Author: David A Wilson
Helion Books – From Reason to Revolution Series No. 48
ISBN 9781913118914 published 2020
131 pp 43 Colour Illustrations
The Danish Army of the later Napoleonic wars (post 1807) whilst allied to France, is not one that has been studied in English to any great extent regarding their uniforms, equipment and organisation and happily this publication ably fills this gap. It is the first volume of three and this particular volume specifically covers the high command and the infantry, how the rest is covered in the two further volumes yet to come is unfortunately not made clear.
This volume includes a historical background for those unfamiliar with the history of the twin Kingdoms of Denmark and Norway (equal partners under one crown) and the recruitment system, length of service and such. It then covers in separate chapters, the uniforms, equipment and organisation of the High command, the Life Guards, the Line Infantry and the Jaegercorps. In each section the Danish troops are described in great detail and at the end of each chapter the Norwegian troops are mentioned in lesser detail, highlighting the differences where they existed, in order to avoid tiresome repetition. It is obvious that this book has been written by and primarily for wargamers, with a profusion of beautifully detailed colour drawings of uniforms from both front and rear. Another chapter covers infantry Colours with a large number of colour illustrations of individual regiments Colours.
There are also eight appendices, covering such varied topics as a list of soldier’s personal equipment, Danish ranks and their British equivalents, Danish military music, Danish muskets, Food rations, The Battle of Koge, Orders of Battle of the Danish Auxiliary Corps and a simple list of Danish Military paintings and their whereabouts.
The main disappointment for this reader, was that the Danish Militia and Landvaern are not covered, particularly as they formed the majority of the Danish forces at Koge, it is hoped that they are covered in a future volume. It is a further disappointment that the appendix on the Battle of Koge is very sparsely covered indeed and could have been much better presented.
The book overall however, is extremely well presented and beautifully illustrated with uniforms and Colours and is very comprehensive in its coverage of the units included. It is clearly written by an avid wargamer and the book will most likely appeal to fellow wargamers who are looking for the real detail necessary to produce a colourful and novel wargaming army to impress his colleagues.
Gareth Glover June 2020