- ISBN/SKU: 9781591144458
- Binding: Hardcover (USAC)
- Number of Pages: 320
- Subject: History
- Date Available: September 2011
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For its final battleship design Italy ignored all treaty restrictions on tonnage, and produced one of Europe's largest and most powerful capital ships, comparable with Germany's Bismarck class which were also built in defiance of international agreements. The three ships of the Littorio class were fast and elegant, but also boasted a revolutionary protective scheme–which was tested to the limits, as all three were heavily damaged in the hard-fought naval war in the Mediterranean. The book combines a detailed analysis of the design with an operational history, evaluating how the ships stood up to combat. It is illustrated with an amazing collection of photographs, detailed plans, and colored artwork of camouflage schemes, adding up to as complete a study of this class of battleship ever published.
Ermino Bagnasco is the Editor of Storia Militare, Italy's leading military journal. Augusto De Toro is a member of the staff of Storia Militare.
This book covers the Italian Littorio class battleships, in detail. It appears to be an English translation of the 2010 book "Le Navi da Battaglia Classe Littorio 1937-1948", second edition, by Bagnasco & De Toro. It is organized into 6 major chapters entitled "Battleships and Italian Naval Policy between the two World Wars", "Design and General Characteristics", Technical Description", "Construction, Sea Trials and Commissioning", "Operational History", and Comparisons and Conclusions". Appendices include a listing of operational movements and locations, detailed evaluations of each incident of battle damage, and gunnery details. The book is extensively illustrated with occasionally grainy, but frequently unusual photographs, extensive sketches and line drawings, and contains a section of small-scale plans and color/camouflage images. The book is a gold mine of detail. Some examples of this include cut-away drawings of turret layouts, ammunition stowage and armor placement plans, and detailed discussion of topics such as the Pugliese underwater protection system and the "composite"-construction side armored belt. The book also contains quite a bit of objective-sounding discussion of the pros and cons of these various design elements, and of their performance in comparison with equivalent elements in contemporary battleships of other nations. Physical quality is quite good. I recommend this book. MH