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British Warships in the Age of Sail 1603-1714 (Hardback)

Design Construction, Careers and Fates

Seaforth: Wooden Walls Seaforth

By Rif Winfield
Seaforth Publishing
Pages: 384
ISBN: 9781848320406
Published: 30th November 2009
Last Released: 2nd November 2009



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The seventeenth century saw the transformation of Britain from a minor state on the fringes of Europe into a global economic power, whose interests were protected and promoted by the largest navy in the world. The character of this navy was forged by a bloody civil war, three fiercely disputed conflicts with the Dutch, and the first of many wars with the French. In the process the ships themselves were transformed from the surviving galleons that had defeated the Spanish Armada, through huge prestige vessels like Prince Royal and Sovereign of the Seas and the lightly built frigates of the Commonwealth era into warships that were recognisably ships of the line.

These radical developments in the design and employment of warships can be followed in detail for the first time in this comprehensive new reference book, which outlines the history of every ship built, purchased or captured that saw naval service during this era. Like its companion volumes on the 1714-1792 and 1793-1817 periods, the book is organised by Rate, classification and class, with outline technical and building data, but followed by a concise summary of the careers of each ship in every class.

With its unique depth of information, this is a work of the utmost importance to every naval historian and general reader interested in the navy of the sailing era.

This book has a steep price but is cheap in comparison to what it contains and what it too to research. In mere physical terms, this is a beautifully made book, properly bound, good paper, and the kind of intelligent typesetting that helps the reader, to put it crudely, quickly distinguished what goes with what.

714 - Speedreaders.info - Oct 2011

Beautifully-produced, to a very high quality level, this is an indispensable volume for any researcher, maritime historian or serious student of the naval ships of the emerging major seapower which was the Britain of the 17th Century.

Ships in Scale, May/June 2010

This book is frankly quite superb and deserves to be included in the library of anyone interested in this period of maritime history.

David Clement- South West Maritime History Society

About Rif Winfield

Rif Winfield has worked in the shipping and computer industries, has been for many years a charity director, has operated his own retail businesses (with his wife Ann), and has been a candidate for elections to Parliament and other levels of government, including serving as an elected Councillor and being appointed to government posts in health and in local government. A life-long researcher into naval history, he lives in Mid Wales and is the author of a number of standard works on the ships of the British Navy.

Perfect Partner

British Warships in the Age of Sail 1714-1792 Design, Construction, Careers and Fates (Hardback)

The new Hanoverian dynasty that came to power with the accession of George I in 1714 inherited the largest navy in the world. In the course of the century, this force would see a vast amount of action against nearly every major navy, reaching a pinnacle of success in the Seven Years War only to taste defeat in the American Revolutionary struggle, when it faced the combined navies of France, Spain, the Netherlands, and the rebellious colonies themselves. Considering the contribution to history of these ships, there is surprisingly little readily available on their careers. Now this gap is comprehensively…

By Rif Winfield

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