Kings on the Way

Cue drum roll… I’m delighted to be able to announce that my new non-fiction book, Kings of the Sea: Charles II, James II and the Royal Navy, has gone off to Seaforth Publishing, and should be published next summer. And here, for the first time online, is the cover – In many ways, I feel that Kings […]

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 […]

Dead Admirals Society’s Only Way is Essex

Attending a party in Chelmsford at the weekend had an unexpected bonus – my first visit to Chelmsford Cathedral, which revealed a couple of interesting naval memorials. Here’s the poignant epitaph for John Pocock Tindal, killed at the age of seventeen as signal midshipman aboard HMS Monarch, Vice-Admiral Onslow’s flagship. I’ve had an interest in the […]

‘We’ve Got Pepys Bang to Rights This Time,’ said Morse

Every now and again, a historian comes across something which is so far from left field that it’s actually from a completely different farm. That’s certainly the case with the discovery made a few years back by my friend and colleague, Richard Endsor, author of The Restoration Warship. As he’s doing a ‘star turn’ next weekend, dressing […]

Incoming Angel, Part 2

The publication of Death’s Bright Angel, the new Quinton novel, is getting ever closer, so here’s another ‘teaser trailer’ for the book! This describes the destruction of the Dutch merchant shipping in the Vlie anchorage on 9 and 10 August 1666 (Old Style; 19 and 20 August on the calendar used by the Dutch, so the […]

A Darker Angel

Last week, I posted the first few pages of the fictional plot of Death’s Bright Angel as a ‘teaser trailer’ for the book’s forthcoming publication. But as I’ve mentioned before, this title is actually ‘two books in one’, with the second part being a detailed historical analysis of the evidence surrounding the outbreak of the Great Fire. […]

Cry God for Charlie, England, and Saint James!

Today, 25 July 2016, is Saint James’ day in the Church of England’s liturgical calendar, and exactly 350 years ago, the relatively little known Saint James’ day battle took place in the waters of the southern North Sea. This was a sequel to the huge Four Days’ Battle that had been fought at the beginning […]

Dead Admirals Society in the Highlands

Sometimes, one comes across dead admirals in unexpected ways and unexpected places. This was definitely the case during our recent road trip back from Orkney, where we’d been during the Jutland commemorations. On our journey north, my ‘significant other’ – the ‘LadyQJ’ of my Twitter feed – spotted a sign for a pottery whose products […]

The 350th Anniversary of the Four Days Battle, 1666

The posting of this blog coincides with the exact 350th anniversary of the start of the Four Days’ Battle in 1666. Perfectly understandably, all of the media and social media attention focused on naval history this week has centred on the centenary of the Battle of Jutland, so this is my attempt to redress the […]

Highways and Byways of the 17th Century: the Naval Engagement at Swansea, 1660- The Last Shots of the British Civil Wars?

This week, I’m cross-posting a blog that I first published earlier in the week on my Welsh naval history site, britanniasdragon.com. The restoration of the monarch in 1660 was an astonishingly rapid development, one which could hardly have been foreseen at all until just before it actually took place. Inevitably, this led to much confusion, […]