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British Battleships (Hardback)

1889 - 1904

Seaforth: Iron & Steel Seaforth Naval

By Ray Burt
Seaforth Publishing
Series: British Battleships
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9781848321731
Published: 1st October 2013

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This volume brings to completion the reissue of R A Burt's magnificent bestselling three-volume history of British battleships, and it covers the pre-dreadnought era which has, in recent years, acquired a new and fervent following.

The Russian war scare of 1884 and the public's anxiety about the Royal Navy's ability to fight a modern war at sea resulted in the Naval Defence Act of 1889 and a vast programme of warship construction. Over the next twenty years a fleet of 52 battleships was built, construction finally interrupted by the revolutionary Dreadnought design. In this new volume, the author presents full details of design and construction, armament, protection, machinery and performance, all backed up with accurate data tables listing design figures, trials results, and full particulars at different stages in the ships' careers. The history of each battleship is chronicled and the reader is reminded of their major contribution in the First World War. They bore the brunt of the action at the Dardenelles, bombarded the Belgium coast, patrolled the North Sea and the Channel, reinforced the Italian Fleet, and served in East Africa, the East Indies and the White Sea. Most were extensively modified during the War and this variety has made them of special interest to the historian, enthusiast and ship modeller.

With the addition of many new photographs from the author's massive collection, this new edition is simply a 'must-have' addition to every naval library.

An impressive work with Brutal documentation. Very interesting for those lovers of naval history of all time and who like stories based on real events.

Essential for Naval Modelling and Historians.

Read the full review here.

José Manuél Rico Cortés (Mister JM) - Miniaturas JM

The text is supported by a very impressive collection of photographs and plans. The plans are particularly useful, showing the internal arrangement of the ships and the often complex deck and armament layouts. ... This is a splendid reference work, providing a impressively researched in-depth study of these important warships.

History of War

Arguably the best reference book available with regard to the pre-dreadnought era.

Bob Dean, Ton Class Association

A masterpiece of research and the comprehensive text is accompanied by tabular detail and a fine collection of photographs and line drawings. For this new edition, the author has added 75 new photographs, many of which have never appeared in print before and the book has been redesigned to show the superb photos to their best.

Ships Monthly

A comprehensive and handsomely illustrated treatment of the subject, which is highly recommended.

Warship World

Pen and Sword /Maritime Press are now offering a new edition of R A Burt’s classic work first published in 1988. I say ‘edition’ rather than ‘reprint’ as there is additional material (and particularly additional photographs) compared to the original, which was itself a master work.


The overall production standards of the book are exemplary, not least for the lavish illustration, including many beautiful double-page photographs, and exquisite line drawings (by Burt himself).
I commend this work to every serious student of the Victorian and Edwardian Royal Navy.

Rum Ration – The Navy Network

This is a magnificent book well up to Seaforth's very high standard with a wealth of detail and a mass of excellent illustrations and photographs. Most strongly recommended to all interested in the Royal Navy.

Scuttlebutt - Friends of the RN Museum

Burt who is an expert naval historian has studied the design, construction and service histories of all the Battleships. During his years of research he has managed to gather one of the best collections of naval pictures of these historical ships.

As you would expect from Burt this is a beautiful book that is well written well illustrated with the designs and the corresponding service history of each ship. This is a wonderful and large book just looking through its pages is a privilege which is very easy on the eye. It is a great book to dip in and out of as well as take time to go through and read.
 
This wonderful book would make an ideal present for those who love naval history and this would be a fantastic addition to someone’s collection. This is a revised addition to Burt’s original edition it now contains more pictures and additional information. The original has been out of print for a very long time so this is welcome as it is affordable and beautiful at the same time.

Paul Diggett

Burt’s works bring together a powerful combination of extensive photography, detailed large scale drawings, diagrams illustrating differences within classes, changes over time, and camouflage schemes, and lucid text describing development, realization, modifications and upgrades, service history, and analysis of the successes and failings of the various classes technologically, operationally, and in comparison with their foreign contemporaries. The overall high quality of the volumes’ presentation, especially of the lavish imagery, adds to the sense of their completeness.
The most remarkable accomplishment of Burt’s volumes is their success in bringing together policy, technology, evolution to face new challenges, physical changes, and operational history, accompanied by extraordinary and extensive imagery. They simultaneously meet many of the needs of historians of technology, researchers in naval history, and model makers without compromising the quality of the work. The publishers are to be congratulated on bringing these important work back into print – they fill a major need.

Nautical Research Journal

About Ray Burt

RAY BURT has researched the design, construction and service histories of British battleships for many years, and has also assembled one of the most outstanding collections that exists of photographs of the ships. He is also an accomplished draughtsman and illustrator, and many of his superb drawings appear in this book.

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