Commando: A Boer Journal of the Boer War

Commando: A Boer Journal of the Boer War - Deneys Reitz

Commando: A Boer Journal of the Boer War


One of the most famous first-hand accounts of the Second Boer war, written by a soldier who served on the Boer commandos from the very first to the very last day of that conflict.

Reitz-who went on to have a distinguished career in the later Union of South Africa-starts out his book with a short description of his upbringing as the son of a President of the Boer republic of the Orange Free State.

From there, the book quickly moves into his recruitment into the Boer forces at the age of 17-after personally receiving permission from Transvaal President Paul Kruger to enrol in the Pretoria Commando.

Deployed to the Natal front, Reitz describes the early Boer victories and the battles in which he took part-including the famous Battle of Spion Kop-and the slow war of attrition as the British recovered from the initial defeats and conquered the Boer Republics.

The Boers however refused to surrender, and instead resorted to guerrilla tactics, harassing the British Army-now twice as large as the entire Boer population of the time-for two more years.

At the height of the guerrilla war, Reitz then describes how he struck south and joined up with Boer General Jan Smut's invasion of the Cape Colony. That surprise move remained an unmovable threat to the British right to the very end of the war, when the Boers were finally forced into submission after more than half of their civilian population were interred in concentration camps.

This new edition has been completely reset, contains the full original text and the introduction specially prepared for it by Jan Smuts. In addition, it contains 110 footnotes explaining terms, issues, and events for the present-day reader, in addition to the 5 original footnotes added by the author. Finally, this edition also contains short biographies of both the author and the preface writer.

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One of the most famous first-hand accounts of the Second Boer war, written by a soldier who served on the Boer commandos from the very first to the very last day of that conflict.

Reitz-who went on to have a distinguished career in the later Union of South Africa-starts out his book with a short description of his upbringing as the son of a President of the Boer republic of the Orange Free State.

From there, the book quickly moves into his recruitment into the Boer forces at the age of 17-after personally receiving permission from Transvaal President Paul Kruger to enrol in the Pretoria Commando.

Deployed to the Natal front, Reitz describes the early Boer victories and the battles in which he took part-including the famous Battle of Spion Kop-and the slow war of attrition as the British recovered from the initial defeats and conquered the Boer Republics.

The Boers however refused to surrender, and instead resorted to guerrilla tactics, harassing the British Army-now twice as large as the entire Boer population of the time-for two more years.

At the height of the guerrilla war, Reitz then describes how he struck south and joined up with Boer General Jan Smut's invasion of the Cape Colony. That surprise move remained an unmovable threat to the British right to the very end of the war, when the Boers were finally forced into submission after more than half of their civilian population were interred in concentration camps.

This new edition has been completely reset, contains the full original text and the introduction specially prepared for it by Jan Smuts. In addition, it contains 110 footnotes explaining terms, issues, and events for the present-day reader, in addition to the 5 original footnotes added by the author. Finally, this edition also contains short biographies of both the author and the preface writer.

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