In the preceding volume the narrative of the South African Campaign was carried on from the close of the Black Week down to Lord Roberts’s entry into Bloemfontein, from the depth of defeat to, perhaps, the most signal and complete moment of triumph in the war. The present volume covers the rest of the operations conducted under the chief command of Lord Roberts. It is a period, viewed broadly, of almost continuous success. In it Lord Roberts’s victorious armies march from end to end of the republics, occupy all the chief towns, and make themselves masters of the whole system of railways; it opens with wholesale surrenders of burghers and closes with the dispersal of the last organised Boer army. Yet that success is from time to time marred by regrettable minor incidents, and, as the event proved, it lacked the quality of completeness. The essential object of all war, the imposition of the will of one people upon another by breaking its spirit of resistance, was not attained. Crushing and conclusive victory in the field alone could have achieved that result. But was such victory attainable? Was it excluded from the first by the inherent characteristics of the campaign, by the mobility of the Boers, by their disinclination to make any determined stand? Or must we infer that, in the comparatively easy and successful accomplishment of what after all are only secondary means of attaining the great object of war, the capture of positions, the occupation of capitals, the control of communications and material resources, means, moreover, whose efficacy must vary greatly according to the adversary’s military, economic, and political organisation, the only primary and certain means, the destruction of the enemy’s forces, was too much left out of sight or only half-heartedly  essayed? It is for the reader to judge for himself: this volume will supply him with ample material for his judgement.

The composition of the present volume differs from that of its predecessors to the extent that, whereas in the former volumes the actual narrative as it appeared, though based on the contributions of various collaborators, was mainly written by myself, I have in the present case confined myself strictly to the purely editorial task of criticism and suggestion. The volume as it stands is the work of Mr. Basil Williams, and he is responsible alike for the accuracy of the detailed facts record and for the judgements and criticisms expressed. This delegation of a difficult, laborious, and responsible task has made it possible to publish, within a year of its predecessor, a volume which it has taken fully two years of continuous effort to write.

L.S. Amery. The Temple, May 13, 1906

Only 1 left in stock

SKU: 13873 Categories: , ,


Edited by L.S. Amery, general editor, and Basil Williams. Published by Sampson Low, Marston and Company of London in 1906. Hard cover bound, this First Edition copy is in Fair condition, covered in plastic and without a dust jacket. The size of the book is 232x160x64mm.

xviii plus 597pp. The covers only are Fair due to water damage on spine. (This vol needs to be restored, which will be done only upon sale so there will be some slight delay.) There is some light staining and foxing limited mostly to the prelims. Nowhere has the text been affected in any way. The rest of the book appears unread and would rate as Good +. Top edge gilt, otherwise edges rough cut. 2 folded maps, in fine condition in pockets; 17 folding maps in green and red, 17 b&w photog plates with tissue guards = complete in all respects. Please see our # 13869 , 13870 for uniform volumes I and V. Extra postage will be required overseas.