The articles collected here (two appearing for the first time in English) cover a number of topics central to naval history and illustrate the author's contention that this is not only, or even chiefly, a distinct area of special study, but rather a central theme running through the history of England, and of the whole British Isles. Though the subjects and the styles vary a good deal, the studies are linked by a common approach and some common ideas. Hence many examine ways in which naval history has formed a key element in such subjects as intellectual, religious, administrative or medical history and explored the nature and meaning of sea power as a theme. At the same time naval history is a technical subject, which demands a willingness to understand warships - the most complex artefacts - and the structure of large and complex organisations. Detailed evidence about ships and weapons can build large conclusions, for example about late Anglo-Saxon government and military organisation, or about the nature of warfare at sea in the Renaissance era. While mostly written from the British point of view, several essays explicitly survey naval developments over a range of countries, and even the most narrowly focused are at least implicitly aware of the wider world of war at sea.
’… this collection will be of very great value to historians, and teachers…’ International Journal of Maritime History
Contents: Preface; Cnut's geld and the size of Danish ships; The naval service of the Cinque ports; The development of broadside gunnery, 1450-1650; The new Atlantic: naval warfare in the 16th century; The military revolution at sea; Queen Elizabeth and the myth of sea-power in English history; The victualling of the British Navy during the Seven Years War; Medicine, administration and society in the 18th-century Royal Navy; Mobilizing seapower in the 18th century; The naval chaplain in the 18th century; Medicine and science in the British Navy of the 18th century; Weather, geography and naval power in the age of sail; Form and function in European navies, 1660-1815; Navies and the Enlightenment; Commissioned officers' careers in the Royal Navy, 1690-1815; Mutiny or subversion? Spithead and the Nore; Training or education: a naval dilemma over three centuries; Index.
The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.
The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.
Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource.
For further information about contributing to the series please contact Michael Greenwood at Michael.Greenwood@informa.com