Garrett Mattingly's thrilling narrative sets out the background of the sixteenth-century European intrigue and religious unrest that gave rise to one of the world's most famous maritime crusades and the naval battles that decided its fate. In putting the naval campaign of 1588 back into the context of the first great international crisis of modern history, Mattingly builds up, like the movements of a symphony, a broad picture of how events of the time affected men's actions, plans and hopes. He brilliantly connects a series of scenes or episodes, shifting the point of focus from England to the continent and from courts to ships and cities. The feeling of tension mounts to a crescendo throughout Europe as the great drama of the Armada is approached. The battle itself and the aftermath are so vividly and poignantly described that they might be happening in our world today. 'A rare and wonderful book, as readable and exciting as a novel, amazingly fresh and stimulating in its approach to a great subject, and impressive for the wide range and authority of its scholarship' - J.E. Neale.
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(234mm x 156mm x 26mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
England's victory over the Spanish Armada was the first event in her long reign as the major sea power of Europe, and has helped to define the English nation's view of itself even up to the present day. Though written in the 1950s, Mattingly's account of the crisis in affairs between Spain and England that culminated in the last sea invasion of Britain to be attempted has not been bettered for scholarship and readability. As with other campaigns, with the perspective of time it is hard to see how the enterprise could have succeeded. The Spanish were poorly commanded, their ships less weatherly and slower, their armaments not as good. None of this was apparent to the English in 1588 and this book brings those desperate times vividly to life. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Garrett Mattingly
Garrett Mattingly (1900-1961) was Professor of European History at Columbia University. He specialized in early modern diplomatic history and his other books include "Catherine of Aragon" and "Renaissance Diplomacy."