Home Book Review The New Zealand Wars 1820–72 Men at Arms 487 from Osprey Publications

The New Zealand Wars 1820–72 Men at Arms 487 from Osprey Publications

The New Zealand Wars 1820–72


Men-at-Arms 487

Author: Ian Knight

Illustrator: Raffaele Ruggeri

This 48 page paperback book is number 487 in the Men-at-Arms series of books published by Osprey Publishing.

Between 1845 and 1872, various groups of Maori were involved in a series of wars of resistance against British settlers. The Maori had a fierce and long-established warrior tradition and subduing them took a lengthy British Army commitment, only surpassed in the Victorian period by that on the North-West Frontier of India. Warfare had been endemic in pre-colonial New Zealand and Maori groups maintained fortified villages or pas. The small early British coastal settlements were tolerated, and in the 1820s a chief named Hongi Hika travelled to Britain with a missionary and returned laden with gifts. He promptly exchanged these for muskets, and began an aggressive 15-year expansion. By the 1860s many Maori had acquired firearms and had perfected their bush-warfare tactics. In the last phase of the wars a religious movement, Pai Maarire (‘Hau Hau’), inspired remarkable guerrilla leaders such as Te Kooti Arikirangi to renewed resistance. This final phase saw a reduction in British Army forces. European victory was not total, but led to a negotiated peace that preserved some of the Maori people’s territories and freedoms.

The contents of this book are;


  • Pre-colonial Maori Society
  • The Musket Wars 1820–43
  • The Flagstaff War, 1843-47
  • Wars for Land, 1850’s-70’s
  • The Maori Warrior
  • British Troops
  • Colonial New Zealand Troops
  • Further Reading
  • Plate Commentaries
  • Index

The book contains highly detailed art work, maps, line drawings and a number of very interesting period photographs. Wargamers and modelers alike will enjoy this book with all of its information that is presented.

This book is available from Osprey Publications


MSRP UK £9.99/ US $17.95/ CAN $18.95

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