"The Best of Sail" (used book)

"The Best of Sail" (used book)

Regular price $25.00 Sale

The Best of Sail

by Basil Lubbock ~ Illustrated by Jack Spurling


About the book

Used book. Hardcover. Dust jacket included. Good condition


This collection of superb paintings by Jack Spurling, accompanied by Basil Lubbock’s lively and authoritative text, is one of the masterpieces of maritime literature.

Reproduced from the original covers of the legendary British magazine Blue Peter, a collector’s treasure long out of print, the paintings provide an authentic portrait of the great sailing ships from 1850 to the end of World War I. the text describes both the history of the ships and their lore and legend, recapturing in fine detail the romance, drama, and timeless beauty of the sea.

With excerpts from ship’s logs, sail and rigging plans, lists of captain and crew, and other fascinating details of day-to-day life on board, the reader can follow the course of famous ships on historic routes.

The unique qualities of the different vessels are brought to life in these carefully selected accounts, through paintings and text: the classic clippers, passenger carriers, Australian gold rush racers, the tea carriers such as the Thermopylae, sailing liners and wool clippers, the famous Tweed, once frigate for the East India Company. Finally, there are the great square-riggers with longer yards, more canvas, and smaller crews, and the colossal iron and steel riggers with metal mats and full-wire rigging.

The ships immortalized in the original issues of Blue Peter and preserved in these pages were active and hardy vessels, preferring the drama of a gale or a catspaw to the paralysis of a calm. Voyaging across the most dangerous waters of the wintry Horn and tropical Hope, these ships were finally and sadly overtaken when the shortened routes made possible by the Suez and Panama canals ushered in the age of steamship. The glorious reign of the sailing ships over the ocean could not compete with the mechanization of sea travel, and with the advent of the twentieth century, the era of great ships came to a close.

Now, however, through the work of Spurling and Lubbock, the ships are once again the heroines of the deep, and this wonderful volume encompasses the power and vastness of their empire.