Seminar paper from the year 2007 in the subject English Language
and Literature Studies - Culture and Applied Geography, grade: 1,0,
University of Heidelberg (Anglistisches Seminar), course: Cultural
Studies: History of British Institutions Part II, language:
English, abstract: "Take a community of Dutchmen of the type of
those who defended themselves for fifty years against all the power
of Spain at a time when Spain was the greatest power in the world.
Intermix with them a strain of those inflexible French Huguenots
who gave up home and fortune and left their country for ever at the
time of the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. The product must
obviously be one of the most rugged, virile, unconquerable races
ever seen upon earth. Take this formidable people and train them
for seven generations in constant warfare against savage men and
ferocious beasts, in circumstances under which no weakling could
survive, place them so that they acquire exceptional skill with
weapons and in horsemanship, give them a country which is eminently
suited to the tactics of the huntsman, the marksman, and the rider.
Then, finally, put a finer temper upon their military qualities by
a dour fatalistic Old Testament religion and an ardent and
consuming patriotism. Combine all these qualities and all these
impulses in one individual, and you have the modern Boer - the most
formidable antagonist who ever crossed the path of Imperial
Britain. Our military history has largely consisted in our
conflicts with France, but Napoleon and all his veterans have never
treated us so roughly as these hard-bitten farmers with their
ancient theology and their inconveniently modern rifles." 1 Sir
Arthur Conan Dolyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes detective
stories, wrote two volumes about the Boer War. He was fascinated by
the struggle of this people, called the Boers, against, what was
then, the most powerful nation in the world. And he was by no means
left all on his own with his keen interest in this
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