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The War of Jenkins' Ear
The War of Jenkins' Ear
by Decision Games (I) (2017)
Player Count
1 to 2
  • Nautical
  • Wargame
  • Age of Reason
  • Designers
  • Eric R. Harvey
  • Mechanisms
  • Hex-and-Counter
  • Artists
  • Trevor Holman
  • Family
  • Magazine: Strategy & Tactics
  • Region: Caribbean
  • History: War of Austrian Succession
  • Rating: 7.72/10 from 22 users


    The War of Jenkins’ Ear simulates the last major conflict in the Caribbean between England and Spain from about 1739 to 1748 (though it was largely eclipsed in Europe by the War of Austrian Succession at the time.) The actual underlying cause of the war was trading rights in the lucrative West Indies. After centuries of intermittent and reoccurring war between the English and Spanish, these two maritime powers had managed to work out a trade agreement that ended their conflicts but not their longstanding enmity. In April 1731, the captain of the Spanish caravel La Isabela intercepted and boarded an English brigantine (the Rebecca) near Jamaica that he suspected of being a smuggler. The brig’s goods were looted and the English captain (Robert Jenkins) was consequently tortured throughout that day. When the Spanish captain (Juan Leòn Fandiño) hacked off Jenkins’ ear with a cutlass, he bridled, “Go tell your king that the same will happen to him if he is caught doing the same.” Beyond the bravado or even hubris that convoked such an utterance from el capitán, it would reaffirm the old proverb, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue” because this flippant threat would indeed eventually reach the truculent King George II.

    Components: One 22" x 34" map & 228 counters

    S&T #308, Nov-Dec 2017

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