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Military EngineersThe Development of the Early Modern European State$
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Bruce P. Lenman

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781845861209

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781845861209.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 26 May 2020

Introduction: Military Engineers from Polymath Courtiers to Specialist Troops

Introduction: Military Engineers from Polymath Courtiers to Specialist Troops

(p.1) Introduction: Military Engineers from Polymath Courtiers to Specialist Troops
Military Engineers

Bruce P. Lenman

Edinburgh University Press

There had been medieval specialist builders of fortifications, but in Renaissance Italy virtuoso military engineers were a response to the need to create new artillery-resistant fortifications after the devastating invasion of Italy by Charles VIII of France in 1494. Military engineers often had an artistic background. They were multi-tasking international hired guns who spent time on firework displays, canal construction, and town planning as well as fortification. Gradually, with the consolidation of early-modern warfare states cadres of specialist military engineers developed, but they were few in number, directing labour supplied by the infantry, and usually became self-contained combat engineers only late in the nineteenth century.

Keywords:   Artillery, Renaissance, multi-tasking, fireworks, combat engineers

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