British History On The High Seas

Contributed by David

British History On The High Seas

While this is a book about sailing dating back 266 years, an inscription inside takes us back to...

..a captain William Scott Harrison on HMS 'Malabar' in 1807, who returned soldiers to England from an ill-fated attempt to invade and conquer Buenos Aries. The first invasion occurred the previous year, which also met with failure.

The attacks occurred during The Napoleonic Wars, and were possibly meant as a rebuke to the "Little General" and his alarming successes on the Continent - widely known and much feared in England at the time.

Captain Harrison has made in excess of two dozen notes throughout this well-worn volume, some of which address calculations made for sailing by the stars. We will never know why he made these, but it is possible he was a strong mathematician and found some errors in the formulae.

Could this have meant a different landing-place than intended, which might have also had a different outcome to British history, however minor? We shall likely never know, but at least we have the captain's inscription and notes from 200 years ago, in a book which may have been witness to this significant period in Britain's history.

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