The Wooden Fighting Ship in the Royal Navy AD 897-1860 by E. H. H. Edward Hunter Holmes Archibald

The Wooden Fighting Ship in the Royal Navy AD 897-1860 by E. H. H. [Edward Hunter Holmes] Archibald lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: Blandford Press, 1968, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Drawings; Colour Drawings; Tables; Illustrated endpapers and blanks;

From the cover: This splendidly illustrated book presents the history of the development of the wooden fighting ship from the time of King Alfred until the third quarter of the nineteenth century, which saw the end of traditional wooden ship-building for the Royal Navy.

The author is the curator of oil paintings at the National Maritime Museum, and so is well placed to use its unique records and collections. He has worked in close collaboration with the artist, Ray Woodward, who has produced meticulous drawings, working from Admiralty builders draughts and from models and pictures.

Besides the general text, the book contains copious lists of establishments of ships and guns, a summary of British naval events to 1860, appendices on flags and types of shot, and a glossary of naval terms.

A companion volume will deal with the development of iron and steel-hulled warships from their first appearance in the middle of the last century until the present time.

Very Good in Good Dust Wrapper. Dust wrapper is a little age-tanned with the laminate rippling at the margin of the upper panel. Text complete, clean and tight.

Blind-stamped Blue boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. 174 pages. Index. Bibliography. 12¼” x 9″.

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Mediterranean Maelstrom: H. M. S. Jervis and the 14th Flotilla by G. G. Connell

Mediterranean Maelstrom: H. M. S. Jervis and the 14th Flotilla by G. G. Connell lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: William Kimber & Co., Ltd, 1987, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Maps; Tables;

From the cover: From the outbreak of World War II until the conclusion of conflict in Europe HMS Jervis was involved in almost continuous action, first in home waters and then for three years in the Mediterranean. She returned to the United Kingdom for the Normandy landings before returning to the Mediterranean to continue her active career.

The destroyer flotilla leader, commanded by a succession of outstanding Captain Ds, led the 14th Flotilla on numerous day and night actions classic gun and torpedo attacks on the Italian battle fleet, ship to shore bombardments, submarine hunts, and as escorts of siege supply and invasion convoys. In spite of inadequate and rudimentary anti-aircraft armament, she defended both herself and units under her protection from very many air assaults.

HMS Jervis was awarded thirteen battle honours, a position shared by just two other ships of the fleet, the cruiser Orion and Tribal class destroyer Nubian. This is the story of the ship as leader of the 7th then the 14th Flotilla.

G. G. Connell, having interviewed many of her officers and men, records the achievements of the Jervis, where possible through first-person accounts. Her fighting career though second to none is surprisingly little known considering the fact that she delivered so many powerful blows to the Axis naval forces in the Mediterranean. This book concentrates on her years at the head of the 14th Flotilla and gives a vivid picture both of vital episodes in the war at sea and what it was like to live aboard a destroyer in wartime.

Very Good in Good Dust Wrapper. Dust wrapper sunned at the spine otherwise a very well presented copy.

Blue boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. 272 pages. Index. 9½” x 6″.

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U-boats Under the Swastika by Jak P. Mallmann Showell

U-boats Under the Swastika by Jak P. Mallmann Showell lands on the shelves of my shop.

Shepperton: Ian Allan, Ltd, 1987, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Graphs; Black & White Drawings; Maps; Tables; Plans;

From the cover: In this second edition of U-Boats under the Swastika, first published in 1973, J. P. Mallmann Showell has revised and rewritten much of the text in the light of the recently released Enigma documents which have called much of the interpretation of World War 2 into question.

Supported by a wealth of rare photographs, many previously unpublished in Britain, and a selection of line illustrations and diagrams, U-boats under the Swastika traces the history of the German U-boat arm from its prewar origins, through the heyday of the Wolf Packs and service in the far corners of the oceans, to the final death with dignity in 1945. The development of weapons, radar and new boats, amongst other subjects, are supported by comprehensive tables of data which all go to make this book a fascinating account of U-boats under the Nazi flag.

It is fitting that U-boats under the Swastika has been written by the son of a U-boat man: J. P. Mallmann Showells father, Diesel Obermaschinist Jak Mallmann, was lost at sea on his 13th operational tour with U377 in January 1944 when, ironically, his boat was sunk by a German torpedo.

Very Good in Good Dust Wrapper. Dust wrapper faded at the spine and onto the margins of the panels. Text complete, clean and tight.

Black boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. 144 pages. Bibliography. 9½” x 7″.

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Aircraft Carriers of the World, 1914 to the Present: An Illustrated Encyclopaedia by Roger Chesneau

Aircraft Carriers of the World, 1914 to the Present: An Illustrated Encyclopaedia by Roger Chesneau lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: Arms & Armour Press, 1995, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Jacket illustration: HMS Illustrious and USS Saratoga operating together in the Indian Ocean, April 1944; a painting by Geoff Hunt. Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Tables; Plans;

From the cover: Aircraft Carriers of the World is the first comprehensive reference work to detail in one volume with data, line drawings and photographs the 360-plus carriers designed or projected by the worlds navies.

Although only five (and until recently only four) nations have ever completed the building of aircraft carriers, such vessels have seen service in twelve of the worlds navies. Depending upon precisely how one defines the term aircraft carrier, some 329 ships of this type have been operated throughout the world, more than half by the US Navy; in addition, scores of carriers have been projected. All of these vessels are catalogued in Aircraft Carriers of the World, arranged chronologically according to country. Each basic design is discussed, and appearance notes and career summaries are presented for each individual carrier. In addition, each main entry is accompanied by a table giving design specifi-cations, by a pair of constant-scale general arrangement line drawings, and by a selection of photographs carefully chosen to give as far as possible a comprehensive picture of each class and the variations within it.

The catalogue section of the book is preceded by a detailed narrative tracing the origins and evolution of the aircraft carrier as a viable fighting unit, with particular emphasis on the conflicting design requirements of, on the one hand, the ship, and, on the other, her aircraft a problem that has proved to be one of the most taxing ever to face naval constructors. Flight deck operations and carrier tactics are also discussed, and an insight into the political argument that has continually accompanied carrier development is offered.

Containing over 400 photographs and line drawings, Aircraft Carriers of the World provides the reader with all the essential information he may wish to seek concerning what has become the largest and most complex fighting machine devised by man.

Very Good in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Gently faded at the spine of the dust wrapper otherwise a very well presented copy.

Blue boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. 288 pages. Index. Bibliography. 10″ x 10″.

Of course, if you don’t like this one there are plenty more available here!

Fighters of the Luftwaffe by Joachim Dressel & Manfred Greihl

Fighters of the Luftwaffe by Joachim Dressel & Manfred Greihl lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: Arms & Armour Press, 1993, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Tables;

From the cover: In this encyclopedic new work, the combined talents of two leading German aviation historians have produced possibly the ultimate illustrated reference to all German fighter aircraft. Most of the 300-plus original photographs have never been published before and they superbly illustrate all sub-types and development models of more than 30 aircraft.

All types are included: the advanced designs in the rearmament of the 1930s, such as the Heinkel 112, Henschel 121 and Messerschmitt 109, through every wartime fighter, including the FW 190A-D models, Bf 210 and Me 410, Ta 152, He 219 and Do 335, and full coverage of the development of the revolutionary jet and rocket aircraft in which Germany was far in advance of the Allies.

The appeal of this book is also in the range of aircraft photographs, which show special power-plant, radar and weapons developments as well as unusual unit markings, photos of types in manufacture and operational conversions in the field all rarely seen. The accompanying text emphasises the development of the Luftwaffe fighters, with facts and figures on the huge range of variants and sub-types under testing and of which little is known for example, the evolution of the standard Bf 109 into the P 1091 Extreme High Altitude Fighter of almost 60,000-feet operational ceiling.

There are numerous books on this subject, but few can boast the number and diversity of new illustrations and the comprehensive nature of the technical data in this superb new study. Restorers, collectors, historians and modellers will relish the wealth of fresh information offered by such a volume which sheds much new light on a subject previously considered incomplete.

Very Good+ in Very Good+ Dust Wrapper.

Green boards with Yellow titling to the Spine. 160 pages. 11″ x 8¾”.

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Lion by the Tail: The Story of the Italian-Ethiopian War by Thomas M. Coffey

Lion by the Tail: The Story of the Italian-Ethiopian War by Thomas M. Coffey lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: Hamish Hamilton, 1974, Hardback in dust wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Plates; Maps to the endpapers and blanks;

From the cover: When a company of Ethiopian soldiers clashed on December 5th, 1934, with a garrison force of Italian troops at a desert water-hole called Wal Wal, about 450 miles southeast of Addis Ababa, the incident seemed so trivial that some European and American newspapers ignored it; others gave it only two or three lines. Yet this encounter set off a chain of events which produced a hideous war between Ethiopia and Italy and made the Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia (known as the Lion of Judah) into a world-famous tragic hero. It exposed the weakness and cynicism of the European and American democracies, destroyed the League of Nations, and led directly to World War II.

Lion by the Tail is the story of Mussolinis 1935-6 invasion of Ethiopia and of the diplomatic duplicity which made it possible. The book shows that, while the Italian-Ethiopian War cannot be said to have caused World War II, it was the most important single event in bringing about that cataclysm.

The human aspects of the bloody struggle between the bare-footed Ethiopians and the mechanized, mustard-gas spraying Italians are dramatically emphasized. But Lion by the Tail also presents documentary proof that reasonable firmness by the French, British and American governments would have prevented Mussolinis vieious adventure, and would thereby have warned Hitler against adopting Mussolinis bluffing, bullying diplomatic tactics. When Sir John Simon, Sir Samuel Hoare, Stanley Baldwin, Pierre Laval and even Franklin D. Roosevelt refused to stop Mussolini, it appeared to Hitler that such men would do nothing to stop him.

In describing the tragic failure of democratic diplomacy as well as the violent battle scenes between the Italians and Ethiopians, Lion by the Tail not only brings to life the full story of that brutal war, but also contributes importantly to our understanding of the even more brutal war which began three years later.

Good+ in Very Good Dust Wrapper. A little rubbing to the edges of the dust wrapper with a light scratch across the head of the upper panel. The pages are somewhat tanned, if tight, and a little musty.

Black boards with Silver titling to the Spine. [XIII] 369 pages. Index. Bibliography. 9½” x 6¼”.

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The Last Kaiser: William the Impetuous by Giles MacDonogh

The Last Kaiser: William the Impetuous by Giles MacDonogh lands on the shelves of my shop.

London: Phoenix Press, 2001, Paperback.

First in this, paperback, edition. Illustrated by way of: Black and White Photographs;

From the cover: Prussias last King and Germanys last Kaiser was born in Potsdam in 1859, the son of Prince Frederick of Prussia and Princess Vicky, Queen Victorias eldest child.

William was born with a withered arm and suffered from cerebral palsy. Believed mad by some, eccentric by others, he possessed a ferocious temper, was rumoured to have sired numerous illegitimate children (and suspected of homosexual affairs) and yet appeared a prig. A power grabber who built a fleet targeted at Britain, he nevertheless idolised Queen Victoria who, he claimed, died in his arms.

William II was also a war monger whose sabre-rattling over Serbia brought about the First World War which cost him his own throne and his countrys defeat.

Near Fine.

[XII] 532 pages. Index. Bibliography. Trade Paperback (9¼” x 6″).

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