Food, funds, and fortresses: Resource mobilization and positional warfare in the campaigns of Louis XIV

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

That France would remain inviolate Louis XIV encircled her with fortresses, whose bristling cannon menaced any who would approach. Contributions provided a manner to raise money as well as fodder and food across the French frontier. After 1659 French contributions became an integral part of the state's fiscal base for war. Administered by agents of the central administration, contributions evolved into regular and rational impositions assessed on areas outside the king's domains. Contributions and other demands upon foreign lands depended on the control of territory, and fortifications held the key to this control. During the War of the Spanish Succession, Louis regarded Landau as so essential to controlling Lower Alsace for contributions that his armies battled over its possession through several sieges. Smaller posts, often fortified, were also chosen for their use in launching contribution raids. Strings of redoubts and entrenched lines provided even better protection from raiders than did great permanent fortifications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationFeeding Mars
Subtitle of host publicationLogistics in Western Warfare from the Middle Ages to the Present
EditorsJohn A Lynn
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages150-172
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9780429699900
ISBN (Print)081331716, 9780367007621
DOIs
StatePublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)

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