Hey For Old Robin!

The Campaigns And Armies of the Earl of Essex During the First Civil War, 1642-44

Chris Scott, Alan Turton

Date Published :
July 2017
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
Century of the Soldier
Illustration :
53 b/w ills, 8 colour drawings & photos, 17 b/w maps
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781911512219
Pages : 256
Dimensions : 9.75 X 7.25 inches
In stock


‘Hey For Old Robin!’ was the cry of the Earl of Essex’s army during the First Civil War as, contrary to modern popular belief, Robert Devereux was well-liked by the men he led. This book fills a gap in the literature of the Civil Wars, taking up the challenge to write a new history of Essex and his Army and examining the often-repeated view that he was a cautious dullard with little military skill. The two authors Christopher Scott and Alan Turton, both well known published military historians, present a more balanced view of Parliament’s first Lord General, bringing him out of the shadow of Cromwell. In doing so they are not afraid to bite the bullet of period and modern criticism of Essex as a strategist and tactician, as well as his reported failings as a man. Based on primary research, including site visits to scenes of his triumphs and disasters, they trace the story of the early campaigns, beginning with Edgehill, then Brentford and Turnham Green, the relief of Gloucester and the retreat to Newbury, the Siege of Reading, the Thames Valley Campaign, the disaster of Lostwithiel and the rebuilding of the army for Second Newbury. Whilst they leave the detailed examination of the various battles fought by Essex and his men to more specialist books, they tell the story of each of the campaigns and share their thoughts on Essex’s problems and his decisions and actions. They also examine how the armies were constituted, officered, recruited and maintained, as well as its reductions and transfers. In separate chapters they describe Essex’s Foot, the Horse, the Dragoons, The Artillery and The Train, dealing with what the army wore, what it was paid, what weapons it used, the flags it carried and how it was organised, operated and fought. All this is set within a sound understanding and appreciation of the background of the seventeenth century and Essex’s place in the socio-political zeitgeist as well as period military thinking and practice. Illustrated with a wealth of seldom-seen contemporary engravings of Essex’s officers and friends and newly commissioned maps, as well as uniform and cornets & colours plates, this work is of great use to anyone with an interest in our civil wars including academics, local historians, re-enactors and wargamers.

About The Author

Christopher Scott and Alan Turton have been working together on civil war projects since 1975 when they were consecutive commanding officers of the Roundhead Association Devereux’s Regiment; Chris became the Lord General of the Army. Chris is a published military historian & his previous books include: The Maligned Militia, The Battles of Newbury, The Armies & Uniforms of the Monmouth Rebellion and Oudenarde, and they first collaborated in writing Edgehill, The Battle Re-interpreted with Dr. Eric Gruber von Arni. Chris has been a director of a Further Education college and the Head of Education at the Royal Armouries in the Tower of London. Being retired Chris now gives lectures and talks to academic conferences and local history groups, specialising in the civil wars and the Monmouth Rebellion. He has appeared in numerous films and TV documentaries. Being steeped in ECW history they were approached by Helion to undertake a second collaboration on the Earl of Essex to fill a longstanding gap in the canon of published work on civil war generals and their armies.


"A brilliant account of the life and times of the Earl of Essex, one of Crowell's right-hand men during the second civil war. The authors succeed in bringing to life this much neglected figure and his armies in exquisite and minute detail. A tour de force of British civil war history - one of the best books I've read on the subject."

- Books Monthly

"A stimulating book that will encourage readers to research Essex's battles further.”

- Miniature Wargames

"This book is a valuable addition to the literature on the subject, and well worth its purchase price.”

- Battlefield Magazine

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