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Young Nelsons: Boy sailors during the Napoleonic Wars (General Military) (英語) ハードカバー – 2009/9/22

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"The fought like young Nelsons." The words of a schoolmaster, writing from aboard HMS Mars after the battle of Trafalgar, describing the valor of his pupils in the heat of battle. Made immortal by the novels of Patrick O'Brian, C. S. Forester and Alexander Kent, these boy sailors, alongside those of every other Royal Navy ship, had entered the British Navy to fight the French across every ocean of the world. There was a long-standing British tradition of children going to sea, of boys who volunteered to fight for Britain, and along the way found adventure, glory, wealth and fame. During the Napoleonic Wars, these children, some as young as eight or nine, were also fighting for the very survival of Britain. For twenty years, the image of young Nelsons on the frontline of war caught the imagination of the nation.

Drawing on many first-hand accounts, letters, poems and writings, this book tells the dramatic story of Britain's boy sailors during the Napoleonic Wars for the very first time.


"This is a really first-rate book exploring in significant detail a little researched area of Naval Life and the author is to be congratulated on his depth of research to produce such a well structured and fascinating account." -David Clement

"Young Nelsons reads like Tom Brown's Schooldays at Sea. This is a fascinating though heartbreaking account of the little boys who grew into men in the hermetically sealed world of the Royal Navy. Riveting." -Dr Amanda Foreman, Senior Visiting Scholar, AHRB Centre for Editing Lives and Letters, Queen Mary, University of London and author of Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire

"Young Nelsons tells of boy sailors who volunteered to fight for Britain and found adventure, glory and fame in the process. These children - some as young as eight or nine - fought during the Napoleonic Wars: their letters, poems and diaries tell of their experience here and makes for an outstanding military history library addition." -The Bookwatch (December 2009)

"Youong boys might well be though a nuisance on board a sailing warship, but it was essential to train them from an early age in the skills and discipline required to maneuver a large sailing vessel during battle... It is therefore surprising that relatively little has been written about the role of boys in Nelson's era. This welcome book redresses that deficiency, using secondary sources and a range of firsthand accounts gleaned from the boys' letters, logbooks, and contemporary reports. Young Nelsons is well-written, well-referenced, and packed full of information - an easy and enjoyable read both for the specialist and the popular market." -Roy Adkins, Naval History (June 2010)

"To the best of my knowledge, this is the first book to examine this area, and its particular value lies in the mass of documentary evidence collected here from naval memoirs recounting the experiences of individual sailors, very often stories of endurance and suffering as these youngsters, some of them as young as 10 or 11, came to terms with the rites of passage (often involving bullying and the theft of their precious possessions) and the rough and tumble and hardship endured by novices at sea; all this graphically before us in vivid contemporary illustrations." - Brian Southam, JASNA News (Summer 2010)



  • ハードカバー: 320ページ
  • 出版社: Osprey Publishing (2009/9/22)
  • 言語: 英語
  • ISBN-10: 1846033608
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846033605
  • 発売日: 2009/9/22
  • 商品パッケージの寸法: 15.2 x 2.5 x 23.3 cm
  • おすすめ度: この商品の最初のレビューを書き込んでください。
  • Amazon 売れ筋ランキング: 洋書 - 1,231,367位 (洋書の売れ筋ランキングを見る)
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Amazon.com: 5つ星のうち HASH(0x8da9cedc) 4 件のカスタマーレビュー
6 人中、6人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x8dea53b4) Stirring account of the "young gentlemen" of Nelson's navy 2009/9/26
投稿者 Bruce Trinque - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
DAB Ronald's "Young Nelsons: Boy Sailors during the Napoleonic Wars" focuses primarily upon the youths who served in the Royal Navy during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Although those "ship's boys" who served on the lower deck are addressed, most of the book is devoted to the "young gentlemen" - volunteers and rated midshipmen who with luck and time become commissioned officers, whether they entered the Navy though personal connection with a ship's captain or by attendance at an institution such as the Portsmouth Naval Academy or even under the auspices of the Marine Society. The author's approach is generally anecdotal rather than analytical or statistical, drawing heavily upon letters from or later reminiscences by the youths in question. In some cases, Ronald departs from strict adherence towards relating the experiences of these young men, but diverges into discussions of Jane Austen's naval fiction and the careers of young officers even after being commissioned.

The book makes for vivid, albeit sometimes disjointed reading, more or less chronologically arranged from the start of Britain's war against Revolutionary France to the surrender of Napoleon Bonaparte (and the American War of 1812). Numerous, sometimes quite lengthy excerpts from first-hand accounts bring forward a great deal of colorful detail.

The publisher is Osprey, best known for its various series of innumerable heavily-illustrated, slender, and somewhat pricey paperbound volumes of military history, with particular emphasis on weapons and uniforms. In recent years, Osprey ventured upon reissuing collections of several of these paperback originals, on a common theme, gathered together in very attractive (and moderately priced) hardcovers. Now, Osprey has expanded its offerings to include some new text-based military history volumes, such as Ronald's "Young Nelsons".
1 人中、1人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x8dea5408) An Adequate Treatment of the Subject of Boys in the Georgian Navy 2014/8/14
投稿者 Mikey - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー Amazonで購入
I made the mistake of buying this book after having read "The Real Jim Hawkins" which is a much more thorough treatment of the subject of boys in the Georgian Navy. This was not an ill written book however, and I have nothing bad to say about it, except if you were to own one book on the subject, Id go with "Hawkins".
1 人中、1人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x8dea56e4) Midshipman, R.N. - the long untold story, mainly in his own words 2010/5/13
投稿者 Der Graf - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
"Young Nelsons" is a highly unique volume devoted to probably the least studied group of Royal Navy seamen - the "Snotties." Although their age during Napoleonic Wars on which Ronalds' book concentrates could vary from eight to well over thirty, they typically joined gunrooms of the Navy in their early childhood. They joined, like Nelson himself, through the epedient of having a naval connection - a captain-friend or relative willing to take a new midshipman aboard the ship he commanded. Youth notwithstanding, from the very first moment they joined the ship, midshipmen of the Royal Navy were expected to demonstrate all qualities of a gentleman, officer, and soon to become a seaman capable as much of leading men in a boarding charge, commanding a ship if need be, or taking a landing party ashore. Their lives, spent in the often harsh and unsentimental atmosphere of a sailing warship, filled with dreams of glory as often as the fear of personal inadequacy, are presented for the first time in a single volume based on original writings of gentlemen-children whose bravery and daring are today largely forgotten and unknown by the general public.

Even if frequently present in the novels of Douglas Reeman (writing as Alexander Kent), Patrick O'Brian, or C. Northcote Parkinson, the Midshipman, R.N. is often a two-dimensional figure, a filling-in stereotype, whose real personality is far more elusive than that of any other officer or rating found on the pages of these acclaimed authors. Ronalds' book redresses the deficiency by providing the modern reader with a view or trigonometry of the sailing warship seen through the eyes of its youngest member - the midshipman. It is by no means a dry, academic treatise on the life in the gunroom, on either the proscribed lessons on seamanship or trigonometry, or the number of cane strokes administered as the punishment by the gunroom's commanding, sometimes even terrorizing, figure - the Gunroom Sublieutenant, himself often freshly transited from the gun- to the wardroom. Instead, it is a book that shows life of a midshipman, with all its challenges, fascinations, and sorrows as seen by children acting like fully grown up men, often surpassing them in achievement, honorable conduct, loyalty and the depth of friendship.

Ronalds provides a rare view of many aspects of the gunroom's live. An important view indeed, since it was the gunroom where the young gentlemen were exposed to the foundations on which the future Cochranes, Smiths, and Moores of Royal Navy grew. It was the gunroom that imbued the "young gentlemen" with the traditions and the ways of the Service. It was the gunroom that helped to convert children into adults within the briefest of times by giving them responsibilities and offering experience far surpassing that many grown-up contemporaries ever faced ashore.

"Young Nelsons" is a book that will speak to anyone who ever went to sea, whose interest centers on the affairs of navies and of men who made and make them, and all those interested in the social history of the Royal Navy. It is also a book that will give the reader unfamiliar with the harsh realities of those long forgotten days a glimpse into the fascinating world, one that is utterly unimaginable today, in which adolescents manning ships of His Majesty helped to shape the fate of the world, rather than playing, as their equivalents of today would, under the protective wing of their teachers. It is, indeed, a fascinating book, and Ronalds is to be congratulated for choosing this extraordinarily unique subject, and for giving it such a superb treatment.
2 人中、1人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
5つ星のうち HASH(0x8dea5c0c) Tells of boy sailors who volunteered to fight for Britain and found adventure, glory and fame in the process 2009/12/20
投稿者 Midwest Book Review - (Amazon.com)
形式: ハードカバー
YOUNG NELSONS: BOY SAILORS DURING THE NAPOLEONIC WARS tells of boy sailors who volunteered to fight for Britain and found adventure, glory and fame in the process. These children - some as young as eight or nine - fought during the Napoleonic Wars: their letters, poems and diaries tells of their experiences here and makes for an outstanding military history library addition.
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