The Secret Expedition

The Anglo-Russian Invasion of Holland 1799

Geert van Uythoven

A complete and thoroughly researched book about ‘The Secret Expedition'; the Anglo-Russian invasion of Holland 1799 and the Franco-Batavian defence. Including numerous first-hand accounts.
Publication date:
August 2018
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Series :
From Reason to Revolution
Illustration :
23 b/w photos, 22 b/w ills. 15 b/w maps
Format Available     Quantity Price
ISBN : 9781912390205

Dimensions : 245 X 170 mm
This book is temporarily out of stock.

Regular Price: £29.95

Special price £22.00


• Thoroughly researched and unbiased
• A complete book of the campaign
• Provides new insights, refuting historical claims

In 1799, as part of the Second Coalition against France, an Anglo-Russian army landed in Holland to overthrow the Batavian Republic and to reinstate the Stadtholder William V of Orange. Initially called ‘The Secret Expedition', although not really a secret for both sides, the description of the invasion reads like a novel. Five major battles were fought between armies of four different nations, with unexpected deeds of heroism and unexpected defeats. There were secret negotiations and rumours of bribery. More than enough ingredients for biased opinions, historical errors, and incorrect information copied from historians up to this day.

The aim of this book is to give a balanced, detailed, and complete account of the events taking place during the invasion: the preparations on both sides, detailed descriptions of the battles as well as the events taking place at sea and in the eastern provinces of the Batavian Republic. Also giving new opinions on questions like: What were the causes of ‘The Secret Expedition'? Did Brune indeed delay reinforcing the Batavians? What caused the frequent panics in the participating armies? Were the French veteran troops and the Batavians soldiers unreliable? How was the treaty closed?

The book is based on source material from all participating countries, including numerous firsthand accounts of eye-witnesses and contemporaries, providing the reader with a mirror to the past.


All in all, this is another quality production from Helion.
Miniature Wargames - Chris Jarvis

The book is lavishly illustrated and also has some excellent maps. It is well worth a read - especially if the Revolutionary Wars are your thing, but even in general it is still a very good and interesting read - especially when you read about the outcomes (and fallout) for the armies that fought there… Highly recommended
Wargames, Soldiers, and Strategy

This very good synthesis can be used to reconstruct the battles of this campaign.