Although the history of crime in english civilian society has by now become one of the most studied academic topics, books on crime and punishment in Britain`s armed forces are comparatively few. Redressing this imbalance, Markus Eder illustrates in this innovative study, how during a period crucial for the development of the british empire, discipline was upheld and enforced in that great creator of empire, the Royal Navy. Deviating from common practise, he neither limits himself to the study of a particular naval station as North America or the Mediterranean, nor to individual crimes as for example sodomy or mutiny, but examines all kinds of crimes on all naval stations. What emerges, is a complete picture of the overall patterns of naval crime and punishment as well as the awareness, that these patterns varied from one naval station to another. Moreover, by setting naval law strongly within the wider context of eighteenth century criminal law, he fully addresses such questions as the peculiarities of naval jurisprudence, its strictness in comparison to the civil law courts or the interaction between civil law courts and the navy on such issues as impressment, murder of civilians by mariners or perjury. The result is a most balanced and comprehensive work, likely to open new vistas on a as yet largely unexplored topic.
table of contents:
List of Tables p. vii 1. Introduction p. 1 Problems and Arguments p. 1 Literature and Sources p. 14 Administrative and Living Conditions in the Royal Navy p. 18 2. The Interaction of the Royal Navy and Civil Law Courts p. 24 Interaction of the Navy and Civil Law Courts in the Seddon Correspondence p. 25 The Integration of Problem Groups and Criminals into the Royal Navy p. 38 3. The Development of Naval Law between 1650 and 1750 p. 41 Offences against Individual Persons p. 43 Offences against the State p. 46 Offences against God and Religion p. 49 4. Genesis, Composition and Proceedings of Courts-Martial p. 50 Assembly and Composition of Courts-Martial p. 50 The Conduct of Naval Trials p. 53 Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Criticism of Courts-Martial Procedures p. 58 5. The Patterns of Crime and Punishment in the Royal Navy p. 63 Summary Punishment p. 64 Courts-Martial p. 77 Regional Variability of Naval Crime in the Mirror of Logbooks and Courts-Martial p. 116 6. The Use of Mercy in the Royal Navy p. 128 The Pardoning Process of Mariners Capitally Convicted by Assizes p. 128 Capital Convictions and the Pardoning System in the Royal Navy p. 131 7. Conclusion p. 150 Six Aspects of Major Importance p. 150 Appendix I Full Text of the Articles of War, passed by Parliament in 1749 p. 158 Appendix II Statistical Addenda p. 174 Bibliography p. 187 Index p. 195
…The book is well researched, there is much of significance here… and it makes an important addition to understanding an under-researched area of Crime and Punishment in Hanoverian England…Professor Clive Emsley , The Open University, in: Crime, History & Societies, Volume 8, number 1, pp.118-120. (2004)
.... gives an in depth look in the legal issues surrounding discipline in Britain`s Navy during this crucial period…History Today (2004)
This concisely written work is well worth acquiring for those with an interest in legal or naval history for this Period. In addition to the detailed and original research, the overview of existing historiography on British criminal and legal history and its interrelationship with the world of the Royal Navy is well worth the price of an Ashgate publication. Martin Hubley, in: The Northern Mariner, volume XV, number 2, pp.53-54 (2005)
….an interesting and important book that leads to consideration of the value of other studies on parallel and interacting systems of justice…. Professor Jeremy Black, University of Exeter, in: British Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies, volume 28, number 2,p. 293. (2005)
Crime and Punishment in the Royal Navy....
Publication date: 15.07.2010
application of british naval law during the eighteenth century
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