Washington’s Spies

Washington’s Spies by Alexander Rose

Quote: “Winter was traditionally a quiet time for armies, summer being the accepted and most civilized season to recommence killing the enemy.” – Alexander Rose


I found it interesting that the word “civilized” was chosen to describe the season which was commonly designated to fighting. When considering the history of the war, fighting was defined by British war ethics, which rarely involved any form of guerrilla warfare. Typically, both armies would assemble into a fighting position and then take turns firing. This code for fighting was established by the British because they believed that war should still require the men to behave as gentlemen. When described in the quote, winter was when fighting was not civilized. This can be interpreted as winter having an unfair advantage over the soldiers. The soldiers were no match against the harsh conditions and many lost their lives. As a result, a mutual but unspoken agreement took place, putting a cease fire on the war until the season passed inviting the welcoming conditions of the spring and summer. This mentality and attitude of the British spoke about how they initially viewed the war. A gentleman’s game which contained no form of fear or discomfort.


Rose, A. (2006). Washington’s spies: The story of America’s first spy ring. New York: Bantam Books.

Turn Episode 109 or as I like to call it “Chaos is a Coming” -. (2014, June 1). Retrieved January 30, 2015, from http://booksandbeverages.org/2014/06/02/turn-episode-109-like-call/


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