This book looks at naval power as a key component policy and national life. It aims to analyse to what extent, and how, naval power shaped the development of Europe, both in war and peace. The book examines the contribution of sea power as an instrument of defence and conquest, its direct effects on the economy and its indirect effects as a protector of foreign trade. It also studies the Navy as a society in miniature, and as a part of society at large. This book cover not only the history of naval operations, but important aspects of national political, social, economic, technical and medical history, among others. 4th edition.