Faculty Book: David Syrett
The Rodney Papers: Selections from the Correspondence of Admiral Lord Rodney, vols. 1 and 2
(Ashgate, 2005, 2007)
Overbearing, avaricious, and difficult, yet talented and ambitious, George Brydges Rodney has never attracted much sympathy or understanding. He was nevertheless an original thinker and one of the great admirals of the eighteenth century. The contents of the first volume document his career from 1742 until 1763 and include letters to his wife. The second volume covers his life from the end of the Seven Years’ War until August 1780. This was perhaps his most eventful, extraordinary, and controversial period; from being a successful admiral and member of Parliament, Rodney plunged into debt and a debtor’s exile in France, only to rise again as a victorious admiral and as a national hero after his skillful conduct of the naval war in the West Indies in 1780 and his most famous victory, the Battle of the Saintes in 1782. This volume will permit reassessment of this outstanding British admiral of the American War of Independence for a new generation of historians. David Syrett taught for 38 years at Queens College and was a member of the doctoral faculty in history at the Graduate Center until his death in October 2004. The book was published posthumously.
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Submitted on: APR 1, 2007