On Maps and Manoeuvres: The Challenge of Mapping Waterloo

Kenton White

Abstract


This paper looks at the historical inertia which builds once a description of a battle has been put on paper and how that leads to that description being accepted unquestioningly and passed down from historian to historian, unaltered, without ever being touched by original research. By using original documents, this article uses an example from possibly the best documented battle of all times: Waterloo. This example shows how difficult it is to replicate a battle in a map. It also shows how, in some circumstance, the published maps are misleading rather than informative.


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