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Histoire de la Milice franÃ§oise, et des - DANIEL, Gabriel - 1721. 
70 engraved plates. 3 p.l., xxxviii, 626 pp.; xx, 770 pp., one leaf of errata, approbation, & privilege. Two vols. Large thick 4to, fine cont. polished tree calf (head of spine of Vol. I very slightly chipped, minor foxing), spines richly gilt, red morocco lettering pieces on spines. Paris: D. Mariette et al., 1721. First edition and a splendid set from the Macclesfield library. Daniel (1649-1728), a Jesuit historian, wrote an extremely successful history of France which first appeared in 1713 and a number of other works of history and commentaries on the writings of Descartes. This is the standard work on the history of militias in France which had played such an important role in the earlier history of that country. Before 1688, France has three kinds of organized military forces which were not professional in character nor employed full-time: the urban militia, the militia active in the countryside, and the militia protecting the coast line and borders. By the end of the 17th century, the introduction of firearms began to favor the professional soldier and militias began to lose their effectiveness. Increased fire power - muskets, pistols, and cannons - became the domain of the highly trained professional soldier. In 1688, FranÃ§ois de Louvois, the secretary of war for Louis XIV, created royal militias to serve as auxiliary forces to the professional army. Their roles were partly to find drafts for and partly to augment the regular army. The plates depict battle formations, weaponry, devices used in sieges, fortified cities, other fortifications, bombs, uniforms of the various militias, etc. Fine and handsome set from the Macclesfield library with embossed stamp on titles and the North Library bookplate. Engraved armorial bookplate of Lt. Gen. G.L. Parker, the fourth Earl of Macclesfield. ? Brunet, II, 487-"Ouvrage rempli de recherches curieuses.".
[Bookseller: Jonathan A. Hill, Bookseller, Inc.]
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