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Philip J. Haythornthwaite (born 1951) is an internationally respected and prolific author and historical consultant specializing in the military history, uniforms and equipment. Whilst his main area of research is the Napoleonic Wars, his impressive list of publications covers a much wider range of periods from the English Civil War until WWI.

Philip Haythornthwaite
Lancashire, UK
SubjectMilitary history
speciality Napoleonic Wars

Since 1973 he has had over 80 books published, plus numerous articles and papers on military history.
Much of this output through the publishers Orion Books and Osprey Publishing is directed at the popular market and Haythornthwaite’s writing has, beyond doubt, helped keep alive a general interest in history. However, his seminal works The Armies of Wellington and Redcoats, The British Soldiers of the Napoleonic Wars as well as Picton’s Division at Waterloo are serious works of research that show the author to be the equal of many professional historians.[1]
Also notable is the fact that Haythornthwaite has prepared new editions of several well-known Peninsular War memoirs : Life in Napoleon’s Army: the Memoirs of Captain Elzear Blaze In the Peninsula with a French Hussar: Memoirs of the War of the French in Spain.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and a Member of the British Commission for Military History.[2][3]
In 2015 he was awarded a Certificate in Recognition of Lifetime Achievement jointly by the BCMH and the Peninsular War 200 organisation.[4]

Haythornthwaite's other great passion is cricket.

Select bibliographyEdit

Orion Books (Blandford Press - Arms & Armour Press - Cassell & Co - Reynal) 40 titles between 1976 and 2001

  • World Uniforms + Battles 1815-50. London: Blandford Press. 1976. ISBN 0-71370-776-3.
  • British Infantry of the Napoleonic Wars. London: Arms and Armour Press. 1987. ISBN 0-85368-890-7.
  • The Armies of Wellington. London: Arms and Armour Press. 1994. ISBN 978-1-86019-849-6.
    The Armies of Wellington is the most comprehensive account ever published of the effect of this one man on the British Army during the Napoleonic era.
  • Weapons & Equipment of the Napoleonic Wars. London: Arms and Armour Press. 1996. ISBN 1-85409-495-5.
  • Napoleonic Infantry:Weapons and Warfare. London: Arms and Armour Press. 2001. ISBN 0304355097.

Osprey Publishing 35 titles between 1983 and 2016

  • MAA 141 Napoleon's Line Infantry. London: Osprey Publishing. 1983. ISBN 978 0 85045 512 0.
  • ELI 215 British Light Infantry & Rifle Tactics of the Napoleonic Wars. London: Osprey Publishing. 2016. ISBN 978 1 4728 1606 1.

Pen & Sword Books 4 titles between 2002 and 2016

  • In the Words of Napoleon. London: Pen & Sword. 2002. ISBN 978 1 85367 483 9.
  • Redcoats: The British Soldiers of the Napoleonic Wars. London: Pen & Sword. 2012. ISBN 978-1844159581.
    In this landmark book Haythornthwaite traces the career of a British soldier from enlistment, through the key stages of his path through the military system, including combat, all the way to his eventual discharge.
  • Picton’s Division at Waterloo. London: Pen & Sword. 2016. ISBN 978-1781591024.
    He concentrates on the famous Fifth Division, commanded by Sir Thomas Picton, which was a key element in Wellington's Reserve. The experiences of this division form a microcosm of those of the entire army.

Other Published Works 4 titles between 1974 and 2004

  • Uniforms of Waterloo in Color. USA: Hippocrene. 1974. ISBN 0-88254-283-4.
  • Brassey's Almanac: The Peninsular War; The Complete Companion to the Iberian Campaigns, 1807–14. London: Chrysalis Books Group. 2004. ISBN 1-85753-329-1.


With Jack Cassin-Scott and John Fabb:

  • Uniforms of the Napoleonic Wars in Colour 1796-1814. London: Blandford Press. 1973. ISBN 978-0713705720.


  1. ^ Professor Charles J. Esdaile, School of History, University of Liverpool
  2. ^ Royal Historical Society
  3. ^ British Commission for Military History
  4. ^ Peninsular War 200 was the official UK organisation for the commemoration of the Peninsular War - President : General Sir Nick Parker