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British Warships in the Age of Sail 1793-1817 (Hardback)

Design, Construction, Careers and Fates

Seaforth: Wooden Walls Seaforth

By Rif Winfield
Seaforth Publishing
Pages: 432
ISBN: 9781844157174
Published: 30th September 2014

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When first published in 2005 this book was hailed as a major contribution to naval history, and its value as a reference work was reflected in the speed with which it went out of print. This revised edition incorporates some important corrections, but retains the comprehensive coverage of the first, with details of well over 2000 ships that served during the Wars of the French Revolution and Napoleonic Empire - whether purpose-built, captured, purchased or merely hired. As well as technical data on the ships, information includes commissioning dates, refit periods, changes of captain, the stations where they served (and when), as well as notes on any actions in which they took part. The book is well illustrated with contemporary prints and drawings that show the wide variety of service required of naval vessels in these wars, while specially commissioned general arrangement drawings depict the most significant classes. In all, it is a fitting tribute to a navy that at the zenith of its power in 1809 comprised one half of all the warships in the world.

A mammoth task that has resulted in a mammoth book. Rif Winfield has made a lifetime study of the sailing warship and is the ideal author to write this book. There is no need to write a long-winded review here. This is simply the definitive book on the subject. Kudos too to Seaforth for a beautifully designed and presented book.

Hellbound - Steve Earles

This volume is beautifully-produced by Seaforth Publishing to a very high quality level, and copiously illustrated – a large, most impressive volume and a mine of information. It enables anyone to follow up the most casual reference to any British warship of this period or to research in more detail a ship, a category of ships or a period; it will provide a solid core of information on which to base further study. It constitutes not only an essential work of reference for any researcher, maritime historian or serious student of the warships of the major seapower into which the Great Britain of the late 18th and early 19th Centuries had evolved, viewed at the peak if its power as a sailing navy, but is also in itself a source of great pleasure to read and handle.

Roger Marsh, Ships in Scale

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.

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