Cannae [Illustrated Edition]
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Over 100 maps and diagrams are included.
Field-Marshal Alfred Graf von Schlieffen had a long and distinguished career in the Prussian military service, although he initially eschewed a military life despite being the son of a Prussian officer. However in completing his one year compulsory military service in 1853 he was picked as an outstanding candidate for officer selection, and so began a fifty-three year career in the German military. As one of the foremost of a new generation of officers around the time of Prussian expansionism and the birth of a federal Germany, he was to experience much warfare first-hand. After graduating with honours from the famed Prussian Kriegsakadamie, the cradle of such military men of the standard of Clausewitz, Von Moltke, von Steinmetz, he was appointed to the planning unit of the German General Staff. He was to see the plans that he worked upon come to bloody but successful conclusions during the wars with Austria in 1866 and most famously the annihilation of French military force during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870. Schlieffen’s lasting impression on the world was his famous “Schlieffen Plan” which he designed to enable the German army to knock France out of a two front war by a huge flanking manoeuvre through the Low Countries.
Schlieffen was fascinated with the art of war and assiduously studied the campaigns of history from Alexander the Great to Napoleon, to divine a theory and practice of manoeuvring that would force the basis of enduring military success. As an esteemed teacher at the Kriegsakadamie, he set about to mould his students into disciples of his theory of war, in doing so he wrote extensively intending to commit all of his experience to paper. He most famous work was “Cannae”, intended to explain and illustrate the driving idea of the battle of encirclement that had achieved so much success throughout history. Using examples from the wars of Hannibal, Frederick the Great, Napoleon and the recent German led wars with Austria and France, he sets out how the encirclement and destruction of an enemy’s army should be achieved.
The book was seen as a watershed in military theory and was widely read across the world; to ensure that the ideas were disseminated to their students the American Army translated it into English. The effect of Schlieffen’s thinking was still felt by the senior officers that fought in the Second World War who were imbued with the principles of Cannae which would be so well defined as part of the German Blitzkrieg. No less a military leader but First Quartermaster General Erich Ludendorff, the principal German strategists of the First World War, declared that Schlieffen was “one of the greatest soldiers ever.” no mean testament to the man and his principal book.
smashing into it, while small white puffs hurled their contents on the parading soldiers of the Potsdam pleasaunce, marching undisturbed by the terrors hurled at them in unchanging cadence “right, left, right, left.” Were it only possible to save enough out of this fire to be able to start the combat with the needle gun. General von Kessel, the Brigade Commander called continuously “Forward, forward”; and “forward!” beat the drums; “forward” sounded the bugles, and forward went the Grenadiers, It
FRIEDLAND-TILSIT — June, 1807. Map 27. — MOVEMENTS FROM THE MIDDLE OF AUGUST TO THE END OF SEPTEMBER, 1813. Map 28. — MOVEMENTS FROM THE END OF SEPTEMBER, 1813, UNTIL THE BATTLE OF LEIPZIG. Map 29. — BATTLE OF LIEGNITZ — 15 August, 1760. Map 30. — CAMPAIGN IN THE NETHERLANDS 1815. Map 31. — BATTLE OF LIGNY — 16 June, 1815. Map 32. — BATTLE OF LIGNY — 16 June, 1815. Map 33. — BATTLE OF BELLE ALLIANCE (WATERLOO) — 18 June, 1815. Map 34. — GENERAL MAP OF THE AUSTRO-PRUSSIAN WAR 1866. Map
Grafentonna and then turning against the hostile left flank. He advanced, however, on the 27th against the center of the line and drove out the advanced troops left at Langensalza. Two of Knesebeck's battalions, sent out for support by way of Merxleben, were likewise driven back and the Judenhugel was occupied. This success did not give any special advantage for further attack. The Prussians found themselves before a long defile—the Kirchberg—and a river, bordered by dams. All was strongly
started the march as early as on the 2nd. Great marches had to be demanded of the left wing of the Second Army and of the Army of the Elbe. But, since the Landwehr Division of the Guard had made on that day 35 km, from Kopidlno to Nechanitz, the younger and better trained troops could have fulfilled the request in the highest degree. If not a complete, at least a partial surrounding could have been made on the 3rd. It would not have been rendered easier had the First Army stormed forward from the
corps had taken the direction of Weissenburg, the Bavarian I Corps marched also to that point. On 5 August of the four assembled corps, the Bavarian II Corps marched via Klimbach to Lembach, the 9th Division via Kleeburg, Drachenbronn, and Lobsann to Preuschdorf, the 10th Division and the XI Corps proceeded partly by marching and partly by rail to Sulz, followed by the Bavarian I Corps to Ingolsheim; Werder's Corps was brought to Aschbach, and the 4th Cavalry Division was to proceed along the