that Charlemagne ever imposed upon a defeated foe. Rapidly taking on the character of a religious conquest from its outset, it also became the most important of all Charlemagne's wars for the future direction and character of European history and began the long process of uniting the German-speaking peoples. With extensive photographs, full colour artworks, maps and bird's-eye-views, this volume unravels the initial stages of a convoluted sequence of events that led to the conquest of the Saxons and ultimately Charlemagne's consolidation of Saxony into the greater Carolingian Empire.

Other books by David Nicolle

Wings Over Sinai The Egyptian Air Force During the Sinai War, 1956

Wings Over Sinai The Egyptian Air Force During the Sinai War, 1956

Author: David Nicolle, Air Vice Marshal Gabr Ali, Tom Cooper Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/03/2017

Sixty years since the tripartite aggression of France, Great Britain and Israel against Egypt, this is the first account about Egyptian military operations during the Suez War of 1956 (or `Suez Crisis', as it is known in the West). Based on research with the help of official Egyptian documentation and recollections of crucial participants, this book provides an unique and exclusive insight into the `other side' of a war that many consider has marked `the end of the British Empire'. From the Western point of view, the situation is usually explained in quite simple terms: in retaliation for President Gamal Abdel Nasser's nationalisation of the Universal Suez Canal Company - and thus the strategically important waterway of the Suez Canal - France and Great Britan (operating in concert with Israel) launched the operation codenamed 'Musketeer'. Divided into three phases, each shaded into the other; this aimed at obliterating the Egyptian Air Force, occupying the whole of the Suez Canal and toppling Nasser's government. From the Egyptian point of view, backgrounds were much more complex than this. Striving to modernize the country, a new and inexperienced government in Cairo launched a number of major projects, including one for the construction of a gigantic Asswan Dam on the Nile. The only Western power ready to help finance this project, the USA conditioned its support with basing rights for its military. With the last British soldiers still about to leave the country - and thus end Egypt's occupation by foreign powers for the first time in 2,000 years - Nasser found this unacceptable. Around the same time, Egypt found itself under pressure from Israeli raids against border posts on the Sinai. Left without a solution, Cairo decided to nationalize the Suez Canal in order to finance the Aswan Dam project, but also to start purchasing arms from the Soviet Union. In an attempt to bolster Egyptian defenses without antagonizing Western powers, Nasser concluded the so-called `Czech Arms deal' with Moscow - resulting in the acquisition of Soviet arms via Czechoslovakia. Little known in Cairo at the time, such moves tripped several `red lines' in Israel and in the West - in turn prompting aggression that culminated in a war. Wings over Sinai is, first and foremost, an account of the battle for survival of the Egyptian Air Force (EAF). Caught in the middle of conversion to Soviet-types, this proved more than a match for Israel, but were hopelessly ill-prepared to face the military might of Great Britain and France too. Sustained, days-long air strikes on Egyptian air bases caused heavy damage, but were nowhere near as crippling as the losses usually claimed and assessed by the British, French and Israelis. The EAF not only survived that conflict in quite a good order, but also quickly recovered. This story is told against the backdrop of the fighting on the ground and the air and naval invasion by British and French forces. Richly illustrated with plenty of new and previously unpublished photographs, maps (and 15 color profiles), this action-packed volume is illustrates all aspects of camouflage, markings and various equipment of British and Soviet origin in Egyptian military service as of 1956.

Mamluk `Askari 1250-1517

Mamluk `Askari 1250-1517

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/11/2014

New archaeological material and research underpins this extensive, detailed and beautifully illustrated account of the famous Mamluk Askars who are credited with finally defeating and expelling the Crusaders, halting the Mongol invasion of the Islamic Middle East, and facing down Tamerlane. Probably the ultimate professional soldiers of the medieval period they were supposedly recruited as adolescent slaves, though recent research has begun to undermine this oversimplified interpretation of what has been called the Mamluk phenomenon .

The Conquest of Saxony 782-785 Charlemagne's Defeat of Widukind of Westphalia

The Conquest of Saxony 782-785 Charlemagne's Defeat of Widukind of Westphalia

Author: David Nicolle Format: DAT Release Date: 07/08/2014

Charlemagne's conquest of the Saxons was the hardest fought and most protracted of his wars; it involved 18 campaigns spread across 33 years, a great deal of lower-level fighting and the harshest final peace settlement that Charlemagne ever imposed upon a defeated foe. Rapidly taking on the character of a religious conquest from its outset, it also became the most important of all Charlemagne's wars for the future direction and character of European history and began the long process of uniting the German-speaking peoples. With extensive photographs, full colour artworks, maps and bird's-eye-views, this volume unravels the initial stages of a convoluted sequence of events that led to the conquest of the Saxons and ultimately Charlemagne's consolidation of Saxony into the greater Carolingian Empire.

Crusades

Crusades

Author: David Nicolle Format: eBook Release Date: 06/06/2014

Born amid immense suffering and bloodshed, the Kingdom of Jerusalem remained a battlefield for almost 200 years. The Crusades gave rise to the Military Orders of the Templars and Hospitallers, and were a backdrop to the careers of some of history's most famous leaders including Richard 'The Lionheart' and Saladin. On occasion the savagery of the Crusaders left their opponents reeling, creating frictions that survived for more than 700 years. At the same time, as this book lavishly illustrates, art, architecture and learning all benefited from new knowledge the Crusaders brought back from the East.

Great Islamic Conquests AD 632-750

Great Islamic Conquests AD 632-750

Author: David Nicolle Format: eBook Release Date: 06/06/2014

Few centuries in world history have had such a profound and long-lasting impact as the first hundred years of Islamic history. In this book, David Nicolle examines the extensive Islamic conquests between AD 632 and 750. These years saw the religion and culture of Islam erupt from the Arabian Peninsula and spread across an area far larger than that of the Roman Empire. The effects of this rapid expansion were to shape European affairs for centuries to come. This book examines the social and military history of the period, describing how and why the Islamic expansion was so successful.

Forces of the Hanseatic League 13th-15th Centuries

Forces of the Hanseatic League 13th-15th Centuries

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/04/2014

The Hanseatic League was a commercial and defensive federation of merchant guilds based in harbour towns along the North Sea and Baltic coasts of what are now Germany and her neighbours, which eventually dominated maritime trade in Northern Europe and spread its influence much further afield. The League was formed to protect the economic and political interests of member cities throughout a vast and complex trading network. The League continued to operate well into the 17th century, but its golden age was between c.1200 and c.1500; thereafter it failed to take full advantage of the wave of maritime exploration to the west, south and east of Europe. During its 300 years of dominance the League's large ships - called `cogs' - were at the forefront of maritime technology, were early users of cannon, and were manned by strong fighting crews to defend them from pirates in both open-sea and river warfare. The home cities raised their own armies for mutual defence, and their riches both allowed them, and required them, to invest in fortifications and gunpowder weapons, since as very attractive targets they were subjected to sieges at various times.

Manzikert 1071 The breaking of Byzantium

Manzikert 1071 The breaking of Byzantium

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/08/2013

On 26 August 1071 a large Byzantine army under Emperor Romanus IV met the Saljuq Turk forces of Sultan Alp Arslan near the town of Manzikert. The battle ended in a decisive defeat for the Byzantine forces, with the Byzantine emperor captured and much of his fabled Varangian guard killed. This battle is seen as the primary trigger of the Crusades, and as the moment when the power of the East Roman or Byzantine Empire was irreparably broken. The Saljuq victory opened up Anatolia to Turkish-Islamic conquest, which was eventually followed by the establishment of the Ottoman state. Nevertheless the battle itself was the culmination of a Christian Byzantine offensive, intended to strengthen the eastern frontiers of the empire and re-establish Byzantine domination over Armenia and northern Mesopotamia. Turkish Saljuq victory was in no sense inevitable and might, in fact, have come as something of a surprise to those who achieved it. It was not only the battle of Manzikert that had such profound and far-reaching consequences, many of these stemmed from the debilitating Byzantine civil war which followed and was a direct consequence of the defeat.

The Portuguese in the Age of Discovery c.1340-1665

The Portuguese in the Age of Discovery c.1340-1665

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/11/2012

From humble beginnings, in the course of three centuries the Portuguese built the world's first truly global empire, stretching from modern Brazil to sub-Saharan Africa and from India to the East Indies (Indonesia). Portugal had established its present-day borders by 1300 and the following century saw extensive warfare that confirmed Portugal's independence and allowed it to aspire to maritime expansion, sponsored by monarchs such as Prince Henry the Navigator. During this nearly 300-year period, the Portuguese fought alongside other Iberian forces against the Moors of Andalusia; with English help successfully repelled a Castilian invasion (1385); fought the Moors in Morocco, and Africans, the Ottoman Turks, and the Spanish in colonial competition. The colourful and exotic Portuguese forces that prevailed in these battles on land and sea are the subject of this book.

European Medieval Tactics 2 New Infantry, New Weapons 1260-1500

European Medieval Tactics 2 New Infantry, New Weapons 1260-1500

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/08/2012

With the development in the 13th century of co-operative tactics using crossbowmen and heavy spearmen, circumstance began to arise in which the charge by Muslim horse-archers, and then by European armoured knights, could be defied. Infantry were far cheaper and easier to train than knights, and potentially there were far more of them. Tactics emerged by which more numerous and more varied infantry played an increasing part in battles. This book traces these and other examples of this 'jerky' and uneven process through its regional differences, which were invariably entwined with parallel cavalry developments - the balanced army of 'mixed arms' was always the key to success. By the time serious hand-held firearms appeared on battlefields in large numbers in about 1500, the face of medieval warfare had been transformed.

The Fall of English France 1449-53

The Fall of English France 1449-53

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/02/2012

Despite the great English victories at Crecy, Poitiers and Agincourt, the French eventually triumphed in the Hundred Years War. This book examines the last campaign of the war, covering the great battles at Formigny in 1450 and Castillon in 1453, both of which hold an interesting place in military history. The battle of Fornigny saw French cavalry defeat English archers in a reverse of those earlier English victories, while Castillon became the first great success for gunpowder artillery in fixed positions. Finally, the book explains how the seemingly unmartial King Charles VII of France all but drove the English into the sea, succeeding where so many of his predecessors had failed.

The Fourth Crusade 1202-04 The betrayal of Byzantium

The Fourth Crusade 1202-04 The betrayal of Byzantium

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/08/2011

The Fourth Crusade was the first, and most famous of the 'diverted' Crusades, which saw the Crusade diverted from its original target, Ayyubi Egypt, to attack the Christian city of Zadar in modern Croatia instead, an attack that was little more than a mercenary action to repay the Venetians for their provision of a fleet to the Crusaders. This book examines the combined action and sacking of the city of Zara, which saw the Crusaders temporarily excommunicated by the Pope. It goes on to evaluate how the influence of the Venetians prompted an attack on Constantinople, analyses the siege that followed and describes the naval assault and sacking of the city which saw the Crusaders place Count Baldwin of Flanders on the Byzantine throne.

European Medieval Tactics 1 The Fall and Rise of Cavalry 450-1260

European Medieval Tactics 1 The Fall and Rise of Cavalry 450-1260

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 09/06/2011

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire there was a decline in 'professional' cavalry forces, and infantry dominated in the Germanic successor 'barbarian' kingdoms. In the Carolingian and Norman periods from the 9th to the 11th centuries, the cavalry arm gradually expanded from the small remaining aristocratic elite. Even so, the supposedly complete dominance of the 'knight' in the 12th and 13th centuries is grossly exaggerated, as integrated cavalry and infantry tactics were nearly always the key to success. This is a two-part treatment of medieval tactics. Throughout the period there was a steady evolution of training in both individual and unit skills, of armour and weapons, and thus of tactics on the battlefield. This book covers Hastings in 1066 to Legnano in 1176. It also details the two key set piece battles of Bouvines in 1214 and Pelagonia in 1259, the former an example of abject failure of cavalry tactics and the latter a stunning success.

The Great Chevauchee John of Gaunt's Raid on France 1373

The Great Chevauchee John of Gaunt's Raid on France 1373

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/05/2011

In 1373, John of Gaunt set off from Calais on a great raid to strike at the heart of France. Driven by the high ideals of chivalry,the raiders left with epic pageantry. However, the reality soon overwhelmed the raiders. Beset on all sides by French ambushes and plagued by disease and starvation, the raiders battled their way through Champagne, east of Paris, into Burgundy, across the Massif Central and finally down into the Dordogne. Unable to attack any major fortifications, John of Gaunt's men plundered the countryside, raiding towns and villages, weakening the French infrastructure. While the military value of the raid is debatable, the English knights who finally made it home were hailed as heroes. This book charts the course of the raid from beginning to end, studying all the battles and skirmishes the raiders fought along the way in this bloody example of chivalric warfare.

Saladin

Saladin

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/04/2011

This Osprey Command book looks closely at the early life, military experiences and key battlefield exploits of Al-Malik al-Nasir Yusuf Ibn Najm al-Din Ayyub Ibn Shahdi Abu'l-Muzaffar Salah al-Din - or Saladin as he is more commonly known outside the Islamic world - who is broadly regarded as the greatest hero of the Crusades, even in Europe. Most chroniclers present him as a man of outstanding virtue, courage and political skill. More recently, however, efforts have been made to portray Saladin as an ambitious, ruthless and even devious politician, and as a less brilliant commander than is normally thought. This book sets out to reveal that the truth is, as usual, somewhere in between.

Cross and Crescent in the Balkans The Ottoman Conquest of Southeastern Europe

Cross and Crescent in the Balkans The Ottoman Conquest of Southeastern Europe

Author: David Nicolle Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/10/2010

This is not just another retelling of the Fall of Constantinople, though it does include a very fine account of that momentous event. It is the history of a quite extraordinary century and a bit which began when a tiny of force of Ottoman Turkish warriors was invited by the Christian Byzantine Emperor to cross the Dardanelles from Asia into Europe to assist him in one of the civil wars which were tearing the fast-declining Byzantine Empire apart. One hundred and eight years later the Byzantine capital of Constantinople fell to what was by then a hugely powerful and expanding empire of the Islamic Ottoman Turks, whose rulers came to see themselves as the natural and legitimate heirs of their Byzantine and indeed Roman predecessors. The book sets the scene, explains the background and tells the story, both military, political, cultural and personal, of the winners and the losers, plus those 'outsiders' who were increasingly being drawn into the dramatic story of the rise of the Ottoman Empire.

Ottoman Fortifications 1300-1710

Ottoman Fortifications 1300-1710

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/05/2010

The Ottoman Empire was heir to the architectural traditions not only of the Byzantine Empire but also to those of the medieval Islamic Middle East. Having learned from these, the Ottomans created a fusion of military architectural styles to which they added what they learned from their later medieval and early modern European rivals. This book explores the historical background, socio-political circumstances and purposes of Ottoman military architecture, and reveals the incorporation of many different traditions that led to specific developments in form, function and decoration of these remarkable constructions. Among the areas covered are urban fortifications and the role of cities, frontier fortresses and the role of the Janissaries, garrison citadels as seats of power, and the role of small forts in protecting major communications, trade and pilgrimage routes.

Ottoman Infantryman 1914-18

Ottoman Infantryman 1914-18

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 10/02/2010

Following the Balkan Wars of 1912-1913, the Ottoman Empire undertook a massive military retraining program. Although many histories have depicted the Ottomans as a poor fighting force, this was more often due to poor leadership and logistics. The typical Ottoman soldier, the asker, was tough, well-trained, and courageous. While fighting over varied terrain from Gallipoli, to Mesopotamia and to the Caucasus, they proved themselves to be able front-line troops. This is the first English-language book to focus exclusively on the Ottoman infantryman in the First World War. Using a combination of first-hand accounts, period photographs and specially commissioned artwork, it explores the recruitment, training, and combat experiences of these often-neglected warriors.

Saracen Strongholds 1100-1500 The Central and Eastern Islamic Lands

Saracen Strongholds 1100-1500 The Central and Eastern Islamic Lands

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/09/2009

By the time of the Crusades, the Islamic world had already developed its own sophisticated styles of fortification. Distinctive and highly effective, the region's unique military architecture continued to evolve in response to the Crusader and Mongol threats, and also drew upon the traditions of their foes and neighbours. The resulting Islamic concepts of military architecture had an influence upon fortifications in Western Europe, including Italy and the Iberian Peninsula. However, Islamic fortifications continued to focus upon the defence of cities and frontiers rather than providing security for feudal aristocracies, as was increasingly the case in Europe. Covering fortifications as far apart as North Africa, Afghanistan and northern India, this volume focuses on the Islamic side of the conflict, highlighting the fortifications in use when the Crusaders sought to reconquer the Holy Land, as well as the eventual absorption of the territories of Byzantium into the Islamic world.

Great Islamic Conquests 632-750

Great Islamic Conquests 632-750

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/05/2009

Few centuries in world history have had such a profound and long-lasting impact as the first hundred years of Islamic history. In this book, David Nicolle examines the extensive Islamic conquests between AD 632 and 750. These years saw the religion and culture of Islam erupt from the Arabian Peninsula and spread across an area far larger than that of the Roman Empire. The effects of this rapid expansion were to shape European affairs for centuries to come. This book examines the social and military history of the period, describing how and why the Islamic expansion was so successful.

The Second Crusade 1148 Disaster Outside Damascus

The Second Crusade 1148 Disaster Outside Damascus

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/01/2009

Despite minor setbacks, Christian Europe had enjoyed success on previous Crusader campaigns. Pursuing an ambitious but politically flawed strategy against an Islamic state friendly to their Crusader neighbours, the knights of the Second Crusade suffered a crushing defeat at Damascus in 1148. This battle shook the Crusaders' belief in their military supremacy, and revived the Islamic states, marking a crucial turning point in the history of the Crusades.

Saracen Strongholds AD 630-1000 The Middle East

Saracen Strongholds AD 630-1000 The Middle East

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/06/2008

The Islamic world drew upon a myriad of pre-existing styles of fortification, taking Romano-Byzantine, Indian and Chinese ideas to create a highly effective and sophisticated hybrid fortification that was both new and distinctive.

Medieval Polish Armies 966-1500

Medieval Polish Armies 966-1500

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/02/2008

The history of Poland is a fascinating study of a people struggling to achieve nationhood in the face of internal and external enemies. Poland became a unified Christian state in AD 966 and by the 12th century a knightly class had emerged - a force that was integral to the defense of Poland against increasingly frequent foreign invasions. Intent on crushing rival Christian states, the Templars, Hospitallers and Teutonic Knights all mounted attacks but were beaten back by the Poles, as were invading Mongols and Turks. This book reveals the organization, equipment and battle histories of the medieval Polish armies as they developed and modernized to emerge as one of the dominant powers of Eastern Europe.

Poitiers AD 732 Charles Martel Turns the Islamic Tide

Poitiers AD 732 Charles Martel Turns the Islamic Tide

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/02/2008

In the early decades of the 8th century AD, Islamic forces were flooding into Europe through the Iberian peninsula, threatening Frankish and Burgundian territory and raiding it with ever-increasing ferocity. At the battle of Poitiers, also known as Tours, Christian forces under the Frankish leader Charles Martel The Hammer (grandfather of Charlemagne) confronted a massive invading Islamic army. The Franks were victorious, effectively halting the northward advance of Islam and preserving Christianity as the dominant faith in Europe. Expert medievalist David Nicolle draws on contemporary sources to reconstruct this turning-point battle, places it in its historical context and reviews its background and immediate and longer-term historical consequences.

Teutonic Knight 12th-16th Centuries

Teutonic Knight 12th-16th Centuries

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/11/2007

Osprey's study of Teutonic Knights from 1190 to 1561. The Military Order of Teutonic Knights was one of the three most famous Crusading Orders; the others being the Templars and the Hospitallers. Like these two, the Teutonic Knights initially focused upon the preservation of the Crusader States in the Middle East. Wielding their swords in the name of their faith, the crusading knights set out to reclaim Jerusalem. Unlike the Templars they survived the crises of identity and purpose which followed the loss of the last Crusader mainland enclaves in the late thirteenth century and, like the Hospitallers, they managed to create a new purpose - and a new field of combat - for themselves. Whereas the Hospitallers focused their energies in the eastern Mediterranean battling against Muslim armies, the Teutonic Knights shifted their efforts to the Baltic, to the so-called Northern Crusades against pagan Prussians and Lithuanians and, to a lesser extent, against Orthodox Christian Russia. As a result the Order of Teutonic Knights became a significant power, not only in the Baltic but in north-central Europe as a whole. Paradoxically, however, it was their fellow Catholic Christian Polish neighbours who became their most dangerous foes, breaking the Order's power in the mid-fifteenth century. The Teutonic Knights lingered on in what are now Estonia and Latvia for another century, but this was little more than a feeble afterglow. This title will examine this fascinating military and religious order in detail, revealing the colourful history of the crusades within Europe itself which inexorably changed the future of the continent.

Crusader Warfare Muslims, Mongols and the Struggle Against the Crusades

Crusader Warfare Muslims, Mongols and the Struggle Against the Crusades

Author: David Nicolle Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/09/2007

This second volume of Crusader Warfare focuses on those non-Christian cultures which were most directly involved in the Crusades. Centering on the Islamic world, the Mongol World Empire , its fragmented successor states and certain other non-Christian cultures David Nicolle presents many fascinating aspects of warfare and the historical, cultural and economic background of the Islamic military during a much neglected period. In reality the Crusades, and the parallel but separate clash between the Islamic World and the Mongols, resulted from a remarkable variety of political, economic, cultural and religious factors. These campaigns involved an extraordinary array of states, ruling dynasties, ethnic, linguistic and cultural groups as well as the fighting forces associated with these disparate participants.Much current interest in the Crusades reflects the perceived threat of a so-called clash of civilizations and, while warnings of such a supposed clash in our own times are based upon a misunderstanding of the natures of both Western and Islamic civilizations, certain commentators have looked to the medieval Crusades as an earlier example of such a clash. Some have even interpreted the third force of the Mongols as somehow prefiguring the role of China, Japan or the Far East as a whole in the today's world.

Crusader Warfare Byzantium, Western Europe and the Battle of the Holy Land

Crusader Warfare Byzantium, Western Europe and the Battle of the Holy Land

Author: David Nicolle Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/05/2007

This book presents as many aspects as possible of warfare during the period of the crusades within all the cultures most directly involved. To a large extent the current interest in the Crusades reflects the perceived threat of a so-called 'clash of civilisations'. While warnings of such a supposed clash in our own times are based upon a misunderstanding of the natures of both 'Western' and 'Islamic' civilisations, some commentators have looked to the medieval Crusades as an earlier example of such a clash. In reality they were no such thing. Instead the Crusades resulted from a remarkable variety of political, economic, cultural and religious factors. The Crusades, even excluding the Northern or Baltic Crusades, also involved an extraordinary array of states, ruling dynasties, ethnic or linguistic groups and the fighting forces associated with these disparate participants. This volume focuses on Western Europe and the Byzantium Crusades. Latin or Catholic Europe certainly had an 'eastern front'. Medieval Europeans, and certainly the knightly class which came to bear the brunt of Crusading warfare, would have seen all these fronts as part of Latin Christendom's struggle against outsiders. The latter ranged from infidels to schismatics, to pagans and other 'enemies of God'. Excluding Crusading or Christian frontier warfare north of the Carpathian Mountains did not reflect any real military or even political factors on the Latin side of the 'front'. It is based upon which enemies were to be included and which excluded. This study looks at Christian and in a few cases pagan armies whose actions or mere existence in sub-Saharan Africa and Central Asia, had a bearing upon military, political and economic relations between Christendom and Islam within the Mediterranean world.

Crusader Castles in Cyprus, Greece and the Aegean 1191-1571

Crusader Castles in Cyprus, Greece and the Aegean 1191-1571

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/02/2007

Crusader castles and other fortifications in Cyprus, the south-western coast of Turkey and Greece are amongst the best examples of late medieval military architecture to be seen in Europe. These important fortifications, erected by the Hospitallers during the 15th century to face the growing Ottoman Turkish threat, vary considerably from those in the Middle East. Despite there being many visible remains of fortifications in Cyprus, Greece and the Aegean, few studies exist of these areas compared to the fortifications of the Holy Land. Providing numerous architectural plans, maps and colour illustrations, this book seeks to redress this imbalance and complement the previous bestselling treatments of Crusader fortifications in the Fortress series.

Armies of Ivan the Terrible Russian Armies 1505-c.1700

Armies of Ivan the Terrible Russian Armies 1505-c.1700

Author: David Nicolle, Viacheslav Shpakovsky Format: Paperback Release Date: 10/01/2006

In most other national contexts, the term 'Renaissance' can be applied to the 16th and 17th centuries, but it cannot be said of Russia. During this time, the centralised state of the new Tsars achieved military unity under the domination of Moscow and started its expansion eastwards across Siberia and southwards towards Central Asia. Poland-Lithuania and Sweden also proved formidable threats to Russia's security. Despite their exotically Russian appearance, these armies gradually took on a more modern dimension. This book covers the armies 'invented' by Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century, looking at their development through the 17th century.

The Third Crusade Richard the Lionheart, Saladin and the Struggle for Jerusalem

The Third Crusade Richard the Lionheart, Saladin and the Struggle for Jerusalem

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/11/2005

The clash between King Richard I 'The Lionheat' of England and Saladin has become legendary, and the strategy and tactics of a resolute, heavily armed Anglo-Saxon army versus their more lightly armed opponents have continued to fascinate military enthusiasts down the ages. The religious and geopolitical significance of the third crusade are immense and are still being played out to this day. Here was a Crusader army marching towards the greatest goal in Christendom, the Kingdom of Jerusalem, harried by a Muslim force that was equally determined to stop it. Although the battle was eventually won by the Crusaders, the prize itself remained elusive.

Acre 1291 Bloody Sunset of the Crusader States

Acre 1291 Bloody Sunset of the Crusader States

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/08/2005

In April 1291, a Mamluk army laid siege to Acre, the last great Crusader fortress in the Holy Land. For six weeks, the siege dragged on until the Mamluks took the outer wall, which had been breached in several places. The Military Orders drove back the Mamluks temporarily, but three days later the inner wall was breached. King Henry escaped, but the bulk of the defenders and most of the citizens perished in the fighting or were sold into slavery. The surviving knights fell back to their fortress, resisting for ten days, until the Mamluks broke through. This book depicts the dramatic collapse of this great fortress, whose demise marked the end of the Crusades in the Holy Land.

Crusader Castles in Holy Land 1192-1302

Crusader Castles in Holy Land 1192-1302

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/07/2005

After the Second Crusade in 1148 the Crusader States embarked on a period of caution and consolidation and, in an increasingly hostile environment, began strengthening existing fortifications and building new castles. Following on from Fortress 21 in the series, which looked at Crusader castles in the Holy Land from 1097 to 1192, this book takes the history of these military structures through to the early 14th century. David Nicolle examines the design and development of castles, the defensive strategies and construction methods used, the influence of Arabic and Islamic traditions in military architecture, as well as siege weaponry and everyday social and religious life. All this is placed within a historical context. Plans, maps, a timeline, photograhs and reconstruction drawings (by Adam Hook) are presented throughout. A tour of five examples (Margat, Crac des Chevaliers, Atlit, Caesarea Maritima and Arsuf), is also included.

Carolingian Cavalryman, 768-987 AD

Carolingian Cavalryman, 768-987 AD

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/03/2005

Charlemagne's army enabled him to create what he and his contemporaries regarded as a 'reborn' Western Roman Empire. Charlemagne revolutionised the organisation, logistics, indoctrination and training of his army. His troops seemed able to fight on indefinitely, even when they were thousands of miles away from Frankish territory. This title explores the role of the cavalry, the essential striking force of Charlemagne's army. In many respects the cavalrymen were the fore-runners of medieval Western European knights, yet the author shows how their recruitment, organisation, armament and tactics were still rooted in the medieval past. This book shows how the Carolingian armoured horseman played an important role in the development of European warfare.

Crusader Castles in the Holy Land 1097-1192

Crusader Castles in the Holy Land 1097-1192

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/07/2004

Of all the castles constructed by Western Europeans during the Middle Ages, none have caught the public imagination so much as Crusader castles. These structures, ranging from the very simple to the huge and elaborate, also encompass almost all aspects of Western European military architecture during the golden age of castle building from the 12th to the 13th centuries. This first volume in a series of three will focus on 12th century castles in the regions now known as Israel, Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and south-eastern Turkey. Later volumes will focus on 13th century castles in Greece, Cyprus and the Aegean.

Poitiers 1356 The Capture of a King

Poitiers 1356 The Capture of a King

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 25/06/2004

The battle of Poitiers was one of the most important battles of the first part of the Hundred Years' War between England and France. With an Anglo-Gascon army, the Black Prince carried out a large raid into the heart of France in the summer of 1356, causing King John of France to bring his superior forces south of the Loire. This book details their meeting at Poitiers, where after a hard fight the French were defeated. Large numbers of French were captured, including King John and his son the Dauphin. Poitiers confirmed the Black Prince's military reputation, as well as that of the English.

Arab Mig-19 & Mig-21 Units in Combat

Arab Mig-19 & Mig-21 Units in Combat

Author: David Nicolle, Tom Cooper Format: Paperback Release Date: 19/03/2004

The MiG-21 provided the backbone of frontline Arab air combat strength for many years and remained the Arabs only real hope of challenging Israeli air supremacy. This book tells, in great detail, the story of the MiG-21 in Egyptian, Syrian and Iraqi service. It includes numerous photographs, most of which have not been seen outside the Arab world and a large proportion of which have never previously been published anywhere. The material is drawn from official sources and from the private collections and recollections of men who flew, or met, these aircraft in combat.

Medieval Scandinavian Armies 1300-1500

Medieval Scandinavian Armies 1300-1500

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 22/10/2003

This period saw profound changes, as Scandinavia became greatly influenced by military events and developments elsewhere in Europe. Most noticeably, plate armour began to take over from mail; and important evidence is provided by the remarkable 14th century battle grave finds at Wisby, where many corpses were tipped rapidly into mass graves still wearing their armour. This book examines the traces of wounds on the thousand-plus excavated skeletons offering unique insights into the realities of medieval hand-to-hand fighting. Later the increased use of Continental mercenaries introduced massed infantry tactics, especially in Denmark during the almost unceasing 'Union Wars' of the 15th century.

Medieval Scandinavian Armies 1100-1300

Medieval Scandinavian Armies 1100-1300

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/08/2003

As the Viking Age gave way to the Middle Ages the development of Scandinavian armies showed special local characteristics, due both to the rough terrain and the relatively 'egalitarian' nature of society. Though Denmark's proximity to Germany led to the appearance there of a kind of feudal system and some heavy armoured cavalry, in Sweden and Norway there was fairly willing co-operation between the few nobles and the many free farmers. This book shows how armies were of local infantry levies raised by 'democratic' methods to defend home territory. It also details how the crossbow became very important along with ambush tactics and winter campaigning, employing the use of sledges and skis.

The First Crusade 1096-99 Conquest of the Holy Land

The First Crusade 1096-99 Conquest of the Holy Land

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 20/08/2003

To many people the Crusades were the First Crusade. This first 'armed pilgrimage' to the Holy Land was, of course, the only Crusade that really succeeded. It resulted in the establishment of four so-called Crusader States in the Middle East and its repercussions can still be felt today. But in addition to its historical significance, this book explores how the First Crusade saw several armies march right across Europe at a time when such a thing was virtually unheard of. It also struck the Islamic World at a moment when the latter was chronically divided and thus won a series of miraculous military victories, which would have been impossible a generation earlier and were never repeated afterwards.

The Italian Army of World War I 1915-18

The Italian Army of World War I 1915-18

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 12/03/2003

Due to her refusal to support Austria-Hungary at the beginning of the war, Italy was left in a position of neutrality. Both sides wanted Italy involved in the war and she was able to hold out for the best possible deal - this time on the allied side. This work shows that the majority of Italy's battles took place on the frozen slopes of the Alps, including the numerous battles of the Isonzo, the disaster at Caporetto and, in its aftermath the holding of the Piave line. Also covered are the eventual victory at Vittoria Veneto, and the conquest of Trieste following the Austrian collapse. The Italian army was also involved in fighting in Albania and the Middle East, as well as suppressing a pro-Ottoman uprising in Libya.

Medieval Siege Weapons Byzantium, the Islamic World and India

Medieval Siege Weapons Byzantium, the Islamic World and India

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 11/03/2003

The medieval period was probably the most varied in military history when it came to the development of non-gunpowder military machines. One reason for this was the bringing together of several pre-existing military-technological traditions from the ancient Graeco-Roman World, Persia, India and China. Three civilizations were primarily responsible for the ease with which such technologies were brought together and combined: the Late-Roman or Byzantine Empire; the Islamic World; and the Mongol World Empire . This work looks at the stone throwing machines that used assorted sources of power from torsion energy storage systems, to manpowered sling devices, counterbalance sling devices and rockets.

Warriors and their Weapons around the Time of the Crusades Relationships between Byzantium, the West and the Islamic World

Warriors and their Weapons around the Time of the Crusades Relationships between Byzantium, the West and the Islamic World

Author: David Nicolle Format: Hardback Release Date: 23/12/2002

The technological relationship between the three main civilizations of the Western world - Byzantium, the Islamic world and the West - most particularly in the area of arms, armour and military technology is a field of research for which Dr Nicolle is noted. This volume deals principally with Western Europe and Byzantium, which for many centuries learnt from the Muslims in these matters; several articles also focus on military interactions in the Crusader states. The work draws upon both written and archaeological sources, but above all makes use of the depictions of war and military equipment in contemporary art to examine the interconnections across the medieval world.

Medieval Siege Weapons Western Europe

Medieval Siege Weapons Western Europe

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/09/2002

The Medieval era was a period of huge variety and invention in the field of siege warfare. Before the use of cannon and other gun-powder artillery, siege engines relied on assorted sources of power from torsion 'energy storage' systems to man-power, counter-balances and others. This book reveals how the combining of technological traditions from the Graeco-Roman world, Persia, India and above all China made a massive contribution to the development of siege techniques. Medieval military engineering was equally inventive in terms of mining, counter-mining, the breaking of walls, the use of noxious and chemical fumes and the use of fire-weapons.

Italian Medieval Armies 1000-1300

Italian Medieval Armies 1000-1300

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 18/09/2002

Although it was one of the main centres of armour production for export, early medieval Italy's costumes and armour reflected a vigorous but fragmented military system, influenced by Byzantine and Islamic styles as much as by northern Europe. This book shows how the rise of independent city armies and those of the Papacy, the spread of naval power and the founding of Norman states in the south all contributed to a dazzling kaleidoscope of military styles. The fascinating text is accompanied by numerous illustrations including eight full colour plates by the renowned military artist, Angus McBride.

Medieval Russian Armies 1250-1450

Medieval Russian Armies 1250-1450

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 17/05/2002

Orientalized Between the 13th and 15th centuries Russia developed along different lines from the rest of Europe. The Mongol conquest had a profound influence on arms, armour, organization, recruitment and tactics. Russian forces were pitted against late Mongol armies strongly influenced by contact with the Turkish-Islamic world. During the closing decades of this period the rising power of Muscovy, the most Mongolized of the Russian principalities, turned the tables and began to dominate the remaining Mongol (Tartar) Khanates. This book reveals how the role of firearms, particularly siege artillery, and the development of distinctive Russian forms of wooden fortifications, often in conjunction with the use of gunpowder artillary, make this period in Russia's military history unique.

Orleans 1429

Orleans 1429

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/11/2001

By 1429, with French fortunes in the Hundred Years War at their lowest ebb, an English victory seemed inevitable. Northern France including Paris was firmly under English control and the city of Orleans was besieged by an English army. At the darkest hour, a deeply religious peasant girl from Champagne came to the Dauphin, convinced that she had a divine mission to help him defeat the English. Her name was Joan of Arc. In less than four months Joan's inspired leadership helped to break the siege of Orleans. This volume tells the story of a legendary episode in France's history.

Knight Hospitaller 1306-1565

Knight Hospitaller 1306-1565

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/11/2001

The Hospitallers were the first of the Secular Crusading Orders to be created, though they were only militarized after the establishment of the Templers. The Hospitallers played a major role in the military struggle between Christendom and the Islamic World throughout the mediaeval and early modern periods. They recruited from a wide section of society, but their structure and attitudes reflected the aristocratic-based society of their day. They primarily campaigned on land during the first phase of their existence, and primarily at sea during their second phase. This work reveals how, like other Military Orders, the Hospitallers played a significant cultural, political and economic role within the Christian Empire itself.

Kalka River 1223 Ghengis Khan's Mongols Invade Russia

Kalka River 1223 Ghengis Khan's Mongols Invade Russia

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/11/2001

This book tells the fascinating story of the battle of the Kalka River, the culmination of Ghengis Khan's reconnaissance expedition into Russia of 1221. The consequences for the history of Europe were incalculable. The decisive Mongol victory over a combined Russian and Kipchaq army at the battle of the Kalka River opened up vast regions of Russia and Christian Eastern Europe to Mongol conquest. On orders from Ghengis himself the victorious Mongols returned eastwards, delaying the final cataclysm by a few years. However, the Russians were incapable of strengthening their defences enough to withstand the later attacks. As a result Russia fell under what historians call 'the Mongol yoke' for several centuries. In 1227 Ghengis died but the victory at the Kalka River was followed within 14 years by a Mongol invasion of Eastern Europe and even more disastrous defeats. Only the death of the Ogatai, son and successor of Ghengis, saved Europe from Mongol domination.

Knight Hospitaller 1100-1306

Knight Hospitaller 1100-1306

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/07/2001

The Hospitallers were the first of the Secular Crusading Orders to be created, though they were only 'militarized' after the establishment of the Templers. The Hospitallers played a major role in the military struggle between Christendom and the Islamic World throughout the medieval and early modern periods. The Hospitallers recruited from a wide section of society, but their structure and attitudes reflected the aristocratic based society of their day. They primarily campaigned on land during the first phase of their existence, and primarily at sea during their second phase. This book offers a full exploration of the significant role played by the Hospitallers in the cultural, political and economic development of the Christian Empire.

The Crusades

The Crusades

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 19/01/2001

Born amid immense suffering and bloodshed, the Kingdom of Jerusalem remained a battlefield for almost 200 years. The Crusades gave rise to the Military Orders of the Templars and Hospitallers, and were a backdrop to the careers of some of history's most famous leaders including Richard 'The Lionheart' and Saladin. On occasion the savagery of the Crusaders left their opponents reeling, creating frictions that survived for more than 700 years. At the same time, as this book lavishly illustrates, art, architecture and learning all benefited from new knowledge the Crusaders brought back from the East.

The Moors The Islamic West 7th-15th Centuries AD

The Moors The Islamic West 7th-15th Centuries AD

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/01/2001

The high point of medieval islamic expansion was the 700-year presence of the 'Moors' in Spain and Portugal. The Arab and Berber conquest was followed by the establishment of a richly distinct culture in Andalusia, where for a while Muslim and Christian co-operated as often as they fought. The rise and fall of successive Islamic dynasties brought new invaders, fragmentation and disunity; and the growing Christian kingdoms to the north eventually doomed the amirate of Granada, the last Moorish bastion, which fell to the Castilians in 1492. The extraordinarily varied and colourful armies of Westem Islam are described and illustrated here in fascinating detail.

Constantinople 1453 A Bloody End to Empire

Constantinople 1453 A Bloody End to Empire

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/11/2000

This Osprey title details the epic four-month siege of the city of Constantinople in 1453, last vestige of the once mighty Roman and Byzantine Empires. Mehmet 'The Conqueror' led an army of 80,000 men with a massive siege train against the city. Defending were a mere 10,000 men under the Emperor Constantine XI. The Turkish artillery battered the ancient city walls mercilessly, levelling a large section. A gallant defence held off the massive Turkish assault for several hours. Refusing appeals to flee, Constantine returned to the breaches and fought until overwhelmed and killed. Thus died the last Emperor of the Byzantines, and with him his once glorious empire.

Crecy, 1346 Triumph of the Black Prince

Crecy, 1346 Triumph of the Black Prince

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/06/2000

The Battle of Crecy was the first major land battle of the Hundred Years War (1337-1453). It pitted the French army, then considered the best in Europe, and their miscellaneous allies against the English under King Edward III and the 'Black Prince', who as yet had no great military reputation; this was the battle where he 'won his spurs'. The Genoese crossbowmen were outshot by the English longbows and the pattern was set for the rest of the day: the French cavalry were committed piecemeal in fruitless charges against strong English positions, losing perhaps 10,000 men in the course of the fighting. After almost a millennium in which cavalry had dominated the field of battle, the infantryman, and particularly the longbowman, now ruled supreme.

French Armies of the Hundred Years War

French Armies of the Hundred Years War

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/02/2000

The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries were a time of great upheaval for medieval France. In 1328 the Capetian line came to an end. This was the trigger for the Hundred Years War (1337-1453) as successive English kings attempted to uphold their claim to the French throne. Catastrophic defeats at Cr cy and Poitiers shook the French kingdom to its core. A period of respite followed under Bertrand du Guesclin, but an even more devastating assault was to follow, under the warrior-king par excellence Henry V, and the French disintegration continued until 1429. This book details how the French began a recovery, partly triggered by the young visionary Joan of Arc, that would end with them as the major European military power.

Medieval Russian Armies, 838-1252

Medieval Russian Armies, 838-1252

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 29/10/1999

In the centuries following the first expeditions down the great rivers of northern Russia by Viking traders and adventurers, the foundations for a new state were laid. Many influences combined in this colourful culture which grew up first around the great cities of Kiev and Novgorod - Scandinavian, Finnish, Slav, steppe Turkish, Byzantine. By the time of the Mongol invasions of the 12th century the small enclaves of the old pagan Rus', tolerated by the Khazar Khans for their commercial usefulness, had evolved into a Christian nation. Its story is told here in fascinating detail, and illustrated with striking colour reconstructions of the warriors themselves.

Italian Militiaman, 1260-1392

Italian Militiaman, 1260-1392

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/02/1999

Medieval Italy was characterized by regular warfare among its numerous city-states, as well as internal strife within comunes as aristocratic factions fought each other for domination of the cities' governments. In this context, Italian warfare developed quickly, with the crossbow playing a key role in improving the armour technology of the Italian city militias that used them. This book traces the evolution of the Italian militiaman, providing a comprehensive view of all aspects of the late medieval Italian city militias, from the weaponry, attitudes and social backgrounds of their members, to the political context that made such formations necessary.

Armies of the Caliphates, 862-1098

Armies of the Caliphates, 862-1098

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 23/11/1998

The 8th century heralded the start of a golden age in the history of the Islamic world. At this time, the Sunni Muslim 'Abb sid Caliphate, with its capital at Baghdad, ruled virtually the entire Islamic world. Islamic military power peaked in the 9th century, but by the end of this golden age in the 11th century, the 'Abb sid Caliphs had little political and virtually no military power. Featuring numerous photographs of artefacts and eight full colour plates by Graham Turner, David Nicolle's book examines the recruitment, organization, weaponry and uniforms of the armies of the Caliphates from 862-1098.

The Fall of Granada, 1481-1492 The End of Andalucian Islam

The Fall of Granada, 1481-1492 The End of Andalucian Islam

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/05/1998

By 1481 Granada was the last Islamic enclave in Catholic Spain. Granada's last ruler, Muhammad XII 'Boadbil', faced the might of the Spanish royal army revitalised and lavishly equipped with modern artillery. Despite this mismatch of strength it took 11 years of hard campaigning before the Spanish troops could bring their guns to bear on the walls of Granada. After this the outcome could not be long delayed. Andalusia, the physical embodiment of the flowering Islamic culture in Spain, was snuffed out. The commanders, forces, plans and campaign itself are all examined closely in this superbly illustrated account of 'Los Reyes Catolicos' greatest victory.

Armies of the Ottoman Empire, 1775-1820

Armies of the Ottoman Empire, 1775-1820

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 09/03/1998

The Ottoman army was arguably the most colourful of all the military forces to take the field in the Napoleonic wars. This period was one of transition as the Ottoman empire struggled to come to terms with the upheavals caused by war to modernise her military forces in the face of threats from France, Britain and Russia. Covering the period between the reigns of Sultan Selim III and Sultan Mahmut II, this book details the series of military and naval reforms including the creation of the Nizam-i Cedit or new army and efforts to modernise traditional corps such as the Janissaries. It also looks at the role of foreign advisors, the impact of the French Revolution and the establishment of new military technical schools. This period was marked by a series of campaigns beginning with the defeat of the Mamluks in Egypt, followed by the joint Ottoman/British campaigns in Syria and Egypt which drove out the French. In the face of continuous military threats and despite attempts to reverse the reforms the Ottoman army continued the process of modernisation which saw the Empire through the 19th and into the 20th century.

The Italian Invasion of Abyssinia, 1935

The Italian Invasion of Abyssinia, 1935

Author: David Nicolle, Raffaele Ruggeri Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/10/1997

The Italian invasion of Abyssinia on 3rd October 1935 marked the first of the fascist military adventures. The campaign is described in detail in this text, along with the equipment used and the colourful uniforms worn by both armies. The invasion marked the most ambitious phase yet in Mussolini's attempt to recreate an Italian Empire and was partly prompted by the desire for revenge for the humiliating defeat inflicted on Italian troops at Adowa in 1896. International opinion was outraged by the invasion and the use of poison gas against an army with almost medieval weaponary. It took just seven months to drive out Emperor Haile Selassie. The whole episode discredited the League of Nations as an effective curb on the military ambitions of the Fascist states and was an important lesson to Nazi Germany.

Knight of Outremer, 1187-1344

Knight of Outremer, 1187-1344

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/10/1996

After Saladin's great victory at the Battle of Hattin in 1137, Outremer, as medieval westerners called the remaining Latin or Catholic enclaves in the eastern Mediterranean, was no longer a threat to Islam. Its military elites preferred to live in peace, focusing on trade as much as on the defence of Christendom's holy places. In this, the first book in the English language to objectively study the knights of the Latin East, David Nicolle presents a well-balanced and informed account of the Western warriors who defended the Crusader territories for so long.

Fornovo, 1495

Fornovo, 1495

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/09/1996

In the year 1495, Charles VIII was the youthful King of France, the most powerful state in medieval Europe. A dreamer who saw himself as the saviour of Christian Europe, he believed he could roll back the ever-spreading tide of Ottoman Turkish conquest. As a base for his crusade he was determined to seize southern Italy. In a lightning campaign he used France's modern army to sweep through Italy, his mobile field artillery train smashing into dust the tall towers of Italy's medieval castles. The Italian states rallied and at Fornovo their alliance, the League of Venice, fought Charles' army to a standstill.

Lake Peipus, 1242

Lake Peipus, 1242

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/03/1996

The story of the struggle between the Teutonic Knights and the Russian city state of Novgorod, under their leader Alexander Nevsky. The Teutonic Knights were a powerful military order with the backing of the crusading zeal of Europe, the blessing of the Pope and the support of the Holy Roman Emperor. The clash of arms around the frozen shores of Lake Peipus came to be known as The Battle on the Ice. The text is accompanied by six battlescene artworks and three bird's-eye-view maps showing the course of the battle.

The Janissary

The Janissary

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/05/1995

The Janissaries comprised an lite corps in the service of the Ottoman Empire. It was composed of war captives and Christian youths pressed into service; all of whom were converted to Islam and trained under the strictest discipline. In many ways, Jannisaries reflected Ottoman society, which was itself dominated by a military elite and where there was much greater social mobility than in Europe. On top of this, the Turks looked upon Europe much as the early Americans viewed the Western Frontier - as a land of adventure, mission and opportunity. David Nicolle examines the history, organisation, weapons and uniforms of these lite Turkish troops.

Yarmouk, 636AD The Muslim Conquest of Syria

Yarmouk, 636AD The Muslim Conquest of Syria

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/05/1994

Osprey's Campaign title for one of the battles in which Muslims attempted to overtake Syria. In 636 AD, after protracted skirmishing and minor engagements the Arab and Byzantine armies faced each other on the banks of the Yarmuk river. The Byzantines were initially successful, driving back the Arab right wing. Finally, though, the Arab counter-attacks broke the Byzantine lines and the subsequent pursuit became a rout. The awful fate of the fleeing Byzantine soldiers was remembered for several generations until it was recorded in early Islamic histories. David Nicolle not only looks at the battle itself but also the whole decisive Arab campaign - from the Muslim invasion of 633/4 to the fall of Byzantine Syria.

The Ottoman Army 1914-18

The Ottoman Army 1914-18

Author: David Nicolle Format: Spiral bound Release Date: 28/03/1994

The Ottoman Turkish Empire was one of the leading protagonists of World War I, and the stolid courage of the individual Ottoman soldier was recognised by all. Yet the army in which he served is, like the Ottoman empire itself, generally little understood. Over the four years of the Great War, the Ottoman Army, Navy and two tiny air services fought on five major fronts, as well as seeing troops serve in many other war zones. This title takes a close look at the organisation, uniforms and equipment of the Ottoman Army during this period, and dispels the numerous myths that have surrounded the examinations of its forces at this time. Navy, Air, auxiliary and allied forces are also covered.

Moghul India, 1523-1805

Moghul India, 1523-1805

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 25/11/1993

Babur, the founder of the Mughul dynasty, was of Turco-Mongol origin - he was descended from Timur-i-Lenk [Tamerlane] on his father's side and Genghiz Khan on his mother's. His first raid into India in 1516 was followed by several others, and by the time of his death in 1530 Babur's troops had reached Bengal on the far side of the sub-continent. With eight fine full page colour plates by Angus McBride, and many other illustrations, this text by David Nicolle examines the organisation, tactics and uniforms of Mughul armies from Babur's time onwards.

The Mamluks

The Mamluks

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/07/1993

In Europe the Mamluks of Egypt are remembered as so-called 'Slave Kings' who drove out the Crusaders from the Holy Land; but they were far more than that. Though its frontiers barely changed, the Mamluk Sultanate remained a 'great power' for two and a half centuries. Its armies were the culmination of a military tradition stretching back to the 8th century, and provided a model for the early Ottoman Empire, whose own armies reached the gates of Vienna only twelve years after the Mamluks were overthrown. This absorbing text by David Nicolle explores the organisation and tactics of these fascinating people.

Armies of the Muslim Conquest

Armies of the Muslim Conquest

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 25/03/1993

The dramatic eruption of the Arab peoples from Arabia after their adoption of the Muslim faith in the 7th century remains one of the most extraordinary events in world history. By the end of that century they ruled a state that stretched from the Atlantic to India, from southern Arabia to Central Asia, covering an area far greater than that of the Roman Empire. Therefore warfare, at least among the nomadic bedouin, was a normal aspect of life. Complemented by numerous illustrations, including eight full page colour plates by Angus McBride, this detailed text by David Nicolle tells the real story of the armies of the Muslim conquest.

Hattin, 1187 Saladin's Greatest Victory

Hattin, 1187 Saladin's Greatest Victory

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/01/1993

In 1187, Christian Europe was shaken by events in the Middle East. This volume tells the story of those momentous months - the campaign leading to the Muslim capture of Jerusalem after the disastrous Crusader defeat at Hattin where, in a two day running battle on the waterless plateau between Saffuriya and Tiberias, beneath a burning sun, Saladin's troops destroyed the Christian army. The disaster at Hattin resulted in the collapse of the kingdom of Jerusalem and sparked off the Third Crusade under Richard I 'Coeur de Lion'. This book examines Hattin in detail and looks at the consequences of the battle.

Romano Byzantine Armies 4th-9th Century

Romano Byzantine Armies 4th-9th Century

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 25/09/1992

By the late 4th century the pressures on the frontiers of the Roman Empire had transformed the nature of the army which defended it. With the western half of the empire in economic decline and chronic manpower shortages the army had proved incapable of defending the line of the frontier. Necessity forced the induction of large numbers of German federate allies and the transformation of the army into a mobile fire-brigade which could move from crisis-point to crisis-point, dealing with major barbarian incursions. This need for mobility was reinforced by Roman experiences against the Sassanid Persians increasing the quantity of armoured cavalry within the army. This book details the rise of the army and its evolution, after the collapse of the west, into the army of the Byzantine Empire.

French Mediaeval Armies, 1000-1300

French Mediaeval Armies, 1000-1300

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 25/04/1991

By the 11th century the French King had lost control of border regions, while local warfare had grown alarmingly frequent. In fact the energies of the French military elite were now focused on petty internal squabbles and external adventures like the Norman conquest of England. Nevertheless, the population and economy both expanded, although it was not until the 12th century that the crown rebuilt its power-base. Despite its slow start when compared with neighbours like England, the Kingdom of France had, by the 13th century, risen to become the most powerful state in Western Europe. This title describes the organisation, history and tactics of French medieval armies.

Rome's Enemies Desert Frontier

Rome's Enemies Desert Frontier

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/03/1991

Rome's desert frontier was one where the Empire faced few dangers, for here relations were generally based on a mutual interest in trade across the frontier. Yet when Rome did clash with desert peoples, particularly those of Syria and Arabia, the mobility, fighting skills and ability to withdraw into an arid wilderness often gave the Arabs, Berbers and Sudanese an extra edge. This fascinating volume by David Nicolle explores the history and armies of Rome's enemies of the desert frontier. The author's fine text is accompanied by a wealth of illustrations and photographs, including eight stunning full page colour plates by Angus McBride.

Attila and the Nomad Hordes

Attila and the Nomad Hordes

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/09/1990

Of all the conquerors who swept out of Central Asia, two names stand out in European memory - Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan the Mongol. Both are remembered for massacres and devastation; yet whereas Genghis is also famous for the laws he imposed on half of Asia and for the trade which flourished under Mongol rule, Attila's notoriety seems unrelieved by positive achievements. But what was Attila's short-lived empire really like? What happened to the Huns afterwards, and what role did the nomads of Central Asia play in the centuries between Attila and Genghis Khan?

The Age of Tamerlane

The Age of Tamerlane

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/07/1990

Tamerlane or Timur-i-Lenk ('Timur the Lame') is one of the most extraordinary conquerors in history. In the late 14th century his armies seized huge territories from the borders of Mongolia to Palestine and Anatolia. His passage was marked by massacres that outdid even those of the Mongols for sheer savagery. Timur's career was unequalled since Alexander the Great in terms of constant battlefield success. Only in his youth, while recovering his family estates south of Samarqand, did he face occasional defeat. This title tells the remarkable story of Timur and details the organisation, tactics, arms and armour of his all-conquering army.

The Venetian Empire 12th-17th Centuries

The Venetian Empire 12th-17th Centuries

Author: David Nicolle, Christopher (Illustrator) Rothero Format: Paperback Release Date: 23/03/1989

The story of Venice is, to some extent, separate from that of the rest of Europe. The same could be said of the city's military history and organisation. Early in the 9th century the Venetians defeated Pepin the Frank's attempts to overawe them, and they remained, at least in theory, subject to Byzantium. Gradually, however, Venice drifted into independence; and subsequently carved out its own empire at the expense of its former Byzantine masters. The Venetians were soon famous for their roving and warlike spirit, keen business acumen and pride. This book explores the remarkable history of the city and its army from 1200 up until 1670.

Lawrence and the Arab Revolts, 1914-18

Lawrence and the Arab Revolts, 1914-18

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 23/03/1989

The Great War of 1914-18 is often seen as one major battleground - the Western Front - with numerous 'side-shows'. The other battle zones were not side-shows to those involved, however, although the local inhabitants often fought for motives which remained a closed book to their European allies or foes. David Nicolle relates the story of the Arab Revolts (1916-18), and discusses just how important (or unimportant) was the role of T. E. Lawrence in the affair, in a fascinating text backed by a fine collection of contemporary photographs and eight full page colour plates by Richard Hook.

The Crusades

The Crusades

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 22/09/1988

Born of a mixture of religious fervour, military ardour and political will, the Crusades ( 1095 - 1291) remain a fascinating and misunderstood aspect of medieval history. Born amid immense suffering and bloodshed the Kingdom of Jerusalem remained a battlefield for almost 200 years. The Crusades raised to campaign for it gave rise to the Military Orders of the Templars and Hopitallers as well as numerous smaller orders, and were a backdrop to the careers of some of history's most famous leaders including Richard 'The Lionheart' and Saladin. David Nicolle recounts the background and events of these fundamental campaigns that scarred the Late Medieval period.

El Cid and the Reconquista Warfare in Medieval Spain 1050-1492

El Cid and the Reconquista Warfare in Medieval Spain 1050-1492

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/07/1988

The very name El Cid sums up much of the special character of medieval Spanish warfare. It comes from the Arabic al sayyid, master or chieftain, and seems to have been given to Rodrigo de Vivar by his Muslim foes. But was it given in recognition of El Cid's victories against Islam in the 'Reconquista' - or because this Castilian nobleman was as content to serve beside the Muslims as to fight them? The story of the Christian conquest of the Iberian peninsula which gave rise to the legend of El Cid, is here examined by David Nicolle, who outlines the history, tactics, arms and armour of the period.

Hungary and the Fall of Eastern Europe, 1000-1568

Hungary and the Fall of Eastern Europe, 1000-1568

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 24/03/1988

Although not widely studied in the West, the medieval history of south-eastern Europe is both fascinating and complex. The Kingdom of Hungary was a vast realm, at least the size of France, that endured throughout the Middle Ages whilst the Byzantine Empire was even more extensive and enduring. The Serbians won themselves a brief but extensive local empire in the 14th century; while the Bulgarians established an effective and cultured state. Other players in the confusing Balkan scene included the Albanians; Wallachians; Moldavians; Transylvanians; Croatians and many others. How did they organise their armies and fight their wars; and why did they ultimately fail? This title answers these questions ably supported by numerous illustrations and eight colour plates.

The Normans

The Normans

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 22/01/1987

Osprey's study of the Normans during the Middle Ages. Despite the small geographic extent of Normandy its people played a crucial role in the history of the medieval world. Ferocity, boundless energy, cunning and a capacity for leadership were their heritage, to which modern scholars would add supreme adaptability and a simple piety. Their amazing military successes resulted from careful planning, speed of movement, decisiveness, daring and sheer ruthlessness. Added to this was a strong business sense and an appreciation of the value of money. Veteran Osprey author David Nicolle describes the history, arms and armour of the remarkable Normans in this fascinating volume.

Saladin and the Saracens Armies of the Middle East, 1100-1300

Saladin and the Saracens Armies of the Middle East, 1100-1300

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/03/1986

Salah al Din Yusif ibn Ayyub, known to his Muslim contemporaries as al Nasi, 'The Victorious', and to an admiring Europe as Saladin, is the most famous single figure in the history of the Crusades, being even better known outside the English-speaking world than his Christian foe Richard the Lionheart. Traditionally portrayed as a quiet, deeply religious and even humble man, Saladin was a typical product of his day and his culture. This title shows how the societies and military systems that he and his successors led from defeat to eventual triumph were far more sophisticated than is generally realised, and brings vividly to life the history, organisation, arms and armour of Saladin and the Saracens.

The Age of Charlemagne Warfare in Western Europe, 750-1000 AD

The Age of Charlemagne Warfare in Western Europe, 750-1000 AD

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/07/1984

Most historians agree that the Carolingian Age, from the 8th to the 10th Century AD, represented one of the most important turning points in European history. It can be said with some certainty that early Carolingian military success was built on good leadership, adequate administration, and troops whose morale was almost consistently superb. It is also clear that the Carolingian army managed to adapt itself to face many and differing foes. This absorbing text by David Nicolle explores the organization and history of the Carolingian Empire during the age of one of history's most romanticised and heroic figures - Charlemagne.

Arthur and the Anglo-Saxon Wars Anglo-Celtic Warfare, A.D.410-1066

Arthur and the Anglo-Saxon Wars Anglo-Celtic Warfare, A.D.410-1066

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/03/1984

The Arthurian Age; the Celtic Twilight; the Dark Ages; the Birth of England; these are the powerfully romantic names often given to one of the most confused yet vital periods in British history. It is an era upon which rival Celtic and English nationalisms frequently fought. It was also a period of settlement, and of the sword. This absorbing volume by David Nicolle transports us to an England shrouded in mystery and beset by savage conflict, a land which played host to one of the most enduring figures of our history - Arthur.

Armies of the Ottoman Turks, 1300-1774

Armies of the Ottoman Turks, 1300-1774

Author: David Nicolle Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/07/1983

The birth of the Ottoman state is shrouded in legend. Whatever the truth of its origins, the Ottomans formed an Empire which almost succeeded in bringing Christian Europe to its knees. During the last decades of the 13th century, the ambitious Osman Bey's tiny mountain state took eight frontier castles plus the Turkish town of Eskisehir. In 1299 Osman seized Yenisehir after working up the Kara Su valley. With this as its first real capital, the Ottoman state emerged into history poised above the fertile shores of the Sea of Marmara.

Italian Mediaeval Armies, 1300-1500

Italian Mediaeval Armies, 1300-1500

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 24/03/1983

Mercenaries were a common feature throughout most of Europe in the 14th and 15th centuries, and had been known far earlier. But nowhere did such a sophisticated system of hiring, payment and organisation of mercenaries develop as it did in Italy. The condottiere - whose name came from the condotta or contract between himself and his employer - was the result. Whether commander or humble trooper, the condottiere was a complete professional. His skill has never been doubted, but his loyalty and dedication to a particular cause often has. David Nicolle provides a fascinating exploration of the condottiere; his roles, arms and equipment.

The Armies of Islam, 7th-11th Centuries

The Armies of Islam, 7th-11th Centuries

Author: David Nicolle Format: Paperback Release Date: 29/07/1982

During the Middle Ages, Islam was Christian Europe's only civilized and most troublesome neighbor. The Middle Ages saw almost continual strife between these two distinct cultures. By the time the Frankish Crusaders reached the Middle East at the end of the 11th century, Islam had already incorporated three major races: Arabs, Persians and Turks, each of which contributed different strengths to the armoury of Islam. This title explores the organization, uniforms and equipment of the armies of Islam from the 7th to 11th centuries, backed by illustrations, museum photographs and eight full page color plates by popular Osprey artist Angus McBride.

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