Citizen Soldiers and the Key to the Bastille by Julia Osman

By Julia Osman

Showcasing French participation within the Seven Years' warfare and the yank Revolution, this e-book indicates the French military on the center of progressive, social, and cultural switch. Osman argues that efforts to remodel the French military right into a citizen military sooner than 1789 brought on and assisted in shaping the French Revolution.

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Example text

Partisan tactics further complicated ideas of limited warfare, because they comprised an important part of pre-empting possible conflict and securing French borders. 36 Not only would this support their own advance, but protect their bordering provinces from having to undergo the same treatment by enemy forces. It is important to note, however, that these areas would not be entirely destroyed and burned to the ground, but weakened and sapped of resources only to the point where the area would be incapable of hosting another army.

As the officer corps expanded, it also increased the number of people vying for resources, which overtaxed the state and created problems with budgets and officer expectations. While Louis XIV wanted to reward nobles for winning gloire for himself and the state, his system gradually transformed into one that required constant exhibition. Officer competition created friction in the army and decreased its effectiveness. When it came to the soldiers, Louis XIV’s changes to the army faired a little better.

34 During the Dutch War, Louvois, Louis XIV’s minister of war, directly ordered an increase in the frequency and intensity of the raids on villages in 1675 and 1676, when he was pushing the war to a close. 35 Calculated suffering of civilians therefore comprised part of the overall French strategy to bring long or costly wars to a close. In such ways, these methods both contradicted and supported the concept of limited warfare, and provided the French army with some familiarity with petite guerre or partisan tactics, even before they were institutionalized or officially adopted into the army.

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