Naval Artists of the 18th Century – Part 5, Nicholas Pocock Nicholas Pocock In earlier articles in this occasional series of blogs (click here for bloglist) we have met artists – such as Thomas Luny and Richard Paton – who had experience of life at sea before (or sometimes during) their careers [...]
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The Crimean War’s White Sea Theatre, 1854 This article tells about British naval operations in the White Sea in 1854. The Crimean War (1854 – 56) is most remembered for images of the charge of Britain’s Light Brigade at Balaclava, the privations suffered by the ill-equipped besiegers of Sevastopol through a deadly winter and the [...]
HMS Redwing – odds of one to seven, 1808 Sir Thomas Ussher Sir Thomas Ussher (1779–1848) was one of the younger generation of Royal Navy officers who served in the Napoleonic wars and who, though they advanced in many cases to coveted Post-Captain rank were denied the opportunity of greater commands and responsibilities [...]
Crimean War: Britain's Danube Mouth Raid of 1854 The war fought by Britain, France, Turkey and Piedmont in 1854-56 is normally referred to as the “Crimean War” since it was in the Crimea, on the northern shores of the Black Sea, where most of the combat took place. The Allied forces concentrated on besieging the [...]
The Arrival of the Imperial German Navy on the World’s Oceans Today, November 30th 2018, sees the publication of my latest novel, Britannia’s Mission. Like all books in the Dawlish Chronicles series, the plot and action are linked to real events, persons and political developments. Set in 1883, one of the major themes is the arrival of [...]
Hazards of suppressing the Slave Trade, 1847 Britain’s legal abolition of her slave trade in 1807 is one of the most admirable actions in her history, making it illegal for British subjects to deal in slaves or to carry them in British ships. The penalty for so doing was initially only a fine but as [...]
Mrs. Reston, the Heroine of Matagorda, 1810 In historical fiction (including my own) women tend to turn up in the most extraordinary situations and bear heavy responsibilities, to an extent which may seem fanciful to many today, given the idea many have of women’s role being so subservient during much of the past. One example is [...]
Naval Artists of the 18th Century – Part 4 Richard Paton (1717 – 1791) In the previous parts of this occasional series I commented on the fact that so many of the artists of the Age of Fighting Sail who left us the paintings that have formed our mental images of warfare in that era, [...]
Sailing Craft versus U-Boats in World War 1 Though the “Age of Fighting Sail” ended around 1840 as regards major warships, small sailing craft were to play a very important role in World War 1 in Britain’s battle against Germany’s U-Boats. One such heroine craft was the Lowestoft fishing smack Telesia, which was conscripted into naval [...]
HMS Britannia and HMS Ascot The Royal Navy’s last losses of WW1 In two day’s time, on November 11th 2018, the armistice that ended the westerns Allies’ war with Germany will be remembered. Negotiation of the terms had been underway since November 8th and though the terms were argued over there was no doubt that [...]