Rebellion, Invasion and Occupation: The British Army in Ireland, 1793-1815 (From Reason to Revolution)
Helion and Company (October 15, 2021)
Paperback: 208 pages
The history of Ireland is complex, and has been plagued with religious, political, and military influences that have created divisions within its population. Ireland’s experience throughout the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars highlighted and intensified such divisions that have influenced Irish society into the twenty-first century. This body of work is an analysis of the British Army in Ireland during the period 1793 to 1815, which proved to be a critical era in British and Irish history. The consequences of the events and government policies of that time helped to determine the social and political divisions within Ireland for the following two centuries.
The intention of this book is to provide an analytical synthesis of the military history of Ireland during this time, focusing on the influences, experiences, and reputations of the various elements that comprised the Irish military forces. This revisionist study provides a holistic approach by assessing the militia, yeomanry, fencible, and regular regiments in relation to their intended purpose within Britain’s strategy. By focussing on deployment, organization, performance, leadership, and reputations, as well as political and military background, a number of perpetual misconceptions have been exposed, especially in relation to the negative historiography surrounding the Irish Militia and Yeomanry due to sectarian bias.
This work shows that Ireland became an important facet of the tactical and strategic thinking of both the French and British governments at this time, with Britain needing to defend the kingdom against any possible invasion to secure its own defense. This resulted in the British military occupation of a kingdom whose population had been polarized by civil rebellion, invasion, and renewed religious bigotry. A close examination of the military history of the kingdom during these crucial years provides a better understanding of how the Irish became, and remained, a socially and politically divided people, while being subjected to the political and military dominance of Britain.
Wayne Stack is a historian and published author who specialises in British and New Zealand military history, as well as New Zealand social history. He was a frontline member of the New Zealand Police for 18 years before deciding on a career change to follow his lifelong passion for military history. He subsequently gained three post-graduate degrees in History from the University of Canterbury, including an MA with Distinction. He has conducted extensive research and written academic theses on the British Army in Ireland during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic periods, as well as combat leadership in the New Zealand Expeditionary Forces of the First and Second World Wars, and has had two books published concerning the New Zealand Expeditionary Forces in the world wars. In 2014 he was contracted by WingNut Films (Sir Peter Jackson) as a historian for the world-renowned Great War Exhibition in Wellington, New Zealand. He was also engaged as the theming historian by the New Zealand Rugby Union for the Under 20 Rugby World Cup competition in England in 2016. He is currently the historian for the Canterbury Regimental History Centre at Burnham Military Camp, Christchurch.