Victory of Seapower: Winning the Napoleonic War 1806-1814

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9781845600129: Victory of Seapower: Winning the Napoleonic War 1806-1814

Although Nelson’s stunning victory at Trafalgar did not immediately win the war, it gave the Royal Navy the freedom to exploit the unprecedented seapower it had achieved. The threat
from the French battlefleet was never entirely eliminated, but the rigorous policy of blockading the main bases meant that Napoleon’s navy was never able to mount a significant challenge to British supremacy.
Thereafter British policy was to employ its seapower, first to defend the ever-increasing trade that paid for the war-effort, and second to strike back at the dominant military power of France and its satellite states whenever the opportunity arose. Often the two strategies were
closely linked, as in the gradual takeover of the French Caribbean colonies and the elimination of Dutch power in the East Indies. The Navy also fought all around the periphery of Europe, and although not every amphibious operation was as successful as the 1807
assault on Copenhagen, the naval aspect was usually executed with skill and aplomb. Even Wellington admitted that the Navy’s support won him the Peninsular War.

The period 1806-1814 witnessed continual naval warfare--against the Danes, the Russians, the Turks, and ultimately the Americans, as well as the French and their Dutch and Italian allies--and the ultimate defeat of Napoleon; this volume describes the naval aspect of that
defeat in vivid detail.

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About the Author:

RICHARD WOODMAN has recently retired after a career at sea as an officer, first with the Blue Funnel and Glen Lines, and later with Trinity House, the prestigious and time-honored service responsible for lighthouses, seamarks and navigational aids around the coasts of the British Isles. He became its Deputy Marine Superintendent in 1991 and in 1992 was promoted Captain. He began writing at sea, and has some two dozen novels to his credit, including the Nathaniel Drinkwater series, for which he has immersed himself in the history and culture of the 1793-1815 period in which they are set. He is also the author of numerous non-fiction works, including a prize-winning history of Trinity House.

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