Seafaring, Sailors and Trade, 1450–1750: Studies in British and European Maritime and Imperial History, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Seafaring, Sailors and Trade, 1450–1750

Studies in British and European Maritime and Imperial History, 1st Edition

By G.V. Scammell


322 pages

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Hardback: 9780860788973
pub: 2003-04-11
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This second volume of articles by G.V. Scammell offers new insights into the history of British and European shipping in the centuries of Europe's penetration into the oceans of the world, from the 15th to the 18th century. It examines the building, ownership and operation of merchantmen in the context of economic and social developments of the period, combining this with the investigation of the vital, but still comparatively neglected, subjects of the lives, working conditions, beliefs, skills and behaviour of seamen. This is the basis for discussion of the means and methods by which British shipping and merchants established themselves in oceanic trades, including those of other powers, considered in relation to the growth of British maritime and commercial supremacy. The final studies then examine the causes and consequences of European and British seaborne expansion, particularly in Asia.


'This collection of essays offers both a crash course in the development of merchant shipping and its importance to the empires of European states, and also a salutary account of the dangers to life, capital and material in the exploitation of overseas markets.' The Northern Mariner 'Anyone familiar with a Variorum series knows that they are invaluable compilations of previously published articles, often spanning decades, and thereby conveying developments in a field… [Scammell] continues to chart new areas of maritime research, as well as occasionally revisiting old haunts. One is well served by using this volume as both a series of historical voyages and an ongoing apprenticeship in maritime history, all under the guidance of a capable master.' International Journal of Maritime History 'Students of naval history, the explorations, international trading, and imperialism of the early modern age will welcome the ready access to Scammell's writings that this volume provides.' Sixteenth Century Journal 'An important collection which makes a major contribution to maritime studies, and to the literature on Western expansion.' English Historical Review

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface; War at sea under the early Tudors: some Newcastle-upon-Tyne evidence (parts I & II); Shipowning in England, c.1450-1550; British merchant shipbuilding, c.1500-1750; The merchant service master in early modern England; Mutiny in British ships, c.1500-1750; 'A very profitable and advantageous trade': British smuggling in the Iberian Americas, 1500-1750; The English chartered trading companies and the sea; The great age of discovery, 1400-1650; European seafaring in Asia, c.1500-1750; England, Portugal and the Estado da Índia, c.1500-1635; Seafaring in the Estado da Índia, c.1500-1750; After Da Gama: Europe and Asia since 1498; Addenda and corrigenda; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

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 [email protected]

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General