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New Review: Armies of the Great Northern War 1700-1720

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Review Author: 
Dave Morrissette
Osprey Publishing

Osprey is renowned for their concise histories of the rarer conflicts around the globe. This edition covering "Armies of the Great northern War:1700-1720) is just such an edition, covering the Great Northern War which was fought in the Baltic region and ranged all the way from Norway to southern Ukraine. In the end, it led to the destruction of the Swedish Empire acquisitions in the war of 1618-48 as well as transformation of Russia under Peter the Great. The book is 48 pages in the standard Osprey size and is illustrated with color plates, maps and text describing all the combatants and battles.

Chapters included are:

  • Introduction
  • Chronology
  • The Russian Army
  • The Swedish Army
  • The Saxon Army
  • The Polish and Lithuanian Armies
  • The Danish and Norwegian Armies
  • The Hanoverian Armies
  • The Prussian Army
  • The Holstein Army
  • Cossack, Tatars and Danubian Principalities
  • Select Bibliography
  • Plate Comments
  • Index

From a history perspective the chronology, with a map from 1700 to 1720, details the skirmishes of the conflict as well as highlighted historical points and people. The remainder of the book covers each individual army, the number of combatants, their composition, and other details.

For example, looking at the section on the Hanoverian Army, it starts with a discussion of the history of the duchies involved and their combining to the Duchy of Hanover. It follows with a breakdown of the regiments and battalions supplied and type of troops they were such as Dragoons, line infantry etc. to give the reader a feel for the size of the fighting force. This general format is repeated for each army.

Each group is represented in smaller pictures but also in wonderful full color plates with a commentary section in the back describing each soldier and his uniform. The soldiers are numbered by plat to avoid confusion. I included four of these plates as examples. The artwork is stunning and great reference for figure painters. 

Whether you are history buff, figure painter or just looking for a good read, this book has you covered and is most definitely recommended. 

My thanks to Osprey Publishing for the opportunity to review it!

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