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Sunday, 15 March 2020

A Mighty Tome

While it would overstating the case to say my latest purchase from Helion's "Century of the Soldier" series gave my postie a hernia- it was a near run thing. This one is a meaty tome of some 400 pages

More Like Lions than Men : Sir William Brereton and the Cheshire Army of Parliament, 1642-46

It is also rather good and very useful.
 My knowledge of the Civil War in Cheshire was limited to R.N. Dore's dated but useful - and rather slim volume  plus the various  snippets in those books one may tem "The Usual Suspects"- Reid, Rogers and suchlike.
 The meaty volume fills that gap admirably.
 Sir William Brereton's Cheshire Army - fighting for Parliament- had never previously been studied in such detail and there is no doubt Mr. Abraham knows his stuff. Not only is there a narrative of Brereton's campaigns but more substantially details of units and organisation as well as  how the Cheshire Army was raised and paid for.
 We find out that Cromwell was not the only officer to have a "double Regiment" of cavalry- Brereton's was also a large regiment- though it did tend to fight in smaller sub-units that Old Noll's Ironsides. The colour section contains illustrations of many of the Cornets of the individual  troops of Brereton's Regiment along with - amongst other photos a rather splendid one of a re-created Dragoon.
It may well be that my ECW figure collection will now gat a Cheshire continget- to fight the "Lings Irish"- when I get a hold of THAT volume.
  This one however is highly recommended.

 Coincidentally arriving on my doormat a few days late was my copy of JSAHR Journal for spring 2020 . If I was only allowed to keep one  set of magazines or Journals  and had to dump the rest  it would probably be this one. This Journal is at the top of the list that most  current wargames magazines are near the bottom of in terms of choice of magazine reading. While the Arquebusier- Journal of the Pike and Shot Society runs it close. The JSAHR journal  covers a wider timespan. This issue no 392 has articles on the ECW, WW1, The War of Austrian Succession and the War of 1812 and very particular and detailed for their specific subjects they are- I now know the names and heights of some of the Drummers in the Canadian Fencible regiment for example!. This is not a usual wargamers lightweight read but for those of us who like to delve a little deeper.


  1. Helion has been coming out with some really great titles of late. All that I have purchased have exceeded by expectations. The Century of the Soldier and From Reason to Revolution has been my focus (I am a Tricorn addict.) This time, I picked up one from Retinue to Regiment- The Army of the Swabian League 1525. My interest was peaked as I spent seven and a half years living in Stuttgart and have been to many of the places listed. I now can learn more about those places as this is the first english language explaination that I have found. Like I said, Helion has been cranking out some really great books here of late.

    Tom Dye
    in the USA

    1. Like you I have not- so far- been disappointed by any of the Helion titles I have bought in whatever period. Mostly but not always 17th century. I know Doug Miller slightly and when it comes to the Landsknechts and suchlike he knows his stuff and has a nice little range of 40mm figures too