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Useful books on combat, sailing and naval history in the age of sail


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Here's a list of historical books found on Google Books or the Gutenberg project. As the their copyright is expired, they can be download free of charge in various file formats.   1. Naval history,

A treatise on naval gunnery by Sir Howard Douglas, first edition 1829   5th edition - [link]     The science of gunnery by Willian Greener, 1846   edition of 1858 - [link]     BRIT

I feel that that the very best book for players of this game is   Fighting at Sea in the Eighteenth Century: The Art of Sailing Warfare  by Sam Willis  http://amzn.com/1843833670   This covers wha

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I feel that that the very best book for players of this game is

 

Fighting at Sea in the Eighteenth Century: The Art of Sailing Warfare 
by Sam Willis 
http://amzn.com/1843833670
 
This covers what captains were actually thinking, the factors that affected decisions whether to engage, tactics, strategy, etc.     It's the most realistic account of the roles we take on in NA I've come across.
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An Essay on Naval TacticsSystematical and Historical, with Explanatory Plates, in Four Parts, John Clerk, 1824

 

Part 1 was published in 1790, but was privately distributed in small numbers starting in 1782.

 

Parts 2-4 were published in 1797.

 

This version, published in 1824, has footnotes added by the author, editor, a Royal Navy admiral, and an Officer.

 

Lots of detail on tactics, and great outlining of what when wrong in some engagements. Some insight into fleet compositions, level of ship upkeep, and ship characteristics. It gives a good account of how it took fleets multiple hours to form a line, hours and hours to close on an enemy fleet, and days spent just maneuvering without actual fighting. 

 

It's primary concern was getting rid of the ineffective tactics used during the 18th century. Nelson put this style of engagement to use at Trafalgar.

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WP_20160411_15_32_28_Pro.jpg

 

The Sea Warriors is about the men, the morale, the fighting, the officers, the discipline. It is very well composed with enticing writing but using all appropriate naval terms which can be dauting when trying to visualize the action and the positions.

Truly a great read for any Naval Action player.

 

The second is for the aficionado of the classes. With a lot of references, notes and covering a lot of history behind the "little ones". Focuses mostly on french, british and american.

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I am looking for a book to take on holiday.

 

Any recommendations? I would be most interested in Dutch sailing history but it would have to be available in English.

 

Thanks in advance.

I can recommend the following book: The Four Days' Battle 'The greatest sea fight of the age of sail' by Frank l. Fox.

Its a great read, loads of data and good background, which is mostly focused on the English side.

 

But, as the title suggests, it mainly about the four days battle, and to some extend the 2nd anglo-dutch war, but mostly focused on the battle.

The book is in English

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You have convinved me, Steel. Have just ordered.

 

Btw, how about this one? Same author, slightly different title. I guess largerly same material, but published under different publisher.

 

http://veiling.catawiki.nl/kavels/2292665-zeeslagen-frank-l-fox-a-distant-battle-the-four-days-battle-of-1666-1996

Note that the following i cant state with certainty:

 

I think it is the exact same book. Have a look at the ledger. Picture of the Ledger of: The Four Days' Battle 'The greatest sea fight of the age of sail' by Frank l. Fox.

rBRIT7L.jpg

 

and picture of zeeslagen ; Frank l. Fox - A distant battle: The Four Days' Battle of 1666-1996:

 

hKzatAy.jpg

 

This makes me very hesitant to buy the latter, since im certain it contains 99% the same information.

With the new publisher they changed the name and lay-out of the book.

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I have some more books to add:

 

Brian Lavery: The Ship of the Line, 2 Volumes.

 

Brian Lavery: Building the Wooden Walls

 

the Chatham Pictorial Histories series by Richard woodman and Robert Gardiner (ed.):

1) Fleet, Battle and Blockade 1793-1797

2) Nelson against Napoleon 1798-1801

3) The Campaign of Trafalgar 1803-1805

4) The Victory of Sea Power 1806-1814

5) The Naval War of 1812

 

Frank Howard: Sailing Warships 1400-1860

 

Peter Padfield: Nelson's War

 

Jonathan Dull: The Age of the Ship of the Line

 

John Harland: Seamanship in the Age of Sail

 

Brian Lavery: Nelson's Navy

 

Blake & Lawrence: Nelson's Navy

 

Nicholas Tracy: Nelson's Battles

 

Jean Boudriot: The Seventy-four Gun Ship, 4 Volumes

 

Jean Boudriot: Les Vaisseux de 120 à 74 Canons

 

Jean Boudriot: Les Vaisseaux de 64 à 50 Canons

 

Jean Boudriot: La Frégate de la Marine française

 

Jean Boudriot: L'Artillerie de Mer

 

Rif Winfield: The 50-Gun Ship

 

Dudley Pope: England Expects...

 

Robert Gardiner: The first Frigates

 

Robert Gardiner: The heavy Frigates

 

Robert Gardiner:  The Frigates of the Napoleonic Wars

 

Robert Gardiner & Brian Lavery: The Line of Battle

 

Those are the books that came to my mind.

Unfortunately, a lot of these books are out of print, but a good library should have them.

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9 minutes ago, Roche Brasiliano said:

Take a look at "The Sea Rover's Practice: pirates tactics and techniques (Bennerson Little)....great book too. You can find it for kindle at amazon.

It is one of the mandatory readings. After that read all the buccaneer memoires again and suddenly they gain a whole new life.

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Камрады! Моя первая вышла  книга «Английское и французское военно-противостояние морское на озере Онтарио (осада Освего 1756 г.)». Идея книги родилась давно, но была реализована лишь сейчас. СОЗДАНИЯ процесса В книги использовались все имеющийся на ДАННОМ исторические документы, касающийся описываемый период, а так же ряд ранее неопубликованные документы и карты .       

Благодарит британский иллюстратор Ральф Митчард (Ральф Мичард) за любезно предоставленные им рисунки, ставший блистательное наполнение для моей книги. В своей книге я постарался максимально возможно погрузить читателя в описываемую мною эпоху и надеюсь, что при помощи красочных рисунков Ральфа Митчарда мне это удалось.

В блоге я выложил первые 70 страниц книги, дабы читатель мог оценить стиль и подход к изложению материала автором. Помимо чёрно-белых рисунков в книге присутствует 20 цветных картинок. Общее число страниц книги 500.

http://alexstepkin.blogspot.ru/2017/04/1756_79.html

К сотрудничеству приглашает все заинтересованное и издательства ЛИЦ  в РЕАЛИЗАЦИИ и продвижение данной книга.

Цена за одну книгу - 650 рублей.

Цена за 10 книг - 500 рублей

Цена за 100 книг - 400 рублей

В блоге я выложил первые 70 страниц книги, дабы читатель мог оценить стиль и подход к изложению материала автором . Помимо чёрно-белых рисунков в книге присутствует 20 цветных картинок. Общее число страниц книги 500 http://alexstepkin.blogspot.ru/2017/04/1756_79.html

Edited by Алексей Степкин
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There is a book referenced on a few websites that I haven't come close to finding. I've seen it called a few things. I can't find a title that I can reliably search for.

Fujian sheng yuchuan tuji (Collection of Fishing Boat Drawings from Fujian Province) 1962, Fuzhou (Fujian Peoples Publishing House)

Atlas of Offshore Fishing Vessels published by the provincial authorities of Fujian.

Amoy%20Fisher%201.png

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On 9/16/2017 at 7:50 PM, Rekov said:

There is a book referenced on a few websites that I haven't come close to finding. I've seen it called a few things. I can't find a title that I can reliably search for.

Can you get the ISBN or the author?

It's probably an exclusively Chinese publication, local at that, which is why there are various titles in english.

If you could share the links you have i can try to dig more, so far i have no luck neither.

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In case this book has not already been included:

The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship, David Steel, 1794

http://www.hnsa.org/resources/manuals-documents/age-of-sail/the-elements-and-practice-of-rigging-and-seamanship/

Right in our period, it includes a dictionary of naval terms  as well as a documentation of fleet movement.

sea03.jpg

Edited by Jean de la Rochelle
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17 minutes ago, Haratik said:

Any of our naval historians come across this book before?  The Ottomans are near impossible to find anything about, so to find this book, even if some of it is out of period, makes me curious if it's worth having:

Ottoman Sailing Ships: Galleys to Galleons

No , but

https://www.amazon.com/Guleryuz-Ottoman-Sailing-Galleys-Galleons/dp/B00RWU30EE

5 pages show what is inside. Seems like it might have a bunch of publicly available blueprints stuffed inside and searchable info of that era. Would not pay $150 for it for sure. That 1st rate BP shown \/ can be found online. 

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Found on pinterest...

ed178b88482551c1ba89c937937e02d5--ottoma

Edited by Seraphic Radiance
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