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Evolution of warfare in the war of the professionals

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Katrin Endrikat Evolution of warfare in the war of the professionals Warfare is defined as the use of physical force to settle disputes between organized groups. Fighting war ensures the use of weapons, strategy, logistics, training, and discipline, but also relies on political strategy. (from a dictionary) In the 17th century the wealth from the Dutch enabled them to keep their forces under arms throughout the year. They paid their soldiers regularly they could make them do two things: dig (self-evident) and drill (fire power), which were very important activities in increasing power of defence. Sleeves of protective shot become normal in the 16th century. Musketeers were countermarching in their files and were able to always give fire continuously. ...read more.


Discipline was severe and enforced by courts martial. His army was able to move without the vast concourse of camp followers. On the battlefield they made their rate of fire and reloading so rapid that the depth of infantry formations could be reduced from ten deep to six or even less. Instead of practising the ineffective caracole they learned how to use the "arme blanche" in other words, how to charge with the sword in a disciplined mass. Gustavus especially focused on the problem of immobility. A Swedish ironmaster, Louis de Geer, discovered, that the cannons' length could be halved without any decrease in their effectiveness. A development in the 17th century was mobile field artilleries, guns that could be moved easily. ...read more.


The really significant changes took place in the structure of the armies themselves and of the states which employed them. The Bourbon monarchy developed a fully functioning military mechanism. Bankruptcy, indiscipline and corruption were the characteristics of French armies until Louis XIV became to power. European wars in the 18th century were conducted by a professional army, similar to the ones today. Officers were not primarily members of a warrior caste fighting from a concept of honour or of feudal obligation, nor were they contractors doing a job for anyone who would pay them. They were servants of the state who were guaranteed regular employment, regular wages, dedicated themselves to the service of the state. The development of state power and organization made professional forces possible as well as military practice and technology which made them essential. ...read more.

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