Sea, the Conference

This blog has often touched on the subject of ‘sea blindness’ in modern Britain, notably here, and I also took that as the theme of the keynote lecture I delivered to last year’s conference for new researchers in maritime history. One important element of this discussion is the state of maritime history research in the […]

The Barbary Corsair Raid on Iceland, 1627

This week, I’m delighted to welcome Professor Adam Nichols as my guest blogger. Adam is the co-author of a new book which provides a first-hand account of one of a remarkable but very little known event, the Barbary Corsair raid on Iceland in 1627. Having done quite a lot of work over the years on aspects […]

Other South American Rivers are Available

I don’t usually plug other people’s books on this site, but occasionally, titles come along that really deserve a bit of a leg-up – especially if they fall within my usual very strict and narrow remits (i.e. seventeenth century, naval, seventeenth century naval, or absolutely anything else whatsoever that interests me), and/or if their publishers […]

The Tailed Men are Coming! The Tailed Men are Coming!

Yes, a bonus post this week – and following on from the last one, ‘The Butterboxes are Coming! The Butterboxes are Coming!’, which used one of the principal insults seventeenth century Brits directed at the Dutch, I thought I’d even the score by using one of the worst Dutch insults for us. Goddeloze staartman, the […]

The Butterboxes are Coming! The Butterboxes are Coming!

…butterboxes, of course, being one of the principal terms of neighbourly respect (umm…) that seventeenth century Brits used for the Dutch. They were certainly coming in 1667, culminating in the famous attack on the Medway in June, and they’re coming this year, too, for the 350th anniversary! So I thought I’d use this blog to […]

The Anglo-Dutch Fleet at the Battle of Barfleur/La Hogue 1692

I’m delighted to be able to start the New Year with a really important guest blog from Frank Fox. Following on from his previous contributions on this site, which provided the most definitive listings of the fleets at the Battle of the Texel/Kijkduin (11/21 August 1673), Frank has now turned his attention to the twin […]

Noah’s Archive

So there are conferences which you go to and think ‘meh’, conferences which take place on a Saturday and you’ve completely forgotten what they were all about by Monday, and the conferences that fire you up and leave the building thinking you’re Thor or Wonder Woman (delete as applicable) and that the bad guys had […]

Boaty McBoatface? Lame, Say the Shades of Countless Generations of Mariners

So Boaty McBoatface won the vote, then. Quelle surprise. Just about the one and only reason I wish I could still be alive in two hundred years time is to see how the maritime historians of that era (assuming that there are such things then; i.e. both maritime historians and eras) interpret this bizarre phenomenon of […]

Whale of a Time

What a weekend it was! Weymouth Leviathan, the UK’s first and currently only maritime literary festival, was undoubtedly a tremendous success. A packed programme embraced a wide variety of talks and other events, many of which were attended by large, enthusiastic audiences. From a personal point of view, it was great to be able to […]

Samuel Pepys versus The Incredible Hulk

Don’t make me angry; you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry. Or, alternatively, it is a truth universally acknowledged that those who get outraged by things on Twitter are in need of a life. Having said that, occasionally one sees something on Twitter which is so staggeringly crass that the metaphorical shirt-ripping (but, of course, […]