Geoffrey Evans. Tannenberg 1410/1914. London:Hamish Hamilton. 1970. Pp. 182.
Can two events that took place over five hundred years apart from each other have a connection? Geoffrey Evans, a former Lieutenant General in the British Army, says that they can. In Tannenberg 1410/1914 Evans attempts to link the Tannenberg battle of 1410 between the Knights of the Teutonic Order and the combined Slavic forces of Poland and Lithuania and the Tannenberg battle of 1914 between Germany and Russia.
Though the two battles differ greatly Evans loosely links them to the ancestry of the Prussian commander of the German Eighth Army, Marshal von Hindenburg, and his suggestion of naming the 1914 battle after that of the 1410 battle. That, however, is where the similarities end. Although Evans analyzes these two connections in the opening pages of the book he does not try to give any more solid links between the battles and instead uses the rest of the book discuss in detail the actual confrontations themselves.
In thefirst quarter of the book Evans explicitly describes the events leading up to the battle of 1410 and the actual battle itself. In these chapters Evans smoothly integrates an amalgamation of research done by mostly Polish historians to creatively describe the tense situation between the Teutons and the Slavs in 1410. Evans goes into great detail to describe how the crusading Teutons threats to Polish and Lithuanian sovereignty led to the battle.
Evans describes the Knights of the Teutonic Order under the command of the Grand Master, Ulrich von Jungingen, as hypocritical, ?§war-hungry? crusaders of the Holy Catholic Church. The citizens of Poland and Lithuania are portrayed as kind and peaceful people who were pushed to the brink and chose war under the leadership of King Jagiello of Poland instead of domination. The Tannenberg battle of 1410 that developed from the threats of the Teutons is described by Evans as ?&sec…


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