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Anyone here interested in 1790s France and England?

SGM
Compulsive Reader

Postby SGM » Sun September 12th, 2010, 6:46 am

"M.M. Bennetts" wrote:I'm a specialist in British political and military history of the Napoleonic era


Outside your stated period, but do you have any recommendations on naval history (British) for the later part of the 17th century and very beginning of the 18th?

For reasons too complicated to go into, I am pursuing this line at the moment. I don't normally do the wars/battles being more interesting in causation and consequences (I was educated in an all girls' school so that is not so surprising) but as I grew up in and around Portsmouth, I do have rather more background in naval affairs than other military matters and I have a particular interest in the English navy from the Interregnum to the end of Queen Anne's reign.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

M.M. Bennetts

Postby M.M. Bennetts » Sun September 12th, 2010, 7:12 am

"SGM" wrote:Outside your stated period, but do you have any recommendations on naval history (British) for the later part of the 17th century and very beginning of the 18th?

For reasons too complicated to go into, I am pursuing this line at the moment. I don't normally do the wars/battles being more interesting in causation and consequences (I was educated in an all girls' school so that is not so surprising) but as I grew up in and around Portsmouth, I do have rather more background in naval affairs than other military matters and I have a particular interest in the English navy from the Interregnum to the end of Queen Anne's reign.


I'd start with N.A.M. Rodger's history of the navy...He's always utterly fascinating (in person or print). There should actually be a lot about that period, because that's when the whole navy was overhauled, Sam Pepys was at its head as Secretary of the Navy and introduced a modern system of record keeping--in fact any good biography of Samuel Pepys should cover his years at the Admiralty in detail. The Claire Tomalin one is the most recent and comprehensive. It's also the period when in order to build more ships, the Bank of England was formed--so again, a history of the first few years of the BoE will have all sorts of juicy info. Trust this will at least give you a launch pad.

As I recall there was a great arms race going on then, with the French. And in those days, arms race meant ships. The Dutch threat had been neutralised in November 1688 when William of Orange landed in Torbay with one of the largest flotillas had seen. So Catholic France thereafter became the main threat. Fascinating stuff!
Last edited by Guest on Sun September 12th, 2010, 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

SGM
Compulsive Reader

Postby SGM » Sun September 12th, 2010, 9:31 am

"M.M. Bennetts" wrote:I'd start with N.A.M. Rodger's history of the navy...He's always utterly fascinating (in person or print).


Thanks, I have the Rodger's books and I have been a fan of Pepys since my teens and was able to listen to the Tomalin book in audio format during a very boring job last year. I even have the Bryant books on him (I am not fond of Bryant). Unfortunately, Rodger is not detailed enough for me for the period I am interested in and Pepys (bless his little cotton socks) does not go on late enough for me (even including the later diaries). However, John Brewer's Sinews of Power is fascinating on the financial/economic consequences of the growth in the navy from the Restoration onwards.

I know of NF about Cromwell's navy and also the navy of the Restoration, but unfortunately, none of the local authority nor the University libraries I have access to hold them. I just wondered if there were other options as they are not cheap but I suppose I will have to stump up for them.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

M.M. Bennetts

Postby M.M. Bennetts » Sun September 12th, 2010, 9:49 am

"SGM" wrote:Thanks, I have the Rodger's books and I have been a fan of Pepys since my teens and was able to listen to the Tomalin book in audio format during a very boring job last year. I even have the Bryant books on him (I am not fond of Bryant). Unfortunately, Rodger is not detailed enough for me for the period I am interested in and Pepys (bless his little cotton socks) does not go on late enough for me (even including the later diaries). However, John Brewer's Sinews of Power is fascinating on the financial/economic consequences of the growth in the navy from the Restoration onwards.

I know of NF about Cromwell's navy and also the navy of the Restoration, but unfortunately, none of the local authority nor the University libraries I have access to hold them. I just wondered if there were other options as they are not cheap but I suppose I will have to stump up for them.


Let me ask about and get back to you. I think there may be some stuff in Lisa Jardine's book "Going Dutch" I think the book's called. Or something like that. And as ever, I check out the bibliographies...that's where the truly useful stuff is often found. The Bank of England angle might reveal some interesting stuff...also, I'll talk to a friend of mine at the University of Exeter, see if he's got any leads.

One thing you might want to consider though--obviously I don't know where you're based and London can be quite a distance--a readers card at the British Library. You have to produce a drivers' license and a current passport to get one, but a day spent there can be worth more than anything...it takes them about 70 minutes to bring your books to you...but after that: heaven!

SGM
Compulsive Reader

Postby SGM » Sun September 12th, 2010, 10:52 am

[QUOTE=M.M. Bennetts;69395]One thing you might want to consider though--obviously I don't know where you're based and London can be quite a distance--a readers card at the British Library. QUOTE]

Thanks for your help. I am avoiding the British Library route at the moment because although it is very convenienty located for me, I work during the week so would only be able to use it on Saturdays when everybody else does. Also, they now say that if you are a private individual you are unlikely to get a reader's card for more than a month at a time which means constantly renewing it. Actually the Guildhall Library, which is far more accommodating that the BL, is very good just, unfortunately, not in this instance. However, when I move onto the medical aspects of the period I am interested in there is none better as they inherited all the records of the Barber-Surgeon's guild. So it's swings and roundabouts. I will get there in the end.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

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Miss Moppet
Bibliophile
Location: North London
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Postby Miss Moppet » Sun September 12th, 2010, 9:58 pm

"SGM" wrote: I am avoiding the British Library route at the moment because although it is very convenienty located for me, I work during the week so would only be able to use it on Saturdays when everybody else does. Also, they now say that if you are a private individual you are unlikely to get a reader's card for more than a month at a time which means constantly renewing it.


Did the library tell you that? If so it seems they are backtracking from their policy of a few years back which was to let everyone in, in the name of accessibility. The result was the place filled up with undergraduates who used it to read their own textbooks rather than use the collections, and at Easter and over the summer, with the influx of overseas academics, the overcrowding was appalling. It sounds like they have tightened things up and I hope they haven't gone in the other direction and put up barriers to people who really need to use the collections. I think it is worth a try - I actually find the library is much quieter on Saturdays than during the week and it is also open till 8pm Mon-Thurs and is relatively quiet after 5.30 on those evenings.

Edited to add: also, once you have a card you can order the material you need in advance online, so there's no wait once you get there. That does make it worth going just for an hour or two.
Last edited by Miss Moppet on Sun September 12th, 2010, 10:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

M.M. Bennetts

Postby M.M. Bennetts » Mon September 13th, 2010, 9:33 am

"SGM" wrote:[QUOTE=M.M. Bennetts;69395]One thing you might want to consider though--obviously I don't know where you're based and London can be quite a distance--a readers card at the British Library. QUOTE]

Thanks for your help. I am avoiding the British Library route at the moment because although it is very convenienty located for me, I work during the week so would only be able to use it on Saturdays when everybody else does. Also, they now say that if you are a private individual you are unlikely to get a reader's card for more than a month at a time which means constantly renewing it. Actually the Guildhall Library, which is far more accommodating that the BL, is very good just, unfortunately, not in this instance. However, when I move onto the medical aspects of the period I am interested in there is none better as they inherited all the records of the Barber-Surgeon's guild. So it's swings and roundabouts. I will get there in the end.


I spoke to my friend at Exeter, and he suggested you get in touch by email with Michael Duffy who lectures there on naval history. He also found this for you: http://eric.exeter.ac.uk/exeter/handle/10036/104516

He's going to keep his ear to the ground now for you and I'll get back to you with anything else (anyone else?) he uncovers.

M.M. Bennetts

Postby M.M. Bennetts » Mon September 13th, 2010, 9:36 am

"Miss Moppet" wrote:Did the library tell you that? If so it seems they are backtracking from their policy of a few years back which was to let everyone in, in the name of accessibility. The result was the place filled up with undergraduates who used it to read their own textbooks rather than use the collections, and at Easter and over the summer, with the influx of overseas academics, the overcrowding was appalling. It sounds like they have tightened things up and I hope they haven't gone in the other direction and put up barriers to people who really need to use the collections. I think it is worth a try - I actually find the library is much quieter on Saturdays than during the week and it is also open till 8pm Mon-Thurs and is relatively quiet after 5.30 on those evenings.

Edited to add: also, once you have a card you can order the material you need in advance online, so there's no wait once you get there. That does make it worth going just for an hour or two.


A friend of mine just got a reader's card--did the thing by internet, brought in his passport and driver's license, and got the thing on the day. No problem.

Yes, the place is packed at holidays with undergrads, but the rest of the time it's fine.

SGM
Compulsive Reader

Postby SGM » Mon September 13th, 2010, 5:45 pm

"Miss Moppet" wrote:Did the library tell you that?
Edited to add: also, once you have a card you can order the material you need in advance online, so there's no wait once you get there. That does make it worth going just for an hour or two.


I must admit I have been looking into using the BL for many years and it keeps changing. I think I got the latest from their website but can't remember.

I do remember at one point, being told by them on the phone that they were a library of last resort and that I had to provide a list of books which I had been unable to source elsewhere and at another time they wanted a 500-word description of my research subject. I very much got the impression that they really didn't want the library freely used. Things may very well have changed now.

However, thanks for the info about Saturdays not being busy. Unfortunately, I can't make weekday evenings as at the moment I travel and long way and don't get back into London until late. But if Saturdays are not heaving with people, I may just jump in and do it.

I just wished I had got the ticket when I did my Masters because I could have got a lifetime ticket.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

SGM
Compulsive Reader

Postby SGM » Mon September 13th, 2010, 5:47 pm

"M.M. Bennetts" wrote:[QUOTE=SGM;69401]

I spoke to my friend at Exeter, and he suggested you get in touch by email with Michael Duffy who lectures there on naval history. He also found this for you: http://eric.exeter.ac.uk/exeter/handle/10036/104516

He's going to keep his ear to the ground now for you and I'll get back to you with anything else (anyone else?) he uncovers.


Thank you very much for all your help and advice. It is much appreciated. I always have to go for the obscure, it seems to be in my nature.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith


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