Napoleon Series Discussion Forum

Re: Lord Amherst & Those Damned Blankets

I am surprised that you still include the highlighted assertion in your survey of secondary sources. When in discussions, both here and in another place, it has been shown have little or no no historical basis. It evidently derives from a dubious statement in Cronin which has then been parroted by Pocock and others.

How did Pocock ‘parrot’ any statement from Cronin when he doesn’t even list Cronin as a source in his bibliography?

How is Cronin’s statement referred to above, ‘dubious’? Can you demonstrate how it is?

I think 'tertiary source' as a term is fair enough.

Do you not understand what a ‘tertiary source’ is? From your response it is quite obvious that you do not.

I would suggest taking a look at the following reference for the definitions of a primary, secondary, and tertiary source. I have found it to be quite helpful.

http://gethelp.library.upenn.edu/PORT/sources/primary_secondary_tertiary.html

For what seems to be a thorough investigation of the subject of the British intelligence effort and support for French opponents to the Republican and Imperial regimes, I recommend Elizabeth Sparrow, Secret Service: British Agents in France, 1792–1815, which I have just found. Detailed footnotes at the bottom of each page. No mention of guerrilla training camps.

Excellent idea and I had forgotten that book. The following might help:

Sparrow mentions that it was William Pitt that first organized the British ‘foreign secret service’, page xi:

‘Attack being the best form of defense, George III’s government under William Pitt very quickly also formed a foreign secret service for the support of counter-revolution in France…’
William Pitt’s knowledge of ‘The Grand Conspiracy’ as Sparrow names Chapter 15 in her book, is quite evident on page 278, regarding the ferrying and landing of Cadoudal and his confederates in France:
‘…this was after Wright had landed Cadoudal and his associates, following another of Le Moine’s requests to Nepean. This operations was certainly known to Addington and Hawkesbury, to the Smiths at Walmer and therefore to William Pitt…’

It is quite clear that the British aided the royalists/Bourbons in their attempts to destroy the French consular government and to murder Napoleon, both financially and materially with the use of the Royal Navy.
Lastly, I would suggest looking up the sourcing for Pocock, Cronin, Lloyd, and Horricks. You’ve taken time to attempt to excoriate these authors/historians but it doesn’t appear to me that you have supported that effort with actually finding where they got their information. Unless you do, you cannot prove them wrong.

Pocock uses both volumes of the Windham Papers, the two volumes of the private correspondence of Lord Granville Leveson Gower, The Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney (12 volumes), the Correspondence, Despatches, and Other Papers of Viscount Castlereagh, and Elizabeth Sparrow’s book among others.

Lloyd does not use Cronin, but used material from the Public Records Office, such as material from the Admiralty, the Home Office, and the War Office. All of that is manuscript material. Huerta used the Windham Papers and the Correspondence of William Wickham among others, such as the Publications of the Naval Records Society.

If you haven’t checked these and other sources listed in the authors’ bibliographies, I suggest that you cannot discount their conclusions on the subject. Which ones of the above references have you checked? Unless proven incorrect, I have the inclination to, at least initially, believe authors/historians who have done their homework.

And you didn’t answer the question that was put to you: did you read the material?

Lastly, if you have just ‘found’ Sparrow’s book, and obviously haven’t read it, how can you recommend it? Or have you read it before?

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Lord Amherst & Those Damned Blankets
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