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Actually the question was originally couched purely in terms of the qualities of Wellington; however, all observations and reading recommendations are gratefully received.

I guess I picked up on the vibe of several other posts in this thread then! 😉

Wellington was a superb tactical commander.  Mostly his tactics revolved around an initial defensive posture followed by a swift counter attack.

He was a womanizer.

He was not terribly charismatic, which may be how the program you watched came to the conclusion that he was “indifferent.”

He seemed to embrace the idea of working with anyone, even those he did not like.  Picton was a nasty individual on a personal level even by the standards of the early 1800s.  Wellington saw his talent and used his aggressive nature in battle.  Lord Uxbridge ran off with the wife of Wellington’s brother which wellington despised Uxbridge for.  never the less, Uxbridge served loyally under Wellington.

He took many personal risks in order to ensure his troops were used in a manner he would want.  He was nearly captured or killed on several occasions.  Which does bring me to a final quality that Napoleon himself sought in his generals.

Wellington was lucky.  Not, he got lucky and won all those battles.  He was lucky in the sense that good things seemed to happen for the man.



"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."

--Abraham Lincoln