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McKay illuminates a sometimes overshadowed figure

Prince Eugene of Savoy - Derek McKay

John Churchill, the Duke of Marlborough ranks among the great commanders of history. Innumerable biographies of him have been written (most notably by his no less illustrious descendant, Winston) extolling his life and battlefield successes. Often overshadowed in the process is his ally Prince Eugene of Savoy, Austria's leading general. Though the subject of several excellent German-language studies, biographies of him in English are scarce. Derek McKay's account of Eugene's life and times is by far the best available, one that stands out as well on it's merits. In it McKay provides a comprehensive and insightful account of the many facets of Eugene's career, encompassing not just his many military achievements, but his subsequent role as a statesman and his legacy as a collector and patron of the arts as well. While English-language readers would still benefit from a more detailed study of the prince, McKay's biography is unlikely to be bettered as an introduction to the achievements of this sometimes underappreciated figure.