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Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington.

The man who defeated Napoleon.

But who was he?

Born in 1769 in Dublin, Wellington was commissioned as an ensign in the British Army in 1787.

His early military and political career saw him serving as aide-de-camp to two successive Lords Lieutenant of Ireland, and sitting as a Member of Parliament in the Irish House of Commons.

By 1796, he had been promoted to colonel and had seen his first action in the Netherlands before shipping out to India, where he fought in the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War at the Battle of Seringapatam.

Appointed governor over Seringapatam and Mysore, Wellesley won his first significant victory in 1803 at the Battle of Assaye.

During the Peninsular Wars in Portugal and Spain, Wellesley famously battered the French at Vittoria, Salamanca and Badajoz.

With Napoleon’s exile to Elba in 1814, Wellington’s duties shifted from war to diplomacy; awarded a dukedom for services performed, he served as the ambassador to France until Napoleon’s escape returned him to the battlefield for one more decisive victory.

After Waterloo, Wellington returned to England and to politics, serving as the British Prime Minister and as a leading figure in the House of Lords. He was Commander-in-Chief of the British Army until his death.

First published in 1889, Wellington explores the life of the military and political leader by tracing the experiences and paths that led Wellington to his victory at Waterloo: and the effect of that victory on his life.

George Hooper was a Victorian writer whose books focused on topics of historical significance. In addition to Wellington, he authored several works focusing on Napoleon Bonaparte, Waterloo, and the campaign of Sedan.

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