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  • Naval Leadership and the ‘Art of War’: John Jervis and José de Mazarredo Compared (1797–9)

    Agustín Guimerá

    Chapter from the book: Guimerá A. & Harding R. 2017. Naval Leadership in the Atlantic World: The Age of Reform and Revolution, 1700–1850.


    This paper compares two naval offices Jervis and Mazerredo who confronted each other during the blockade of Cádiz. Drawing on Andrew Lambert’s reflections on the true ‘admiral’s art’ the chapter notes the record of their previous service with Jervis’s demeanour commanding and inflexible. Mazzerredo was studious and philanthropic working more with subordinates more harmoniously than Jervis, among them Antonio de Escaño, though it was the British man who proved to be shrewder with his political masters. The Anglo-Spanish War of 1796-1802 would see a contrast between the British approach of ‘destructive wars’ or absolute destruction compared to the ‘containing’ policy of the Spanish. Contrasts and some similarities are noted in the pair concerning in leadership values, attitudes towards the enemy, humanitarianism and protocol with the Britain pursuing a war of annihilation for instance during the shelling of Cádiz in 1797 as contrasted with the more traditional attritional tactics of the Spanish.

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    Guimerá, A. 2017. Naval Leadership and the ‘Art of War’: John Jervis and José de Mazarredo Compared (1797–9). In: Guimerá A. & Harding R (eds.), Naval Leadership in the Atlantic World. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book2.l

    This is an Open Access chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (unless stated otherwise), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright is retained by the author(s).

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    Published on March 30, 2017