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The Sydney Wars

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  21 ratings  ·  7 reviews
The Sydney Wars tells the history of military engagements between Europeans and Aboriginal Australians – described as ‘this constant sort of war’ by one early colonist – around the greater Sydney region.

Telling the story of the first years of colonial Sydney in a new and original way, this provocative book is the first detailed account of the warfare that occurred across
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Paperback, 319 pages
Published May 2018 by New South
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Tim O'Neill
May 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history
This is a remarkable and painstakingly detailed military history of the conflict between Aboriginal Australians and Europeans in the Sydney basin between the first settlement in 1788 until 1817, when the conflict moved beyond the Blue Mountains. The methodical way Stephen Gapps works his way through the mass of evidence to create not just a narrative of the various clashes, murders, battles and massacres, but one that illuminates the patterns and changes in this evolving guerilla war is ...more
Michael
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In my mind this book seemed to be a very well researched book about the early days of settlement in the Sydney basin. Mr Gapps argues that from the beginning, the local Aboriginal peoples were making it clear that the English settlers were not welcome. While English histories mostly refer to this period as having harassment, theft and murder from the local Aboriginal people, Mr Gapp argues that in actuality it was a guerrilla campaign of war that last 30 years, with a slight lull when small pox ...more
Michael Lever
Sep 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Certainly well researched from a documentary perspective, this book makes the case that colonial attitudes to warfare precluded attribution of this status to Aboriginal resistance to White invasion. And, that the nature of Aboriginal resistance was such that certainly warrants depiction as organised warfare. The problem with this argument however, is in its very strength. Gapps is totally reliant on white, written sources. He is adept at reading meaning into often dry governmental dispatches. ...more
Sally O'wheel
Feb 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book meticulously details the war between the British and the Australians in the years between Phillip and Macquarie. This book makes it clear that there was continuous war, both sides fairly evenly matched. Many died on both sides. The Aborigines fought ferociously for their land and used a variety of tactics. In some ways it made me more sympathetic to my ancestors. Once they had made the decision to invade the country, there was no other way out than war. That was the initial mistake. ...more
Jonathan Moore
Mar 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Awesome- answers a lot of questions about early settlement and impact of indigenous tribes. Quite amazing that the aboriginals managed to mount a resistance so soon after smallpox swept through their population.
Dulcie
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
From the starting point of such a fascinating subject, Gapps quickly lost me with his arrogance and oft repeated claim that everyone before him was a dill who had mis-interpreted the primary sources.
Tiresome.
Matthew Hickey
May 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
An impressively researched and readable history of conflict in early colonial times in and around Sydney.
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