The Restoration Warship is a comprehensive history of the Lenox, a 70-gun third rate of Charles II's Navy, illustrated with my own plans, paintings and sketches. Lenox represents the pinnacle of English shipbuilding practice and in many ways typifies all third-rate ships of the period. They were by far the most numerous class of warship in the seventeenth century and formed the backbone of the English fleet. Lenox was ordered as the first of the King's ‘Thirty Ships’ building programme, a series of beautiful and powerful warships that were intended to reflect the glory and majesty of the monarch. Their graceful lines and ornate decoration made these ships ideal subjects for study, drawings of which were made by the famous artists the Van de Veldes, the fathers of the English marine painting genre. Unsurprisingly, the ships remain a source of fascination for historians and ship modellers today. They were constructed at the end of the Anglo-Dutch Wars and midway through Louis XIV's massive expansion programme for the French Navy. I have employed extensive primary research to produce a detailed building and career history of this vessel. Every aspect of Lenox is covered in great detail, from initial design and construction to armament, fitting out and her later career. The book provides a broad picture of the day-to-day workings of Deptford dockyard, including the techniques, trade and tools of the shipwrights, sail-makers and boat builders. It also gives an insight into the workings of naval administration, as well as including social history from the accounts of the people involved with Lenox. Construction of Lenox and her sisters was largely down to Samuel Pepys, the famous diarist and Secretary of the Admiralty, who considered the Thirty Ships programme to be ‘the greatest achievement of my career’.
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