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The World's Lighthouses: From Ancient Times to 1820by D. Alan Stevenson
Synopses & Reviews
In use since the dawn of recorded history for the guidance of ships at sea, lighthouses have long been a source of inspiration and fascination. Indeed, a lighthouse ranked among the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Lighthouse lovers will welcome this new edition of a classic volume and#8212; a superb, profusely illustrated survey of lighthouses from earliest times to 1820. Noted authority D. Alan Stevenson and#8212; a relative of Robert Louis Stevenson and member of a clan of lighthouse engineers and#8212; drew upon records from the family firm and old books now inaccessible to most readers to write this highly readable, extensively researched account.
Chronicling both the construction of the towers as well as the methods of illumination, the text traces developments from the open fires of thousands of years ago. The introduction of candles and oil lamps, followed by parabolic reflectors and the world's first revolving light in 1871, culminates in the 1819 construction of Bell Rock Tower, the last of the great isolated lighthouses built before steam vessels were available to transport building materials. In addition to a wealth of technical data, the text is enhanced by more than 200 rare illustrations and designs. Depictions include such seamarks as a Venetian oil navigation light (c. 1400), the Pharos of Ostia (c. 1575), the Messina lighthouse (1674), the Dungeness lighthouse (c. 1690), and Australia's Macquarie lighthouse (1817).
Maritime historians, lighthouse enthusiasts, and anyone who has ever felt the romantic lure of these lonely sentinels by the sea will prize this remarkable work.
Book News Annotation:
D. Alan Stevenson (1815-1886) presents a well-illustrated survey of lighthouses, describing the transition from the wood fires of antiquity to the reflector lights of 1819. Topics include, for example, the use of candles and oil lamps, the invention of the parabolic reflector, and the 1819 construction of Bell Rock Tower. The volume is a reprint of a 1959 Oxford University Press edition titled .
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
This superb, profusely illustrated survey by noted authority recounts the history of seamarks from antiquity to the early 19th century. 261 black-and-white illustrations.
This superb, profusely illustrated survey by noted authority recounts the history of seamarks from antiquity to the early 19th century. Chronicling both the construction of the towers and the methods of illumination, the text offers a wealth of technical data in highly readable form, plus 261 black-and-white illustrations.
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