The English Garrison of Tangier

Charles II’s Colonial Venture in the Mediterranean, 1661-1684

Andrew Abram

This book explores the creation, experience, composition, and withdrawal of Charles II's military garrison and colony of Tangier in Morocco, between 1661 and 1684. It is based upon up-to-date research and mainly unpublished material.
Date Published :
March 2022
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
Century of the Soldier
Illustration :
43 b/w ills, 4 b/w photos, 9 maps, 53 tables
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Paperback
ISBN : 9781915070326
Pages : 382
Dimensions : 9.75 X 7 inches
Stock Status : Available


Based on primary archival research and published sources, the proposed work represents a focused, and modern assessment of the raising, equipping and composition of the standing army of Charles II, and the role played by the garrison of Tangier between 1661 and 1684. When Charles landed in Dover in 1660 he inherited two regular armies, both owing him allegiance – the New Model (by then regular or standing army) in England under Monck; and the force of exiled royalists in Flanders and the garrison of Dunkirk. Neither army was in particularly rude health, being much in arrears of pay, and although the former remained on paper an effective power, its morale was broken by the events leading to the Restoration. The latter (Charles II’s ‘forgotten army’), was a body of Irish, Scottish and English soldiers in exile, fighting with the Spanish, and habituated to periods of hardship and privation. The acquisition of the Moroccan city of Tangier via the marriage agreement between Charles II and Catherine of Braganza, daughter of John IV of Portugal, in May 1661 brought about a period of English occupation, which lasted until 1684. England garrisoned and fortified the city against hostile Barbary forces.

The English Garrison of Tangier examines in detail the raising, equipping and composition of Charles II’s army, with particular emphasis on the occupation and siege of Tangier, during a period regarded today by some historians as one of the emergence of ‘British colonialism’ and trade, but also within the wider military, political and strategic context of expansionism and warfare in Europe and beyond. As such, the book not only adds significantly to our knowledge of the army of Charles II and the campaign in Tangier, but will appeal to anyone with an interest in the wars of the mid and late seventeenth century, and European expansionism in a wider context, including academics, local historians, re-enactors and wargamers.

About The Author

Having joined the British Army in 1978 aged sixteen, Dr Andrew Abram served as a regular soldier in various theatres, including the South Atlantic. In 1997 he discovered that he could attend university, graduating with a first-class honours degree in history at the University of Wales, Lampeter three years later. In 2007 he was awarded his doctorate by the same institution, being employed there as a teaching fellow and lecturer in medieval history until 2015. Andrew has subsequently acted as an associate lecturer in history at Manchester Metropolitan University, and historical consultant to museums and local groups. He has researched, written about, and taught on medieval and early-modern warfare, and contributed journal articles and book chapters on related topics. More recently, Dr Abram’s research interests in the civil war in Cheshire, the northwest of England and the Welsh borders, as well as seventeenth-century conflicts more generally, continues, and he is currently working on a studies of the 1659 Booth Rebellion, and Charles II’s army and Tangier for Helion & Company. Andrew lives with his family in the Peak District, where he enjoys travelling, reading crime and naval adventure novels, brewing beer,climbing, hiking, and training for pilgrimages to holy sites.

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