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Book Review of The Business of War: Military Enterprise and Military Revolution in Early Modern Europe

Interesting title I was unaware of. As with other ‘revisionist studies,’ the devil is in the details. I thus look forward to reading it at some point. Many thanks for the book review Dr Young.

International History

David Parrott. The Business of War: Military Enterprise and Military Revolution in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012. ISBN 978-0-521-51483-5. Figures. Maps. Notes. Bibliography. Index. Pp. xvii, 429. $80.00.

Dr David Parrott, a Fellow and Lecturer at New College, University of Oxford, provides a revisionist study concerning private contractors or military enterprisers and their role in early modern warfare. He is known for articles on the Thirty Years War (1618-1648), the Military Revolution in Early Modern Europe, and his outstanding study Richelieu’s Army: War, Government and Society in France, 1624-1642 (2001).

Early modern historians have traditionally stressed the transition from rulers and warlords relying on military contractors and mercenaries in the fifteenth century to the establishment of state-recruited and state-administered standing armies in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. This has been seen as part of the Military Revolution in early modern Europe. Parrott, however, challenges this…

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