Here is last year's final chapter, leading into our 1693 adventures....
|Infamy! The English Life Guards treacherously turn on the Gardes te Voet|
The guile of the Lord Lucan in persuading the venal Kirke combined with the grit of the brave Irish soldiers to serve up a delicious victory in the cause of the true King and the true religion– This is the tale King James’s counsellors would have us swallow whole for our supper. Some but not all of this purple prose can be ascribed to men boasting in their cups some is also largely true yet something is missing from the Caesarian style jubilees.
|Famous regiments like Oxford's went down fighting|
What mention of Lord Marlborough ? Was it not his volunteer infantry from the ancient shire of Oxford that threw themselves upon the hot fire from the Danes within the village fortress of Netherhythe? Did not he, the architect of triumph at Kinsale and Cork conceive to deliver a wondrous flanking manoeuvre around the right of the enemy to come upon their rear, destroy their trayne, burn their powder and scatter their shot? And, with this masterstroke he truly did deprive them of the will to continue the fight and thus ultimately gift to his true King that which proved impossible before now?A glaring and to most dispassionate commentators, deliberate omission from the official accounts of the victory are the casualties borne by My Lord Marlborough’s volunteer army. One thousand and seven hundred of his men were lost at the battle. Only the King’s son James Fitzjames was able to surpass this sacrifice at the altar of Mars and that but through a blunt frontal assault against the Danish mercenaries whose discipline and well dug positions made progress bloody and slow.
|Tollemache's camp ransacked by Marlborough's militia cavalry on their flanking manoeuvre|
The losses sustained by Sheldon, Sarsfield and Hamilton combined barely surpassed those of Marlborough alone which is why, supporters of the gallant Earl smart visibly when the ‘Irish’ victory is trumpeted. Having delivered such a gift, the hero is derided as a traitor, denounced by the King’s bastard and confined to a life of imprisonment first in Dublin and now, with a more sinister turn in St Germain-en- laye.
The battle for the throne is not ended. New agendas emerge from the depths of winter. The spring breezes blow away the smoke of intrigue which fugs the air of long closed and reeking apartments.
‘To war !’is the cry in England, in Scotland, in Ireland and further afield.
The throne of England and the chance of future world domination is the great prize!