British Infantryman vs Mahdist Warrior
Sudan 1884–98

Osprey Combat 58 British Infantryman vs Mahdist Warrior



Ian Knight

Illustrated by

Raffaele Ruggeri


This 80-page Paperback book is the 58th book in the Combat Series of books that are available from Osprey Publications.

Combat 58-1
British Infantrymen of the 1st Grenadier Guards

In the early 1880s, Britain intervened in independent Egypt and seized control of the Suez Canal. British forces were soon deployed to Egypt’s southern colony, the Sudan, where they confronted a determined and capable foe amid some of the world’s most inhospitable terrain. In 1881 an Islamic fundamentalist revolt had broken out in the Sudan, led by a religious teacher named Muhammad Ahmad bin Abd Allah, who proclaimed himself al-Mahdi, ‘The Guided One’. In 1884, Mahdist forces besieged the Sudanese capital of Khartoum; Colonel Charles Gordon was sent to the city with orders to evacuate British personnel but refused to leave. Although the British despatched a relief column to rescue Gordon, the Mahdists stormed Khartoum in January 1885 and he was killed. British troops abandoned much of the Sudan, but renewed their efforts to reconquer it in the late 1890s, in a bloody campaign that would decide the region’s fate for generations. Written by leading expert Ian Knight, this fully illustrated study examines the evolving forces, weapons and tactics employed by both sides in the Sudan, notably at the battles of Abu Klea (16-18 January 1885), Tofrek (22 March 1885) and Atbara (8 April 1898).

Combat-2 Battle Of Abu Klea’
Battle Of Abu Klea’


The contents of this book are:

  • Introduction
  • The Opposing Sides
    • Origins and Recruitment
    • Organization and Force Structure
    • Motivation and Identity
    • Logistics
    • Command and Control
    • Weapons, Training and Tactics
  • Abu Klea, 17 January 1885
  • Tofrek, 22 March 1885
  • Atbara, 8 April 1898
  • Analysis
  • Aftermath
  • Orders of Battle
  • Bibliography
  • Index

Combat 58-3 Charge Of 21st Lancers At Battle Of Omdurman
Charge Of 21st Lancers At Battle Of Omdurman


British Infantryman versus Mahdist Warrior, Sudan 1884 – 1898 is another excellent book covering a topic not often studied. The pictures illustrate the heavy fighting and the brutality of the battles that took place. Figure painters and modelers will gain all types of inspiration to create vignettes or dioramas from the battles of this time period. The color plates and drawings of uniforms and weapons provide the figure painter with an excellent resource. Overall, Combat 58 will make an excellent addition to the modeler, figure painter, or historians personal library.

This 80-page paperback book, Sudan 1884 to 1898 British Infantryman versus Mahdist Warrior is the 58th book in the Combat Series of books that are available from Osprey Publishing.




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(The photographs used in this review are copied with the permission of Osprey Publications.)