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The Defeat Of The Spanish Armada [Paperback]

Garrett Mattingly
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
Price: 12.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

6 July 2000
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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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Pimlico; 3rd Revised edition edition (6 July 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0712666273
  • ISBN-13: 978-0712666275
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.2 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 290,020 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A historical masterpiece." - A. L. Rowse"A rare and wonderful book, as readable and exciting as a novel." - J. E. Neale

Book Description

The classic account of one of the world's most famous maritime crusades.'A historical masterpiece.' A.L. Rowse

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This history of the Spanish Armada is gripping right from the start - the moment of the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots. The protagonists are well described, from Philip of Spain to Pope Sixtus V and Queen Elizabeth, through all the military and naval commanders - from the audacious Drake to the brilliant Duke of Parma or the inexperienced Medina-Sidonia. The naval engagements are brought to life as are the land campaigns which, for instance, tried to secure a Flemish port for the Spaniards to use as a spring board for their army in the Netherlands. Fire-ships, men-of-war, galleys rowed by galley slaves, spies, treachery, piracy, the clash between Protestantism and Catholicism... Highly recommended and highly readable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine explanation of the events behind the Armada 27 April 2006
Although the naval history of the Armada is competently covered here, the main interest of this fascinating book is the diplomatic and military preambles to the event. Mattingly brings to life the characters involved: the brooding, bureaucratic Philip, the professional Farnese, the Jesuit exiles. Their motivations are delineated and the limits of their power to control events are explored.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A real classic 30 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Fantastic book ....great prose and a spell-binding subject. The characters emerge with all their human failings and foibles. The tale cannot quite hold its fascination after Gravelines when the Spanish fleet falls apart on its return to Spain but that's the fault of history....until then it's a rip roaring adventure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I thought I knew the story 9 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is Elizabeathan geopolitics made easy. I did not realise the whole why and how or that some rampaging work by Drake possibly changed the course of history. Look out for the story about the hoops and barrels. Totally fascinating, read it by chapter at a time, in small doses. If the History Teacher at Portland Secondary Modern had told us the story this way we would have had the truth, this book was out there in the 1960's.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Read 10 April 2012
This is a fantastic read for anyone who had a brief knowledge of the Spanish Armada, with inside details about the religious problems and factions vying for power in western Europe and the fall out and aftermath of the parties concerned.
It gleams light onto the unseen hardness and nobleness of Medina Sidonia with lack of resources and fire power and still how he conducts himself as a gentleman in his life after the battle. It also looks at the other men in the defence of the Queens realm and squabbles and disagreements between the captains of the navy and person feud between Drake and Frobisher.

The chapters are nice and short too so you can leave it and pick up at good points in the book.
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