Book Review- Logistics of Warfare in the Age of the Crusade

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Book Review- Logistics of Warfare in the Age of the Crusade

Postby brendan on Mon Feb 15, 2010 1:05 pm

I bought this book as the title and outline of topics caught my attention. I have often wondered what it would take to move an army from place to place in the Crusade I know
The book lived up to and even exceeded my expectations
This book represents the proceedings of a conference on medieval logistics. It is definitely a specialist read, but has lots of amazing information on what it took to move an army from a to b in this time period.

I would strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in the Crusades and how war was waged at that time


Logistics of Warfare in the Age of the Crusade
Edited by John H. Pryor, published by Ashgate, ISBN 0 7546 41975[/url]

Table of Contents includes:
Introduction: Modelling Bohemond's march to Thessaloniké. The author works out how much ground the army covered and what this meant in terms of supply and resupply using older and more modern treatises on logistics to work out the details.
The logistics of the Mongol-Mamlúk war, with special reference to the battle of Wadi 'l Khaznadar, 1299 CE. This was interesting as it addresses the limitation that logistics puts on an army operating in a region.
Crusader logistics: from victory at nicaea to resupply at Dorylaion. This focuses on a particular element of this campaign and how it was supplied with a particular reference to the role of the Byzantines.
Ship types and fleet composition at Genoa and Venice in the early 13th Century. This looks at the type of ships that were available and the influence of this on the ships used both for military action and transport of armies.
Logistics and the Second Crusade. This looks at the organisation of those that went over land and another group who went by sea but got distracted by a separate war against the Muslims of Portugal.
Harbours and Sea Lanes along the eastern mediterranean to Outremer. This looks at the ports used and how they were able to deal with the traffic caused by a Crusader fleet - and the knock on impact that had on the journey itself.
Provisioning Peter the Hermit: From Cologne to Constantinople 1096. This looks at how this particular Crusade managed to feed itself and what this meant for the lands it passed through - particularly those in the Byzantine sphere of influence.
Roads and Communications in the Byzantine empire: Wagons horses and supplies. This starts out with an assessment of the size of armies, moves on to the limitations on their movement as a result of the quality of the roads and then offers different options on the size of baggage train required to support different sized armies.
Reflections on maps, Crusading and logistics. This looks at the type of maps that people had available to them and their actual awareness of the physical world in which they lived as an input into how campaigns were planned and executed.
Infantry in Muslim Armies during the Crusades. This looks at the change of composition from mainly infantry to mainly Cavalry, why it happened and the impact on how armies operated.
Food and Fourth Crusade: a new approach to the 'Diversion Question'. This puts forward the notion that because less people turned up than were supposed to, it could not afford to pay for the transport and food. As a result they ended up working off the balance conquering on behalf of Venice until the point where they got involved in an internal power struggle in Byzantium in order to provision themselves.
Money and logistics in the forces of the First Crusade: Coinage, bullion, service and supply, 1096-1099. This looks at how exactly the armies raised enough silver to pay their way, how they transported it and exchanged it for local currencies and then the impact of market forces on what they were forced to pay for food in particular.
The Northern Crusaders: the logistics of English and other Northern Crusader fleets. This looks at crusaders from northern Europe and their sea based journeys, how they got distracted by other wars and how most of them lost their fleets to woodworm in the warm waters of the mediteranean. Not quite finished this bit.
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