Marshal Joffre

The Triumphs, Failures and Controversies of France's Commander-in-Chief in the Great War

André Bourachot

Date Published :
August 2014
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781783461653
Pages : 240
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
Also available digitally:
Buy From Amazon Amazon
Buy From Apple Apple
Buy From Barnes and Noble Barnes & Noble
Buy From Google Google
Buy From Kobo Kobo

Casemate will earn a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking a link here


A century ago General Joffre, as Chief of the French General Staff, led the armies that blocked the German invasion at the First Battle of the Marne. He saved Paris from occupation and France from probable defeat. His calm demeanor when faced with a disaster, his ruthless dismissal of incompetent subordinates, and his skilled redeployment of his forces contributed to a historic victory. At the time many saw him as the savior of the nation, but what should we make of him now?

His conduct of the war after the Marne – futile offensives that cost thousands of lives and gained no ground, followed by near defeat at Verdun – undermined his position and led to his dismissal.

Although he remained immensely popular in France, his reputation has been under a cloud ever since, and he has been overshadowed by the French generals – Petain who commanded the French army and Foch the allied Forces – at the time of the final victory over Germany.

André Bourachot, in this lucid and highly readable study of Joffre’s career, focuses on his performance during the opening phase of the Great War. He offers a fresh and carefully considered view of the man and the soldier.


"Bourachot, a general and specialist in the French army, traces the period when General Joseph Jacques C'saire Joffre was Chief of the General Staff and Commander-in-Chief designate for France prior to and during World War I, from 1911 until his removal and appointment as Marshal of France in 1916. He documents the events of his military career and why he made the decisions he did while in power, including his appointment and criticisms of him, the responsibility he held for drafting the regulations and for the development of the French army's doctrine, the development of the war plans, problems he faced in preparing for the war, the Battle of the Frontiers, the relationship between Joffre and Gallini, the events of 1915-1916, the Battle of Verdun, the political campaign against him, and the dismissal of his generals."

- ProtoView

More from this publisher