Great Harry's Navy: How Henry VIII Gave England Seapower

Great Harry's Navy: How Henry VIII Gave England Seapower

by Geoffrey Moorhouse
     
 

Ground-breaking history of how King Henry VIII created England's navy

It was Henry VIII who began the process of making England a first-rate sea-power. He inherited no more than seven warships from Henry VII, yet at his own death the King's Navy had 53 seaworthy ships afloat (much the same size as the Royal Navy today) manned by almost 8,000

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Overview

Ground-breaking history of how King Henry VIII created England's navy

It was Henry VIII who began the process of making England a first-rate sea-power. He inherited no more than seven warships from Henry VII, yet at his own death the King's Navy had 53 seaworthy ships afloat (much the same size as the Royal Navy today) manned by almost 8,000 sailors.

Henry VIII originally needed a navy to hold the English Channel and blockade the enemy while he invaded France. Later when invasion from the continent grew serious Henry's navy fought in many actions.

Moorhouse doesn't only deal with seagoing exploits. Thanks to Henry VIII dockyards were built (Greenwich and Deptford), timber had to be felled in quantities previously unknown (from land seized during the dissolution of the monasteries), and hemp (for rope) was harvested; new skills were developed, not least the gun-founders and the master shipwrights.

Some of the ships were celebrated - 'Henry Grace a Dieu' (aka 'Great Harry') was the biggest ship in the world - 1,000 tons, 122 guns, crew of 700 and the 'Mary Rose' (500 tons, 80 guns, 40 crew) became one of the most famous after she heeled over too far, took water and sank with the loss of almost all hands off Portsmouth.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Moorhouse is steeped in his subject and conveys the often daunting detail of maritime plenipotence with an infectious Patrick O'Brian-like enthusiasm—THE TIMES

[A] detailed and atmospheric account—SUNDAY TELEGRAPH

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780297645443
Publisher:
Orion Publishing Group, Limited
Publication date:
10/28/2006
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.60(d)

Meet the Author

Geoffrey Moorhouse was ¿one of the best writers of our time¿ (Byron Rogers, The Times), ¿a brilliant historian¿ (Dirk Bogarde, Daily Telegraph) and ¿a writer whose gifts are beyond category¿ (Jan Morris, Independent on Sunday). He wrote over twenty books, on subjects ranging from travel and spirituality to cricket and rugby league. In 1982 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. His To the Frontier won the Thomas Cook Award for the best travel book of its year in 1984. More recently he concentrated on Tudor history, notably with THE PILGRIMAGE OF GRACE and, in 2005, GREAT HARRY'S NAVY. He died in November 2009.

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