Admiral of the Fleet Earl Beatty

The Last Naval Hero: An Intimate Biography
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Published:May 15, 2018

Stephen Roskill’s magnificent biography explains why Admiral David Beatty has come to be seen as Britain’s last naval hero. His early promise led to fast promotion and he became the youngest admiral since Nelson.

But that is only one part of the story and there are aspects of his character that were not entirely admirable. There were, and still remain, questions over his handling of the 1st Battlecruiser Squadron at Jutland at which his highly aggressive approach was contrasted with the prudence of his commander, Sir John Jellicoe. His turbulent marriage and his extra-marital liaisons were to be suppressed in his official biography but in some ways, these aspects are as significant to our understanding of him as Nelson and Emma Hamilton’s great affair is to our reading of the Napoleonic era at sea.

Roskill deals with all these issues and in doing so brilliantly reassesses Beatty’s place in history. Access to new material at the time of writing allowed Roskill to write a balanced and wholly credible account of an extraordinary life, and this wonderfully readable and intimate biography will appeal to a whole new generation of readers.

List Price: $29.95
Member Price: $23.96
Product Details
  • Subject: World War I
  • Paperback : 432 pages
  • ISBN-10: 1526706555
  • ISBN-13: 9781526706553
  • Product Dimensions: 6.13 X 9.25 in
  • Shipping Weight: 25.12 oz
  • “This biography of Beatty is a definitive analysis of this complex man, written by a naval historian of impeccable credentials. Roskill substantiates the grandiose title in this work and we come away from the book with an appreciation of Beatty’s triumphs and tragedies, his character flaws and strengths and his intense personal feelings and disappointments. Perhaps he is, after all, The Last Naval Hero.” —The Australian Naval Institute

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