The 2018 edition of the annual devoted to the design, development and service history of combat ships includes two articles exploring the Battle of the River Plate and the damage suffered by the Graf Spee in the engagement. It also features an analysis of unbuilt Russian defensive ‘monitor’ ship designs of the First World War, and a review of some of the sophisticated modern vessels in service for the replenishment of ships at sea.
An Illustrated History
After briefly surveying ancient constructions such as Maiden Castle and Gwalior Fort in India, Jeremy Black goes on to present a history of fortifications based on their depiction on maps and plans. From Norman castles – Pontefract is shown in a plan from 1561 – the book shows how buildings as bases for attack or defence changed as ever more powerful armaments were developed, up to the trenches and defences such as the Maginot and Siegfried Lines in the 20th century.
Crimea from Potemkin to Putin
Since it was founded in 1783, during the reign of Catherine the Great and Potemkin, Sevastopol has survived a long history of conflict, including two major sieges: the city’s commanding strategic advantage as a naval anchorage in the Black Sea has made it a city worth fighting for. In this study, Mungo Melvin traces the story of Sevastopol and its Crimean hinterland since prehistory, illuminating the historical background to the 2014 referendum vote to return to Russia.
The Hawker Hurricane was designed and built to counteract the growing aerial power of the Axis nations in the 1930s. With its stable firing platform and robust construction, it played a vital role in the RAF’s success. This illustrated guide details the technical history and combat performance of the aircraft, which chalked up more kills than the better-known Spitfire in the battles over Britain and France.
The Shield and the Arbitration
Stanley Ireland’s critical edition of these two social comedies – The Arbitration (Epitrepontes) and The Shield (Apsis) – aims to make Menander’s sophisticated dramatic technique and use of language accessible to the modern reader. Greek text with facing English translation.
The First Battle of the Cold War
At the end of the Second World War, as Germany lay in ruins, the Western Allies looked with alarm towards a new adversary in the east: Stalin’s Russia. The Italian port of Trieste, occupied by Yugoslav troops, was a flashpoint. Like a Cold War thriller, this history charts the destinies of a British SOE officer, an Austrian SS general, an American spy and a teenage Italian female partisan in a true story of espionage, escape and revenge.
At War on the Gothic Line
Fighting in Italy 1944–45
If much of the attention in Summer 1944 was on Normandy and the progress of the Allies through France, another enormous multinational army was also fighting doggedly further south and facing the last formidable barrier of German defensive positions, the Gothic Line, stretching from the Adriatic to the Mediterranean across mountainous northern Italy. This analysis of a year of fighting on the front tells the story through the varied experiences of 13 men and women from seven different countries.
Knights of the Round Table
Myths and Legends
Daniel Mersey retells ten Arthurian legends, including ‘The First Quest of the Round Table’, ‘Gawain and the Green Knight’ and ‘Tristan and Isolde’. Illustrated with artwork and photographs, the book places the stories in the context of the greater Arthurian tradition, and explains their impact on modern storytelling.
Jewish Commandos and the Raid on Tobruk
During the North African campaign in 1942, the British used a special force of German-speaking Jews recruited from displaced Germans in Palestine. This ‘Special Interrogation Group’ were given German military police uniforms and equipment and tasked with gathering crucial information from behind enemy lines. This book outlines the formation of the unit and describes its part in the raid on Tobruk in September 1942, which involved trekking across hundreds of miles of desert disguised as German soldiers transporting PoWs.
The Making of the Modern Christmas
What do we mean by a 'traditional' Christmas? Were old Christmases that much better than modern celebrations? This book traces the history of Christmas from pagan mid-winter festivals to its establishment as a Christian feast in the 4th century, through Puritan disapproval and the Victorian revival and refurbishment of old customs to the present day. En route we find The Times in 1912 already lamenting the separation of 'the secular from the sacred part of Christmas'.
The Trampled Wife
The Scandalous Life of Mary Eleanor Bowes
Mary Eleanor Bowes (1749-1800), direct ancestor of the Queen, was heiress to 'all the wealth of the north', but her life was anything but smooth and sweet. After an unhappy marriage to the 9th Earl of Strathmore, she fell into the cruel hands of an adventurer who resorted to extreme behaviour to get his hands on her money. Derek Parker tells an extraordinary true story of greed, blackmail, duelling, kidnapping and adultery that is more gripping than an historical novel.
The First Blitz
Bombing London in the First World War
The military potential of aviation was first exploited in the First World War, when London and other major cities were attacked by Zeppelins and, from 1917, Gotha and Staaken 'Giant' biplanes. This book examines the offensive and defensive strategies, the impact of each of the attacks and their legacy in defence planning. This is an updated, single volume version of London 1914–17: The Zeppelin Menace (2008) and London 1917–18: The Bomber Blitz (2010).
The In and Out
A History of the Naval and Military Club
Originally conceived as a 'civilized place of association' for officers on leave from the Peninsular War, the then 'Military Club' was founded, not without controversy, in 1815. Lavishly illustrated with reproductions of Club portraits and photographs, this volume traces the eventful history of the Club, through two world wars and an IRA bomb, and through several London locations before landing in St James's Square – but still sporting the 'In' and 'Out' of its Piccadilly home. Foreword by Prince Philip, the Club's President.
Challenge of Battle
The Real Story of the British Army in 1914
The exhaustive official History of the Great War gives a largely positive account of the British Expeditionary Force's performance in 1914, but Adrian Gilbert's research reveals significant failings as well as strengths. Covering the seven infantry divisions and cavalry of the original BEF of 1914 and drawing on contemporary accounts of the battles, including Mons, Le Cateau, the Aisne and Ypres, this book re-examines the decisions of senior officers and their consequences for the men at the front.
Women's Writing in Stuart England: The Mothers' Legacies of
Dorothy Leigh, Elizabeth Joscelin and Elizabeth Richardson
The form in which 17th century women chose to give maternal advice, the 'mother's legacy' reflects the Stuart preoccupation with meditating upon death and the significance with which deathbed blessings or pronouncements were imbued. The three presented here, with introductions and notes, include Elizabeth Joscelin's legacy, written shortly before her death in childbirth and published, with certain changes, by a chaplain in 1624. This edition reproduces Joscelin's own manuscript for the first time.
So Idle a Rogue
The Life and Death of Lord Rochester
Rake, libertine, satirist and poetic genius, John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester was one of the brightest luminaries at the court of Charles II. A man of extraordinary contradictions, he was notorious for the obscenity of his amorous verses yet also wrote some of the most moving and lyrical love poetry in the language. This biography reveals the truth beneath the brilliant facade of an unhappy, immensely talented man who eventually wanted no part of the world, or himself.
The Battle of Waterloo
Compiled and published soon after the battle, this book presented a 'series of accounts published by authority, British and foreign, and other relative documents, with circumstantial details, previous and after the battle, from a variety of authentic and original sources'. The present volume is a facsimile reprint of the seventh edition (1817). As well as eyewitness accounts, there are letters, honours and casualty lists (officers) and, folded in, a panoramic sketch of the battlefield. With a new introduction by Simon Adams.