A History of War in 100 Battles

By Richard Overy

A history of warfare distilled into 100 momentous battles – epic moments that have shaped our world.

From the earliest recorded skirmishes of the ancient world to the computerized conflicts of today, renowned military historian Richard Overy dramatically brings to life the sights and sounds of the most significant battles in world history: the flash of steel, the thunder of guns, the shrieks of the dying, and the strange, eerie calm that descends on the bloodstained battlefield when the fighting is done.

Each of the 100 battles featured in the book – from the Fall of Troy to Operation Desert Storm – shows how the nature of armed combat has changed as technology, strategy and tactics have evolved over time.

Yet, equally strikingly, the outcome of almost all the battles across the ages have been decided by the same mix of leadership, courage, deception, innovation and, time and again, a moment of good fortune. Rather than arranged chronologically, the battles are organized under these different themes to reveal surprising connections across centuries and cultures.

In Richard Overy’s own words, ‘Battle is not a game to plug into a computer but a piece of living history: messy, bloody and real.’ Whatever else has changed over the last few millennia, that much remains the same.

Format: Hardback
Release Date: 23 Oct 2014
Pages: 384
ISBN: 978-0-00-745250-7
Professor Richard Overy was educated at Caius College, Cambridge. He taught at Cambridge from 1972 to 1979 at Queens\' College and from 1976-79 as a University Assistant Lecturer. From 1980 to 2004 he taught at King\'s College, London where he was made professor of Modern History in 1994. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (1977), Fellow of the British Academy (2000) and Fellow of King\'s College (2003). In 2001 he was awarded the Samuel Eliot Morison Prize of the Society for Military History for his contribution to the history of warfare. In September 2004 he took up appointment as Professor of History at the University of Exeter. He has published over twenty books on the genre, and is the editor of the bestselling The Times Complete History of the World.

Praise for ‘The Times Complete History of the World’: -

”'One of the great works of historical reference in the English language. If you were allowed only one history book in the whole of your life, The Times Complete History of the World would be hard to beat because it conveys a sense not only of time, but also of place” - Niall Ferguson, Professor of History, Harvard University.

”'Wonderfully told history … comprehensive and utterly accessible” - Jon Snow

Praise for ‘The Bombing War: Europe 1939-1945’: -

”'This is a tough, hardheaded and meticulous work of military history … worth reading” - Dan Jones Telegraph Books of the Year

”'Magnificent … must now be regarded as the standard work on the bombing war … It is probably the most important book published on the history of he second world war this century” - Guardian

”'Monumental … this is a major contribution to one of the most controversial aspects of the Second World War … full of new detail and perspectives … hugely impressive” - Literary Review

”'This tremendous book does what the war it describes signally failed to do. With a well-thought-out strategy and precision, it delivers maximum force on its objectives … The result is a masterpiece of the historian's art” - The Times

”'My book of the year … A staggering amount of research … provides a sober and realistic assessment of [the bombings'] impact on the warring nations and on the civilians who bore the brunt of its impact … It's hard to imagine a more thorough account: a masterpiece” - Richard J Evans New Statesman Books of the Year