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The Oxford encyclopedia of maritime history

"The Encyclopedia covers the entire history of seafaring, from ancient Egyptian shipbuilders to the nuclear submarines and supertankers of today. Over nine hundred articles written by leading historians examine all aspects of maritime history, including naval history, shipbuilding, biographies of ma...

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Corporate Author: Oxford Reference Online.
Other Authors: Hattendorf, John B.
Format: Online
Language: English
Published: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2007
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Review by Choice Review

With the publication of this encyclopedia, maritime history can be said to have come of age. Editor Hattendorf (US Naval War College) presents a range of historical themes and information in a readily accessible summary form for use by both the general public and scholars. With more than 400 contributors from 49 countries, this work is truly international in scope. Readers will find maritime history defined as a multidimensional, humanistic study that encompasses humankind's relationships to the world's seas and oceans. The encyclopedia provides signed, topical articles arranged alphabetically with good cross-referencing and individual bibliographies. Entries range in length from a few paragraphs to several pages. Over 400 photographs/illustrations and over 60 maps/charts appear throughout the four volumes. A 219-page index eases access to the articles. Hattendorf has produced a historical tour de force for maritime history that will long stand as the definitive work encompassing depth, variety, and international perspective. Summing Up: Essential. Academic and public libraries; lower-level undergraduates and above, and general readers. H. N. Boyer Delaware County Community College

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Booklist Review

Much more than the usual naval  battles, warships, and nautical terms, this impressive and wide-ranging A-Z encyclopedia seeks to be a reference work for the entire field of maritime history. Editor Hattendorf (president of the American Society for Oceanic History) heads an inspiring list of over 400 primarily international contributors in an attempt to integrate maritime history into a global economic, cultural, military, and political context.  The more than 900 entries are detailed and multidimensional. Few are less than 350 words; most are quite expansive, with multiple subentries. For example, Wars, maritime includes 11 subentries and covers 56 pages. This integrated approach means that many entries that would be separate and distinct in other encyclopedias are effectively woven into broader, more meaningful context that exemplifies historical interdependencies and interrelationships. When looking up Caravel or Carrack, one finds a see reference to  Trading vessels, subentry on Medieval Vessels. The entry on Trading vessels demonstrates  the encyclopedia's strengths and limitations. Readers follow the evolution of  the Ancient Vessels of Egypt, Crete, and Mycenae to the galleys of Greece and Rome and to medieval cogs,  hulks, and knorrs. The development of caravels and carracks leads to the early modern days of sail and to The Age of Steam, concluding with modern diesel-powered, screw-driven container ships. However, although general readers and college and high-school students are identified as part of the audience, many of them will find the dense academic prose and nautical terminology difficult to follow. Numerous diverse and innovative topics are included: Cruising literature, Discipline and punishment, Greek literature, Narcotics trade, Religion, Wages and salaries, Unions, and Telecommunications. Entries, and many subentries, come complete with bibliographies and end-references. A Topical Outline of Entries organizes entries under broad themes. More than  400 black-and-white illustrations and 60 maps and nautical charts complement the text. The encyclopedia's scope makes it an excellent companion to more traditional naval warfare or nautical encyclopedias, such as Naval Warfare: An International Encyclopedia (2002) and Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea (2005). The only A-Z resource on maritime history is bound to become a standard subject reference and is recommended for academic libraries.--Becker, Charles Copyright 2007 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review

With more than 900 entries spread over 2000-plus pages, this resource offers more information on maritime subjects and topics than other works on the subject, which are for the most part period- or nation-specific. It covers the history of maritime events and themes from the dawn of seafaring to the present day, moving from the first prehistoric means of navigation to the modern supertankers and modern wartime naval vessels. The information is drawn from a wide range of international contributors from academia and maritime institutes from Europe, the Americas, Asia, and Oceania. Covering the areas of art, naval explorations, naval law and warfare, history, navigation, maritime engineering, naval biographies, maritime labor, and places, the signed entries are arranged alphabetically, include bibliographies, and are readily accessible via cross references. Chief editor Hattendorf has authored or coauthored more than 40 books on British and American maritime history and naval warfare, including Sailors & Scholars: The Centennial History of the U.S. Naval War College and England in the War of the Spanish Succession: A Study of the English View and Conduct of Grand Strategy, 1702-1712. Bottom Line The set has a general index in Volume 4, encompassing people (Juan de Fuca), places (Cartagena, Colombia), and subjects (social class), but while there is topical outline of entries, there is no separate subject, or topical, index, which would have which would have made searching for specific topics or subjects headings more seamless. Also, some entries seem too long or unnecessary given the specific topic of maritime history. Yet, the overall format and accessibility make this most suitable for large public, academic, and research libraries.-Luis J. Gonzalez, Hunter Coll. Libs., New York (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.